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Research Blog: Is sexual harassment worse than bullying?

Research Blog: Is sexual harassment worse than bullying?

-by Kim Belmonte

In my high school, boys would sneak up behind girls they found cute and unhook their bras. When this happened to me, I—like all the other girls—shrieked and ran off to re-adjust my bra. I was annoyed, embarrassed and also, a little confused. Even though it made me uncomfortable it was generally seen as “harmless flirting” and I wondered if I was supposed to laugh at it or like it? [What’s that you said? Was it a “hell no?!”] Okay, okay, adult me is also saying, “Of course not!” Maybe it seems pretty obvious that it’s wrong to remove another person’s clothing without their permission. But while I was warned to watch out for bullying as a teenager, since no one was being called names or getting shoved into lockers, this didn’t quite seem like it qualified as an issue.

research blog pic

Now I realize flirting that makes one person uncomfortable is actually harassment. But the phrase sexual harassment isn’t something we often associate with kids in hallways, locker rooms and classrooms. Even now, for many, the phrase “sexual harassment” conjures up images of adults, like high powered execs at Fox News. A quick Google image search of ”bullying” reveals mostly images of kids and “sexual harassment” reveals mostly pictures of adults! And while there’s a ton of research on how bullying in can lead to mental health issues like depression and anxiety and low academic achievement,[1] no one seems to be talking about the problem of sexual harassment in schools. Since sexual harassment isn’t given the same attention as bullying, does that mean it’s not really an issue for kids in schools?

Researchers James Gruben and Susan Fineran[2] had a similar question: they wanted to compare how students’ experiences of bullying and sexual harassment related to their feelings about school.

Now, you may be saying to yourself, “Jiminy cricket! Can someone first please explain the difference between bullying and sexual harassment?” Gruber and Fineran define bullying as an aggressive behavior, while sexual harassment is aggressive behavior that is sexualized or gendered in nature. This difference is really important because discriminating against someone because of their sex or gender is actually a violation of their civil rights.[3]

And more specifically, sexual harassment is based in gender/sexuality inequality and reinforces it by keeping straight boys/men in dominant social positions over queer boys and girls/women of all sexual orientations. Still not sure what sexual harassment looks like? Picture this: a boy calls a classmate gay or another homophobic slur to put him down. Someone refers to a girl as a ‘slut’ or spreads sexual rumors about her. A boy touches a girl on the butt as she walks to class. Someone repeatedly asks a classmate out on a date after they’ve said no. A boy unhooks a girl’s bra… and so on.

To answer their research question, researchers James Gruben and Susan Fineran gave out surveys to middle and high school students which asked questions about their experiences of bullying, sexual harassment and school stuff: school engagement, teacher-support, and grades. Students reported how often they experienced bullying–like having been pushed, threatened or socially excluded – and how often they experienced sexual harassment–like being touched in a sexual nature, being the subject of sexual rumors, or experiencing sexually offensive comments. Students also answered questions about their feelings about school and academic performance.

So, what did they find? They found that experiences of sexual harassment had more negative consequences than experiences of bullying (for boys and girls)! In other words, they found experiences of sexual harassment were more linked to feeling negative about school and lower grades than bullying. Although the researchers didn’t find differences in the numbers of boys or girls who were harassed, they did find that girls faced more negative consequences as a result of sexual harassment. Girls who experienced sexual harassment had lower GPAs (i.e., grades), felt less supported by their teachers, were less satisfied, less engaged (e.g., they ignored homework or daydreamed in class), and were more withdrawn from school (e.g., they thought about leaving school without graduating). Yikes! Basically, sexual harassment was related to girls not feeling connected to their schools and underperforming academically.

Since sexual harassment is essentially a way of perpetuating sexism it also totally makes sense that harassment had worse consequences for girls. Thinking back now to the “unhook-her-bra” game the boys played in my high school I see how that was a way (intentional or not) that boys asserted that flirtation happens on their terms, according to their rules. The game made it seem like boys have a right to touch girls without their permission and that girls’ comfort didn’t matter as much as boys’ fun. It’s no wonder that repeated experiences of that kind make girls feel unsafe and unconnected to their schools.

Well, what can we do about it? First, we need to make sure we recognize sexual harassment as discrimination based one’s sex or gender, rather than just calling it another type of bullying. This is important because even though the media and schools often overlook sexual harassment in favor of stories about the impact of bullying, this research shows us that sexual harassment can be even more harmful.

