To overcome the violence that devastates people from early ages, we must eliminate the coercion we suffer from childhood to socialize into subordinating our lives to the pursuit of power. Other people become instruments and proof of our power. Affective-sexual relationships no longer aim for love or sex, but for the number and status of those we have conquered. In recent years, the term “bodycount” has emerged as a social practice in which the number of people with whom one has had affective-sexual relationships is counted, under the false belief that the more experience a person has, the better the relationship will be.

Thus, it is not uncommon for language about these relationships to be filled with ugliness, ridiculing and saying very dirty things about those casual partners, parts of their bodies, or their sexual practices. It is also not uncommon for foul language to be used in comments about our own casual partners, bodies, and sexual practices.

This discourse is so totalitarian in pornography, social media, series, and schools that there are teenagers who come to believe that everything is the same, that there is no other option. People and relationships in their environment that do not submit to that ugliness are quickly attacked in an attempt to tarnish them.

We have published testimonies of teenagers who consider that they have already tarnished themselves, dirtying the public image of friends who have not done so, attributing derogatory hookups they have not had so that their cleanliness does not contrast with their already sad self-image and public image. In an article published in Journal of Urban Health, a testimony is shown that exemplifies this action:

Amaia: They take pictures of you or tell everyone.

Silvia: Or they post it.

Rosa: Maybe you’re not even hooking up with him, but [the photos] catch you in a position that…

Silvia: Yes, it looks like you’re kissing him…

María: Or that you’re very close to him and it looks like something that’s not…

Eva: Well, that photo will be there your whole life, it will gnaw at you until you die. The photo will follow you to the grave.

María: It’s been shared, saved, screenshots taken…

Eva: Some people end up committing suicide because it hurts so much.

This totalitarian destruction of teenagers is broken with brave testimonies from people who have made a different choice against all odds, a choice for love and not for power, for friendship and not for betrayal, for beauty and not for violence. It is evident throughout life that people who make this choice for love maintain their health and attractiveness much better than those who opt for power. It is evident that this choice overcomes violence and that power fosters it. Let’s say it loud and clear, let’s prevent brave individuals who make these testimonies public from being tarnished.

Garazi Álvarez
Lidia Bordanova
Ane López de Aguileta
Garazi López de Aguileta
Ane Olabarría
Ramón Flecha

[Image: Freepik]

Por Garazi Álvarez

Profesora e investigadora en Educación en la Universidad del País Vasco