Re: Guest Post: Can't spell "disrupt the peace" without Di.

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"I don't know if maybe it's the testosterone builds up..."

Hormones don't work that way, or the world would see adolescents of both sexes spontaneously combusting during otherwise-soporific high school classes.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 3:57 PM
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I'm only commenting now to keep Di from getting into a foul mood.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 3:58 PM
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"84 percent of women report they've done it simply to "keep the peace" at home." 84%?! Maybe that turns on what people mean by "keep the peace."

I imagine it also turns on what Newsweek means by "simply to." To paraphrase an earlier sentence in the same paragraph, people's motivations for doing things are complex. Newsweek's motivations for running this article aren't complex though; they like writing stupid things, and sex presumably sells.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:07 PM
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I recently went to a lecture on how, in the Renaissance, it was thought that women basically had to have orgasms from intercourse or else their bodies would sort of poison themselves, so men talked about sex as a grudging way to keep the peace at home; otherwise, she'd cheat on you or become a violent bitch due to "gre/ens/ick/ness." It was a great talk.

Obviously, The Patriarchy means that both situations are fundamentally misogynistic, but the change in positions shows what bullshit these narratives of "s/he's gotta have it, so I put up with it" are.

Also, I am feeling really really weird and awful right now, to the point of embarrassing myself just now in a meeting at work, due, I think, to gre/ens/ick/ness. Gentlemenz...


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:15 PM
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Perhaps by "keep the peace" they mean less avoiding huge arguments, etc, but more attempting to be Dan Savage's model GGG lover - not necessarily in the mood but amenable to satisfying a partner's desire.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:19 PM
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4.1: One of my favorite myths of the Middle Ages is the semi-popular belief that in order to conceive women had to orgasm. Thank you, Thomas Lacqueur, for your great opening remarks on this in Making Sex.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:21 PM
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I am totally immune to gre/ens/ick/ness. Like I was vaccinated against it or something.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:22 PM
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I apparently run out of one-on-one meetings, purple-faced and unsure if I'm dying or about to throw up, return having done neither, and then wish I'd done both as my face goes red, then white, then red, then white.

I think part of the problem is I'd just told an incredibly disturbing dirty joke to an administrator who came by for a minute and then started to feel horribly embarrassed in front of the colleague I was meeting with. I think that's it. Either that or I'm going to be dead soon of some terrible vertigo/flu disease.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:27 PM
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5: I was thinking that to get the numbers up to 84%, that had to be how the question was slanted. "Simply to keep the peace" sounds horrifying; if the question was more like "when it wasn't initially your idea but you talked yourself into it because it would make your partner happy" much less so.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:29 PM
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6: Desmond Morris did something on this, suggesting that it might be a factor. I saw it on TLC, which is always true, like when it told me about Nostradamus' secret Mayan Templar prophecies.

Here I make a joke about having illegitimate children.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:30 PM
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8: I think we need to hear the joke to give a fully informed opinion on the subject, no?


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:33 PM
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11: I was just going to ask what she'd eaten in the past 4-72 hours that might be off. Your approach sounds better.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:38 PM
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It's the sort of joke that said to the (woman) administrator that, ha, life is hard and weird, and said to the (male) colleague that, ha, AWB is an enormous pervert. It's going to come out eventually, I suppose, but the whole thing became so hideously uncomfortable that I still feel like I want to barf. Or I could go back into therapy.

It's too context-dependent to repeat, though.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:41 PM
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At the most, Bear, you're a middle-sized pervert. You're not an enormous pervert under 5'10" or so.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:45 PM
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It wasn't until I got to the end of the article that I focused on the fact that the 84% and other stats are from an ONLINE POLL.

WTF? How do you even get a publisher on the basis of an online poll?! (Don't worry, that's a rhetorical question.) It's comforting to know that the authors also conducted "five years of research," so they've got the anecdata to back up their statistically completely invalid survey.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:46 PM
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AWB, these things always seem worse to the speaker than to anyone else. I'm very curious to hear the joke though, context-driven though it may be.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:47 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:50 PM
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There's online polls and online polls -- it wasn't necessarily a selection of random people who happened on a website. I've worked with people who did online polls that purported to have a validly random sample of people.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:50 PM
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It would be really interesting to see the results of a well-constructed study on this question* and see what the breakouts are along lines of sexual identify, age, race, geography, religion, class, etc.

*"This question" being, of course, "How do you even get a publisher on the basis of an online poll?!".


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:51 PM
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18: Fair enough.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:52 PM
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16: The joke doesn't embarrass me as much as my inability to suppress my violent reaction to it, which included attempting to excuse myself by saying I must be getting the flu (which is in fact still how I feel), asking if I looked ill, and him sort of smiling and saying, well, no, actually, you do not look ill. I.e., I've got your number, you pervert.

What it makes me realize is that I make friends with women by exchanging these insanely personal stories and private jokes, but with men, I make a sort of guarded, let's talk about sports and work sort of self. The two do not combine well.

I don't mean to threadjack. By which I mean I'll be over there under a rock trying really hard to die.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:54 PM
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You could just have sex with the guy to put your mind at peace... Seriously, though, by Monday it will be forgotten completely. Go home, have a glass of wine, and think about something else.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:57 PM
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and him sort of smiling and saying, well, no, actually, you do not look ill.

probably means: 'you're a completely rad lady, and you tell dirty jokes, too! How awesome.'

rather than
I've got your number, you pervert.


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:59 PM
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But back to the article -- it was really, really weird. I didn't read it carefully enough to break down the claimed percentages, but the impression you'd get from it was that no one at all was having sex because they enjoyed fucking.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 4:59 PM
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I mean, that is supposed to be the point, right?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:00 PM
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If you want peace, work for justice it, baby.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:00 PM
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22: It would help, a lot actually, but he's sort of my boss and newly wed. Wine is an excellent suggestion, and sounds much better than paying someone to club me over the head.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:00 PM
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4: There was something similar in some book about the Victorians: to wit, official medical opinion denied the existence of the female orgasm but prostitutes were taught to fake it.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:02 PM
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The thing that jumps out to me at the question is that the 84% seems to apply to those that have ever done that. Even once. I've done that and I'm a guy. But an old flame of mine did it night after night over the course of a two year relationship. We both fall under the 84% (or at least I would if I were female), but these are simply not comparable situations.


Posted by: Trumwill | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:02 PM
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27: You could just embrace being kind of a weirdo. I realized recently that I try so hard not to be a weirdo around other people, but why do I bother, when in fact I love weirdos. He might think you're nuts, but as long as you're good at your job, your nuttiness only makes you interesting and human. Or something like that.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:04 PM
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Errr, to clarify, the old flame did that over the course of a two year relationship with someone else. I wasn't that guy. Though, to my horror, I was the one that set them up. I didn't know him as well as I thought I did.


Posted by: Trumwill | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:04 PM
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I don't mean to threadjack either, excpet to say that Desmond Morris also firmly believes there to have been an aquatic ape somewhere in the human ancestry, which I always found fascinating because I MUST HAVE AN AQUATIC APE.

Somehow I think this all ties together.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:04 PM
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25: I'm not sure what the point is, really. My point was mostly that my friend told me she has sex to keep the peace and I though, "Holy God, are you fucking insane?" and then I saw this article and 84% and thought "Jesus, don't tell me I'm the insane one [on this particular point]."

27: Trust me, hon. I know all the remedies for overcoming foot-in-mouth disease. (I.e., I drink lots of wine... )


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:06 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:09 PM
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OK, setting aside the online poll invalidity, and while I think that definitions of "keep the peace" may vary, I think the key to the very high response rate is question-phrasing in the form of "Have you done X?" Well shit, I've done lots of things. Are they normal, quotidian behaviors? Completely different question.

I have, just this very day, put away clean dishes to keep the peace, but this does not indicate that AB & I have a dysfunctional relationship wrt the dishes. It means that there was trouble brewing, and putting away dishes both simmered me down (I was actually the frustrated one) and represented a peace offering (as it turns out, AB didn't even realize that I was inappropriately/disproportionately frustrated, and so it was all unnecessary, at least as far as relationship-maintenance goes; the dishes still needed to be put away).

Sex is (somewhat) more fraught than dishwashing, but my point remains: people do all sorts of things for the wrong reasons - sometimes. It's only a problem if it becomes the norm.

None of this, of course, is to downplay women who feel pressured to have sex. It's to downplay that big, flashing 84% number.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:11 PM
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Is someone going to delete those?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:11 PM
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4,6:Venus of Urbino


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:11 PM
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I don't think apes are really the kind of thing you ought to "have".


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:12 PM
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33.1: To repost 35 in a form responsive to Di, I'll say that regularly having sex "to keep the peace" is, indeed, f'ed up behavior, but doing it once in awhile is not, imo, a big deal. I realize there are larger issues, but I think that we should recognize that sex is just one part of a marriage, and marriages are messy, complicated, and un-ideal situations.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:14 PM
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35: Okay, thank you JRoth. That's a construction of "keep the peace" that reassures me. Not "I had sex because he/she would have gotten mad if I didn't" but "I had sex because it helped break the tension on this totally unrelated issue by helping us reconnect." I'm good with 84% of women (and men) doing that from time to time.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:16 PM
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38: me, personally? you're saying I'm not ape-worthy?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:19 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:19 PM
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38: What if they wear a little hat?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:20 PM
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And a bellhop jacket? I believe those would be monkeys, not apes, and as such even more taboo.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:22 PM
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43: Sure, they can leave their hat on.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:22 PM
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Also, cleanup still needed on aisle 34.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:24 PM
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But women are complicated creatures: their sexual health is determined as much by their emotions as by their physical state, which might help explain why as many as 50 percent of women have trouble getting aroused.

Whereas men, seeing as how they lack emotions entirely, are perpetually in robust sexual health. Excuse me?

All right, much later it does say:

Which isn't to say that male ambitions aren't multifaceted: in a 2007 survey, Meston and Buss identified 237 distinct reasons humans pursue sex, ranging from attraction--the No. 1 reason for men--to "It's fun" to "I realized I was in love" (both in men's top 20 reasons). But the brain is the primary driver of female arousal, which means we tend to overanalyze and dissect, to the point that our motivations, in many cases, have very little to do with simple physical desire.

Gah. Such a mixed-up bag of evo-psych baloney, walk-back from evo-pysch, sweeping claims about "women"...I dunno. Hard to draw any kind of conclusion from this stuff without seeing more of the underlying work, but the "evolutionary psychologist" tag for one of the authors does not reassure me.

Honestly, one of the most interesting things I ever read about sex was in the intro to (IIRC) The Guide to Getting it On, where the (male) author mentions that he got more, more detailed, and more thoughtful responses to his book by far from women than from men. You could explore the nuances of that endlessly -- are men more socialized not to talk about sex? Do they not feel comfortable? Are they in fact just as likely, and the author was wrong?

I really wish Studs Terkel had done an oral history of sex. Is there anybody writing his kind of book any more?


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:27 PM
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Yeah, it would be helpful to have some disambiguation of the two. "Keep the peace" covers way too much territory. Have I decided to have sex that I didn't initiate and wasn't particularly interested in having that ended up being fine, or even pleasant? Sure! Have I decided to have sex that I didn't initiate and wasn't particularly interested in having because I felt like being game for a partner who'd often been game for me and my ideas? Sure! Have I decided to have sex that I didn't initiate and wasn't particularly interested in having maybe more than once in a row, after which I was like, eh, this is something we have to talk about or fix? Sure!

Some of those may sound more or less pleasant than others, but I wouldn't call any of them a crisis of misogynistic intimidation. If I felt anxious, afraid, depressed, or even deeply annoyed by any of the above, I'd want a new category to respond with.

IME, this kind of pattern emerges when my partner is someone who can't ask for what he wants--is embarrassed by talking about it or making clear sexual-initiation overtures. It can seem sweet at first, but if the only way you can express that you want to have sex is by manipulating someone into it, it's going to create a pattern that may be on its way to intimidation.

Of course, this "Keep the peace" thing also could be domestic rape. I don't want to call my 1st para examples rape, but it has a lot to do with how I felt about the situations. Had I been more scared by it, or angry about it, it might have turned into a rape situation. And it's a bit freaky that it's all under the same "motive" for sex.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:27 PM
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But the brain is the primary driver of female arousal, which means we tend to overanalyze and dissect, to the point that our motivations, in many cases, have very little to do with simple physical desire.

Men, on the other hand, are often even hornier after having been pithed.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:28 PM
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Guys, these are aquatic apes. They'd be wearing sailor suits.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:31 PM
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Okay, now I wouldn't have characterized any of the examples in 48.1 as "keeping the peace." I suppose I read that too narrowly -- keep the peace implying to me some threatened imminent breach of the peace, a loss of temper.

I wouldn't even have put "to keep him from sulking" in under keeping the peace. Which fits in with 48.3 and the manipulation angle.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:39 PM
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Yeah, I have to believe this is Newsweek doing a distorted take on the research. I can't believe 84% of women having had sex out of fear of conflict -- even for a one-off event, that seems high. But it's the most natural reading of how Newsweek describes the question.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:43 PM
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I was thinking of this guy! How much is that gorilla in the window?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 5:43 PM
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I'd want a prettier one


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 6:00 PM
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Guys, these are aquatic apes. They'd be wearing sailor suits.

Nah, Marines. Amphibious, y'know. OTOH, "deck apes". So there is that.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 6:27 PM
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Kind of hidden, but this is significant:

(Physical pleasure and attraction, say the authors, are still the most common reasons women say they have sex.)

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:10 PM
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If I'm going to fall off the damned "I Quit the Blog" wagon, I may as well go all-out-bender and offer you a guest post.

I feel remiss if I don't note that I'm quite happy that you fell off the wagon.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:12 PM
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I've definitely been in relationships where I had sex more than I wanted to in order to keep her from sulking, or growing more irritable, or whatever. There are definitely once-a-day women out there, and I'm no longer really a once-a-day guy, past the first month or so.