And then? We need to take action! Two awesome examples come from our very own SPARK bloggers! Ejin Jeong wrote about reimagining dress codes so that they don’t focus on slut-shaming girls and Brenda Guesnet wrote about raising awareness of sexual harassment by compiling women’s stories into an exhibit on her college campus. These are just two ways that girls and women can speak back to (hetero)sexist school cultures. I know, it’s still August, so school may feel lightyears away (and you should totally enjoy these last few weeks of sun and fun before back to school), but it’s never too early to think about what school safety and security should look and feel like. Write in a comment below about your thoughts and experiences—let’s brainstorm together for how to make schools a safer and more comfortable place for all students.




[2] Gruber, J. & Fineran, S. (2015). Sexual Harassment, Bullying, and School Outcomes for High School Girls and Boys, Violence Against Women, 1-22.


The Orlando shooting: Alternative media

Brought to you by Powered By Girl


Trigger warning – Orlando shooting

Here is a page dedicated to all those who lost their lives in the Orlando shooting at Pulse night club. 49 people were killed on Saturday – the biggest mass shooting in recent US history. They were queer people, predominantly Latinx queer people. As the media continues to blame Muslims and those with mental health difficulties, we thought we’d gather some alternative media. The articles below are by Muslim people and queer people, predominantly QTIPOC. We’ll keep adding to this list, so please send us anything you think should be included.

A video from Familia: trans and queer liberation movement

“We Must Remember That The Orlando Shooting Happened At A Gay Club On Latin Night” by Marie Southard Ospina

“Latinx LGBTQ Community & Its Stories of Survival Should Be at Center of Orlando Response” – an interview with Isa Noyola

“Queer Muslims exist – and we are in mourning too” by Samra Habib

“The hate behind the Orlando massacre” by Khaled A Beydoun and Mehammed A Mack

“Today is a tragic, sad day for the world’s LGBT community” by Shon Faye

“70 Percent of Anti-LGBT Murder Victims Are People of Color” by Michael Lavers

UK Black Pride press release

Noorulann Shahid speaks on channel 4 news

“Here Is What LGBT Muslims Want You To Know After The Orlando Shooting”

In honour of our dead: Latinx, Queer, Trans, Muslim, Black – we will be free – Black Lives Matter

“Defining safety for all queer people in the wake of Orlando” by Jacqui Germain

“This is how LGBT Muslims are responding to the Orlando shooting” by Fiona Rutherford and Aisha Gani

“Dear white, hetero, cis people: please don’t co-opt this tragedy” by Mariella Mosthof

“80 percent of LGBT people killed are minorities” by Leo Duran

“In Honor of Orlando: 10 Books That Celebrate Queer Latinx Identity”

A statement from the London Latinxs –


Safra Project

“It was shocking and saddening to hear the news of the Orlando shootings yesterday, and to see the effects upon the world and community. I cannot describe how it feels to identify as queer, and to watch such a story unfolding- particularly, to read that the worst attack in recent US history was a hate crime based on gender and sexuality. My thoughts have been entirely with the victims and their families- not just those of the 50 lives lost, but also the countless other lives so broken by the acts of one person. At the moment, the entire community is in a state of grief and shock; it has been a hellish time, and I have not yet come across any individual who identifies as LGBTQ+ and hasn’t been affected. However, I have also been bearing in mind that, whilst this is a particularly bad attack, this is not a new thing: that the LGBTQ+ community history is steeped in discrimination and hate crime- which, whilst being an incredibly awful things to consider, is also powerful. There have been attempts to tear us down time and time again, and we are still here. The LGBTQ+ community is incredible in it’s adversity and solidarity, in it’s true meaning of the word community, and it is that that I, personally, am holding on to at the moment.” – PBGer Bex Dudley

Book review: My Daughter’s Army

By Christiana Paradis, brought to you by Powered By Girl


I just finished reading My Daughter’s Army by Greg Hogben and the moment I put it down my heart was pounding—I just wanted more! It’s honestly taken me several days to fully put all of my thoughts about this book together and write the review that it deserves. The book follows Adam Goodwin, an attorney, who finds a baby abandoned in a train station. Goodwin goes on to adopt and single parent the child, Sera. As she ages Sera becomes an international advocate for women’s equality and her dad remains her number one supporter through it all. Here’s a quick run-down of a few of the reasons why I loved it and why feisty feminists everywhere will want to snag a copy!

