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  • Rebecca Stark Thornberry

Hey, Slut!


This is a sacred piece of my soul that I am sharing for any woman who has ever been called a 'SLUT'. I hate that word, and I let it define me for many years. This is my call to action for any of you who have the stain of that word stamped on your soul.

I love you. You are Worthy. Today, yesterday, always. xxRebecca


Hey, Slut.


The first time I was called that, I felt it like a weighted punch straight to the gut. What did it mean? Why would someone call me that? I was simultaneously exposed, labeled, and shamed. I believed it. I believed it was true.


I was young, too unstable in my own worthiness to shield myself. And I was too aware of my own wayward sexuality to shore up enough evidence to the contrary.


I don’t know at what age I learned to use beauty for currency, but it was early.


Like a starving child, I traded my dignity for crumbs. One look, one touch, 10 minutes of attention. All mine. One bite. All gone. Still hungry...who’s next?


It doesn’t matter if the other girls say nasty things about me. It doesn’t matter if the boys don’t respect me. It doesn’t matter if it’s painful. I’m famished. I need something. I need to eat. I don’t know how to stop. I don’t know what I’m doing. Impulsive. Instinctive. Like heroin addiction. Just make the emptiness go away for a breath.


The loneliness is unlike any other. What is supposed to be the most intimate act between two human beings becomes a jagged reflection of the belief that no matter what you do, you are not worthy of love. You offer yourself up as a sacrifice, placing your body on the altar, drowning out the voices begging you to say NO, pleading with you to stand up, clothe yourself, and walk away. Someone wants you. Someone is choosing you. Just for a moment. You need it. You need to feel it. You need to be wanted. You’ll do anything for a fix. You pretend he cares. You pretend you are the most amazing thing he’s ever had. Ignoring the query, how can I feel so powerful and powerless at the same time?


My soul looks like a crack addict. Sunken eyes, bruised, toothless, hair falling out in chunks. Malnourished.


I’m too ashamed to let anyone see me so ravaged.


So I spend the next 20 years spiritually bypassing my withered heart. Get saved. Multiple times. Get whole. Get clean. I try to purify my insides with diets and cleanses. I turn over every rock of imperfection. Obsess over every character flaw. See me. Fix me. Get all the grossness out. Every prayer is me begging for mercy. Make me worthy. Make me pure. I want a different story. It’s not my fault. It’s all my fault. Every day is a new chance to be shown how I need to change. If I’m forgiven, why do I feel so dirty? Still hiding.


Slut.


I hate that word. It’s cruel. It’s cancer.


But it’s just a word. And I’ve decided to change its meaning. I’m updating the definition. No more will women identify as filthy and used. No more will they see themselves as unworthy. No more will this word be used to degrade and demean. We will take this cultural trash talk and turn it into treasure.


Hey, Slut.


I’m redefining you.

It’s not who you are.

You will no longer sell your soul for a scrap of attention. You will never again beg for crumbs by spreading your legs. There is no more hiding. No more pretending that you don’t care, that you don’t have desires, that you don’t need anything. You will stop believing that sex is currency and that you must spend it to feel alive. No more will you assess your worth by how much attention you receive from the opposite sex or by how you measure up against the other girls in the room.

Never again will you believe that your heart is less valuable or sacred. It is the end of relying on your body to keep you from starving. The time spent believing that your value is measured by how much you are desired is over.



You will take your rightful place at the table. You will sit with your spine tall and head held high. You will take your time carefully looking over the menu. You will know what your heart desires and you will choose that. You will look around you at the others seated and connect as an equal, sharing your thoughts and laughing with ease. You will know that the things you did for love were just that. You were made for love. You ARE love. And that was never wrong.


See, your heart is more tender than most. You.


And then, out of the corner of your eye, you will see her. That girl, a Slut. She’s one of us. She’s famished, and trying to appear unshaken as the other women are throwing daggers, whispering nasty things about her. The men are licking their lips. But you, you make gentle eye contact with her. You call her over and pat the space next to you as you scoot over to make room. You give her a wink and hand her the menu. And together you dine as equals, the embodiment of female dignity, sharing your hard earned strength and resilience, fiercely holding space at the table for all who are yet to come.




























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