By Jordi Brown.
Written in response to Dear Daughter, Let Miley Cyrus Be a Lesson to You.
Yes, this is what happens when the expectations that society place on you begin to feel more like strangulating suppression than caring guidance. This is what happens when everything you do as a young woman is judged, shamed and censored without a reasonable explanation. This is what happens when no responsible adult has accepted you as a person of agency, when you are denied your power because your sexuality is perceived as threatening or constantly pressured to present a duality of womanhood that is impossible to obtain.
If you are able to freely and passionately dance publicly on stage in attire that you’re comfortable and confident in, I wholeheartedly promise you that I will run up at the end of your performance to let you know how incredibly proud I am of your courage and spirit. I will hate on anyone who tells you who you should be, how you should present yourself and what you can and cannot do as a woman. I will support your lifestyle choices and actively take interest in any male or female or non-gender identifying soul who you desire to be intimate with, whether it be a casual night or a committed relationship or an open exploration with a myriad of beings– after I ensure that they treat you with the utmost respect and that they gave you multiple mind-blowing orgasms. If you choose not to be sexually active that’s perfectly fine too. Either way, I promise never to burden you with the guilt of not having children because you are already contributing so much to our society with your stunning presence.
Why would I do such things? Because I love you and I want you to respect your true self and your choice of self-expression. Self-respect is a personal journey and therefore cannot be defined for you nor will it be embodied in a similar way by such a world of diverse people. Nevertheless, I unreservedly hope that you are able to teach others how to love and value you in a way that you find fulfilling. In addition, I wish that you learn to appreciate alternative ways that self-love can be manifested by others for themselves.
Miley Cyrus is of integrity and sexiness and audacity. She is a young woman in control of her image: a confident, playful human being. Regard her strength. Celebrate her independence. Embody her defiance.
You probably know girls who will project this image throughout your life. Admire their boldness. But recognise that self-assurance is not always attention-grabbing or provocative. However, no matter what way you opt to present yourself, know that your body exists entirely for you to experience every moan-inducing pleasure possible and that’s ok. There’s no shame in enjoying it with a stranger and no shame in ensuring that people appreciate the integral qualities of your personality before engaging in any sexual activity and no shame in choosing to remain abstinent.
I’m sorry if you’ve ever felt incredibly frustrated, constricted or demoralised because the world that you live in has not provided you with a safe environment to enthusiastically explore your humanity as a young woman. My role is to teach you how to navigate this life while accessing your greatest potential and yet I apologise if you’ve ever been made to believe that you are inferior or unworthy because your inner beauty is not recognised by the patriarchy. I’m sorry that your greatest achievements will be undermined by your gender and I’m sorry that I am unable to prevent all the injustice that you will happen upon until your body nourishes this Earth.
But, dear daughter I’m going to cause rebellious havoc until you can openly be the person you are without being unfairly condemned by our society.
We’re in this together.
Jordi Brown has just entered the stage of her life known as the ‘twenties’ and has just begun university after spending 6 months in India as an English Teacher in a rural village within the Darjeeling region. She is passionate about empowering people and volunteers for the Reach Foundation, challenging young people to step outside of their comfort zone and embody #yolo.