Growing up girl in America is tough. We are simultaneously told to be vigilant keepers of our sacred virginity and also to be ready to whip off our tops if the Girls Gone Wild camera crew shows up on spring break. We are deemed to possess a priceless, powerful, can’t-get-it-back-after-you-lose-it gift from the big guy upstairs, but we’re expected to cheat the system a little, too.
The virgin/whore dichotomy is such old news that won’t die. Therese Shechter’s new documentary How to Lose Your Virginity attempts to deconstruct the systems that foist these expectations on us. Virginity is not an instruction manual for how to get rid of your pesky purity ball and chain; rather, it uses firsthand accounts from experts and us normal folk, too, to get inside the myths surrounding sexuality.
Shechter has finished a rough cut of her film, but she needs your help to finish it. Despite being unfinished, How to Lose Your Virginity has already earned spots in the IFP Film Market, the Paley Centery pitching forum, and the Hot Docs Documentary Festival Master Class. To complete the film and pitch it to distributors, Shechter has turned to Kickstarter to raise the funds she needs. She says, “There is little if any funding for independent media that focuses on the lives of young women, especially films like How to Lose Your Virginity which encourage young people to challenge the damaging messages in the pop culture landscape.”
The timeliness of this feature is incredible: Rush Limbaugh is slinging ‘slut’ around at every woman who uses birth control, abstinence only programs dominate many states’ sex education programs, and women can sell their virginity online to the highest bidder. What’s all the fuss about? Shechter gets us talking about our V-cards (whether we’ve cashed them in or whether we’re holding on tight) and creates an important documentary in the process.
Check out a teaser for the documentary and to donate to her project, head over to the film’s Kickstarter page
For more information on the project, check out Shechter’s blog.
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