Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Which Way Is Up

Yikes, ya'll! It has been awhile since I have posted...but the last one is a quasi-rant that I am proud of. I haven't had time to wrangle and reply to my comments, so please bear with me. I am also busy working on other blogging projects...one will be viewable Thursday...and the other will be a little later.

The concept that I deserve to be happy is something that I am still trying to self-feed myself...and it's working. I think I have let a lot of things go that I have been holding on to. Not everything...but I'm trying.

I have SO much material for awesome posts, that I don't know where to start. So instead, I am going to shoot for some interactive comments while I am finishing up my two important blogging projects.


What does everyone think of the double standard...where men are being men if they sleep around or are overtly flirtatious, but women are sluts or whores if they act this way?

The kicker is that I want to know what shaped your opinion? Religion, family, pop culture...

29 Comments:

Blogger ~ good girl ~ said...

Hehe! I like the epiphany these 2 chicks got. Surely, they speak on my..err..our..dammit, my behalf.

Ok, I was planning just to laugh a lot and add a tiny comment. Now, I see you want me to think as well. Bugger. Will check back later.

Thanks for the chuckle!

GG

6:33 AM  
Blogger Bridget Laine said...

This drives me completely insane!

I once had an ex tell me that there are two types of women in the world: The party girls you play with and the ones you marry and bring home to mom. I was told that I fell into the latter catagory, and thus, he still had to have his "party" girls. (!!!)

THAT formed my opinion more than anything.

6:53 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I think double standards only matter if you care how you're seen. Crankiness shaped my opinion.

7:08 AM  
Blogger Jake said...

Double standards = hypocrites

Comparing ourselves to one another is a trap for despair in my opinion. One can never be happy with oneself if one is constantly comparing. When will it end? However, this is naturally our way as humans for some odd reason. Those who are obsessed with such things are likely suffering from a little identity crisis. Really- we all have an identity crisis I think. We eventually end up finding our identity in something... family, occupation, hobbies, etc. etc. but do we ever stop wondering? comparing? thinking "who am I?" and "why am I here?". I am young, but I don't think it will ever end.

Ok, I have rambled... need to get some coffee and rethink this one.

As for what shaped my opinion- Life.

7:27 AM  
Blogger brian said...

Well, personally, I don't sleep around and never did. I was shaped by lots of factors, one being that by middle school my mother was heavily involved with women's issues dealing with sexuality and me and my siblings worked at conferences. So I grew up to respect strong women while at the same time my father was abusing my sister.

Very mixed messages to say the least.

As for your question, America is such a puritanical society that the disconnect of the media when portraying and dealing with sex and relationships, has caused the churches and institutions to go in the extreme other direction.

The emergency contraception pill being denied to rape victims, but insurance covering erectile pills.

So, yes, I dislike the double standard intensely and feel that men and women are treated very differently when it comes to sex.

Do you think if men had periods, pads would be free?

Is this a hot button issue for me? Oh yeah!

Morning CG, how are you doing, have you started your new job yet? How's the family, your horse?

7:29 AM  
Blogger BarnGoddess said...

definately my Catholic upbringing formed my first opinion, which was a Catholic ONE....until I grew up and became an adult woman myself, then I realized how that was a totally narrow-minded, and totally WRONG view of gender roles.

7:58 AM  
Blogger Rude1 said...

I HATE that double standard and always have. I don't know why, but I've always been pretty liberal (gasp!) in this area. We're both human with needs and desires. Perhaps it comes from living in Europe for so long, but open acceptance off our sexuality should be celebrated not subdued.

Thats why I can't understand the allure of "72 virgins"; I say give me one "naughty" girl anyday!

Brian has it right; the puritanical basis of America has definately gone to the extreme.

Just my 3 cents!

BTW doll, get over the issue of happiness. You DO deserve it! Accept it, enjoy it, revel in it. :)

BTW, I really miss our chats, I can't wait to get back to normal out here! LOL

9:34 AM  
Blogger EsotericWombat said...

