Why You Need To Stop Slut Shaming The Bachelorette

During the past season of ABC’s The Bachelorette, I took to watching all the juicy episodes in my living room before bed. One night, my dad came into the room, sat on the couch, saw JoJo kissing all those (delicious) men, and said, “Well, she’s a slut.”

I was immediately taken aback, and just had to dig deeper. I asked all the questions I could, like: “Okay but there’s the Bachelor, is he not a slut?” and “Men do this in real life, but women can’t?” and “Why would you say that in front of me, a woman, who is trying to find love and make her way in the world?

It ultimately came down to my dad – who has been with the same woman (my mom) since he was 16 – saying, “Well, ladies are supposed to act ladylike and men, you know, can be like a dude and they are supposed to have multiple partners. It’s been that way since the cavemen.”

This article is not to make my dad out to be the bad guy. He was just unfortunately the man with whom I could have an adult conversation about this particular topic. I’m grateful that my dad and I could have a mature, calm conversation about this because it was so fascinating to hear about these things from his point of view.

And look, my dad didn’t say these things to upset the feminist in me, or the feminist in all of you. He was just stating his opinion and understanding of life, and I deeply respect that.

Here’s what I don’t respect:

I don’t respect society’s way of teaching men that it’s okay to sleep around but that women have to ‘save’ their virginity for “the one.” I don’t respect the vision of men that paints them to be the leaders of sexual relationships and rulers of women. I don’t respect that women can’t sleep around as they wish, and if they do, they’re called vile names and disrespected. I don’t respect men who go around boasting about all the hot chicks they banged last weekend, nor do I respect the women who do the same.

I don’t want to hear about anyone’s sex life, really, unless it’s a close friend, and unless I ask. I don’t want to hear about how good they were, how long they lasted, etc, unless I ask. I don’t want you to just start blabbing about it. I’m nosy, so if we’re friends, I’ll probably ask, but other than that – just keep it to yourself. And besides, it’s not fair to your sexual partner. What happens in the bedroom, should stay in the bedroom.

But I do wish women had the freedom to explore their relationships and their sexuality without fear of judgment from other males, or even females.

If men can sleep around, women should be able to do that too.

If men can openly discuss their wild weekends with women to their buddies, then women can too.

We should let women explore their bodies, minds, likes, and dislikes before we force them to settle down.

I was raised to be polite, to be tasteful, to have good manners, and to never hide who I am. But that shouldn’t be something that stops me from talking about sex with my friends or dating men or even sleeping with them. Being ladylike should be synonymous with funny, adventurous, generous, and kind.

Ladylike shouldn’t have to be synonymous with “waiting until marriage.”

All this is not to say: let’s go out and have sex tonight. I know both men and women who are well into college and are virgins because they’re waiting. And I applaud them. I also know men and women who sleep around. And I applaud them too.

Just because we want to hold men and women to the same standards doesn’t mean we’re trying to feminize men or make women more masculine. We’re not trying to take away men’s ability to sleep around all they want. We’re just trying to let women do the same.

Instead of slut shaming the Bachelorettes, let’s let them find love. They may be doing it on reality TV which, okay, is a tad sad, but they’re doing it. I for one can’t wait to find my true love. And I know people who just want to live and sleep around and enjoy it. Why should it matter what anyone does? 

If we have to sleep with a few men and/or women to find love, that should be okay. If we have to sleep with a few men and/or women just because we want to, it’s fun, and that’s our goddamn right as people, that should be okay too.

After all, you have to kiss a ton of frogs before that happy ending.  

Featured Image via The Bachelorette.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. In most societies, women are forced to marry without exploring themselves just to prevent them from bragging about how many guys they slept with. Being ladylike means being restricted and as a result of that, female suicide rates are high. And for countries like Latin America, Asia, and Middle East having their own versions of The Bachelorette, there would be slut shaming from critics like in India’s version for instance due to the fact that women in those countries are restricted.

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