On Women and Casual Sex – Part 1: The Pleasure Theory

One of the oldest and hoariest tropes in our culture is idea of sexual drives differing in men and women; men are – so the idea goes – hot blooded, almost bestial and totally at the mercy of their libidos. Dudes are so horny that they just can’t control themselves; arousal means that they must satiate it at almost any cost. They’ll stick it in just about anything that offers the right combination of friction, suction and heat – and they’re pretty flexible about their standards for all three. Deprive a man from sexual release for long enough and just about anything becomes fuckable – how else can you explain sailors mistaking manatees for mermaids?

“Stop objectifying me!”

Women on the other hand are less erotic and primal; they are slow to arouse, quicker to turn off if everything isn’t just so, and simply aren’t as interested in sex. Women may like sex but men need sex. One of the oldest jokes in the world1 is that women could rule the world if they got together en masse and decided to hold the Great Fuck-Out until they were given control.

Never is this more apparent when it comes to the idea of casual sex. Ask the average man on the street about who’s more into sex – or who’s more likely to go home with a relative stranger – and you’ll be told over and over again: men like sex more.

There are all sorts of reasons given for this apparent dichotomy. Some people will insist it’s because women know they have the power – (s)he who cares less has the most leverage, after all – and enjoy wielding over men. Others will hoist the old canard about alpha males and assholes.  Others will insist it’s all about status; women only sleep with the highest status males they can find. The wild and wonderful world of evolutionary psychology – which is usually thrown around by people who don’t understand it – will tell you it’s because of sex’s evolutionary purpose of procreation. Women, according to evo-psych, are guided by the unconscious need to ensure the survival of their genes. This, in practice means that they are driven to be especially picky about the potential fathers of their children, giving preference to men who are more likely to care for the child or be able to provide for it’s welfare and help ensure it’s future success at propagating it’s own genes. Men, on the other hand, are driven by the need to spread their seed far and wide; women can only give birth every nine months while men can potentially father children several times a day.

The actual reason, as it turns out, is slightly more complicated than that.

“So, You Wanna Go Back To My Place And Bang?”

One of the most common arguments held up that “proves” that women don’t like casual sex as much as men is an infamous study conducted 1989; the study had a male and female participant go up to random members of the opposite sex and ask “Would you like to go out tonight?”, “Would you like to go back to my apartment?”, and “Would you like to go to bed with me?” Men and women were equally likely – 50% – to go on a date, but when it came to sex, the results weren’t terribly surprising;upwards of 75% of men said yes to sex while absolutely 0 women agreed that yes, they would like to go to bed with a total stranger who propositioned them in the middle of the day on a college campus.

Every single man interviewed had the same thought: “This is exactly how pornos start!”

There were a couple other interesting aspects to this study that usually get ignored but the gist is: women are not as receptive to casual sex as men are. This study has been held up repeatedly as “proof” of the disparity between male and female sex drives, which is unfortunate, considering that it has a number of rather glaring flaws.

To whit: the study ignored a number of issues that might affect a woman’s willingness to have sex with a complete stranger with absolutely no previous interaction beyond “hello” and “hey, let’s fuck!” It focused entirely on heterosexual response, not controlling for the possibility that the respondents might be homosexual or bisexual. They did not control for whether or not the subject was single, married, asexual or practicing abstinence. And – by it’s own admission – did not even begin to scratch the surface of any number of sociological issues that might affect somebody’s response to an offer of anonymous sex by a stranger.

While it’s almost impossible to identify or control for every possible variable that might affect a person’s receptivity to sexual offers, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they can’t be measured.

Unfortunately, it took a while before someone tried.

Sperm Is Cheap, Eggs Are Expensive

Considering that 1989 was near the beginning of the AIDS crisis, it’s not entirely surprising that college students might be a little wary of anonymous sex; HIV was still in the early stages of being recognized as something other than just a “gay” disease. In fact, the researchers in the Clark/Hatfield study speculated that men and women might become even more conservative vis a vis casual sex in the years that followed. A follow-up study in 2009, utilizing similar methodology by Clark and Hatfield found similar results; once they controlled for people who were in relationships, 60% of men and 0 women were receptive to an offer of casual sex from an attractive stranger.

“How dare you ask a lady that… without buying her a drink first?”

So. Case closed, right?

Not so much.

In 2011, a paper published by Terri Conley examined the results of four concurrent sub-studies (the study doesn’t seem to be available online at the moment; you can read a very comprehensive summary here) regarding potential influences on a person’s receptivity to casual sex. She made several tweaks to the Clark-Hatfield study’s methodology; in her first study, she asked informed subjects to fill answer a questionnaire regarding being approached by an attractive stranger and rating their likelihood of responding on a 7 point scale. She also asked them to fill out other seven point scales about issues that would affect their potential acceptance or refusal including social status, potential STD infection, sexual satisfaction, likelihood of getting gifts, etc. Another variation of this randomized the gender of the theoretical propositioning person; men had as much of a chance of being asked whether they would consider going to bed with an attractive man as they would a woman.

A third variation asked for their perception of a man propositioning a woman, while a fourth asked bisexual women specifically about the likelihood of their being receptive to a woman approaching them as opposed to a man.

Another study asked about their receptiveness to specific individuals: in this case, Johnny Depp, Donald Trump, Brad Pitt, Carrot Top, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez and Roseanne Barr. Another specifically asked about the likelihood of being receptive to a proposition from their best friend of the opposite sex while yet a third was directed specifically at homosexual men and women.

The results were interesting to say the least.

It became clear early on that the Clark-Hatfield study’s methodology was flawed; it wasn’t a matter of whether women were less interested or receptive to sexual offers than men were, it was that they were less interested when those offers came from men. In fact, hetero-identified women were more likely to be willing to go to bed with another woman. Even gay men – propositioned by an attractive gay man – were less likely to accept.

When it came to the celebrities, the studies got interesting: men and women were equally likely to go to bed with the attractive celebrity and equally less likely to bed the unattractive one. Yet, when it came to opposite-sex friends, the gap re-established itself; men were more likely to go to bed with their female friend than women were with their male friend.

So what made for such a difference in the responses?

What Women Want (When They Want To Get Laid)

It came down to two issues: personal safety and potential sexual prowess in the proposer.

Contrary to the idea in evolutionary psychology that women will instinctively respond to outward signifiers of social superiority like money or status, women are far more motivated by the likelihood of sexual pleasure than any other factor.

The better the lay the man was perceived to be, the more receptive the women were to the possibility of a fling.

“My eyes are up here, miss.”

According to the results of the study, women consistently thought that men were potentially more dangerous and far less likely to be good in bed. Men and women (gay, bi and straight) on the other hand, consistently thought that women were likely to be at least a decent lay (at the median for the study), warmer and less dangerous.

In short: the  it came down to a question of potential risk vs. potential sexual pleasure. Social status and finances – signs of a potential good provider, according to evolutionary psychology – didn’t move the needle. It was the perception of whether a guy was a decent lay or not that made her more likely to sleep with him; in other words, was he worth the risk? The differences in women’s response to an attractive stranger versus an attractive celebrity had less to do with fame than with familiarity; when theoretically propositioned by both Brad Pitt and an equally attractive unknown man, women were more likely to pick Brad because they felt that they knew him well enough that it mitigated the potential risk.

So Why Aren’t Women Having More Casual Sex?

Actually… this is a somewhat misleading question. Women are far more open to casual sex and short-lived flings than we suspect; in fact, a fourth study by Conley found that approximately 40% of women who had been propositioned in real life (as opposed to the scenario played out in the Clark-Hatfield study) had accepted the proposal. Women weren’t refusing casual sex in the Clark-Hatfield study because they didn’t like sex or were instinctively searching for higher status men; they were refusing the offers because the scenario and the proposer were an ideal set-up for making the prospect of casual sex less attractive, even among people predisposed to casual sex with men.

Women are interested in seeking out sexual pleasure, just as men are. However, they’re trapped between opposing forces; while on the one hand they want to get laid, on the other, society and gender roles tend to shame women who take ownership of their sexuality. Our society still puts emphasis on the commodity model of sex: that men are the aggressors  - the purchasers – and women are the pursued – the vendors, and that sex has a “price”. If a woman gives away her goods too “cheaply”, it devalues her as a person. Because so many men measure themselves by their sexual conquests, the “easier” a woman is, the less glory there is to be had by sleeping with her; as a result, she is only as valuable as the sex she doesn’t have. When you add in other factors – the risk of pregnancy is borne entirely by the woman, it’s much easier for women to contract an STD from a man than vice versa, the risk of violence from men is far higher than the reverse – more often than not, the possibile sexual pleasure isn’t worth the potential fallout.

In other words: in a culture of slut-shaming, blaming rape victims for their own assault, increasing restrictions on contraception and abortion, a man has to be pretty impressive to make it worth a woman’s time for a fling.

Now if all this sounds daunting… well, it is. It will require a long-term societal solution – working to build a world of true equity, where women feel safer and more secure and aren’t demonized for their sexuality.

In the short term however… you need to learn how to be that impressive sort of person who is worth the risk.

Next week, we’ll talk about just why and when women say “yes” and how to be the sort of person they say “yes” to.

  1. Literally. The Lysistrata, performed in 411 BCE, is the story of how the women of Sparta and Greece forced an end to a war by refusing to sleep with their menfolk []

Comments

  1. Thank you for this!!! That is what it really comes down to- men are pretty much guaranteed an orgasm, women are not. At. All. If it was a sure thing for us too, it would be a whole different world. Going home with someone new gives you a chance of having that pleasure, but going home alone guarantees it. You dig?

    • "men are pretty much guaranteed an orgasm"

      This is false. In fact, in my (albeit somewhat limited) experience, a lot of girls don't really know what their doing down there. So no, an orgasm is not guaranteed. Contrary to what some ladies seem to think, it takes a lot more than just a few tugs and you're good.

      As for your last point, a lot of guys would probably agree with you. It's a good thing that sex is about way more than just whether or not you orgasm.

      • In recent studies (I linked to the article in another thread here), 98% of men reported that they *always* orgasm when having sex. I don't doubt that "a few tugs" isn't likely to do it if we talking hand jobs, but when it comes to PiV sex, I'm not sure how it could get much closer to "pretty much guaranteed" for the average guy.

        (Naturally there are outliers who have more trouble, but it's a lot fewer than with women.)

        • Er, but I'll add that I definitely don't think that an orgasm is all men are allowed to expect from a sexual encounter. Men have every right to seek out sexual partners who'll consider their pleasure in a variety of ways too, of course!

          • Right. I think that one of the problems in this discussion- is that most people are talking about P in V sex as Sex. All the sex. But that's hardly true, and that's a very detrimentally old fashioned way to look at sex, and that excludes all the complicated other factors of sexuality.
            (that is to say, continuous throughout the commentary for this article, not just this thread)

        • 1. Men have a higher tendency to confuse getting a nut off with an orgasm. They don't always happen simultaneously.
          2. Did the study claim that they reached orgasm during P in V or did they ask if they had some help (like masturbation) ?
          3. If you don't orgasm as a guy you're likely to be stereotyped as having some sort of dysfunction that people love to sell you drugs for. Society is more likely to claim there is something wrong with you, so that could be a factor.

  2. Thortok2000 says:

    I don't enjoy or want casual sex, or sex with strangers to be specific. However, having very few sexual partners and limited sexual experience feels like it pushes women away for the purposes of any type of relationship that includes sex.

    I've been working on the 'positive spin' recommended in a previous blog. I'm not an inexperienced loser, I'm an eager-to-learn configurable newbie. I don't have any bad habits to undo and the first woman to really spend some time helping me get some experience is going to reap the benefits of my learning to do it the way she likes. =P

    Still, I'd be down for a friends with benefits relationship (at least until I find a romantic one), but it hasn't happened yet. The few times I've had sex with women they've been unsatisfied, and frankly so have I. It's enough to make me not even want sex as much as the foreplay that leads up to it…and that just leaves women even more frustrated when I don't follow through.

    Which is frustrating as I have a pretty high drive. I could be one of those 'at least once a day' guys easily. The body wanting it but the heart and mind not wanting it is a painful disparity.

    I know what I really need is a woman who understands that I need practice, training, maybe even instruction, but waiting for that person to come along is pretty frustrating. The 'sex is supposed to just happen' attitude is very prevalent.

    • So instead of pretending you know it all, be upfront next time. (Not "Hi you're pretty let's fuck and by the way . . ." upfront, but somewhere between walking in your front door and actually doing the deed.) Needing experience isn't a bad thing – and it's an opportunity to learn what the woman wants out of sex instead of just assuming. It doesn't have to be any BFD, just "Hey, I guess I should tell you I haven't done this a lot. Not never, but not a lot. Please do tell me if there's something you like, or don't like, or whatever. I'm open to suggestions here." And then follow through with it – you can let the sex "just happen" while at the same time checking in as you go. "Do you like this? Should I do this faster? Slower? [etc]."

      • As a matter of course, I think you should always ask new partners "Is there anything in particular that drives you wild?" This is as true for veterans as it is for virgins. Women are usually turned on by the idea that a guy is there specifically to blow their minds.

        A large part of the problem is that the typical conception of femininity, which idolizes purity and virginity, makes it seem strange for women to be knowledgeable about their own bodies and be an active participant or guide in sex. She's just supposed to be overwhelmed and swept away to orgasm land by the sheer masculine force of her lover. This may be a compelling fantasy (even for women, if romance novels are any indication) but in real life, women tend to appreciate a more receptive lover, who's willing to put in a little extra effort to tailor his technique to her particular tastes. And, of course, once you get a feel for what she likes, then you can really take charge.

    • I think you're approaching it in a good way, and it may just take time to find the right woman. Unfortunately, the way both men and women are socialized strongly encourages that "sex is supposed to just happen" attitude you mentioned. There are definitely quite a few women who don't feel comfortable from the start with asking for what they want and directing a guy in bed, because they're worried they'll sound too aggressive or overtly sexual (in a negative way). And I've also seen that even women who start out willing to be assertive about what they want can end up becoming uncomfortable because of the reactions they get. Many guys get insecure if a woman suggests they should do things even a little differently in bed, and respond defensively or with hurt, which in turn makes the woman more hesitant to give tips in the future, even with other guys. I've experienced this myself.

      So I think the best thing you can do is just to be as easy-going as possible, and make it as clear as possible that you're happy to learn and you want to know what she likes and how you can make her feel even better in the moment. And make sure any time a woman does make a suggestion, you respond positively, even if you thought you were doing well and it stings a little. Any woman who isn't willing to open up about what she wants and how her body's feeling even in that situation is just not a good fit for you. But I do think you'll find someone who is if you keep looking!

    • Take heart! There are a lot of women out there that looooove foreplay, and many women require a LOT more foreplay than most men do before they'll be ready for the sex-type part of sex. So think of it as a plus that you're into foreplay, not a minus that you're uncertain about the sex part.

      • Seconded: being into foreplay is a PLUS! And I agree, you will come across as an attentive lover if you ask what she’s into, and ask for feedback along the way. It’s very easy to make that process part of the sexy fun.

    • welltemperedwriter says:

      I know what I really need is a woman who understands that I need practice, training, maybe even instruction, but waiting for that person to come along is pretty frustrating.

      I had a conversation about this topic with a (male) friend of mine who, in his younger/less experienced days, actively sought out older/more experienced women for this very reason. Maybe he was just lucky, but he claimed to have found more women than you'd suspect who were happy to be in the driver's seat, so to speak.

      (My own early experiences were with guys who were about as (in)experienced as I was, which can be frustrating, but if all parties involved have some goodwill and patience, is also a lot of fun. One of them was not terribly experienced but WAS well read, if you catch my drift. I wonder if the good Doctor would be willing to write up something on where one finds practical tips for sex? Start with Susie Bright and Nina Hartley and go on from there…)

      • Yes to older women! We know what we want in bed, are more comfortable with our desires(less likely to be coy), and we have let go of that bullshit "you should psychically divine what we need sexually" mentality. And if we are with a younger man who is upfront about his paucity of knowledge, really don't mind teaching or being more aggressive. In fact, it's kind of hot! ;)

        If I were single, this is something I wouldn't mind doing at all.

        • i a a woman really like it to fuck male virgins. i cant describe it very good because english isnt my native language, but often there was this sense of wonder, happiness and, well, like some person who got a really nice present. there is this light that glow in the eye, that happy face (well, some guys are more ashamed of tht virgin status-that should be bullshit, but emotions arent that rational. its problematic if the first sex was something to get over it fast just to “wash away that stench of virginhood”-do one time it was this awkward-i am no virgin anymore, kthxbye *runs away*

          but usually, doing virgins is something i like. teaching persons and- receiving this honest bliss <3

    • "I don't enjoy or want casual sex, or sex with strangers to be specific. However, having very few sexual partners and limited sexual experience feels like it pushes women away for the purposes of any type of relationship that includes sex. "

      Well, what women are you trying to get with? As someone who's highly monogamous myself, I find guys who want a close relationship with one woman far more attractive than guys who want NSA sex with lots of women. They read to me as more trustworthy, as having greater potential for emotional intimacy, etc.

      So I think that has the potential to be a positive spin. But if the women you're approaching are women who are looking for casual sex (which, remember the focus of the article above wasn't all women; it was those who were open to casual sex), your lack of experience are going to be a bigger turnoff than for women who are looking for a long-term relationship and therefore have a lot more factors on their checklist than whether you're safe and good in bed.

      As to this, however:

      "Still, I'd be down for a friends with benefits relationship (at least until I find a romantic one), but it hasn't happened yet. The few times I've had sex with women they've been unsatisfied, and frankly so have I. It's enough to make me not even want sex as much as the foreplay that leads up to it…and that just leaves women even more frustrated when I don't follow through. "

      While I think that, as with almost anything, practice is the best way to get better, there's a lot you can learn before attempting to put it into practice. I'd also ask why you're making such a distinction between "foreplay" and "not following through." Penetrative sex isn't the only thing that qualifies as sex, and it's not the only thing women find satisfying. (The vast majority of women don't reach orgasm through penetrative sex.) If you haven't already, read some female-pleasure oriented books (e.g. "She Comes First" — and its companion "He Comes Next"). Sex is best when both people are enthusiastically enjoying it, and you can through trial and error figure out what works best for you, but it's harder (the error part of that equation is a lot bigger) to figure out what works for others, especially if they're a different gender.

      Don't depend on others to teach you everything — "Hey I'm a total newbie and you can train me to your specifications!" isn't really that attractive of a proposition, I think, for most women. "Hey, I'm a newbie, but I really want to be good and I'm putting in a lot of effort to learn and need someone to practice with!" has more selling points.

    • Anonymoose47 says:

      Even after listening to sex-nerd Sandra's podcast, I'm still not convinced you should ever let them know you're a virgin or even inexperienced. It's the opposite of why women are picky about casual sex, there is too much risk that it can damage a situation that's otherwise going well. Pass off awkwardness as trying to figure out her body (because you are), do a lot of extra reading on the subject (because it can only help), watch some porn (for what not to do), then if it goes horribly wrong, right on, you know some things to not do for next time.

      Unless she indicates she's cool with it first.

      • Speaking as a woman: back when I was dating, the more experienced someone presented themselves as, the less likely I was to be interested. My theory was, "If this guy wasn't good enough for any of the women in his past, he's probably not good enough for me either."

        That's not to say my approach was the RIGHT one, only that there's a much bigger range of attitudes out there in reality than our culture suggests.

    • Fake it till you make it. Sex is like 90% enthusiasm, and 10% skill.

    • Camelopardalis says:

      Do you have any sexual ideas of your own that you would like to try? Just because you're inexperienced doesn't mean there aren't things that sound intriguing. Buy a book of sex tips and read through it and see if any sound good. Ideas that you get from porn or from men's mags are not likely to go over well.

      I can only speak to my own experiences, but I have been in ltrs with a couple of inexperienced guys, and jesus christ, they were lazy sobs who expected me to do the heavy lifting of coming up with ideas and keeping things exciting (not limited to sex, either). I know I shouldn't generalize to everyone, but I am turned off inexperienced guys forever by this. The thing is, it wasn't actually their inexperience that was the problem. It was the way they expected me to think of everything. You saying "needs direction or instruction" is triggering my "danger, Will Robinson!" alerts. So let go of that, and take responsibility for your own education.

      Before I actually had sex, I saw movies, read books, read sex manuals, etc, etc. I had a pretty good idea of what was supposed to happen, and I saw things I would really like to try. Hell, I still see things I'd like to try. So when I actually did have sex, I knew what to do in a large number of situations. It's not frickin' rocket science.

      One thing to keep in mind, is that sex with a new person can be a little awkward at first. So you can cover any awkwardness at being inexperienced with the awkwardness of being with a new person. Just go for something innocuous and hard to mess up at first (missionary or cowgirl), and then start asking "Hey, do you want to try pile driver?" and you get either a yes or a no, and that's how you have ideas and try stuff. (ok, pile driver might not be the best choice early on. but it's good to show off with at sex parties (also not good to suggest early on)).

      • Anonymoose47 says:

        Probably a good half a zillion things in my case. I disagree that porn is a bad thing from that perspective. Mechanics-wise, mostly ignore it. Fantasy, role-playing, creativity-wise, Gold Mine. Which can motivate the imagination to start thinking up some interesting things on its own, diamond mine. Even the simple stuff like finding the "spots" on a woman's body that would drive her wild seems fun. And it seems mostly obvious when they're actually enjoying themselves even if they're not saying too much.

        Thinking on it, it's not so much instruction or training that's needed (but I'd be completely fine playing that role too) as it is not blowing the load early and having a bit of leeway when it comes to something awkard mechanically going on.

        • Camelopardalis says:

          I don't know how easily you get re-aroused, but jerking off earlier in the day might help with not blowing your load too early.

          If you are a one-and-done kind of guy, and be honest with yourself, don't do this. Penetrative sex with a soggy dick SUCKS. Find your limits.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            Is re-arousal and limits relatively the same as jerking it?

            I have this embarrassing scenario in my mind where I've actually figured out the girls body during foreplay, have her engine reved right up, time to penetrate and go for the home run, and instead hit a weak bunt that dribbles over the foul line for strike 3.

          • Camelopardalis says:

            I don't actually know. I guess it would be fairly similar. What does "hit a weak bunt" mean? Lose your erection? Or come before penetrating? Jerking off earlier can help prevent the second, but won't do much for the first.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            Come quickly after penetration.

          • Camelopardalis says:

            OK. Yeah, go with a pre-jerk. Spend some time testing things out. The question is not "how soon can I get another erection after ejaculation?" but "how soon can I get a FIRM erection after ejaculation?" Since you are a nerd, I'm expecting plots of firmness vs. waiting time. Be sure to get enough samples to correct for any confounding factors. If you can identify the relevant variables affecting hardness, you may wish to repeat the experiments with a split on each variable.

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            At which point you grin, say “oops”, then remember that your fingers and tongue never go soft. Just because you came early doesn't mean that you're necessarily done for the night or that you can't still make things happen.

          • Remember that for many women, the best kind of sex for orgasms is not PiV, but oral or with a vibrator. So what you're thinking of as a home run may not be hers. That foreplay stuff? That might be what gets her off, no matter how…. uh, baseball metaphors not my forte, so I'm going to abandon those before it gets weird, but what your erection is doing doesn't necessarily have much to do with how much she enjoys it.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            I'll keep this and what Doc said in mind, should I ever land in the situation :)

  3. I actually had a fairly long discussion with a female friend last night about casual sex. She was definitely interested in it (with me, a nerd, nonetheless. :) ), but she had hangups about me being a virgin. Surprisingly, it wasn't because of some stigma of lack of experience or "omg you're a freak"… it was because in her experience, the first time draws a lot of emotional attachment. She's at a point in her life right now where she absolutely does not want a relationship or any sort of emotional attachment, she just wants sex.

    I always "knew" women wanted sex as much as men, but I never really "knew" if you know what I mean. Now it's quite clear.

    • Dr_NerdLove says:

      Ironically, it's usually the man who's afraid of deflowering a woman for fear that she will imprint on him like a baby gosling and follow him around forever.

      • Oh, I don't know. I'd say that fear is pretty evenly split, especially in nerd cultures, since nerd-boys have a tendency to get emotionally clingy and think of you as "The One". When you really are "The One" as in his first, that risk of a great guy turning into a clingy crazy person who can't keep things in perspective seems worse.

        I just don't think women talk about that very often.

