In part, this was because I’m trying to focus on school and haven’t slept over 4 hours in weeks. I just don’t have the juice for it right now.
But as well, there had been something about the job eating at me since the moment I took it. Growing up in a culture where feminists are portrayed as ‘harpy bitches,’ I had come to consider myself post-feminism. This ideology was a toxic mixture of misinformation and self-loathing. I thought that it didn’t matter if I pranced around in booty shorts hitting up drunk men to enter a happy hour raffle if it was “just to pay the bills”.
Now, I support a woman’s right to prance in whatever the hell she wants, sleep with as many men as she wants and use her sexuality as she sees fit because I believe in personal choice. But that’s just it. By brushing off the implications of my job as promo girl, I was neither embracing, nor rejecting this sex-positivism (or whatever you’d like to call it) and avoiding making any choice at all.
I realized that using my body as a prop (not meant in a derogatory way- do whatchu gotta do) made me incredibly uncomfortable. I pushed those feelings away and tried to convince myself that womanhood (rather than girlhood) was really being able to let yourself be objectified without it affecting your self worth.
The other day I realized that this is utter and complete horseshit.
I mean when I said it aloud to myself I was shocked at how far from my girl-power, liberal upbringing I had strayed.
“So… Yes, I feel like a piece of meat being leered at for a living, but that’s womanhood! You’re a real grown up woman now that you can get your ass grabbed in public without feeling violated!”
I realized that there were some women who could do jobs like that without feeling objectified- and I am a big believer in ‘you do you’-
But I am not one of those women. Whether it was going through adolescence without a mother, a string of self-worth destroying boyfriends, just a more private ideology surrounding my own body, or whatever- I’m just not.
Feminism, for me, is about a woman’s’ right to personal choice and their support of other women’s’ choices. I decided that the job was counter to everything this exploration into feminism symbolizes for me- radical self-love, ownership of my body, and learning to embrace femininity without equating it with weakness.
So I quit.