Kanye West told Kim Kardashian that he does not like it when pictures of her are “too sexy.”
The exchange was featured in Sunday night’s episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians. The rapper was specifically talking about Kim’s 2019 Met Gala look. However, it seems clear he wanted the message to apply more generally. Kim however, was not having it.
Let’s be clear, Kim is 100% in the right here. For a whole host of reasons, the biggest being…
…This Is Controlling Behavior
Your romantic partner is an individual outside of yourself. They can and should have an identity that is their own. If you listen carefully to Kanye’s language, it’s all about how Kim’s identity feeds his own. He says “I’ve just went through this transition from being a rapper, like looking at all these girls and looking at my wife, like oh my girl needs to be just like the other girls showing her body off […] and I didn’t realize that that was affecting my soul and my spirit as someone who’s married and loved.”
In the past, Kanye expected Kim to use her sex appeal to bolster his image. Her identity was his accessory. He takes for granted that he has the right to decide Kim presents herself. Now that Kanye is changing his image, he expects Kim to do the same. Because he can’t grasp that her identity can exist in a way that doesn’t serve his. When he says that sexy pictures of her now affect his “soul” and “spirit” all it really means is that he doesn’t like it. (That language is also manipulative for reasons we’ll get to).
People dictating what their partner wears is a big red flag. It is not healthy for a romantic partner to feel entitled to make your decisions for you. Kanye’s “concerns” are simply an attempt to exert control.
Which Kim pushes back on when she says “just because you’re on a journey and you’re on your transformation doesn’t mean that I’m in the same spot with you.”
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the moment Kim stands reminds Kanye that she is her own person is the moment he storms out of the room.
Kim herself sums this point up best. Before telling Kanye that she isn’t going through the same transformation she is, she reminds him that “You built me up to be this sexy person and confident person.”
Kanye admits in that very conversation that he encouraged Kim to be sexy in the past. But more than that, he used her sex appeal to promote his business. Kanye doesn’t use Kim to promote Yeezy clothes because she looks frumpy in them. Her attractiveness is key to the branding.
To use sexy pictures of your wife to promote your fashion line, then turn around and say that sexy pictures of her hurt your soul, is astonishingly hypocritical.
Does A Corset Really Hurt Your Soul?
This is the part where we get back to that manipulative language. The way Kanye says that this thing he doesn’t like hurts his “soul” and his “spirit” comes across an attempt to instill guilt. This isn’t just something that bothers him. It is damaging to his soul.
It is also a very unfair way to use one’s faith to win an argument. In couples where either one or both is religious, the religion can become a means of manipulation. When two equals disagree there’s a fair chance that either of them will get what they want. But when one partner has decided that their position is the more godly one, they are less likely to encounter resistance, no matter how warranted it may be. Kanye seems to be trying to tell Kim that her clothes get in the way of his spiritual journey. Which is…unfortunate.
Ultimately, how one dresses is a form of self-expression. You should be wary of people who don’t think you have the right to control it.