        Mike, your best bet is an attitude of, "Well, losing my virginity going to happen at some point. It would be awesome if it were with you because you're cool. But I respect you, so if no, that's okay too."

        The more you can actively demonstrate with your actions that you're willing to back off and let go in a respectful manner, the FAR more likely a woman is of taking the risk.

        Guys who habitually back off and let go easily and respectfully are way low on the sliding scale of potential stalker.

        • BTW, that advice only goes if you are cool with losing your virginity without having that special emotional bond. A lot of guys really do want that. Just don't assume it will happen through sex. The potential for the bond has to be there first.

          • "Mike, your best bet is an attitude of, "Well, losing my virginity going to happen at some point. It would be awesome if it were with you because you're cool. But I respect you, so if no, that's okay too." "

            Yup. Agreed wholeheartedly. That was part of our discussion. I made it clear that if she wasn't into it, then I wasn't into it either. It has to be something that she wants to do and definitely, absolutely not some "pity" thing.

            She's actually someone I've asked out before, and got turned down. We remained friends, I'd say even better friends because of it. (Hey, embrace the friend zone, right?) I told her that I can't promise there wouldn't be emotional attachment because of it, I don't know that for sure and neither does she. But I did tell her I'm well aware of the situation and of what she does and does not want.

            As for being "okay" with losing my virginity without having that special bond? It's not something that I consider a big deal anymore. Would it be nice? Maybe. But I kind of see that as a fairly tale anymore. I know that sex won't create that bond, especially if all she wants is the sex.

            I definitely feel like I've got my head on straight in this situation. There's no guarantee that we'll ever move into the "Friends with Benefits" position, but it certainly seems to be on the table. It's been a very learning experience for me, and I'm thrilled with what's happened so far.

          • Good luck to you. At least it sounds like a gratifying relationship for you so far. That's awesome.

          • Good luck man, and kudos!

    • Which is when you offer to start with just fooling around and let her set the pace. Once she sees you're capable of hot fun sexytimes minus the actual PiV part, and not being a dick about it afterward, she'll find it easier to believe you can have PiV sex and not be a dick about it too.

  4. Thank you so much for writing this. When I started reading, my very first thought was, "Well of COURSE women aren't as receptive. Men can be dicks, if not downright dangerous, and there's no guarantee you're going to get anything out of it!" I have no idea why it takes science so long to come up with obvious answers like this. They could have just asked.

  5. Exactly. I have a very strong libido. I want sex every day, preferably a few times a day. I am currently single, and I make do with my good right hand and vibrator(s), because a hookup doesn't guarantee any satisfaction, could be dangerous, and may lower my social status by making me a "slut".

  6. So let me get this straight. A boatload of observational data, collected in the real world, pretty obviously suggests one conclusion. But you don't like that conclusion, so you dismiss the data. Instead, you rely on… questionnaires people filled out. Seriously?

    • The observational data proved that woman are much less likely to accept a proposal of sex with a total stranger than men are. DNL acknowledges that this is true. What he and the other researchers mentioned disagreed with is the conclusion that women are less likely to accept that proposal because they're less interested in sex. The first, observational study had no method in place to address *why* women would say no to those strangers, and the questionnaires filled in that blank.

      So where is the problem?

      • DNL's point seems to be "Of course women want casual sex just as much as men. They just want it under narrow set of idealized circumstances and parameters that never occur in the real word." And that sounds to me like the antithesis of "casual."

        • He's saying that it's not simply a matter of women being hardwired this way and It's Just The Way Things Are. There are powerful social forces at work, along with the fact that our orgasms don't come (ha) as easily as a man's.

        • The main parameters mentioned are that women want to know they'll enjoy the sex, and that they don't have to worry about their partner harming them. How are those parameters particularly "narrow" or unrealistic? If enjoyable, safe sex is the "antithesis of 'casual'", then does that mean you think casual sex should be unenjoyable and dangerous? Do you really think men would pursue casual sex with women just as much if they thought there was a relatively low change they'd get off and more than a minute risk that their partner might harm them?

          The usual definition of "casual" sex is sex without any emotional commitment. The point is that many women would be happy to have that–just not if they're not going to enjoy it, or they have to put themselves in harm's way. I'd love to go on trips several times a year, but I'd go bankrupt if I did that, so I don't. That doesn't mean I want to travel any less than someone who can afford to.

          • I'll answer you question with a question: What are MEN so seemingly unconcerned with whether or not the sex would be "enjoyable?"

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            Because they know that barring unusual circumstances – whiskey-dick, antidepressants, anxiety, a shockingly bad lay – they're going to get off. Women, on the other hand, only orgasm about 35% of the time with a first-time encounter with a partner. Read the article again. Read the study summary. Men assumed that women approaching them were at least going to be a middle-of-the-road lay, which apparently is good enough for jazz.

          • So why this assumption? Why do men apparently have a much more generous assessment of the potential partner's sexual fitness?

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            You seem to have elided over the part where i mentioned that it's a lot easier for guys to get off – especially in a casual sex encounter – than it is for women.

          • In other words, because of innate biological differences between the sexes.

          • The enjoyment factor–yes. No one's saying it's men's fault that women don't get off as easily. But it's natural for that factor to influence sexual behavior.

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            No, because what works for one woman doesn't work for ALL women and there's frequently a learning curve in trying to find what people like in sex.

            Normally I'd point out that you seem uniquely determined to ignore actual studies and stick with the imagined version you have in your head, but it seems like linking didn't take last time. So here, read this: http://paa2011.princeton.edu/papers/111166

          • Looking at the abstract, I don't see how the paper is germane. (Though alarm bells go off in my head when I see a scientific paper attempting to measure the effect of "love" on something.)

            I'm not arguing that the path to female orgasm isn't much more varied and unpredictable than for males. What I'm saying (and what I thought you agreed with) was that this was because of innate biological differences between the sexes.

          • Are you even reading what people are saying here? This isn't about assumptions, it's about facts. The vast majority of men can reach orgasm through having sex with a woman, *regardless* of what that woman is contributing to the experience. Simply having a body with a vagina is enough for that basic level of enjoyment.

            On the other hand, women are *not* guaranteed even that basic level of enjoyment (let alone more). Our bodies are built in a way that makes it much harder for us to reach orgasm. According to a recent study, "About 75 percent of all women never reach orgasm from intercourse alone — that is without the extra help of sex toys, hands or tongue. And 10 to 15 percent never climax under any circumstances." http://abcnews.go.com/Health/ReproductiveHealth/s

            From the same article, it notes that 98% of men *always* orgasm when they have sex.

            So for a woman, simply finding a guy with a penis is not enough to enjoy *any* enjoyment from sex whatsoever. A guy can assume that he'll almost always get at least some. So if a woman wants the *same* level of enjoyment a guy can expect from a casual sexual encounter, she has to be more picky.

          • Anonyleast says:

            I do maintain that a part of women being more difficult to please is the screwed up views our society has towards women enjoying (or even having) sex. For anyone to have an orgasm, they have to be relaxed and slut-shamers can make sure some women never relax doing something sexual.

          • Yep, I'm sure that does play a part too. It's just when you bring that up you tend to get some guys claiming slut shaming doesn't really happen that much and women shouldn't be so affected by what a "few" bad people say and so on, and it becomes a blame thing again. At least the physical side is pretty unarguable!

          • BTW, women don't generally like jazz. ;)

          • Juuuuuulia says:

            Also, men don't usually go "Hmm, I wonder what the odds are that this cute tiny chick will bash my head in and run if sex doesn't go her way."

          • Statistically-reasonable worst-case scenario for men: not particularly-satisfying sex and an STD.

            Other likely negative outcomes for men: not particularly-satisfying sex, or no sex as partner changes her mind.

            Most likely outcome: moderately satisfying sex and orgasm.

            Statisically-reasonable worst-case scenario for women: raped and murdered.

            Other likely negative outcomes for women: raped/coerced if she changes her mind, pregnancy, STDs.

            Most likely outcome for woman: (assuming she's moderately experienced) sex, but no orgasm.

            Men are less concerned with whether their partner is good in bed because their risks are comparatively minor. They're not even at high risk of not getting off.

            For a woman, however, a man has to appear to be pretty good to beat her vibrator in the "satisfying" department, and he *can't* beat going home alone for safety.

          • I usually categorize pregnancy as an STD, that you have for 18 years.

        • Uh, what makes you think those circumstances and parameters never occur in the real world? I've been propositioned by some lovely women. And I've been propositioned for threesomes by married couples who presented good reasons I should believe the guy was clean, trustworthy, and good in bed. I turned them down because I'm not into casual sex, but if I had been open to it, they would have been logical people to say yes to.

        • You mean a narrow set of idealized circumstances like it not being a likely road to social shame, pregnancy, STI's, rape, and stalking? I think men might like that too.

    • He's not contesting the observational data – just the reasons behind it. As I, and a couple of other women have noted above WE WANT SEX A LOT OMG. But we don't go for casual hookups because they're dangerous, we're likely not to find it especially pleasurable, physically, and we'll be labeled sluts. Not contesting the observed data (women are less likely to go for random hookups with total strangers), just offering a better explanation (pleasure, risk, stigma) based on better research and input from actual women, over the "traditional" explanation (women have less sex drive than men).

      Also, what's wrong with self-reporting as a research parameter? Especially when gathering data on why people do things? Until telepathy is added to our research toolkit, there's really noother way to suss out the"why" of human behaviour.

      • "Also, what's wrong with self-reporting as a research parameter? "

        Because people lie about sex. A lot. For all kinds of reasons. When it comes to sex, observing what people actually do if far more useful that asking them what they would do.

        • I have to agree and disagree with this.

          On one hand, there's no nerves involved when answering a questionairre. It's a no-pressure situation. There's no heat-of-the-moment or "creep factor" to sway you one way or the other.

          But on the other hand, I think I'd be more likely to answer honestly if a survey were anonymous, which I'm sure this was.

          • But that's my point. If the questionnaire gives you answers that would apply only in some ideal situation (without "nerves" or "creep factor") that will never actually occur in the real world, it's less than useless.

            " I think I'd be more likely to answer honestly if a survey were anonymous"

            People lie to themselves about sex more than anyone else.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            The question, then, is which produces more accurate answers:
            a survey in which people might lie about their motivations for behaving in a way that matches the observed data
            or
            just making up whatever motivation seems to make sense with the observed data.

          • I also don't see why people would bother to lie on an anonymous survey, unless it revealed something about themselves they don't want to admit, like the guy that doesn't want to admit he has homosexual feelings for Brad Pitt.

            I can't see in this study a self denial reason for a woman to lie about her feelings about why she doesn't want to have sex, AND those results seem to match up nicely with what actual women here, including me, are saying.

            A: Sex with a stranger could lead to scary physical risk

            Well, really that's the only one for me, because good sex is what you make it, unless a guy REALLY doesn't want to listen to you at all and wants to dictate everything OR he's completely passive which is frustrating. So, yeah, there's a consideration there.

            C: I'm not particularly interested in whether or not someone perceives me as a slut unless it then leads to emotional or physical violence against me.

          • People engage in self deception (especially about sex) all the time. Even when nobody's looking.

        • believe it or not – researchers know that. That’s why writing research questionnaires is something you have to learn how to do, and not something anyone on the street can do. It’s not as simo,e as asking a straightiforward question: you have several questions asking the same thing fromdifferent directions, questions tha don’t directly ask the question but provide the required information to a trained psuchologist/sociologist/anthropologist, and more.

          Also, and again, no one is contesting the observed data – we’re contesting the reasons behind it, which observed data simply cannot provide.

          Also, amusing historical fact: until about 300 years ago, the Western world considered women to have a higher libido, among other things because they obviously enjoyed sex MORE. And those historical folk I’m sure had plenty of lived experience to support their assertion.

    • Observations made under uncontrolled conditions are nothing to set a standard to, let alone draw a useful conclusion. No matter how many boats you fill with data. Flawed data is flawed. Even on boats.

      Questioning people's responses to sexual requests *is* science. It is called Qualitative Data. These are descriptive observations made under controlled conditions and, in this questionnaire, there were more variables accounted for than in the initial study which looked at only two variables (and only ONE question) in a subject as complex and fluid as sexuality within the perimeters of a culture.

      Questionnaires are not as useful in "proving" a conclusion as quantitative data from quantitative studies are BUT they are often the preliminary study that later quantitative studies are build on.

      From this questionnaire, we now know that we have been pretty ignorant about women and sex. Now we know we haven't been asking the right questions or conducting useful experiments to gather realistic data under realistic conditions.
      This is how science works. And, thankfully, branches of science are moving away from the heteronormative-male centric "Naked-Ape" myth and closer to a realistic understanding of human sexuality.
      "Women don't like sex" myth is the new "flat-earth".

      • "Questioning people's responses to sexual requests *is* science."

        No it's not. It's "social science," not real, empirical science. How would you go about falsifying the claims people are making in these surveys? You can't. Therefore, it's not science.

        • So because it isn't physics it doesn't count?

          • It doesn't count because it's making non-falsifiable claims.

          • I don't think you know what you're talking about. My point is this isn't physics where you can repeat an experiment in a vacuum and control for all the variables, social science is a challenge specifically because it is more or less impossible to control for ALL variables. Thus you rely on gathering large samples of data to analyze trends. You construct surveys in such a way that the questions are asked from different angles to correct for bias in the question, you control your human sample selection process to try and eliminate additional biases to the greatest extent possible. Just because it isn't a physics experiment doesn't mean it isn't meaningful measurable data.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Actually its not. The answers of any one person are non-falsifiable. The study isn't about why Mary won't go home with a stranger. Its about an aggregate statistical sampling. So given the specific data, one could build a probabilistic model of the odds of the behavior of someone in a similar situation. With the probabilistic predictions and a sufficiently large sample size, you could then run multiple tests of specific sets of conditions in the field (stranger proposition, friend proposition, Brad Pitt proposition etc). The data is now falsifiable as any significant variation would demonstrate that real world conditions differ from those reported. If you'd like, I'll be happy to look up Bard Pitt's agent for you so that you can get started on this study.

          • That would be an interesting experiment to run. But it's not what happened. What happened was that people filled out self-reporting surveys.

          • And all the women consistently lied in the anonymous surveys, saying "yes, even though we are heterosexual, we would like to go to bed with one of our friends who is a lady." Because American culture is so much more accepting of homosexuality than heterosexuality.

            Even granting the motivation to lie on an anonymous survey (and I will grant that motivation, but won't comment on its extent), I don't see the logic in the responses. They want to sleep with Brad Pitt because it will increase their social status, whereas sleeping with normal dudes makes them a slut. And sleeping with women doesn't carry social consequences?

            Granted, I do see significant flaws in DNL's takeaway: even though I think he may be correct, he posits motivations without any supporting statistical or survey evidence, just anecdotal evidence. He posits a theory to explain the evidence that fits. You, however, adjust your evidence to fit the theory. They systematically lied in self-report surveys, so the evidence that challenges your theory must be flawed, but all the evidence that supports it is golden. Right.

            Basically, you have to allow for inaccuracies in self-report surveys, especially systematic ones. But you say "I know there is a systematic error, this, because this evidence gathering method is both flawed and unsupportive of my theory." You can't just reject evidence without examining it, and without fitting tracking collars there isn't a better way to get this data, even to support your theory.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            So what? You said it was non-falsifiable when it clearly is. Testing whether or not it is false is your problem. You made the claim, you get the evidence.

        • You know you aren't talking to a scientist of any measure when they say "social science is not real".

          • Also when they make contradictory arguments and try to assert that one factor being true means a completely unrelated factor is true without support.

          • It's not real science. It virtually never presents empirically falsifiable conclusions. That's the very definition of "not science." It's the creationism of the modern academy.

          • This coming from a guy who, when asked multiple times for scientific evidence or proof of his unsubstantiated claims, offered an actor's Wikipedia page and nothing else. Have you considered practicing what you preach?

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            There are plenty of competent biologists who believe that evolutionary psychology is, shall we say, deeply flawed, and I'm not talking about creationists.

          • You also know you're talking to a college student, or someone who never mentally matured past that point.

        • That's how it works with human beings. We live in a society, we have culture, these are factors that cannot be ignored by any real science. I'm sorry you can't understand this.
          How is your "cavewomen brain" theory more scientific than this? Where did you learn your science? Can you show us some actual studies to support your theories? Just yelling SCIENCE very loudly does not make you right.

  7. "In the short term however… you need to learn how to be that impressive sort of person who is worth the risk."

    That's trying to hit an invisible moving target. Much, much easier approach: show her that you recognize the potential risk exists, and behave in ways that minimize it. That way no matter where she finds you on the impressiveness scale, it will be more likely for [impressiveness] > [risk].

    In practical terms, that means be aware of your situation and your surroundings: don't proposition her while she's feeling vulnerable (physically backed into a corner, stuck in the car with you for a long drive, emotionally a wreck, etc.), don't act like a creeper, don't make rape jokes, don't brag about all the chicks you've banged (which implies she'd be just another number – an unattractive prospect even to someone who DOES want NSA sex) or complain about girls who never put out. Do try to put some effort into the foreplay, before even broaching the subject of PiV sex – it's not a stalling tactic; it's all part of the experience and increases the chance (from her perspective) that you'll be a good lay and attentive to her needs instead of wham bam thank you ma'am I jizzed so I'm done with you now.

    • Yes this! You'll get a lot further by demonstrating that you're less of a risk of the bad stuff. Dead on, Wendy.

      • Cutting A Rug says:

        Wendy, Jess, et al.:
        While I consider myself socially adept I find the idea of propositioning a complete stranger with casual sex mind blowing to say the least. I simply cannot grasp how it would ever work. What does that conversation even look like? I do not ask because I am trying to get into the panties of the next beautiful woman I meet, but I am asking because the concept is so absolutely alien to me that I cannot even imagine how to go about asking.

        • Honestly, I don't know either. I know it happened a lot in college, but now that I'm no longer in that "random party, rooms are right upstairs" environment, I can't see it happening. I suppose it would have to be part of the greater pick-up culture of a place that you wen to like a bar or a kink club.

        • Dr_NerdLove says:

          Coincidentally, i'll be talking about that on Monday.

        • I'm pretty sure that when it happens, it's very rarely propositioning a *complete* stranger–it's propositioning someone you've spent the last couple hours chatting with, flirting with, possibly dancing with, etc. at a party/bar/club/wherever, so you know each other a little now. If all that's been going well, then maybe you can say, "Hey, want to come back to my place?" and the other person may say, "Sure!"

          I find it hard to imagine there many if any woman who under any circumstances would say "Sure!" to the same suggestion if it's the first words out of a guy's mouth after "Hi", as the first study mentioned in the article bears out.

          • I think this is hair-splitting. A person you spent a couple of hours with is still a complete stranger by any reasonable defintion.

          • Well, I wasn't sure whether Cutting A Rug was thinking of the example used in the article (where men were approaching women and the first thing out of their mouths was the proposition) or simply someone you'd only just met that day. I'd say there's a pretty big difference in comfort levels between a total stranger you've never even spoken to and a person you've been chatting with for a few hours.

            I don't know exactly how people make the transition between just chatting and propositioning, because it's not something I've ever gone looking for or had happen to me either. I think it's most likely to happen in certain settings where it's understood a significant number of people are looking to hook up (bars, clubs), and the people involved probably have felt each other out before making the invitation explicit–e.g., through increasingly close physical contact that's gotten a positive response, increasingly sexualized jokes and/or comments, and so on.

          • I think your right but it has to be more than the right setting, it also has to be with the right people. The people who get into random hookups tend to be good looking or have a lot of charisma, animal magmatism, sex appeal, or whatever they want to call it. The people also need to be risk takers.

          • Well, yes, you're probably not going to get a positive response to getting physically close to the other person and making sexualized remarks unless you're also fairly charismatic and appealing. But then, people who are charismatic and appealing tend to have an easier time finding dates and long term relationships too–it's not something specific to casual sex.

        • Same here. I heard of random hookups, propositioning strangers in bars or even first dates ending in sex but never had something like that happen to me. Even on my best dates, the most I've gotten in terms of physical affection where a hug and the woman allowing me to kiss her on the cheek. Than when I call and ask her if she would like to go on a second date doing, suggested activity here, the answer is always a polite no.

    • Also, don't lead with sex. Women tend to warm up to sex after you have an actual conversation with them and make them feel at ease. That can make the difference for her between really awkward bad sex and something pretty enjoyable, hence increase the likelyhood she would be open to casual sex. Establish familiarity. There's a trick you can use to do that. It actually works not just with the casual sex scenario, but with trying to date or make a new friend:

      Close friends have inside jokes. An inside joke you share signals that you're part of the same in-group, and creates familiarity. You can create this affect by turning something in your surrounding into an inside joke that only you and the other person you're talking to share.

      For example, I was talking to a guy at a local dive bar. We were actually talking about favorite features on people, and I mentioned that I love gingers (people with red hair, also sorry DNL didn't mean to objectify your people). He looks around and remarks that there are quite a few gingers in house that evening, and proceeds to count them. Then we have a discussion about one girl who comes in that has that purple-red hair color that doesn't occur in nature, and whether she counts as a ginger or not. It turns into this in-joke, where even when the conversation has moved on, every once in a while we would see a new ginger/ginger potential and remark and giggle about it.

      It doesn't sound that funny, but in the moment it worked, he created and inside joke that just me and him shared, and it made us in-group, while the rest of the bar was the out-group, and instantly bonded us.

    • "That's trying to hit an invisible moving target."

      Anything worth doing in life involves that kind of trying some of the time…

  8. YES THANK YOU SO MUCH.

    My "number" is consistently higher than the vast majority of men I know. I have a pretty healthy sex drive, I think – maybe not always one a day, but I'm reliably horny every other day or every few days (depending on what else is going on). And given that I'm a physically attractive Asian nerdgirl, I could probably make my "number" go up a lot faster than it is. But right now I'm content with having sex only every few months. Why? Because these partners I find every few months are people I've developed friendships with and gotten to know. It's a matter of establishing a bare minimum of trust that we're clean, we won't hurt each other, and we're all mature enough to deal with any potential problems that may arise. Personal safety and satisfaction > getting laid for the sake of getting laid. (I won't lie, that was a pretty significant phase a couple of years back.)

    In a perfect world, where I'd be guaranteed all that with no worries, believe me, I'd be happy to fuck anyone attractive and interested.

  9. Adding some more anecdata to the personal one above – when my circle of girlfriends discuss this subject, we all agree that at least for a few days each month (usually halfway through our individual cycles) we would gladly fuck ALL THE MEN. Seriously. We walk around literally panting for it. But very few of us will do anything about it unless in a LTR or o fuckbuddy felationship – again, for the previously mentioned reasons.

    • Sumiko Saulson says:

      lol! Yes I wondered why the article didn't mention ovulation – which is a major component of horny-or-not for women of childbearing age and part of the reason why 27 to 36 year old women are considered "hot to trot" – your body trying to get pregnant whether you want it to or not.

  10. Lemminkainen says:

    I'm rather surprised the whole "women don't enjoy sex as much" myth has been as persistent as it is. I've found that in my longer-term sexual relationships, my partners tend to be at least as voracious as I, usually tending to be the first to start undressing me when I drop by to visit, even when they initially aren't planning to because they have work to do or something of that sort.

    And as for the pleasure issue– has anybody who claims that women enjoy sex less ever actually seen a woman have an orgasm? When my partner comes through penetrative sex with me, she gasps and moans and her body goes through this intense set of contractions. When it happens when I go down on her, she loses all of her fine motor control and begins to shake all over and won't stop tingling for five or ten minutes. I've had some orgasms that were intensely pleasurable, but none that ever had an effect that dramatic on me.

    And it isn't like I'm some sort of sex god or something. I'm a skinny, geeky college student, who only had sex for the first time a year and a half ago, and didn't start having sex regularly until last summer. And my partners, for the most part, haven't been terribly experienced either. I'm sure that people with more experience could elicit much better results than I have– my only real assets are a fondness for communication, an eagerness to please, a willingness to try anything, and the ability to recover erections fast.

    • welltemperedwriter says:

      my only real assets are a fondness for communication, an eagerness to please, a willingness to try anything, and the ability to recover erections fast.

      Those first three are GOLD. Seriously. Especially communication. The last one, alas, will fade with time (though keeping up your general physical health makes a difference–I know grandfathers who are having WAY more fun than anyone would suspect) but experience and those first three factors, you'll find, really do count a lot more.

