EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Paul’s take on the notion that young women posses a right to demand their lovers make a reasonable effort to pleasure them.
THE CRITICS SING! “I challenge any honest and decent man or woman to read, ‘The Right of Young Women to be Pleasured’ without it causing their moral conscience to wail like an entire band of banshees.” — Merriweather Sterling, Blogs of the Day, “The Daily Burtie”, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, England, UK.
THE CRITICS RHAPSODIZE! “Sunstone published today, and Christ wept. It has become time to end Heaven’s and the World’s suffering. The guillotine must be returned to its proper use tout de suite.” — Aloyse Leblanc, Le Critique Passionné de Blog, “La Tribune Linville”, Linville, France.
(About a 5 minute read)
“I spent three years talking to girls ages 15 to 20 about their attitudes and experiences of sex and what I found was that, while young women may feel entitled to engage in sexual behavior, they don’t necessarily feel entitled to enjoy it.” — Peggy Orenstien
This morning, I recall something Majel said to me about her sex life twenty years ago when she was young, rather than just entering middle age as she is today. We were driving back from a restaurant at which the two of us had pretended to be man and wife in a futile attempt to amuse ourselves by scandalizing the waitress with the hopefully alarming 20 year gap in our ages.
The insufferable waitress had failed miserably to be right properly scandalized. Majel and I had been reduced to beggar’s rags by her indifference and forced to make due with the cast off crumbs of each other’s company and friendship that evening. Naturally, we drove home bitter.
Strangely bitter, though. Quite oddly bitter. So bitter it was beyond our human comprehension just how bitter we were. That’s to say we were so transcendentally bitter about the horrible waitress, that neither one of us even noticed how bitter we were that our toying with her had face flopped.
We drove home transcendentally bitter and engaged in a casual, easy conversation almost all the way. “I don’t get anything out of sex. It’s nothing to me.” Majel was so beyond normally bitter that evening, there was not even one hint of actual disappointment in her voice. Her voice was as flat, straight, and as objective as humanly possible.
I seemed more concerned about it than she did. Significantly more concerned. It actually panged me a bit. We talked about it some that evening, but in my naivete I could not figure out what the problem was. I felt like I was missing the point, and puzzled about the matter even after Majel dropped me off. But eventually, I put it aside as one of those myriad things I was never going to understand.
Twenty years ago, I was the occasional confident and unofficial confessor to dozens of young men and women. I could easily hear six stories a day at the coffee shop we all frequented. Today, I would offhand guess I knew well above a dozen young women’s truer attitudes towards sex. Had you asked me based on that paltry sample what the top concerns of young American women were, I would have been sure to have included these two on the list.
- Do I look sexy? I’m nervous, anxious about my face and body.
- What do I need to do to keep a boyfriend (please note: Not “get one”, “keep one”)?
Compare those two leading concerns with the BIG concern of the day’s politicians, preachers, and pundits: “Can I hold out until marriage?” Hah! I don’t recall hearing that one even just once. It was all over the news and views, but no one among my younger friends was doing anything about it except now and then publicly or privately scorning it.
And here’s another BIG concern that no one was talking about: “What do I want from sex, and what am I entitled to?” That was my BIG concern, but not even a lesser concern of the day’s politicians, preachers, and pundits. Sadly, it didn’t seem to be a lesser concern of young women either. Majel was the only young woman who ever so much as hinted to me that question might be on her mind now and then.
Listening to Peggy Orenstien’s TED talk again today, both reminds me of the women who were young 20 years ago, and the French saying, “The more things change, the less things change.”
In one of her timeless remarks, Orenstien put the core issue quite better than I ever did twenty years ago. She said girls and women have normalized the idea they have no right to be pleasured. That is, they are well beyond merely thinking they have no right, nor any just and fair expectation, of being pleasured. They actually believe it’s normal, it’s ok, it’s alright they don’t.
I’m no moral nor political philosopher. I cannot tell you if there are any firmer grounds for human rights than what seems fair to you and others, and can be backed up by whatever kind and amount of fist you have. But damn! If boys and young men can more or less assume they have a right to cum in both their real and imagined fuckfests, then why should girls and young women normalize the notion they haven’t even a whisper of a right to be pleasured?
Please take a moment if you will to think about this matter: Young women for at least twenty years — and more likely for an eternity before then — have faced a minimum of six or so absurd and difficult challenges when it comes to sex and their sexuality. Everything from society’s dictatorial standards for female beauty to even more serious and more stupid things such as their growing up as “The Sex that is Shamed Before and Above All Others”.
Please think about that for a moment, then heap on your thoughts this one more thing: “Do they — does anyone — need all that unnecessary crap dumped on them, and then be told (or think it themselves) they have no actual right to expect a fun fuck now and then?”
Oh! What a horrible, terrible burden it would impose on us all if girls and young women were recognized to have a fair and just right to be pleasured now and then. Think! Just think of the trauma it would inflict upon the rest of us!
I don’t care who is to blame for the true sin of sex committed here. To me, that’s not the real issue. That’s the smoke and not the fire. I’m just saying, it’s more than time this matter, at the absolute least, got some attention.
Of course, if anything is ever really to change, the changes have got to start with the girls and young women themselves. And I just checked, you young female readers (all three of you). There be no knights on white horses anywhere in the vicinity. Not a one.
Wish you the best with the dragon. Have a fun day! Watch out for orcs while you’re at it. And remember to brush your teeth. Shoo, now! Off with you! Never keep a good dragon waiting. It’s so very impolite, you know.
Girls and young women of the world, unite! Rise up against shame and indifference, etc. etc., and all that crap! You have nothing to lose but your current sex lives — if you want to call them “lives”!
And on that note of profoundly motivating encouragement, my work here is done.
Peggy Orenstien: “What Young Women Believe About Their Own Sexual Pleasure” TED Talk