Bed, Bitch & Beyond-Readers Strap On!: Your Response to "Rear Ended by Porn"


The reader response to "Rear Ended by Porn" was big and vocal and, frankly, pretty awesome, with plenty of you bitches bringing up aspects of the debate that I didn't write about in the original post. There was hateration, too, but I chalk that up to the fact that when you encourage women to take a critical look at their sexual behavior, they're going to resist. Our society feeds us a constant diet of shame and negative messages about sex, so a lot of women automatically default to feeling judged as soon as you suggest that their sexuality might be influenced by something other than their own very special personal free will. But I loved (nearly all) of the responses that I got, especially the ones that were e-mailed directly to me, most of which I'm keeping under seal of the sex-blog confessional.

Here's an example, from Facebook, that pretty much sums up how a lot of people seemed to feel:

This makes me so frustrated. I agree that anal sex is fine if both people are consenting and into trying it. However, I'm so tired of women having to live up to sexual expectations just because we are that-- women. I hate that in order to be considered "sexy", we have to forfeit our pleasure. I hate that girls who are just discovering their sexuality are led to believe that they must become what porn deems them to be. And most of all, I hate the porn/raunch society that we've become. A society that degrades, insults us and makes us feel bad about ourselves because we're not some sexist man's ideal? So not cool.

Yeah, what she said.

Of course, there were people who wanted me to know they were choosing their choice, but it has nothing to do with the culture they live in:

I am not doing [anal and shaving] as a trend, or because of porn's evil influences. I am doing it because I love my boyfriend, love sex and want to try as many flavors as I can in order to establish my likes and dislikes.

I'm all for trying establish likes and dislikes--porn can give you useful inspiration--and if you have a partner who wants to accompany you in your sexual adventures, you're a lucky woman. But this comment is a really good example of how we are influenced by what we've seen but still persist in thinking we magically came up with it all on our own. I replied:

It's entirely possible to love your boyfriend and love sex without shaving or having anal sex. But you CHOOSE to do those things as an expression of love and because you find them erotic and exciting. The question is: why do those things represent love and eroticism to you? Where did you and your boyfriend first see them and start associating them with arousal and enjoyment? Porn, right?

There were relatively few commenters, though, who said wanted to try anal, and an awful lot of them (especially on Facebook) claim to espouse the "sauce for the goose, sauce for the gander" approach to back-door lovin':

I've had many male sex partners ask me about anal. My official position is that if I am going to have anything shoved up my ass, my partner needs to have something of greater or equal size/texture shoved up theirs. Most men usually don't bring it up again.

or:

...typically when I ask if in return I could plunder a guy's virgin sphincter, I'm told "no way jose!" My response? "Exactly my point. Quit asking."

Fair enough.

One of my gay male friends has a golden rule in his sex life: I won't bottom for anyone who won't bottom for me. That seems entirely reasonable, IMO. I have had boyfriends who loved a dildo or a couple of fingers up the ass, and their willingness to be explored definitely made me a lot more likely to let them explore. (Incidentally, "I'll only do it for you if you'll do it for me" principle should always apply to oral sex as well). Reciprocity is the key to good sex, but unfortunately, you almost never see it in mainstream hetero porn, in which penetration is strictly for women only (because a dude getting something up his ass is totes gay! Cue the homophobia!).

A different commenter wanted to (figuratively) ream me out for focusing on porn instead of that beloved conservative sham, abstinence-only education:

4+ posts and still no mention of abstinence only education. yup, porn is definitely your strongest perpetrator, and it certainly reaches far more children and adolescents across the US than the fucked up messages of AOE. (ed: that was sarcasm, btw, in case you missed it). to the point where it justifies four posts (plus comments!) (ed: ZOMG! This makes five!) rhapsodizing on the harm porn has caused adolescent and young adult sexuality and not a glance thrown in the direction of this popular "education" method that makes an appearance in many of america's schools.

This comment actually makes my point for me: kids ARE learning about sex from porn because of the complete absence of any other useful messages. I agree that to a certain extent we can thank abstinence-only education for teenagers' general sexual ignorance; AOE doesn't teach anything even remotely useful about sex. So what fills the vacuum? When sex-ed is limited to "OMG, DON'T DO IT!" then where are young people getting their ideas about sexual behavior? From the most readily accessible depictions of sex available to them: internet porn.

