Some women approach sex with romantic illusions. They expect a lover to be so aroused by their body that he ‘sweeps them off their feet’ with his sexual passion. They may not accept the need to offer any more turn-ons. [i]
Women’s ‘responses’ with a lover are driven by social attitudes. For example, in the past women were often expected NOT to respond to intercourse. Men considered it unseemly for a woman to cooperate with intercourse. Perhaps the idea that a woman might be getting something from the activity put pressure on a man to continue intercourse for longer than he could. This is yet more evidence that women’s responses with a lover involve conscious behaviours rather than spontaneous sexual responses. No one can easily suppress their natural responsiveness over long periods.
Films use sound effects to indicate a couple having sex off-screen: a regular banging (of a bed against a wall) and the woman’s vocal accompaniment. Such scenes may represent a turn-on for men but it seems to me that men enjoy making female arousal into a tasteless joke. Male fantasies put tremendous pressure on women to conform to men’s view of their sexuality. Female orgasm is more often associated with porn than with real life.
Men who watch porn (I realise that is any male with access to a computer!) come to expect every woman (even their wives) to provide these turn-ons. Some women are never exposed to accounts of how women provide a ‘sexual performance’ for the gratification of a male audience. Even if they are, many women are not equipped with the sexual instincts to provide this erotic show. Men seem to think that every woman has the skills of a porn star, a prostitute or a mistress. Such a woman needs to be unoffended by men’s carnal instincts and able to put on a convincing erotic performance.
We experience intimacy not just through sex but also through inflicting pain. We hurt others (either physically or by what we say) because it feels good. We obtain a form of personal gratification but this is not necessarily sexual. Women can be bullies as much as men but they are not equipped (physically or emotionally) to get sexual gratification from others by force.
In the UK there were 53,665 sexual offences (rape, sexual assault, sexual activity with minors and ‘other sexual offences’) in 2011. There were only 103 women in custody for sexual offences (compared with 10,832 men). The vast majority of women had an offence type of ‘other sexual offences’.
While women often fail to appreciate the importance men place on eroticism men seldom appreciate the importance women place on affection.
[i] A good many females … contribute little or nothing to the pre-coital activities with which the males are inclined to preface their coitus. The female’s abstinence may be based on a trained modesty… on the theory that the male is normally so aroused that he does not need additional physical stimulation; … on the theory that … sex should always be associated with romanticism and gallantry, it becomes the duty of the male to provide for the pleasure of the female. (p372 Kinsey 1953)
Excerpt from Jane’s book Sexuality & Sexual Techniques (2015)