I recently came across a blog post that raised my blood pressure. It was actually a rebuttal to this post that claimed the author was furthering the rape culture in this country by placing the blame on scantily-clad girls instead of raising moral men. I firmly disagree.
I consider myself a conservative feminist. I believe that women are just as capable as men when it comes to pretty much everything (except snakes – I’m a wimp), men can be just as maternal (if not more so) than some women, and that no man/woman is asking to be raped. I believe in having respect for yourself, teaching our children to respect themselves and others, and in sex ed. I don’t believe abstinence only is a realistic choice for everyone, so we need to teach young adults how to protect themselves if they go down another path.
We live in a very sexualized country where things that are not sexual naturally are treated as such and children are engaging in sexual activity at very young ages. Purity has become something that is mocked and “slut shaming” is term used as a weapon against those that encourage young adults to wait and be choosy. Encouraging modesty is “hypocritical” if you didn’t qualify for a white wedding & teaching the next generation to treat their bodies with respect is confused with teaching them to be ashamed of their natural feelings.
We, as women, have gone so far trying to prove that we are equal to men that we lowered ourselves to unacceptable standards in some areas. Today, I read a comment on Facebook where a woman was saying “what’s good for the goose is good for the gander” in regards to adultery. I don’t think this is what women were fighting for when they wanted equal rights. They weren’t saying “let’s get rid of all moral values and use the worst behaviors from some men”. They wanted to be treated with respect instead of as lesser beings than men.
Most of you know I am the mother of 4 young boys (my oldest will be 8 this month) and that my husband works out of state/country. Last year, he was home for less than 60 days. We have spent a lot of time talking about the choices we made when we were younger, why we think we made those choices, and how our parents could have guided us to make different ones. Raising respectful children that will become productive members of society is our goal.
When it comes to my public image (anything that occurs outside alone time with my husband basically) I try to think of it this way: Would I say/do/dress like this in front of my grandparents? If so, I’ll go ahead and say/do/wear it & plaster it all over my social media pages. If not, it’s not going online.
For selfies in the bathroom, in your jammies, etc – don’t post them publicly. If you want to show your friend a new hairstyle you’re thinking about trying tomorrow, Facebook does let you share with just one person. I use that option to share pics of my children & myself that I don’t want public with my husband all the time.
As for those that say we need to teach our boys respect, people generally don’t respect those that have no respect for themselves. We need to teach our children to respect themselves and others. I firmly believe you get back what you put out there. If you act as if you have no value, then others won’t treat you as the valuable person you are. If you want to be respected for who you are, let your character speak for itself & demand the respect you deserve.