Another commenter from Facebook expressed the same concern when she said:

It's too bad that sex ed is all about biology and abstinence, leaving all the other many many aspects of a healthy, assertive, consensual pleasurable sex life to the entertainment industry. Entertainment. Industry.

Exactly. Wank material! It's not just for wanking anymore! Now it's your socially acceptable script for sexual behavior.

Amanda Marcotte at Pandagon wrote about my post and also addressed the sex ed vs. porn issue when it comes to anal sex:

Young people get very little sex education to begin with, and absolutely none when it comes to things like anal, which you should approach with caution, because you can hurt yourself. So when we say porn is causing an escalation in the amount of anal sex with young people, there's a real cause to believe that it's being practiced as taught in porn---something that debases women, and therefore if it hurts or you're made to feel dirty, that's part of the "fun". Indeed, I have a strong reason to believe that older people fall into this trap, too. Periodically, you'll read advice columns about sex or listen to the Savage Love Podcast, and there will be a woman who feels bad because the pain of anal sex is so unbearable, and she doesn't want to keep going, but I guess she feels she has to. There's no doubt what's going on there---he just plunged in, maybe not even using lube, and because porn reflects our society, and therefore sends the message that sex is something women perform for men (and therefore, like good performers, we believe the show must go on!), she simply endured. And now she's scared, for good reason, to try again. Portrayals of effective, pleasurable anal sex are stuck in books shoved in the back shelves of feminist-minded sex shops.

And for the concern trolls who think it's such a DRAG that I keep bringing up porn and want me to STFU about porn already, Amanda explains why it's important to discuss it:

Of course, the real reason a lot of feminists I know express these concerns, is because we've been there. We've let guys push us around, because we didn't know there were options. We built up bravado about it, because we didn't see any way out. We thought the choices were be treated poorly or be celibate. We didn't know you could say no to someone shooting on your face and enjoying his power over you while you frantically tried not to cry because come was leaking into your eyes. We didn't know that there was a way to do anal sex that wasn't painful, but was actually fun for you. And some of us took a long time to learn otherwise, because there's few people out there saying that we can demand respect and still have fun, because so many liberals are cowed by the fear that expressing such a message brings down the hoards of people claiming you're anti-sex. Which is awful, because most of us start to practice what we fear to preach once we get a little power and a few, hard-to-find books.

I'm 34 and in my sex life I've misjudged men and situations, felt pressured, given in to pressure, resisted pressure, questioned what I was doing and why and whether it actually made me feel good, etc. I have had to do a lot of self-examination in my own sex life, and it gave me perspective, and confidence and helped me make choices that benefitted ME and MY pleasure, not just my partners'. I have a lot of sex (including anal), and I watch porn, but that doesn't mean I'm not aware of misogynist or anti-sex messages that I get from porn. Those messages truly do shape our culture and sexual behavior. And I'm going to call them out, because that is what feminists do.

(Next time: a porn-free post, thanks to commenter jordanb, who suggested a very smart, counterintuitive topic in the thread!)

Comments

40 comments have been made. Post a comment.

Distorted Understanding of Sexuality

(Incidentally, "I'll only do it for you if you'll do it for me" principle should always apply to oral sex as well).

Actually, no. Not necessarily. The promotion of the concept of sex being a tit-for-tat proposition does as much damage to how people view sexuality than anything seen in porn.

Reciprocity is the key to good sex,

Actually, no. Communication and trust are the keys to good sex, especially if you define "reciprocity" as "I'll let you stick something up my ass if you let me stick something up your ass," or things of that ilk.

If you are at a point where you're prepared to punish a partner for not doing something by not doing something in return, I'd suggest you have some other issues to deal with. Sex is not supposed to work like that.

Good thing you're not writing a sex education curriculum. Jesus.

I used to have a lot of respect for Bitch Magazine, but lately you folks have just gotten way too...preachy for me.

Distortion is in the eye of the beholder...

It's not "distorted" or "preachy" to say that a woman should expect her partner to give her pleasure and her satisfaction the same value as his own. That's what reciprocity is. I hope you have it in your own sex life.

And if someone is unwilling to perform a particular sex act, that's their right, but it would be wrong for them to pressure their partner to perform the same act on them (which is what the commenters were describing with regard to anal, and which is totally par for the course with oral, especially in porn).

And since when did I say I was "writing a sex ed curriculum?"

Knee-jerk much?

