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Is Sexual Objectification OK?

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SSSSH Is Sexual Objectification OK?

Sexual Objectification


Calico Rudasil is a feature columnist for Sssh.com, the web’s original erotic website for women by women. With over 16 years’ experience of writing about and for the adult entertainment industry under her belt, Calico qualifies as something of a Porn Dinosaur; similar to a tyrannosaurus, only with far more attractive arms and a less pronounced overbite.
Today, Calico brings her knowledge and experience in erotica here to the Sex.com Blog to ask one complicated question, “Is Sexual Objectification OK”

It’s a question I feel like I shouldn’t have to struggle with, given that I’m an advocate of sexually explicit expression (AKA “porn”), and if there’s one tried and true staple of that expressive form, it’s the objectification and fetishizing of people, body parts, physical traits, sex acts and so on.

On the other hand, like a lot of women, I’ve been on the other end of undesired objectification more than a few times, and fully understand the involuntary “Eeewww, ick!” reaction that courses through a person’s being when they realize that, for example, some slovenly, fidgeting creepazoid has been thoroughly fixated on the area surrounding the back pockets of your jeans since four subway stops ago.

The objectification question first struck me long before I cracked the cover of any feminist tome, well in advance to my first exposure to any porn more hardcore than select issues of National Geographic, but it didn’t really trouble me much until I became sexually active, and got a taste of what it’s like when a fetish goes a bit too far.

My first brush with the feeling came when I was out on what I wasn’t sure was a date, but sure hoped was a date. The guy I was out with, Josh, was someone I’d known for a while. We’d exchanged awkward small talk a few times before and after a humanities class we had together, and gradually developed a friendship of the sort that two total dorks slip into when they can’t bring themselves to confess an attraction for each other.

Finally, somehow, Josh had screwed up the courage to ask me if I wanted to see a movie with him, and so there we were, sitting there in the dim glow of some horrible action flick starring Fred Ward, or perhaps someone slightly more forgettable than Fred Ward.

Around an hour into the movie, I noticed that Josh’s eyes were fixed nowhere near the screen; they were trained squarely on my cleavage and clearly not in a wholesome way. I believe there might have been some simultaneous lip-biting going on, even. I didn’t want to make it obvious that I had noticed, but from time to time I’d look back over, just to see if Josh was still indulging in the dimly lit side-boob-view. Sure enough, there he was, transfixed like a stone gargoyle.

Honestly, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. On one level, I was excited by it. I liked Josh, and even if I wasn’t yet sure that I wanted hook up with him, having him show sexual interest in me was flattering, at least. Besides, I figured, I could be wrong; maybe I was reading too much into what was really just his eyes wandering during a terrible movie – the same thing my eyes were doing, after all.

That first date begat another, which led to more, and soon Josh and I were in a full-fledged relationship, one that involved plenty of sex. The only problem was, Josh’s breast fixation wasn’t simply a matter of letting his eyes linger too long that one time in the dark recesses of a movie theater. It began to manifest in our sex life in a way that made me feel very, very weird – and not the good kind of weird that comes from doing something a bit kinky but fun.

No, this was the bad weird; the weird that makes you think a week straight in the shower under hot water might not be quite enough to fully shake the man-funk off of you. I’m not going to get into too much detail about the turn things took, but let’s just leave it at this: even if a woman is OK with the idea of occasionally indulging her man’s tit-fucking fantasies, insisting that this be the way that you “finish” every freaking time is flat obnoxious – and the sort of thing that gets you dumped, sooner or later.

In theory, there’s nothing wrong with what Josh was (and probably still is) into; he just needs to find a woman who enjoys having her breasts lavished with the same sort of attention that he likes to dole out, and a lesson or two in moderation when it comes to having things his way in the sack might not be the worst thing, either. Who knows; if Josh’s “thing” had been more to my own liking, maybe being fetishized by him and having him obsess on another part of my body wouldn’t have fazed me in the slightest.

Maybe what it all boils down to is the need to know your partner and to honestly communicate your sexual desires and predilections to each other before they come as a surprise.

Of course, confessing to your girlfriend that you transform into The Mad Titfucker every time your penis gets erect could be more difficult than I imagine, so maybe the proactive communication approach isn’t for everyone, after all.

Thank you Calico Rudasil and everyone at Sssh.com!

 

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I have to wear my glasses when I go to the theater. If you want to reach me directly, email me at chicodustyblog@gmail.com, add me to your circles on Google+ or Tweet at me on Twitter.

Comments

  • InOutRepeat

    You didn’t drop in to tackle an easy issue, did you, Calico? Hope you come in for more guest columns because this is the kind of discussion that I think is amazingly healthy – and goes largely unaddressed.

    Creepy objectification aside, this is a troublesome issue for most of us guys. We want to be “enlightened” and not come across insensitive. On the other hand, we are visual creatures and I think most guys simply define women as art. In a good way. We also recognize that women can do most of the same things men can, and can do many things better, just as we know we can do some things better than a woman. Gender equality is a scale and each side contributes to its balance.

    Some men may go overboard and put women on a pedestal, which is perhaps just as troublesome a form of objectification as the creepy or abusive kind. Most of us guys live in a state of semi-enlightenment and would prefer to just not make a big deal over gender differences. Unfortunately, the feminist movement did not help foster the idea that differences are to be embraced and respected, and to just live and let live. Just as I’m sure men did not contribute positively to the discussion.

    On the matter of women as a form of art, I think most guys get that women don’t see things the same way, hence the rather one-sided nature of the porn industry where naked women rule the day, and a naked guy must just be there as the stunt cock or gay. But I also think we’d find it more flattering if shows like “Girl Code” wouldn’t proclaim the male junk as more or less grotesque. We’d like to feel our “attributes” are appealing, too.

    I know feminism has a softer side, just as I know there’s a warmer side to male enlightenment. Objectification, from a guy’s perspective, is often meant to be flattering rather than insulting.

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