      The older I get (and I'm verging on middle age), the less patience I have for a partner who is unwilling to communicate or just settles into doing the same-old same-old in bed. Based on an anecdotal poll among my girlfriends, women's sex drive tends to go UP as we age, not down, too.

    • DUDE!!!!! That is all you need!

    • You are AWESOME! Hey, I married a guy a lot like you, skinny and geeky with all the qualities you mentioned. You'll do just fine, man! ;)

      I too share your surprise about that myth lasting this long. In my relationship, I'm the dirty-minded, horny bastard who often has to drop trou to make my husband drop his scale models and come to bed. Hints don't work! Anecdotally, I've heard from a looooooot of ladies in LTRs who say that THEY are the ones always wanting it, while their men are content with less.

      I think that it's more a personality thing than a gender thing. Men are not encouraged to want it less, so the ones who do don't really admit it, and sometimes go through w it when they'd rather watch tv. And women aren't encouraged to want it more (though attitudes are getting more relaxed), so they resort to hinting and frustration.

      • I think you have to differentiate, though, between "GOOD sex" and "everyday sex." A lot of women are in relationships with guys who don't see the problem with the guy getting off every time and the woman only getting off sometimes (if ever). I mean, it can still be relationship-affirming to make your partner come their brains out, but at the end of the day it's just not the same thing as an orgasm. I suspect if "sex" were defined as "having an orgasm" instead of just "getting someone's dick stuck in you," lots more women would be just as fond of sex as men supposedly are.

        • Lemminkainen says:

          I guess that I was expecting an explanation sort of like this, although it rather saddens me that it's true.

          It's socially awful that so many guys think that it's okay to have so little regard for their partner's pleasure in sex, and that so many women are willing to put up with it. If I had a partner who came every time before I did, never came back for a second round, and never went down on me, I take her (or him– I'm bi) to task for it, and then, if that failed to alter the situation, DTMFA.

          There really is no excuse for consistently failing to get off a partner capable of having orgasms through penetrative sex, oral sex, or manual stimulation. (A temporary failure because of stress or overwork or exhaustion or illness is understandable). And I wouldn't want to stay with a partner who didn't care for me enough to give me what I need in bed.

        • True that. The fact that I have a 99.99% orgasm success rate helps me be the horny bastard I am. ;) It doesn't take me that long to orgasm, either, because one of the perks of being with someone a long time is they really get to know what gets you off, and how! I swear, sex gets hotter every year, not more boring!

          It wasn't always this way. I barely came at all in my early 20s. But because I have a gentle, attentive husband who is very focused on my pleasure, now the rate is almost 100% (only rarely can't I, like if I've been drinking too much or getting over a cold, etc).

          And don't worry, dudes, I give the same TLC right back to him. ;)

  11. Excellent article, Doc, and just as an added counter point…. guys, it's all right if you're not interested in casual sex! The idea that guys MUST like sex and must thus take it whenever offered or reduce your "manliness," or that sexual experience for men is silver currency in the dating world, is just as damaging as the idea that women DON'T like casual sex.

    While you are learning that women are individual tastes (some like casual sex! some like nerds!), don't forget to extend that idea to yourself as well. It's all right to be a virgin, it's all right to not have "enough" experience.

    If you're going to engage in casual sex, do it because you enjoy it, not because there is some cultural pressure telling you you should enjoy it. If you like it, great! If you don't, great! If a woman likes it, great! If a woman doesn't, great!

  12. FormerlyShyGuy says:

    I don't believe that women what sex less than men but IMHO it is understandable at least to those in another myth/cliche about sex. , The sexless marriage, In my personal case I understand that this was a symptom of the problems that ended the marriage. Not proof that all women everywhere want sex less than men, but at the time it certainly fed the myth in my mind.

  13. This article is a great explanation of one of the (many) reasons feminism benefits men as well as women — increased access to contraception and STD treatments for women, less tolerance as a society for rape, greater tolerance as a society for women owning and being proud of their sexuality (no slut-shaming), etc. all make it easer for straight men to get casual sex.

    • It's been an enormous boon to men willing and able to play the field, to be sure. Virtually limitless access to commitment free sex with a huge number of women ? Yes please. For betas, not so much.

      • You're the one defining yourself, Vic, then forcing the world to justify it. Dr. Nerdlove has a couple of great articles here that can help you with that. Check out self-limiting beliefs.

        Frankly, I'm tired of your pity party, so I'm done.

        There you go, it must be because you're not an alpha male.

        • Who said I was placing myself in the latter group, rather than the former? No self pity here.

          • Dude, alpha males don't bother going on dating sites for geeks and whining about how social science isn't real science. That's something wannabe alpha males do. Fortunately, the denizens of this site aren't impressed by the whole BS alpha/beta paradigm, so we don't fault you for not living up to it.

      • I know you're trolling, but I'll answer this anyway because it bears repeating.

        It's been an enormous boon to all men. Greater family leave for men as well as women because of women's demands in the workplace, and most fathers, it turns out, do actually want to spend time with their kids without being penalized for it. It's been a boon to men who want healthy relationships — that is, relationships between equals. It's been a boon for men who want better sex in general (men in relationships with women who identify as feminists report higher levels of sexual satisfaction).

        And feminism continues to chip away at the patriarchal definition of what men are allowed to be, which is as narrow, paradoxical and unachievable as its definition of what women are allowed to be. Living in a society where it's okay to be yourself is a boon for everyone, male and female.

  14. "When the Clare-Hatfield scenario is applied,everyone is less receptive to an offer of casual sex,"

    True, but women were not receptive AT ALL, a staggeringly huge difference between sexes.

    "The proposed scenario of the Clark-Hatfield study is not one that happens in real life; "

    Oh, but it did. At least as far as the subjects were concerned. And the simple fact is, though this kind of boorish approach to casual sex is very rare, men pounce on it, while women run for the hills.

    Conley's studies, well-designed as they might be, are still ultimately just people saying what they would or would not do and why. They are not empirical observations of their actual behavior. And when empirical observation clashes so wildly with what amount to surveys people take, I'm going to believe my lying eyes. One of the most useful insights I've gained regarding sex is to stop listening to what people say, and start observing what they do.

    "When the data is consistent and replicable the way that Conley's was, it's a pretty good indication that yes, she's on to something"

    Was replicated with empirical, observational behavioral data? Or was it replicated in the sense that someone else sent out a similar surveys and got similar responses?

    Look, if I ask people who they would save first if their house was on fire, most people are going to tell me their spouse, kids, pets, etc. I'm sure they'll give all sorts of compelling reasons for this. But say I then go ride along with the fire department, and see one fire after another where everybody adopts an every-man-for-themselves mentality and gets themselves out ASAP, other be damned. What am I to believe about human nature?

    • Okay, but you agree that the scenario in the Clare-Hatfield study is a "very rare" and a "boorish" approach to casual sex. Which means that how women responded to it tells us very little about how they would respond to more normal, non-boorish approaches to casual sex, no?

      "Conley's studies, well-designed as they might be, are still ultimately just people saying what they would or would not do and why."

      Except for the part where participants were reporting on *what they already have done*. Do you really think the 40% of women who reported that they had accepted propositions of casual sex in the past were lying and really hadn't? Why would they lie about that?

      It seems to me that the two studies provide pretty good proof that women aren't receptive to strange men coming up to them and propositioning them out of the blue, but many are receptive to propositions in more realistic circumstances.

      Anyway, if you believe no women are open to casual sex, then who exactly do you think the successful PUA guys are sleeping with?

      • I think the differences between the sexes in how they responded to the experiment are too staggeringly huge to ignore, even in more "realistic" situations. In a "real world" casual sex proposition, I'd expect more than ZERO women to agree, but still nothing like the proportion of men who would.

        ". Do you really think the 40% of women who reported that they had accepted propositions of casual sex in the past were lying and really hadn't? "

        Experience tells me that men an women differ GREATLY in terms of what they consider to be "casual."

        But this does bring up an interesting point. I doubt anywhere close to 40% of men would answer affirmatively to this, simply because not that many men have ever been approached for casual sex by a woman, let alone said yes.

        "Anyway, if you believe no women are open to casual sex, then who exactly do you think the successful PUA guys are sleeping with?"

        I never said no women are open to casual sex. I'm saying it's much more difficult to get them to agree to it than it is for men, mostly because of innate sexual differences.

        • "…because not that many men have ever been approached for casual sex by a woman…"

          Can you support that statement with anything that even looks like valuable data? Because if you're just going off of your own anecdotal experiences 1) that doesn't mean much and 2) it means even less to me since my own experiences run to the contrary.

          • People are using their anecdotal experiences to argue against me. Can't I play, too?

          • Their anecdotal experience supports the findings of the surveys that were mentioned in the post. You are bringing counter-anecdotes, but not counter-data.

          • Anecdotal evidence has its place.

            1. Anecdotal evidence is sufficient to verify that an event occurs, but not sufficient to quantify it or to verify a theory regarding it. If you have enough anecdotes to properly analyse in a statistical fashion, you don't have anecdotes, you have data.

            2. Counter-anecdotes are sufficient to disqualify an absolutist theory, but *only* an absolutist theory.

            For example,
            Person A: "Event c never occurs."
            Person B: "I have seen event c occur."
            Person A's theory is disqualified, since it is supposed to be always true and person B provided a counterexample.

            2a. Counter-anecdotes are insufficient to qualify a probabilistic theory.

            For example:
            Person A: "Event c occurs only very rarely."
            Person B: "I have seen event c occur."

            Person B hasn't really contested person A's claim. If person B had seen c happen many times and had never witnessed c not happen, he could turn this into data to challenge A's theory.

            3. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Specifically, you and most of your friends have never been approached by women. If you picked friends at random and knew the details of their sex lives, you could support the claim "not that many men have ever been approached for casual sex by a woman," but only for varying values of "not that many." There are roughly 7 billion people here, so if I wanted to be a hardass I could.

            However, the big problem with anecdotal evidence are the various cognitive distortions which it is affected by. In this case, a selection bias. We tend to be friends with people near us, and to bring up sensitive subjects with people who we think will agree with us. Your evidence is lacking in this regard.

            Were you to say "I think men are approached for casual sex much less frequently than women are," you would probably find very few people to disagree with you. You'd still get downvotes, of course. Some people seem to dislike your opinions, in case you hadn't noticed.

          • Sir, as a mathematician, I applaud this comment.

        • "I never said no women are open to casual sex. I'm saying it's much more difficult to get them to agree to it than it is for men"

          So what are you arguing about then? That's the exact point the article makes–that women are no less sexual than men, but are more hesitant to actually act on it.

          • I think he's disagreeing with the conclusions of the surveys. He's saying women aren't really turning down casual sex because it carries a high risk of no-pleasure or danger, but instead because they can't be convinced that the men propositioning them are proper wealthy alpha-male types just from glancing at them. (Paraphrasing and being a touch hyperbolic there.)

          • Yeah, I've gathered that from the other threads. *sigh* The problem is he keeps referring back to the initial experiments as if they somehow prove something we're denying. But all they prove is that women don't accept those proposals, not why.

          • Yeah he's pointing out that the surveys aren't irrefutable as though that is solid evidence that his theories, despite being utterly unsupported, are correct.

          • I love how, according to him, if men like physical beauty in a woman, he just likes physical beauty! But if women like physical beauty in a man, it's super secret code for $$moneystatusALPHAASSHOLE!

          • But when I was watching Pirates of the Caribbean, I was totally thinking about Johnny Depp's high status as a celebrity and the fact that he is ridiculously wealthy! It had nothing to do with the high cheekbones, the rakish off-kilter charm, or the fact that he was playing a pirate.

          • No, no nothing AT ALL. Now where did I stash me rum.

    • I'm curious to hear about this empirical data you're talking about. Do you mean the original study, or have you collected your own data? If so, how are you choosing your sample, and what is your sample size? How are you recording and analyzing your data? What generalizable claims are you trying to make, and to whom do they generalize?

      Or … are you just using the words "empirical data" to describe your personal experience? Because I'm perfectly willing to believe that your experiences don't match this study. I'm just not willing to believe that they generalize without some further evidence.

      • I'm referring to the first two studies mentioned in the article. The ones where they actually ran a real experiment and recorded the results, rather than just asking people to fill out survey questions.

        • Because surveys don't produce scientifically relevant data? Someone didn't pay attention in psychology class.

        • Those studies showed that women did not accept the proposals. The studies offered ZERO EVIDENCE for WHY those women did not accept, and the theory presented (lower libido) was entirely supposition. Therefore, all the study showed, from a scientific standpoint, was that women did not accept the proposals while men did.

          The questionnaire study backs up the result of the first study (women did not accept the proposals) and ALSO shows that there are several common reasons why. It proves the first part, and disproves the supposition that libido is the lone/primary cause.

          The questionnaire study shows that women choose to accept/deny sexual propositions based on perceptions of safety and likely sexual pleasure. They show that the specific sort of proposal used in the first study ranks poorly for both perceived safety and perceived sexual pleasure, and that as a result the low acceptance levels among women are inevitable. It also shows, by noting examples where women do say yes to propositions, that women are open to sexual encounters when their safety and sexual pleasure seem reasonably secure.

          What's to dispute, here? Only one study provided evidence for it's specific conclusions.

    • Because sexual relations that build over time and instantaneous life and death situations are totally the same thing and therefore comparable…..

    • "Oh, but it did. At least as far as the subjects were concerned. And the simple fact is, though this kind of boorish approach to casual sex is very rare, men pounce on it, while women run for the hills. "

      Yes, no one (NO ONE) is arguing that the Clark-Hatfield study didn't soundly prove that women approached in broad daylight with an off-the-bad proposal for casual sex are highly unlikely to accept. This is an established fact now; apparently PUAs knew it forever. I imagine many people would have guessed at its voracity.

      However, the study lacks external validity and generalizeability to the context it purports to study. It simply does not measure the likelihood of women to accept a proposal of casual sex in a situation where such an offer is not a huge anomaly. I believe the idea beging put forth by those involved in the survey research is that if someone were to run a study proposing casual sex to people in a more expected setting such as a bar or nightclub, there might be less of a glaring gender difference. Unfortunately, my brief research suggests that there is not such a study to reference at the moment. We can only hope that the field of psychology will catch up with speculation.

  15. Dr_NerdLove says:

    Or, y'know, what Mel said…

  16. The difference in how the sexes respond to this kind of cold approach is explained entirely by the different ways that men and women assess mate value. With men, a woman's physical attractiveness the THE determinate factor in this assessment. So it's easy for men to make a judgement about sexual fitness in about half a second. All he has to do is look.

    Women, on the other hand, determine mate value with a more complicated matrix, with the most important factor being status/psycho-social dominance/charisma (call it whatever). It's virtually impossible for a woman to determine this in the kind of snap-judgement scenario in the studies above. So they overwhelmingly reject them.

    Note that this is supported by their stated reactions to male celebrities. Johnny Depp's easily recognizable visage IS his status.

    • Dr_NerdLove says:

      Donald Trump is higher status by those standards. Evolutionary Psychology states that he's the more alpha of the two, ergo women should be more likely to go with HIM.Except they don't. They go with Johnny Depp.Even when presented with someone equally as charming and charismatic, they choose Johnny.Why?Because he's more familiar to them and the familiarity mitigates the potential risk and his behavior indicates that he'll be a better lay than Trump or Carrot Top.

      • *shudder* at the thought of having sex with Donald Trump. There's not enough money in the world. Unless, he has some crazy kink, then I would do it, take pictures, and release them to the media.

        • Speak only for yourself.
          You can say, "I am woman and I personally am lying when I say personality is attractive, I only care about looks, money, or some combination of those two factors."

          If, on the other hand, you are not a woman (which I suspect), then you should try to avoid pronouncing what it is women are thinking…because you don't know.

          I've had lots of great relationships with women…and it wasn't money they were going for…since I didn't have money until recently. So, I suppose you are saying I'm super hot. Thanks!
          While I have had some relationships with women who liked me for my looks, I'm pretty sure most people were dating me for my personality.

        • I'm going to take the low road, since Trooper6 has covered the high one:

          I'm sure you're quite the expert in attractive personalities…

          • Tag Team! +1

          • Re: the Donald Trump story. Who said it, where and in what context?

            Maybe that particular woman found his money and power attractive.

            Or maybe Donald Trump is good at sex.

            Or maybe he isn't good at sex, but someone asked her publicly and she didn't want to hurt his feelings or come off as a gold-digger or sound like a bitch…I don't know–what was she SUPPOSED to say?

        • Anonymoose47 says:

          I think it'd be less about worrying about being "PC" and more about just appearing as open-minded and non-judgemental as possible. :p

      • It's not because he's more familiar, Dr. NerdLove, sorry. I would not do Trump in ten million years, I don't care how much money he has. Now Johnny? Yeah, about that.

        His persona on screen is sensual and slinky like a cat no matter what he plays and so that seems like the core of his personality and that is hot.

        Trump seems selfish, and Carrot Top seems like the type to want to do something strange with rubber chickens.

        I'm familiar with all three, Johnny is actually appealing.

      • DNL, I think you are again conflating money with status. While Trump probably has more money, Depp has higher status, by an order of magnitude. (Years of public buffoonery by Trump has diminished it significantly.)

        You are on to something regarding familiarity. I'd bet that far more women (especially younger) could identify Depp, and therefore his status. Fame, or infamy, is perhaps the biggest single contributor to status. Depp has way more of it than Trump.

        • ok, how about my old example of Louis C.K.? He's less famous than Depp, and much less attractive, but since I watch Louie, I kinda feel like I know him a little, and I'm more likely to have sex with him.

          • Tribal affiliations matter. Outgroup fame and status count for much less than ingroup.

          • Refutation: I would gladly bang the guy with the cute smile I saw earlier today working the line at Starbucks. Yeah, gimme that sweet, sweet minimum wage status and fame, minus the LTR.

            In fact… that was only like, 20 minutes ago.

            *grabs some condoms*
            Don't wait up.

        • Anonymoose47 says:

          Doesn't Trump still get a new Russian supermodel every decade or so? Money still gets you places.

          • Yes, it gets you places with women who can be purchased. Also, a lot of Russian women really love money (I'm Russian, so inside look at the culture), it's a result of living under the "communist" regime for so long, they are obsessed with comforts and stability, much more than with deeper qualities.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            Would it be wrong to say that comfort and stability are deeper qualities from a russian woman's perspective?

          • No, not wrong. If you lived in communist russia, you would also highly value those qualities.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            I guess the lesson is cultural stuff can make a big difference too.

          • Of course, that's actually why I don't date Russian men. They tend to value traditional gender roles, and being the "heads of households", which is not really my style.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            Don't forget sobriety. Granted, it correlates with stability.

          • Was that a drunk Russian joke? Original.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            Ha, ha, only serious. In a society where drinking is a serious social problem, and I think it's fair to say that Russia qualifies, "fun at parties" isn't such an advantage, and I've known Russian women to cite that as a reason not to date Russian men.

          • Juuuuuulia says:

            It's not because they love him or find him attractive. It's because Russia is a crappy, crappy place to live.

          • exactly!

        • I don't understand why you claim to understand more about what women want than THE ACTUAL WOMEN who are here again and again explaining what they want and why. What makes you better than them at this? What qualifies you to talk about what "all women want", like women all want the same thing for the same reasons, and you somehow magically figured it out byt "watching" them? I honestly do not understand.

      • My guess is that Trump has no more difficulty getting attractive women than Depp does. But they're probably the kind of attractive woman I would want nothing to do with.

    • "Women, on the other hand, determine mate value with a more complicated matrix, with the most important factor being status/psycho-social dominance/charisma (call it whatever). It's virtually impossible for a woman to determine this in the kind of snap-judgement scenario in the studies above. So they overwhelmingly reject them. "

      I love how you assert this as if all the women here stating otherwise are total anomalies whose experiences aren't worth taking into consideration.

    • Speaking as a woman, I'm aware of what attracts me to someone sexually, thank you, and you're talking out of your ass.

    • Here's the problem with your theory, if I'm a woman on the hunt for sex, I don't want a mate, I want sex. The hotter the guy is the better. It isn't some grand cosmic genetic scheme involving children holding me back. That's what birth control is for. It's the likelihood that I'll end up with a selfish lover at best, and dead in a ditch at worst that holds me back.

      • Your fancy neocortex does want sex. But way down deep in that lizard brain, where no conscious thought occurs, 100,000 years of biological imperatives want a mate.

        " The hotter the guy is the better. "

        Naturally. Good physical appearance signifies reproductive fitness. "Good genes," if you will.

        • So basically you're saying that the reason women turn down a stranger who walks up to her and immediately propositions her is mainly because some unconscious part of her brain isn't sure what his status is? And that her conscious concerns about whether this stranger will actually consider her pleasure in bed, turn out to be a psycho killer, etc., are just excuses she makes up?

          I'm not sure how it's reasonable or logical assume people are driven more by unconscious evolutionary tics than by immediate and very real concerns. Actually, that sounds pretty illogical to me.

          • Anonyleast says:

            The funny thing is: fear that the guy might get her alone and kill her is something that actually comes "down deep in that lizard brain (frankly, an insult to lizards, some can be very intelligent and good at learning)" while he mis-attributes sexual drive to a part of the brain that only exists in humans.

            Plus, fear of death is something known to be hardwired into people from it's obvious evolutionary advantage.

        • So, you're saying if I just wanted sex for sex, I wouldn't choose the most physically appealing beautiful person I could get away with if I didn't have to figure in the "Will he be selfish in bed and/or hurt me" factor.

          Call me human but I am perfectly willing to objectify boys if we're talking sex for sex's sake. (Thank's for the pic above, BTW Dr)

          But here's the catch, isn't that exactly what men are doing with casual sex?

          So there is no real difference between men and women. I'd be perfectly willing to have some fun with someone I find attractive.

          Now if you are saying what I find attractive is driven by whatever theory you're touting, every woman is different. I like different guys for different reasons, and the spectrum of attractive can be HUGE, and that's just me.

          Now I'm married, so I don't. But if I were single again, *shrugs*

          • What I'm saying is that our conscious decisions about who we want to bang just for fun are subconsciously informed by hundreds of thousands of years of evolution regarding reproductive fitness and mate selection.

            There is a reason we don't find people with bad skin attractive, for instance, even though we consciously know there is nothing "wrong" with a bad complexion. Clear skin was a biological signifier of good health, while the opposite was one of disease.

          • So, what is your point? The whole article and discussion is about whether or not women want to bang for fun at all, not who they want to bang for fun.

            We're saying, yes, we do want to bang for fun if we feel we are safe and we're likely to find it a satisfying experience.

            Who we bang is entirely up to us and doesn't have any bearing on this conversation.

          • My point is that the different criteria males and females use for mate selection/value are largely responsible for the wildly different responses to the "Hey stranger, want to go bang?" question.

          • Yeah? What evidence do you have that supports that? Because the original studies that were mentioned weren't conducted in such a way to give you any data that would support (or refute) that claim. So… given the number of women here who are personally refuting your assertion I would want to see some pretty solid data supporting it to think that you were making a point and not just talking out your ass.

          • And where is your proof of that? You keep harping about science and what constitutes actual proof of how humans behave, but you haven't produced a single piece of scientific evidence that the reason women turned down the men in that study was because they didn't know what the men's status was.

            At least the survey study has actual data. All you have is your own assumptions. Scientific experiments may provide more proof than surveys, but surveys provide a lot more proof than one guy making random claims.

          • Not how human evolution works!
            It doesn't work that way!
            Doesn't.

            Oh god, I cannot get my doctorate fast enough to correct nearly a century worth of accepted misinformation about evolution.
            What a mess.

          • There's a difference between our choices being "informed" by subconscious preferences and being dictated by them. No one's saying that it's impossible that evolutionary psychology has anything to do with who women (or men) choose to have sex with. We're just rejecting your claim that it's the only or even the primary determining factor.

            As I said above (and you've chosen to ignore), it seems illogical to me to assume that unconscious evolutionary tics have more sway over a woman than her awareness that a strange guy who propositions her the second he approaches her is a) defying social norms, which means he may not follow other social norms like "it's not okay to hurt other people" and b) so concerned about getting what he wants (sex) that he doesn't care about even chatting with her for five minutes to find out if she finds him at all appealing, which means he may not be particularly concerned about finding out what appeals to her in bed either.

            People do things all the time that run contrary to what evolution would dictate, because of other more present concerns and interests. I'm not sure why you're so committed to the idea that when it comes to dating, our higher brain functions suddenly stop working. And even if it is all evolution, wouldn't the evolutionary drive to avoid people acting strangely aggressive so, y'know, we *stay alive* take precedence over concerns about who best to reproduce with?

