I raised an eyebrow – or two – when this Metro article which details 27 things men apparently do in bed (though not in my bloody bed, thanks), which women hate, came up on my Facebook feed. http://metro.co.uk/2014/05/03/27-things-men-do-in-bed-that-women-hate-4717030/ For your ease and comfort, I’ve gone through all 27 things to learn how the sexual revolution is progressing.
1. ‘When they try to recreate sex positions that they’ve obviously seen on some online porn site, and you end up basically doing a headstand, looking a mess and having to listen to them say: “You’re loving that aren’t you babes?” Err, no.’
Try not to go to bed with men who watch porn. They are shit in bed. Fact.
2. ‘When you’re on top and they’re just staring at you and it’s like, ahhh what face do I pull? So you just close your eyes and hope for the best.’
I have no advice on this. I am unfamiliar with the face pulling dilemma.
3. ‘When they ask YOU to put the condom on. Just no.’
This is personal taste. Do if you want, don’t if you don’t. Remember, sex is supposed to be fun.
4. ‘When they think it’s sexy to spank you so hard that you just want to turn around and punch them in the face.’
This is common assault and is a criminal offence under English law. Men who are spanking you, should have had a discussion with you beforehand to see if a) you want him to spank you and b) how hard and how long and c) what signal you are going to give if you want him to lay off. Any man who doesn’t do this, is committing assault if he just ups and spanks you without checking with you first that that’s what you want.
5. ‘When they just stop, and it’s like, “hello? Did you hear me orgasm?” No.’
Well this is about communication and having a lover who thinks your orgasm actually matters. If he doesn’t, stop going to bed with him.
7. ‘When you give them a blow job and they start f*****g your face as if you don’t have a gag reflex. How about I’m sick all over your penis?’
A man who does this without asking first, is committing oral rape. Agreeing to give someone a blow job, does not imply agreeing to be deliberately choked and a man who thinks it does, isn’t a man any woman should be having sex with.
8. ‘When they ask you to strip (which is awkward – what music do you put on?) and then your skinny jeans get stuck round your ankles.’
Personal taste and communication again. If you don’t want to strip, don’t. You should be having fun.
9. ‘When they see random things they’ve read online and think they’re a good idea. Err no, I don’t want ice rubbed all over my body.’
Again, personal taste. There’s nothing wrong with asking someone if they’d like to try something. But you should bear in mind that whatever you're asking them to do, might reasonably be regarded as fun for them. If you then go ahead and do it when that person has made it clear they don’t want you to, you are committing a sexual assault.
10. ‘When you’re in the middle of foreplay and they thrust a finger up your bum with NO warning.’
That’s called sexual assault again.
11. ‘When they drag it out because they’re waiting for you to orgasm first. You’re going to be waiting a while for that…’
Communication again. Sex sounds like not much fun so far. Dragging it out sounds pretty dreary, what happened to the sexual revolution?
12. ‘Trying to go down on you in the morning when you’re feeling really unsexy and unclean. Just gross.’
Meh. Personal taste there. I don’t care if I feel unclean, but if you do and someone tries to do anything to your body that you don’t want them to, they are committing sexual assault.
13. ‘Putting their fingers in all your holes at once like they’re playing some sort of instrument. Far too confusing, you just don’t know what’s going on down there.’
Again, if they haven’t actually asked you, if they’re not tuning in with what you are doing while doing sex with them, this is sexual assault.
14. ‘When they think it’s a good idea to stick objects in you. Just no.’
Without consent = sexual assault. And er, a bit of detail about what sort of objects might be instructive. Items of furniture? Useful camping equipment? WTF?
15. ‘Casually trying to have anal sex without asking and without lube. It does not just slip in there.’
This is rape. You don’t “casually” try to penetrate anyone’s body without their consent.
16. ‘Being so aggressive with their hands during foreplay that they pretty much give you internal bleeding and bruising.’
This is sexual assault.
17. ‘Nipple biting. It just f*****g hurts.’
This is sexual assault.
18. ‘Pulling your hair so hard you scream and your eyes water.’
This is assault.
19. ‘Baggy boxers. Eww.’
This is sartorial incompetence, but it’s down to personal taste.
20. ‘Man stubble. And not the type that’s on his face.’
Personal taste and communication.
21. ‘When a bloke wants to do 69 but insists he’s on top, so you basically suffocate under his smelly sack. Vom.’
Without having checked that you want this to happen, this is another sexual assault.
22. ‘Eating fried chicken before a blow job. Pretty much the worst taste imaginable.’
Don’t give him a blow job. There’s no law that says someone has to have a blow job just because he wants one.
23. ‘When men rush foreplay and think you’re going to orgasm from 27 seconds of finger pumping.’
They’re incompetent lovers. Don’t go to bed with them, find someone more competent. Preferably someone who isn’t into porn, so hasn’t learned lots of crap about sex from misogynist porn merchants and knows that sex is supposed to be fun for all parties doing it.
24. ‘Wanting to cum on your face, in your hair, in your eyes.’
Well he can want, but if he does it without consent, it’s a sexual assault. Again.
25. ‘Being passive aggressive when they can’t make you orgasm. So sexy.’
Um, dump this guy.
26. ‘Trying to remove underwear with their teeth. What even is that?’
Well, enterprising and ambitious, if pointless. Men should ask if women want them to do this. Obviously.
27. ‘Not cleaning properly. It’s not attractive to taste urine.’
Don’t taste it. As previously pointed out, no-one actually has to have a blow job.
Now here’s the thing about this list: it makes heterosexual sex look like an endurance test for women, rather than a fun, recreational activity. I’m puzzling as to why Metro would have published an article like this, with no comment about some of the things women “hate” which actually constitute criminal assaults. Without any comment about the nature of sex which assumes that to have it, women don’t need to enjoy it or even reluctantly consent to it. Without any helpline numbers to make clear to women, that they don’t have to and indeed shouldn’t be putting up with any sexual treatment which they don’t actively want as part of their sexual repertoire.
Last time I had sex with a man, it was fun. I thought it was supposed to be. In fact, for me, that’s the base line of sex – that it’s fun. If it isn’t, then I don’t do it. That’s what I thought was supposed to constitute normal. But apparently, I should be enduring all sorts of sexual torture, humiliation and distaste because… well, I don’t know really, what, because sex isn’t supposed to be fun? Not once in this article, is there any comment about the basic thing everyone needs to know about sex: that it should be fun for both (or all) parties and if one person isn’t enjoying it, then it needs to stop. That is the basic rule of sex and that so many people don’t know that and that newspapers like Metro are still not making people aware of that, is alarming.
This sort of article, without comment, normalises the expectation that women shouldn’t expect sex to be enjoyable or fun; indeed, that they should expect pain, humiliation and shock to be some kind of ersatz-fun. Because sex isn’t about enjoying yourself, sharing a great natural resource with your lover who respects you and knows that part of the fun of sex, is knowing that you are turning on the other partner. No, sex is all about men’s pleasure when they use women as wank socks. And in order to hang on to their boyfriend and not have the horrendous fate of being – oh horror! – single, women should just STFU and accept that this is part of the deal.
I’m curious to know if Metro is going to follow up this article with an acknowledgement that many of the practices it lists, are actually criminal offences at worst and inconsiderate, incapable sexual behaviour by men at best, sexual behaviour that the sexual revolution told women was abolished.
Here’s betting they won’t. Here’s betting that this article will merely be added to the pile of dross that helps rape culture to flourish.