Lately, I’ve taken to reading a few so-called “slut” blogs; written by unapologetically promiscuous women with high sex drives and the willingness to seek out pleasure on their own terms.
The thing I most appreciate about these blogs is that they give me insight that I might not otherwise get. I stopped trying to figure women out a long time ago. I treat girls like a black box. Actually, I treat most people like a black box. I don’t particularly care what they’re thinking; I only focus on their behavior. Things change as I get to know someone, but in the short run I’ve found the following to be true: if you’re trying to get inside a girl’s pants, the worst thing you can do is to try to get inside her head. Once you start guessing at her motives and projecting motivations onto her actions, you’re dead in the water.
I dig where these ladies are coming from. I think it’s a ridiculous idea that your sexual behavior be completely circumscribed based on what you happen to have between your legs. That’s on the one hand. On the other, I’m sort of tired of hearing complaints from women about the “double standard”.
Do women who sleep with lots of men pay a higher price than men who sleep with lots of men? Yes, they probably do, but men who sleep with lots of women are a special case. I don’t know that it is an appropriate comparison at all. Yes, our culture holds certain esteem for the Alpha Male, but our culture also elevates his female counterpart, the Queen Bee. The difference is that a woman does not become Queen Bee by bedding a lot of men. There’s a reason for that: bedding a lot of men is no great accomplishment. The Queen Bee maintains her status, in large part, by holding out the promise of sex to lots of men, but fulfilling that promise only to a select few. Other women fall in line the way most men fall in line behind an Alpha Male.
Almost any woman, if she adjusts her standards and expectations and can develop a little game, can sleep with lots of men. For the most part, we don’t put up much of a fight. The average man, however, cannot go forth into the world with the same sort of sexual impunity that even the plainest Jane possesses. A woman named Norah Vincent wrote a book about the eighteen months she spent living as a man. She sums up part of her experience in the following quote:
If you have never been sexually attracted to women, you will never quite understand the monumental power of female sexuality, except by proxy or in theory, nor will you quite know the immense advantage it gives us over men. Dating women as a man was a lesson in female power, and it made me, of all things, into a momentary misogynist, which I suppose was the best indicator that my experiment had worked. I saw my own sex from the other side, and I disliked women irrationally for a while because of it. I disliked their superiority, their accusatory smiles, their entitlement to choose or dash me with a fingertip, an execution so lazy, so effortless, it made the defeats and even the successes unbearably humiliating. Typical male power feels by comparison like a blunt instrument, its salvos and field strategies laughably remedial next to the damage a woman can do with a single cutting word: no.
There are some men in this world who are so good-looking, or so accomplished that they rarely ever get to know the feeling of rejection, and others that are so oblivious and self-centered that they are almost incapable of knowing or caring about that feeling. For the vast majority of us, however, the fear of being rejected, of being social ostracized is real. We can feel it in our guts every time we approach a girl or make a follow-up call, or lean in for that first kiss. Some buckle under that feeling and give in to the fear; others don’t.
Alpha Males aren’t held in high esteem because they sleep with a lot of women. The women are a side effect of being thought in such high esteem. Women are supposed to have the final decision on sex, but for some men that is not the case. Alpha Males derive their status from their ability to impose their will on the world around them; to take a system that is “supposed” to work one way and make it work the way they want it to work. To put it in language that relates to the above quote, Alpha Males are those of us who don't take no for an answer. They are the ones who win wars, build corporations, and bring new technology to the market. Without people like that, the world that we know would not exist and we’d all still be squatting in caves, so I think that esteem is well-deserved.
I agree that there is something not right about condemning women for their sexual choices, especially now when birth control and medicine have mitigated some of the ill effects of promiscuity. My point is that the other half of that supposed double standard, rewarding male promiscuity, is really unrelated. Our culture punishes men, as well. It just does it to those who are unable to conquer their fears or to overcome their present limitations.
The question that I put out there for consideration is this: Do men who try, and fail, to bed numerous partners suffer any less social consequences than so-called sluts?