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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » will this sexy "trend" turn us into a society of pedophiles?

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Author Topic: will this sexy "trend" turn us into a society of pedophiles?
hunnybunny888
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Usually, when I am removing hair down there, i do some shaving on the bikini line and trim the rest. But today, since I am going to see my bf who I haven't seen in 2 months, and I know he likes it all shaved (though doesnt complain or care much otherwise) I decided to shave it all off. Usually after I trim/shave/etc. down there, i look in the mirror and smile thinking "damn, sexy". And today I was hurrying out of the shower to look in the mirror because I thought, if so many guys ive dated love it, it's gotta be hotter than that. But instead, I found myself standing in front of the mirror and lowering my eyes down there, my 10 year old self reflected back at me. How could that possibly seem sexy to a full grown man? well I guess he has seen it in movies, porn, tv, and has come to associate it with sexy.
I start to lotion up all over a johnsons commercial comes in for baby products to make you "babys bottoms smooth". Why is this the ideal for full grown women? (also men, but it is more acceptable for them to have rough, dry hands etc.) shouldn't men want somebody who is mature? not having perfectly smooth hands and skin implies that. As well, acne is extrememly negatively regarded, especially for older teens and young adults. again, why the smooth face? do adults want partners that are prebubescent?
I flip the channel and watch models walk down a runway, they are so stick thin that, if they had had full sized breasts, bottoms, or hips, you couldn't tell, all I see is bones.

On that note, I think all types of bodies can be sexy, big or small and whatever proportions you have, you can make sexy, by being comfortable and confident and the such. but there is a difference between a naturally skinny or petite girl, and the close to or actually are anerexic (sp?) models and actors all over the media.

Why are these things are beauty ideals?
I understand there are other sprectrums, like some cultures being fat is sexy, so although unhealthy, it is understandable, because it signifies wealth. But why youth? what is beneficial, when looking for a partner, of looking for someone who looks completely innocent and naive. what does it bring to the relationship?
and, further, how did these ideals come about?
I don't mean to say we are all pedophiles, because certainly we can all understand that it is sick. But i just find it odd that our beauty ideals reflect so heavily on prepubescent features.

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dustindawind
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i understand your point of view but if you are going to say that why do women shave there armpits? the media affects our views to a point but i think that people are people. i myself struggle with anorexia but the reason i do so is unexplainable.(models are probably trying to remain thin} in a way you may be right about people looking for prepubescence in their partners.
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not_a_hobgoblin
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Interesting questions, hunnybunny. I never thought about it that way before- that many of our standerds of beauty can be compared to children. But think for a moment about those cultures where being fat is considered attractive. Why? Because it signifies wealth. $= more food = overweight. And in our culture, it can take a lot of wealth to have personal trainers and plastic surgery and laser hair removal and all of the most efficient and "perfect" ways of achieving our physical ideals. So still, we have what we call physical ideals or "beauty" stemming from our status symbols.

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"She is a witch!"
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Airem
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Also consider that all those described things about the body relate to youth. Youth is what we all desire at some point in our lives again. Image rotates around desire. I'm too tired to go into it at the moment but thats what i think

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As The Shadow Follows The Body, As We Think, So We Become.

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-Lauren-
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I gotta say, I'm pretty uncomfortable with likening beauty standards to pedophilia. It's pretty disempowering, in my opinion, to suggest that women who shave their body hair and try to be thin are less feminine or trying to revert back to a prepubescent state.

Not to mention, sexual attraction to grown women and sexual attraction to female children are WAY different ballgames, and I'm not comfy with a comparison, because there really is none.

I think what this is more about is about the Western world losing touch with the realities of the human body, especially female. Breastfeeding is lewd in public, childbirth takes place in secret/is often treated as a medical emergency, menstruation is hidden through odor-fighting menstrual products and, more recently, hormonal menstrual suppression.

Is it such a surprise that a society that is so afraid and ashamed of so many natural internal bodily processes is also ashamed of and repulsed by external ones?