See, when I use the word "slut" I do with indifference to gender and very rarely in the pejorative. Some of my best friends are sluts

10:26 AM  
Blogger O Ceallaigh said...

Believe it or not, this is an active area of scientific research. A large area of scientific research. Because there are lots of models in other animals.

Consider the (wild) horse. The dominant stallion gets as many available mares into his herd as he can successfully defend. That way all the foals are his. Damned if he's going to invest time and effort guarding somebody else's brat. Only way a lower-ranking stallion's going to get any is if he can cut a mare or two out of the herd and start his own. Or "love 'em and leave 'em" and hope nobody notices so that the foal survives. And a lower-ranking mare might well welcome the opportunity.

So (and this is so woefully incomplete, but I do have to get some work done today) the wandering man is either a higher-ranking one who can afford multiples (cf. King Solomon), or a lower-ranking one who can afford nothing and is therefore broadcasting in the hopes of getting something somehow. A key difference is that the higher-ranking one will do all he can to ensure that, while he might be wandering, she is faithful. So that he doesn't have to pay extra. The lower-ranking one takes pot luck.

The woman is faced with the choice of investing her talents either on salary (stable relationship, marriage) or piecemeal (promiscuity, prostitution) in order to support the consequences - remember, all this evolved in a setting without the technological aids that dramatically cut down the time and energy that needed to be spent on domestic chores and child rearing.

But the woman who "chooses" the piecemeal approach denies her men exclusivity. He can not be sure he's paying for more than he's responsible for. So he pays as little as possible. In coin, and in respect. This, I think, is where the "slut" comes from.

I can understand the attraction of a wandering male to certain females in horses and monkeys. I have a harder time understanding it in human females, except by drawing exact parallels to the "lower-ranking mare" situation or other parallels that folk may deem crass. A female perspective is needed ...

10:28 AM  
Blogger brian said...

Why do we have sex anyway? It's dangerous in all sorts of ways.The pleasure is fleeting, and most of the time totally forgetable. If the goal is solely for procreation, then the many women one man makes sense. If however, the goal is for a strong family unit, then the arguement should be that young men and women should have as many partners as possible, before starting a family. This would ensure the best possible match.

BTW- you probably have all seen by now the news about a cervical cancer vaccine that works best when given to virgins. Guess what our puritanical government is doing? That's right, giving the vaccine to virgins would promote teen sex and therefore should not be approved.

11:00 AM  
Blogger O Ceallaigh said...

Why do we have sex anyway?

y'mean, besides the obvious reason? The question that gets asked behind ivy walls is, why are we always ready for sex? We're the only animal in which the females come in to heat at age 13 ± 2 and stay there for ± forty years, advertising that state with (for example) permanently enlarged breasts.

Why? Precisely because of that family. Because human children take longer to reach maturity than those of any other species. They have more to learn. Hell, the human child is so dumb, it even has to learn how to copulate.

Sex (so goes this way of thinking) is one of the tools to keep the parents bonded, a major reward for all those years of dirty diapers and temper tantrums and arguments over grades and prom dates and car wrecks.

Promiscuity in any form teaches its practitioner to disconnect sex from bonding. Making that partner a relatively unsafe choice for the long-term child-rearing commitment. Hence, in part, the disdain.

Might have to snark about this. Thanks for your patience, Cowgirl.

12:12 PM  
Anonymous pia said...

Nobody ever told me that women who like sex are sluts

But late August/early September will be the 20th anniversary of Jennifer Levin's slaying by Robert Chambers

They put her on trial. Said he was a nice boy. So nice, everytime he gets out on parole he ends back in

And the family that owns the bar that served them--owned the bar where a young woman was killed by a bouncer this winter

Women don't get killed by men from bars in NY every day--more like every 20 years now

4:53 PM  
Blogger Minka said...

