Thursday, January 03, 2008

Ask The Sexperts!

I only just found this piece by "sex expert" (as you like, I'm not bad myself) Dr Pam Spurr - it's a couple of months old. The feature in The Times claims that feminism "is killing sex" and - in their own words - that career women are risking their relationships by saying "no". Hmmm.

Now to start totally the wrong way about I should point out that her concluding paragraph I (almost) wholeheartedly agree with:

"Never be bullied into sexual activity that turns you off or be pressured into sex that doesn’t satisfy you. But always be prepared to discuss your feelings and desires and listen to his. Hopefully, that will improve your sex life and help to strengthen your relationship in other ways, too."

I just don't get why it's listen to HIS feelings and desires. Doesn't she mean YOUR PARTNER'S or is Dr Spurr's advice only for women?

Well evidently the article is about women and what we're doing wrong. Here are some choice extracts:

"With increasing frequency, women in their twenties, thirties and forties take a pragmatic, postfeminist view that sex is something over which they have no need to negotiate."

Surely negotiating is a pretty odd way of sorting out what you do in bed. How about doing all the things that both you and your partner enjoy and want to do. Negotiation implies some sort of compromise - doing things you don't really want to.

" When [case study woman] found that the stress of their differences diminished her sex drive, she felt completely justified in suggesting separate bedrooms. As she recounted to me – with bitter regret, after their divorce – sex had been the last thing on her mind. Her biggest mistake was not considering what was on his mind."

Weird - has anyone else on here ever moved into separate bedrooms from their partner without thinking this might have some impact on their sex life?

"too many women see the sexual side of their lives as something to be claimed completely and utterly as their own"

Yes, it is. Who the hell else "claims" my sex life?

"At the risk of being called ... antifeminist, I’d go so far as to say that for both partners sex could be considered a duty, if it is something that one partner knows would make the other happy."

Personally I think I would rather eat my own vomit than have sex with someone who was doing it out of duty. Also having sex out of a sense of duty when you don't really want to is more or less guaranteed to put you off wanting it again.

"Does he really want to go up on the roof to repair a leak on a Sunday afternoon? Does she really want to take out the rubbish in the pouring rain? No, but partners in relationships do such things because they know that it makes the other happy. Sex should be seen in the same light."

Sex should be seen in the same light as taking out the rubbish or repairing a leaky roof? How bad is your sex life Dr Spurr? And no they're not comparable because sex is an act of intimacy so it makes no sense to do it unless both partners actively want to.

"Why should the sexual area of a relationship be ringed by an emotional fence that makes it a no-go zone for discussion, while other areas are discussed openly, argued over and resolved?"

This Dr Spurr is only true in your world, everyone else I know talks about sex.

"I have spoken to a fair few thirty-something women who settle down with a “decent chap” knowing that he’ll make a good father. On producing babies, though, many such men find themselves left out in the cold when they still desire the sexual warmth that they initially enjoyed. "

Here's some advice for men feeling sexually frustrated after their wife has had a baby: put some more hours into taking care of the child, make sure your wife gets at least some good night's sleep and maybe she'll feel up to it again. Don't for crying out loud suggest it's her "duty" to put out after two days in labour and two hours sleep.

"[If you don't have much sex with your man] You may find ... that he will seek sexual satisfaction without you. I certainly don’t justify infidelity but I can often understand why it happens. In contrast, when a woman’s sexual needs are denied, Heaven help the man responsible."

So Dr Spurr can sort-of understand why men not getting much sex would go and have affairs but considers it outrageous for women in the same situation to complain about it. Remind me next time I'm seeking a relationship counselor not to call her.

"In other cases I have found an even more disturbing attitude: that it’s fine to use occasional sex in a cold-hearted and calculated way as a favour or bartering tool for jobs well done by the man."

So we should be negotiating about sex, and it is the same as household chores but we shouldn't be negotiating household chores in exchange for sex. Keep your story straight please!

And as if the story itself wasn't bad enough there are comments after it...

"All women treat sex as a weapon. Lower testosterone, lower needs. But they have the power to choose, something we men do not have. And so they use us. Over, and over, and over, and over...

Gerbil, Los Angeles, U.S.A."

Hmm... Gerbil (fitting rodent-based name by the way) if you don't have the power to choose whether or not you have sex, you should hand yourself as a potential sex offender.

And then this one which I think rather speaks for itself:

"I'm a 44 yr old man having twice a year sex.I am not a good husband ,i dont wash up,i empty the dishwasher;i dont do the laundry.I pay bill for the washer -dryer and iron my clothes and the childrens .When i come in from work i find at times the house is not clean to my standards ,so i get out the hoover i bought and sort it out.As mentioned by others my marital problems stem from money...having paid £108,000 in mortgage payments over the last 15 years my wife had to recently step in and make these payments for 5 to 6 months while i was unemployed(previously she had been through the same experience for over 12 months) strangely at that time our relationship did not change.But since my bad luck it has,i married a woman i felt i was compatible with;modern appliances take away her "tired" excuse...selfish control is what's occuring here..if i wanted a "companion" i should have bought a dog ...

derek, kingston, surrey"

Should really have added "I don't entirely speak comprehensible English" in there somewhere!

1 comment:

Bianca Reagan said...

Oh dear. Thank goodness I'm not married to someone I'd have to "negotiate" with about sex. How awful that would be.