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Caomhan Andriu
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there's an interesting video done my a a sociologist (i cant for the life of my remember her name) about standards of beauty in western society and it addresses this exact post.

its called 'Still Killing Us Softly' i believe,
Heather may know, because it seems like she would be into this stuff, since its feminist and all.

but if ur curious, you should check it out, its an eye opener.

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Fasion is a form of uglisness so intolerable, we must constantly change it.
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orca
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The sociologist's name is Jean Kilbourne.
http://www.jeankilbourne.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Kilbourne

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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-Lauren-
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Awesome! The videos are linked. Thanks, orca!
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orca
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Until you said that, I had no clue that I did link the videos. [Smile]
Pretty interesting. Too bad the picture quality was so bad and it was only the one video. I'd wanted to see more of her stuff. It reminded me a lot of this class I took last semester on media and advertisements (taught by an awesome eastern European woman who was very open-minded). We talked a lot about how advertisements really try to get at people's insecurities.

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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TheFlash
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I'm a guy. My ex-gf was shaved and wanted to know if I preferred her that way. I told her I didn't care (inside I was thinking what a weird question). She was also concerned about her weight - thinking she was fat. I thought her weight was perfect. I told her she had a really nice looking butt - which she definitely did. She thought I was just being nice and basically just thought she wasn't going to get an honest answer out of me. She was probably 50 pounds over what the models look like (If I had to guess, I would say she was 170 lbs and 5'3"), but I thought she was much better looking than any model. Honestly, I think in general women care more than men. If I could tell women something, I would tell them to stop being worried about their weight (and other things guys don't care about) unless you are not healthy because you are too skinny or too fat. Honestly, it's annoying. IMHO
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hunnybunny888
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hobgoblin, I understand where you're coming from, but at the same time, especially in females, wealth is not a sign of attractiveness in the media or culture. In fact, rich people are usually portrayed as snotty and need to meet a nice average girl to bring them down to earth. Obviously, in real life it is nice if your partner has money, but society and media have downplayed the importance of money so much that I don't think it is the issue at hand here.

aeirm, I agree that youth is an attractive but my point is, how far are we willing to go. shouldn't body hair be attractive? seeing as how it often lessens in growing when we get older? youthful girls have some of the qualities I described, but alot of them such as no body hair, and perfectly smooth clear skin are only found in children, and that is quite different from young women

Miss Lauren, I didn't mean to say that people who find that attractive are pedophiles and that girls who shave are trying to revert back to that. I just find it odd that our standards are very representative of qualities of young children. It is of course a very subconcious things. Men (most of them, anyways)do not find young children sexually attractive when they see their hairless legs, or feel their babies skin. But it is just odd that subconciously, these have become the qualities of sexiness paired with grown women. I completely agree with what you said about the western world become disattacthed to the real human body. I was actually having a discussion about this with my boyfriend the other day. If we do not find cartoon characters, even those that are drawn as beautiful people with "sexy" proporations, attractive. However, we do find, photos of girls caked up with makeup, and then photoshoped to enhance the effects of makeup, fix up any other imperfections and even slightly morph the body so that it is really only a shadow of the original model, sexy. Sure, shes got great smooth skin, but then again, she doesn't have any pors.

I know that societies standards of beauty are always changing, and each time it changes different people are going to be deemed as "unnatractive" or just feel unnatractive, but this one bothers me in particular just because of a) the odd qualities (hairless) we have deemed as sexy, even though it is only natural in young children and b) the unrealistic standards that is impossible for ANYONE because the models have been computer manipulated to exaggerate their "sexiness"

thanks for the link guys!! i don't have the time right now but I'm def gonna check it out tomorrow!!

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Heather
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quote:
I understand where you're coming from, but at the same time, especially in females, wealth is not a sign of attractiveness in the media or culture. In fact, rich people are usually portrayed as snotty and need to meet a nice average girl to bring them down to earth. Obviously, in real life it is nice if your partner has money, but society and media have downplayed the importance of money so much that I don't think it is the issue at hand here.
Have to strongly disagree with that statement, hunnybunny, because it really stands very counter to what we know about the whole history of beauty ideals.

