Outside the Sex-Negative Box
Girls who lack desire are good girls?
Pretty much all of my students have witnessed slut-shaming in high school, and many have experienced it.
Or just listen to the radio and you’ll hear desiring girls insulted as “hoes.”
Because apparently, a girl with desire is a bad girl.
Some young women even defend their virtue after being raped by explaining that they felt no desire. Like Audrie and Daisy:
- Audrie: I have a reputation for a night I don’t even remember.
- Daisy: I was not interested in Matt romantically. I considered him my older brother’s friend. I trusted my older brother. I trusted Matt.
Daisy makes clear that she wasn’t sexually motivated. And Audrie seems to be saying she shouldn’t be blamed for sexual activity that she can’t even remember because she was passed out.
Meanwhile, study after study finds that nearly half of American women have low or no sexual desire. When you are constantly damping it down to be a good girl, desire can start slipping away all on its own. At least for women, whose sexuality is more sensitive to repression.
Women’s sexuality has been repressed for so long that low desire is now being called “normal.” Evolutionary psychologists even claim that modern women’s lower desire is an evolutionary good — instead of a devolutionary bad.
When you live in a culture that shames women’s sexuality it can be hard to imagine anything different.
And yet things can be different — and they have been, too.
Sex positive societies
American Indians along the Eastern Seaboard were strongly sex-positive before — and just after — Europeans arrived. Sex was believed to be a great blessing from the gods, not a sin. And for everyone, men and women, alike.
Polynesians felt the same way. In many of these island nations sexuality was relished with gusto, genitals of gods were worshipped, and the female orgasm was prized. There, women were easily — and easily multiply — orgasmic.
Pre-Christian Celts and Norse were sex-positive too.
Things could be a lot different than the punishing world girls and women find themselves in.
Posted on January 23, 2017, in sex and sexuality and tagged Audrie Pott, Daisy Coleman, Mae West, sex, sex-negative, Sex-positive societies, sexuality, slut shaming. Bookmark the permalink. 34 Comments.