Stop Talking About My SELF-Esteem

I was sitting out on a bar patio, sipping on a beer and people-watching when I heard a group of guys kick up a particularly impassioned conversation about a female friend of theirs. Apparently, she was going to go home with some guy she had just met inside, which they didn’t agree with and thus began the slutslutslut whorewhorewhore banter. I was going to turn my attention back to the other side of the patio where a grown man had been trying to light his cigarette for roughly ten minutes when I heard one say, “She’s cool and everything, but it’s like, have some self-respect, you know?”

No, boys, I don’t know. Someone really does need to explain to me why in this society we assume that when girls act in a sexually promiscuous way, they must have some deeply internalized self-esteem issue driving them to deviant slutty behavior.

I’ve been given this speech before from guy friends of mine. One even gave me the lecture on why I needed to act right and respect myself more while his hand was confidently moving closer and closer to my ass, “The real reason you have so many problems with guys is because you don’t respect yourself enough.”

Really, Sir Gropes Too Much, or is the problem that YOU don’t respect me?

You see, I think the problem that most guys wrestle with when dealing with me or any like-minded females in our various states of sexual liberation is that they can never decide if they respect us. After all, we don’t all fit easily into the ‘good girl’ mold that society tells them is the ideal, and while we do tend to intrigue them with our confidence and loud-mouth debauchery, it’s normally easier for them to shove us inside a box and color us all as whores rather than dealing with the fact that we make them uncomfortable.

And for me, this predictably dull pattern of cowardice, in turn, makes me respect them less because what actually makes them uncomfortable is the fact that I am dictating what I do with my body sexually. Not them. This especially becomes annoying when they seem to congratulate our mutual guy friends for precisely the same things, without judging or assuming that their ‘daddy issues’ are contributing to how many people they sleep with.

If I were a guy, they wouldn’t be assuming that my sexual history is a dirty reflection of my damaged self-worth. Hell, they wouldn’t be assuming that my self-worth is damaged at all – probably the exact opposite, in fact. Because for guys, hooking up is something to be proud of and yet girls are still held to this ridiculous idea that we are defined by what we do with our bodies.

Actually, it gets more ridiculous. We’re actually being defined by what men do to our bodies. And despite equal participation on both parties, the boy gets slapped on the back and the girl gets asked why she doesn’t have any self-respect.

Takes two to tango but only one to be called a slut, am I right?

Listen, boys at the bar, what you’re essentially saying is that your friend derives her value, first and foremost, from what she does with her body. But maybe you should ask yourselves why you’re so willing to help be a wingman for your male buddies and then turn your nose up when a female friend does the exact same thing they’re trying to do.

Katt Williams said it best, “Bitch, it’s called SELF-esteem.”

Stop assuming that we define our entire self-worth based on what we do sexually. There’s a hell of a lot more to me than my body and what it can do for you.

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