It's usually good once you get into it, but getting the energy up can be a pain if you're lazy.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:15 PM
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Clearly, Newsweek left out this town.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:19 PM
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Yeah, it was the line "But the brain is the primary driver of female arousal" that tripped all my BS wires (LB covered this in 49, but what the hell is the "but" supposed to mean?), after which all the questionable statements that came before (i.e., the rest of the article) were totally discredited.

Why are we googleproofing "gre/ens/ick/ness"?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:21 PM
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Surely the internet should make it possible for people whose libidos get ahead of their partners' to come together and work off some of the excess sexual energy. Everybody wins!


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:22 PM
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Brains have nothing to do with male sexual arousal. We never have sexual fantasies, nor anxiety. Hell, no brains at all, just hormone flavoured robots, that's why we can't do science IIR Summers correctly.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:24 PM
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61: it's called craigslist.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:24 PM
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Surely the internet should make it possible for people whose libidos get ahead of their partners' to come together and

...make cock jokes while correcting each others' grammar.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:24 PM
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63: Well, yeah, but somehow Newsweek still publishes this article, so there must be a niche there that still hasn't been filled.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:26 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:27 PM
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Subway etiquette question: During rush hour it's ok to ask someone to scoot over so you can sit down, right? I did so today and the woman got up giving me an evil look as did the woman sitting next to her. There was plenty of room, at least by rush hour standards, and a guy promptly filled the empty spot.

||


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:28 PM
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64: Yep.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:30 PM
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The thing about the Laquer book that struck me the most was the quick flip from 'women have to be tightly controlled and protected because they can't control their sexual urges' to 'women have to be tightly controlled and protected because they have no sex drive (unless they're perverted whores)'


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:31 PM
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67: Absofuckinglutely. People can be assholes about this but my method is just to smile and smile and be a villain. They need to move that shit over.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:34 PM
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Out here the bigger issue is people not moving to the back of the bus. "Oh, there's a step there? I can't possibly move back any further. Nor can I leave room for those who want to move back without shoving me." The buses are equipped with an automated recording telling people to move back; the bus drivers deploy it when their own pleas go unheard.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:38 PM
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71: Pittsburgh buses have that problem big time. I blame the transit system rules. To avoid a small delay loading buses downtown, you pay as you exit at rush hour. So, if you go clear to the back and the aisle gets packed (which it will), you basically have to smash through 20 people to get off.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:42 PM
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68 has great winnitude.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:42 PM
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73: Thanks.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:48 PM
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74: Now, it's Thursday early in the semester. Go to whatever bar everyone is at.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:49 PM
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Perhaps they should build buses with big trash compactor-type plungers that can be deployed down the aisle as necessary.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:49 PM
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Out here the bigger issue is people not moving to the back of the bus.

Here I always have the problem that the bus driver doesn't open the back door. And getting off the bus at the front door drive me crazy! That's where you get on, and the back door is where you get off the bus. But at least two out of three times I have to yell at the bus driver to open the door.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:50 PM
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A sex thread became a public transportation etiquette thread? Well, then, I guess I'm not really in the mood either.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:52 PM
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78 gets it exactly right.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 7:59 PM
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67: No, no, never. Public transport communication is physical first, and verbal second.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:00 PM
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Fewer than 84% of people move to the back of the bus just to keep the peace.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:04 PM
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70

Absofuckinglutely. People can be assholes about this but my method is just to smile and smile and be a villain. They need to move that shit over.

Yes, but if you are a fifty something guy and have the choice of crowding two other fifty something guys or two twenty something women aren't you expected to sit next to the guys?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:05 PM
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77: Happens a lot here too. On an express bus a couple of days ago, the bus driver didn't hear someone calling from the back of an articulated bus and she ended up a ton of stops away from where she wanted to get out.

And now, I have to go catch a bus.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:05 PM
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at least two out of three times I have to yell at the bus driver to open the door.

Ha. Now we have these buses where the door opens automatically when you step down. And yet I still reflexively call out to the driver. Embarrassing.

(In fairness to me, I spend a lot more time on trains and subways than I do on buses or trolleys.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:06 PM
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People shouldn't yell at the bus driver. I mean, really. Call out to him or her, okay, but yelling is deprecated.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:16 PM
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||

Healthcare News worth reporting

Ezra Klein although he has more posts about it and it's getting around

I think what this means is that if Blue States want single-payer (partial to start) the Feds will permit it, help pay for it, regulate it, empower states to negotiate as blocs, and not let the Red States get in the way.

Decent healthcare, and a colossal "Fed Up Fuck You" to Republicans. It also turns state politics into life & death. California obviously an example of why it might not work, but it is worth a try.

As a Texan I'm fucked, but good on the rest of you.
Maybe I'll move when the house is paid off.

|>


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:21 PM
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I always try to yell "Back door!" with a friendly, sing-songy intonation. Some people have a way of doing it that seems to convey, "Back door, you dumb fuck!" and that does bother me. A bit.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:21 PM
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87: And Otto brings the thread back to sex.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:22 PM
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I feel quite positive about friendly sing-songy intonations. I bet they teach that at Waldorf schools.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:30 PM
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78 Yeah, but if you don't Mary Magdalene might get angry.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:32 PM
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throwing my anecdotal weight behind silvana: my female friends with boyfriends pretty much unanimously want to be having sex more often than their boyfriends/husbands do. yes, it comes up.

How do they know?

I suspect that this reflects a social set where the men feel like initiating sex would be a sexist thing to do.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:49 PM
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Yes, but if you are a fifty something guy and have the choice of crowding two other fifty something guys or two twenty something women aren't you expected to sit next to the guys?

That is totally irrational. The average fifty-something guy is at least 30% wider than the average twenty-something woman.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:51 PM
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92: I'm going to just assume your figures are right so I don't have to google "ass wide age gender".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:53 PM
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So I apparently don't have a horrible disease; I'm fine. Googling "excessive blushing" offers a lot of sad websites that sell $27 audiobooks by dubious authors. Any advice?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 8:57 PM
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The average fifty-something guy is at least 30% wider than the average twenty-something woman

...where it counts.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:00 PM
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Any advice?

Avoid $27 audiobooks by dubious authors.

It sounds like you were flushing, which sounds like fighting off an infection. If you're serious that you think this might be going on beyond the awful joke-telling scenario, I'd avoid the wine and go for fluids (water), nutritious food, and rest. Calm. Breathe. Maybe this is how you react to stress. It's actually how I do, myself: I begin to feel like I'm fighting a fever or something.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:06 PM
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Further to 96: Except, of course, that you've obviously undergone stress before.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:08 PM
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So I apparently don't have a horrible disease; I'm fine.

Sounds as though you've either reässessed your gre/ens/ick/ness or, um, gotten therapy.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:08 PM
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I don't so much yell as sonorously proclaim a "Back Door". My voice, if nothing else, is sexy and commanding, so I tend to be obeyed. Onlookers often collapse, either in awe or a lustful ecstasy.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:12 PM
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Sometimes I like to get off the bus at the front if that exit is closer to where I want to go. If I want to be able to cross the street in front of the bus while the new passengers get on, I make sure that I'm in the front. If I'm running late, that's what happens.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:15 PM
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I'm weird about stress. When actual stressful things are happening, I'm fine. But then when other, less stressful but related things follow, I have panic attacks or severe blushing/dizziness. Today was a meeting I was concerned about, which turned into a meeting I was less concerned about, but which, in total, was about five hours of working with the same person in close quarters and somewhere into that fifth hour, whether it was the joke or something else, I just got sort of interpersonally claustrophobic and embarrassed to be alive.

About a month ago, I had a similar (but probably less perv-related) blushing/dizziness spell during an eight-hour faculty meeting with my entire department. Maybe it's just ten years of classroom teaching and working independently, but marathon meetings will eventually make me feel physically horrible. Even if I'm enjoying the meeting itself, like I was today, there came a point when I just had to get out of there.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:17 PM
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But I also had a panic attack on my way to band practice a few weeks ago, certain that I'd left my stovetop on and would come home to find I'd murdered everyone in my building. But I think that was just stress about spending so much of my time at band practice.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:18 PM
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99: Sonorous proclaiming is good. Sexy and commanding voices are interesting.

(I am imagining foolishmortal as a baritone now.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:20 PM
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Now, it's Thursday early in the semester. Go to whatever bar everyone is at.

It was a happy hour this week. Already over and done with.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:24 PM
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So diligent, that teo.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:25 PM
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The happy hours are kind of weird, but they allow the people who commute to school to attend, so it's a somewhat different crowd and it's nice to get to talk to some different people.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:27 PM
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101.1: AWB, I understand this. I don't know whether we're alike in it or not, no way to know, but I experience things that sound similar: it's like a form of severe agitation due to built up stressors, and I have to remove myself or be lost. It happens only occasionally when things are truly fraught, but it's not funny at all.

So how about just knowing this about yourself and trying to build in escape valves. For me it's just that I need some time to myself, to care for myself; it may involve physical things. But it's kind of an emergency call your body provides you, and that should be heeded.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:31 PM
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106: Join the army Go to grad school: Travel to exotic distant lands; meet exciting, unusual people and kill them don't have sex with them.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:33 PM
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I think these sort of things are completely worthless. people don't know why they are going to do something, and don't know why they did what they did.

The observer daemon is mostly just along for the ride, like a kid tagging along with their parent the rocket scientist.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:35 PM
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88: 87: And Otto brings the thread back to sex.
How could someone miss this...
47: I really wish Studs Terkel had done an oral history of sex.

To be followed by a sequel: Studs Terkel writes an anal history of sex.

max
['OK, I feel better now.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:36 PM
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Studs Terkel is a pretty good porn name.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:38 PM
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Studs Treacle would be better.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:39 PM
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The other part, I fear, is that my coworker is a very quiet, precise talker with strong eye contact who pushes all my cute nerd buttons. I think what I have learned today is that I can be in a room with him for four hours, but five is too many.

I don't mean to say that I was sitting there enjoying the company in some kind of creepy sexual or crushy way. I am perfectly capable of enjoying harmless coworker crushes and not being a total freak, and in fact was enjoying just such a crush earlier in the day on a different coworker. Whatever happened to me, it felt like suddenly being in hell. There I am, la la, having a lovely meeting like a grown-up, and then, nope, no more, suddenly I'm watching myself from outside myself, filled with horrible dread, unable to look him in the eye, turning red, and rushing to the bathroom. I stayed for about 15 more torture-filled minutes before leaving and walking a mile in the wrong direction.

I am also looking into therapists in my area. One looks promising!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:42 PM
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I love 88.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:43 PM
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The other part, I fear, is that my coworker is a very quiet, precise talker with strong eye contact who pushes all my cute nerd buttons

Oh, well, cripe, why didn't you say so? Not to him. I mean, relevant information. Changes everything.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:50 PM
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Does it? I think if I really had a problem with him, as I sometimes do with certain people, it would be worst at the beginning of the interaction and then taper off as I loosen up.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:52 PM
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awb: i would guess something related to cortisol/blood sugar combined with blood pressure changes. do you feel off if you miss meals too?

and exercise improves those things. that chlorosis thing make total sense


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:54 PM
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113: There I am, la la, having a lovely meeting like a grown-up, and then, nope, no more, suddenly I'm watching myself from outside myself, filled with horrible dread, unable to look him in the eye, turning red, and rushing to the bathroom.

And then violently sick. That's probably not purely psychological, although your reaction to it might be.

max
['Sounds like what happens when you eat a peanut or something and you're allergic.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:55 PM
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117 makes sense. Whatever personal problems I have, they're a lot worse if I'm overcaffeinated, underfed, and haven't had enough physical exertion.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:56 PM
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I'm just going to note that it took 4 hours for someone to pick up on that low-hanging fruit. Time was, at this blog-- well, anyway.

It was apparently a prosaic nickname, anyway.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:57 PM
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118 too. I should tell my coworker that I am fine having meetings, but am anaphylactically allergic to five-hour ones.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:57 PM
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121: I bet you've got a fair amount of company.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 9:59 PM
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True dat (as a labmate said to me over gchat an hour ago). I'm not sure I've ever been to a meeting that lasted longer than a couple hours, but I don't do many meetings. Though I've been to longer "workshops", I suppose. What's the difference between a workshop and a meeting?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:06 PM
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119: they're a lot worse if I'm overcaffeinated, underfed, and haven't had enough physical exertion.

Right. The call for a time-out wasn't just for psychological repair.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:07 PM
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108: So true. Unfogged is like virtual grad school.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:08 PM
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Agenda and contentiousness, maybe


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:09 PM
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120: I'm just going to note that it took 4 hours for someone to pick up on that low-hanging fruit.

I was asleep! And then I wasn't or it would've been 12 hours.

max
['Strange fruit.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:10 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:14 PM
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AWB's problem is the weather turning; she's noticed a chill in the air, and her limbic system is preparing for the long dysphoric months ahead.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:14 PM
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This was a "let's work on that document we're sending out" meeting. I am not qualified to be asked my opinions about most aspects of this document, but I do have opinions about it and my name is attached to the project in such a way that I care about how it goes out. OTOH, I've been very careful at this new job not to let anyone suck my precious time (I'm only supposed to work on campus a few hours a week) and am profoundly aware sometimes that there are some colleagues with whom I set very firm limits (I can work with you on that for one hour exactly on Tuesday; please be on time) and others whose desire for my opinion sort of flatters me enough that I'll give on the boundaries, and quite a lot in some cases.

And then there are times when you're just sitting there trying out different fonts for half an hour past Miller Time cracking dorky design jokes while also wishing you were dead. My complex emotions: Let me show you them.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:15 PM
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What's the difference between a workshop and a meeting?

You meet people at the former; you get work done at the latter. In theory.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:16 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:18 PM
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(I'm rarely around to see it happening in real time, so just a thank you to the blog denizens for endlessly, effortlessly handling the TOS cleanup. It's a true wonder to me that he has so much persistence.)

