“How do you disentangle the biological facts of attraction and even lust from the more culturally manufactured patterns of sexually objectifying women in all contexts, everywhere all the time?” asks Cristen Conger of Stuff Mom Never Told You.
“Pretty simple: Don’t treat women like Barbie dolls.”
For anyone (man or woman) who doesn’t totally understand what “sexual objectification” means, Conger is here to help. In under three minutes, she delivers a crash course in what it means to treat people — specifically, woman people — like sex objects.
Conger breaks down the key difference between thinking someone is super duper sexy and sexually objectifying that person. Mostly, it comes down to autonomy and agency — and making sure that you are taking into account the wants and needs of the person you have the hots for.
“Much like women who are sexually objectified, Barbie has no autonomy,” Conger says. “Barbie can’t talk back and express whether she wants to play with you or not… And as an object, she’s interchangeable. She’s just a collection of plastic body parts, not a body that makes up a collective person.”
And, really, isn’t it way sexier when the person you’re into — a human being with fully-formed desires, characteristics and interests — can express that he or she thinks you’re sexy right back?