“The Myth of Sexual Spontaneity”

“The Myth of Sexual Spontaneity” July 14, 2009

Greta Christina attacks what she calls “the myth of sexual spontaneity,” defined as the idea that “for sex to be good and meaningful, the desire has to strike both partners out of the blue and be acted on immediately” on the grounds that arises from and implictly reinforces negative views of sex:

Our culture tends to see sex, either as a sin that we must resist, or as a selfish luxury we can do without. We don’t see it as a necessity, and we definitely don’t see it as a central and valuable part of the human experience.

And yet — obviously — we still want it.

Which is where the “swept away” myth comes in. The “swept away” myth lets us have sex, while pretending to ourselves and everybody else that we didn’t really want it, and didn’t consciously choose it, and can’t be blamed for it.

It’s essentially a way of abdicating responsibility for sex. It’s a way of convincing yourself that you didn’t really choose this. You were overwhelmed by passion, by an animal urge or emotional flood that couldn’t be controlled. You couldn’t help it. It wasn’t your fault.

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