Showing posts with label forceful. Show all posts
Showing posts with label forceful. Show all posts

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Consent Is Sexy As Hell

The erotica genre is full of sexy bits and steamy pieces. We like to read about things happening to us that we'd never, ever, ever want to happen in real life. That's kind of the point, isn't it? To confront the things that maybe scare us but that turn us on in spite of, or maybe because of, that fear.

The language of erotica is often forceful because--well, that's sexy. I think there's not a woman around who doesn't wish, at least on some level, that her partner desired her so completely that he or she simply couldn't resist taking her in all kinds of kinky, messy ways. We like to think of ourselves as delicate and hesitant and maybe even somewhat inexperienced, and we love the idea of someone wiser, someone knowledgeable, teaching us what we love to have done to us, even if we aren't totally sure ourselves.

But something is missing in erotica: active and enthusiastic consent. Verbal and enthusiastic consent simply isn't seen as sexy. But why can't erotica readers and writers demand that we change the language the genre from forceful to consensual?

The lack of active consent is a dangerous thing. It serves to contribute to the idea that consent isn't really necessary. It's bad enough for men to hold this view of women, but it's tragic for women to believe it of themselves. When the sex industry, including erotica, promotes the idea that consent doesn't have to be verbal or enthusiastic, it can damage women. At best, it might make a woman feel like saying "no" is all part of the fun. At worst, it can convince her that her partner's unwillingness to slow down or stop is a compliment rather than assault.

Consent doesn't equal boring sex. It doesn't mean a loss of fantasy. A woman can have her bodice ripped open and her trembling breast exposed every bit as easily with a "yes" as with "embarrassed, downcast eyes." In fact, consent opens up a ton of opportunities for creative sex-play. Consent is sexy as hell, and it's time that we insist on it in all aspects of our sex lives, from actual sex to the books we read in the tub.