  • Hooray for representations of healthy masculinity! This book is told from the perspective of Adam Goodwin, who is a father raising a sweet, caring, and loving daughter who will stop at nothing to improve the lives of women around the world. In presenting the book like this, it highlights the topic of single fatherhood, which is often overlooked. Adam finds Sera abandoned at a train station and takes on the responsibility of raising her along with his brother and three female neighbors. Additionally, Adam’s character never hesitates to express the true love that a father possesses for his daughter. We hear so much about the problems of toxic hypermasculinity and the ways in which it works to stifle male emotion. This book does the opposite. It presents the true beauty of healthy masculinity and particularly this father’s never-ending duty to support his daughter in any way that he can to help her achieve her mission.
  • Not another gay tragedy! Adam Goodwin is a gay single father. The way in which his sexuality is referred to is monumental for two reasons. First, Adam’s sexuality is not the main focus of the book, in fact it is only mentioned in reference to the loss of his partner. Thus, his character’s sexuality is presented just as normally as any other heterosexual character. Often when LGBTQ+ characters are included their sexual identity becomes their only. To the contrary,My Daughter’s Army presents sexuality as any other qualifying distinction and moves on. It was a breath of fresh air to see the normalization of an LGTBQ+ sexuality. Secondly, despite several upsets the character endures throughout the book, his sexuality is never a point of tragedy. Often LGBTQ+ characters endure tragic fates or are continually presented in stereotypical depictions. In this work, Adam’s sexuality is not a cause for depression or sadness, but rather just a piece of the character that is presented in a positive and empowering light, which is a drastic change from most novels.
  • Feminism and Faith. Towards the middle to the end of the book religious connotations begin to make an appearance. (I hate spoilers so I will not tell you how or why.) At first, I was a little reluctant to this addition; however, it is integrated into the text in a way that the reader doesn’t feel forced into understanding or accepting the character’s religion in order to enjoy the work. The religion is presented mostly as non-denominational with Christian undertones. Additionally, once I had finished the book and reflected on it I actually realized that this integration helps reconcile some ever persisting ideas that feminism and LGBTQ+ issues automatically clash with ideas of religion. It was wonderful (even if you don’t have any particular religious affiliation) to see the integration of these two spheres of thought, coming together in a mainstream title.
  • The US isn’t the center of the universe—International Feminist Representation and Inclusion! One of my favorite things about this book is that it integrates international feminist and women’s issues. It tackles everything from human trafficking to honor killings and it presents them in a way that is raw and real; yet takes into account cultural implications for the communities in which they are taking place. Often feminist works tend to stick to one particular issue or present third wave feminist issues only on a national level, this book goes above and beyond to include women’s issues on an international scale. THANK YOU!
  • Powered By Girl! But finally–my absolute favorite thing about this book is that it highlights the amazing accomplishments that internet activism can have and it is entirely powered by girl! This book is a homage to all social justice activists working in the field and behind computer screens to make a difference in the lives of women around the world. It presents how internet activism can make a difference, but also encourage real action offline. The accomplishments and implications of Sera’s work throughout the text are a true testament to the work of feminist organizations like PBG and others around the globe. Sometimes work in this movement can be exhausting—this book put into perspective that we are making a difference and each day at a time, little-by-little, the world is becoming a better and safer place for women.

Please consider purchasing and reading My Daughter’s Army. You will not be disappointed!

Fractured families: A review of the Green Road

By Anna Hill, brought to you by Powered By Girl

Content note – brief mention of: death, bi erasure, aids, white saviourism, physical abuse and childhood neglect and abuse

If The Green Road by Anne Enright had not been shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction I wouldn’t have picked it up. The novel is set in the west of Ireland and follows Rosaleen Madigan and her grown and growing up children. The four children: Emmett, Dan, Hanna and Constance start the narrative in various places and states of growing up (Hanna is 8 in the first chapter) – from Dan in New York during the aids crisis to Constance in a hospital in Limerick in 1997.

The Green Road is also about the way families work; the way that we misunderstand and create images of our relatives in our heads. It’s about the gaps between people, between recognition, the space between cliffs and words and darkness of waiting – for say a play to start, or for people to die or be cured. There is so much expecting that everyone is disappointed. The novel is also about what being a mother means; what having children does to you and your life and how that might negatively and positively affect your perspective. Enright offers us some different versions of motherhood, from Rosaleen who is dramatic and difficult to Constance who finds her children comforting and safe, to Hanna who is erratic and messy.

