Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Why I Like Shagging by Greta Christina

Perhaps not something I would have normally chosen to run with, but we have the nonsensical ''abstinence'' theme running at the moment, courtesy of tricky Ricky Perry.

Puritan Pundits Should Chill Out -- Here Are 5 Reasons I'm Happy I've Had Lots of Casual Sex

Things don't have to be permanent to be valuable. A fleeting moment can have as much value as a stone monument.
By Greta Christina
August 28, 2011

The phenomenon of women who have sex for its own sake seems to baffle many people. It's widely believed that women have sex for love, commitment, poor self-control, to manipulate men, to please men, to make babies, to sooth their low self-esteem, and just about any reason at all other than their own pleasure. (While men, of course, are rutting horndogs who just want to stick it in the nearest wet hole available.) Sex, according to this trope, is by its nature a commodity that women possess and men are trying to obtain... and the phenomenon of women who are "giving it away," who are defying these assumptions and treating sex as a pleasurable interaction between equals, is making the media piss all over themselves.

Mark Regnerus, Slate: "If women were more fully in charge of how their relationships transpired, we'd be seeing, on average, more impressive wooing efforts, longer relationships, fewer premarital sexual partners, shorter cohabitations, and more marrying going on."

Rachel Simmons, relationship advice columnist for Teen Vogue: "These letters worry me. They signify a growing trend in girls' sexual lives where they are giving themselves to guys on guys' terms. They hook up first and ask later. "

Bill O'Reilly: "Many women who get pregnant are blasted out of their minds when they have sex."

Susan Walsh, Hooking Up Smart: "They cannot see that as she [self-proclaimed proud-and-happy slut Jaclyn Friedman] proclaims her detachment from sex, she gets emotionally wounded every single time. They take heart from her proclamation that sluthood is a healing thing. Ms. Friedman is a hot mess. Craiglist Casual Encounters was not a miracle, it was a disaster that broke her heart again. I hope she does find Love, the whole enchilada."

Laura Sessions Stepp, author of Unhooked: How Young Women Pursue Sex, Delay Love and Lose at Both... oh, just look at the title.

Then there's the piece that got me staying up until four in the morning writing about this in the first place: Christian author Don Miller, who recently asked his female readers (and his male ones, in a separate post) if they've ever had casual sex, and if so, why. Miller doesn't ask this in a neutral way, a way that expresses a genuine desire for an honest answer. He asks in a way that makes it obvious what he thinks the answer will be -- whatever the reason is, it must be bad, bad, bad. In fact, he's asking in a way that totally slants the answers he's likely to get. He's asking "why some girls give up sex easily" (as if sex for women is always a surrender) and "do you use sex for some kind of social power or to make yourself feel good?"

It's like a push-poll -- a political poll designed to elicit a particular response, so you can shape people's opinions and make your position seem more popular than it really is.

And this push-poll tendency is shared by many of those who ask, "Why on earth would women want casual hookups?" They're not asking, "Why do some women have casual sex?" They're asking, "Why on earth would some women have casual sex, when it's so clearly a bad idea that will do them and other women harm and is obviously not in their best interest?" And they're doing this despite research showing that casual sex isn't, in fact psychologically harmful for young adults. They're basing their questions on the common assumption that women's natural state is to keep their legs closed unless they've got their hands on marriage or commitment... and that women who don't are some sort of baffling phenomenon that needs to be explained.

So I thought I'd try to explain it.

I've had a lot of experience with casual sex. It's been a while, and I'm not particularly interested in it anymore. But for many years, pretty much all the sex I had fell somewhere on the "casual" spectrum. Personal ad hookups; occasional sex with friends; sex clubs and sex parties; ongoing sexual friendships... that's what my sex life looked like for a long time.

And needless to say -- but I'm going to say it anyway -- a lot of this casual sex was a good idea. A wonderful idea, in fact. A lot of it was done for excellent, healthy reasons. And the effect it's had on my sex life and my love life has been overwhelmingly positive.

You want to know why I had it? Here's why.

1: Fun. This is first and foremost. In fact, all the other answers I'm about to give ultimately boil down to this one: Sex is fun. Sex feels good. Sex is its own justification. And that was every bit as true when I was single as when I've been coupled. I had sex for the same reason billions of other people have sex: Pleasure. Period.

We evolved to enjoy sex. We are descended from thousands of generations of ancestors who really, really liked to fuck. Asking why people have sex casually is like asking why people eat food casually. Eating feels good. Food is fun. It's often more fun when it's meaningful and done with people we love. But that's not always an option, and it can still be pretty darned fun when it's grabbed on the fly with acquaintances and strangers. We evolved to want to eat food. And we evolved to want to have sex. Like, duh.

2: Experimentation. When I was having casual sex with a lot of different people, I was also having lots of different kinds of sex. There are lots of reasons for that: some obvious, some not so obvious. The most obvious one is that my partners liked different things, so I tried the things they liked, to see if I might like them too. Plus, at the time, I felt more comfortable asking for and trying some of my freakier desires with fuckbuddies and casual hookups than I had with long-term romantic partners. I do wish that hadn't been true -- I wish I'd been less shy about experimenting with my LTR partners in my younger days -- but the whole stupid virgin/whore thing can get pretty deeply embedded, and it took many years of screwing around to get it (mostly) hacked out of my brain.

And that experimenting was awesome. I figured out an immense amount about my sexuality during my casual sex years. I learned a huge amount about which of my fantasies were really things I liked, and which were things I just liked thinking about. I figured out that yes, I really was a dyke, and yes, I really was kinky. And I discovered things about my sexuality that I never would have imagined if I hadn't tried them. My sex life is about a billion times more satisfying now that I know what I do and don't like in bed... and now that I have the courage to ask for it. Like, duh.

I haven't stopped learning and experimenting now that I'm married. And plenty of people do plenty of experimenting with just one partner, and do it entirely happily. But that's not how it played out for me. And when I think about who I was in my twenties, I'm not sure it could have played out that way for me. When I think about who I was in my 20s, I think casual sex with a large-ish number of people was the only way I was going to get those experiments under my belt. As it were.

3: Pleasure without unwanted commitment. As you may have figured out from thLinkis piece, I was single for a long time. After my divorce and before I fell in love with Ingrid, I was single for 12 years. And they were good years. Most of them, anyway. Staying single for so long was a conscious decision, and it was one of the best decisions I've made in my life. After my divorce, I was pretty confused, with some seriously messed-up ideas about love and relationships, and I had a strong tendency to be attracted to needy, fucked-up drug addicts. Staying single for 12 years gave me a chance to get my head screwed on straight; to re-train myself to be attracted to people who had their act together; to wait for the right partner instead of jumping into commitment with whoever was available; to learn that I could be happy and fulfilled on my own. In fact, my relationship and marriage with Ingrid wouldn't be nearly as strong if I hadn't been single -- and happily single -- for so long. Go to page three

Lots more repression under the Abstinence or Sex Prudery tags.

From a previous post.

....And it don't come any realer than Alexyss Tylor telling it like it is. This is one Lady that knows her subject, likes the practice, and loves her homework. Way to go girl.

Taken from another previous post.

But then, and there is no allowance for this display of self induced hysteria; but then we have to round off, a couple of minutes and a couple of cunts from Texas, I'm sorry but there's no more befitting description I can think of for these two sanctimonious little fuck cunts for Jesus. The first little cunt is bad enough, but the second one!? fuck me! I haven't got the words for her, other than to say, pity the bloke this little cunt traps at the alter, pity him indeed.

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