As of late, I’ve been noticing a subtle trend in the discourse surrounding sex, wherein people go out of their way to emphasize how adventurous and kinky and open-minded they are in bed. Not that there is anything remotely wrong with any of that, but is there any reason to accompany those remarks with a dig at people who are more vanilla/tame/virginal? I’m sure that the need to boast about the amazingly vibrant and multifaceted sex life is, in part, a reaction to society’s aggressive slut-shaming and general sex-negativity. While it’s great when people are able to see beyond our collectively lame perception of sex, it’s not cool at all to shame other people for differing sexual proclivities.
I’m sure that plenty of people would definitely consider me a prude. I’ve only had one boyfriend. Prior to him, I’d had less than 10 remotely sexual encounters. I’ve never intentionally engaged in casual sex/hookups – when it happened, I was wrought with anxiety and discomfort. I don’t like anal, nor am I interested in threesomes. And in this post-Katy Perry world, I’ve never even kissed a girl. In some circles, these truths would totally render me an uptight prude. Which, really, I fail to see much of a problem with. There is absolutely nothing wrong with not wanting to be super experimental, or lacking any desire to try to win a “who’s kinkier?” contest. Being sex-positive doesn’t mean imposing your own ideas onto others — it means respecting that there are tons of ways to express your sexuality, and they are valid, whether you’re choosing to save yourself for marriage or save yourself for the next guy who makes you a jello shot.
It doesn’t matter if missionary is your end-all and be-all or whether you devour the Kama Sutra, if you enjoy fingerbangs or need to be gagged, bound and slapped to enjoy yourself, or if you have absolutely no interest in sex whatsoever; you shouldn’t feel shamed or looked down upon for your proclivities. We have such a messy societal narrative when it comes to sex. If you’re having too much sex, you’re disgusting, but if you’re not have enough, you’re boring. We need to stop buying into these arbitrary notions that there is some sort of barometer for what is the “right” kind of sex life. As long as it’s consistently safe and consensual, that’s all that matters. Everyone finds different things appealing, so let’s stop policing everyone’s behaviors and start accepting people for who they are, instead of who we think they should be.
[Lead image via CREATISTA/Shutterstock]