The photo of Donald Trump signing a ban on funding to organizations involved in abortions (even if just by providing information!) has been all over the net this week. That image makes me think of a recent post in a closed, all-female Facebook network – a post about abortion but also, on a deeper level, about our views on female sexuality.
One of the members of the network wrote a very naked post about her visit to an abortion clinic. She had made friends with the girl in the bed next to hers, and as they opened up to each other, it turned out that they were both there for the same reason: they had been convinced to accept sexual intercourse without protection. Both girls had felt uncomfortable, unwilling, and pressured, but had in the end given in to the man they were with. Now the girls found themselves dealing with the aftermaths of unprotected sex: not only taking that test, finding a doctor, taking time of work, enduring bleedings and pain, but also living with the choice they made.
Girl’s Globe is a global forum and some of the views and opinions of our readers, and even members of our network, on sexuality surely differ from mine. I come from a culture where sex with no strings attached is accepted; we even learn in school how to use a condom, and why it is important to do so. So, we do learn how to practice safe sex. However, what we don’t learn is how to tackle matters like pressure, responsibility and the opinions and norms of the society. Those opinions and norms are almost always linked to the female sexuality, outlining and controlling it: be sexy, but not over the top, enjoy sex, but not too much.
Sex is still almost exclusively viewed and discussed from the male perspective. How about female sexuality and our relation to our own pleasure? Accepting female pleasure is the first step towards understanding that sex is for women as much as for men. Teaching girls not only to say no, but also to demand that which actually makes them say yes, is giving them the key to their own pleasure.
We also have the right to state our conditions – not only for having, but for enjoying sex.
Trump has, again and again, made blunt, ignorant, and plain-out scary comments about women. Their looks, weight, figure… The example set is not exactly an admirable one. Today’s boys – tomorrow’s men – need to learn to see women as their equals. They need to understand why pressuring their partner into not using a condom is not ok. That in sex, the woman isn’t only there to please him, but that he is also, just as much, there to please her.
What about the two girls in the abortion clinic? When leaving the clinic, they agreed on that never again would they give the power over their bodies to another person. And one of them, she wrote a Facebook post about it, a post that was read by about 2,000 other young women, and hopefully that post will make at least one girl out there confident enough to state her own conditions when it comes to her body – and her pleasure.