As an opening Hanna’s chapter is beautifully crafted and unlike the messy whirlwind that she epitomizes, or the “dirty protest” of her behavior and life – it is intricate and detailed. The observations Hanna makes as an eight year old girl learning about death and growth are captivating. The rest of the family tease Hanna sometimes cruelly, saying that her “bladder is very close to [her] eyes” and, as every crybaby will have heard (me included) “here come the waterworks”! Hanna’s connection with fluids is interesting because she is associated with them throughout the novel – not just tears, but also blood and alcohol which lends her to a very traditionally emotional feminine body vocabulary and voice.

the green road

Dan’s introductory chapter was the most heartbreaking – it follows the melancholic sweetness of queer men loving each other and dying. Unfortunately though Dan experiences biphobia from both the characters and Enright’s vision for him – Dan expresses how he loves his partner, isabelle and also says “I’m not actually gay you know”. I’m sure to some extent that Dan’s reluctance could be pegged to internalized homophobia, but it might also be because he’s not gay – because he really does love Isabelle, but he also loves and is sexually attracted to men. Bisexual men will have lost their partners to aids, they will have had aids too and simply because they are not gay doesn’t make them straight, doesn’t mean they aren’t intrinsically linked to the pain in the 1990s. I think you can read Dan’s love for Isabelle as proof of his bisexuality and this chapter contributes to the rampant Bi erasure in queer history.

Other than the lack of awareness of polysexual identities, I think the way the chapter approaches queer issues was sensitive and appropriate. One of the moments that has stayed with me the most is when a character’s mother finally comes to visit him in his last days; after staring into the eyes of her lovely son, Enright writes “he became human again. He became pure.”.

Out of all four siblings, I enjoyed Constance’s perspective best. Never prioritizing herself, Constance devotedly looks after her children and her well meaning but inept husband Dessie who “goes peculiar” when she is sick. Constance and her body are one and the same so when her body has stopped working in the way it should it’s a blip in her life – she thinks she can’t get sick because she has too much to do! Whilst waiting for the test results though there are some delicious sensory descriptions; the beauty of the mammogram with “the map of light that was her left breast” and this wonderful visceral passage on giving birth: “she remembered the undoing of her own bones as the children were born. Her pelvis opening – there was a pleasure in it, like the top of a yawn – as the baby twisted out of her. It was all so simply done. And the baby was such a force, each time.”

Even after she has given birth Constance still sees her body as a “fabulous object” for the enjoyment “for all the family”. And Dessie, clueless, once asks “How is all that?” mystified by women’s bodies.

The one character I really couldn’t stand was Emmett – I found his voice violent and misogynistic and his positioning racist and insensitive. He is living as an aid worker in Segou, Mali, but the whole chapter positions him as the white savior to Africa, which he often refers to as a monolithic, singular entity rather than the nuanced varied continent it is. His misogyny comes out in his approach to his girlfriend Alice, who he undermines and sometimes thinks about hurting physically. He treats her pain in a way that dehumanizes her seeing it as something that makes her “sweet and wild” even suggesting that her abusive and neglectful childhood was worth it because she “turned it all to good”!

The representation of childhood and the long standing affects our pasts have on us is a key thread. And that all comes to head in the childhood home the Madigan’s shared, which, unlike their family relations, is never complicated or harmful, but rather exists soaking up their lives. Here is one of my favourite passages about the house: “It was a question of texture, Dan thought, a whiff of your former self in a twist of fabric, a loose board. It was the reassuring madness of patterned wallpaper under the daily shift of light…. The house made sense in a way that nothing else did.”

Overall I think The Green Road is a delicate and dynamic novel but its structure is where it falls down. The sections can be jarring and in some cases leave too many gaps – for example we meet Hanna as a child and only again at age 37, so her life is not explored in the same way as the other siblings. Family focused novels can offer engaging ideas about growing up and relationships and I definitely think Enright succeeded here – I wouldn’t say I was blown away, but I enjoyed the fragility of the words and the subtlety of the settings.