And now I'm off to sleep.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:27 PM
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58: There are definitely once-a-day women out there, and I'm no longer really a once-a-day guy, past the first month or so.

I knew someone like that. Her husband refused to do it for five months. (And I'm thinking: 'Hey, I like long hours and no vacation - I'll take the job.')

91:my female friends with boyfriends pretty much unanimously want to be having sex more often than their boyfriends/husbands do.

There is, apparently, an actual problem with 'lesbian bed death'. There is apparently, a large group of herterosexual women who could just not be bothered with the whole thing. The is also a large group of men with the same attitude, and all of those people are dating/married to horny people.

max
['Everybody dies frustrated and sad, and that is beautiful.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:29 PM
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129 is commonly also a problem. Why am I losing my mind? Oh yeah, spring. Why am I losing my mind now? Oh yeah, fall. One does wonder, though, when the causes probably include claustrophobia, tiredness, low blood sugar, sexual frustration, professional anxiety, fluorescent lighting, need for exercise, caffeine, change in weather, hypochondria, bad hair day, and not having gotten a paycheck, if one is actually, you know, a little crazy.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 10:31 PM
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The NYT wants me to feel good about myself.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 11:11 PM
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||

SWANWAR!

|>


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 11:38 PM
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109 is a great comment. Yoyo is a terrific commenter, I wish he came around more.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 1-09 11:54 PM
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WRT the original post: I don't think the worst interpretation of the factoid holds. I don't think that 84% of women have had sex because they felt that if they didn't, there would be some sort of rage or violence. But I don't find anything that surprising that 84% of women, and no small number of men, would have had sex without desire, out of a sense of obligation, knowing that it was easier than rejecting their partner.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:56 AM
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People shouldn't yell at the bus driver. I mean, really. Call out to him or her, okay, but yelling is deprecated.

Jesus, sanctimon.

When I am calling out from a distance such as the back of the bus to the front of the bus, and I am in a loud environment such as -- you guessed it! -- the bus, I would characterize the volume needed to make my voice heard as yelling.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:37 AM
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This online poll does not surprise me.

Unless "keep the peace" means avoid violence.

Has anyone here not had sex when their partner was fired up and you were not? Sometimes you have to take one for the team, despite being tired or not really in the mood. Hopefully, it doesnt happen too often and, hopefully, you start to enjoy it once you are in it.

I think I have shared this story before, but a law school friend once asked me if it was bad that she told her husband to just wake her up when he was finished so she could go pee. They had been drinking and started doing it, but then she felt soooo tired and just wanted to sleep.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:13 AM
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Yeah, "keep the peace" is a bizarrely ambiguous phrasing. I hope the actual research instrument made more sense.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:30 AM
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142: Thanks to new rules, the consent forms barely make sense anymore.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:33 AM
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and not having gotten a paycheck, if one is actually, you know, a little crazy.

Not getting paid can make you crazy.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:35 AM
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Molly: Di linked to some research by David Buss. Do we dismiss everything he says out of hand?

Me: Yes.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:38 AM
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Seems like 145 would have been more useful coming 12-15 hours earlier.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:52 AM
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142: My research instrument makes sense. Laydeez.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:00 AM
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147: Try getting that instrument past an IRB before you look for the laydeez.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:01 AM
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144:

BG: You typed in a "p" instead of a "l".


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:10 AM
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149: Why not both? "Not getting plaid can make you crazy."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:14 AM
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I GOTS TO GET PLAID.


Posted by: OPINIONATED GANGSTA | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:50 AM
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Speaking of sex and disruption, I just saw that the guy who is accused of blackmailing Letterman is the producer of 48 Hours (not the Eddie Murphy one). I think he would have gotten paid if Chris Hansen would have agreed to stage of direct confrontation.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:56 AM
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Just because you're a playa, doesn't mean you won't get plaid.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:58 AM
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Has anyone here not had sex when their partner was. fired up and you were not?

I guess I just can't see referring to this as "keeping the peace.". Indeed, if I heard a partner refer to sex with me as "keeping th peace," I'd be offendedwhereas "I wasn't really in the mood, but hey, it's a give and take thing" is totally okay. I don't think the phrase necessarily implies violence, but anger or irritation or something similar.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:00 AM
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154 really pisses me off.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:54 AM
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Get a room.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:01 AM
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155: Wait, seriously pisses you off? Why?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:07 AM
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See. Just like Moonlighting.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:08 AM
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I read 155 as playing off the last sentence of 154.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:09 AM
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It seems that nobody else even comes close to DK's shock and appallment at this survey. Fortunately this has not led to an acrimonious 900-comment thread based entirely on differing definitions of the phrase "keeping the peace".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:21 AM
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Yet.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:22 AM
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Wait, seriously pisses you off? Why?

Just do what you have to do to keep the peace, Di.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:32 AM
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160: Too many commenters paused to ask themselves "what would a bonobo do?"


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:32 AM
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I'm pretty shocked and appalled at the article -- or, at least, I think the article is trolling. But given the trolliness of the article, there's not much to talk about in terms of its results.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:33 AM
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It's Newsweek. Do they even know how to spell "troll"?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:35 AM
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160: Forgive me for speaking out of turn, but for me the striking (if not appalling) thing about the prevalence of the "to keep the peace" answers is their consistency with the declining reputation of what I suppose a social scientist would call pair-bonding. Everywhere one looks (and by "one," I mean "I," and by "looks," I mean "click on at Arts & Letters Daily or whatnot when I should be working"), there seems to be another slice of resentment, disappointment, frustration or outright contempt for somebody's spouse, spouse-equivalent or ex or the very fact of having a spouse, spouse-equivalent or ex. Perhaps I am unduly sensitive to this sort of thing, having had as my primary pair-bonding role models my parents, who hated one another with all the venom, name-calling, throwing-out-of-the-house and wall-punching that a couple of white Boomers could muster, but the blogging, essaying and surveying classes seem to be disintegrating at a respectable clip.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:43 AM
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Forgive me for speaking out of turn,

Flippanter, you ignorant slut.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:45 AM
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Indeed, if I heard a partner refer to sex with me as "keeping th peace," I'd be offended

Part of "keeping the peace" is not letting your partner know that you're keeping the peace.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:47 AM
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167: Mom?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:49 AM
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160: I think the discussion about "keeping the peace" would be similar for any significant marital activity--cleaning, childcare, cooking, maintenance, where to go on vacation, educational choices, job choices, housing choices etc. It can be problematic for any of them. I don't see anything that special about its use in conjunction with sex.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:51 AM
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168: True. Faking orgasms is nuthin', faking sincerity and enthusiasm 24/7 is truly hard work.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:53 AM
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I sometimes think that Apo is my long lost twin.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:55 AM
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Seems like 145 would have been more useful coming 12-15 hours earlier.

Actually, I think it is still pertinent.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:00 AM
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I agree with 170.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:04 AM
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It seems that nobody else even comes close to DK's shock and appallment at this survey.

See, JRoth made me feel better about 84% by offering a spin in which "Keeping the peace" could mean using sex to keep the peace about other matters. Which, cool. "We are always fighting over who should make the bed and whether the bed even needs to be made and then we realized, hey... bed... and engaged in our peace-keeping mission."

But now I'm back to a sense that a lot of people really do "keep the peace" in ways that I find really squicky personally. I mean, yeah, everyone here is going to agree that "I had sex so he wouldn't hit me" is a very bad thing. But I feel sort of lonely in the position of seeing "I had sex so he wouldn't get into one of his moods" as a very bad thing.

Probably because I'm a girl and over think things. But I see "I wasn't in the mood, and didn't really want to, but he really was and I wanted to make him happy" as significantly different from "I wasn't in the mood, and didn't really want to, but he really was and so I did it to keep the peace." I mean, it's more or less the exact same thing -- except that it seems to reflect a different attitude about the partner.

In conclusion, Emerson was right all along.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:08 AM
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Actually, I rather like my spouse.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:08 AM
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The reason I'm not offended by the OP poll is that I assume it's bollocks. If 84% of women were having sex to prevent their partner from throwing a hissy fit it'd be bloody terrible, but I suspect that it's much more a GGG thing than an emotionally abusive and immature male thing. Or maybe not.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:09 AM
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175= me, if that wasn't obvious.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:10 AM
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170: Wouldn't you think of genuine mutual enthusiasm as an important part of sex, in a manner that it's really not part of doing the dishes? I pretty much never actually want to clean anything -- in the absence of social pressure and consideration for others, I'd live in an unsanitary hellhole. So anytime I clean at all, I'm doing it, in some sense, to "keep the peace". But that's not a problem with respect to cleaning -- enjoying it, or spontaneously wanting to do it, hasn't got any relationship to the purpose of cleaning.

If I felt that way about sex, but frequently or consistently (rather than occasionally) went ahead with it to "keep the peace", on the other hand, I'd think there was something really screwy and unhappy about my marriage.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:11 AM
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And yes to 175.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:14 AM
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But now I'm back to a sense that a lot of people really do "keep the peace" in ways that I find really squicky personally. I mean, yeah, everyone here is going to agree that "I had sex so he wouldn't hit me" is a very bad thing. But I feel sort of lonely in the position of seeing "I had sex so he wouldn't get into one of his moods" as a very bad thing.

Maybe the difference is whether the accommodation always runs in one direction. Most of us have our ups and downs, and accommodating a partner's down periods is part of what makes a relationship work. That's not the same thing as one partner's having to put up with the other partner's acting like a petulant child all the time.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:15 AM
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I suspect that it's much more a GGG thing than an emotionally abusive and immature male thing.

It makes me uneasy not solely from the construction of emotionally abusive and immature male (a/k/a "my type") but also from thinking it reflects poorly on the woman "keeping the peace." I'm being very judgmental here, I know.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:16 AM
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181: I don't have a problem at all with accommodating one's partner. It's specifically the choice to frame that accommodation as "keeping the peace."


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:18 AM
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There's also the 'very occasionally' versus 'habitually' axis. I can see having sex 'to keep the peace' in the sense that squicks Di out on fairly rare occasions -- I can't come up with an actual memory of having done so myself, but I wouldn't be surprised if I had and it was no big deal. If that's a typical portion of your sex life, on the other hand, it seems really unhappy to me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:19 AM
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||

Would someone with access to Wiley Interscience journals be willing to e-mail me the pdf of an article?

If yes, please e-mail me at the linked address.

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:20 AM
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But Di, it is so easy for me to imagine being the one who would be subject to 'getting into one of my moods' for want of sex. There's a whole host of frustrations that go along with being the one who wants more. I could try to draw on being a mature self-possessed good sport, but I also wouldn't be surprised if a perceptive partner saw me falling into a mood.

Since I can see myself being on the other side of this, and hope that we would both enjoy the remedy (once it got going) I'm going to be pretty slow even to rate the phenomenon as a problem.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:22 AM
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185: What article?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:24 AM
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183: Perhaps the framing is more problematic if one's baseline experience includes long-term disharmony? It just doesn't hit me that way at all, and I routinely make minor accommodations that I'd freely characterize as "keeping the peace."


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:25 AM
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I'm perfectly happy with judging people. I agree wholeheartedly that "Di's type" guys are douchebags, and the women who put up with them would ideally DTMFA, but I'm kind of sympathetic to not wanting to bail on an otherwise good thing just because you feel the need to have sex when not fully in the mood. I've done it to keep a partner happy or preempt incipient grumpiness. The sex is generally not awesomely great, but it's not a chore, either.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:25 AM
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179, 184: Yes, I probably overstated. There is probably a continuum with sex at one end and doing the dishes at the other, but some items such as job choices, living choices, procreation choices are on the "sex" side of the spectrum. But also, 1) Not everyone necessarily loves their spouse romantically, and 2) I'm old(er).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:26 AM
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186: See, if I decided to have sex with you because I saw that you were getting into 'one of your moods', Megan, I'd think of it as trying to cheer you up or wanting to help you relax or whatever. Once I'm "keeping the peace" I'm sort of in a mental space of "Geez, she's in another one of her moods and now I'm going to have to fuck her so I won't have to deal with it."

Yes, I know, I'm very sensitive about language.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:28 AM
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Moby,

I'd rather not put the name up on the web, but if you e-mail me, I'll tell you.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:28 AM
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with sex at one end and doing the dishes at the other

I can't imaging being that coordinated.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:29 AM
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imagine


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:29 AM
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186, 191: That's the thing, it's such an ambiguous phrase. When I'm thinking of it as an unhappy situation, I'm thinking of someone having sex just to keep the peace. Not enjoying it, not getting anything out of it as sex.

The thought "Heh, he's just humoring me. But he'll get into it once we get going," wouldn't seem like the same sort of thing at all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:34 AM
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192: Sent e-mail.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:35 AM
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I'm with 186. I've often been the more sexually interested partner, and when one starts to feel like one is doing all the initiating, it can make one feel a bit down and unloved. It would be insulting to me if I discovered that my partner thought of that desire for love as "one of my moods [eyeroll]," but I'm sure that's happened.

The problem for the more desirous partner is to come up with methods of seduction that do not come off as petulant or moody, when one may, in fact, feel petulant and moody as a part of sexual frustration. Maybe the gender difference that bothers Di is that a man may not need to come up with effective methods of seduction because her arousal is not as important for getting the act going (and hey, she might get into it later). So he might just demand it or manipulate her into it. As the female more-desirous partner, one has to get a bit creative.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:36 AM
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Perhaps the framing is more problematic if one's baseline experience includes long-term disharmony?

