It continues to baffle me how men have not learned from their predecessors like Donald Trump, Liam Neeson, and Kanye West to shut up and quit while they are ahead. Alas, here we are yet again watching another career crumble. Rapper T.I. recently took to the Ladies Like Us podcast to randomly reveal that he has been accompanying his now 18 year-old daughter to the gynecologist every year since she turned 16. Why, you may ask? To verify that his daughter’s hymen is still intact. What he’s hoping to gain from this information is the reassurance of knowing his daughter is still a virgin. Anybody with basic knowledge of female anatomy that extends beyond an Only Fans subscription would know what a fallacy this is. It is unnecessarily invasive to his daughter and her personal business. Frankly, his behavior demonstrates misogyny, and emotional abuse in one fell swoop.
Through my search on social media, a lot of people took the biggest issue with the fact that his daughter is 18. While that is true, authority over her body and what she does with it ended at the age in which he is no longer required to be in the exam room with her. Usually that occurs around age 14. She cannot be honest with her doctor with her father breathing down her neck. Since a hymen can’t determine virginity, the whole process is redundant. While it should be empowering for his daughter to know that the men in her life share genuine interest in her health, T.I. has instead turned this into strange obsession. There are more effective ways to ensure a child is not growing up too fast that do not include coercion and invasion of privacy. If he does not trust his daughter to make appropriate decisions, maybe he should look into improving his own parenting.
More importantly, this is abusive for a multitude of reasons. The main one that stuck out being the time of the visits. By T.I’s own admission, he waits until a few days after her birthday. Once she has received presents. It reeks of the “See what I did for you? You should be able to do this for me” mentality that most abusers share. It also sets the expectation that males in her life can control her in a similar manner. What are the repercussions for her when T.I. doesn’t get the results he wants? Is she scolded, financially cut off, kicked out? What exactly does her value become? This can cause intimacy issues and emotional instability in her dating life. I choose to believe that he isn’t actually abusive, but the behavior is definitely reminiscent of toxicity that is constantly present in abusive relationships.
Overall, this situation is extremely creepy to people with common sense. It is shocking to me that the other women in his life would allow such a barbaric practice. However, it’s also a possibility that he thinks he has acquired this right as the breadwinner of his household and nobody else has a say in it. If you are wondering, T.I. has two teenage sons younger than his daughter and he does not require that they physically prove that they have maintained their virginity. Furthermore, on his show he has taken a lax approach to his 15 year old son expressing his sexual activity. The double-standard is repulsive. When you consider how he has publicly treated women like trash, including his own wife, maybe there shouldn’t be any shock regarding his misogyny.