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Halloween Slut-Shaming: Enough Already!

Some people love Halloween, while others hate it, for a variety of reasons. The point of Halloween is to dress up as whatever you want. In fact, you probably already have your costume picked out. To some, Halloween is the best time of the year. It’s exciting and playful to pick out a costume and be a character other than yourself once a year. This is the same reason that theme parties are always so much fun. Halloween costumes can be creative, humorous, unusual and, apparently, “slutty”. I have a big problem with that last one.

We already live in a world where slut-shaming is a very real issue; from discrediting women who have been sexually assaulted, to places in the world where women do not have power or say over their own bodies. So why perpetuate such hate on a day like Halloween, a day that’s supposed to be light-hearted and entertaining? Girls who wear sexy costumes may be criticized for seeking male attention or for having low self-esteem. There are so many problems with that type of thinking. To criticize a woman for wanting attention from the opposite sex perpetuates the stereotype that women should be demure, fragile objects who never think about sex. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a man negatively described as “seeking female attention”. If a man wants the attention of a woman, there’s nothing unusual about it. But flip that around and suddenly the woman is a slut.

Claiming that a woman has low self-esteem for wanting to wear a certain type of Halloween costume seems pretty illogical to me. Do some women have low self-esteem? Yes. Do some men have low self-esteem? Yes. Do all these people wear the exact same Halloween costume? Definitely not. And where’s the logic in that, anyway? If a woman feels confident and proud enough of her body to flaunt it, she’s labeled as having low self-esteem? It seems to me that she might actually have the opposite.

Men need to stop slut-shaming women on Halloween, but equally as important is eliminating women-on-women hate. Often we are most critical of each other, which only works to the advantage of men who want women to feel crappy about themselves. Your body is your body, to do whatever you want with and to dress however you want, too. If you are happy with yourself and confident enough to wear something that you feel empowers you, then that is your choice and your right. The fact that some people want to label a confident woman as a slut for being in charge of her own body is the real problem here. This Halloween, wear whatever you want. Because contrary to what the media and society wants you to believe, your body belongs to you and only you

Happy Halloween readers! We at Her Campus hope you have a great night whatever you choose to wear, or not wear – xoxo HCUBC

Hailey is a third-year English student from Chilliwack, B.C.
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