Dear Not That Kind Of Girl,
So yesterday I claimed I wasn’t “that kind of girl” but the day before I was proclaiming I was a Slut, as there seems to be some incongruous value judgements going on there I think I need to unpick this further with you. I think you are the best person to ask. You not being that kind of girl and all.
So if I truly believe women should be able to love who they want, have sex with who they want, dress how they want, then I shouldn’t really be having “not that kind of girl” issues.
What do I mean by “That kind of girl”? I suppose I meant one who would have sex with a lorry driver in a service station, which then implies I am judging women for doing that. Which I am not. If a single woman wants to have consensual no strings attached sex with a lorry driver in a service station then she should absolutely fill her boots and I would probably be rather impressed and a bit in awe of her confidence (In fact my best friend – who is possibly “that kind of girl?” has enjoyed sneaky sex in a lorry at work a few times. Thus it turns out I know rather more than I should about the logistics of sex in a lorry having missed my own chance at it! ).
However I think I was directing my “not that kind of girl” comment at the lorry driver. He may have encountered women before who would willingly have sex with him in the services, but had I pulled into the services with him genuinely I would have been wanting a coffee and a getting to know you chat first, I’m shy like that
plus I hadn’t shaved my legs and was wearing a panty liner, this being back in the day I used to make an effort . The thing is I’m not sure that coffee and a chat was the deal on the table in that situation, and I fear that, had I pulled over but then not put out, I may have been in serious danger of being forced into doing something I didn’t want to. Obviously I am not trying to label all lorry drivers as potential rapists, however given that he turned agressive when I legged it after not pulling over, then I think my instincts in that particular situation were absolutely right not to pull over.
I appreciate flirting on the M6 is a very unusual situation and not one there are etiquette rules for, plus the added not being able to talk or swap phone numbers or do any of the usual “getting to know you type foreplay” meant you would have to have a certain level of confidence to enter into that situation to possibly have spontaneous sober sex with a complete stranger and deal with all the possible consequences. I’m not that confident kind of girl. Maybe that is what I meant by “that kind of girl”?
I also need to transpose the M6 story into another story along similar lines but where I did end up in a dangerous situation:
We are travelling in the same direction at the same time (though not a motorway- we were walking drunkenly home through the park), there is flirting and thanks to the drink, we end up skipping home holding hands. On my part I genuinely think I have made a new friend, I don’t particularly fancy him, he offers me to go back to his place for a drink, I am clear it is just a drink , he agrees, I go up to his place, have the drink. He keeps trying it on. I keep refusing. He starts playing mind games to try and get me to stay, I feel sorry for him, he keeps trying it on. I stay longer than I should, he keeps trying it on, I sober up and think “fuck this!”. I leave. He opens window and shouts “here’s that fucking drink” and throws a bottle at my head! Thankfully it missed.*
So M6 situation- rules were unclear because of the situation but I did what I needed to try and keep safe, but was still shown agression for not “following through”. Latter situation, rules were much clearer but he tried to break them, and at least I was able to stay safe. Thankfully the vast majority of times I have enjoyed a flirty exchange, there has been no heavy price to pay, (because most men are not rapist scum) but I also appreciate how lucky I have been given some situations I have ended up in.
So this brings me back to “not that kind of girl” and being a “slut“. I still want to bring my girls up to be free to wear what they want, fall in love with who they want and have sex with who they want. But that is assuming they are growing up in a society that isn’t full of these value judgements against such women, and is also full of men (and women) who have a complete understanding of the meaning of informed consent. And sadly we are not there. The recent need for slutwalks and Ched Evans Vitriol against the victim have shown us how far from there we are. Also If I am totally honest I would baulk and worry terribly at my daughters heading out in tiny miniskirts and fishnet stockings and suspenders just like my own parents did with me at the height of my gothic phase (what on earth was I thinking!? I wouldn’t even dress like that for a Halloween party now!). I’m terrified that my daughters will experience forms of sexual assault (I know I have been subjected to many an unwanted grope in my lifetime, so sadly it is likely), I know if they do end up being assaulted THEY WILL ABSOLUTELY NOT BE TO BLAME BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WERE WEARING OR THEIR BEHAVIOUR, the fault, the blame, will be entirely the perpetrator’s -for BREAKING THE LAW and not understanding and respecting that how a woman dresses or acts does not mean she is “asking for it” at all. EVER. End of.
So it turns out dear “not that kind of girl”, you are absolutely my kind of girl after all. You be any kind of girl you want to be, so long as you are happy and not breaking any laws, or deliberately breaking any hearts (accidentally doesn’t count), and I will always try to support you as best I can and I will always believe you.
Lots of love
*P.S I reported the guy who threw a bottle at my head to the police and I was incredibly impressed with how seriously they took it. Turned out he possibly had form for that kind of behaviour and although ultimately no charges were brought, thank you Policewoman for pointing out that it shouldn’t matter how drunk I was or how stupid I was to go back to a strange bloke’s flat, it was his refusal to listen to me saying no that was actually the issue and could have led to criminal charges.