          • "a strange guy who propositions her the second he approaches her is a) defying social norms, which means he may not follow other social norms like "it's not okay to hurt other people" and b) so concerned about getting what he wants (sex) that he doesn't care about even chatting with her for five minutes to find out if she finds him at all appealing, which means he may not be particularly concerned about finding out what appeals to her in bed either."

            I'd posit that a woman who does this to a man is defying even MORE social norms. Yet the vast majority of men seem to have no problem with it. Why?

            The same goes for the second point. She may not be particularly concerned with finding out what appeals to him in bed. But this doesn't seem to stop most men from agreeing anyway. Why?

          • These were both answered. Because both genders feel the risk of male on female violence significantly outweighs the risk of female on male violence, which means men are more likely to agree and feel confident in their ability to leave if they don't like how things are going. Second 98% of the time the guy is going to get off during sex, that is a very low probability that the sex he has with this woman will not provide basic sexual satisfaction, while only 35% of women are likely to orgasm their first time with a strange partner, which is a significant risk of unsatisfactory sex.

          • So… innate biological differences, then?

          • So… different risk factors for participating in the activity that make it less likely to be enjoyable, then.

          • In what world do "different risk factors" equate to "innate biological differences"? Are you trying to assert that "women are generally smaller than men" and "women require a more concerted effort to achieve orgasm" support your theory that it's really all about looking for status markers? What do those have to do with each other?

          • Give up, I think. He's not going to actually debate with you — he's just going to keep repeating the same assertions without addressing what you said.

          • I.E. what folks like him always do. Talk a bunch of hot air from their glass houses…

          • Partly, yes. Partly, based on psycho-social factors like the fact that men are socialized to be more aggressive than women and to think violence is acceptable, and that if a woman is assaulted (especially after willingly going off with a strange man) she's likely to be held equally or even more responsible for it than her attacker.

            Even if it was all innate biological differences, I'm not sure how that would prove your point.

          • "I'd posit that a woman who does this to a man is defying even MORE social norms. Yet the vast majority of men seem to have no problem with it. Why?"

            Because there are far fewer cases of women assaulting men than men assaulting women, and men can usually overpower a woman if she tries to hurt them, so while they may think she's odd for propositioning them, they don't feel they're in physical danger.

            "The same goes for the second point. She may not be particularly concerned with finding out what appeals to him in bed. But this doesn't seem to stop most men from agreeing anyway. Why?"

            Because as has been pointed out numerous times, men know they'll most likely get off regardless of what the woman does, whereas women know they'll probably *not* get off unless the man's considerate. So it matters a heck of a lot more to women.

            Could you please stop going on as if we haven't already discussed these points in other threads here?

          • And also, I'll repeat again: can you provide one bit of scientific evidence that women make these decisions based on status?

            I've provided an article reporting on studies that show women have a much harder time getting off during sex than men do. I can provide lots of statistics on the incidences of assault across genders if you'd like, with sources. If you can't provide any proof of your assertions other than your own words, why should any of us believe you?

          • "And also, I'll repeat again: can you provide one bit of scientific evidence that women make these decisions based on status? "
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geoffrey_Arend

            Homeboy ain't no fry cook.

          • An actor's wikipedia page is scientific evidence? Amazing.

          • Actually, I think that example works against your argument. Christina Hendricks is by many guys' assessment a very attractive woman. There are a lot of single guys who are as famous or more famous than Geoffrey Arend who are also more conventionally physically attractive, some of whom surely would have been interested in her. So clearly Hendricks chose Arend not just because of evolutionary reasons like finding the most fit and successful father for her children, but other reasons like, oh, maybe personality as well.

            Plus, providing one example of one relationship is hardly "scientific evidence" (did you run an experiment to see which man Hendricks would marry? somehow I'm guessing not) on the order you've been asking for. It's certainly a lot less data than the surveys that collected information from a wide pool of respondents.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            People with a huge spectrum of attractiveness tend not to stay single very long unless they want to. People with a narrow spectrum of attractiveness tend to stay single longer, holding out for someone who meets their exacting standards. The fact that someone who's taken has reasonable standards says little about the actual dating pool.

            (The preceding paragraph has been written without reference to gender.)

        • Yeah. That's why what's considered attractive hasn't changed for the past thousands of years, and all women find the same things attractive. Obviously the fact that I find guys with glasses attractive means that glasses are a sign of "good genes".
          Please, stop talking to us as if we're animals who do not know or understand what we want, and you're some mighty expert. Just stop.

          • No, silly, that's because glasses can be used to make fire. Your cavewoman brain knows that fire=good.

            And this explains why all girls like bad boys: fire=good, yes, but fire also=ouch. Therefore, dangerous men are more like fire; source of light in the darkness, heat in the winter, food that is tasty and cooked.

          • *applauds*

          • "That's why what's considered attractive hasn't changed for the past thousands of years, "

            It's changed a lot less than what you probably think.

            "all women find the same things attractive"

            I never said that.

            "Obviously the fact that I find guys with glasses attractive means that glasses are a sign of "good genes". "

            Where would you get such an idea? More likely you find them attractive because they are an tribal ingroup signifier, if I were to guess. Or you just find them pleasing to look at.

            "stop talking to us as if we're animals"

            We are animals.

          • It's changed a lot less than what you probably think.

            Please feel free to stop talking out of your ass any time now. Just because HBO historical fictions star people who are attractive to the modern viewer doesn't mean that those people actually looked like that. What is considered attractive is different in other parts of world, different from just 100 years ago, and will probably be different 100 years from now.

            You may be an animal. I am a rational human being. One who has actually studied history, including some of the fascinating changes in beauty standards over the centuries. I can recommend some books if you'd like to have an actual educated contribution to the discussion.

          • Sadly I can only give this comment a single +1, and not all of the +1's that it deserves.

          • BritterSweet says:

            That's what teamwork is for!

          • Beauty is pretty well objective. Look at what happens when people are shown portraits that composite hundreds of different people in to an "average" face. Regardless of location or culture, these are almost always rated a VERY attractive by those viewing them. It's our deviation from the perceived mean that makes us ugly. That's about as objective as you get.

          • Your argument remains flawed. Squirrel is referring not just to looking at a face, but to trends in what is considered attractive over time. What body types, behaviors, modes of communication, etc, that we find attractive change over time.

          • Body type hasn't really changed either (outside of some relatively tiny, usually insular subgroups).

            And before "But Reubens!!!" , I assure you I can point to a half a dozen contemporaries that were not painting women in those… proportions.

          • Can you please show evidence or stop?
            I study history, and all I've eveer seen seems to indicate that beauty standards have changed dramatically. How can you claim beauty and body standards have not changed with time???? I mean, you don't even have to go that far, the 70's are almost proof of that. Also, different cultures, different things are seen as attractive. But here, take this: http://elodieunderglass.wordpress.com/2012/10/18/

            Also, do you really think you can just ignore culture and society and treat us like any other mammal?
            Also, please, feel free to provide scientific evidence of your claims that is not a single wikipedia page. You are just making yourself look stupid in front of people who actually studied this stuff…

          • In all fairness, this doesn't exactly undo his argument. For example, we used to find fat pale people attractive because these characteristics indicated wealth and status (i.e. your family could afford to feed you and you didn't have to work in the fields all day long). Only recently do thin, tanned bodies become the ideals of beauty, because now they represent wealth and status. You could argue that basically all of our stylistic decisions are visual short-hands for status (within a particular community).

          • Except that Vic was claiming that it's *women* who care about status, and men only care about women meeting some supposedly objective and unchanging standard of physical beauty.

          • And he also tried saying that if women say they DO care about physical beauty, it still all just boiled down to status, money and BABIES to us silly women.

            If all women cared about was status, all the time, how do you explain the gals who date the jobless but super-hot artist or garage band musician? It's not like this scenario doesn't happen.

            Women think with our loins sometimes, too.

            And I'm going to toss out the feminism here, which should be brought up everytime some guy claims that money-grubbing is just hardwired into us ladies. I won't dispute that there exists an attitude out there that men should "take care" of women and women should look to marry at least a guy who can "provide". It's an old-fashioned attitude that even my own grandparents have expressed.

            But for centuries, women weren't even ALLOWED to own their own money. They HAD to marry it, or live penniless (or with their parents forever as an old maid). Now, of course, this doesn't happen, but the attitudes can take a long time to suss their way out of the social consciousness.

            Even as recently as the 80s, you had widespread discrimination against women workers. Sure, we were "equal" in the lawbooks, but…Jobs were given to men "with families to support", women were denied jobs because they might get pregnant and the client doesn't want to deal with a woman manager, you understand the way it is, right? Sexual harassment only started getting the serious treatment it deserved in the dreaded PC 90s, and even today the above attitudes STILL happen in places and we STILL don't have equal pay.

            My point in all this is that it's social forces, not hardwired bullshit, that keeps some women looking for money. On the flip side, these same social forces shame men who aren't "providers", so yay to feminism for breaking down these crappy roles.

          • What about bodies? In different times and places, women have been considered most attractive if they're plump and curvy, or thin and curvy, or thin and not curvy, statuesque, petite, etc. etc. Unless you're claiming that men don't take women's bodies into account when deciding whether they're attractive? If anything, when I hear guys talking about women, they focus *more* on the body than the face.

          • Y'know, I had this whole thing written out, but fuck it. People have pointed out that your argument is flawed, have made reasoned rebuttals to your assertions, and you still reject them. The book recommendation offer still stands, but I'm not going to sit here and waste my time trying to educate you when you so clearly have no interest in reevaluating your opinion.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Its probably changed more than you think. Watch a movie a day. Start with something that just came out on DVD and work back by a decade or so each time. By the time you get to silent films, you're only a hundred or so years back but you're also on the tail end of Victorian sensibilities. You'll find some pretty important changes just in that hundred years.

        • "But way down deep in that lizard brain, where no conscious thought occurs, 100,000 years of biological imperatives want a mate."

          Be careful with evolutionary claims on human behavior; humans are the only species that has evolved to cooperative cultural transmission of information, and that changes everything. When you don't have that, innate behavior is an advantage, when you do it is a disadvantage and should be selected against.

        • Oh. my. god.

          Not how genetics works.

    • "With men, a woman's physical attractiveness the THE determinate factor in this assessment. So it's easy for men to make a judgement about sexual fitness in about half a second. All he has to do is look."

      Everyone is focusing on your comments about women, so just for the record, I'd like to reject your claim about men. It simply cannot be true, as my perception of physical attractiveness can change wildly for the same person depending on other criteria.

      • Every bell curve has its tails.

        • I'm going to have to agree with Kilo. Which means that you and your beliefs about how men judge sexual fitness are probably the ones on the tail of the bell curve. (See? I can make claims of fact with nothing to back them up too!)

        • Bell curve? Interesting. From the way you're talking I would have guessed you would think it was much less symmetrical and had most of its mass not in the middle but at one end, such as a power law probability distribution.

    • LazieLizzie says:

      The man I first slept with did not meet any of your requirements.

      He was an artistic major, and therefore it was exceptionally unlikely for him to have lots of money. He had only a handful of friends and was apparently unpopular in high school, so he didn't have any social status. I'd never seen him interact with any other girls, so he wasn't someone I had to compete for.

      I slept with him because I knew he wouldn't hurt me and I knew that he found my pleasure just as important as his own. Plain and simple.

      • Again, money != status. Many a shiftless ne'er-d-well has been able to pull how women.

        • HOT women that is. :)

        • She didn't just mention money, she also said he was unpopular, had few friends, and didn't interact with other women on a regular enough basis for her to have seen him do so. If "status" does not refer to financial, social, or romantic success, then what does it mean to you exactly?

    • "psycho-social dominance"

      yeah I'm pretty sure you made that phrase up

      • I assure you I didn't.

        • To use poor man's corpus linguistics, google gives me about 23 hits for that phrase. Most of these are either from one researcher's output (on the relation between indigenous and colonizing populations) or the dregs of the PUAsphere (and note that there is still only a very tiny number of page hits there). So the term exists, but is ridiculoucly rare, so rare that I would guess it mostly exists in the idiolect of a few speakers but has little to no traction even ingroup. At 23 observations of a two-word (or three-word, depending on your analysis) phrase containing relatively productive lexemes, it seems quite likely that they are ad-hoc constructions.

          Seriously, the number of observations here is so low that I would intutitively expect more by pure chance; proper quantitative work using google is a pain though and I don't want to do that right now.

          • TL;DR "Yeah, Vic was right."

          • Depends on what Max meant by "you made that phrase up". If he meant that no one in the history of the universe ever used that phrase, then you were right. If he meant that this was mostly an ad-hoc construed phrase (i.e. something that individual speakers make up on the fly) then he seems to have been right.

            I actually thought you were right before I did that investigation, probably because i was lead astray by "social dominance" which clearly is a concept in widespread use. "Psycho-social dominance", however, isn't.

          • I took "you made the phrase up" to mean… you made the phrase up. Which I demonstrably did not. Therefore, I was right and he was wrong.

          • No, the only thing we can demonstrate is that if you did make it up, you are not the only one who did. And, of course, that the term does not seem to be in widespread use.

            You say that you have picked this term up from somewhere, and I feel inclined to believe you. Even though you might lie to us or to yourself about this. :)

  17. Oh, totally! I didn't mean that how men behave has no influence over how much their partners enjoy sex. Quite the contrary. But the baseline level of enjoyment–the fact that it's easier for men to obtain that enjoyment than for women–does seem to be biological. Men don't get off more easily in general because women are so much more skilled than men, but because of how our bodies are built. (And, okay, there are also factors of social conditioning etc., but I'm pretty sure even in a completely sexually open and equal society, it would still be easier for men to orgasm than women.)

    • Is there also a factor that for a guy sex doesn't stop until he gets off for the most part? But if a woman doesn't, and a guy does, then it is still game over, she's out of luck.

      Disclaimer, yes, I've had sex where the guy couldn't or didn't get off, and that's okay. I'm just talking in the majority here.

      • Well, technically a considerate lover, if he came before his partner did, would offer to get her to that point by other means (hands, mouth, etc.), in which case, she wouldn't be out of luck. :) Which all comes back to why women want to know a guy's going to be considerate, not just in it for himself.

        • Yes, exactly, that's exactly why it is a concern. Are you perceived as the kind of guy who will keep at it by whatever means, raising her estimation that she might enjoy sex with you?

        • Anonymoose47 says:

          So how do you project that?

          • Well, before you get to the sex propositioning part, you can indicate that you're considerate by doing things like asking the woman about herself and showing an interest (even if it's just casual topics), avoiding mocking or belittling talk relating to her or other women, being polite and not overly demanding with other women around you (e.g., female bartender, waitress)–you know, basic "I'm a decent person being who's happier when the women around me are content as opposed to not" stuff.

        • To lower this "might not be a good lover" risk then, what you'd have to do is show that you were interested in her pleasure and what she likes instead of only interested in your pleasure as a guy.

          • It's the difference between,

            "I think you're hot. You could totally get me off." (Not so hot)

            And

            "I want to kiss every inch of you, and I won't stop until you can't breathe." (Hot.)

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            That's it? :|

          • Well, that's only hot if the other person is into it too. As an opening line from a stranger, that'd probably come off pretty creepy!

            Better to start by psychically projecting "I'd love to talk to you," move up to "I'd love to kiss you," and then move onto "I want to kiss every inch…" once you've got a more intense connection going.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            Yeah, that makes sense. Start from square one and slowly escalate to see if things are going to go there or not.

            Just seems very simple.

          • Most human interaction is…except for the fact that you have to make judgement calls and remember that everyone's different in some ways and that stuff.

            Simple but sometimes not? :)

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            I've always found it pretty difficult, but maybe reading it just makes it seem simpler than it is.

          • I guess the basic theory is pretty simple, but it can take a good amount of practice to get good at. Kind of like a musical instrument, I guess.

            Still, at whatever skill level, you can't go wrong by being respectful, assuming the other person is a human being, and paying attention to cues to see how to progress.

          • I didn't mean it as an opening line, but something to say at some point that had a different focus away from self and onto the pleasure of the sexual partner. Your comment is dead on.

          • No, it's not like there's a magic formula that works with all women. But Jess' example is good — it shows a difference in focus.

          • Anonymoose47 says:

            Yeah, but getting to that point. Even if I finished early, I'd want her to get something out of it (and dat ego boost from actually giving her something out of it wouldn't hurt). I'm not sure how you project or communicate that before you're between the sheets.

          • Mel has it right up above. It's a matter of being aware of yourself and asking yourself if you are being courteous and generous with the people all around you, and if you are being respectful of the people you talk about. If you take care to show her through your actions that you care about her comfort and you want to make sure she feels relaxed and good with you, she'll be more likely to think you'd be that way in bed.

          • Definitely.

            I thik also having a laid back attitude about it is good, not driving the encounter towards immediate sex with a laser-like intensity. Someone who seems hyper-focused on having sex kind of gives the impression that they won't care about their partner once they've gotten off. And no one likes to feel like their sexual enjoyment is a chore for others, so, especially for women who take a bit longer, it feels like less pressure (and therefore more enjoyment) if you don't seem rushed on getting into bed.

            I'd say also having a bit of a sense of humor and fun helps. Sex can be awkward and ridiculous, and can even feel embarrassing, so a partner who is comfortable with that can make things more relaxed.

          • This. A lot! Sense of humor is awesome, especially in bed.

          • Confidence needs to play a part too.

          • Be careful with that "ego boost" attitude, some women are harder to get off than others, some women can't get off the first time with a new lover, and some women can't get off at all. If you try, but can't get a woman off right away, or the first time, *please* do not react like you are some failure or start verbally beating yourself up about it. It puts a lot of pressure on the woman and may make it even harder for her to orgasm at a future time with you, and possibly encourage her to fake it, which no one wants. Just say "it's ok, we can try again later." and move on.

            Also, reading from your past comments, you might enjoy a blog entry I wrote about sex: http://blogsfeme.com/2012/08/27/yevas-rules-lets-

          • Camelopardalis says:

            "and dat ego boost from actually giving her something out of it wouldn't hurt)"

            Get over this. Her pleasure is about her, not about you.

    • Exactly. From a biological standpoint, if a male doesn't orgasm, that's real bad for reproduction. If a female doesn't, oh well. She can be just a pregnant. This isn't to say there are no reproductive benefits to getting a woman to orgasm. Satisfying sex would increase the likelihood of future mating.

  18. The "I'm a man I can't help it" schtick always annoyed me. I'm a man and knew that I had a very high libido since middle school. My romantic and sexual experience has not been that much. I've been able to control it and behave appropriately around women. I don't even consider myself to have above average will power.

    On the other hand, I really really want to have sex and want in sooner than latte. Unfortunately, I can't seem to make any progress in that direction. Genetics or God, depending on your point of view saw it fit to give me a high libido and bunch of issues that would make fulfilling this libido an impossibility. I hate this constant feeling of anxiety, desperation, desire, and passion without an outlet.

    • Yes, I realize that outlet isn't the best word to use and objectifies women to a large extent but I constant;y feel that I need a release with another person. This really sucks.

      • Find a professional, treat her nicely, and tip her WELL.

        Seriously, and no shame or judgement intended. That’s her job, and most sex workers do appreciate steady repeat clients who aren’t jerks.

        And…you might also consider finding a massage therapist for non-sexual touching. There is research out there that suggests that men who are deprived of touching tend to respond to touch sexually, even if it wasn’t intended sexually. Getting a regular massage fills in that “touch gap” and may help tone down the frustration (even if it doesn’t put a dent in your libido).

        • Anonymoose47 says:

          "There is research out there that suggests that men who are deprived of touching tend to respond to touch sexually, even if it wasn't intended sexually."

          Very true.

        • I dance so being touched starved is thankfully not a problem. Plus I had messages in the past and never enjoyed them. What I like is back scratching.

          Also, if you read this comment section in the past I've given a wide variety of reason why I haven't went to a professional. Its illegal and I don't want to risk getting caught even though the chance is rather low. Since I'm a lawyer, I could loose my license if I get caught. I also have serious ethical and moral reservations about commerical sex even though I watch porn. Finally, I think using a professional will cause more problems than it would solve. I feel so utterly powerless.

    • see my response to Wendy above on how to create familiarity quickly without actually knowing a person for a long time.

      • This is stuff I know and done in the past. It worked to an extent in that I've developed temporarily familiarity but nothing else beyond this.

        My therapist believes that my problem is that a lot of people don't know what to make of me. Basically, that I come off as perplexing and having something weird about me. At the same time, my behavior and interactions are too normal for people to waive away this weirdness as eccentrincity or whatever excuse the might give to other people. Since I come off as perplexing, and not in a sexy mystique sort of way, its affecting my romance life or even life in general no matter how polite and charming I am.

        • Huh. That is weird… Maybe you're always over-thinking your interactions, so that even though you're *acting* normal, people still catch on to the something else that is going on in your head. I know I'm the same way sometimes. Do you drink? Alcohol helps.

          • Yes, I drink alcohol and I do not think I'm over-thinking my interactions. I used to in the past but now I go with the flow. At this point, I really have no idea what to do besides keep trying until I get success. I feel that I'm hitting a wall.

  19. About women being labelled as sluts… if you'll allow me to play devil's advocate for a moment, aren't people who indulge in slut-shaming so far beneath contempt as to be dismissed and ignored from the get-go? It feels like slut-shamers are being given a tremendous amount of power that maybe they shouldn't have, and that many women will go to great lengths to avoid the label, even while recognizing that the label is absurd and morally bankrupt. Why is that?

    (FWIW, I'm sure there are excellent reasons for this – I'm just curious as to what they are)

    • The problem is it isn't just a few contemptuous people who engage in various forms of slut-shaming. It's an attitude that totally pervades our society. A woman speaks up in favor of health care covering birth control, and various male politicians and news reporters see this as a reason to snark about her theoretical sexual promiscuity. A woman is raped and half of the people reporting on or responding to the news will take note of what she was wearing, how sexually active she was before this point, whether she was flirting with the guy, etc., as if this somehow makes her more or less responsible for the assault. Books, movies, TV shows, and other forms of media continue to portray women who are sexually assertive and/or have multiple partners as ill-intentioned, damaged, or simply less desirable than their more "pure" counterparts.

      Asking why women don't just dismiss people with this attitude is like asking why people of color don't just dismiss those contemptuous people with racist attitudes. It's very difficult to ignore and avoid letting it affect you when it's all around you.

      • I feel like I should point out that, these days, there seems to be an equal or greater public outcry every time that stuff happens.

        • Indeed, I am glad to see a greater social awareness of how screwed up slut-shaming is.
          It is still prevalent but it is being challenged directly and openly and gathering support. :)

        • I'm definitely glad to see that, but it still horrifies me that any person who holds political office thinks he has a right to publicly speculate about a woman's sexual behavior, and the public outcry is not even enough that he has to bother to apologize (as far as I know). It's not like one person makes these comments and then everyone else in the country gets pissed off. It's more like half the country makes those comments and the other half gets pissed off, and you have a standoff. The situation's definitely getting better, but the fact that it still happens so much at all is a sign that it's still pretty darn bad.

    • When it comes to concerns of "being labeled a slut", it varies in degrees of severity.
      Sometimes you are just dealing with one douchebag who is looking for the easiest way to cut you down. The easiest way to bring a woman's credibility down is to call her a slut.
      Sometimes you are dealing with the reaction of your friends, family or community….people in your life that you co-exist with, depend on, work with, etc.

      Being a "slut" doesn't mean you have to have tons of boundary-stomping, nondiscriminatory sex.
      Being a "slut" means being a woman who got too close to being sexual or is way too comfortable being sexual.

      You made out behind the school with a guy but you didn't end up dating him? You are a slut now.
      You let a guy get to second base with you on the first date? Slut.
      You went to a conference in NYC and hooked up with some guy off a dating website? Slut.
      You flirted with a guy at the park and gave him your number? Slut.
      You were in a threesome? Slut.
      You want to have sex with your partner everyday? Or You practice abstinence? You are a slut waiting to happen.

      It is way too easy of a word to resort to and, in isolated instances, it is easy to brush off. But that isn't always the case. It can also be a very difficult label to shake off.
      The most I suffered of this was when a friend, non-maliciously, described me to someone else has having a "high libido". Not as "promiscuous" but just as having a "high libido." That is all.
      I work up one morning to find nasty anonymous messages on my computer and a message board used for local community events full of vulgar posts about how wrecked and nasty my vagina was. Not because I had too much sex. But because I often wanted sex.
      This is harassment within my community. These are people I see often, work around or travel with. These are people who will ostracize me, be hostile toward me, and block me from participating in the community.
      I was labeled a slut because I wasn't ashamed enough about sex.
      I was confronted by people who wanted to put that shame back into me every time I went out.

