I’m outing my shadow today.
For most of my childhood I heard the word SLUT used. Not towards me, but it was directed at women in my presence. Women were called SLUTS, and women needed to be perfect. They needed to look amazing and sexy, but also cook and clean a make a lot of money to be worthy. I saw posters of women in bathing suits or nothing at all. I wasn’t part of the narrative, because I was a girl and a daughter and therefore different, but other women were. I heard comments daily about other women, what they looked like and what was “wrong with them.” The only women that got praise were perfect, but known for their bodies and what they looked like. Hot women were worthy and women that had “let themselves go” were not. Average was not okay.
I can see now where this all came from and the hurt and generational pain this was caused by, but as a little kid this is confusing.
I wanted to be the opposite. Being a SLUT was bad, being perfect was good. This word has followed me forever, and it makes me cringe. It hasn’t neccesarily been directed at me, but I have internalized it as a bad thing. It was used to degrade rather than uplift. Women are more than our bodies, and what we choose to do with it. Men can be one way and women cannot. Men are PLAYBOYS, women are SLUTS.
Part of owning what shadows you is to hear these words that make you cringe and trigger you, and own them. What about it offends you?
How do you own what triggers you? Most of what women go through is from societies view of us. We have been raised to be ornamental versus instrumental. We have been raised to care about how we look and what people think of us.
If I heard a women being called a SLUT now I would ask, why? What is she doing that makes you say that? How can men act one way and women can’t? Why do we use this derogatory word to describe women in the first place?
DO you have a shadow word?