The Lolita Effect: Women Recall Inappropriate Remarks From Childhood

From the moment girls enter the public world, it can feel like they're being judged. We're too much or too little of so many different things: beautiful, thin, and appealing. When we're young, the comments adults make about us don't have the gross aftertaste that they would now.

Proving that these aren't isolated incidents, many women took to Reddit to share some of their cringiest experiences from when they were younger.

Striking a Pose

One woman shared that when she was 11, someone called her a “h**ker.” OP was standing with her back against a wall with one leg bent at the knee, her foot up against the wall. Someone walking by told her she shouldn't stand like that because “that's how hookers stand.”

She wasn't the only one, either. Another user said a teacher told her she looked like “the prostitute in Pretty Woman” because she was wearing boots and chewing gum. She was 15 at the time.

Any girl standing seems to remind adults of sex workers it seems. Yet another woman shared that when she was around 14 or 15, she was standing outside (in the middle of the day) for maybe five minutes tops for a ride. Two guys came outside at the restaurant next door to where the writer was waiting and started smoking and making comments about her.

While she was waiting, she overheard the men “wondering how much I cost them, and what would they do to me like I wasn't even there to hear them.” Now in her 30s, she still remembers every detail about those few minutes.

Birthing Hips

Women who have curves have been hearing about their “birthing hips” long before they were even capable of getting pregnant.

For one Redditor, it started before she was a teenager. “My family told me I had ‘birthing hips' when I was 11,” they wrote.

“Me too,” someone else replied. “My hips developed first and I remember people constantly commenting on my backside from a young age. Yeah it’s a nice compliment now I’m 23 but being 10 I didn’t understand it.”

Another Redditor said that one day, the family doctor they had when growing up pinched the back of her arm between my wrist and elbow and said “You want to watch that you don’t get fat.” She was only 12. “These sorts of silly comments,” she says,  “are what can drive girls to eating disorders.”

At nine years old, another woman’s uncle whispered: “it's time you ask your mommy to get you a bra, I can see your little cupcakes growing in.”

The Priest Tale

One user also shared her encounters with a priest when she was 6-8 years old. The priest at their church would constantly tell her how beautiful and good-looking she was. Plus, he would sometimes stare at her and shake her hand a little too long. She admitted that nothing else ever happened, but looking back, it's hard to believe that the priest wasn't up to something.

Similarly, another woman shared that when she was 15, a priest told her she had “bedroom eyes.” The worst part? People heard him say it and either laughed it off or acted like it was a “huge compliment.”

“You’re Smart”

Being brilliant isn't something to be ashamed of. But for women, being told they're smart often comes off as a backhanded compliment. “If you can't be pretty,” many have heard, “at least you're smart.”

“I got told this MULTIPLE times by a bunch of different people,” the user says. She was subject to bullying in school about everything — her name, clothes, shoes, hair — and one of the biggest bullies constantly hammered home the idea she was ugly. “I'm still ugly,” she added, “but I learned a long time ago to just accept that I peaked at the age of 2 as far as beauty/cuteness and it's all been downhill since then.”

You can find more gross comments directed toward young women in the original Reddit story here.

This post was produced and syndicated by Wealth Of Geeks.

Amaka Chukwuma is a freelance content writer with a BA in linguistics. As a result of her insatiable curiosity, she writes in various B2C and B2B niches. Her favorite subject matter, however, is in the financial, health, and technological niches. She has contributed to publications like Buttonwood Tree and FinanceBuzz in the past and currently writes for Wealth of Geeks.