      Now, I became quite stressed out and, some days, I just didn't want to deal with it. But I never backpeddled. I never denied my libido. And I built up some mental-armor against word "slut". But this did not change how people perceived me and it took some time before people started treating me like a decent human being again….even so, many still do not.

      So when I come across a guy who I find sexually attractive, I have to evaluate his attitudes about women and sex. If I am convinced he is a decent dude who won't get cynical on me and turn our fun into a regrettable experience, I go for it. If I have no indication that he is a decent dude, I don't bother.|
      Sex is awesome!…but it is often not worth the drama.
      Fortunately, I know where to find decent dudes, so I don't have to resort to taking risks with random guys to find sex.

      Not all ladies in all walks of life are so lucky.

      • I remember a conversation years ago where a guy was telling us about this woman he met in 7 Eleven. She chatted him up and asked him out, obviously into him. They went on a date, and ended up sleeping together.
        I jested to him that he might finally have a girlfriend now! Good for him, she seemed to really dig him. But he balked at this, saying she wasn't "girlfriend material". I asked why not?? Was she a jerk or something? No, she was really cool, but…
        He admitted that she was "too eager" to go out with him and had slept w him on the first date. "If a girl does that w you, she does it with everyone."
        I thought it was unfair. He didn't seem to pass the same judgement upon HIMSELF, and he did exactly the same as she did.

        >:(

        • this makes me so sad…

        • One of my brothers was (was!) such a guy.
          We had many years of butting heads over his use of the word "slut" to describe girls who "put out too easily" or girls who were too forward. He would often accost them or happily accept their offer – it would seem the exchanges were mutual. But after the fun was had, his attitude toward them was negative.

          Very much WTF!?

          (Today, he is wiser and more sex positive.)

          • Is a slut just a person who enjoys sex? What about a person who has no qualms about cheating because they've learned to give in to their sexual urges and can't be faithful?

        • FormerlyShyGuy says:

          I have thought what he told you "If a girl does that w you, she does it with everyone." For me it was exactly because I had passed judgement on myself that I was nothing special. They way you describe him acting I can relate that I would not think myself all that interesting that a woman would want me. The f@#ked on logic is that the only way he would be chosen so quickly is if she doesn't discriminate at all who she sleeps with.

          • There are lots of things I hope for in this brave new world of sexuality, but one of the main ones is that all the awesome men out there that don't appreciate themselves stop being crushed under the pressure of this weird sexuality as a status symbol model.

            I really hope so.

            Think about what the term "stud" really implies.

            It makes me sad.

            Hang in there ShyGuy

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            Yeah its weird thing were in pretty much every other aspect of my life I am a bold confident person, but I have always been bad with women "undesirable/not experienced enough". I am working on this belief, I have to be careful to fight it because when I am not fighting it, my lack of confidence seeps into other areas of life and I lose confidence there to.

          • Or she was really into him? Anyway, whatever. You are faulting women for your own insecurities, and probably missing a lot of chances. And this happens a lot.
            This is for all the guys coming here complaining that women don't pursue, because we are lazy and stuff.

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            I'm not faulting women, I am saying what I recognize as a problem I have had and I theorize the same problem in the individual from the comment above. You are right I am probably missing a lot of chances, but I know its my own fault.

            Yes I would like women to pursue me, but I know that if I don't fix whats going on in my head that I am not willing to pursue it would do no good for a woman to pursue me. I would likely retreat thinking its a joke/I am imagining things etc.

          • Sorry, I was a bit unfair.
            I have been in a few irl discussions like this lately, and that made me a bit quick in the answer. The thing is, sometimes, that guys with low self-esteem think having a partner would fix it, they just need a girlfriend!, when I often see the opposite happening. Not only their self-esteem remain low, the girls who are actually interested in them end up being treated badly because the guys can't understand how she would be attracted to them…

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            I have been that guy, I have just started date again recently and I am making very careful decisions to avoid repeating that behavior.

          • Good luck! I sincerely hope you can get over your insecurities and have an awesome life! :)

          • I have seen this in action! Supposedly "sweet, love-starved nerds who just want a girlfriend", then they get one and turn into ignoring, sullen, stingy (with affection), silent boyfriends. This does not bode well for your reputation in the friend circle, guys! Future love interests are going to run because the first girl will be all "yeah, I thought he was so sweet, but he was a TERRIBLE boyfriend".

          • As a guy I even find slut-shaming is so…. goddamn illogical even. I can't even comprehend the rationale behind it. If a woman enjoys sex and knows how to go after what she wants, so what?

            I scratch my head even further when I hear of us guys complaining that women are too hard to approach, but then complain that when a woman does approach she's too easy. I think sometimes it's just a case of "I wouldn't want to be in a club that would have me as a member".

            Now having said that, I do wonder if that high of a percentage of men REALLY would take random sex off some random woman on the street that just came up and asked point blank "Wanna go have sex with me now?". I'd certainly be thinking "ok this is so much out of the ordinary, I wonder what is really going on". Not to mention the concern about STDs, getting her pregnant and all that.

          • So yeah I do think even within the first study, a lot of dudes SAY they would do it, but I'm not sure how many would follow through. I couldn't say definitevly whether I would or not, but without any very special circumstances I actually don't think I would. NOT because I think "that woman is a slut" but because I think "this is almost too good to be true, I wonder if her boyfriend is waiting to smash me over the head and take my wallet…."

        • Sounds like he's not boyfriend material to me.

    • LazieLizzie says:

      In my experience, the most common slut-shamers are the ones who are most important in a woman's life and often the ones she can't escape: parents, grandparents, aunts, sisters, religious officials, friends, coworkers… If it was just a bunch of nameless nobodies doing the shaming, it probably wouldn't be a big deal. But when it's people that are important to you, that surround you everyday, it becomes difficult.

      • I think the family slut-shaming comes from a well meaning, if mistaken, place. Older female relatives have internalized that a woman's purity means her value, and perhaps they themselves had been targets of slut-shaming in their youths. But instead of realizing the whole thing was wrong, they think it is correct. So they are trying to "save" the younger women from it. My Catholic grandma is like this, and she sincerely believes all these things about women and sin because of her faith.

        (I'm talking about situations where there is no horrible abuse. Some people slut-shame because they just want to verbally beat down their kids.)

    • Slut shaming isn't always someone being evil and hateful. Sometimes it takes the form of your boyfriend being freaked out because he knows you've slept with substantially more people than he has. Some of the discussion elsewhere about being "trained" by an older, experienced woman has a whiff of it – at least insofar as it often assumes that the woman's usefulness ceases once the man has learned about sex and he can go on to pursue younger, less experienced women. Sometimes it's a guy friend of mine, who whined about how ironic it was that he'd liked his last one night stand more than any of his recent first dates and about what a shame it was. That one confused me until I realized he'd never even considered that he could hang out with her a second time (and, since he'd waited a couple of months, it probably wasn't a realistic possibilty by that point).

      These sorts of interactions make life harder. Dismissing the guys involved as bad people (and I truly don't think that they all are) doesn't change that. Some women deal with that set of difficulties. Others choose to forego casual sex and deal with the difficulties that come with that.

  20. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    Dr. Nerdlove, female sexuality is different from male sexuality and, on the whole, more contextually aroused and less potent. Some common facts: Women do not masturbate as much as men, do not proposition male prostitutes in the same extent that males go after female prostitutes. In most cases of a sexless marriage, it's because the woman doesn't want to have sex. And so on.

    This doesn't mean that women don't like sex — but that, for the most part, they are the ones that control whether or not sex happens, and that's a consequence of the greater power they wield in this sphere of human affairs due to them not being as interested in sex as men. If women were as interested in sex as men, truly, men would not be the ones having to ask chicks out.

    Your average human female aged 15 to 30 has untold number of men — perhaps a billion — who would sleep with her for the mere fact that she is a human female capable of being outlet for a primal need. Can the same be said for your average male? Sex is a female commodity that women almost always give out hesitantly and for various reasons beyond pleasure at the act itself (how many women, in marriages across the world, submit to their husbands regularly just to keep him happy rather than for their own sake?)

    • Wow…look at all those claims, unsupported by any sort of measured data, surely sadlonelyvirgin's unsupported assertions are more valuable than the contradictory actual experiences of people here AND the contradictory data gathered through the above mentioned surveys.

      • Yep. And definitely his suggestions like that women masturbate less and don't seek out prostitutes are totally because of less potent sexuality and not because, oh, I don't know, women are shamed for wanting to pleasure themselves and have casual sex while men are taught it's normal.

        • sadlonelyvirgin says:

          Why would women not masturbate in the privacy of their own homes when no one else would know? I mean get real. Fat shaming happens all the time and there are as many fat women as there fat men, perhaps more so. But women won't pleasure themselves as much as men because of shaming? Somehow, shaming didn't work to halt the explosion of women having children out of wedlock, but it holds them back from masturbating as much as men!

          It makes no sense.

          • Actually, yes, it does make sense. Shame is internal. It's not just fear of social consequences; it's about how people see themselves. It's totally possible to avoid something because it makes you feel ashamed, regardless of whether anyone else would ever know.

          • Um, many women do masturbate in the privacy of their own homes. The majority of them, in fact: http://ca.jezebel.com/5107639/92-of-women-masturb

            The reason it seems like so much less to you is partly because women are less likely to admit to it publicly (because of shaming) and partly because even if you're completely on your own, if you've been taught a behavior is shameful, that can still stop you from doing it because you'd feel ashamed of yourself even if no one else knows.

            Fat shaming doesn't stop people from being overweight because, shockingly, you can't control whether or not you're overweight as easily as you can control whether you touch your genitals. If being the ideal version of slim was as easy as refraining from playing with one's self for ten minutes every couple of days, I'm pretty sure there'd be a lot fewer overweight people.

            And finally, the reason women have children "out of wedlock" more now than they used to (I wouldn't call it an "explosion") isn't in spite of shaming, it's because the shaming has been reduced in the last several decades, so women no longer feel they have to marry a guy who accidentally knocks them up to avoid the communal uproar, or even necessarily have to marry a guy at all if they want to raise a family.

          • sadlonelyvirgin says:

            Women might find it easier to control not touching their genitals on account of not having as potent a desire for sexual release as men. This is why there aren't many women posting on the reddit's nofap forum.

          • So why has the number of women who'll admit to masturbating regularly gone up over the last fifty years (as noted in the article)? Does it make more sense to think that it's related to the increasing acceptance of women's sexuality, or that it's because women are suddenly biologically changing so that they do have more potent desires? I'm pretty sure evolution doesn't work that quickly.

          • sadlonelyvirgin says:

            Itdoesn't mean that the number of women who regularly masturbate and the frequency with which they do so matches that of men.

          • LazieLizzie says:

            If women didn't have libidos like men, then porn shops wouldn't be so desperate to have huge stocks of dildos and vibrators. Ever notice how most of the sex toys on the market are made for women?

          • "This is why there aren't many women posting on the reddit's nofap forum."

            Or maybe they have little interest in participating in a forum about not masturbating because they are happily masturbating? I really don't get your logic.

          • Or they'd rather be masturbating — or hell, having sex — than dealing with the morons on some areas of Reddit?

          • Sumiko Saulson says:

            You're mistaken. Men and women admit to masturbation almost equally – with 92% of women and 98% of men admitting to masturbation in more recent surveys. I suspect you must be looking at the old Kinsey reports. Back then only 50 to 70% of women ADMITTED to masturbating, but as you see it was self-reporting. Self-reporting means whether or not a truthful admission was made was a factor. Therefore it is unknown if women masturbate more now than we did in the 1960s and 1970s – it could be we are just less ashamed to admit to it now.

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            There's a whole lot of issues and misunderstood data in the Kinsey studies. For example: the idea women hit their sexual peak in their 30s. According to the studies, women reported having more orgasms and masturbating more than women in their teens and 20s. The assumption of the report was that this was women hitting their hormonal peak before menopause; they didn't stop to consider that in the time period that they were studying, women were socialized AGAINST sexual expression and thus did not explore or take ownership of their sexuality until later in life.Kind of like the Clark-Hatfield study in fact.

          • Right, and even with no shame or stigma attached, sometimes it just takes a woman that long to really understand her body.

            I've been masturbating since I can remember, but it took me most of my 20s to get to a place with my partner where I was having consistent, satisfying orgasms. It just took a lot of exploring and rethinking and patience.

          • Actually there was a new recent study. I was just watching a documentary on it. masturbation was distributed just about equally between men and women. I think it was through the university of Indiana? Hmm, I'd have to look that up.

          • Because when society tells you something about yourself, you internalize it. If it's bad for women to want sex, if that makes them sluts, then masturbation is something shameful that they shouldn't be doing. This is not that hard to figure out.

        • I really wish there could be an ad campaign for encouraging women to masturbate more. It bums me out that so many women are missing out on something so fun and awesome.

          I feel simililarly about video games.

          • No ad campaign, just more porn that doesn't insult and demean women.
            Same goes for video games.

          • Agreed. I'm a fan of kink.com, they use lots of different body types, and have very ethical treatment of models and hiring practices

          • thecynicalromantic says:

            Eh, you want to watch how unilaterally you define shit as "fun and awesome" for other people. Different people have different ideas of fun, and if you start telling other people to have your definition of fun, it can come off as pushy and self-absorbed.

            Speaking only for myself, I would murder and eat a raw kitten if it meant nobody would ever try to "encourage" me to masturbate OR play video games ever again.

          • Don't hurt the kittens!!!!!

          • Women are playing more games. But — speaking as a woman in the video game industry — a lot of games are pretty hostile in their portrayal of/attitudes toward women, which does tend to deter potential female players.

          • LazieLizzie says:

            It's not just the games themselves–it's also the fans. Make one mention of putting a fully-clothed woman in a game and suddenly it's, "WOMEN ARE TRYING TO RUIN VIDEO GAMES. IF THEY CAN'T TAKE THE HEAT THEY SHOULD GET BACK IN THE KITCHEN." Which is one of the biggest reasons why I decided not to go into the games industry, despite how much I love video games.

            But that's a different argument for a different blog post. ^^,

    • "This doesn't mean that women don't like sex — but that, for the most part, they are the ones that control whether or not sex happens, and that's a consequence of the greater power they wield in this sphere of human affairs due to them not being as interested in sex as men. If women were as interested in sex as men, truly, men would not be the ones having to ask chicks out. "

      Even if your observations were true, have you considered that the causation may be the other way around? That would explain why men who are able to get sex tend to care much less about it.

      • sadlonelyvirgin says:

        Nah, that sort of guy is the one who comes to care less about sex on account of getting it a lot.

        • Not even necessarily care less, but care differently. Psychologically, it seems wanting something that seems attainable and wanting something that seems less attainable lead to very different consequences.

  21. Body type hasn't changed? Bullshit.

  22. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    The reason women are labeled sluts is because it is the collective interest of women to make sex expensive. It is primarily women who are the most fierce in shaming women who sleep around, and this happens all across the world. Most women feel it in their bones to partake in slut shaming. Why? Because women feel that another woman who gives it out too easily takes away value from them, from what they have to offer to men. This is especially amplified when the so called "slut" is younger/prettier than the women shaming her.

    • LazieLizzie says:

      That's… not true at all. Women don't care about making sex expensive. Men (not all of them; just the bad ones) are the ones who care about how much a lay is "worth."

      I will admit that about 95% of the people who slut-shame are women (in my experience). But (again, in my experience) these women who do so are uncomfortable with themselves.

      Humans are highly competitive creatures. Society tells men and women they have to express this competition differently. Women are expected to do so through words. In order to gain an upper hand on women who are more successful, happier, or more confident than other women are, we hurt each other's feelings. It's more a matter of, "She's comfortable and confident in her own skin and I'm not, so I'm going to say a bunch of nasty things to make her feel badly about herself so that I can feel superior" than "She's lowering the property value of my body so I'm going to tell her off."

      I've done this myself in the past. It's not something I'm proud of. As a kid I was weird, quiet, lanky, unconfident, and wholly unnoticeable. Instead of admitting that the popular girls were simply more confident, more comfortable with themselves, better adjusted to society, and overall nicer people than me, I reduced their popularity to them being whores and sluts. As I grew up and became more comfortable with who I am, I realized how silly and petty that was, and I stopped.

      Now, again, this is my experience, and YMMV, but from what I've seen, women who are happy–truly happy–don't slut-shame other women.

    • Wow, glad to see another EXPERT in women here. I'm definitely learning a lot about MYSELF and what I want. You just keep writing. Don't listen to the foolish females who managed to comment here, they don't know what they want, they are merely female. Please, just keep at it.

    • There is definitely a relation between your name and your opinions, btw.

    • As much as I want to dropkick this dork in the face…I must fess up and say that I've noticed that too.

      Granted, in a HIGH SCHOOL setting is when it takes place the most, at least from what I've seen. When you actually, you know, grow the hell up, you tend to drop those bad habits. (sometimes….) But in an environment where the caddy, self-serving, bullying bullshit is status quo, there is a trend of shaming people for ANYTHING "unconventional", whether you be a nerd or overweight or a sexual female or a virginal male or anything that makes you "different" that makes high school hell for some people.
      I've seen it way too often; girls around my age slut shaming girls all the time in order to look better in the eyes some fucking guy, like "You don't want no slut like her! You want a GOOD girl like MEEE!"
      *puke*
      Basically using that whole Virgin/Whore idea, which I absolutely HATE….

      So I half agree with LazieLizzie and half agree with you…

      • It's bullying behavior to make people feel important. I disagree that it is somehow a collective female effort to keep sex as a currency. Mostly it's just to punch a girl in the most effective emotional soft spot.

        That's usually sex, because the perception is you won't get called out for calling a girl a slut or a whore. Hell The Scarlet Letter is required reading material in schools.

        • Yeah that’s why I added that ANYONE deemed unconventional tends to get shit, because some people are assholes like that. The whole currency thing is pretty flimsy if he’s trying to say it’s a female exclusive thing or something. That part ai disagree with as well. Folks like to flaunt their superiority over others anyway they can; sex is just one of those tools they use.

      • Women aren't saints. Just as many men use systems that oppress women to their own advantage, many women attempt to play the system to gain from it. It's human nature. You can pull examples of the same — collaboration with the system by the people most victimized by it — from any oppressive system in history.

        • And just be virtue of being female doesn't mean feminist theory comes any more easily to them.

          I had a lot of those slut-shaming attitudes toward other women, before I became feminist. But not every woman is open to the idea of feminism and a ton of them live their entire lives internalizing and policing this shit.

  23. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    Dr. Nerd Love, can you comment on this paper?
    http://www.csom.umn.edu/assets/71503.pdf

    • I will, every single one of those attitudes comes from thousands of years of men deciding that women could be "owned."

      There, done.

      The game has changed. Welcome to the modern world. We're just beginning to wake up.

  24. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    Who ever said that feminism/sexual revolution has been a boon for men when it comes to quantity of sex is wrong. It has been a been to some men, almost definitely, but it hasn't been a boon to American men as a whole. In short, there is no overcoming the primal fact that women, in their most fertile and beautiful years, are keen to share top males. All that sex is being had by a lot of women and SOME men.

    • Yes, it's so sad that women want to sleep with guys they actually find charming and attractive, rather than sharing their bodies with every man who wants a go. *rolls eyes*

      • These arguments come from entitled guys who scare off girls and blame every woman and all those *perceived* to be alpha males for their lack of a sex life.
        The only reason women can resist such a winning personality and inviting disposition is because we are hardwired to chase after superficial looks and social status. Clearly, if nature worked any other way us ladies would be fall all over ourselves for a chance to spend some intimate time with the sorts of guys who make these arguments – if not for these pesky lady-impulses to bang politicians and buy shoes, I might want to break me off a piece of sad-and-mopey, self-defeating booty.

        Truth time:
        No wants want to date an Eeyore.
        Especially a sexist, stubborn and misinformed Eeyore.

        • Seriously. Apparently it never occurred to him that a better plan for being successful with women than sitting around wishing history would reverse itself might be actually doing some of the things the guys who are successful are doing–like, oh, being charming and friendly with women and making them feel valued.

    • lol nope

    • NomnomChompsky says:

      But what are the characteristics of a "top" male? Are they genetic? Are these prime specimens breeding a bunch of "non-top" males? Why haven't we died out yet?

      Further more, if this is actually how it works, why the hell does anyone whine about it or complain? Wouldn't it be an accepted, understood part of human nature and culture? Wouldn't their be expressions to describe the phenomenon?

      …I don't think you know what you're talking about.

    • I'm sorry that women having basic human rights hasn't personally given you any additional sexual benefits. Because the liberation of half the human population is completely worthless unless an entitled asshat like you is getting some action. I sincerely hope that you do stay alone, because absolutely no woman should ever have to put up with your fucked up attitudes.

    • Yes, how terrible that women prefer to be with men with some attractive qualities instead of being obligated to have sex with men with nothing to offer. You're not owed a woman, dude. No one is owed a partner.

  25. I think a troll has wandered in to distract us from the collapse of Vic's arguments.

    • Dr_NerdLove says:

      Don't mistake disagreement (or wrong-headedness) for trolling. SadLonelyVirgin may be determined to be wrong and justify his misery by blaming others…But he's not a troll.

  26. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    There we go.

    Nothing wrong with women sharing "charming and attractive guys" amongst themselves while your average dude gets left with meager scraps, if that. So how has the sexual revolution/feminism been a boon for these men? At least before he'd most likely have married at a young age to a woman with limited sexual experience with whom he grew old. Now he has to spend his 20s sexually frustrated while just a few of his male peers are getting laid like tiles.

    • That's right, the real tragedy is the people who would have treated their wives/partners like crap/afterthoughts and can't get away with that any more because women are allowed to make choices… I feel so bad for them.

    • Anecdata for anecdata, ALL of my friends who are men are in relationships. They're also all in their 20s. They're nerds. But they're nice people, and funny and awesome. I don't think you understand how the world actually works.

    • LazieLizzie says:

      Again with the "men are the only ones who get the raw end of the deal" nonsense.

      For every man who was denied a woman because he doesn't have washboard abs, there's a woman who was denied a man because she has A-cup breasts. These are the "meager scraps" you so kindly refer to.

    • So what, the average dude getting "meager scraps" = the average women that aren't as conventionally attractive than the dimepieces you want, you imbecilic hypocrite?

      Go fuck yourself.

      • Meyer N. Gaines says:

        I don't think that's what he meant…he meant that all the women want a few top men, and all the men want a few top women. A woman would rather spend 5 minutes with Brad Pitt than 50 years with an average dude. A man would rather fap to Mila Kunis than have intercourse with a below-average woman.

        Misery for everyone!!!!

        • And yet somehow the majority of people manage to find someone who'll not only date them, but marry them, by the time they're 30. The situation is obviously not quite as horrific as you make out!

        • sadlonelyvirgin says:

          No Meyer. I don't make that claim about your average dude. In fact, I think men are far less discriminating unless they're already getting laid and can afford to pick and choose.

          • NomnomChompsky says:

            You think men are less shallow than women? You think that?

          • Well, see, the sad desperate men are kind enough to be willing to lower themselves to sleeping with women the other guys wouldn't, if it means they would at least get some sex. See how generous they are!

          • NomnomChompsky says:

            Why didn't anyone teach this to me during my education as a man? I've been fucking it up. :(

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            I don't buy the stereotype that men are shallower. The person doing the approaching, given a choice between several women to approach, will more often than not strike up conversation with the one that he finds most attractive — and attractiveness is subjective, subject to individual tastes — since he has no other basis for making a comparison at that point; he is, however, at liberty to strike up conversation with someone else if he's dissatisfied with the more attractive woman's personality. The fact that more men will try chatting up some women and not others under that scenario doesn't necessarily demonstrate shallowness. Women are equally capable of being shallow, brushing off men they find less attractive and flirting with men they find more attractive. One difference is that a guy, once brushed off, is expected to leave a woman alone more or less permanently lest he be perceived as a creep — a brush-off by a woman is typically done with prejudice, in the legal sense of the term — and women are obliged to flirt with men who've been ignoring them, whereas a woman who's not initially approached may easily be reconsidered if a guy isn't satisfied with his first choice. In terms of shallowness, I think men and women are *roughly* comparable, but given the social differences, it ends up sort of apples and oranges.