Fatphobia and food: A review of the improbability of love

Brought to you by Powered By Girl

By Anna Hill

Content note: anorexia [breifly], fatphobia, racial stereotyping, very brief mention of rape

The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild is a novel ostensibly about the transformative power of art and as such has been shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction this year. The novel follows a woman named Annie who stumbles across a masterful painting in a junk shop, and the consequences of her purchasing it. She is plunged into the art world full of salacious gossip and billionaires and a potential new lover.

I will be up front with you – I didn’t think this should have been shortlisted; it’s not that I didn’t enjoy it at all (for example, some chapters where written from the paintings perspective which was fun), I just felt like any kind of authenticity or innovation was missing. Not only was it structurally and linguistically dull, but it also employed tropes and traits that are actively harmful, repeated everywhere in media.

In some novels it doesn’t matter if the characters are two-dimensional because you are reading for the plot, but with The Improbability of Love, neither the characters nor the plot where interesting enough to really propel the story. Even the main character Annie is fairly simplistic and more disturbingly there are racialized caricatures throughout the novel. For example “Filipino servants”, who are only ever mentioned in connection to their race (and never say a word) and the wealthy Arabs; The Emir of Alwabbi and his domineering wife Sheika Midora who supposedly have links with Al-Qaeda. Add to the racist stereotyping an incredibly stereotypical representation of queerness, and more lazy and uninteresting writing occurs. There is one token queer person in the book – Barty is a socially mobile, white cisgender gay man who, unlike the majority of the other characters is left with no relationship and is seemingly only motivated by what he should wear to the next ridiculously extravagant art world event.

improbability of love

The book, as you might assume, features descriptions of art, but almost more intensely describes food – Annie works as a chef so we often hear about her love of food and her work in creating banquets for rich art dealers, collectors and historians. As a self-confessed food lover (I will consume as much chocolate as humanely possible in my life time!!) I tend to enjoy great descriptions of food that revel in the sensuality and vibrancy and fun of food and eating, like how Ruby Tandoh waxes lyrical about fast food in her vice column Dirty Eating, or how much I enjoy anyone talking to me about the pleasures of butter. Unfortunately though I have some major issues with Rothschild’s descriptions. Firstly a lot of the descriptions are incredibly contrived with clichéd phrases such as “each variety of vegetable suggested a story” or moments when Annie asks herself: “how could anyone think of an aubergine in such a disparaging way?”. And secondly, they are harmful in the simultaneous elevating of slim people who enjoy food and denigrating of fat people who do the same.

The fatphobia of the Improbability of love first comes to light with the overweight and lonely art historian Delores. Described in unfavourable terms and often supposed to provide comic relief, because, for example, she has leftover food on her face or clothing, Rothschild plays into the hegemonic idea that fat people and especially fat women are jokes and are not deserving of respect. Delores’ size is remarked on multiple times and in a lot of ways her fat body is seen as something to consume, something to watch, to point at. At her birthday banquet Annie describes her as “a vast animated sea anemone shimmying across the floor”, whilst all the other (slim) guests’ outfits are described in detail and without immediate judgement or animalisation. The representation of Annie’s love and obsession with food is palatable and serious only because she is slim; if a fat woman were to describe food at the length Annie does it would be comedic. When Annie gets a bit of food on her face Jesse (the love interest) finds it charming, but on a fat body it is repugnant, unattractive, gross. Annie herself is described in incredibly anorexic terms, for Jesse, the main love interest, “she had an ethereal dreamy quality, as if she wasn’t quite grounded but floating above earthly matters”. In other words it looks like she was light, thin, not heavy and full, the opposite of fat.

The other, even more worrying representation of fatness, comes in the form of Delia – a textbook example of fatphobic assumptions; Delia knows the TV schedule off by heart, is uncaring, eats too much food (according to her husband, “you…eat enough for nine”), is unintelligent (when she asks what a word means she is met with silence) and is jealous of the conventionally attractive slim women she sees on TV. In a really disgusting moment Delia says “he might have been a rapist” of Jesse when she refuses to let him in the house and her husband replies, disgustingly; “in your dreams woman, in your dreams.”.

When we consume media about food, particularly those that celebrate the creation and consumption of it, we need to keep questioning who is palatable and who isn’t. Fat characters and fat people are mistreated and affected negatively in most texts that focus on the pleasures of eating (and even those that don’t, such as the Harry Potter series). And this affects fat people’s quality of life. Fat people are more likely to struggle with employment and bullying/death threats or being told that the one way to solve any kind of illness or disability is to lose weight. Next time Hannah Rothschild writes a novel I hope she radically deconstructs her views on fatness and desirability instead of regurgitating tired, boring and harmful views.

