Teenage girls should be encouraged to say fuck, learn how to fuck themselves and achieve Fuck Off Status.

Teenage girls should be encouraged to swear.

No one is forcing them to but encourage them to swear if they want to. The worst thing you can encourage girls to be is nice and the second is pretty.

The idea swearing is ‘wrong’ or ‘nice’ indicates there’s a universal agreement on the definitions of ‘wrong’ and ‘nice’ and a. these traits are desirable and b. you can project yourself as being nice by simply sticking to the rule of not saying certain words.

A linguist once told me the people most likely to swear are working class men and educated women. Which props up my theory the poor and the rich have much more in common than the middle class. Who work out what they think is the done thing by aspiring to what they think the rich do, and doing the opposite of what they think the working class do.

Encouraging teenage girls to swear teaches them to question the people who tell them they’ve crossed the line or broken the rules. It encourages them to ask “What rules? What line? Says who? Where’s it written, who wrote it and why?”

I tell girls (and boys) to beware of anyone using the words respect, traditional, family values, unacceptable, morality, uncalled for, inappropriate or unnecessary. Particularly to beware of the word ‘offensive’.

It’s code for ‘Pipe down princess, back in your box.‘

Offence is taken not given and more harm is created by taking offence than giving it.

Just because someone is offended does not mean they’re right.

Offence is used as a mode of social control. Do not be oppressed by feeling you’re supposed to lie down in some chalk outline drawn for you by a society that once upon a time would have burned you at the stake for such unladylike behavior. Now all they can do is accuse you of transgressing some social norm constructed by the patriarchy to put you in your place. And the reason you have to be put or kept in your place is in order to fortify their place. And their place would be the one with disproportionate access to power, control, decisions, leisure, money and the ability to control women’s bodies. AMIRIGHT?

Words reveal much.

Men have opinions, women are opinionated.

Men speak, women are outspoken.

Men are passionate, women rant.

Men have mouths, women are mouthy.

And when was the last time you heard a man called feisty, bitter, sassy, shrill or ‘a piece of work’?

The shibboleth is not that people who swear are uneducated or have small vocabularies; the real shibboleth is that people who assert those who swear are uneducated or have small vocabularies reveal they are insular morons themselves.

“The sort of twee person who thinks swearing is in any way a sign of a lack of education or a lack of verbal interest or -is just a fucking lunatic.” Stephen Fry

Teenage girls should learn to fuck themselves.

Had a discussion with Clementine Ford the other day and she told me about a sex therapist on Oprah who said teenage girls should be encouraged to masturbate. People went crazy. The show was overwhelmed with complaints claiming that ‘encouraging girls to masturbate would make them promiscuous’ . Sorry?

(No, it wouldn’t. Buy so what if it did?)

Clem and I then had a long discussion about masturbation. She was flicking the bean and getting the magic feeling from 12. I did not work out how to orgasm through masturbation until I was 21.

Yes 21.

Growing up masturbation was talked about as something only men did and that was only if they were perverts, desperate or gay. Hetrosexual intercourse was the only real sex. Anything else is what you did ‘if you couldn’t get it’. I don’t know when I worked out masturbation was something that women did on their own and with partners. I do know I would have a fiddle every now and then but never manage to climax. Which was why I WAS BOY CRAZY. Jumping the fence to find a boy or a man with the magic wand to make with the abracadabra. My teens were spent in a constant state of distraction and frustration.

If I had been encouraged to masturbate, if it was spoken about in a healthy and positive way and actively encouraged I wouldn’t have been so emotionally unstable and boy crazy as a teenager. I could have had a wank and got on with my homework, had better sex in my teens because I knew how things worked and knew how to fuck myself and perhaps give the boys and menI was shagging a bit of a hand as we fumbled about.

Recently I have found myself in two separate situations chatting away with a women with her teenage daughter in earshot. I used the word ‘lube’ in one conversation and ‘virginity’ in the other. The mothers did that ‘cut it out she’s listening’ hand movement.

What? What’s wrong with teenage girls having the words ‘lube’ and ‘virginity’ explained to them? What is it going to turn themselves into some mouth frothing nyphomania?

There is nothing wrong with sex, pleasure or any part of the body. Safe and consentual. They’re the rules.

People don’t talk as freely and openly with girls about sex as they do with boys. They have gender defined sexual expectations and aspirations for kids. People are always making jokes about their teenage boys wanking in their rooms, but not girls.

Buy your thirteen year old a dildo and a bottle of lube. Explain that girls and boys masturbate, women and men masturbate, straight, gay, partnered and single masturbate. Alone and with others. It’s free, fabulous, a great stress release and the best way you can find out how your body works and what you like so you can share your pleasure with others. It may help prevent them jumping the fence and finding themselves in unhealthy and abusive sexual relationships because they haven’t worked out how to abracadabra themselves. It also may help them concentrate on their homework.

What all women and girls should be encouraged to achieve is F.O.S. Fuck Off Status.

When I was 19 I met a woman called Patricia O’Donnell who I am buddies with today. O‘Donnell is a successful restaurateur, businesswoman and all round brilliant dame. When I was 19, she didn’t know me. But I was sitting at the bar of her establishment The Queenscliff waiting for some of my mates, her staff. She said to me, apropos nothing, ‘You know what you need young lady. You need Fuck Off Status. You need to have your house, and your business and be able to tell anyone you don’t want to deal with to fuck off.’

Best advice I have ever been given. We need to encourage all women and girls to aim for fuck off status (not to dream of just marrying a footballer) and encourage all men and boys to enable and support it.

Women are 50% of the population, do two thirds of the work, earn 10% of the money and own 1% of the land. What do we want? Fuck Off Status! When do we want it? Fuck off.

‘The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off’

Gloria Steinem



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