The unapologetic wave that has washed over women recently has had many identities: “Did I stutter”, “sorry not sorry”, “I said what I said” and the 2018 version: “No more putting ‘lol’ at the end of my statements in 2k18. I said what I said.” The motto is a symbol of resistance against vulnerability, ownership of our own narratives and a successful endeavor to banish the dark cloud that’s been cast over women. We stopped caring what other people thought or felt about our behaviors. We stopped holding ourselves back and that’s a feeling to celebrate, to rub in people’s faces and to hold our heads back while laughing loudly.
Being unapologetic isn’t a game. It requires you to acknowledge what you can and cannot tolerate on your journey to creating your positive space. For example, I consider it bold when I ask for more workload at work or decide to give my professor honest feedback, or when I call out a loved one’s toxic behavior. I’ve been reprimanded for speaking my truth in many forms. The responses aren’t always ideal but I’m aware that speaking my truth doesn’t come without social sacrifice. That’s the price of being unapologetic.
Too many times I’ve been told to calm down during a passionate discussion where I spewed intellectual word lava too hot for my male or white counterparts to handle. Facial expressions of shock and embarrassment during these encounters warned me to settle down. I always feel that at this point they’re more focused on my demeanor than my words. Turns out I wasn’t alone in my experiences, Jully Black experienced the same thing. She was accused by Jeanne Beker of attacking her during a Canada Read’s debate *eye roll*. When Black responded to this accusation in an article, she says it became clear that, black women “are forced to silence ourselves before white women, who weaponize their fragility by defaulting to victim mode when faced with a black woman carrying knowledge and understanding.” This is a common tactic to undermine our truth.
Speaking our truth on any topic is so important, especially with our sexuality. My shameless self first manifested when my father sat me down as a teenager to talk about boys. He said, “They only want one thing” and mentally, I responded, “But I want that one thing too.” It seemed the idea of women only being interested in sex was a mythical notion. I never said this to him out loud but I was vocal about it everywhere else. Men don’t respond well to females’ loose inhibitions. And of course they wouldn’t, since it threatens the grip of our dainty vaginas on their generously large penises (myth btw). Our sexual casualness is either seen as unnatural or a catalyst for whatever negative consequences comes our way (usually at their hands).
When I first gained a sense of unapologetic-ness, I didn’t let the terms “slut” and “whore” define me and decided anyone who dared to categorize me wasn’t a person to be around. I was horny and eager to test my sexual boundaries, and I continue to do so in safe places. By safe place I mean; with people I trust, with people who respect me and in places I physically feel safe. With these people I express concerns, curiosities and debunk myths. In exchange, I gain orgasms and insight.
I’ve learned to embrace my curiosity and release it in the social mediasphere in writing, through Instagram stories and with polls that lead to in-depth discussions in my DMs. We already know we shouldn’t apologize for who we are but it’s a struggle to truly envelop ourselves in that mentality. Especially when you have phrases like, “a key that can open many locks is a master key, but a lock that can be opened by many keys is a crappy lock,” to dehumanize women whose sexuality is limitless. It’s a way for authority figures to value women by the elasticity of their vaginas and impose restrictive boundaries on us. But the thing about boundaries is: “they don’t merely manage our unruly wants but can choke them off until each of us is a law-abiding, cold-blooded carapace, or a liar,” according to Kate Bolick.
I cannot tolerate lies, especially to the self. It’s a selfish habit I indulge in to cleanse my conscience and my space. Being in a space where I can be my purest self is what matters to me most but I didn’t realize that until I started to embrace my purest sexuality. The only way to be unapologetic, is to do so to serve your sanity.