Research Blog: Judgments of self-sexualization on Facebook, or, too sexy to be smart

By Jenn Chmielewski

It’s that time of year when I start seeing photo after photo on Facebook of people vacationing in awesome (warm) locations. While I am still cold in New York City, I see them lounging on beautiful beaches in bikinis or partying like rock stars in crop tops at Coachella. I will admit, as I sift through Facebook in my pajamas, I start to get a little jealous – and a little judgmental. Some of those bikini shots on the beach seem pretty sexualized. When it looks like a Kardashian directed a photo shoot, I start to turn up my nose a bit. The feminist in me knows this isn’t right though. I mean, really, the media is constantly telling us that we should be focused on looking attractive all the time, so it’s no wonder young women sometimes sexualize themselves in an effort to look sexy. I don’t always agree with what that definition of “sexy” should be, but the pressure to look the part affects me too. I don’t want to have to have full make-up on at the beach or crawl around in the sand while a friend captures it on camera, for instance. But I also won’t post a picture where I feel like my hair doesn’t look right or my eyes are closed or my belly is sticking out just a little too much… So why should I judge how young women on Facebook are spending their time on a beautiful beach? Does that make them less feminist than me or less smart than me, just because they want to portray themselves in a more sexualized way than I am comfortable doing myself?

All of this made me wonder how other girls and young women perceive self-sexualizing photos on social media. We know that buying into the sexualized media ideal can have negative consequences, from body dissatisfaction and eating disorders to limited career aspirations. But how does it affect what other people think about us? It turns out that researchers Elizabeth Daniels and Eileen Zurbriggen[1] actually just did a cool experiment on this topic. They asked adolescent girls and young adult women to view a Facebook profile of a 20-year old white, blonde-haired woman named “Amanda.” Each participant saw Amanda dressed in either a non-sexualized way or a sexualized way. Non-sexualized Amanda was wearing jeans and a short-sleeved shirt with a scarf around her neck in her profile photo. Sexualized Amanda was wearing a low-cut red dress with a slit up the leg to the mid-thigh and a visible garter belt in her profile photo. After participants looked at one of these Facebook profiles for Amanda, they were asked a bunch of questions about her, like how attractive they thought she was, how much they would want to be friends with her, and how smart they thought she was.

If you have ever had thoughts mine when you look at sexualized Facebook profiles, you probably will not be surprised by what these researchers found. It turns out that both teenage girls and young adult women who viewed the sexualized profile of Amanda rated her as less physically attractive, socially attractive, and competent, than the participants who looked at the non-sexualized Facebook profile. In other words, people who saw Amanda in the sexualized condition were less likely to find her attractive, were less likely to want to be friends with her, and were less likely to think she could handle tasks competently. They had all these negative attitudes just based on what she was wearing.

So where does this leave us in a sexualized world where we are told our looks matter more than anything else, but we are judged when we try to look sexy in a sexualized way (and we judge others for doing the same). It sure feels like we’re damned if we do, and damned if we don’t. Look, I could say that the lesson of this study is that young women shouldn’t buy into the sexualized ideal and post those racy Facebook photos because they will be judged negatively by other girls and women for it. But as a young woman and a feminist I know it’s not that simple. Girls and women who post sexualized photos are not the problem. We should not be force-fed the idea that dressing in a sexualized way is the only way to be sexy. And we should be more understanding of the pressures we are all under. Some of us want to reject the system that encourages us to self-sexualize but we shouldn’t reject girls when they buy into it sometimes.

Now, I’m not exactly saying I’m going to start hitting the ‘Like’ button when I see my acquaintances in their Victoria’s Secret-style photo shoots. But I will check myself and my nose turning. Because I know where the desire to look that way comes from. And hey, who knows, maybe it feels good to some people too! I’ve never crawled around on the sand – who am I to knock it? So when I see these photos, I will also start reminding myself to be a little less judgmental and a little more supportive of the multitude of ways that girls and women can find their own sexy.


[1] Daniels, E. A., & Zurbriggen, E. L. (2016). The price of sexy: Viewers’ perceptions of a sexualized versus nonsexualized Facebook profile photograph. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, 5, 2-14.