Forgive me for my long absence. Posting will resume, but there will probably still be a few weeks between posts.
I have been as lax in reading blogs as I have in writing one in recent months. I have limited concentration for serious matters these days, so my reading has been mostly focused on things like Hyperbole and a Half and Dr. Boli’s Celebrated Magazine. So yes, I have been AWOL in comment sections as well as in my own letters to the Times.
This is just going to be a short post, but I wanted to discuss something I’ve noticed, though it’s rather embarrassing for me to talk about. I am not going to post any links because they would be to yucky stuff, but the various blogs and articles I happen upon have given me reason to believe that women today are engaging in all sorts of sexual acts which just a few decades ago were, to say the least, highly unusual. Of course, most of my friends are either religious sorts who aren’t on the open market, or else nerds who are too busy reading the complete Sherlock Holmes for the fourth time to be on the open market, so I haven’t personally talked to any of these women who are, according to various accounts and allegedly scientific surveys, getting up to all sorts of things I wish I didn’t even know about.
I don’t think I’m that much of a prude. It isn’t as if I automatically condemn every act that is a little, er, creative (though one should be married to the person one is creative with). But a lot of these acts I’m reading about are dangerously unhygienic and people who engage in them are very likely to end up seeing a doctor.
More disturbingly, one article about this which I recently read in train-wreck fascination announced that a large number of the women surveyed had not only said that they had engaged in a certain act that very few women of my generation could ever have been persuaded to, they had also asserted that they had greatly enjoyed it. Male writers and commenters, naturally, gobbled this information up uncritically, and are doubtless sending the links to their girlfriends, much like Florence King’s college suitor who in a moment of passion assured her that it had been scientifically proven that women cannot get pregnant their first time. (I think he actually believed this, but it shows how little most men understand women. Miss King remarked that if he had said something desperate or romantic she probably would have come across, but scientific data might as well have been a cold shower.)
But as someone who actually occupies a female body, I am more than skeptical. Some of these activities, it is physically impossible for a woman to derive any satisfaction from. If men believe these articles, it just shows that decades of effort on the part of sex-positive feminists to enlighten men about what gives women pleasure have been for naught; apparently men can’t even remember where we keep our nerve bundles.
And I must note that players and aspiring players are not the only men subject to this sort of delusion. Men in general are clueless about women. Miss King pointed out that many men enviously confuse “the female ability to be penetrated with the female desire to be penetrated”. As if to prove it, a traditionalist man told The Thinking Housewife that he knew a woman who discovered self-gratification in college and achieved satisfaction ten or more times a day, and he said that he had heard similar stories from “countless” other women. I say humbug. Maybe there are a few women out there, one in every 100,000 or so, who can actually do this, but I think the young lady who told him this was more likely making it up to shock or titillate him. Good heavens, gentlemen, ask your wives before you go accepting this sort of thing as fact.
So why are women saying this?
Well, time was, men hoped to find a woman who had qualities they valued, like loyalty, chastity, and kindness. Certainly they hoped to find these qualities in a pleasing shape, but when only a few women were willing to consider premarital sex, men had little choice but to consider what life with the pretty girl they were ogling would be like. Would she be a shrew making his home life an ordeal? Would she beat their children or run off with the milkman?
Now, of course, attractive men are able to pick and choose whichever is the most exciting and novel member of his current harem. I think that women are enduring these repulsive acts and claiming to enjoy them out of competition, in hopes of seeming like the flashiest product on the shelf.
Like most conservatives, I have a large libertarian streak, and I am reluctant to simply recriminalize pornography. But the “pornification” of popular culture we are seeing is completely unacceptable, and it does seem that the ready availability of porn is jading people. If a young man has already seen the conventional acts depicted hundreds of times, he is apt to find it uninspiring in real life. He will require something more, well, novel to keep his interest alive. This is based on anecdotal evidence, but I suspect that excessive exposure to “normal” pornography makes men more apt to develop fetishes. And, well, there are fetishes and there are fetishes. I doubt many women would object to finding that their husbands were fixated on garter belts, but not all preoccupations are so benign.
It will likely take worldwide disaster to break Westerners of our current sexual unhealthiness. In the meantime, gentlemen, don’t believe everything you read. Women can and do lie if they think it will make them more attractive to desirable men.
On the other hand, I suspect that once a modern woman believes that she has a man committed to her, she is going to have an unprecedented number of headaches to escape the acts she claimed to enjoy so much.
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