Last weekend, 20-year-old Tori Jenkins was asked to leave her Seymour, Tennessee apartment complex pool because her swimsuit was inappropriate.
This was her swimsuit:
In a viral Facebook post, her fiance Tyler Newman recounts how Tori was accused of wearing a “thong bathing suit” and was met with complaints after only being in the pool area for three minutes. She was asked to either change her bathing suit, cover it up with shorts, or leave.
After she went to the leasing office to complain, the consultant that was present told her to take pictures of herself to see how inappropriate the bathing suit was. She also told her to look into a mirror, and that if she didn’t have kids herself, she wouldn’t understand why the suit was deemed “inappropriate.” To make matters even worse, she was also told that her body was inappropriate for children to be around because it was “more curvy than others,” and, “there are a lot of teenage boys in this complex, and you don’t need to excite them.”
“Today my fiance was told that she is less important than how men feel around her,” Tyler wrote. “That Tori is less important than a man’s urges to be sexual towards her. I think she’s the most beautiful woman in the world, but I also respect her. I would never make her or any other woman feel less than what she’s worth because of her outfit or her looks. This is how rape culture continues to grow.”
Tyler went on to say that Tori felt embarrassed and cried because of how she felt after the incident.
“My fiance being told she should cover up on a 90 degree day in our own apartment pool because she will ‘excite teenage boys’ is bullshit,” he wrote. “I will not stand for this. My fiance should be able to wear a bathing suit without being sexualized and demeaned. She shouldn’t feel violated.”
The couple lives at Smoky Crossing Apartments, and according to Tyler, pays a monthly rent of “nearly $1000” plus a $300 maintenance fee. The complex released a statement to their ABC affiliate, saying:
“Smoky Crossing is a welcoming family community. Multiple residents within our community complained and expressed concerns regarding Ms. Jenks’ swimwear. In accordance with our pool policies, which are posted near the swimming area, one of our leasing consultants requested Ms. Jenks wrap a towel around herself when she was walking around the pool.
Ms. Jenkins was never asked to leave the pool. In addition, our leasing agent did not state that Ms. Jenkins swimwear would ‘excite teenage boys.’
Ms. Jenkins and Mr. Newman are valued members of our community. However, we feel it is inappropriate to equate requesting Ms. Jenkins to cover up with sexual harassment or ‘rape culture.’ Smoky Crossing denounces harassment in all forms.”
The couple spoke to a Fox affiliate and said the experience was “degrading, overall.” The one-piece is reportedly from Forever 21, but the company hasn’t released a statement about the situation yet.
Tyler’s Facebook post has 35k reactions, 15k comments, and over 30k shares. People have mixed reactions, with comments ranging from “She needs to apologize to that place immediately,” to “There’s nothing wrong with what your fiancee is wearing in the slightest- she has a beautiful body that many women (including myself) would love to have.” Someone else even said, “I hope you absolutely ruin them when you sue.”
It’s hard to consider Tori’s swimsuit inappropriate when there are so many other options available that show even more skin. It wasn’t even a bikini, nor did it show cleavage. Nevertheless, the incident just goes to show that society has a long way to go until views about what’s “appropriate” and what isn’t changes. A hint: if she feels comfortable and she isn’t naked, she should be able to wear what she wants. Let’s move along.
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