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

I see what both of you mean

I see what both of you mean by reciprocity, but I agree with Alexa that it shouldn't be a "I'll do X to you if you'll do X to me" kinda thing. I think that if you wanted to, say, do oral on a guy (or gal or whoever), you shouldn't do it simply because you want oral in return. You should do it because you also get pleasure/satisfaction from doing it to your partner. If that makes sense. I guess what I'm trying to say is, if you don't like doing something, don't do it. And don't do it just to get your partner to do something for you.
Otherwise, I agree with the points you've brought up in this series of posts on porn and sexual behavior and I look forward to more.

Knee Jerk? You Jerk!

Becky Sharper you are ruining Bitch blog with your O'Reilly-esque polemics! One of the things that makes Bitch better than Fox News is that it offers, not only a different perspective, but a more informed, measured and intelligent form of commentary. It is, at its best, an altogether different mode of engaging with popular culture. Here, however, you seem more interested in attacking your readers than in having a conversation. To comment on your posts without being in absolute agreement is to wait for an intentional misreading and complete rebuttal from Her Harpyness. Your posts and, even worse, your follow-ups produce little more than antagonistic rejoinders (as evidenced by the above two comments--and this one!). If you can't rethink and reposition the debate, the very least you could do is set this tired dialectic against "raunch culture" in motion. Really, anything would be better than questioning your readers' sex lives in that miserably condescending tone.

love it

I love Becky's posts. I am stoked that feminist's are critiquing porn. I get so tired of hearing how liberating porn is and how a 'real' feminist these days should love it.

I am stoked on Becky's claims against hetero-normative porn.

Oh concern troll...

...anyone who doesn't agree with you is Bill O'Reilly? Oh noes! Now Bitch is Fox News just because you got pwned! Puh-lease.

One of the things Becky does best is respond to her critics. You're just attacking her personally because your point (and tone) sucked and she called you on it. If you hadn't been a jerk to her in your first comment, maybe you would have gotten a reasonable response.

Becky, these pieces are awesome, and I like your non-judgemental tone about porn. Let the haters hate. I think you pegged why they're doing it--some people are too insecure to handle any critical thought, even when criticism isn't directed at them.

Oh concern troll...

...anyone who doesn't agree with you is Bill O'Reilly? Oh noes! Now Bitch is Fox News just because you got pwned! Puh-lease.

One of the things Becky does best is respond to her critics. You're just attacking her personally because your point (and tone) sucked and she called you on it. If you hadn't been a jerk to her in your first comment, maybe you would have gotten a reasonable response.

Becky, these pieces are awesome, and I like your non-judgemental tone about porn. Let the haters hate. I think you pegged why they're doing it--some people are too insecure to handle any critical thought, even when criticism isn't directed at them.

LOL.

So now I'm Bill O'Reilly and dragging Bitch down with me?

SRSLY? You're just embarrassing yourself.

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

I just want to point out

I just want to point out that the person who called you O'Reilly-esque and the person who left the first comment are not the same person.

wow, good for you!

Your ad hominem attack on Becky really makes no sense at all. There's no Bill O'Reilly here, and any time you have to say OMG UR FOX NEWS, it's usually a sign that your argument is a FAIL and you're just going to hurl insults as a last resort.

I love this blog. Too many feminists don't speak up about the misogyny of porn because of close-minded "liberals" like you, who start screeching that they're OMG FOX NEWS when they do. There should be a place for an intelligent, well-reasoned, well-researched critique. (and incidentally, I like that BeckySharper takes the time to respond to what people say. She clearly respects the Bitch readership--haters like you excluded).

I'm glad Bitch is giving equal space to this topic. All porn is not good for women, and women shouldn't be ashamed to say that, or be shouted down by reactionaries when they do.

Bill O'Reilly would be so proud of you

....you know that your argument is an epic FAIL when you're just hurling Fox News insults.

I love this blog, and these posts about porn. For too long women have been afraid to speak up about the misogynist aspects of porn because of liberals--like you!--who shout them down as sex-negative. There's definitely room in the feminist blogosphere--especially on Bitch--for this type of rational, well-written, well-researched treatment of the issue. Good for Becky Sharper for speaking up, even in the face of reactionaries like you who just want to insult her for speaking a truth you don't want to hear.

And I like that Becky does response posts--she seems to respect Bitch readers and their opinions and want to give them equal time (minus the haters like you, but really, you don't have an opinion, you just have vitriol).

