“If men and young boys are allowed to explore their sexuality and be sexual beings, then women and young girls should definitely feel like they can too.”
Sex. Orgasms. They’re very natural and normal things, extraordinary in fact. So why are they considered inappropriate or taboo for women to talk about?
The problem lies deep rooted in our society, with a fear and stigma for women with regards to sex and pleasure. Sex has always very much been a man’s game, with pornography and television creating unrealistic expectations of sex for viewers and especially young people developing and exploring their sexuality. It creates the illusion that a man’s pleasure is more important than a woman’s and reduces her sexual encounters to either being an ‘object’ for a man, or for reproductive purposes only. Pornography prioritises men’s pleasure and this in turn is translated into society, the woman is purely there for the man’s entertainment and therefore is lost in translation within the act of sex.
So what’s changed? Women are now taking control whether it’s manually or by introducing sex toys and taking their pleasure into their own hands. The world is changing and evolving, and it is presenting a different view on sexual pleasure for females. More people are speaking up and owning their sexuality, an increase in female influencers especially.
Charlotte Price, a body positive and fashion influencer on Instagram, said: “I think pornography has deep patriarchal problems amongst 99% of the porn available online. With women being submissive, lack of female orgasms, men only receiving pleasure or reaching climax – it is evident that there is a huge gender bias in pornography and there needs to be a stronger focus on women receiving pleasure, which I think should be addressed earlier on in life, potentially in sex education in schools.”
Women have been submissive and not been able to explore themselves for fear of being shamed or called derogatory terms such as ‘slut.’
Charlotte said that it’s terms like these that stops women from “feeling proud and happy with their sexuality and sexual drive – it is nothing to be ashamed of. Just because a woman loves sex doesn’t mean she’s a slut, likewise if a men talks or love sex he isn’t considered a slut.”
“I think it’s important to destigmatize topics so that young girls can be proud of who they are without hiding away. If men and young boys are allowed to explore their sexuality and be sexual beings, then women and young girls should definitely feel like they can too.
It will help women become more confident in themselves and allow young girls to grow up with less worry, comparison and shame from doing normal things, like self pleasure.”
The emerging of television shows that are normalising sex for women such as the incredible ‘Fleabag’ and ‘I Hate Suzie’ are a stepping stone in paving the way for complete normalisation of female pleasure and sex in general. Billie Piper and Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s characters are relatable and the shows feature multiple female masturbation scenes. The introduction of other shows such as ‘Normal People’ depict much more realistic sexual scenes between their main characters exploring their sexualities and falling in love. The show was praised highly for its realism in its sexual depictions.
Charlotte said: “I really wish I had a role model or someone who was discussing more controversial, taboo topics online to look up to.
I also hope more people in the public eye speak up proudly about these issues to help destigmatize and become positive role models for individuals who may be struggling or scared to speak about their sexual experiences.”
Things are changing. Television is changing and more people are speaking up and breaking the glass ceiling. It’s time for women to take control.