TikTok user and mom of five daughters Cayce LaCorte is inspiring folks to rethink how they teach their children about sex.
Recently, another TikTok user asked parents to share something about the way they raised their kids that other people might think is weird—but is actually healthy.
LaCorte took the opportunity to talk about how she is raising her children to see virginity as a construct. And her video went viral.
In the video, LaCorte explains how there is no such thing as virginity:
“It is a patriarchal concept used to control women and serves no purpose — other than making women feel bad about ourselves. Just because some guy randomly sticks his penis in you at some point in your life does not change your worth, it does not change who you are, it doesn’t do anything other than it happened,” she says. “Sex is important. It’s a big deal. It should always be a big deal. It has nothing to do with your first time…it’s just ridiculous. The whole concept is ridiculous.”
LaCorte, who currently lives in Charleston, South Carolina with her five daughters ranging in age from 7 to 16, spoke to Buzzfeed about the positive impact her video is making.
She explained that the message in her video isn’t just about virginity, but about “the way we force arbitrary rules on ourselves and our kids and miss the big picture. Instead, we could focus on education about pregnancy, STDs, self-worth. How about, instead of making the first time special, make sure it’s always special because that’s the bare minimum you deserve.”
LaCorte says she starts speaking to her kids early about things like consent and body autonomy:
“I start young, focusing on body autonomy—not having to hug someone or let a relative kiss them. I make sure they understand the technical names for the parts of their bodies. I want them to know that it’s OK to cause a scene if they feel threatened or even just scared.”
“We have a talk about consent, saying ‘no’ when they want to stop, respecting others’ boundaries, healthy and unhealthy forms of love, what being controlled looks like, and how to be a good partner. I also talk about gender fluidity, what that looks like and respecting pronouns,” she added.
LaCorte also talks to her children about how gender norms can be destructive and it’s always important to question them: “I deconstruct gender norms, like boys can wear pink or makeup if they want.”
Although LaCorte is raising daughters, she said her approach would be absolutely the same: “You have to battle against toxic masculinity — which is like rolling a boulder up a hill, but it can be done. I’d give the same talks about consent, diversity, love, boundaries, permission, and openness.”
LaCorte hopes that her video and future projects (she is working on a book), will dismantle antiquated notions of gender as well as purity culture.
“Women are treated vastly different than men because its roots are steeped in a history of women being property. Can you imagine what the world would look like if society put half as much effort into making the world a safer place for women, instead of worrying that she’s not a virgin for her husband?”
I think it would look pretty damn awesome!
Featured image: TikTok