        • Yea, I think most women would actually pick a lifetime of relatively blissful commitment with an average dude, rather than 5 min with Brad Pitt any day. You can't even really do anything for 5 minutes.

    • 61% of men in the US have gotten married by the time they're 30: http://www.yourtango.com/200926789/study-most-ame

      So it sounds to me like the majority of men in their twenties are not only getting into romantic relationships (and presumably having sex in those relationships), but finding women who want to fully commit to them.

      The sexual revolution and feminism didn't happen for men's benefit. But they have benefited men because now you have a much better chance of finding out if you're sexually compatible with a woman before getting married (fewer and fewer women are waiting until marriage to have sex), and a much better chance of having an open and mutually pleasurable sex life with the women you date/marry. Are you seriously arguing that women should go back to being sexually repressed simply so you'd have a better chance of finding someone who'd settle for you? Why are your wants more important than women's?

      • OldBrownSquirrel says:

        For the record, I didn't marry before 30. Yeah, I know; it says as much about me as anything.

        • Well, if 61% are married by 30, then obviously 39% aren't. You're part of a pretty large minority!

          • Also, I don't think Mel_'s saying that every straight man who doesn't get married by 30 is someone that only a sexually repressed, feminism-less woman would be desperate enough to marry, so I don't think it says anything particular about you.

            There are plenty of very good reasons a person might not marry (date, have sex etc) by 30. …Reasons that are not "aahh it's so unfair to beta males why should women be allowed to sleep with some people and not others status scraps value argle blargle"

          • Yes, this! It was an argument against the idea that hardly any men in their 20s are getting female attention, not a suggestion that those who aren't married by then are somehow deficient.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            For the record, I wasn't a virgin when I married. The reason I didn't marry in my twenties was largely that the relationships I had in my teens and twenties didn't work out, for various reasons.

          • Even if you were, it wouldn't mean there had to be something wrong with you!

    • So your ideal partner is young and inexperienced, someone who cannot divorce you (reading that into your grow old comment, apologies if that's not a part of your picture perfect world) and has married you for financial security?
      Dude, that's not a relationship.

  27. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    The average dude getting meager scraps = not getting as much sex as they'd like with as many partners as they'd like, a promise of feminism/sexual revolution that only SOME men enjoy. Your average female has far more sexual value that your average male, something the average female leverage's quite powerfully in the heyday of their youthful splendor. The average male is then "settled for" by a woman with sagging looks. Basically, the average male is screwed by this picture:
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_JDF20fmuhLY/R-pHDL4uPjI

    • See my reply to your earlier comment, where I point out the marriage statistics that contradict your argument.

      And since when did feminism "promise" that guys would get "as much sex as they'd like with as many partners as they'd like"? I'm pretty sure the goal of feminism is for women to be treated as equal human beings, and to challenge the societal structures that treat them as inferior to men, not to ensure that men get lots of sex.

      • You are aware that this isn't making you look any better, right?

      • sadlonelyvirgin says:

        Please. The sexual revolution and feminism was, in part, sold to liberal men as equaling more sex for them. Anyway, I'm not arguing that most people don't end up getting married. They do. Women cannot sustain their leverage forever because they start losing their looks pretty rapidly in their late 20s and stop holding out hope for a top male who chooses them.

        • I don't think the early feminist activists were spending too much time worrying about what men thought about the movement–the whole point was to stop worrying so much about what men thought. And regardless of that, I suspect *has* meant more sex for men. The fact that it hasn't guaranteed you personally a sexual partner doesn't change that.

          It's interesting that you find it awful that women (according to you) only go after the best looking guys, but totally okay for you to see any woman in her late 20s or older as undesirable because she's "losing [her] looks"? How does that make sense? You want to be with attractive women, women want to be with attractive men. Sounds pretty equal to me.

          • sadlonelyvirgin says:

            It's a curve. A 28 year old woman is not as pretty as her 18 year old self, and so on. It doesn't mean that the 28 year old is sexually valueless. In fact, she still has more sexual value than her male counterpart, because it isn't just the men her own age who are competing for her but men considerably older as well.

          • I would think that anyone who is physically capable of having sex has at least some sexual value … whatever the hell that is.

          • That has nothing to do with what I said. You're complaining that women pursue the most attractive men rather than having sex with less attractive men too. And then you're complaining that when less attractive men get to have sex, it will be with less attractive women. So basically you're criticizing women for preferring to sleep with the most attractive men, while saying that *you're* justified in preferring to sleep with the most attractive women.

            Double standards, you're doing it right!

          • I am so much hotter than I was at 18, and I'm 35. That's a load of crap.

          • NomnomChompsky says:

            I'm really sick of hearing other guys talk about how anyone over the age of like 23 is some withered old hag. What the fuck is that? I'm 25 and I cannot think of a single person I think is less attractive now than they were in high school. I also find myself absolutely fawning over women who are all kinds of years older than me. Such insanity.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            Several of my friends from high school are dead. Withered? Quite possibly. I don't really want to find out.

          • It sounds like insanity only because you got it wrong.

            You are in your prime.

            Women start to leave their prime at 28.

            Have a nice day.

          • Yeah, at 18 I didn't even know what looked good on me as far as hairstyles, clothes, or even how I carried myself.

          • Same here. I was an absolute mess.

          • "A 28 year old woman is not as pretty as her 18 year old self, and so on."

            I don't think this is true, at least not as a general rule. Do you even know what a 28-year-old woman looks like?

          • SLV, are you young? Like under 21 young?

            I'll be 35 next year and let me tell you, women my own age are FREAKING HOT. Way hotter and more appealing than 18 year old high schoolers. There's a whole lot more that makes a woman attractive than youthfulness. Self-assuredness, flirtiness, etc, etc.

            I don't know where you are pulling these concrete notions of 'pretty' from, but I really do hope you're just young and naieve.

        • LazieLizzie says:

          Welp, guess I better hurry up and settle down with a man now. As soon as I hit 28 I'll be old and ugly as hell! Never mind the fact that I won't even be halfway through my life by then!

        • Actually, it's just that by their late 20s, most people have gotten over having a stupid, self-defeating adversarial concept of dating.

          • Actually, an adversarial concept of dating is somewhat realistic. But it needn't be stupid or self-defeating.

            What you have to understand is that s/he is not the adversary. The adversary is yourself. Especially if you are a man seeking a woman, you can sabotage your attractiveness in a million ways, most of which would never occur to you.

      • Call me Mister Male Privilege if you like, but I always thought the goal of feminism was for men AND women to be treated as equal human beings – not just to knock down women's barriers but leave men's standing because they rank too low on the oppression scale to care about.

        • I'm not sure how that contradicts what I said? SadLonelyVirgin isn't complaining about societal barriers that are preventing men from finding sexual partners–he's complaining that the reduced barriers for women are allowing them more choice in who they sleep with, and they're not choosing to sleep with him. I agree that the goal is for people of both genders to be treated equally, and many feminists have advocated for barriers men face to be knocked down too–e.g., for it to be considered acceptable for men to be stay at home dads, to pursue careers, wear clothes, and engage in activities previously stereotyped as "girly" without being shamed for it, etc. But if women aren't interested in sleeping with SLV personally, that's a personal problem. (We did discuss that making prostitution legal might help, in another thread, and many feminists advocate for that too, so I still don't see how it makes sense for him to blame feminism for his lack of female companionship.)

          If you think there is some sort of societal barrier in place that, if knocked down, would allow SLV to get all the sex he wants, I'd be very curious to hear what that is.

          • Myster Baad says:

            Hey, if I were that aware of societal barriers to this or that type of individual, I'd be too busy living life to come here and engage the issues. Sad but true, those who most need a clue in life are least likely to get clued.

    • "if meager scraps = not getting as much sex as they'd like with as many partners as they'd like" I'm totally getting meager scraps, and I'm a female, of course that might be because the people I meet are either in class or on the metro…

    • Sad Lonely Virgin

      Why dont you do an accurate assessment of your attractiveness and then approach the women who are your EQUALS in attractiveness for casual sex? Instead of expecting sex from good looking women and failing?

      For instance, say, if you are mediocre in looks and a bit chubby, why cant you obtain casual sex with a woman who is mediocre looking and a bit chubby as well ?

  28. This is saddest man in the world, you guys!

  29. sadlonelyvirgin says:

    Entertainer Johny Carson, through out his career, engaged in repeated serial monogamy and dominated the fertile years of several women. This is what many top males do, and, most likely, the next tier of top males/athletes and so on. It trickles down to us folk as well, with many women who no longer have to be married to become mothers often times all too eager to share "charismatic and attractive" males. Basically, the top men can now all the more get away with that sort of thing — which means that some men are almost definitely screwed when it comes to mating.

    • Thanks for educating us. I hope your theories work out well for you, SADLONELYVIRGIN. I'm sure your views on women have nothing to do with why you're not getting all the sex you think you deserve. Keep on doing what you're doing since you're so sure. Make your own blog about it, how's that? You sure do understand women, and you sure are eager to share your "knowledge"….
      I give up.

    • LazieLizzie says:

      I don't know why you're so obsessed with a woman's "fertile years." Kids suck. I'll be ecstatic when my fertile years are behind me.

      However, I'm willing to admit I'm an outlier in this scenario. It's still bizarre to me, though.

      • sadlonelyvirgin says:

        Because nature has made female physical beauty — what men are most visually responsive to — an indicator of female fertility. I wish it were otherwise but that's how it goes. And almost every woman shines physically at some point in this window unless she's medically obese (and even then there would be millions of men willing to sleep with her.)

        • LazieLizzie says:

          You do realize that women are fertile well into their forties, right? My mom had my sister at the age of 35. No complications with the pregnancy or the childbirth, and my sister is a totally healthy individual. My stepmother also had a child three years ago at the age of 36. Again, no complications in the pregnancy and my second sister is also a totally healthy individual.

          So if a woman is only desirable during her "fertile years" (which is a totally insulting viewpoint, by the way), then she shouldn't suddenly fall into disrepair in her late 20s. In fact, she should still be desirable until her late 40s, early 50s.

    • Women aren't commodities, we aren't to be measured by our "sexual value", we are people. We make individual decisions, and sorry if that decision is not always to have sex with YOU. Maybe some women do want to "share" very attractive males. For me personally, a man could look like a Greek god, but if I had to "share" him, I wouldn't sleep with him at all.

      Until you stop thinking of women simultaneously as products in a meat-market and cruel wardens keeping you locked in a prison of virginity, you probably won't have much luck. Because I can tell you that my greatest value is held inside my skull, not between my legs.

      • sadlonelyvirgin says:

        "Women aren't commodities, we aren't to be measured by our "sexual value", we are people. "

        No one is standing around objectively measuring this, but the behavior of people indicates that sex IS a commodity, that there is such a thing as "sexual value" and so on. The "we are people" = emptiest mantra of all time. Yes you are people, but different kind of people, with different biological drives compelling you in sex and mating.

        • "mating" lol.
          You don't see women as people. You are effectively "othering" women, and that's not going to help you find a partner. Even now you simply can't stop and listne to what WOMEN are telling you, you just keep trying to tell us how we're wrong in our views of ourselves and our sexualities. Unless you start actually seeing women as people JUST LIKE YOU, I can't say I wish you luck in your search for a sexual partner (or object, in your case).

        • If you're calling something a commodity, it means that it has some sort of objective value and that can be measured against exchanged for other commodities. It's a great model for sexual relationships, provided you're only into prostitutes.

        • Sex is NOT just a commodity. Sex is something different for each person. Hell, sex can be something different each TIME. And it's ironic that the person describing something that can be extraordinarily fulfilling and wonderful as a commodity could call something I say EMPTY.

        • And guess what?! I am in a relationship right now where I want sex more than my (male) partner. Do you know WHY that is? Because people can't really be separated into two categories, with all sexual behavior being of two basic types. Sometimes women want it more, sometimes men want it more. INDIVIDUALS, not genders. Just repeat that phrase to yourself ten times a day, and maybe one day you'll be able to women as more than just providers of a valuable (well depends how attractive she is) commodity.

        • Here's a blog post that does a good job narrating why sex economics is crap, and also not as fun or wonderful as love and sex can be. Careful, there's descriptions of sexytimes in there.
          http://pervocracy.blogspot.com/2011/10/economics-

          • Markets rule everything. Sex is not some special exception. To think otherwise is pure ego-assuaging reality denial.

          • Sure, markets rule, pimps, gold-diggers and the porn industry.

            That's about it.

          • If markets don't rule sex, why do highly attractive people tend to have sex with each other, rather than with ugly people?

            As a follow-up question, why, when you see couples with mismatched levels of physical attractiveness, does the mismatch virtually always run in one direction (plain or homely guy and gorgeous girl)?

          • Vic, now….don't freak out or anything, because this may be a scary concept for you but…..

            Have you ever considered that two people like each other because their PERSONALITIES match well with each other?

            VIC! VIC! BREATHE! I SEE YOU HYPERVENTILATING OVER THAT WORD! STAY WITH ME!!!

            Okay we good? Ok…so.
            Yeah. It really doesn't matter how much of a good looker you may be. If you have a shit personality, then it's all for fucking naught. With this whole "mismatched attractiveness" spew you're going on, maybe they're together because they, you know, LIKE each other on a deeper, more intimate level that just superficial crap that you and SLV have been constantly harping on.

            Again, I know you wouldn't know anything about that since you're the Shallow End Of The Pool Incarnate, but Johnny Depp nor Brad Pitt would be "getting any" if they acted like unlikeable douchebags, casual encounter or otherwise. I won't speak for women here, but I'm sure you could hear plenty of horror stories of someone that might have looked nice on the outside, but had the personality of a shoe (or a shoe that wanted to beat you in the face), so nothing became established between the two parties. Because at the end of the day, most NORMAL people understand that looks aren't forever, can change in an instant, and looks don't create bonds and memories that CAN last a lifetime.

            That's what you aren't getting. Sex is WAY too mathematical or scientific or something to you and you seem to be having such a hard time understanding how "conventionally unattractive" people could possible have a thing with the "conventionally attractive", as if you're thinking "OH NO 1 +1 = 3! This can't be right!" or as if you're trying to divide by zero or something. People are SO much more complicated and complex than that, and the way you try to simplify shit for whatever reason just comes across as dumb and assholeish. That's why I find it so hard to believe that "you're doing well for yourself" when you're so hellbent on proving that "OBJECTIFYING SEX WORKS! TRUST ME GUISE!"

            Unless you ARE one of those guys that convinces your women of your "your looks are equal to your property value on the imaginary 'market' " bullshit, whicccch would make you one of those domestic abuse dipshits who want easy control/dominance over others. Which is honestly the vibe I get from your incessant villianizations.

            In that case, snort fire ants as soon as humanly possible, please and thank you.

          • Exactly! I'm constantly (somewhat insultingly) surprising my VERY conventionally attractive roommate (who is a woman) with the guys I bring home. I am not always considered conventionally attractive, but occasionally I'm funny, and treat people well, so I attract people to me, of all attractiveness levels. And sometimes engaging people who you don't find attractive, can lead you to people who you do. Guys have guy friends, and girls have girl friends, and if you're a decent person, they might introduce you to them.

          • DUDE STOP MAKING ME SNORT MY TEA THROUGH MY NOSE.

          • Huffy name-calling aside, who am I "villainizing", exactly?

          • I adore this post by The Pervocracy. I'm not poly, but damn, I want something like that.
            Also, I don't think Vic and sadlonelyvirgin will get it. They just want a wet hole for the least trouble, and are sad women aren't throwing themselves at their feet for it. I must say I do not feel sorry they won't ever get to experience that awesome kind of sex. I feel sorry for their hypothetical partners, though.

          • That article is awesome and too true.

          • I'm certainly not complaining about my own situation. I do pretty well for myself. ;)

          • Now I'm feeling doubly sorry for your hypothetical partners. Also, why are you here reading this?

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            Also, why are you here reading this?

            Because I'm charming and delightful and he enjoys my scintillating writing style, clearly.There're plenty of regular readers (and commenters) who are in happy relationships who read the blog. It's not as though I put some sort of “Click here only if you're single” pop-up on the front page.

          • Yeah, sorry about that, you are definitely right. I was annoyed, and was rude.

          • There is actually a lot of good advice here. It's always good to hone your game. But sometime the good Dr, is, in my opinion, too reticent to speak hard truths about human nature in order to spare feelings.

          • Well, I bet we'd all be a lot more likely to accept your "hard truths" if you could actually provide some evidence of them. But the problem is you don't actually have any, isn't it, which is why you keep dodging that request?

          • Shhh! Don't break him out of delusional world he's in by actually making him back up anything he says!

          • What sweet little lies to help you sleep at night….how adorable.

        • So, I'm genuinely curious: what exactly are you hoping to get out of this conversation?

      • OldBrownSquirrel says:

        'For me personally, a man could look like a Greek god, but if I had to "share" him, I wouldn't sleep with him at all.'

        It's probably not quite what you had in mind, but I'm reminded of the difficulties that single parents experience when dating. Anyone who wants to date me is going to need to share me with my kids, and that's a deal-breaker for a lot of people.

        Also, on the subject of Greek gods, Hephaestus may have had a hot wife, but she had problems with fidelity. So even if one looks like a Greek god, in a polytheistic pantheon, there's still competition.

        • Yeah, I really only meant "share" as in, other women sleeping with him. I don't mind sharing him with friends, family members, and/or children. :) And yeah, Greek god in the physical beauty sense. None of those gods are good role models.

          • Supposedly, Hephaestus wasn't that hot. And his marriage to Aphrodite was arranged, she certainly wasn't into him.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            Oh, I never meant to imply that Hephaestus was hot!

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            Yeah, Hephaestus was a hunchback with a club-foot; he stood out amongst the physical perfection and beauty of the other gods – who were also vain self-absorbed little shits. This is part of why Aphrodite continually cuckolded him with Aries.

          • Yeah, none of the greek gods were big on fidelity, from what I gather… Zeus being the leader in that department.
            Also, Aphrodite was the goddess of love, beauty and stuff, right? She was also super mean and vain. Seems obvious it wouldn't work out in an arranged marriage with a hunchback jealous god of metalwork (? Is that it?). Apparently they weren't that wise too…

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Aphrodite was more the goddess of sex and passion. Marriage and family type love were more Hestia's thing.

          • Marriage was Hera…which is why she was so irritated with Zeus. Hestia was the hearth and home.

          • Yeah, that's the kind of "love" I was talking about. I was thinking maybe marriage wasn't so much equated with love in ancient greece? I'm not sure, but that's the impression I get.

        • Wasn't Hephaestus also really dim-witted?

          • Anonyleast says:

            I wouldn't think so. He tricked Aphrodite and Ares multiple times. His physical imperfections came from his work as a smith, which back when his mythos was created meant working with bronze. When tin wasn't available (which was common) smiths would alloy copper with arsenic to create bronze, which led to them having arsenic poisoning pretty consistently. Most European smith-gods from the Bronze Age had physical descriptions related to long periods of arsenic poisoning.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            If I remember right, his physical perfection was a bit more complicated. Zeus created Athena on his own. She sprang fully, perfectly formed from his head. So Hera, always jealous, figured she could do the same thing just as well. She made Hephaestus but being "just a woman" it didn't work out as well.

          • Anonyleast says:

            True for the mythos explanation. I went all anthropological explanation for why the smith god had to be imperfect.

        • Hephaestus' physical descriptions don't exactly fit what we think of when we say someone looks like a Greek god. Plus, it was an arranged marriage. I'd blame that less on the problem of competition and more on the problem of being forced to marry someone.

    • Sounds like you've got this whole sex thing all figured out. Why are you here?

    • OldBrownSquirrel says:

      For every Johnny Carson or Mickey Rooney, there are thousands of men in prisons not getting much opposite-sex action, and the prison population is lopsided toward men. Similarly, there are plenty of single men in the military putting off settling down and not locally available for dating. Granted, there are women in prison and in the military, but we're talking about statistics here. And for a variety of reasons, young men have a higher death rate at this point in history than young women. If anything, even taking into account powerful men with dedicated mistresses and serial monogamists with trophy wives, there's generally a shortage of available men, and that's especially pronounced for men in their twenties.

    • But seriously, are you a robot?

      Don't worry, the time may come when you can grasp the human concept of "emotions."

    • Actually, I'm curious. Sadlonelyvirgin, if you're right and this is such a problem, what do you propose is a reasonable solution? I don't understand what it is you want to happen exactly. Surely you're not suggesting that the world would be a better place if women repressed their desires and made themselves sleep with men they'd not really attracted to? Is that what you really want–for women to sleep with you not because they like you or find you appealing, but out of pity?

      • sadlonelyvirgin says:

        Either return to what you describe or legalize prostitution. Make it easy for men who are not in relationships to buy sex.

        • I have no problem with your second suggestion, but in regards to the first, I find it very sad that you think your desire to have women sleep with you is more important than women having the freedom to sleep with the people of their choice.

          Can you at least see that what you're asking for is to go back to women having fewer rights and options than men? Technically, right now the balance is somewhat equal. (Not totally, because many women still don't feel completely comfortable expressing their sexual desires.) People (men and women) who are confident enough to approach and/or conventionally attractive enough be appealing to the opposite sex find sexual partners fairly easily. People (men and women) who aren't confident or conventionally attractive enough have trouble finding sexual partners. The way it was before, women were at a disadvantage. If a woman wasn't conventionally attractive, she had to just wait around hoping some guy would finally notice her and settle for whichever guy finally did (if any). All that's happened is women are now on similar footing–they can choose to go after guys and try to catch their attention rather than waiting, just like you can choose to either wait around for a woman to come after you or go after them yourself.

          And before you say that the unattractive woman could theoretically still find more men who'd sleep with her than the unattractive man, consider that it really doesn't matter how many men would sleep with that woman. What matters is whether the men *she wants to sleep with* reciprocate. If no guys that she wants to sleep with want to sleep with her, then she's in the exact same position as a guy who can't find a sexual partner he wants to have sex with. Having sex with someone you aren't actually attracted to isn't particularly enjoyable, so what good would it do her that she could?

          • @Mel

            I have a problem with the second suggestion just as much as the first (for the reasons you went into) because it's just so pathetically self-defeating and downright lazy. If the name alone didn't give it away, sadlonelyvirgin is a quitter at life that wants all of life's hardships easily handled and wants all the answers handed to him in his lap and wants everyone else to do the hard work for him/change for him so he doesn't have to. HE doesn't have to get off his ass and make any attempts to improve his way of life. It's EVERYONE ELSE'S fault that he isn't happy, so if THEY change so he doesn't have to, life would be better.

            Adapt or die, junior. Life ain't easy, so you better start dealing with it. You can only play the blame game for so long before you really gotta go "Maybe it's something I'M doing wrong…." The longer you throw yourself this pity party, the quicker life is just going to pass you by and the more miserable you're going to be. You gotta ask yourself to you really want to LIVE, or do you merely want to exist? Right now all you seem to want to do is that latter.

          • sadlonelyvirgin says:

            Look, not to be callous, but strictly enforced monogamy was a solution to curtail the baser nature of both men and women: it curtailed men's ability to act out on their desire for variety and it limited women's tendency towards hypergamy. It divided up the goods (female sex) pretty evenly so that no man could horde it. It ensured that women and men married young, so that the man sexually and emotionally bonded with a woman in her prime years of fertility as to imprint this period of her life on his mind, thereby making him less bothered by her inevitability sagging looks. It made the woman instinctively loyal to her husband by limiting her exposure to different cocks. If we can't return to that — what was a just bargain that Western civilization owes a lot to — then it only makes sense to make prostitution legal as to allow men who can't get relationships to experience sexual pleasures with human females, perhaps the greatest pleasure our nervous systems allow us to enjoy (or so said Steven Pinker.) You can't just give lip service to this. It would, in fact, be a tremendously freeing thing for American males.

            "And before you say that the unattractive woman could theoretically still find more men who'd sleep with her than the unattractive man, consider that it really doesn't matter how many men would sleep with that woman. What matters is whether the men *she wants to sleep with* reciprocate. If no guys that she wants to sleep with want to sleep with her, then she's in the exact same position as a guy who can't find a sexual partner he wants to have sex with. Having sex with someone you aren't actually attracted to isn't particularly enjoyable, so what good would it do her that she could? "

            The answer is obvious: She shouldn't be so choosy. She should pick the best she can from that horde of men who would sleep with her. If only unattractive men had her options in terms of numbers!