It's also conceivable that some of the long-term disharmony was a product of the framing. Which is neither here nor there for purposes of this discussion. My framing is right for me -- I'm just trying to sort out how much of an outlier I really am, and it sounds like the answer is more than I thought.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:37 AM
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197: It's really not limited to concern about force/manipulation. It's really a sense of, if you are just thinking of it as "keeping the peace," why are you doing it? It implies to me that you see your partner as someone who will disrupt the peace over sex. Which, if true, is a pretty good reason not to do it. And if not true, is a pretty uncharitable way of thinking of your partner.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:43 AM
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There are perhaps women who are better at demanding sex than I am. IME, asking for it means I will be denied. Even in the heat of passion, if I ask for it, I get sent home alone. But we all know I date assholes.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:47 AM
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...I decided to have sex with you ..., Megan

Now you're talking.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:47 AM
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199: To a point maybe. Sooner or later, depending on temperment, etc., the other party is going to start to feel rejected unless there is some obvious reason for saying no that doesn't translate to "I'm not attracted to you".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:48 AM
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186, 197: Neither of these sound like a different response to the same situation; they sound like a totally different situation than what's creeping Di (and me) out. Being the more desirous partner, if there's any kind of a mismatch at all, means you're going to have to do some seduction, enticing your partner into sex when it wasn't their idea, and ex ante they would have been just as happy watching the news. If they end up happy about the sex, regardless of whose idea it was, happy is happy.

Doing it "to keep the peace" sounds like having sex when you aren't into it at all, because the consequences of not having sex are more unpleasant than the sex. Now, everything's a continuum, I can certainly see circumstances where the more desirous partner thought they'd successfully seduced the less desirous partner but were instead being tolerated (or where the less desirous partner thought they could get into it enough to enjoy it but instead tolerated it), and if it happens once in a while, that's not awful.

But if you thought your partner was having sex with you that they viewed as a chore frequently, because the consequences of refusing were unpleasant, ,wouldn't you think that the relationship was all fucked up and something needed to get fixed?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:50 AM
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200: We have dated very different assholes, it seems.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:51 AM
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Wait, AWB. I haven't decided you date assholes, mostly because your stories are so far from mine that I don't have the reference points to make decisions. But besides that, your 200 isn't uniformly true, is it? That doesn't happen with your ladyfriends, does it? (From what little I've gleaned.) You date boy assholes, but not girl assholes, to my distant understanding.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:51 AM
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199: Well, I think the other part of this that may be making people skeptical is that a large percentage of the population is pretty sexually repressed, or ashamed of wanting it. So instead of saying, "OMG, I want to fuck my husband all the time," one might say, "He wants it all the time. You know how men are. If he doesn't get it, he gets in that mood." It flatters us to be desired more than it flatters us to desire. And that goes the other way too, I'm sure. I don't know many men who openly talk about how badly they want to fuck their girlfriends/wives. But I do hear a lot about how badly their gfs/wives want them and how they put up with it.

It's so often said with a smirk that maybe we're not taking it seriously enough as a private question in a survey, which one may not be as likely to use as a place to brag about how desirous their partner is.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:53 AM
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because the consequences of not having sex are more unpleasant than the sex

Hmmm. LB may have just hit on why I've never been a peace keeper. The sex was *always* more unpleasant than the consequences of not doing it...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:53 AM
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something needed to get fixed?

Yeah, his attitude.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:55 AM
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205: I shouldn't paint them all with the same brush, because not all of them reject me out of ego or assholery, but, actually, this is something I've noticed in my girl-relationships as well as my boy-relationships. My libido is really obnoxious. I'm pretty seducible, under the right circumstances, but I am a terrible seductress. Seriously, the pits. I express needs way too obviously, and even people who've loved me and wanted me to be happy have sent me home alone when I do it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:01 PM
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200: maybe you are unattractive.


Posted by: ella | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:01 PM
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It flatters us to be desired more than it flatters us to desire.

Well put.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:02 PM
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You people are sick.

Sex should only be between a husband and wife who are trying to have a baby. It is normal for the man to want to have sex. The woman is willing to perform this vile act so that she may fulfill her God-designated role to be a mother.


Related: until 1984, a wife who had an affair was presumptively unfit to have custody. A man did not suffer such a presumption. (Bc men naturally are filled with base desires to perform vile acts with any and all females.)


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:03 PM
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It's pretty weird that AWB seems to have problem that about 100,000,000 guys assume they could solve.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:04 PM
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209:

Humping my leg while Br and I tried to eat was over the line.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:05 PM
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Well, I think the other part of this that may be making people skeptical is that a large percentage of the population is pretty sexually repressed, or ashamed of wanting it.

To desire is to risk disappointment; to be desired, though, is pretty terrific all around.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:05 PM
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210: Far too many people here know AWB to be a pretty curly-haired blond for that to be the explanation.

209: If you think it is your approach, well, you'd know better than me. I think the only solution is to film yourself and ask YouTube if they would do you as you try different techniques.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:05 PM
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216.1
Absolutely.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:09 PM
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but I am a terrible seductress

I could be wrong, but from the way you've described the issue I suspect you be a very successful seducer if you were a guy, but the take charge approach from a woman makes a greater percentage of people uneasy. Which is why I think Robert is wrong that you have a problem millions of guys assume they could solve.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:19 PM
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Hell if I know what's going on. Frex, when, earlier this summer, I finally hooked up with a good friend I'd been flirting with for almost a year, he was all with the "OMG I fantasize about you all the time" and the "I wanna do [this and that] to you" and the making out and fooling around. We call a car to go back to my place and continue discussing it while screwing around on a dark street. And then I say that I want to do [this and that, standard stuff], and, suddenly, the car comes and he shoves me in by myself, saying he didn't want to threaten our friendship. Motherfucker!

We're still friends, and we still talk about how attracted we are to each other, but it's sort of indefinitely deferred until we figure out why I have to be totally passive for him to be able to go through with it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:19 PM
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218 is true. I would make a totally awesome dude. Laydeez.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:20 PM
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220: Fist pound, bro! Up top!


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:21 PM
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I'll admit to being intrigued as to what [this and that, standard stuff] means.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:22 PM
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Did you tell him that you totally promised you'd still respect him in the morning?

Seriously, that sounds really maddening. Reasonable people (over twenty or so) should figure out what they're up for doing before the serious making out starts. Maybe if there's some real emotional dilemma going on, but "I don't want to screw up our friendship" is the kind of thing you should be able to work through ahead of time.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:23 PM
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But if you thought your partner was having sex with you that they viewed as a chore frequently, because the consequences of refusing were unpleasant, ,wouldn't you think that the relationship was all fucked up and something needed to get fixed?

In all honesty, I'm not sure I'm all that far from that situation now. We've been dealing with long-term caregiving and family issues that have beaten my wife's libido up to the point where she'd probably be just as happy replacing most of our sex life with a little more time to read/sleep/watch movies. And yeah, it's fucked up, but the fucked-uppedness is more a life problem than a relationship problem, and we cope as best we can.

It's also conceivable that some of the long-term disharmony was a product of the framing. Which is neither here nor there for purposes of this discussion. My framing is right for me -- I'm just trying to sort out how much of an outlier I really am, and it sounds like the answer is more than I thought.

Another thought, possibly tangent to the discussion: how much peace is the right amount? My wife and I fought kind of a lot for years, and we still flare every now and then, but we both decided a long time ago that we like being together and that we're pretty committed to surviving the ups and downs. We do a pretty good job of complementing each others' strengths, at the cost of a certain amount of pain around our respective weaknesses. My parents seldom fight, but they also seldom challenge each other, and I prefer our model to theirs. Which is not to say that any relationship can be made to work with effort--it takes two people to make a relationship work but only one to wreck it--but a certain amount of disharmony doesn't necessarily mean incompatibility IMO.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:25 PM
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I said "assume."

But I think AWB describes a pretty gender-neutral dynamic; I think AWB describes really aptly perfectly what it's like to be a consistently more desirous guy in a relationship. One of the problems is that if you're consistently at a higher level of desire, you can't just ask for sex without creating tension or offense, but the other always person can. So unfair.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:26 PM
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AWB seems to have problem that about 100,000,000 guys assume they could solve.

But would actually reduce them to a pile of quivering Jello if they faced it for reals.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:27 PM
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219: I don't suppose, playing devil's advocate here, that it's possible his concern really was with not threatening the friendship?

(No, I don't really buy it either, because if he thought sex would threaten the friendship, surely he's considered the possibility that continuing to talk about sex without ever fucking following through might put some strain on the friendship. But maybe he is legitimately conflicted from that angle?)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:27 PM
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Reasonable people (over twenty or so) should figure out what they're up for doing before the serious making out starts.

Maybe. But when you pull out charts, graphs, and stop watches, that might ruin the mood.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:29 PM
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Buck finds my PowerPoint presentations very arousing, thank you very much.

Oh god, maybe he's just tolerating me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:31 PM
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Pulling out charts and graphs can only enhance the mood, Will. Spreadsheets send it over the top, ignited too fast.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:31 PM
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203

... Being the more desirous partner, if there's any kind of a mismatch at all, means you're going to have to do some seduction, enticing your partner into sex when it wasn't their idea, and ex ante they would have been just as happy watching the news. ...

Or you could just accomodate yourself to your partner's preferred rate.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:32 PM
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In all honesty, I'm not sure I'm all that far from that situation now. We've been dealing with long-term caregiving and family issues that have beaten my wife's libido up to the point where she'd probably be just as happy replacing most of our sex life with a little more time to read/sleep/watch movies. And yeah, it's fucked up, but the fucked-uppedness is more a life problem than a relationship problem, and we cope as best we can.

Oy, my sympathy, and good luck working through the life-issues.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:32 PM
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223: We've talked about it a lot. He's in love with me, but afraid that being with someone who really actually wants him (who is not just putting up with his own troublesome libido) will make him act out in some way that will cause him to lose my love. It's a neurotic thing about wanting to be desired, but, never having had full access to someone who unabashedly desires him, fears that he will not react honorably or sanely to that situation, due to anxieties about masculinity, blah blah blah. He's actually sort of a typical football/fratboy douchebag who has the vocabulary to spell out what's wrong with that, without feeling confident about his ability to be anything else.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:33 PM
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One of the problems is that if you're consistently at a higher level of desire, you can't just ask for sex without creating tension or offense, but the other always person can.

There are various ways of working this out between partners, but if one can't work it out, best to call the relationship off, isn't it? I don't see why someone would stay in a relationship for the long term if this remained a problem.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:34 PM
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Presumably, you are keeping your eye out for other options in parallel with this guy figuring himself out?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:34 PM
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Oh, 234 without reading NPH's 224. It wasn't intended as actual advice or an attack or anything.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:36 PM
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224.2 Absolutely. One of the best non-relationships (Hi 219! I feel your pain!) I ever had was with someone I could really get into some great arguments with. About important stuff, about stupid stuff. We were intellectually quite well-matched, which made the back-and-forth exhilarating rather than maddening. Sigh, I miss that schmuck.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:36 PM
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199

... It implies to me that you see your partner as someone who will disrupt the peace over sex. ...

So how long do they have to do without before they are entitled to complain?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:37 PM
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My sex life got lot more spicy after Megan turned me on to:

http://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/books_be


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:37 PM
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235: I am always seeing other people, yes.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:38 PM
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234: Well, this, exactly. Mismatched libidos happen, there are lots of ways to manage that (including Shearer's suggestion that the hornier partner should just deal with not getting laid as much as they'd like.)

But if one partner is having unwanted, chore-like sex frequently, or the other feels rejected all the time, that seems to be getting into an area where it makes sense to think if the relationship is going to survive. (And there can be enough other good stuff in a relationship to make it worthwhile even if the sex is unhappy. But that seems really unhappy to me.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:39 PM
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233: ...typical football/fratboy douchebag...

I assume this is a highly condensed summary that tilts negative because all the caveats would clutter up your comment past what us 6-chunkers can handle. Still, if he's wrapped up in masculinity issues there is very little chance you can sleep with him without crossing the madonna/whore line unless you are willing to enter a serious relationship, and who wants to be friends with a whore*?

* I do. Laydeez.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:40 PM
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238: 3.65 months. Don't you have a copy of the manual?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:40 PM
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218

I could be wrong, but from the way you've described the issue I suspect you be a very successful seducer if you were a guy, but the take charge approach from a woman makes a greater percentage of people uneasy. ...

I am not convinced. Particularly when we are talking about a 100% failure rate.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:42 PM
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238: I would distinguish between "complaining" and "disrupting the peace." See also 234.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:43 PM
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Maybe. But when you pull out charts, graphs, and stop watches, that might ruin the mood.

You joke, but the first GF I had sex with used to time how long it take from the minute we had sex to the moment she could coax a new erection from me, in the hopes of improving it - apparently, she wasn't pleased with the times I provided (or whatever, we where teenagers and both of us probably stupid in different ways). Hooray for years of performance anxiety!


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:43 PM
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232: Thanks. We're working on it. The illnesses and deaths should be mostly over for a while, so now it's just a matter of figuring out how to be quasi-step-parents to two teenage boys whose father is inept but territorial.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:44 PM
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246 is horrifying/hilarious. Horrilarious.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:45 PM
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246: Food rewards are often effective for training that sort of behavior -- perhaps cheese, or bits of liver would have helped. (IOW, wow that's obnoxious.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:45 PM
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So now it's just a matter of figuring out how to be quasi-step-parents to two teenage boys whose father is inept but territorial.

Wow. That sounds incredibly difficult. Good for you for being willing to step up to the challenge. The boys will appreciate it.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:47 PM
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246: Holy crap.

234, 241: I basically agree. Yet, AFAICT, this seems to be an incredibly widespread problem that no one talks about, and I wonder what percentage of actually-existing long-term relationships would go away if people took the rule in 234 seriously. 50 percent?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:47 PM
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246: I'm a bad person for wanting to ask what your best time was, right?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:48 PM
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239: You're welcome, BR.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:48 PM
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He's in love with me, but afraid that being with someone who really actually wants him (who is not just putting up with his own troublesome libido) will make him act out in some way that will cause him to lose my love.

