Punishing Girls for Pleasing Guys
Why are girls so often punished for pleasing guys?
Girls grow up to learn that both men and society like a sexy look. And then they comply and get slut-shamed.
They grow up to discover sex. They think it’s fun — or not: 43% of young American women have experienced sexual dysfunction. Yet they learn that guys want sex, and some feel pressured to be nice and give it to them. But if they do, they may be punished. And by the way, don’t expect to get pleasured, yourself.
That’s what San Jose Mercury News journalist, Sharon Noguchi, found in her investigation of Silicon Valley high school culture. All these years and the double standard remains alive and well, even in the progressive San Francisco Bay Area. As she put it:
Teenage girls who are socialized to act and appear sexually enticing find their quest for popularity and fun sometimes morphing instantly into horror.
Lisie Sabbag wrote for Palo Alto High’s Verde Magazine her senior year. Investigating campus rape culture, she observed,
Teens see this party and lifestyle where guys go out and have sex and girls sexualize themselves… Since we see it on TV, in our music and on Facebook, we think that’s the way we’re supposed to be.
Overfelt High School administrator, Monica Schneider adds,
We’ve really gone backward in the sexual revolution. Girls see their role as serving men and it is expected on a first date that they participate in sexual behavior.
If girls feel they are not ready and say no, word gets around campus that they are frigid or uptight. Alternatively, sometimes when girls do give in, later they feel really crappy about themselves.
Especially when people guilt them via text and social media.
Some patterns are so strong, and so taken for granted as to be invisible. And then young women follow the social imperative even when it hurts.
Of course, facing a no-win situation — damned if you do, damned if you don’t — makes it that much worse.
Guys, if you want sex stop shaming girls. Girls, if you want empowerment, sexual and otherwise, stop shaming each other.
Posted on June 20, 2014, in feminism, psychology, rape and sexual assault, sex and sexuality, sexism, women and tagged double bind, feminism, psychology, rape culture, sex and sexuality, sexism, slut shaming, women. Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.