Turning the Walk of Shame Into the Stride of Pride
How many people have you slept with?
No, really, how many? 10? 15? 30? 100?
I’ve slept with 16 people. I’m lying. In all honesty? I have no idea how many people I’ve slept with. Not because it’s hundreds and hundreds and my brain can’t store all the data, but because I just don’t care. I kept a list until my late teens, and then threw it away. Because what is the point? I’ve done the ‘Walk of Shame’ more times than I’ve walked to school, but to me there’s nothing shameful about it. What is there to be ashamed of about embracing your single status, letting your hair down and meeting a man who makes your fanny flutter? Women everywhere are doing the mattress mambo, loving it, and returning home in the morning like it ain’t no thing. Because, really, it ain’t. Am I unclean and impure for sleeping with ‘a lot’ of people? Combining both of the above, I bet you can guess what certain people call me. Let me give you a clue- it’s a four letter word, starting with S and is generally used by those unable to comprehend that shaming, silencing and attacking women is not how anyone should behave.
‘Slut’ is a made up word. There is literally, no such thing. It’s a word plucked from the 1300s (then used to describe working class women with dirty clothes) that has been adopted by rejected, arrogant men everywhere- and by jealous and bitchy girls. So, in such a modern age of society- why are people still so obsessed with something from the past?
It’s an unfortunate, yet unequivocal truth: When it comes to the number of people we’ve slept with- the higher the number, the higher the judgment. Why is it that we, mostly women, feel as if we have to conform to the absurd standard society has set for us to avoid the risk of other people looking down their noses? Since when did somebody else’s opinion matter that much? If you are comfortable within yourself and with your sexuality, and enjoy gland-to-gland combat- providing you are causing no harm to yourself or anyone else- who really cares?
As a singleton, surely it’s your right to go out, have as many cocktails as happy hour can get you, and shack up with a handsome, unattached stranger? No one is getting hurt by this harmless process yet, somehow, people are shaming it every day. The Walk of SHAME. Has Amber Rose not taught you anything? Have you not realised that this is 2017, and judging people for their sex lives is old fashioned, petty and basically just pathetic? Does the phrase ‘minding your own business’ mean nothing to you? My mother always taught me to not say anything, should I not have anything nice to say. I urge you, judgers and belittlers, to take this on board should you be fortunate enough to see a young person, in the prime of their life, making their way home after a night of shagging. If like me, however, you fully support a person’s right to their own sexual choices, help them turn their Walk of Shame into a Stride of Pride. No one should be defined by the amount of sex they do or don’t have. There is a huge double standard surrounding this- the age old tale of a man being pat on the back for his high number of conquests, whilst women with the same number are scorned. This begs the question- if men are allowed to sleep with more people than women, then who the hell are they sleeping with?
Though this is undeniably unfair, slut-shaming is a real thing that unfortunately happens all too often. Just remember: your body, your choices. Save yourself the effort of having to justify them. The sexual landscape of our world has been steadily changing for quite some time now and at this point, sex and dating are mutually ambiguous terms. People are having more sex on the first date, sex before they even start dating, and casual partners and hook-ups can be found in just about any licensed bar in the country. I’m not arguing that people should be going out and boning every other person they meet but if that happens to tickle your fancy, then you should be free to make that decision without the pressure of being judged by society. If we are so forward-thinking about various other sexual topics- why am I having to write about what’s not ok to say and do? If two consensual adults decide to have sex, it’s important to notice that there are in fact two people involved, and if one of them is immediately going to shame the other afterward, then that person has a clear misunderstanding of intercourse in the 21st century. With today’s contraceptives and general knowledge of human anatomy, there is absolutely no reason why women should be seen any differently when it comes to being sexually active.
Society puts so much pressure on sex as both the be-all and the end-all, and this pressure is increased exponentially for women. We must be virgins but still sexy, the girl next door but the femme fatale, ‘a lady in the street but a freak in the bed’. There is so much pressure to put out and have sex and also not to have it, that it’s no wonder that women grow up disenchanted and confused about their sexuality. There is no such thing as an experienced virgin, and yet that is what we, as women, are expected to be. I know many, many women who enjoy casual sex with multiple partners. From coming into contact with these women over the last 20 years, I can tell you for sure that nobody fits a sexual stereotype. Sexual stereotypes do not exist. They were fabricated to sustain and perpetuate a little power structure called patriarchy- and it’s no secret that this ‘structure’, leaves no room for diverse realities. Living in today’s opinionated society, people will always disagree with whatever you are doing- even if that is volunteering for world peace.
Try not to give a single fuck about what other people say or think about you- it really says more about them than it does you. So pick your undies off the floor, don your heels from the night before and take yourself home. Walk that street like it’s a runway because today, like any other day, you are a single, confident, sassy woman who will not be shamed by anyone.
Turn your ‘Walk of Shame’ into the Stride of Pride.