Sex Tens of Millions of Exceptions
posted by March 13 at 16:08 PMon
When you make generalizations about three billion men on the one hand and three billion women on the other—when you write a book like this one or a column like this one—you gotta know there are gonna be tens of millions of exceptions out there.
So I knew what to expect after I wrote a column that accepts the central premise of Joan Sewell’s new book I’d Rather Eat Chocolate: Learning to Love My Low Libido. Sewell argues that women naturally have lower sex drives than men and that women need to embrace their low libidos and stop buying into the lie that a woman with a low libido—defined as “lower than her mates”—is somehow sexually dysfunctional. And straight men? They just need to deal.
So I knew when I wrote…
Back when women with low libidos were regarded as abnormal—way back at the beginning of the month—it was fashionable to blame the man in a woman’s life for her lack of desire. For years, whenever I printed a letter from a guy who wasn’t getting any, or wasn’t getting much, mail would pour in from women insisting that he had to be doing something wrong.
I called them the “if only” letters: If only she didn’t have to do all the housework, she would want to have sex. If only he would talk with her about her day, she would want to have sex. If only she weren’t so exhausted from taking care of the kids, she would want to have sex. If only he didn’t ask for sex, she would want to have sex. Well now, thanks to Sewell, straight guys everywhere know that it doesn’t matter how much housework you do, or how sincerely interested you are in her day, or how much of the child care you take on: She still won’t want to fuck you. So leave the dishes in the sink, grab a beer, and go play a video game, guys. Your “if only” nightmares are over.
…that I’d be on the receiving end of some angry emails….
I know I’ll be just one of many, and don’t think I didn’t miss your sarcasm, but I wanted to pipe up as one woman who has never—I mean never met a man whose libido could match mine. If it were up to me, I’d be having sex twice a day. I’ve never met a man who could handle sex once a day (every day) after the first flush of lust. Several months in, everyone’s slowing down. I spent a long time wondering what was wrong with me (or wrong with our relationships) before I accepted that I just have a very high libido….
You wrote in your column about differing sex drives: “Well, I should say that He designed straight men and straight women to be sexually incompatible. Lesbian couples, with their bags of Doritos, and gay couples, with our mutually insatiable sexual appetites, seem pretty intelligently designed.”
To you I say: Not! I am a 34-year-old lesbian. I want it CONSTANTLY. I would happily do daily. Hell, at this point twice, even once, a week would be nice. My girlfriend prefers the Doritos. In my previous life, when I was with men, I wanted it constantly too. So don’t spread vicious rumors that women who want it constantly are a hoax. We are out there. We are frustrated too.
Wants It All The Time
Women with high libidos don’t exist? The hell you say. Here I am. I’m a woman with a high libido. Once-a-day sex? Bring it on. Twice a day? Even better. My partners and I (I have three of them — two husbands and a wife) have widely varying libidos, but I can say that of the four of us, mine is the highest charged. Maybe I should get my testosterone levels checked?
Serene (in Oakland)
Thanks for writing, ladies. It’s my considered opinion—16 years into this sex advice business, and after reading literally hundreds of thousands of letters from straight men and women—that women on average have lower libidos than men. The existence of horny exceptions does not disprove the rule.
I will be swamped with letters like these over the next couple of weeks. Because not only is the existence of tens of millions of exceptions to Sewell’s rule a given, the odds that exceptions to this male/female generalization—women with sky-high libidos—are regular readers of my column as well are also sky high.