          • Seriously, the goods? You have got to be kidding me!

            Why don't we just go all medieval and have fathers sell their daughters off for political power again. That all worked out really well. This is BS. Why don't you trot on back to the middle ages, or move to Nevada.

            My God.

            And you wonder why sex is so hard to get?

            Look at what your ATTITUDE TOWARD WOMEN is doing for you here.

            Maybe sex wouldn't be so hard to come by if ya tweaked it a bit. You have real women here telling you very distinctly what your problem is, and it has NOTHING to do with your physical body.

            Grow up.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Just out of curiosity, what does Nevada hny ave to do with any of this?

          • Camelopardalis says:

            Prostitution is legal in certain counties.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            And that's a bad thing?

          • It's not a bad thing. I was just saying if he's whining about "Why isn't prostitution legal boo hoo," he can move to a place where it is.

          • Okay, here are a few quotes that made me realize that you aren't just a sad, lonely virgin, you're also a horrific misogynist.

            "Not to be callous"

            -"Not to be racist." "Not to be homophobic." "Not to be an asshole."

            "It divided up the goods (female sex) pretty evenly so that no man could horde it"

            -WHAT?! We are not "THE GOODS".

            "curtail the baser nature of both men and women"

            -Yes, because sex and love are horribly base, and freedom is AWFUL.

            " thereby making him less bothered by her inevitability sagging looks"

            -Or maybe the man may, oh I don't know, LOVE HER? If that's the case, her "sagging looks" (*twitch*) wouldn't matter at all.

            "It made the woman instinctively loyal to her husband by limiting her exposure to different cocks."

            -My god. Did you know that one of the signs of spousal abuse is cutting them off from other people?

            "allow men who can't get relationships to experience sexual pleasures with human females"

            -Human. Females. Wow.

            "be a tremendously freeing thing for American males."

            -All those poor oppressed American males.

            So what you're saying is this: "My desire to place my penis into a human female is FAR more important than that female's desire to make her own choices regarding the path of not only her sexuality, but also her entire LIFE." That is just CHARMING.

          • LazieLizzie says:

            "'Not to be callous'

            -'Not to be racist.' 'Not to be homophobic.' 'Not to be an asshole.'"

            "Why is it that whenever someone says, 'With all due respect,' they really mean, 'Kiss my ass'?"

            I found that relevant. ^^,

          • Seriously, fuck this guy. Every time I read something he writes I throw up in my mouth a little.

          • BritterSweet says:

            "Seriously, fuck this guy."

            Eww! Not with a 10-foot cactus.

          • Oh, god! I didn't mean literally!!!!!! What have I said?!!!! Now I've made myself throw up!

          • All of these cocks! They are everywhere! It's so overwhelming! I wish I had a more restrictive societal structure to limit my exposure to cocks! Ah! I just got slapped in the face with a cock! Get it away!

          • Anonyleast says:

            Maybe there's a lot of Vegetas out there?
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wlf0PBO1ed0

          • OMG! LMAO! Wait, is that Dragonball Z? Isn't that a kids' show? (I apologize, I'm not really up on all the different animes, that isn't my particular geek interest)

          • Anonyleast says:

            That was an "abridged" version of Dragonball Z. Basically the same story, but a parody of the characters and the holes in the plot.

          • x_Sanguine_8 says:

            Vegeta… Vegeeeeeeeeeetaaaaaaa….

            I'm haunting you.

          • As a het male, I don't see many cocks, but I do encounter a helluva lot of dicks.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Unattractive men do indeed have her options in terms of numbers. They can not be choosy, pick the best they can from the hoard of women that would sleep with him. Just lower your standards far enough and someone will sleep with you. Or are women supposed to lower their standards so guys don't have to?

          • For someone who felt the need to give me a history "lesson", you clearly know very little about human history.

            Strictly enforced monogamy has rarely (never?) been strictly enforced for both men and women. In most (all?) historical Western civilizations, it was seen as totally normal and even encouraged for men to pursue women for sex before they got married, and often to continue to do so after they got married. Many societies had an unspoken policy to look the other way when it came to male infidelity–it was seen as a normal for a man to want female sexual company other than his wife. Women, on the other hand, were punished for sexual activity before marriage and any dalliance after they were married was grounds for immediate divorce and sometimes even execution.

            So basically men got to do pretty much whatever they wanted (sexually), and women got to be with only the one guy their entire life–a guy she often had very little choice in. (Men may not have gotten to chose their wives all the time, but generally they could at least choose their side dalliances.) That's hardly some sort of equal sacrifice on both sides.

            Nor do I see any reason to believe that this social structure has contributed so greatly to the accomplishments of Western civilization. Just because the two things existed at the same time doesn't mean one caused the other. You might as well argue that we owe the invention of paper to the fact that women in China bound their feet.

            Finally, I said I agree that prostitution should be legal. And I do, and when the subject comes up I say so. I'm not sure why you feel the need to continue arguing with me about something I agreed with. It seems like it's more important to you to make everything I say wrong rather than to have an actual discussion.

            "The answer is obvious: She shouldn't be so choosy. She should pick the best she can from that horde of men who would sleep with her. If only unattractive men had her options in terms of numbers!"

            Do you really see a "horde" of men following around every single woman? I, personally, am not hideously ugly, and yet I've never been propositioned for sex (by someone I wasn't already dating), and rarely have guys show any interest in me at all. There are lots of women in the same position. They don't have a bunch of guys already there to pick from. What, is they supposed to put up a billboard ad advertising their availability? I'd imagine the kind of guys that would attract are the kind of guys who'd be thinking, "Awesome, a woman so desperate she's begging for men! I won't have to work hard at all to sleep with her!" Which are probably not the kind of guys who are going to be at all concerned about getting her off, so she's not actually likely to enjoy the sex anyway. Bringing us back to one of the original points of the article. Women are more choosy about who they sleep with (in part) because they can't just assume any random guy who'll happily have sex with her will take the time and energy to make sure she enjoys the experience at all.

            But then, all that seems to matter to you is that some women are made available to you, for your sexual use. And that attitude, as others have pointed out, is probably one of the main reasons you *aren't* finding women want to be with you. Having one's wants and agency seen as a problem is hardly a turn on.

          • Camelopardalis says:

            WHERE IS MY HORDE? I was told I get a horde. :)

          • I want Orcs! My life for Nerzhuul!

          • "What, is they supposed to put up a billboard ad advertising their availability? I'd imagine the kind of guys that would attract are the kind of guys who'd be thinking, "Awesome, a woman so desperate she's begging for men! I won't have to work hard at all to sleep with her!" Which are probably not the kind of guys who are going to be at all concerned about getting her off, so she's not actually likely to enjoy the sex anyway."

            I'm not so sure about this. Not all effort is the same. I could imagine a lot of people being willing to put in a lot of effort to make someone else feel good, but unwilling to put a lot of effort into things that are likely to hurt someone else.

          • I don't understand what you're saying. My point was that most guys who'd be excited to find a "desperate" woman are guys who prefer not to put effort into making someone else feel good. If they're happy not to have to put in the "work" of making themselves attractive to a woman through conversation, flirting, etc.–making her feel good about them so she'll choose them as a partner–then I see no reason to believe they'd suddenly think it's important that she feels good (as opposed to just going along with it) once they've gotten a free pass into her bed. Making sure the woman has a good time too is quite a bit more "work" than just making sure you have a good time, and they've already shown themselves as adverse to "work". Where's the incentive for them to put in that effort when they're getting to sleep with her regardless?

            None of which has anything to do with putting effort into things that are likely to hurt someone…

          • "Where's the incentive for them to put in that effort when they're getting to sleep with her regardless?"

            Isn't that effort kind of the point? Masturbation feels good too and takes even less effort. But sharing a good time with someone is something you cannot do alone.

            One of the most frequent complaints that women seem to have is how annoying and hurtful it is to constantly have people take an interest in them, especially when it's the wrong people. (To be clear, a lot of women do not have this complaint, but many do). I have almost never seen a woman complain that their partner pays too much attention to their feelings and makes to much of an effort to make everything enjoyable for her. (The only exception are women who reported feeling pressured to perform when their partner gave it so much effort, and women who observed that partners that cared about their enjoyment a lot were often unwilling or unable to do it rough and hard even when specifically asked. I'm not quite sure what to make of this, but these seem like problems that can be handled with open communication).

          • "Isn't that effort kind of the point? Masturbation feels good too and takes even less effort. But sharing a good time with someone is something you cannot do alone."

            Yes, but if the guy isn't interested in "sharing a good time with someone", just having the experience of getting to have sex with a woman instead of his hand (which–according to every guy I've heard talk on the subject–is pretty much always going to feel better for him, regardless of how much the woman's enjoying it), then he's only going to put in as much effort as is needed to make *himself* feel good, which doesn't by any means guarantee she will. Guys who are interested in actually having a good time with someone, where both people are enjoying the experience, I don't think are very likely to see desperation as an appealing quality in a partner. Those guys would *want* to get to chat and flirt with the person first, and feel they're hooking up out out of mutual attraction, not be looking for the quickest and easiest possible way into any halfway-decent looking woman's bed.

            And I've never seen a woman complain that having a guy strike up a friendly conversation with her is "hurtful". What bothers most women is when guys are obviously not really interested in being friendly or having a good time flirting and seeing if the attraction's there, just looking to try to get her into bed ASAP. Which again, shows an unwillingness to put any effort into making sure the other person's happy. They also are bothered by guys who won't take no for an answer and keep badgering them, which is the guy making an effort, but only on his own behalf–he's again showing he doesn't care how *she* feels about the interaction. Those things are hurtful precisely because they're indications that the guy doesn't see the woman as a human being with her own wants and desires, but as an object for him to use for his own pleasure.

            Any guy who decides he's never going to talk to women because OMG women are so judgmental and mean and they might accuse him of hurting them by simply saying hello, obviously has a lot of negative ideas about women already, which again, doesn't suggest he's going to be very considerate to a woman he takes to bed.

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            Next time you want to know why women don't seem to like you?This is why.

          • I'm really starting to think that we're feeding a troll here. A very good troll in the classic sense of what troll used to mean.

          • Camelopardalis says:

            Huh. What happens when women become bothered by mens' sagging, uh, "looks"?

          • Wow. This is gross. You call women "goods" and you still have to think up a ridiculous pseudo-biological/evolutionist/historical explanation as to why no one wants to touch you.
            Actually, this seems to happen a lot: you have a perfectly logical explanation as to why women do or don't do certain things, but guys like this still prefer to believe it's because of our "lizard brains", or evolution, or cavepeople….

        • I…honestly don't know whether to laugh or facepalm. Possibly both.

          Jesus fucking Christ, just take NO responsibility for yourself, huh? That's what you want to happen. That's what you want, for it to be EASY.

          I don't even. Words can't even.

  30. Sumiko Saulson says:

    The article says "It came down to two issues: personal safety and potential sexual prowess in the proposer." Let's not forget the first part of that equation: a one-sentence introduction from a stranger consisting of "do you want to have sex?" is not really enough to determine if this guy is a serial-killing Ted Bundy type or maybe just kind of rapey. Actually, when I read that, I was like, "duh". Isn't it obvious personal safety is an issue?

    • OldBrownSquirrel says:

      I'd be inclined to suspect that someone approaching strangers on the street and asking them for sex without further introduction was bipolar and poorly medicated.

      • alright… insulting to the mentally ill there.

        • OldBrownSquirrel says:

          "To be classed as a manic episode, while the disturbed mood is present at least three … of the following must have been consistently prominent: grand or extravagant style, or expanded self-esteem; … over indulgence in enjoyable behaviors with high risk of a negative outcome (e.g., … sexual adventures …)."

          That's two of three criteria in one action, enough for a hunch if not a firm diagnosis. And that far beyond normal behavior? Yeah, sounds pathological. Granted, there are other possible causes (e.g. drugs), but with other people suggesting "psycho killer", I don't think my theory was out of line.

          • sorry, just felt personally insulted without really thinking about it, after sitting down for a little while I realized I just kinda typed without thinking. Sometimes people have ideas that aren't true, and although that specifically hasn't been how it's worked for me, I do realize that hypersexuality can be a part of bipolar. again, sorry.

          • OldBrownSquirrel says:

            Thanks.

    • I've been following discussion on Doc's post over at Good Men Project, and discussion on a piece there by Lori Ann Lothian about sexual polarity. Q&D, she says a lot of women need a man to be traditionally commanding and prepared to "take" her to feel turned on.

      Put that thought together with the need for safety and it could be that a modern, socialized, educated woman needs a very delicate balance of contradictions in a man if she is to feel sexually free and fulfilled.

      I phrase it this way: a man can hook up with a 5 on the looks/fun scale and not feel regret, but a woman might need a 9 or 10 on the "balance" scale: safe/dangerous, caring/commanding, tender/hard.

    • The sexual prowess of the proposer is an equally important issue. Even if your personal safety is guaranteed, you wont have casual sex if man is not attractive enough and doesnt meet your standards. Of the men you come across, or the men who approach you, you might find very few of them good looking and charming enough to be considered for casual sex.

      • Dr_NerdLove says:

        How strange. You seem to be posting from the exact same IP address as Nigel and your email address is almost exactly the same except for a single digit. What a staggering coincidence.Or, y'know. A sock-puppet account. Which we don't allow here.

  31. thecynicalromantic says:

    The proposed scenario of the Clark-Hatfield study is not one that happens in real life; 99% of the population, including PUAs don't cold-approach in the middle of the day and say "Hey, want to go back to my place and fuck" right off the bat to a total stranger and expect success.

    I was going to disagree with this sentence until I got to "and expect success". On that count, you are right.

    The fact is, while women going up to men randomly in the middle of the day and stone cold propositioning the with no preamble might be a thing that only happens in porn for men, for women in urban areas, stuff like this DOES actually happen. It is part of the spectrum of street harassment that we put up with on a regular basis, somewhere in between getting wolf-whistled and having dudes drive slowly down the street next to you for three blocks while you're walking. Most of the dudes doing it are either twice our age or appear to be junkies or are otherwise sketchy-looking already, but even if they aren't, it is sketchy enough behavior that any dude engaging in it automatically seems sketchy.

    As far as I know, the dudes who do this don't expect to get laid; they expect to make us uncomfortable. (It often works, but we try not to let them know that.)

    I ignore preamble-free sexual comments from men the same way I ignore panhandlers and leaflet-handers-out and the music coming from other people's cars and the smells of car exhaust and cigarette smoke–my options are to deal with it or move out of the city, and I don't want to move out of the city.

  32. Sheesh, Dr. Nerdlove,

    I'm getting absolutely no work done tonight, and it is all your fault. How dare you be such a captivating and interesting blogger who cultivates an intelligent community engaged in interesting debates!

    This will go on all weekend now.

    How dare you sir!

    There, I'm blogger shaming. :)

  33. No, really, when are you writing the book on all of this, because I want to buy it and keep it for my son. You've got one hell of a platform.

  34. "The better the lay the man was perceived to be, the more receptive the women were to the possibility of a fling."

    I'd like to point out that being a good dancer will increase the perception that you are a "good lay". You don't have to be "dancing with the stars" good. Just get on the floor, show her that you have a sense of rhythm (important for sex) and that you can pay attention and read her body language cues to successfully move with her and not step on her feet, ect. Showing that you can pay attention to her reactions and movements and react accordingly is WAY important for sex. She'll probably be thinking "damn, he's hot!" and not "based on his dancing skill, I think he would be quite capable of bringing me to orgasm successfully." But that's because she's human and not Vulcan. :)

    • Dr_NerdLove says:

      Fortunately, science has solved the issue of “the sexiest way for guys to dance” .http://www.cracked.com/article_20098_5-lifes-most-mundane-problems-solved-with-math.html

    • At least from personal experience, I'm going to have strongly disagree with this. I dance as a hobby and take it pretty seriously. I even compete. While it improved my social life quite a bit, it hasn't done that much for my romance or sex life, at least not directly. As far as I can tell, women still don't see me as a good lay or catch even though they life dancing with me.

      • Hey – I also have started to dance salsa about half a year ago. You should try and see the positive side of things and take your progress at small chunks at a time, instead of constantly reminding yourself that you still haven't reached specific goal X. Even though I haven't seen it improve my romantic or sex life just yet (just like you LeeEsq) – I do feel like it's something that's pushing me in the right direction. I still remember after dancing with this girl, she stepped aside and made sure I can hear her say to her friend: "You should totally dance with him, he is a wonderful dancer!" and just to be clear, I'm no pro dancer – I just started the "medium difficulty level" group (my dance group has lessons divided according to a certain dancing difficulty and complexity level). To me, that is immensely satisfying – because I see it as a value I am adding to myself as a person. My social life had improved dramatically ever since I started dancing. Now I just need to keep on improving other aspects of my life (mostly self-confidence) and hopefully I should be able to reap the benefits of these improvements in the romantic department soon.

        So keep positive my friend and just try and ENJOY the dance itself – that's what I focus on and frankly, I've been a much happier person ever since :-)

      • I disagree too. My husband can't dance worth shit, but he is AWESOME in bed. Seriously.

    • Camelopardalis says:

      I have no idea where you get this from, but as a social dancer, I can spot the guys who use the dance scene to get laid a mile away, and I avoid them.

      • I also find that hook-ups are not really that common in the social dance seen. I maybe met a handful of couples that met while taking lessons at a dance studio. A surprising number of people in the dance scene are seeing people who don't dance at all. Its kind of like how people try to avoid relationships with people at work. If something goes wrong and the relationship ends, you're still going to have to see that person a lot at the studio. This could be awkward.

    • I hope this isn't true, because I am not a fan of dancing. I really don't get why society expects every single person to enjoy it and be good at it.

      • Since when does society expect everybody to enjoy it and be good at it? Before WWII, nearly everybody knew how to dance something. The older people how to waltz, the younger people foxtrot and swing. Knowing how to dance was a pretty common skill, something everybody had to know if they wanted to date and be married with some exceptions. After WWII, knowledge of how to dance decreased rapidly.* The number people who know even basic partner is a fraction of what it once was. Thats why we have jokes about white men dancing but if you ever look at old movies, you'll realize that white men once knew how to dance. The free style dancing done know would be laughed at not so long ago.

        *There seems to be an inverse relationship between the amount of sexual activity allowed before marriage and how widespread knowledge of dancing is. The more sexual activity that is socially permissible before marriage, the more knowledge of dance decreases. I consider this to be one of the bad parts of the Sexual Revolution.

        • I also want to know why you aren't a fan of dancing? Its one of the most beautiful and fun things out there. Whats wrong with whirling waltzes, sexy salsas, and swinging swings (best I could do)? It takes a bit of work to get really good at it but so does most things that are worth it. People should dance more. Dancing should be made part of school curriculums again. The decline of partner dancing and the rise of free style is a travesty.

          • "Since when does society expect everybody to enjoy it and be good at it?"
            "Before WWII, nearly everybody knew how to dance something."

            You sort of answered your own question. As for why I don't like it, it's the same reason some people don't like playing soccer. I'm not very good at it, and it's not very fun to do something like that when everyone around you actually is somewhat competent at it. Sure, I could learn, but I'd rather spend my time elsewhere. Unfortunately, most big events that people my age go to don't revolve around playing soccer (no one's like "hey, let's go to that new club and get drunk and play soccer" which, incidentally, is something I would totally be interested in).

          • I was horrible at dance when I first started. I could not tell my left fort from my right foot, which is kind of an important concept in dance. Through hard work, I was able to get it and now compete. It takes work but its very enjoyable once you get it.

          • I hated gym class with the fiery passion of a thousand suns–except for the yearly unit on square dancing. I wasn't much better at it than any of the other units, but I just found it to be so much fun. And dance encompasses both physical activity and the arts, which are two areas that many (if not most) kids need more of.

            I also think partner dancing is a completely different animal than purely social dancing like one would find at a school dance or a club, and many people (like me) who dislike the one might actually find they enjoy the other. For one thing, it seems like there's potentially much less awkwardness. I mean, the steps are already made up for you! :)

          • Gym class in my high school was a joke. My school let us hang out and socialize during it. I wasn't that athletic but I didn't mind gym in elementary school or middle school because in elementary school we got to play dodge ball and run obstacle courses. Middle school gym had a lot of swimming and I loved getting wet.

          • Eh, I don't enjoy watching it or doing it. And as someone who doesn't like being touched by people I don't know well and did go to a school that had it as part of the curriculum, it was deeply unpleasant.

        • You have a good historical point here, but please, don't try to relate to people with any social observations before the 1950s. We're a culture with a short memory.

      • Camelopardalis says:

        Eh, if you don't like it, you don't like it. A lot of guys seem to get into social dance b/c it places them in contact with women. Many of those guys also end up enjoying it and getting quite good at, even if that wasn't the initial motivation. However, one of the rules of adulthood is that just because a lot of people like something doesn't mean you will.

        Also, the type of woman who you are most likely to attract by being a good dancer is a woman who likes to dance. Unless this quality is in your top 20, it is completely ok not to learn to dance in order to attract women.

        • Dancing is also a good form of exercise for people bored by more traditional exercise. That was one of my main motivations, it got me in shape. Right now I'm getting ready for my second competition.

          • I love dancing, and I'm with you, Lee. I am just glad to see the "Ewwww it's girly" stigma of social dancing starting to decrease.

            I'm pretty sure this is directly a result of the number of women who are vocally in lust with Maksim Chmerkovskiy.

        • Anonyleast says:

          I personally didn't like dancing for a long time because it got associated in my head with the painfully awkward years I spent as a wallflower at middle school and high school dances because no one I asked would dance with me.

    • Dancing is part of it, I suppose. More importantly – I think a man must be physical and embodied in a way a woman doesn't necessarily have to be. He has to live fully in his body, not just use it as a clothes rack or a life support system for his personality.

      Personality can be sexy, but it's gotta have the bod upfront or it'll never get thru a woman's defensive line. You don't have to be a perfect physical specimen, but you do have to be physical.

  35. This is bit off topic but since this thread is about what people are looking for in relationships and sex, I need help on a bit of quandary. What I think I like, based on looking at how other couples and my own fantasies, is a playful, affectionate spontaneity in a relationship. There was a woman I liked who rejected me because she already had a boyfriend. Since I can't avoid the two of them without really changing my life, I get to see how the interact with each other and I really like the way she acts around him. She lights up when she sees him. Once she literally pranced when she saw him. There relationship is filled with a lot of playful touching but at the same time isn't really overly annoying make out sessions in public. I really like this, this is what I'm looking for in relationship. I really, really like this sort of playfulness.

    The quandary is that the women who were willing to go on dates with me and probably enter into a relationship with me do not really have a personality thats fits this sort of behavior. Its not that they were overly serious or that they didn't have a fun side but I can't imagine that this sort of playful affection coming from anybody of them for a variety of different reasons. I can safely say that none of them would ever prance towards any boyfriend or husband. It wouldn't be naturally, if they did it it would come off as a sort of an act. So if the type of women that will date me aren't the types of women that show affection the way I like it, what can I do?

    • I'd say it's probably how you're coming accross? Maybe you are somewhat serious, or something. Would you prance towards your girlfriend? I'm not saying you're doing something wrong, but maybe you give off a different impression than what you'd like, or maybe what you're really like inside. Ask someone you trust how they perceive you. Maybe it'll help.
      I have this sort of problem, since I'm very introverted and shy, I come accross as someone who is not very nice or fun to hang out with. I'm trying to change it, but it is work….

    • Ok, Lee, I have to say, my marriage has that dynamic. BUT, I am a rather serious person if I don't know you yet, and my husband is VERY serious. It's only with me that he gets playful. And, when I was younger (in the beginning stages of our relationship), we were far less playful and we were more "serious".

      I guess my point is, we had to get to that level. Don't discount a girl just because she is somewhat serious.

      • This. I'm the same exact way. I'm a bit of an introvert, and my silliness does not come out with people I don't know that well. Usually that dynamic is created AFTER two people already have established a certain comfort level.

    • Camelopardalis says:

      Accept that the universe is not there to provide you with the woman of your dreams? Choose to appreciate how the woman who really likes you actually does express it? Stop rejecting women b/c of some projection that you have about how they behave when they are in love? So many options.

