What's the problem with shagging every opportunity that comes along? Plenty.
Dr. Wendy Walsh: Free sex is here to stay. If you are a card-carrying member of the new millennium Girls Club, you are probably sexually active in an age where the double standard has all but disappeared. Unlike your grandmothers, you don't have to worry about getting a bad reputation, getting pregnant, or getting caught. You've got your own apartment now. And you've got the education and good sense to practice safer forms of sex. So, why not go for it every time? I mean, guys usually do.
For one big reason, ladies: No one has removed the emotional risks of sex.
First of all, know this -- in terms of a biological sex drive, men and women are wired very similarly. We all love sex. In this area we have much in common. Now, if you believe that most women must have an emotional connection before having sex, and that most men act on physical desire alone, then you're reciting cultural conventions, not biological realities. Your thinking has been programmed by a culture that is still dragging along some pre-sexual revolution remnants. The bottom line: You too can have great no-strings-attached sex. But SHOULD you? My simple answer is, not always. We are wired like men, but being liberated women isn't about acting just like men. It's about being something, well, something higher.
Now when I speak about being something higher than our cultural perception of a Don Juan, I'm not talking about being prudish, virtuous, or about being a "good girl." I'm talking about being a bad girl with boundaries. I'm talking about being a bad girl with feelings. I'm talking about learning to have great sex that not only produces an earth-shattering orgasm, but also verges on a spiritual experience. Let me explain more through these four questions.
1. Is more always better?
While I believe that a healthy dose of sexual experience is a great thing to cart into your next relationship, too much sex with too many partners doesn't make you any better at it, especially if your problem isn't sex, but intimacy. Intimacy is that strange and wonderful catch-word that describes emotional closeness, the ability to be honest, open, and vulnerable with another person. Too much unconscious sex only makes intimacy harder to achieve. Trust me. I've tried it. People used to tell me that I practiced sex like a man, and they were right. It was only when I learned to act like a gentleman that I began to get it right.
2. Is a man who is delicious on the outside always so delectable on the inside?
I know there is a resounding NO! being screamed at computer screens right now. We've all been there, girlfriends. Remember the major babe, Prince Charming who turned out to be a frog after we kissed him? Of course, the sexual experience may still have been great, but getting back to that thinking-feeling-conscious-woman thing, I ask you this: Was that yummy action between the sheets really worth the letdown that you felt when you found out the guy was actually married, a convict, a recluse, a gambler, a drug addict, a compulsive liar, a defendant in a paternity suit, a domestic abuser, or a serial killer? So, my advice? Don't have sex. Take some time with it first. Do your guerrilla research and determine if this guy really deserves your goddess-like sexual favors.
3. Is it possible to get so hung up on physical attraction that a girl could lose sight of what constitutes a good boyfriend?
It sure is. We all know women who put looks at the top of their list of important boyfriend traits. Maybe you're one of them. I certainly used to be. Okay, I admit, it's a personal battle I struggle with every day. But I'm getting better. Men's brains are becoming very sexy to me since surviving a string of hard bodies who were hard to live with. So, my advice when dealing with a major hunk of a date: Don't sleep with him! It'll cloud your judgment. Smart men learned this lesson a long time ago. Read: Men never forget the bikini model who got drunk and then got them arrested.
4. As women who are evolving spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually, do we have a responsibility to protect men from themselves?
Men are victims of this patriarchal culture too. Believe it or not, many men feel pressured to put out. They feel it's their duty to perform for every sexually liberated woman who will have them -- even if they don't really want to have sex. I know you may be groaning at that statement, but please believe me. Some men aren't even aware of the pressure they're under. Sure they recognize performance anxiety, but few really know when to say "No" to sex. It's your job to do it for them.
Your sexual confidence is an unfair advantage to men. Think of a much older man who seduces a naive 18-year-old girl. There is a power imbalance there. She thinks she wants to have sex, but is this a fair emotional match? Men are sometimes like that young woman when faced with a powerful, liberated sexual woman. Now think of any man who used the "L" word on you just to get you to have sex with him. Was that fair? So is it fair to use your sexually liberated self to get a man to give up the booty, when you know you might hurt his feelings later? Hell no. The first time a man accused me of playing him, I felt it was a badge of honor. I had attained full equity with the boys' club. Now I'm embarrassed that I ever thought those club rules were valuable.
So be responsible, girlfriend. Shag responsibly. Protect the hearts of the nice guys out there. Believe me, men fall hard when their heart breaks. When in doubt, look to your higher self. Welcome to the club of Bad Girls Who Think!
|Dr. Wendy Walsh holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and her area of interest is Attachment Theory, a psychological, evolutionary and ethological theory that provides a descriptive and explanatory framework for understanding interpersonal relationships between human beings. As a psychological assistant registered with the California Board of Psychology, Dr. Walsh has treated individuals, couples and families for a variety of mental health concerns including personality disorders, anger management, eating and substance disorders, and depression. Connect with Dr. Walsh on Facebook.|