God, I would have had trouble not rolling my eyes at this. (This is not intended as a slight on AWB by any stretch.) But jeez. If you're in a relationship and you feel like acting out, speak up and say "I feel like doing X, and we need to deal with it." To preemptively can someone over a hypothetical future moral failing seems ridiculous.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:49 PM
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what percentage of actually-existing long-term relationships would go away if people took the rule in 234 seriously

Dan Savage would be left bored and idle.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:49 PM
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245

I would distinguish between "complaining" and "disrupting the peace." See also 234.

So it would be ok if 84% of women have had sex in order to keep their husbands from complaining?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:51 PM
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251: I admit that my default response to relationship problems is to break up with the person (and yes, I am currently single, why do you ask?), so a lot of existing relationships would probably have to dissolve if they followed my rules.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:51 PM
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To preemptively can someone over a his own hypothetical future moral failing which he is self-aware enough to predict but not manage seems ridiculous.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:51 PM
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256: No.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:52 PM
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259: But, we can still refuse to do this dishes?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:53 PM
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246:

Did she also keep a chart for how long you were able to have sex? Bc the chart she was keeping isnt really important without that info.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:54 PM
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I don't see why someone would stay in a relationship for the long term if this remained a problem.

I believe "for the children's sake" is the canonic explanation.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:54 PM
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252: about half an hour. But I really didn't enjoy it.
That was in the peak of my teen years, and she let me know about the friends who would have instant succession of sex sessions, and the whole thing really left its mark (I had about a decade of believing I had a deficient libido).

I'm ok now, though, so that's all right, I guess.


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:55 PM
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||

There's a mosquito in my office and it keeps biting me. Really aggravating.

|>


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:58 PM
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To preemptively can someone over a hypothetical future moral failing seems ridiculous.

Ridiculousness is surprisingly common in humans.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:58 PM
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Off to dinner! Other statistics may be provided later.


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 12:59 PM
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Number of Awls who are off to dinner: 1.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:00 PM
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Number of pronounceable Awls who are off to dinner: 0.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:00 PM
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Oh, you mean The Other P. Awl?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:03 PM
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I think I screwed up my joke. Is there a commenter called The Other Paul, or is it a different proper name? I can't think of who the first Paul would be.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:04 PM
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I've always been glad to have partners whose desire could be satisfied by oral sex. If I was feeling pressure to have an erection all the time, things would not work at all.

I would distinguish between "complaining" and "disrupting the peace."

I really think that in the domestic sphere, the word "peace" isn't being used to mean "absence of physical violence".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:05 PM
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"absence of resentment", maybe.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:08 PM
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I really think that in the domestic sphere, the word "peace" isn't being used to mean "absence of physical violence".

I really think that I've explained several times in this thread that I am not talking about physical violence. At all.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:09 PM
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What's the difference between "complaining" and "disturbing the peace", then?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:10 PM
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Your tone of voice, mister.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:10 PM
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geeeez! How many times do I have to ask? Do you not CARE?


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:15 PM
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274: Whether or not you are wearing pants.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:16 PM
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Pwned YET AGAIN by James B. Shearer. (256/274)


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:18 PM
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Look, I think it's perfectly fine for a party to a relationship to express his or her dissatisfaction with the frequency of sex. You discuss it, you try to find ways to work it out. I'd probably prefer to frame that as "raising the issue" rather than "complaining," I guess. But I really don't like the idea of having sex with someone just so you don't have to listen to them gripe/put up with their moods/suffer whatever other unbearable consequences are presented. It's a very subtle distinction, I guess, between doing it so that your partner won't feel unhappy and doing it so that your partner's unhappiness won't bother you.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:19 PM
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279: What about doing it so your partner doesn't buy a bass boat to deal with the extra free time?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:21 PM
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It's a very subtle distinction, I guess, between doing it so that your partner won't feel unhappy and doing it so that your partner's unhappiness won't bother you.

Huh--this makes it sound like the distinction in your mind is not in the behavior of the partner wanting more sex, but in the mind of the partner wanting less: it turns on whether the partner wanting less cares about the unhappiness of the partner wanting more. Which, yeah, if you're in a relationship in which you don't care about you partners unhappiness (or only care about it insofar as it has direct consequences for you), that's a bad situation and a shitty relationship. But it's also something different than what's been discussed in this thread.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:23 PM
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280: If you didn't otherwise want to do it, wouldn't you be thrilled to have him buy the boat and get out of your hair?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:23 PM
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282: Depends. A bass boat is pretty expensive (for one nice enough to channel sexual frustration) and, unless you've got an extra garage, having the boat on a trailer in the yard could cause problems with the neighbors and certain peer groups.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:26 PM
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But it's also something different than what's been discussed in this thread.

That's just because apparently no one understands me. It's what I've been trying to discuss all along. I do care about it from both angles, of course -- if the demander really is creating unpleasantness for the peace-keeper so that the peace-keeper will have sex to make the unpleasantness stop, that's crappy. If the peace-keeper is having sex from a contemptuous attitude of "Fine, I'll do it to get you to go away," that's crappy too.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:28 PM
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Sounds like someone has been doing some boat shopping recently.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:28 PM
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285: I'm actually looking at kayaks as I don't have room for a bigger boat and could use some exercise.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:31 PM
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284: Di, I think we can all agree that if someone is in a relationship in which they don't care about their partner's unhappiness (except insofar as it might create headaches for them), that's a crappy relationship. There's really nothing about that to discuss, is there?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:33 PM
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287: Sure. Sorry to have wasted your time.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:37 PM
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Although the discussion was more to what describing your motivation for sex as "keeping the peace" means and how that 84% is possible when it seems pretty clearly crappy to me.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:39 PM
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Sorry--I didn't mean 287 to come across as dismissively as it did. Let me rephrase. When you said in 284 that this is what you've been trying to discuss all along, what about it were you wanting to discuss?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:40 PM
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290 before I saw 289. I think the 84% just clearly shows that the respondents in the survey meant something else.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:42 PM
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Is that what "keeping the peace" conveys?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:43 PM
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I'm nitpicky about this kind of language use. Not because I doubt that people say stuff like that without really thinking through the implications or connotations, but because I think the words we choose to describe things reflect and also shape the way we think about them.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:46 PM
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292: per 291, clearly no, or the number wouldn't be anywhere near 84%.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:50 PM
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264: Are you making any effort to keep the peace?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 1:55 PM
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(Sorry if I got a little snippy, but M/tch stopped commenting far too soon.)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:01 PM
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The fact that you have your stopwatch out probably isn't making it any easier for M/tch to be ready to comment again.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:04 PM
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I endorse 293, but wrt 292, I think "keeping the peace" expands to include "promote general harmony in the relationship." The latter term in my mind means having sex when you aren't raring to go because it's a bonding thing and your partner is horny. It also includes going to dinner parties with people your partner likes but you only tolerate, or dressing up to go to a fancy restaurant even though you find both dressing up and fancy restaurants kind of a pointless charade.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:04 PM
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M/tch stopped commenting far too soon

That's what happens if you don't masturbate a lot as a kid.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:07 PM
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I'm actually looking at kayaks as I don't have room for a bigger boat and could use some exercise.

I have a pretty excellent exercise kayak for sale, but shipping might be an issue. But yay kayak! What are you looking at?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:08 PM
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279

... It's a very subtle distinction, I guess, between doing it so that your partner won't feel unhappy and doing it so that your partner's unhappiness won't bother you.

But as Landers has been saying, shouldn't your partner's unhappiness always bother you, at least a little?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:12 PM
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I think the words we choose to describe things reflect and also shape the way we think about them.

Di is Benjamin Lee Whorf!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:14 PM
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300: I don't know yet, as I've mostly just been seeing what comes up on Craigslist. What I'm probably going to do is take a class first. I've only tooled around on very small ponds and I'll try the Mon before I buy.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:14 PM
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302: Pseud blowing is deprecated, teo.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:20 PM
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304: Blowing is peace keeping.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:25 PM
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301: Right. And I am saying there is a difference between not wanting your partner to be unhappy and not wanting your partner's unhappiness to bother you. Maybe that difference is self-delusion, in the sense that some believe altruism is really just another form of self-interest.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:33 PM
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306, me


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:34 PM
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302: Off to Google so I can find out whether I should be flattered, insulted, or a little turned on...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:35 PM
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298: Togolosh has it right. "Keeping the peace" also includes dealing with the great toilet lid & paper position, etc. Lots of that is no big deal necessarily involving firearms, knives, or clubs.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:36 PM
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It is worth noting that the phrase "keep the peace" may not have even been in Buss and Meston's survey, or if it did, what context it occurred in. It may be the journalists summary of another statement, or something taken out of context.

If the survey really did say "I have had sex too keep the peace" with a radio button next to it and no other information, we have no idea how the women who took the survey interpreted the phrase. Maybe most read it like Di does, maybe only a few did. Maybe there was an earlier question that said "I have had sex to keep my lover from exploding with rage" and people taking the survey read "keep the peace" as something meaning something contrastingly milder.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:36 PM
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Pretend that my first sentence there was grammatical. In fact, pretend it used a nice, elegant parallel construction.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:38 PM
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"Have you had sex so that your lover would stop complaining about it on Unfogged (or facebook?)"


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:38 PM
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Have you ever had sex to reward your partern's nice, elegant, parallel sentence structure.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:40 PM
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And omission of '?'


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:40 PM
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In our society there is an expectation that a man is the person who pesters the woman for sex, and the woman is the person who appeases the man's pestering. I think a large number of women would answer "Yes" to a question like that just because they feel like that must have happened to them sometime, or else there's something wrong with them. And a large number of men would say "Yes, I have expressed annoyance and frustration when my wife didn't want to have sex, and it caused some arguments.", a larger number than have actually done that.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:41 PM
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there is a difference between not wanting your partner to be unhappy and not wanting your partner's unhappiness to bother you

So, 84% of women don't care about their partner at some point, and this is what bothers you?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:41 PM
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315: Which is more or less AWB's point in 206, I guess.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:44 PM
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316: I'm beginning to think I just have some weird psychosexual hangup that I should work through in therapy rather than on an Unfogged thread... That 84% of women at one time or another have wanted their partner to just leave them the fuck alone does not shock or disturb me. That they have sex with him to accomplish this goal does. I can't quite figure out if this is a prudity concern (Egads! Sex that's not for love!), a feministy concern (Egads! Women reducing them to sex objects in order to appease men), or just general ueberidealist wishing everyone was having happy, loving, mutual sex.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:50 PM
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Off to Google so I can find out whether I should be flattered, insulted, or a little turned on...

The last, of course. As always.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:50 PM
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318: And disregard all the studies showing Unfogged threads are much more effective than therapy?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:52 PM
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was were


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:54 PM
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317: Well, except for my suggestion that men's responses would differ from women's responses.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:54 PM
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318: It's not just you being weird, I find the idea kind of gross as well. I wouldn't worry about the 84% number, though -- there's just no way at all to have any idea what people thought the question meant, so it's probably not as bad as it sounds.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 2:59 PM
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319: Indeed, some people can only get turned on if they pretend that they are famous figures from the linguistic relativity debates. Fortunately, thanks to the internet, these often geographically dispersed people have been able to find each other, and thus nowadays many times a year you can find "Whorfies", "Berliners", and "Sapirians" gathering at conventions to meet and frolic.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:00 PM
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The phrase may have been selected precisely for its ability to simultaneously gross people out and get a high positive response rate.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:06 PM
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FWIW, I didn't have much of a reaction to the piece (because it was the sort of reductive bullshit I'd expect from Newsweek), but I'm in agreement with 318.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:08 PM
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325 is good, though it may be that the journalist's paraphrase was chosen for maximum pull rather than the actual survey question.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:09 PM
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I'm in agreement with 318

That I have weird psychosexual hangups?


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:19 PM
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Don't we all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:20 PM
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Yeah, that's a given. I'm in agreement with the set of concerns.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:22 PM
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The important thing with psychosexual hangups is to use wide straps so you don't restrict blood flow.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:24 PM
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My psychosexual hangups are depressingly mundane.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:24 PM
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I'm still trying to figure this thread, and yes, I've read it twice.

The relevant quote seems to be:

More than half of women under 60 still suffer from low sex drive, and a quarter are unable to orgasm.

That presumably translates into '>50% of women 18-60 have no libido'. I have no idea if that non-orgasmic quarter (last time I heard the number it was 22%) overlaps perfectly with the 50%. I would suspect mostly, since sex probably isn't that entertaining fun sans orgasm. I am guessing (actually, I am knowing) that this isn't true for men, and so we're gonna have a problem.

That 84% number is then high in that situation, but not absurdly so. (I am thinking the large collection of 'reasons they have sex' is mostly the set of rationalizations for having sex for non-sexual reasons.)

The women who are not in that >50% group have entirely different issues.

max
['Have I missed anything?']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:28 PM
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Some of my best psychosexual hangups are black.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:28 PM
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That presumably translates into '>50% of women 18-60 have no libido'.

This seems kind of implausible, doesn't it?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:39 PM
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333: max, you just went from "low sex drive" to "no sex drive." You know better than to make that mistake.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:47 PM
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336: And then from "no sex drive" to "non-orgasmic"! Wow!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:52 PM
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333, 335: Depends, obviously, on how "low sex drive" is measured. I thought I had a low sex drive when I was married, and then Lo! I got divorced and had lots of sex drive. And then I stopped dating for a while and my sex drive is surely lower than it was immediately post-divorce, and may well be about what it was when married, but it seems perfectly fine to me.

It wasn't intuitive to me that "keeping the peace" necessarily reflected mismatched libidos. That seems to have been obvious to everyone else, though.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 3:56 PM
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So what do people consider a "normal" sex drive? Assuming you had a perfectly matched partner, how often would you want to do it?


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:03 PM
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Ah, so 339 comments in we get to the crux of this particular biscuit.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:07 PM
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I don't know, It would probably get old it it was more than twice a week.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:10 PM
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For the record, JP, 339 is a different biscuit altogether.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:11 PM
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But from the same batch at least.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:12 PM
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how often would you want to do it?