    • I think that most women are capable of behaving like that when they are truly in love. I myself am fairly standoffish, and generally do not like being touched. I get weirded out by being touchy feely, not my thing at all. I'm not a very serious person, but I've been told I behave very dude-like in general, especially around other guys, I don't act very girly or affectionate at all. Before I fell in love with my boyfriend, I myself would have never thought that I would ever display the behaviours that I do with him. I light up when I see him, I'm extremely affectionate and I can't stop touching him. I'm not so sure about the prancing though – I'm having trouble picturing exactly what it looks like when a woman prances somewhere. I associate that with reindeer and horses? Point is, people behave completely different when they are in love, and you can't tell in advance how they are going to act when that happens.

    • Give it some time, I say. Most people want and enjoy this sort of playful dynamic in a relationship with both friends and dates, but they might not be comfortable enough to let down their guard and do things that, in other situations, would look absolutely ridiculous. If they're nervous (like most people are when they're dating) playfulness and spontaneity don't always come out. I don't know your style, but on your dates, maybe try to be a little more playful and spontaneous yourself. Show her that you're comfortable opening yourself up and be a little ridiculous (in small doses at first, of course). Lead her with your example.

    • I agree with what the other commenters are saying–that often you're not going to see the really playful "in love" behavior from someone until you're closer and you feel totally comfortable with each other, and you probably can't tell whether any given person could behave that way naturally from a first date. And also that if you're focusing on looking for that quality on a first date, your disappointment when (you think) it's not possible with the other person may be affecting how they respond to you. If you're meeting a person already thinking they're not what you really wish you could have, or deciding that not long after meeting them, even if you think you're hiding it well, you're probably coming off as being not all that into them, which may be why you're finding that women are feeling a lack of chemistry with you. So it's better to focus on how much you're enjoying the company of the other person as someone you've just met, rather than trying to predict how things would be if you fell in love with each other. That's getting pretty ahead of yourself!

      I also had a bit of a warning bell go off when you talked about the behavior you're seeing coming from a woman you liked and had asked out. You might want to take a brutally honest look at yourself and consider a couple things. Are you sure that this playful behavior is really the ultimate of what you want in a partner, or are you so drawn to it because you see *her* doing it? Are you disappointed in other women really because you think they couldn't be playful with you, or because they just aren't enough like *her*? My point being that you may be mixing up your wish that you could be with that specific woman with a wish to have whichever woman you do date act that way.

      Maybe that's totally not the case! But it's not unusual for people to keep carrying feelings for someone even after they've been rejected, especially if they're seeing the other person regularly and in a positive way. And there's a difference between really moving on and just suppressing the feeling because you know you can't act on it. It wouldn't reflect badly on you; it'd just mean you need to approach your dating problems in a different way. Because if the real problem is not that you're failing to connect with the women you're meeting because of some quirk of your personality or how you present yourself that you're unaware of, but because you're still kind of hung up on someone else and they're picking up on it, then what you really need to work on is not your personality or presentation but completely getting over that someone else. And while that might be hard, it's actually good news, because it means the problem isn't anything inherent about you or the women you're meeting!

      Anyway, just something to think about, and then totally ignore if you decide I'm off base. :)

      • Its probably a bit of both. When I'm attracted to someone, I tend to fall very fast and very hard. With this women, I've fallen faster and harder than ever before. It wasn't exactly love at first sight but it was pretty close and I still remember the first time I met with her very well and all my experiences with her vividly. From past experience, I really won't be over her till I meet somebody else that I fall for.

        At the same time, its not like my dating experiences after I met her were different before I met her. The women I've been on dates with before I met the woman in question also said that they did not feel chemistry or a connection.

    • Hmmm. The behaviour you're describing there isn't something I'd associate with the early stages of a relationship, or behaviour that is innate and engaged in in general. Most people do act differently with their significant others than with friends and family, but it's also worth noting that the way we behave around our significant others develops over time, as feelings grow stronger, as you start spending increasing amounts of time together, as you both grow and change as people. I've found most relationships tend to start out full of shy, awkward giggling and not quite knowing how to act around each other. But then, that is as much about how I am in a relationship as it is about how the people I've been with are as well.

      If you're discounting women because they don't display specific kinds of emotional behaviour around you, you're setting yourself up to fail. Prancing and lighting up around your other half are things that tend to happen when you're both together long enough to have a fairly deep emotional connection, while still being in that early enthusiastic phase. Now, if you're lucky enough to experience a whirlwind mutual love-at-first-sight connection with someone, you might get that pretty quickly, but still probably not instantly.

  36. Oh and also, Manic Pixie Dream Girls aren't real.

  37. It sounds like you have a very strong picture of what being in love will be like, and I wonder if the fantasy isn't making it hard for you to connect with the actual person you're on a date with. You're so focused on what they'll be like when they're madly in love, maybe you're not actually paying as much attention to whether you like them in the here and now.

    There's nothing wrong with having an idea what would feel good to you in a relationship (it's a good thing, in general), but if you're hoping to fall in love with the potential relationship you might have with your date rather than with the person, I think it could be just another way of holding up an ideal on a pedestal that no one can ever live up to. My relationship with my partner is not the relationship I would have pictured for myself (but I like it!). It doesn't mean I didn't have standards or things I would like, but relationships aren't always so predictable.

    If playful is important to you, seek out playful people, try and create playfulness with people you date, etc., but maybe focus a little less on the end-game. If you're having fun with the person (and they treat you with respect etc.), enjoy it without worrying so much about if they'd fit into the exact fantasy romance you'd pictured.

  38. Attractive people command an scarce resource that they know demands a high price. They are generally only willing to trade it with people willing to offer up something of similar scarcity that they value as well.

    • That's one possible explanation. Like I said, another possible explanation is that the attractive people are simply attracted to each other and that's why they're together, and the attractive woman with the less attractive guy was attracted by his personality. Presenting an observation isn't proof of *why* it happens.

      And BTW, mismatches do run in the other direction plenty of times too. Mel Gibson was considered the "sexiest man alive" for some time, and he was married for 28 years (including that period) to a woman who while not unattractive was surely not the most attractive woman who'd have been up committing to him (http://icydk.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/mel-gibson-robyn.jpg ). There are a gazillion women who'd love to hook up with Colin Firth, but he married a woman with not exactly movie-star level looks. (http://www.virginmedia.com/images/1triniansprem-gal-firth.jpg ) James McAvoy is one of the current most swooned over stars, and he married a woman with relatively ordinary looks and 8 years his senior (http://img.metro.co.uk/i/pix/2008/02/mcavoywifeAP_450x350.jpg ). And I'd say Tobey Maguire, who's also appeared on many "sexiest man" lists, married a pretty plain woman. (http://ll-media.extratv.com/archive/images/news/0904maguire.jpg ) If I can quickly find four examples among some of the biggest stars, it can't be all that rare.

      • " the attractive woman with the less attractive guy was attracted by his personality"

        Ok, but why is this disparity so one sided? How many rock stars marry or date frumpy women because of their "personality"? Why do you think this is?

        I simply do not agree with the examples. None of those couples have wide disparities in attractiveness. And if the girl on Maguire's arm is considered "plain," let's say I'd like to move to his planet.

        • I don't think any of the women in those examples would be considered attractive enough to star in movies in Hollywood, let alone be one of the "sexiest". Note that "plain" does not mean "ugly", but "not eye-catching". If I walked past them on the street, I wouldn't give them a second glance or be awed by their beauty–I see comparable women around me all the time every day. They're not some scarce resource. So I find it hard to believe that those men didn't have woman who eager to be with them who were more attractive. In which case, why did they pick the women they did? What extra market value did those women have? Or could it be… they happened to like those women for who they are, beyond just what they looked like, regardless of what the "market value" of being considered one of the sexiest men alive could get them?

          The real problem here is that you keep insisting on absolutes. If you said "sometimes attractive women go for less attractive men because they're successful" or "some people treat dating as a market" I doubt anyone would argue with you. But you keep insisting that your theories are facts about the vast majority of people, and since the vast majority of people commenting on this blog don't find those theories to be true about themselves or the people they know, they take issue with that. Especially since we have data to the contrary, and you've provided none of your own.

          You seem to think you're so much smarter and better informed than the rest of us, but the funny thing is, if you ran into someone who debated the same way you do (making broad statements of fact without any data to back you up) and didn't agree with you, you'd be mocking them. To paraphrase your very first comment on this post:

          So let me get this straight. A boatload of data, collected through surveys carefully structured and analyzed by trained scientific professionals, pretty obviously suggests one conclusion. But you don't like that conclusion, so you dismiss the data. Instead you rely on… your interpretations of the relationships of a few celebrities. Seriously?

  39. And when you say "guys are more superficial in what they want in a romantic partner than women" aren't you at least partially agreeing with the premise to the argument that I made that seem to upset people so much?

    • You did notice the world "possibly", right? As in, there are other possibilities of why men might pretty much never date women less attractive than themselves other than because they're treating dating and sex like a market. Superficial does not equal commercial.

      Which was all *if* what you posited was even true. I think I've just proven that it isn't "virtually always" the man who's less attractive in mismatched relationships, in my other reply, so your using it as proof is kind of irrelevant now anyway.

      • "there are other possibilities of why men might pretty much never date women less attractive than themselves other than because they're treating dating and sex like a market."

        Such as ? High status men trade their status for relatively attractive women. Both command a scarce resource, and both parties want to avoid selling/trading it for below its market value. I really don't see how this is remotely controversial.

        • Um, I was talking about your assertion that attractive men never date women less attractive than themselves. How high status (but less attractive) men are able to date attractive women isn't the same thing. Your initial argument, if you need reminding, was that "markets rule sex", not "markets rule certain types of sexual relationships".

          But to save us time, I'll pretend you addressed my actual point. If it was true that men almost always refuse to date women less attractive than themselves, one possibility could be that women happen to be more turned on by things like a sense of humor, a charismatic personality, kindness, and other personality traits than men are. And so a woman can be turned on by a guy who's funny and charismatic but not incredibly physically attractive, but a man's level of attraction to a woman is going to be mainly based on her physical attractiveness, regardless of her personality.

          (Not saying that this is true, because I don't even agree with your initial premise, just saying it's no less plausible an explanation than the idea that men are avoiding women who do turn them on but are less attractive because their level of attractiveness has less market value.)

  40. You know, I think in some ways we've been approaching this the wrong way. The question is posed: are women as interested in sex as men are? People start saying clearly not, because women have much higher criteria for going home with a man than vice versa. Clearly, if women were just as horny, they wouldn't be any more picky.

    The problem with that argument is that having heterosexual sex is not the only way to address horniness and interest in sex. Casual sex = sexual pleasure without emotional commitment. Most guys, when suggested they could use masturbation for sexual release, say it's not the same, not as good as how they feel when with another person. But many (perhaps most) women, as you can see examples of right here, find masturbation *more* physically pleasurable than no-strings-attached sex with the average guy.

    Lots of women obviously enjoy sexual pleasure without an emotional connection, or you wouldn't see such nearly matching numbers of women masturbating to men, or such a huge variety of female sex toys on the market. The difference is that when a man feels sexually frustrated, he wants to find a woman for casual sex; when a woman feels sexually frustrated, she can often scratch that itch more thoroughly by having casual sex with herself (which also has the benefits of being totally risk free). The average woman doesn't "need" PiV sex as much as the average man not because she doesn't need sexual release, but she has equal or better ways of getting that.

    If most guys were likely to feel better physically masturbating than having PiV sex, I suspect you'd see a lot fewer guys looking for casual hook-ups too. And when women are being "picky" about who they'd go home with, it's not about them wanting sexual pleasure less than men, it's about the man needing to appear skilled enough to give her at least as much pleasure than she could on her own, or charming/fun/whatever enough that she's getting some social enjoyment out of it to balance things out. That seems totally logical to me.

    And before any guy gripes about how unfair for guys this is, consider that it's unfair for women too. Most of us wish we could come while having sex with our partners as easily as our partners can. Once we're found a guy we do share an emotional connection with, it's frustrating to have it so often be so difficult to share sexual pleasure with them on the same level. No one wins here: guys who want to get off without a relationship have trouble finding partners, and women who want partnered sex in a relationship have trouble getting off.

    (Note: It's obviously hard to say how much of this issue for women is inherent physical design and how much it's caused by psychological hang-ups programmed into us by society, but I'm not sure it matters either way for this particular topic, since neither is something a woman can easily change.)

    • Myster Baad says:

      This goes beyond sexual pleasure, Mel. How familiar are you with the epithets "wanker" or "jackoff"? They don't just mean "male masturbater" (everybody's that). They mean a male who can't get his P in a V. It's a real, living stereotype, a social, psychological, and character judgment. It has a real cost to most men's self-worth.

      We may blame gender roles for that if we like, and rightly, but they're not going to change soon enough to accommodate any male now alive.

      • As in the other post, I don't see how what you're saying goes against anything I'm saying. Whether there are stereotypes and judgements made about men who don't have sex "enough" has no bearing on the question of whether women enjoy sexual pleasure just as much and have just as active a sexual drive as men do, which was the question this post was addressing. Of course there are societal pressures on men to be sexually active. There are also societal pressures on women to *not* be sexually active (or at least, to only be active within certain "acceptable" limits). Those things affect how people think about and act out their sexual desires, but not whether they have those sexual desires at all.

        Many people are working to change gender roles so women feel less shame about seeking sexual partners, and men feel less pressure to do so. Yes, that change happens slowly and we aren't going to suddenly wake up in a completely different world. But I don't see that there's a better solution that would immediately "accommodate" men. So we just have to keep at it and try to change things as quickly as we can. Unless you do have a better solution you'd like to share?

        • Myster Baad says:

          There's no better solution than to just keep pushing to change those roles. I try (mostly thru talking), but I tire easily – I'm 46, isolate/depressive, and positive energy is a scarce resource.

          • Myster Baad says:

            And whoever downvoted me can trip on a shoelace and break a front tooth. I said nothing to deserve that.

          • I agree, so I upvoted that comment. This one, however, deserves a downvote. Clearly having someone not like your comment on the internet is a harm equivalent to breaking a bone.

  41. You know I keep hearing stuff like this and I keep not buying it.

    Oh, I don’t deny any of the observations, they’re exactly what I’d expect them to be. I just think the conclusions are faulty.

    The way I see it is more to the lens of what humans are… a bunch of primates.

    Men and women as such both have a sex-drive, but they are neither identical, nor are they equal. No… they both have exactly the logical sex-drive in regards to how reproduction and evolution work. As well as how group animal psychology works for that matter.

    This means males are divided into Alpha, Beta and Omega males. With most of them being Beta’s. Now most of these males would love the mating privileges of alpha’s, but that doesn’t mean they ARE Alpha’s.

    For female primates this is relevant. Whom you mate with establishes your OWN status in the big monkey troop. So mating with alpha’s is beneficial for a female of a group animal species. That means they can get the best social status.

    Mating with a beta is acceptable, and might well even be desirable. But that’s where the monkeys still start to offer food for sex, just to be sure the female’s interested. Because then there’s a reward. It’s not that a beta isn’t a potentially interesting mate. But it’s not one females’ll necessarily jump on, unless they are omega’s and it’d improve their status and they figure they can’t really have the alpha’s.

    Omega’s however are actively UNdesirable males. They LOWER your status. So you have to be pretty damn desperate to mate with one of THOSE.

    Now alot of people don’t like to pull monkey pack hierarchy into it. And they like to blame culture for it not being a free-love paradise. And they think I’m giving humanity to little credit. (Typical of humans, being the arrogant creatures they are, they always want to see as better and brighter then they really are.)

    Some even say that I’m some sort of arrogant so-and-so, with backwards view, as if it’s MY fucking fault. I mean let me make this clear, I am not a social individual. I never had much patience for all the little political hierarchies humans form. It’s not that I don’t know which guy or girl any given group of human beings picked to be their hallowed grand poobah. It’s just I don’t have a problem telling them and their inevitable phalanx of butthurt supporters to go fuck themselves if my feelings so dictate. Which naturally isn’t conductive to my long term getting along with any groups. Just saying, because I don’t give a crap about all that Alpha, Beta, Omega stuff.

    But I see it’s THERE, and I don’t hold humans in a higher regard then they deserves. They’re just lowly pack animals. And their sexuality reflects this. You see sex for women is potential high risk, and for men it isn’t so of course in PRACTICE men are more interested. That and for men it grants status to fuck as many women as possible, that’s an Alpha thing to do! But for WOMEN that’s an Omega thing to do. Mate with every guy for rewards. For WOMEN the Alpha thing is to snatch an Alpha male. And you can’t weed that out by changing the culture. You could only change that by drastically rewriting human genetics to something far FAR removed from the primates humans are.

    In fact ANYTHING humans do drives back to that primate group hierarchy stuff. Like bullying.

    So where does that leave the poor socially akward nerds?

    Utterly fucked actually, unless they manage to turn that brainpower into steaming gobs of cash.

    Otherwise they’re genes curse most of them to Omega-hood. Bound to have crappy sex-lives and no-sex-lives. Where the exceptions are indeed exceptions.

    You see, the women might actually genuinely like these guys. But their genes are screaming ‘Noooooo! Don’t mate with THIS one! Think of your status in the monkey pack! Anything but THIS one as a SEX partner!’

    It’s genetics really.

    • For someone who doesn't "give a crap about all that Alpha, Beta, Gamma stuff," you seem to have given it a lot of thought.

      I agree that our genetics play a large role in who we are personally and socially, but I think there's something else to consider.

      Even if what you say is true, status is fluid. It's not immutable. A waiter at an upscale restaraunt might be low-status but if he's the only one who knows CPR when one of the patrons has a heart attack, his stock can rise pretty quickly.

      Furthermore, we are also a species that can change and adapt to our social and physical environment. Men change. Women change. We all learn and grow.

      On a less theoretical note, appearing to profess contempt for an entire human species isn't exactly panty-meltingly effective regardless of your social status.

      Just some stuff for your consideration.

      • Myster Baad says:

        Hey, the whole point of evo-psych is that one's status is not entirely in one's control. That's why it's so appealing to a. men with secure status, and b. men who feel powerless about their lack of status.

      • Gentleman Johnny says:

        The whole status thing is so fluid that it borders on a circular argument. Guy is rich and famous? of course he gets women, he's got high status. Guy is a starving artist? Of course he's a chick magnet, he has high status among some people because he's an artist. In fact, if you follow the alpha/beta/omega logic that people are using it seems more like status is defined by the women in a man's life than the other way around.

    • M, I don't agree with your assessment of human social structure (just to start, there are all sorts of evolutionary behavior that we see in primates that humans manage to subvert in our daily lives, so I don't see why those instincts, if they exist, would be overpowering in our hetero sex lives but nowhere else). But I don't think that even matters. You said you "don't buy" the premise of this article, but you haven't actually offered any arguments against it. Say women really do prefer to have sex with "alphas" and "betas" over "omegas". That wouldn't mean they have less of a sex drive or are less interested in sex than men, it'd just mean when they have sex with a man, they use different criteria for deciding who they sleep with. DNL even notes that certain factors you could call "alpha" qualities, like giving the impression of being a good lay, influence women's decisions.

      It kind of sounds like maybe you're trying to say that the higher risk women face is not of safety and being shamed, but of inherently feeling "bad" for having sex because it's an "omega" thing to do. Which, for one, do you really think that this supposed genetic impulse to not act like an omega is more deeply ingrained than the genetic impulse to not go off with a stranger who might hurt or even murder you? I'm pretty sure that for all animals, the impulse to *stay alive* outweighs any concerns about social status. And second, if the reason women are worried about the social consequences of having casual sex come from inside them rather than seeing how society reacts, then why is it that, whenever a community *stops* shaming women for wanting sex (like in the free love movement of the '60s and '70s), suddenly a lot more women are having a lot more casual sex? If it was something inherent to each woman's self-opinion, the opinions of the community wouldn't make a difference.

      • Part of being human is that we can figure out the evolutionary/instinctual urges that drive us, and choose not to be driven by them. Biology doesn't have to be destiny for us.

    • Gentleman Johnny says:

      You know what human do that no other animal does? They assign meaning to things. You've chosen your meaning to assign just like the people who disagree with you. That's a pretty important distinction between people and primates.

  42. Sternococktail says:

    The knowledge is out there – everywhere – but it is like the very old (*) proverb – 'You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.'. If the woman get some pleasure out of the sex act, she is much more likely to want a repetition of it with you. A truism for most men (I hope), but sadly enough not for all. It is even told in songs – check youtube Soul-R&B singer Denise Lasalle – Lick It Before You Stick It .

    (*) It was recorded as early as 1175 in Old English Homilies: Hwa is thet mei thet hors wettrien the him self nule drinken [who can give water to the horse that will not drink of its own accord?]

  43. One of the points that were missed out by a lot of people is that the risks faced by women – slut shaming, STD's, rape & pregnancy – collectively, are not the only factor why women seem less interested in pursuing casual sex. The other reason is that they find fewer men physically & sexually desirable.

    I dont think women have a lower sex drive but they are more selective about who turns them on. Even if we hypothetically create a sex positive world where all the fears of women are allayed, it wouldnt mean the average dude will be getting casual sex as easily as the average woman.

    .

    Dr Nerd Love repeatedly says "it came down to safety issues and a "HOW GOOD A LAY A MAN WAS PERCEIVED TO BE"

    And again

    “women are far more motivated by the likelihood of sexual pleasure than any other factor.
    THE BETTER THE LAY the man was perceived to be, the more receptive the women were to the possibility of a fling"

    Dr Nerdlove and most of the posters here dont touch the question what exactly makes a man a good lay?
    Its a clumsy and indirect way of alluding to a man who possesses good looks, great physique, is preferably tall, has sexual prowess and experience, charm and lots of confidence (that cant be pulled put of the ass!)

    Could it be that women just feel there are few men who are perceived to be good lays? Could it be that most women dont perceive most men to be good lays? If this is so, then creating a sex positive world and removing womens fears discussed above, will not have any noticeable affect on the casual sex marketplace.

  44. ScienceNerdGirl says:

    It's not just outright shaming or violence, but that kind of icky coldness that's a problem. It never feels good to have sex and then feel that the person just inside you (and even if it's casual, there's some entry into the heart, too, even if on the shallowest level) is cold towards or contemptuous of you. A lot more straight women would be into casual sex if the guy would simply be nice afterwards; not necessarily interested in a relationship, commitment, etc., but just nice. Like, hey, we just shared a good time together; thanks for a nice night, whatever. Instead, it's often this icy contempt, like, now you are dirty, eeww… this does not make me want to have sex with anyone until I know them quite well, even if I do feel physically safe.

  45. johnnight says:

    > Our society still puts emphasis on the commodity model of sex: … If a woman gives away her goods too “cheaply”, it devalues her as a person.

    This is bullshit. Men have a built-in biological disgust for women, who were used by many other men. Claiming that it's societal norms, which can be change through reeducation, is idiotic feminist propaganda.

  46. celblocktango says:

    One of the flaws in the original study that wasn't mentioned I think is the condition in which people were propositioned for sex. If I am just walking down the street and someone asks me if I want to have sex with them, of course I'm going to say no. I'm probably on my way somewhere and not in the mindset of looking for a good lay. I have had absolutely no prior contact with this individual, so (like mentioned in the article) I am going to have safety concerns, as well as uncertainty about his prowess in bed.

    However, if I am out at a bar or party or other public place where it's easy to socialize with strangers, I might strike up a conversation with someone I'd never met before, and if he offered to take me home at the end of the night, there is a significant chance I would say yes if I was interested. He may still be a stranger, but I've had that hour or two or however many to gauge whether he will be worth my time, and I'm also more in the mindset of looking for a good time.

    So I guess it's a good idea to distinguish the environment in which this kind of interaction might occur. Stranger or no, I'd still like to have an idea of what this person is like before I'm going to jump into bed with them.

    Also, did anyone edit this article? Need to learn the difference between "its" and "it's" lol

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  2. [...] Even as social mores changed with rise of feminism and the Sexual Revolution in the 60s, women who were overtly sexual were portrayed as having something wrong with them; they clearly had been abused, or psychological problems or were otherwise just “damaged goods”. The idea that they might have sex for pleasure’s sake was anathema. Women, we are told over and over again, require emotional inspiration for sex; even the classic “Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex (But Were Afraid To Ask)” insisted that “before a woman could have sexual intercourse, she must have social intercourse”. The infamous 1989 Clark/Hatfield study continues to be held up as “evidence” that women don’t like sex the way that men do despite the problems with its methodology and the subsequent studies that refute it. [...]

  3. […] concern to you. After all, part of what makes a woman more likely to consider a casual hook up is whether the sex will be worth it… there’s nothing quite like a bad hook-up to put anybody off happy naked stranger time for […]

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