Reading comprehension

First off, go back and re-read my statement about sex ed. I didn't say you were writing a curriculum, I said it's a good thing you weren't. There's a difference there.

Lack of reading comprehension skills, much?

It's not wrong to expect a sexual relationship to be coequal, no.

But when you start suggesting that person A should withhold X from person B because person B won't perform X, that's using sex or the withholding of sex as a punishment. And when you get to that point, the relationship is doomed. It is quite possible to construct a balanced sexual relationship (i.e., one that is "reciprocal," to use your word) without resorting to the petty tit-for-tat scenarios you've suggested.

The point about you not creating a sex ed curriculum is that it's dangerous to even remotely suggest it is okay to use punishment or antagonism in the bedroom as a way to ensure equality (reciprocity).

Quite frankly, I even have a problem with the use of the word "reciprocal" in this context. I prefer "balanced" because it reflects the fact that the people involved can construct a relationship that evens out in the sexual arena. If I don't want to do X, then maybe I'll be more comfortable doing Y, and the other person will be just as happy with that as if I'd done X. The use of the word "reciprocal" suggests that, if my partner wants me to do X but I don't want to, s/he should'nt do X either just to spite me.

And even though you'll come back here and argue that that's not what you're saying, that is indeed the way many are reading it. If that's not what you mean, perhaps you should find another way to frame it.

I'm just reading your comments now...

It seems to me that you focused on one small part of one line in this whole post and got all righteous about it.

The full line is: "Reciprocity is the key to good sex, but unfortunately, you almost never see it in mainstream hetero porn, in which penetration is strictly for women only."

The point is that you don't see reciprocity in het porn and that women should insist on men paying attention to their needs. But you just broke off one chunk of the sentence to critique, and you tell Becky that HER reading comprehension is bad?

You decided to nitpick and give a totally un-generous read to a line--and post--that make perfect sense. And your first comment was unnecessarily hostile.

Why do feminists feel so compelled to attack other feminists this way?

Here is what YOU are leaving

Here is what YOU are leaving out:

One of my gay male friends has a golden rule in his sex life: I won't bottom for anyone who won't bottom for me. That seems entirely reasonable, IMO

This line is NOT about porn it is about an actual relationship and Becky doesn’t see a problem playing tic for tact and in fact considers it reasonable. This is bad advice, distorted advice. Also the line immediately after that is again talking about her actual boyfriends.

(Incidentally, "I'll only do it for you if you'll do it for me" principle should always apply to oral sex as well).

Here she again she unprompted drifts away from porn and applies it to actual relationships and oral sex and again is playing tic for-tac with specific acts.

The point is Becky is in presenting act based tic-for-tac as healthy in life. It is not.

except that's not the line the commenter took issue with...

Alexa was angry about the line where Becky said, "Reciprocity is they key to good sex"--a small part of an overall sentence about how women's needs are ignored in porn.

And yeah, if a "dude won't bottom for me, I won't bottom for him" makes sense to this breeder-feminist. Equality counts, even in bed. My needs matter just as much as his, and he shouldn't ask me to do any sex act he wouldn't be willing to do.

I agree with you mostly, but

I agree with you mostly, but I think this point may have been taken too ideologically, if that's possible (I kind of hate to say that because I hate when people get on here and say things like, "It's just anal sex! What's the big deal?! You're overthinking it!"). But in this case I really think that Becky's point was pretty simple. Many guys who try to pressure girls into having anal would freak out at the very thought of anything similar being done to them. I think the point was simply to get them to consider what it's like for a girl and try to understand that she may not want it done to her just like he doesn't want it done to himself. Sorry, this is more for other commenters than you, since I think you have it pretty much spot on!

I think you mean tit-for-tat

Nothing wrong with insisting that men be givers as well as takers bed. That's not some kind of petty tit-for-tat, that's respect and equality and generosity, which we should expect from our partners.

In porn, all the focus is on what the woman's doing to or for the man. Becky's right to speak out against that. I'm sick of how our so-called liberated Western culture still treats women like they're just supposed to please men, and the only thrill they get is from GIVING pleasure. Please don't add to that with your comments disparaging a woman who says we should demand something different.

what a relief

To see this brought up in the first comment is so gratifying - it was the thing that stuck out as a harmful message to me, too.

Imagine a dude who demanded reciprocity in sex - "I did this, now you have to do this."