Do what?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:14 PM
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339 is a perfectly fine question but it reminds me that 246 sounds horrible and like the sort of experience that could leave you messed up for a long time afterward.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:14 PM
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344: Bake biscuits.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:15 PM
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344: The Horizontal Mambo. The Nasty. The Wild Thing.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:18 PM
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345: Yes--and with your first partner, too. "Will all women time my refractory period?"


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:19 PM
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339 asks two different questions.

I really do want to have a sex at least once a day, maybe more. But I've never found a partner willing to do anything close to that, at least after the first month.

Who knows from "normal." Even though I personally want sex more, I guess I'd never say that someone in a LTR who wants to have sex twice a week has an abnormally low sex drive. However, I'm guessing the actual frequency of sex is much, much less than twice per week in most LTRs.


Posted by: Martin Van Buren | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:20 PM
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347: Those sound like interesting biscuits. Do you have recipes? Maybe I should just google those names.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:20 PM
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350: Big Nasty Biscuit


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:23 PM
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350: Ask Molly. Women often know more about biscuits than men.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:26 PM
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I'm just speculating that "low sex drive" is sort of like "too fat" -- women get unrealistic perceptions of "normal" and the judge themselves and are judge mercilessly. Men, too, I assume.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:28 PM
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353: It seems like there is a big incidence of woman feeling hurt/insulted/inadequate if their husbands ever masturbate.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:33 PM
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353 -- We might be able to make progress on that problem if people would post their real numbers, but of course almost no one will.


Posted by: Martin Van Buren | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:34 PM
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Will anyone speak up for Sophocles's claim, that losing your sex drive is like being unshackled from a madman?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:36 PM
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So what do people consider a "normal" sex drive?

Alvy Singer's Therapist: How often do you sleep together?
Annie Hall's Therapist: Do you have sex often?
Alvy Singer: Hardly ever. Maybe three times a week.
Annie Hall: Constantly. I'd say three times a week.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:39 PM
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Alas, thus freed, the madman continues to stalk you so that you are ever but a glance, a whisper, a touch from becoming again ensnared.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:40 PM
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Will anyone speak up for Sophocles's claim, that losing your sex drive is like being unshackled from a madman?

Ah, Fontana Labs, a nation commentariat turns its lonely eyes to you.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:46 PM
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318

... I can't quite figure out if this is a prudity concern (Egads! Sex that's not for love!) ...

So how would you feel if 84% of women said they had had sex with their husbands because they wanted something (other than sex) out of them?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 4:48 PM
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Assuming you had a perfectly matched partner, how often would you want to do it?

Does this perfectly matched partner have a sixteen-year-old sister?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:07 PM
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Assuming you had a perfectly matched partner, how often would you want to do it?

and also related to other questions raised:

what is the proper etiquette/moral behaviour if you just 'need to get off', but don't want the whole production associated with seduction, building up, foreplay, sex, etc.? When, basically, the partner is around and available, but what is needed is just masturbation?


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:10 PM
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339: So what do people consider a "normal" sex drive? Assuming you had a perfectly matched partner, how often would you want to do it?

Doesn't it depend a lot on all kinds of external circumstances? Including how long the couple has been together, whether either or both of them is just plain tired this month, or this year, and so on?

In my experience, in longer-term relationships, a person's sex drive doesn't operate in isolation from his or her partner: you might have more frequent sex with one partner, less frequent sex with another. There's sex-drive-with-him1, and there's sex-drive-with-him2. I don't think I can identify something I'd call "my" sex drive such that ...

Oh never mind. A couple of times a week once the initial blush of passion wore off. I'd probably feel pressured after 4 or 5 years if a partner wanted to have sex every night.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:11 PM
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OK, the literature isn't yielding the answers as readily as I had hoped, but here's (subs req'd) a start on the question of what is "normal":

987 hetero US women living with a dude for > 6 months said:

1. That they think about sex "with desire"

Never 8.3%
Sometimes 75.9%
Daily 15.8%

2. That they did the following stuff during the past month (%)

Sex Masturbation
None 8.3 56.9
(subs req'd) a start on the question of what is "normal":

987 hetero US women living with a dude for > 6 months said:

1. That they think about sex "with desire"

Never 8.3%
Sometimes 75.9%
Daily 15.8%

2. That they did the following stuff during the past month (%)

Sex Masturbation
None 8.3 56.9
1-2/wk 37.2 10.5
Several/wk 24.1 4.5
Daily 1.1 1.6

Orgasm w/partner
None 9.7
25-50% 23.1
51-75% 20.1
>75% 35.7

Limitations to study, in opinion of review that led me there:
"Low response rate. Restricted to women living in relationships. Did not examine length of relationship"


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:14 PM
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364: They forgot to control for the level of awesomeness of the partner.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:19 PM
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Doesn't it depend a lot on all kinds of external circumstances? Including how long the couple has been together, whether either or both of them is just plain tired this month, or this year, and so on?

Definitely, I'd say. Both of the sexual relationships I've had so far had a rate of roughly once a day; in one this began to feel to me like rather a lot, while in the other it felt reasonable. The first was a long-term relationship, and the second was a short-term fling, which I think explains most of the difference, although there were surely other factors too.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:20 PM
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336: Great big factors.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:22 PM
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363 suggests that's what's needed is not a spreadsheet but a database. Sometimes there's a one to one relationship, sometimes, one to many.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:22 PM
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Don't bother pretending that last comment made sense. It's not worth the trouble.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:25 PM
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368: Probably just one record per relationship and control for clustering by person for persons with multiple records.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:25 PM
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If we're depreciating our own comments, 367 is both an over-used Monty Python reference and sexist.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:26 PM
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336: 333: max, you just went from "low sex drive" to "no sex drive."

For practical purposes (particularly for the anorgasmic) 'low' may well be 'no'. I figure Group A, anorgasmic, low (to no) sex drive, doesn't like it; Group B, fine orgasms, low (to no) sex drive, is doing it for relationship maintainance, Group C, anorgasmic, high (relatively to other women, possible to men) sex drive, sucks to be them big time, Group D, horny. I guessing Group B would be the ones with a serious problem of mismatched sex drive, and there seem to be rather a lot of them.

max
['With numbers these round and poorly defined, the difference between 'low' and 'no' is invisible.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:35 PM
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369, 370: Yeah. But there's still no good way to come up with a 'how often' figure for any given relationship, at least in my experience. I've had long-term relationships in which we went for months and months having sex every couple of weeks, then picked up again. Then maybe fell off again. What would you want in order to sum up the sex frequency overall, an average? (N.B. I am not a statistician.)

I'll be bold: there's no such thing as an ideal relationship! Even the best-matched partners are going to see some periods when one of them is just, like, not in the mood for stretches at a time, or when they're both horny as hell for each other for a while.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:36 PM
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364: I'm surprised that masturbation only passes sex at the daily level. I tend to date dedicated wankers, maybe.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:42 PM
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374: Those masturbation numbers sound pretty dubious to me. Actually, all the numbers sound kind of dubious, but especially those.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:46 PM
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339

So what do people consider a "normal" sex drive? Assuming you had a perfectly matched partner, how often would you want to do it?

In men (by which I mean me) this number is quite age dependent.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:48 PM
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374: Am I reading the figures wrong? Masturbation also passes sex at the "none" level, but that's not very surprising.

It doesn't surprise me that at the 1-2/week and the several/week level, masturbation falls off. Yep, maybe togolosh tends to date dedicated wankers. This is making me laugh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:53 PM
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There's no category between "None in the past month" and "1-2 per week" (that is, 4-8 in the past month)?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 5:58 PM
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The masturbation numbers don't seem specially bizarre to me. In what direction do you think they're weird?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:01 PM
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I agree with MVB that on average daily would be what I would choose in the absence of all other confounding variables. But, unfortunately, not always with the current partner.


Posted by: F | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:02 PM
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378: Yes, and the numbers also add up to way less than 100%, due to my failure to escape the < signs. Let's try this again.

2. That they did the following stuff during the past month (%)

Sex Masturbation
None 8.3 56.9
<1/wk 29.4 26.5
1-2/wk 37.2 10.5
Several/wk 24.1 4.5
Daily 1.1 1.6

Orgasm w/partner
None 9.7
<25% 11.4
25-50% 23.1
51-75% 20.1
>75% 35.7


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:03 PM
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No sex: 8.3%
No orgasm with partner: 9.7%

I thought the second number would be much higher than the first.

Good news!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:06 PM
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In what direction do you think they're weird?

"None" seems awfully high. (Doesn't it?)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:07 PM
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And this is the review article of which I spoke. It's specifically about how intercourse frequency changes in women with age, but it has a lot of references to studies that would probably have more general intercourse frequency/desire data. The tables I pasted were from one of those references picked somewhat randomly.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:08 PM
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Parsimon is laughing at you, teo. But why?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:11 PM
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So, for women who were in relationships with a partner longer than 6 months, 75% report sex fewer than 8 times per month, and almost 40% have sex either not at all or less than 4 times a month. Given that people are likely inclined to over-report, rather than under-report, these numbers that's pretty low. It's kind of a fools errand to hope have sex every day in a hetrosexual relationship, and even my sense of a "normal" sex drive of a few times a week turns out to be only true of the horniest quartile of women. Awesome.


Posted by: Martin Van Buren | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:11 PM
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Sorry Martin. Maybe it's the older women bringing these numbers down (the participants were aged 20-65)? I'll try to find more optimistic data later.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:13 PM
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Parsimon is laughing at you, teo. But why?

What can I say? I'm a funny guy.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:16 PM
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...laydeez.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:16 PM
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OK, same article, here's an age-stratified table

""How often did you think about sex with interest or desire? This includes times of just being interested, daydreaming or fantasizing, as well as times you wanted to have sex.""

20-35 36-50 51-65 Total
Not at all 3.2 7.0 13.5 7.2
Once or twice 19.1 18.6 31.9 21.8
Once a week 30.4 31.5 31.2 31.0
Several times a week 27.8 29.9 16.0 26.0
Daily 19.5 13.0 7.3 14.0


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:17 PM
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I can paste tables in the Unfogged comments All. Night. Long. Oh, yeah.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:21 PM
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Given that people are likely inclined to over-report, rather than under-report, these numbers that's pretty low

Huh. They didn't seem low to me at all. For a LTR anyway.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:24 PM
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Frequency of Thinking About Sex With Interest in the Last
Month, by Age Group, % of Weighted Sample
Age groups
Frequency            20-35      36-50      51-65      Total
Not at all                 3.2            7.0              13.5               7.2
Once or twice       19.1            18.6            31.9            21.8
Once/week           30.4            31.5            31.2            31.0
Several/week       27.8            29.9            16.0            26.0
Daily                          19.5            13.0            7.3            14.0
Total                          35.0            42.0            23.0         100

On preview, I see Otto just posted this table. But I pasted in all those "&nbsp;"s, so I'm posting this anyway.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:28 PM
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It will probably turn out that the formatting only looks right on my browser.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:30 PM
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385: Parsimon is laughing at you, teo. But why?

Whoa. I am not. I was chuckling at the thought that togolosh dates dedicated wankers.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:33 PM
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It's okay, parsimon. You can laugh at me.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:38 PM
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390 -- In some ways, that table may be even grimmer. 50% of the 20-35 year olds and 56% of the 35-50 set don't even THINK about wanting sex more than once a week, with a significant portion thinking about sex far less than that.

At least there's a glimmer of hope in that awesome 20% of under 35s and 13% of under 50s who think about sex every day. Still, it looks like women who can maintain horniness into a long-term relationship are a distinct minority.


Posted by: Martin Van Buren | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:38 PM
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It will probably turn out that the formatting only looks right on my browser.

Looks good to me.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:38 PM
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What's the data set here? NHSLS, or something else?


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:41 PM
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396: For crying out loud, I wasn't. Jeez. Huh?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:41 PM
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Just teasing. Relax.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:42 PM
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I was and continue to do so.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:48 PM
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Feel free.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:50 PM
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I was laughing with Teo.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:51 PM
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I wasn't laughing.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:54 PM
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Did I say with? I meant at.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:55 PM
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Then you have a funny cough.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:55 PM
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407 to 405


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:56 PM
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That's what they tell me.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:57 PM
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You get that from smoking clowns.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:57 PM
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Did I say with? I meant at.

"Near".


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:58 PM
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397: Still, it looks like women who can maintain horniness into a long-term relationship are a distinct minority.

Women who can, or women who do? There's probably a difference, and I'd bet it depends in part on their relationships with their partners.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 6:58 PM
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I don't really like the word horny. Or I can't take it seriously. I just picture humping dogs and leering Austin Powerses.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:01 PM
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On the other hand, I also have trouble taking sex seriously, so maybe it's not really the word horny.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:02 PM
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I'm surprised this thread has gone this far without anyone even mentioning the stereotypes/myths about "satiation" in sexually-satisfied women. (I.e., a woman will only desire sex frequently if she's not getting good enough sex; a woman who is "fucked well" won't want or need any more for a week or two.) I mean, yeah, it's false (universally??), but it's pervasive.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:04 PM
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Maybe you need to watch a better class of humping dogs.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:05 PM
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So that I can learn to take them seriously?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:06 PM
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416 to 413-4


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:06 PM
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Or so you can get more dogs. Whichever.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:07 PM
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I like my dogs hot.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:08 PM
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From "The Social Organization of Sexuality",
A lot of data on frequency.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:09 PM
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Ah, Nathan's mention of the NHSLS (which I don't think I had heard of) leadsme to what appears to be a goldmine. Crapload of data in this book, which I guess I've seen around plenty (maybe it was a text for some popular class in college?) now that I see the cover. The data start in Chapter 3. In particular, see the masturbation frequency table and the sex frequency table.

OK, off to run. Enjoy.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:13 PM
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421: No exactly a raving endorsement of matrimony as a boinking enabler.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:13 PM
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I'm going to follow up on 412: What I'm after is the thought that it's probably not unusual among women as well as men that if you think about sex daily, but for any number of reasons aren't in a position to engage in it (with your committed partner), you are possibly on the road to having an affair.

