Last weekend I watched the movie "Easy A." A little trashy, a little tacky, a little really funny. Basically, this girl is made into a pariah because she supposedly had sex (once!) and then she decides to fake live up to the rumors.
First lesson: I'm glad I'm not in high school anymore.
Now, I realize Hollywood tends to liven things up to make movies interesting, but this whole idea still struck me as really odd. What were other high schools like? Did having sex with one person make you a slut? (Here I am of course just referring to girls; no guy who has sex will ever be anything but a locker room hero. But that's another subject for another day.)
See, I knew a couple of people who'd had sex by the time I finished 8th grade. It wasn't the norm, but there was more than one person. Halfway through my high school career, I wouldn't have been surprised if half of my class was having sex or at least had had sex once. I knew girls who got pregnant. I knew the boys who impregnated them. Sex happened. Rumors didn't so much.
In fact, on reflecting of my four years of high school, I could only think of one sex-related rumor. Sadly, I heard it in my LDS seminary class, about a girl who was my friend but who was a little off the beaten path from most of the -- dare I say it? -- self-centered and shallow youth with whom I went to church. One of the guys heard she was pregnant. He never said, "Kathy's pregnant," mind you. He stuck with the ballsy, "Is it true that she's pregnant?" Because clearly, simply propagating a rumor makes you less accountable when the wind starts blowing those feathers every which way.
Kathy, incidentally, left the church when she went to college. I can't entirely say that I blame her. The gospel was still true, but the people who made up the church had let her down.