Different people almost always want different things. Sometimes a person who loves giving head hooks up with a person who loves receiving it, and the person who loves giving it feels weird receiving it and the person who loves receiving it doesn't enjoy giving it. The "reciprocity" decree calls that couple incompatible, rather than made for one another.

The only sense in which quid pro quo should be observed in sex is that each partner should (probably?) strive to make the other as satisfied as they expect to be satisfied themselves. And as for the division of specific tasks, maybe we should just leave that up to the people doing the actual fucking instead of prescribing it for them.

classic example

Woman writes something about sex. Woman 2 accuses her of "being preachy" and gratuitously insults her.

girl on girl intellectual violence! and over porn! so worthwhile! so helpful to women!

somewhere the patriarchy is smiling...

Something missing in this set...

I see a crucial distinction between what Becky said in this passage and what the naysayers are taking from it.
I'm pretty sure Becky's intention with the "reciprocity" idea is NOT that you should expect your partner to reciprocate a sex act or that you should do X *so that* they will respond in kind. It's that the partner should be willing to reciprocate (and, indeed, stay "balanced") if asked, after asking for the act themselves.
Does that make sense? An example: a male partner asks a female partner to bottom him for anal sex. She says, "Well, that might be embarrassing and not very pleasurable for me. Would you be willing to do the same for me?" He says either, "Sure. I understand that you might be curious to try it too," or "No, that's too humiliating and emasculating. That's not what we men do." If the former is the case, and she is in fact willing to try both, they may have anal sex in one direction, and then the other if it still seems appealing to both. If the latter is the case, maybe she should reconsider the male's level of respect for her, since he seems to think he has more of a right to put her in a potentially degrading and un-fun position as a man.
Obviously I'm paraphrasing and being glib here, but I hope the point has been made. I don't think Ms. Sharper was ever saying "Do X so you'll get X in return!" though many seem to have interpreted it that way. The fact is, fellatio and female-bottoming anal can often feel degrading and not pleasurable for women, yet culture (and yes, porn!) normalizes these acts much more than cunnilingus and male-bottoming with the idea that men have more of a right to partake of the female body than the reverse. (And in fact, there's the small matter of the prostate. Biologically, the male-bodied tend to be more likely to enjoy anal penetration because of what they've got!) I have no objection to Sharper's statement for these reasons, and I feel as if the people who do object are taking something from it that might not be there.

THIS.

Thank you so much! For putting into words the thoughts that are bouncing ineloquently around in my head.

so the people who suggested

so the people who suggested that the increased popularity of anal sex might be more complicated than you suggest are just unable to accept a "critical look" at sexual behavior? patronizing and not necessarily true. not swallowing your particular view on sexual behavior (and suggesting other factors might be at play as well, ex. abstinence only ed) does not make a person uncritical.

you've mentioned that "have had to do a lot of self-examination in my own sex life, and it gave me perspective, and confidence and helped me make choices that benefitted ME and MY pleasure, not just my partners'". assuming that people haven't done similar self-examination because they've come to different conclusions is ridiculous.

also, i still don't get the purpose of this column. why the need to make another post on the comments from your last one (other than diverting attention from the last post in favor of your argument again and to lament the fact that people don't agree with it wholesale. oh no!)? why the posts devoted to this author's high school crushes, threesomes, etc.? this is reading less and less like the bitch mag i'm familiar with and more like a personal blog or self-involved column that i'd see on the frisky or *gulp* a standard (hetero) women's magazine. it all seems very "101" and embarrassing. i find myself sighing and wondering what the fuck happened when i read articles from the archive.

The purpose of the response post is...

...to let other people's voices be heard on this issue. I think readers came up with a lot of valuable insight and mentioned aspects of this discussion that I didn't in the original post, like the role of sex ed and abstinence-only education, as well as why it's important for feminists to continue to tackle this topic, even when liberals shout us down for being sex-negative. Those things are worthwhile and should be part of the discussion.

I'm not blogging in a vacuum--this is more of an ongoing conversation. I get a lot of responses, both here and on Facebook and e-mailed to me, and they form part of the conversation. I think readers' opinions matter and I wanted to feature them. Obviously, I can't do all of them, but I try to get as much variety of opinion in there, even with the people who disagree with me or hate on me.

When I asked the editors at Bitch if I should do response posts, I got an enthusiastic "yes!" So I did.