It doesn't seem to me unlikely that a not insignificant number of people wind up suppressing their sexual desires (not masturbating much at all, say), because they really don't want to do that, have that affair. So the statistics we're seeing, reporting on women's horniness, isn't reflecting what they might be engaged in if they were free, so to speak: it's all keyed to the fact that older women in particular are more likely to be in committed relationships. This would go for men as well.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:17 PM
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Damn. I'll stop typing those tables in if they're all on Google Books.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:17 PM
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379: My limited sample suggests the more than 2/week numbers ought to run about 50/50 masturbation vs sex. Perhaps it's that I don't consider it cheating or competing. And I tend to date horndogs.

414: Sex is absurd. I can't be with a partner who doesn't laugh at it. During is even better.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:24 PM
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If they keep a blooper reel and have Bob Saget making jokes over the clips, you may want to reconsider.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:42 PM
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I gotta say I agree with 426.2. Not that you have be laughing all the time, because that would be weird.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:48 PM
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415: it's pervasive

Is it? That's not a stereotype I'm familiar with.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:52 PM
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429: I was afraid to say anything and sound out-of-touch, but yea, I never heard of it either.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:56 PM
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That is one of the many things I have never heard of, as well.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 7:58 PM
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I had never heard of it either, but I totally plan to use it if I ever get into another long term relationship. "You were jus so amazing last month, honey. I'm not sure when I'll be able to handle more of the good lovin'!"


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:01 PM
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I plan to use a related version whenever somebody gives me homemade food that isn't very good. "That soup is so delicious, I can't eat another bite."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:04 PM
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Yes, pervasive. Come on. You're not familiar with the stereotype of the perpetually horny woman=woman whose lover isn't good in bed? That's the same thing. It's why it's usually seen as a source of shame for a man if his wife/lover frequently desires to have sex with him.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:34 PM
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Maybe it's regional.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:36 PM
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436

I've never seen "Desperate Housewives", but from what little I've heard about it I assume it's based on a similar premise.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:37 PM
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This seems way too similar to "oh, your dog didn't die, we sent him to a farm out in the countryside."


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:40 PM
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You're not familiar with the stereotype of the perpetually horny woman=woman whose lover isn't good in bed? That's the same thing.

I've heard of the "undersexed" woman, whose lover doesn't want to have sex often enough, so she looks for it elsewhere.

It's why it's usually seen as a source of shame for a man if his wife/lover frequently desires to have sex with him.

That sounds utterly bizarre.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:42 PM
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437: no, actually, this isn't one I first heard from my mom. Thankfully. (At least I hope not?)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:42 PM
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It's why it's usually seen as a source of shame for a man if his wife/lover frequently desires to have sex with him.

That's just loopy.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:43 PM
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"undersexed" can refer to quality as well as quantity, ned.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:43 PM
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"Oh, honey, my lust for you didn't die, you were just so good it went to a farm for a while."


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:44 PM
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Goddammit, I'm not defending this. Just noting the stereotype. Which I refuse to believe I'm the only one who's aware of.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:44 PM
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Can you give an example of such a woman appearing in a work of popular fiction?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:45 PM
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440: yeah, I guess there should be a "too" in front of "frequently". Like, more than once a week or so.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:46 PM
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444: dont you think I would have already if I could? 436 was the best I could do. Although I'm sure there are plenty, that's just exactly the sort of recall I'm usually very bad at.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:47 PM
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I'm off to google....


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:48 PM
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god I hope my wife doesn't check my search history...


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:50 PM
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Peg Bundy in Married With Children?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:51 PM
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As I recall, Peg Bundy's husband is denying her sex, leading her to beg for any sex at all. He isn't constantly providing her with low-quality sex that leads her to keep demanding more and more.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:53 PM
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Alright, I have heard of this. In fact, I had an ex (who was a somewhere between melodramitic and straight up loony) who would accuse me of basically saying that he was bad in bed if I expressed desire.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:53 PM
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But Peg's horniness is seen as a referendum on Al's manliness.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:54 PM
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Isn't it Peggy?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:54 PM
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Peg is the type of old-fashioned name that hip parents aren't reaching for. C/f Bertha and Bernice as well.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:55 PM
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Can you give an example of such a woman appearing in a work of popular fiction?

My girlfriend in Canada?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:55 PM
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453: Yes, but as I recall (and IMDB "memorable" quotes are backing me up) that Al usually called her Peg.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:57 PM
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451: exactly! thanks you. I've known lots of women with ex's similar to yours. and lots of men who would ridicule other men along similar lines if they became aware of his girlfriend expressing a desire for sex. (I've even been the victim of such ridicule (though my girlfriend at the time claimed she wanted to have sex because she liked having sex with me, not because I wasn't satisfying her.))


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:58 PM
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456: Only because he was exasperated with her and her perpetual horniness.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:58 PM
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Pretend 457 had grammer.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 8:59 PM
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Peg Bundy in Married With Children?

Wrong--that's exactly it, with her hair like it was in bed.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:01 PM
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I'm going to bed.


Posted by: Brock Lnaders | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:01 PM
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I find 460 confusing.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:02 PM
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I think Brock is going to find Peggy Bundy's hair.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:02 PM
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Peggy: Gee Al, I don't know about you, but I'm horny as hell.
Al: Well, so am I, but you don't see me bothering you with it, do you?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:02 PM
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Their relationship was sort of sad.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:03 PM
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You kids today with your short skirts and your Al Bundy references. Why, when I was a kid, all we had was Mr. Roper, and we were grateful.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:04 PM
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Oh, that Jack. Having to pretend he's gay in one of the thinnest pretexts for a show ever.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:07 PM
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465: Yes, a lot of people I know (such as my wife) utterly loathed it. It really did help launch Fox Primetime, however. (Along with The Tracy Ullmann Show with its little spin-off.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:12 PM
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Wait, Married with Children was on Fox? But I watched it growing up, and our town didn't carry Fox until the Simpsons had been on for a couple years already. It must have been in syndication while it was still airing.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:14 PM
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So, if I want more frequent sex, I should be crappier at it? Is that one of those things like where you are supposed to insult women to hit on them?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:14 PM
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Boy, will we ever figure out what women want???


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:15 PM
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469: I have a vague memory of the Simpson and Married with Children being on Fox Sunday with a half-hour slot between them when the tried to launch really crappy shows like "Herman's Head" (which had the same actress who voices Lisa Simpson) and "Get a Life". This would have been 1990 or 1991, if I'm not wrong.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:22 PM
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I think I watched a lot of TV that year, because I remember both those shows pretty well. Sam Kinnesin's death put an end to Herman's Head, IIRC. And I just remember one particular episode of Get A Life about them being visited by an alien named Spewy.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:24 PM
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And I had a computer with a 20K hard drive and that was the shit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:26 PM
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I remember a book I read then, about these kids from the future visiting their selves in the present. The future kids brought a video game that would explain everything, but it required one gigabyte of memory. But of course they couldn't play it because there was no such computer yet.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:29 PM
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Another quote more directly in line with Brock's stereotype:
Peggy: Honey, I complain about you're performance all the time... you don't care. Sometimes you don't even wake up.

I'm fascinated that there seem to have been remakes of it in a number of different countries: The Croatian version of the show is called Bračne vode (Marriage waters).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:30 PM
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really crappy shows like "Herman's Head"

Hey! I liked "Herman's Head"!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:31 PM
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"Herman's Head" is to the Simpsons as "Wings" is to "Cheers". I think. It's been a long time and the show did not last long.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:33 PM
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if I want more frequent sex, I should be crappier at it?

Only if you're married.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:39 PM
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Or dating a Canadian.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:46 PM
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THE SEX IS TERRIBLE! AND IN SUCH SMALL PORTIONS!


Posted by: OPINIONATED WIFE | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 9:47 PM
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I guess I can just look this up at wikipedia, but I can never remember the original Fox line-up around Tracy Ullman and Married with Children. I think the other two shows were short-lived, as were most of their replacements, and one of them might have had Paul Reiser in it, but I can't think of another. Gary Shandling, maybe? I never watched his show, wherever it was on.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:00 PM
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I'm pretty sure Wings was on quite a bit longer than Herman's Head. I guess I could look that one up too.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:01 PM
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I've never heard of Herman's Head, but I definitely know Wings. This tells me that the former can't possibly have been as popular as the latter.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:03 PM
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The Fox Sunday show I was thinking of was Duet, Paul Reiser was not involved.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:04 PM
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Chalk me up as another one who has not heard the stereotype in 415.

Frequency of Thinking About Sex With Interest

For some reason this tickles my funny bone. Thinking About Sex With Interest, indeed. What would thinking about sex with disinterest look like?

I do wonder, though, whether there is any correlation between frequency of daydreams/fantasizing and frequency of actually having sex. They don't necessarily seem connected to me, in part due to the energy levels and privacy generally required.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:05 PM
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My point was that both Herman's Head and Wings were new shows given very nice time slots slots by their networks. Maybe "American Dad" would be a better comparison than Wings, but that seems wrong because one of the props is still the Simpsons.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:07 PM
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Wings ran 1990 to 1997 and I remember seeing it in reruns. Herman's Head ran 1991 to 1994, which is about twice as long as I remember it running.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:08 PM
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very nice time slots slots by their networks

I don't remember what night Wings ran, but I remember associating the Herman's Head time slot with shows that never lasted, like those storefronts where the businesses keep changing.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:10 PM
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What would thinking about sex with disinterest look like?

This.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:13 PM
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486: I don't have access to the article from here, but someone who does can pull the exact phrasing of the question. I meant to paste it in, but must have missed it on the copy and paste.

There are a lot of tables in that article that, sadly, I do not know how to read (having to do with logits and cross-tabs and such).


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:17 PM
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Wings was Thursday, during the 90's "Must see TV" era when NBC managed to not suck for at least 30 minutes every Thursday for many years running (or when I had very poor taste).


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:21 PM
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415

There is definitely a stereotype about a women who isn't satisfied by her guy looking elsewhere. Which is the same as a women who is satisfied by her guy not looking elsewhere. Haven't heard of the variation where the satisfied women loses interest entirely.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 10:44 PM
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494

Reading Laqueur; it's quite a trip.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:01 PM
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Aggh, Dodger Stadium liveblogging. I am so pissed at this team right now despite an unbelievable season that all of my emotional responses are confused. Love, hate, fear, or anger?


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:04 PM
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I mean, the one thing we've been able to do all season long is beat Colorado like an oppressed wife keeping peace with her husband. And now?


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:12 PM
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Well, anger, fear for the future, and anticipatory despair have taken over. Thank you, emotional substitute Los Angeles sporting team. Win tomorrow!


Posted by: rohbert halford | Link to this comment | 10- 2-09 11:53 PM
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If the stereotype in 415 really exists (and if Brock and Heebie both think it does, I'll buy that it's out there) it's about the most depressing thing I've ever heard. It seems to imply that there are women out there supressing their libidos so as not to insult their sex partners. Surely that's got to be counterproductive, if the goal is for anyone to be happy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 7:15 PM
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498: I think that's the stereotype that drives a lot of the anxiety about dating a sexually desirous woman. Sure, it flatters your ego that someone wants you. And then you get paranoid that you're not satisfying her. I am surprised, also, that this comes as such a shock to people here.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 7:23 PM
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What's weird is the idea that you're not satisfying her every time you have sex, because you aren't providing her with a high enough quality of sex, and yet she continues to want to have sex with you constantly. If it was just a matter of her being desirous of you because you don't have sex often enough, that would make sense.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 7:35 PM
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What 500 said. Fear of not being able to provide enough is different.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 7:49 PM
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499: Honestly, I'm shocked because it is both so stupid and crazymaking for anyone who believes it, but come to think of it there are definitely jokes out there that make more sense if that's the underlying assumption (like, the Al and Peg Bundy thing does work better if that's the joke). I think I hadn't been figuring out that there were people thinking that way because it's just too loony? weird?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 8:27 PM
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The formulation of the stereotype in 415 (a woman will only desire sex frequently if she's not getting good enough sex; a woman who is "fucked well" won't want or need any more for a week or two) is loony and weird, but the modified version, which isn't even a stereotype, but just a phenomenon, according to which women (or men) may suppress their libidos so as not to disturb their respective partners isn't so weird.

The difference between the stereotype Brock describes, which I'd never really heard of, and the not unusual phenomenon of suppression is that in the latter case it's not about *insulting* your partner, just not disturbing him or her.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 9:10 PM
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It's definitely crazymaking. Clearly, if you were bad in bed, I wouldn't want to have sex with you very often.

I wonder if this anxiety isn't just an outcropping of the more basic problem, that a woman who is more desirous is somehow more of a "man" than her male partner who doesn't want to have sex. It's castrating to want sex when your male partner isn't in the mood, because it maligns his masculinity in an era when male=horny. Making it an anxiety about being cheated on is one way of making it her problem again.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 9:21 PM
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I really don't see why this should be a phenomenon particular to women who are more desirous than men. Isn't it the case that women go through the same anxieties about their male partners who are more desirous than they are? She must not be satisfying him! She's not enough of a woman! or, He's going to be a cheater! etc.

I understand the narrative that AWB outlines in 504, but something more is needed if you want to make out that it happens primarily in one direction only.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 9:40 PM
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Very good point, 505.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 9:46 PM
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I'm not sure how it all works. It seems that cheating by either partner is usually blamed on one of several causes:

1. Partner is not good-looking enough.
2. Partner is not sexually available enough.
3. Partner is not skilled enough in bed.
4. Partner lacks menwha or some other intangible quality of compatibility.
5. Partner is just one person and one wants more than one.

Are there more? Both men's and women's magazines seem to be based on sexual anxiety about 1, 2, and 3, while most of the cheating I've seen seems to stem more often from 4 or 5. What's a magazine going to do about that?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 9:51 PM
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507.last: Most of the cheating I've seen seemed to stem from 4 or 5, yeah. But that's anecdata; people probably also do cheat for one or a combination of 1-3. It's not hard to believe.

