It's Thursday night. You're waiting to get into the bar and you take in the scenery around you. There's a girl bent forward into a trash can emptying the contents of her stomach, while her friend is across the street squatting next to a bush with her skirt around her ankles. There's a boy flailing his body around yelling at the bouncer through slurred words, while his other friend shoves his tongue down some equally trashed girl's throat. And let me tell you something, we've all been there, I've been there. But there are people that are there every. single. weekend. And I'm not trying to belittle you or judge you if you are "that girl" or "that guy", but instead maybe open a few eyes on the importance of keeping a sound self-respect, especially in college.
Everyone wants respect but not everyone respects themselves. And it is so evident in the actions of so many college kids around me honestly it's overwhelming. We are so close to adulthood, barely toes deep in it, but we are, for all intensive purposes, adults. We enter college at the legal age of 18 years old. And we quickly realize as that girl from our English class is getting handcuffed to the side of a cop car, that we aren't minors anymore and our actions have repercussions. And we see her the next week showing her mugshot to all her friends and laughing it off, but that is embarrassing. You lost control. You showed everyone that you find it funny to vomit all over the dance floor and argue with a cop. But do you ever stop to think that one day you're probably going to have a daughter that might act the exact same way if you don't start respecting yourself? Because you can't teach true self-respect if you don't have any. And don't think for a second that this is only a problem based around girls. Boys need it almost more. Because they're taught their whole life that boys will be boys. And that they can just ride the wave of a double-standard for the majority of college, while calling girls derogatory names when they've probably slept with more people than she has.
But here is where the issue lies. What is a boy with a mind shaped from social media and society, supposed to call a girl who throws herself at every guy every weekend, throws up all over at every party, and her clothes are half off her body by the end of the night, every time. Certainly not a grown woman. Because grown woman do not act like that. Does your grandmother? Does your mother? They are grown. And this is not me slut-shaming. This is me raising awareness to the girls that wonder why they don't attract the decent boys. Respect yourself. You are a woman. And you're working towards being grown. And it is hard sometimes in a place like college to not over do it every once in a while. But respect yourself enough to know that you don't want people to have to walk over you when you're passed out on the floor. Because let me tell you something, boys notice when you have self-respect. They love a girl with confidence and a girl that knows she's worth it. But here is where boys need to understand something. Just because a girl is wearing a low cut shirt or a tight dress does not mean you have the right to her body just because she is showing it off. Would you want some 20-year-old scrub pawing at your little sister just because you could see her cleavage? Guess what, cleavage is often inevitable and its not a turn on for you to ask to do a "boob luge" off of me because I "wouldn't wear that shirt if I didn't want you to." Understand that we're all somebody's daughter and sister just the same as you are somebody's son and brother. If you wouldn't want someone treating your loved one that way, don't treat someone else's like that.
And this all comes full circle when you respect yourself. Because when you respect yourself you are more open to the respect of others. She's face down on the couch and your friend tells you to go hit that? You're better than that, go find the girl that managed to stay upright throughout the night. Your friend tells you to write "Rush __ Fraternity" on your bare chest with your smiling face in it? If you're not prepared for your grandfather or boss to see that, take a hard pass on that one. It's not trendy to be trashy, no matter what anyone tells you, you will always be able to have fun while remaining true to your standards and respecting yourself.