But if you don't like them, just skip this one and read the next one, which is on a different topic entirely.

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

letting voices be heard

As a matter of general form, it is not precisely fair to claim that one is "let[ting] other voices be heard" when those which fail to heap laud on the quoting party are peppered with snide editorial remarks.

Aside from the quoted material which praised you, you pretty much picked examples of arguments you thought were particularly weak and held them up to mock them. Leaving aside the hoary adage that no publicity is bad, that's pretty far from just plain sharing the soapbox.

I think what's most frustrating to some readers is that you are either dancing nearby to or just directly making any number of totally good points that call porn to the mat... and then undermining them by burying them in with a bunch of heavy-handed uh... bunk.

You didn't expect her to say

You didn't expect her to say "You haters are right! I'm turning in my feminist card! Thanks for calling me Bill O'Reilly!" did you? If you had your own blog on Bitch, you'd be promoting and defending your own viewpoint, wouldn't you?

I disagree with you--I think a LOT of good points were made in these posts. Frankly, I like the way Becky responds to her critics--she's taken a lot of heat for these posts from fellow feminists who seem determined to misunderstand her and insult her, which is a damn shame.

Team Becky Sharper!

Team No Thank You

Aight if we're getting off on some shirts and skins type of ish here, I don't think I can play.

I'm not speaking as someone on whatever team is against Team Becky Sharper, I just have some issues. That's all I've seen from anywhere... and then enthusiastic boosters swoop in and start crowing about how stupid all criticisms are, and uh it doesn't feel like a very open discourse.

Fair enough, but what you

Fair enough, but what you call "criticisms" are not actual criticisms, they're crap like: "You're acting like Bill O'Reilly and destroying Bitch!" and "It's a good thing you're not writing a sex ed curriculum!"

The comments that started off this thread were just out-and-out nasty and personal, not part of a discourse. The hateration here is so discouraging, and I think that's why people feel compelled to point out how stupid these "criticisms" are.

Common Ground

It seems that you share the same concerns as those of us who offered a critique of Sharper's tone and approach to responding to readers. Because there has been quite a bit of confusion, I want to point out that that critique was not a critique of Sharper's thoughts on porn, but rather a critique of her mode of engaging in a discourse.

As you put it yourself, the comments that started off this thread were out-and-out nasty, not part of a discourse. But I think those comments started with the blog post itself, and in fact produced the nastiness that you are rightly opposing here.

I also want to point out that comparing one media pundit to another may seem harsh, but it is not at all personal. Personal is questioning someone's sex life, rather than questioning their understanding of sexuality; personal is telling someone they're embarrassing themselves, rather than explaining the mistake in their argument.

In any case, it seems that we are all interested in actually having a conversation here at Bitch Blog. I think we all value the contributors and the work they do. I think we all want this forum to foster a productive communal experience that will lead to insightful responses to popular culture. We can probably even agree that Sharper's posts on porn have contributed to a lively conversation. So we do share some common ground. But I maintain that Sharper bears responsibility for her insulting and unfair responses to readers.

if you want to find common ground...

You should refrain from nasty personal attacks yourself. You immediately dragged the level of discourse down by accusing her of ruining Bitch and being like Bill O'Reilly (and since when were Bitch bloggers "media pundits" on the same level as O'Reilly?)

You don't get to have it both ways. If you want respect, you should treat others respectfully. It's discouraging to see someone (you) making those remarks and then trying to blame the victim of the remarks (Becky) as though it was her fault you were an asshole to her.

Bad form, and unworthy of the search for common ground you supposedly want.

Ask Men

If you want to read some more douchbagery on anal go to askmen.com. There are many articles on how to trick and otherwise coerce your girl friend into doing anal. And of course if she doesn't want to then she's "sexually close minded".

yikes!

Because trying to rape your girlfriend is so open-minded! Sheesh. Clicking on it would probably not be good for my blood pressure.

How much you wanna bet that the site is curated, edited and written by Tucker Max?

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Bend Over Boyfriend, The Anal Advisor...

In addition to the mainstream, het porn, there's also a lot more porn by & for women, or at least not assuming traditional het dynamics. There's "Bend Over Boyfriend" ... there's Dan Savage's column coining the term "pegging" for a woman using a strap-on on a man... there's Tristan Taormino's tireless and enthusiastic campaign of demystifying anal sex (and making sure it's safe, fun and painless) in videos, books, on the web, at workshops, and in her porn-mag advice columns. I feel like we need to clarify a lot more definitions before we can even have a productive conversation about "porn" -- it's not monolithic, least of all on the Internet.