There's also reason 6. Partner is believed to be on the way out in one way or another.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:03 PM
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6 I've seen, too. Also, Partner is away on business or is otherwise distracted by non-relationship things.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:12 PM
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507: I'm not sure how it all works.

People want to have a relationship and they want to have kids and they want to have as much sex as they want and no more or less, which is usually different the amount of sex they could get if they were truly monogamous. This doesn't include guys who want to have a nice, 'safe' woman at home to take care of the kids and mistress (essentially), and doesn't include women who want a nice suburban household, but only get turned on by poolboys they've never met or whatever.

Oh, and most everyone (but not all!) wants to feel secure in their relationship (which definately rules out cheating and/or polyamory), while being able to do whatever they want, when they want.

max
['And none of that takes into account the women with relatively low sex drives who aren't married to men with relatively low sex drives, because the female group outnumbers the male group... and then we have the gender-reversed situation. Oh, and the Taliban Baptists say sex is bad, especially consensual sex! Did I work feminist issues into this? No. There's not enough room.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:24 PM
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There's also a lot of cheating that's people trying out new potential partners before ditching the old one.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:25 PM
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Also, just plain Self is horny and exercises poor judgment.

With respect to 1-3, though, I'm tending to think that those are situations in which the length of the relationship is pretty relevant (getting back to earlier themes). Partner may be going through sexually-unavailable period of time; are you going to sit tight through that or are you going to go off and get some on your own? Partner may be going through a kind of haggard and unkempt period. We can't all be hott all the time, and god help us if we have to be.

As for Partner is not skilled enough in bed (in Self's view)? Well. I tend to think that those relationships probably shouldn't last long in the first place.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:26 PM
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510: Max, we're trying to make a list here. Stop messing it up.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:32 PM
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I tend to think that those relationships probably shouldn't last long in the first place.

Yeah, I've recently found I'm prejudiced against my friends' new relationships when I ask them about the new partner and there isn't some flutter in the eyes of a faraway OMG. I don't even care what the OMG is about; there should be a bit of something there. It's the one tiny window you have to be shallow in whatever way you're shallow. If you don't take it then, you end up being a dick.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:39 PM
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6b. Partner is a stray(ing) dog.
7. Partner belongs to the emperor.
8. Partner trembles as if they were mad.
9. Partner has just broken the water pitcher.

And so on.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:47 PM
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Among the ones I omitted, of course,
10. Partner is fabulous. (IYKWIMAITYD.)


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:49 PM
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513: 510: Max, we're trying to make a list here. Stop messing it up.

A list of what? Reasons to cheat, or 'why everything sucks, since you asked'? (The latter was the point of the thread, I thought.)

max
['Albeit in a strange, and somewhat delicately non-specific way.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:52 PM
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11. Partner gets injured at his job on an offshore oil rig, and encourages you to cheat.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 10:53 PM
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514: I had to read that a few times -- the "shallow" part was confusing. But yes, I can see how it could seem shallow to end a beginning relationship early on because the person wasn't engaging enough (I don't say skilled, that word bothers me) in bed, which is to say that the two of you didn't engage each other enough in bed; or, for that matter, because the menwha didn't seem up to snuff; or because they really do have poor posture which seems ingrained and it makes you cringe a little too often.*

I don't really think that's shallow, unless the skilled-in-bed thing has a more precise meaning than I'd give it. This may seem cold, but we're not here to give people open access whether we want to give it or not. That way lies longer-term relationships you should never have been in in the first place.

* I stopped dating someone once for this reason


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:02 PM
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505

I really don't see why this should be a phenomenon particular to women who are more desirous than men. Isn't it the case that women go through the same anxieties about their male partners who are more desirous than they are? She must not be satisfying him! She's not enough of a woman! or, He's going to be a cheater! etc.

It's not the same. A man can want to have sex but be physically incapable (at least for PIV). Women don't have this problem (at least to nearly the same degree). See 246.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:05 PM
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12. Partner abandons you. Someone appears a few years later claiming to be Partner. You live together as a couple until Partner re-appears, at which point the courts get involved.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:05 PM
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517: 'why everything sucks, since you asked'? (The latter was the point of the thread, I thought.)

I kind of forgot there was a whole thread up there.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:11 PM
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Re my own 518, I suppose I'm obligated to note that since Jan encouraged Bess to find sexual satisfaction elsewhere, that case may in fact be better described as an open relationship than as cheating. But of course Bess wasn't particularly willing, and I don't know how that affects things; can you be coerced into an open relationship?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:19 PM
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519: I only say it because I seem to have friends who feel very noble when they start dating someone who doesn't excite them at all. This person is a reasonable match, is reasonably good-looking, is reasonably smart, or whatever. And then, inevitably, they realize that it would actually be nice to be with someone who is exciting to them in some key way.

And I know I've done it myself. In giving someone a shot, despite realizing that I never smile to myself when I think of them, even after a few dates, I'm not being noble or generous. I'm just deferring the inevitable realization that I do care about being with someone I find really funny, or sexy, or whatever. When that comes after six months of "giving it a shot," it's just mean.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:19 PM
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524: 519: I only say it because I seem to have friends who feel very noble when they start dating someone who doesn't excite them at all.

That's a status/expectations/emotional exhaustion thing, is it not?

max
['13. Because my friends expected me to cheat.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:39 PM
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524: I agree. It's a bad idea to give it a shot with people who seem to have some things in place if there isn't also the whatever, which may be mental whateverness, but may be another kind of something. Ogged may be right that mental whateverness is essential to anything lasting; necessary but not sufficient!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:41 PM
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And oh, yeah, the friends reporting on their newest dating partner and feeling noble about it does sound a bit like their reporting on the guy's damn resume, or pedigree.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:46 PM
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In giving someone a shot, despite realizing that I never smile to myself when I think of them, even after a few dates, I'm not being noble or generous. I'm just deferring the inevitable realization that I do care about being with someone I find really funny, or sexy, or whatever. When that comes after six months of "giving it a shot," it's just mean.

Word. This was the problem I had in that relationship I was in that didn't turn out so well. I only realized recently what was going on; if I had figured it out earlier it might have turned out better. Oh well.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10- 3-09 11:53 PM
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you guys, I'm worried I might be accidentally pregnant. but I have an IUD! but instead of my period I had like two days of light spotting with only one episode of actual bleeding. so not normal. but I never keep good track, was it really when my period was supposed to be? I did get some pimples, that's always the hallmark. they always look at me like I'm the biggest moron ever at the objine when they ask me the date of my last period and I'm like, two weeks ago? ish? and the smell of oil paint in my studio today made me so very queasy. erk. now I'm freaking out but it's not clear it would be any use to take the test since maybe my period's not actually due yet. well, we have a "no freak-outs" policy in our family, as husband x often reminds the girls, so...and it's not like it would be the worst thing ever, it could be great, but if I wanted to get pregnant I probably wouldn't have had an IUD inserted. or maybe I have early menopause? all the psychiatric meds I'm taking are affecting my cycle? oh, I'm reading some things that say depression can make you have early menopause. but in your 30s? um, well, I'll keep you updated. unfogged readers will be the first to know.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 8:51 AM
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My mom got pregnant twice on an IUD, and miscarried both times. Okay, no freak-outs!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 8:59 AM
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There is always the possibility of ectopic pregnancy too, so be alert to symptoms!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 8:59 AM
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Which was not supposed to trigger a freak out, sorry! just to say, keep your eyes open. I think it's very normal not to keep close track of when your periods are if you're not on the pill or in the midst of trying to get pregnant. God knows that I usually don't.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 9:01 AM
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I'm going to sleep now (she said, certain that she would be pointlessly fretting for hours). if you get an ectopic pregnancy do you still test positive for being pregnant? I guess you must. if I have a new baby it will be a great thing, I had sort of been turning it over in my mind for a while and decided against, but there was plenty on the pro side. if I were to be pregnant and then miscarry when they removed the IUD I would actually be really sad. but why worry about tomorrow's problems today? aside from the fact that there's no other actually existing time than today.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 9:07 AM
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because there will be tomorrow's tomorrow's problem's tomorrow?

sorry, that was utterly useless; i have twice tried to make a vaguely cheery joke about time's arrow today and both times failed miserably.

(also i am very very fucked off with concrete university's student magazine; why the fuck do you put the horrible horrible opinion & news columns online but not the half-decent reviews? (although, people (incl. ka/te mon/tgomery) said nice things about my reviews, so I am Happy.))


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 9:33 AM
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Oy. I think it can't be too early for a pregnancy test -- they're good enough now that if your body knows you're pregnant enough to mess with your period, the test will pick it up. I'm pretty sure ectopic pregnancies test positive, but I don't know anything else about them, except go to a doctor quickly if you have abdominal pain.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 11:11 AM
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alameida, I wouldn't freak out. The psych meds may be affecting your cycle, and I don't know how far into your 30s you are, but periodic spotting, especially if you've been under stress, isn't something I'd see calling for a freak-out. A think, yes. Maybe a pregnancy test.

I've never used an IUD, but perhaps its placement should be checked?

Also, you should probably start marking the calendar. Spotting etc. noted on this date.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 1:04 PM
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I vote for possible misplacement or failure of the IUD (and pregnancy). Followed by some kind of hormone shift, due to something else. (Get your hormone levels and thyroid checked.)(Which you would need to do if you were pregnant anyways.) Early menopause (solely) due to depression or whatnot seems improbable.

max
['That's be my guess.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 2:25 PM
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Thyroid makes sense -- I can have vastly disparate periods depending on where my thyroid is at. Or stress. Or random disparateness. Freaking out definitelt not yet called for.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 2:39 PM
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aside from the fact that there's no other actually existing time than today.

Quentin Compson and the dog-men from the future disagree. I don't have any expertise, but things will totes work out, they will, good vibes and all that. If you're at the point of asking unfogged for advice, never a bad idea to see a doctor instead. The doctor will almost certainly be saner and more reassuring.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 2:46 PM
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text weirdly implies that unfogged is not sane.

he (I assume) also employs the term "totes", which increasingly widespread use is intended to drive various parties bananas, as far as I can tell.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 6:24 PM
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*NOT* to encourage freak-out; I'm guessing this is just some minor IUD slippage.

That said:

I'm pretty sure ectopic pregnancies test positive,

Right, but you need two tests over a period of a few of days. The hormone counts rise more slowly if it's ectopic. [There are other ways to diagnose, but that's a key part.]

but I don't know anything else about them, except go to a doctor quickly if you have abdominal pain.

Or shoulder pain. For some reason, referred pain in the shoulder is classic for ectopic pregnancy.

Which I don't think you have. Calm thoughts. Peaceful wishes. The body is pretty amazing at taking care of itself.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 7:17 PM
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yeah, I guess I'll take a test. I'm probably just stressed out because I got depressed. (but am now doing better on twice the meds).


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 7:32 PM
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the thing about asking unfogged for advice is that there is always someone around, and plus you are way more entertaining than the doctor, who is a very nice, incredibly glamorous indian woman. so you're like, pretty damn entertaining, dudes.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 7:36 PM
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(but am now doing better on twice the meds)

Could eight times the meds be twice as good? One way to find out!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 7:39 PM
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ala-I just sent you an e-mail.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 4-09 8:38 PM
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verdict: not pregnant! am I happy now? or did it seem a weirdly awesome possibility? I mostly just don't want to because I suffered from postpartum psychosis last time and it doesn't seem fair to put my existing kids to a serious risk that I might kill myself. plus being pregnant for nine months and then breastfeeding for two years is a pain in the ass.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10- 5-09 1:12 AM
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being pregnant for nine months and then breastfeeding for two years is a pain in the ass.

TRY THE OTHER WAY ROUND AND SEE HOW YOU LIKE THAT.


Posted by: OPINIONATED FEMALE AFRICAN ELEPHANT | Link to this comment | 10- 5-09 2:29 AM
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I guess I need to check on Unfogged more often. Just in case anyone's still reading:

I definitely can relate to having sex to "keep the peace" in some sense. One thing I've noticed about our marriage is that we tend to snap at each other less if we've had some sort of serious physical intimacy within the last couple of months. When we've gone too long without that connection, small frictions escalate more easily into serious grumpfests and sulking. Whereas if we've connected recently, we tend to laugh a lot of that stuff off - maybe one of us will start getting grumpy, but the other will call attention to it, and then we'll both start laughing about how out of proportion the whole reaction is. (Major stuff still needs to be dealt with seriously, of course - what I'm talking about here is overreactions to minor frictions of everyday life.)

So I definitely have a sense of wanting to take advantage of available opportunities for physical intimacy, whether I'm really in the mood or not. (If the relatively low frequency surprises you, part of the issue is her not wanting to have sex when our son is in the house, which kind of limits the available opportunities for now. That also makes available opportunities pretty damn precious, and not something to be casually blown off.)

Now of course this is all taking place against a background of trying to work through some serious sexual differences around what we do together. I've recognized that at least for now, sex is mostly not going to include the stuff that really turns me on, but is more of a mildly pleasurable physical experience for me that is primarily focused on trying to give her what she wants, and enjoying myself vicariously through her pleasure. And we've made progress in the last year: a year ago, I would have substituted "for the foreseeable future" for "at least for now" in the above, and dropped the "mostly" from the next clause. I've also found that having that physical connection has made it easier to hold the difficult and often emotionally painful discussions where we've made what progress we have.

So that's my take on "keeping the peace" in the relationship. Not in the "getting my partner to stop bugging me" sense, but more in the "making the rest of the relationship run smoother, even though I may not be all that excited about the specific act itself right now" sense.


Posted by: EDguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-09 1:27 PM
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I still hate the phrasing "keeping the peace," but I appreciate what you are saying here. It's similar to what JRoth had to say about washing dishes upthread, but presumably creates a somewhat stronger bond and warmth than that.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-09 1:50 PM
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