Friday, June 8, 2007

Because your wedding vows didn’t make you a housecleaning sex-bot

Being interested in women’s issues often means that you have to read unpleasant, backwards statements written by stupid – or just careless – people. Sometimes, such anti-feminist articles are so egregiously misogynistic and so crazy that they’re almost hilarious. Hey, in another context, the whole “feminists are turned on by murdering babies” affair could have been a brilliant piece of satire. Such assertions are so fucked up, you really need to be a crazy phallocrat to endorse them.

But what frustrates me and freaks me out the most are those articles that are equally egregiously misogynistic but which, by some sort of pop psychology smoke and mirrors, are afforded credibility and are hailed as thoughtful and needed reflections on human experience.

Such as this one.

When Globe and Mail’s columnist Sarah Hampson named her article about men’s sexual needs in marriage “Sex, or he’s your ex”, boy did she mean it.

The penis rules.

This, people, is actually the first sentence of her piece. You can already guess where she is going.
A few lines below, she reaffirms the point:

The penis rules. Or should, anyway.

By which she means that:

1) Men have a HUGE sex drive, and thus typically feel horny all the time;
2) Men have a huge sex drive because their masculinity and ego depends on it;
3) Women don’t understand their husbands’ sex drive, because they’re emotional beings.
4) Women unjustifiably deny their husbands’ required dose of sex, on flimsy grounds, e.g. all they want to do is talk about their day, they want to share feelings, they’re physically exhausted after having taken care of the kids all day, cleaned the house, done the laundry and fixed dinner, they’re pregnant, have just given birth or are nursing, they simply don’t want to;
5) When you’re a man, being denied sex by your WIFE is “emasculating”;
6) Men who are not getting any from their wives and who cannot get the same egotistical fulfilment “through sports” or “through work by the accumulation of money” will get on their wives;
7) It’s a wife’s duty to service her husband and submit to his sexual demands, even though she doesn’t want to, if she wants to keep her marriage on the rails.

Got that ladies? YOU, and only you (that means, not that jerk you’re married to) are responsible if he cheats on you and/or leaves you for a sexier model. If entirely your fault if the marriage isn’t working. So stop being that selfish and frigid and follow Ms. Hampson’s thoughtful advice.

I remember an acquaintance of mine complaining about her husband's expectation of sex. She had two young sons at the time, and she was a wonderful hands-on and attentive mother. There were lunches to be made, laundry to finish, dinner to make, homework to help with, errands to run, and just before she passed out from exhaustion, a husband to do. And she did, because if nothing else, she is highly responsible. (And still married, by the way.) [emphasis added]

Wow. Are wee still in the 50’s? I don’t remember ever getting that memo.

Seriously, how is the fact that you’re still married at this point supposed to show that you’re “responsible”? If you get to do all the domestic work, in addition to working a full-time job, and your husband keeps whining about how you’re not properly taking care of him, then the wise thing to do is undoubtedly to just dump the ungrateful bastard.

But I guess in Ms. Hampson’s world, female “selfishness” is way worse than male utter lack of empathy:

“It's not healthy for men to feel pathetic about their urges and shame about their desire. It's not just their masculinity they are expressing through sex but also their lesser masculine qualities, their tenderness, their vulnerability, their desire to give pleasure and receive it,” she explains.

So, to summarize her point, men need to be fucked by their wives to feel manlier, so that they can express non-manly qualities? Uh?!? And please, let’s reflect on the alleged “desire to give pleasure and receive it”. What a hypocrisy! The part about giving pleasure is merely an attempt to comfort themselves. How much pleasure can one give to a partner who’d rather not have sex at all?

(Also note that this statement presupposes that such men are actually able to please their wives in bed. This has yet to be established.)

It's easy for the women to just brush it off, and say, ‘All he wants is sex.' What they should be asking is, ‘Why am I never interested? What happened to my own desires?'

Here you go. If you’re so exhausted after working two jobs (i.e. your real job and the part of the domestic work that your husband is too cheap to do himself) that you’re simply not interested in “taking care” of him by sexually servicing him, then there’s OBVIOUSLY something wrong with you, honey. YOU are the one who should feel responsible for the problem, and YOU are the one who should be working to “solve” it.

And here comes the scary part, shortly followed by the mandatory sexual objectification of women part.

Many men, not being the greatest communicators, resort to anger when they're not getting the intimacy they crave. They will say lack of sex makes them feel “they were sold a bill of goods,” as one guy explains, since “women are much more sexually aggressive and suggestive during the courting stage, and inexperienced men can be fooled by that.

Excuse me? “Bill of goods”? “Fooled by that”? Is it just me or is she actually a wacky version of the caveat emptor rule to heterosexual relationships? WTF?!?

For men, on the other hand, a romp in bed is stress therapy. “For us, it can be like golf or watching television,” admits a source from the world of men.

Awnnn. How flattering. Nothing turns me on like having my feminine charms compared to a wide-screen plasma TV.

You also gotta love the “for us, men” tone. Because, you know, it’s not as if women actually enjoyed sex, or actually knew that it’s not just for making babies.


Of course, for women, talking is like golf. (Confused yet?) “Women want to emotionally share and talk about their day,” the man continues.

Still married to his wife of 21 years, with whom he has two children, he should be called Mr. Highly Evolved. But he didn't get there on his own. All that wisdom about how women and men think differently comes from years of couples therapy.

“For men, it's like Chinese water torture to be talking about something endlessly,” he says. “Guys think, ‘Just fix it.' So when the wife says she wants to be asked how she is, the man goes, ‘What? We've got to have an hour and a half discussion about emotional connection before you feel like having sex? What happened to sex on the kitchen floor?'

Poor thing. Forced to communicate for a whole hour and a half with the person he chose to spend the rest of his life with. What a torture indeed. Someone please send this poor guy a check or something. ‘Really breaks my heart.

But if interacting with another (yet female, thus uninteresting) human being is such a pain in the ass, why do such men marry at all?

Silly goose! Here’s why!

“Men marry for two reasons,” she states. “They're proud to be with that woman socially. Look,” she adds in best-girlfriend whisper, “we both know women who have sex with men who aren't seen with them publicly. The second reason men marry is sexual compatibility.”

Bravo! Now, at last, our crazy acid trip into the 50’s is complete with the trophy wife truth! Bravo I say!

And now for the great finale:

Which brings me to a final bit of good advice. Be a lady in public and a whore in the bedroom. And help him understand that before talking dirty, the whore sometimes needs to have a cuddly chat about her day.

So, to wrap up, women need to be dirty whores in the bedroom in order not to be evil ball-crushers. On the other hand, the same women, in order not to bring eternal shame to their husbands, need to be all virginal and sexless.

I guess Ms. Hampson really meant that only men should not feel ashamed of their sexual urges and desires…

With the Whore-Madonna dichotomy, Ms. Hampson brilliantly completes the exercise of compiling in a single hateful piece a sample of practically all the existing stereotypes on heterosexual relationships and sexual behaviour.

You’ve got to admire the effort. I could not possibly have done any better.


If you’re not too pissed/depressed about this article already, have a look at the comments following the article online.

Your friendly neighbourhood housecleaning sex-bots, i.e. "responsible" wives...

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