"One of my gay male friends

"One of my gay male friends has a golden rule in his sex life: I won't bottom for anyone who won't bottom for me. That seems entirely reasonable, IMO."

Of course that's reasonable, because that is your friends preference. I might be wrong; I read your agreement with your friend's statement differently, that you find his rule valid and right because it calls for sexual partners to be versatile. Other queer/gay/bi dudes prefer to only/mostly top/bottom. Having all of these preferences is just as valid as being versatile. See also: Bottom pride.

I love Becky's Stuff...

Thank you so much for writing the last several articles you've written! I, like a commentor I saw above, am also completely SICK of mainstream porn being portrayed as this liberating, wonderfully feminist and super-healthy thing for all women and girls. My mom and I have always been very open about sex, from the time I was little, and so far each porn and sexuality-related article you've written has been e-mailed to her, with great review and enjoyment! I am celibate by choice, but while my own personal convictions include celibacy outside of marriage (not really interested in marriage, though), I totally agree that it just doesn't cut it to tell kids "Don't do it!" and leave it at that. Even though abstinence is the only way to completely prevent STD's, pregnancy, etc., it's just not going to happen for the vast majority of people out there, so we're leaving it up to our male-dominated, oft-misogynistic media to tell these kids what's normal, healthy, fun, and in essence, choosing their sex-lives for them (especially in young girls). Anyway, don't mean to be long-winded, but again, I love your posts, articles, your stands on these important issues, and most of all I really love that you encourage women in making their own choices for their own reasons. How truly and utterly feminist. THANK YOU!

thanks!

Glad you and your mom like the posts. She sounds quite a bit like my own mom!

I'm curious about your choice to be celibate, since I'm writing about that in my next post. I'd love it if you can e-mail me ([email protected]) and share some insights into why you choose to be celibate, what the rewards of it are, the response you get from your peers, etc.

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

I think it's cool that Becky

I think it's cool that Becky is interested in allowing commenter feedback to shape where she goes with this topic. I think she's picking up on comments that she finds challenging, that move the conversation in a direction she hadn't expected but a direction that she finds interesting - something she wants to write about. It's a very exciting way to use a blog. I think it's pretty clear that this post stands as a bridge to the next post. A way of keeping everyone who's interested up to speed on where the conversation is going. Also cool. That she's relying on positive commenter feedback is certainly a choice that she's making, as in she could choose to allow negative commenter feedback to shape the conversation. She could also choose not to point out the flaws in the negative feedback. Also a choice.

To be honest, I haven't been personally impressed by a lot of the negative feedback. I think those who have made negative comments are doing so at the cost of seeing or caring about the larger conversation that's going on. I'm disappointed that so many people seem to think negative feedback makes for intelligent commentary. I'm also disappointed that people who make negative comments think they should have so much power to shape the conversation. And I'm mostly just weirded out that people who have made negative comments think Becky shouldn't respond to them. You obviously disagree with her, why did you think she's was going to agree with you?

In the end (anal sex pun intended), I'm just not that interested in why people hate Becky's post. Lots of people did like the posts and are trying to have an interesting conversation about some ideas their bringing up. To all you haters - go play in traffic.

you are awesome.

Thank You!!! I seriously couldn't of said it better myself.

reciprocity, not revenge

I really don't like how the "you can do me if I can do you" line is pulled out by people using it as some sort of defense rather than a heartfelt invitation. The use of sex as a threat shouldn't be how people treat each other. If anal is that scary to you, then say so, don't perpetuate a culture of sexual violence.

I agree that the whole "Oh

I agree that the whole "Oh yeah, how'd you like it if I stuck something up your ass?!" response can seem hostile and defensive. My sense is that a lot of women just get fed up with being pressured and that response springs from their anger and frustration. It's definitely not ideal communication between partners, but I can certainly understand why they feel that way, and why that line works when dudes otherwise can't take the hint.

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Becky Sharper www.harpyness.com

Women have a thing for

Women have a thing for raunchy sex too. I can't say all porn is degrading. As a matter of fact, before I have ever watched a porn I used to have mental images of similar sex acts. Nothing was put into my head that wasn't already there.

Renegade Bitch!
AKA Wicked Bitch of the Best!