Guys are heroes and stuts, girls are twinkeys! I hate that stereotype. I think one reason why it has evolved is biology. Man are by nature testesterone-driven, while woman are the nurturing love-the-one-you-are-with type. Chemicals in our bodies have insured that the Human race will reproduce taht way quite efficiently.
Now if a woman becomes testosterone driven she is "acting against her nature", while if a male loves polishing silver, change nappies and read the newest Opera Book is a wuzz!


trigger? Evolution and religion!

5:58 PM  
Blogger Jake said...

Promiscuity in any form teaches its practitioner to disconnect sex from bonding...

O'C- I think you're right. I think this also points to one overlooked aspect of sex. That being its certain spiritual side. I, of course, am swayed by my belief that we were indeed created by a Divine Being. I think the level of intimacy that two people experience with each other in the context of a loving relationship not only points to the need for child bearing, and committment, but also to the unquenchable desire for humans to be known. I don't think there is a greater single act of intimacy than sex, and that intimacy, given the right couple, can lead to even deeper intimacy in other aspects of that relationship. Love makes us humans stand out from the rest of the animal kingdom. The whole of living creatures on this planet all mirror one another, but we humans certainly are extraordinary in this regard. Of course, finding someone for each of us to have this sort of relationship with is nothing short of a miracle...

7:07 PM  
Anonymous shayna said...

I suppose I was a whore once... I never let the double standard stand in my way. Double standard is hogwash if you ask me. :)

8:05 PM  
Blogger Jenna Howard said...

Aurgh...double standards. They drive me nuts. We're either in one category or another. It's not something I understand. And you know who does the labelling? Other women. No one can massacre another woman like a female.

You don't even need to sleep around to get a reputation. Hell...you write about sex and fingers get pointed. *sighs tiredly* It exhausts me.

Bridget...who is he? I will beat him up!! Beat him down! You take on that bass player (still playing) and I will take on the ex. Is it who I think it is? Grr.

10:04 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Minka, there has to be some word for a guy who likes polishing silver and the latest opera book.

7:35 AM  
Blogger Jake said...

I'm a blog whore. Does that count?

9:00 AM  
Blogger brian said...

Jake: It depends on how many blogs you hit on every day. And besides, the word was "slut".

Doug: The word is house husband.

9:15 AM  
Blogger Kyahgirl said...

Interesting post Cowgirl and your commenters are in fine form!
I don't think women or men should sleep around. And I don't mean everyone should be in a committed relationship or married before they have sex, but just to be conscious of 'why'. Too many people have sex for the wrong reasons. For some its to feel wanted and loved, for some its power, for some its from loneliness and a drive for intimacy that is inherent to being human.

2:55 PM  
Anonymous cooper said...

lol,
If you've read anything I've written aka the " blow job queen " post you'd know how I feel.

The double standard has got to go.

It doesn't matter whether I choose to sleep around or not, but I should be able to do it and not be thought of any differently than the guy who does it.

I think the misconception of many is that women do not like sex they do it to get am man. To know that women like sex and a man may have to measure up I think scares men and it gives women a certain degree of power that men would prefer women don't have....hence call her a slut.

I find it hard to have sex with someone I don't have a relationship with and I also find it hard to fit a relationship into my life.........lol

6:54 PM  
Blogger O Ceallaigh said...

cooper -

I should be able to do it and not be thought of any differently than the guy who does it.

Agreed. Which would mean, to me, strongly discouraging both guy and gal.

Not for "moral" reasons, but because consequences, especially from disease, are expensive. Cultures that had little experience with disease have tended to be much less uptight about promiscuity than those which have much experience with it, cf. Pacific Island peoples (Tahiti for example) before and after exposure to those filthy Europeans ...

I am encouraged by the first phrase of your last line. And as for the second ... just wait ... :)

8:34 PM  
Blogger Jake said...

Brian- I stand corrected. That would mean I should be getting paid, and that is certainly not the case.

10:17 PM  
Blogger Bridget Laine said...

My! What an interesting expanse this thread has taken since my last reading of it. (Yes, you are right… the commentary group is in high form!)