It may help to understand that when one is talking about beuaty standards based on wealth in culture and media, one isn't just talking about the upper 2% of the population, but really, the upper HALF, and what standards are set as ideals. In a capitalist culture -- which we inarguably are -- wealth very much does drive a lot of the bus. Even genital shaving, for instance, requires the luxury of time -- not just for the shaving itself, but for the presentation involved. And waxing, and then further up the scale, lasering, etc. also cost money and the luxury of time for those things, and both are things that a vast amount of the populace doesn't have, and yet the marketing for those things makes clear it is aspirational: in other words, that everyone either should have that money or time, or should aspire to.

(Looking further, look at HOW many of our beauty standards very much require disposable income and the luxury of time for vanity -- weight loss programs with special meals, personal training, status clothing, cosmetic surgery, makeup, hairdressing, the works. On top of all of that, race is also a factor here, which is unsurprising, since when it comes to cultrual/media beauty standards in the western world, white folks are both driving the car, AND fiscally benefitting the most from these standards as a class.)

I think it's also worth pointing out in this thread, that from what we know per sexology about paraphilias (like pedophilia), we can't construct them. In other words, paraphilias are known to begin in very early childhood: well before most children would see a waxed vulva. Pedophilia, as well, isn't merely looksist. In other words, it's not just about what children look like, but (and perhaps more) about how children behave, that children do not possess an adult sexuality, and potentially as well, that children do not have equal status and power.

I think you might find a little more mileage with this (I certainly see some of your points as being very valid), if rather than examining this from the standpoint of pedophilia, you look at it from a standpoint of a fear of adult women, or women in general, as well as a fear of aging, and the status often affixed -- to both women and the partners of women -- to being "youthful," and having "youthful" female partners?

[ 06-13-2007, 11:38 AM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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LucysDiamonds
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Just adding to what Heather said about wealth representing attractiveness - kind of off-topic but I think it's a pretty interesting study when you come down to it. Wealth has been a standard-setter for attractive ideals throughout history; you have contemporary standards, which Heather outlined, but if you look in the past, larger and paler women were often preferred. Why? Because the larger a woman was, the more she could afford to eat, and the paler she was, the less she had to work out in the sun: both very strong indicators of how wealthy she was.

My random two cents [Smile]

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CondomMan
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In regards to the hair issue, it's not just women either. I privately weep for each man who has had to have his back waxed at the beginning of each summer season (myself included)

I always thought of hair and it's equated unattractiveness not relating to youth or wealth, but simple hygiene. The more hair you have, the more chance for dust or dirt particles to collect inside the hair, hair follicles shedding everywhere etc. I might be taking a very superficial approach to the question however.

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rosemat
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wow, this is some insight. I never realized this. You are right, we do look for beauty which equals prepubescent kids. Reminds me of LOLITA all of a sudden. True, I have seen ads where they say your buttock skin can be as smooth as a babies. I think that does say something very profound. I never caught that. Man the level of insight people can give you! Is my brain just not working? Well I do know the male / female myth is, women are softer, hairless, baby like skin, baby like intelligence (meaning stupidity), childish needs, childish worries, always laughing like a child, doesn't know how serious life is etc. Men treat women like children, like babies. cute and cuddly to look and play with, but when its time to be intelligent and serious, GET A WAY FROM THEM!

Literally the man is the parent, the woman the child. That's the relationship for eons now. I guess that's where all this is coming from?

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selina
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now i don't normally care anything about the osbournes. but i read a quote from kelly osbourne in the lite paper a while ago and what she said was spot on. 'why would guys think that looking like you've come out of auchwitz makes you look sexy?' if a guy has a problem with my body hair, i'll tell him to deal with it becuase its natural. women don't tell men to remove their body hair so why should men disapprove of women not doing so? its like being a woman isn't natural. i would never remove my pubic hair apart from tidying up my bikini line simply becuase of those pictures of concentration camp victims who had all their body hair taken off them to humiliate them. the image just horrified me and i know i would never want to do that. why do guys like the lolita look exactly? is it becuase it makes them feel more like a man or something?
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