Why Slut Shaming Needs to Stop

Definition of the word slut—a woman who has many casual sexual partners. Yes, you read that correctly. A woman. Of all the words ladies get to call their own, it’s this lovely gem. Of course, it shouldn’t come as such a surprise that there’s a derogatory word specific to just women who enjoy sex with different people. Keep in mind, this is a world where women are blamed for their own rape and are strangled to death by their brothers for posting provocative selfies online.

Nonetheless, using this kind of language to put women down and shame them into fitting some prehistoric, biblical mold is not acceptable. For one thing, there are an astonishing 8,000 nerve endings in the clitoris (the only organ which sole purpose is for sexual pleasure) versus only half as much at 4,000 on the tip of a penis. So technically, sex is even more pleasurable for women than men, yet it’s frowned upon for women to enjoy the act.

Despite it being completely natural, this one pesky, little word continues to stand in the way of women’s sexuality everywhere. Calling women of any age hurtful names and judging their most of actions is not okay on any level. To put it simply, it’s no one else’s business what an adult, consenting woman chooses to do in the privacy of her bedroom (or anywhere else she chooses for that matter.)

Besides being cruel and detrimental to women’s self-esteem, slut-shaming contributes to the oppression of women. Young high school girls are sent home from school for wearing clothes that will “distract the boys.” This not only implies young girls’ educations are not worth as much as those of boys, but it also blatantly sexualizes women from a very young age. It teaches them that their bodies are things to be ashamed of and should be hidden—that they’re nothing more than something for hormonal young boys to ogle.

But after instilling such backwards ideas in the fragile, young minds of girls, society then proceeds to shame them for using the very bodies they made sexual objects in the first place.

Yes, being a young woman in this day and age is no easy feat. Instead of being so quick to pass judgement, critics need to relax and realize that it’s the twenty-first century now—women have minds of their own and are totally capable of deciding what to do with their bodies. As long as it’s safe, women having and enjoying sex isn’t hurting anyone. Sex isn’t melting the polar ice caps. Getting it on isn’t widening the hole in the ozone layer. Banging doesn’t cause famines. Fornication isn’t leading to the extinction of beautiful wildlife.

So, what’s the big deal? Why do so many people feel a need to get involved? I can understand some folks may still harbor some old school ways of thinking, and such negative notions of promiscuity were intended to protect young women back in the day. But things aren’t like that anymore—a woman’s virginity does not equal her honor or value.

Sex is one of the most natural things humans can do, both men and women, whether it’s with one person or 100. Having multiple partners is just another way to explore your sexuality and figure out what does it for you in the bedroom. There’s no shame in that. So let’s everyone quit it with the slut-shaming.

This single, flour-letter word yields the power to make women feel ashamed of their biological urges. It limits females’ social lives and dictates their attire. It gives judgmental people the ability to label and group women in a critical manner. Because everyone, even women, allow it. Part of what needs to happen in order for slut shaming to come to a screeching halt is un-arming this loaded “S” word. Yes, it’s an ugly, offensive word and most women wouldn’t appreciate it being used to describe them. But it doesn’t have to be. “Slut” doesn’t have to be such a deep cutting word. All it references are women who simply choose to partake in sexual acts with multiple partners. It should be something to be embraced. No stigma. No negativity.

Another important step would be for women everywhere to stop using the word against other women. Women calling other women sluts in a derogatory fashion is the worst kind of slut shaming there is. It may not seem like that big of a deal, but such harsh judgement of a woman coming from another only makes it even easier for everyone else to do it, too. Instead of hopping on the bandwagon and throwing the filthy word around so freely over skimpy clothes and one night stands, women need to band together and take a stand against this incredibly outdated double standard. This ridiculous word and what it has come to mean only has as much power as women choose to give it.

Don’t give everyone else the right to degrade women with a stupid label by using it. Don’t be the girl to stare and gossip about that other girl who got laid last night. Be the girl to go over and give her a high five instead. Celebrate your body. Celebrate your sexuality. Celebrate yourself and your freedom to do as you please. Celebrate womanhood with fellow women. There’s no shame in sex and shame on those who say otherwise.

  1. This is a real grey area and needs more addressing than simply saying the word slut has to stop as the word slut has very different connotations depending on it’s context. When men use the word to demean women and reduce them or use it as an excuse to be overly familiar. Or even as an excuse for assault there is undoubtedly a problem. But is the WORD itself to blame or the people involved? I know of quite a few people who love to call each other sluts .. some friends even call each other sluts. It’s meant in the nicest possible way.

    I think we have to realize that there are many cultural forces at play here governing women’s sexuality and how it is perceived. Here are the ones I can think of ..

    1. Men’s desire to use and dominate women. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. Back when we were animals rape was basically par for the course for our species. It’s why it’s such a huge problem now. There isn’t a man alive who isn’t tempted by the fantasy of simply throwing of societies shackles and walking on the wild side. But we are not JUST animals anymore. And any man worth his salt knows that this is a betrayal of humanity as civilized creatures. It’s a betrayal of men and women both.

    2. Women’s jealousy of prettier women. Nobody should kid themselves into thinking that pretty women are often labeled as sluts by their peers. Because simply attracting male gaze when you aren’t must mean that they are secretly sucking every dick they come across.

    3. Women’s fear of sex. (Not an insult, Sex IS scary for a woman. Men are more physically powerful, More dominating, Women’s bodies are easily hurt during sex and there is the risk of pregnancy.)

    4. Young men’s fear of being outed as sexually inept .. Because young men ARE sexually inept. Women are complicated. We need to learn you a while before we’re any good with you.

    5. The distinction between sexual promiscuity and infidelity. Let me be CRYSTAL clear on this. Sexual promiscuity should be ok is ok and will always be okay with me. In fact .. It’s generally okay with most men.

    Infidelity is NOT.

    If you’re the kind of woman that starts sleeping with the next monogamous boyfriend two weeks before breaking up with the last Or someone who tires to sleep with people’s husbands when they are drunk then you are absolutely an awful person. If you are the kind of woman who sleeps with any number of men, Who themselves aren’t in monogamous relationships with their full knowledge of the situation. Then that’s just fine. Bang 500 men in one night and I will just be impressed. Break your boyfriend’s heart because you “think you deserve better” And I will rightly shun you.

    Break up FIRST, Fuck other guy AFTER.

    Of course the same applies to men. Including the part about promiscuity. If a guy picks you up in a nightclub and sleeps with you it doesn’t mean he’s your boyfriend. Even if the sex was amazing. And if you are the kind of dick that sees prostitutes behind your girlfriend or wife’s back you should probably be spayed for the good of humanity.

    A lot of the confusion arises because the word slut is often applied to both kinds of women. Sometimes in a good or bad way depending on who’s saying it.

    Honestly I don’t think the word is important. People would just find another way to say it. The behaviors around that word and the understanding of the social and cultural cue’s that create these destructive behaviors is the harder, Truer path and the only think likely to actually accomplish anything. because getting rid of the word slut is going to do about as much for women as getting rid of the word n*gger did for black people.

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