O’Ceallaigh, I love your comparison of the wild horse. I’ve always found that the equus and the human species had an amazing amount in common when it came to society rituals. Observe a herd of wild horses and one would notice their hierarchy comes close to that of human society. (And, as you observed, in mating rituals as well.) Interesting stuff…

This “battle of the sexes” has been a fiery topic since the dawn of time and could be broken down into much more expansive topics. Male vs. female in the workplace… who gets more fair treatment? (It’s been proven that a well educated woman, in most cases, will earn far less than a man with considerably less schooling.)

My personal favorite contrast between the two is a debate a few co-workers and I got into awhile back. (For those of you who don’t know, I’m only a writer by hobby. The rest of the time I’m a fraud investigator for a major insurance company.) Why are men’s insurance rates higher, but women are (and this has been proven) worse drivers?

The science is simple. Women are much more manipulative, conniving creatures who possess the ability to use their wiles to get out of traffic tickets. (I, myself, have an ungodly amount on traffic stops with only one citation on my record. Excuse me while I find some wood to knock on…)

Taking that observation of the female species into account, I will segue into the topic at hand: sex. For women, it’s an emotional thing that they feel they can use to gain control.

Most little girls dream of their “prince charming”. In my experience (and I admit that I have been included in this category at times) each new mating partner for a woman gives her the hope that he is this “one” that storybooks and the greater media have led her to believe is out there.

When a woman breaks this mold, becomes sexually liberated, and refuses to go along with the standard that society has set, that is when she becomes associated as a “trollop” or “unmoral”.

By nature, men tend to be far more (and I hate using this term because there are always exceptions to the rule and I feel I might be in the company of a few of those exceptions) simple. To them, things are black and white with no shades of grey in between. You either sleep with her to fulfill a primal physical urging. Or you decide she has the qualities to fulfill whatever family plan you have been taught is the “right thing” when the man is at the “right frame” in his life. (I’ve heard it said that men don’t plan out their lives like women do and don’t buy it for a single moment.)

I have been called a slut on more than one occasion, but never by a man. It has always been fellow women that have coined this term to lash out at their insecurities on other females. The ironic part is, while I am a very sexually open woman, my partner count in extremely low. I’m a very relationship oriented woman, and there has to be other valid factors there in order for sex to even be considered. I am in total agreement with Jake that there is an emotional, spiritual side to intimacy which makes things better than any bar-fling could ever accomplish.

And no, Jenna. It was not THAT ex… it was the ex-husband. Ouch, huh?

Bridget

1:06 AM  
Blogger Bridget Laine said...

Oh, and in closing, to quote from one of my favorite movies (Tombstone):

I'm a woman. I like men. If that means I'm not a lady, then so be it.

1:50 AM  
Blogger brian said...

Good Friday morning,

BL- Yes, yes,yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes,yes. I am a man who is anything but simple.

OC- Diane aka FF, agrees with your viewpoint. She is a one man women.

JK-That doesn't mean you have to stop swinging from trees.:)

CO- Sex can be emotional for men also, and I think most men would prefer a relationship over physical gratification.

5:09 AM  
Blogger avereragebusinessman said...

You know it makes me happy that I am married and don't have to figure it all out again.

Thinking back on college and what the males and females would do and how men would be considered studs and women "sluts" I agree there is a double standard.

6:42 AM  
Blogger Miz BoheMia said...

Well, you have read my posts and I think the one I wrote on rape says it all plus, what woman in her right mind would not have a problem with it?

More than anything, just popping in to say hi! Where are you???

8:16 AM  
Blogger O Ceallaigh said...

brian -

one man women. Interesting. Does that mean FF has multiple personalities? Does that make you a polygamist?

I think most people would prefer a relationship to what Robert Heinlein once called "the slippery friction of mucous membranes". The level of promiscuity can be viewed as directly proportional to the level of despair over finding one.

2:20 PM  

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