sex as a business transaction

Is Sex a Mere Business Transaction?

By ShredderFeeder

When it comes to sex, we pit males and females against each other from the start.

Society teaches boys it’s ok to want it, to pursue it, and that their goal is to capture it. We tell girls they should hold out until they get something of value. We teach boys to be safe; girls that there’s a price to be paid, first.

There is a whole “sex-as-a-commodity” stereotype that educators of the sexes and right-wing-whack-jobs, abhor.

Think I’m being grandiose?  While writing this, I picked up and opened the first flyer handy, a Target flyer. The model holding the iPod in the MP3 player advertisment is barely wearing anything. Another? Recently, an Ethan Allen catalog profiled a lovely coffee table with a size zero waif lying across it. Ironically, this detracted from the advert, since I couldn’t see enough of the table to tell if I liked it or not.

Even more: Watch cartoons, kids networks like Nickelodeon, or even Disney.  (Where do you think Britney Spears came from?)

Sex sells.  Always has. Always will.  

I don’t have a problem with sex being a part of us, at all.

What I have a problem with is hypocrites who would have us believe that sex is not a part of us, or that it’s something accompanied by a mental light-switch that can be turned on and off at will. With the people who willingly teach their boys to pursue the girls, and teach their girls to hold out until they get what they want out from boys – a HORRIBLE double-standard that will always come back to bite us in a big way.

Of course, these same hypocrites are often the very ones wearing diamond-encrusted torture-symbols (crucifix), suspended between breasts enveloped by bras designed to orchestrate cleavage where there wasn’t any. Cleavage barely hidden behind low-cut blouses. These women get PISSED when men stare at their synthetic valley. Of course we’re staring at your breasts, you idiot. For the first 18 or so months of  a majority of normal life, breasts were directly associated with getting fed – and that connection does not go away, for men or women. I digress.

We are monetizing sex, every last one of us. Assigning it value.

And where there is value, there will always be a debtor/debtee relationship.

It starts out with a subtle, honorable-seeming “if you give me a commitment you’ll get sex”, but it never stops there.

Women dangle sex over men’s heads to get what they want. Then when the sex stops, they’re amazed the  guy goes elsewhere.

Think that’s a bit harsh?  Let me put it to you this way: By teaching a girl to hold out for marriage, you’re teaching her to only give up the sex when the guy gives her something of value, in this example, the commitment.  It’s only natural for that equation to become ingrained within the subconscious mind, causing all sorts of bad habits. From the beginning, girls are taught that sex is something they can use to get what they want, and then we chastise them for using the tools at their disposal.

But that isn’t all there is to it.

Women use sex as a bargaining tactic, too.

The problem is, more often than not, it doesn’t go both ways.  If sex can be used to secure the commitment, why isn’t it ok to use the commitment to secure sex?  Doesn’t it make sense that once you’ve made the agreement to trade sex for commitment that both parties need to keep up their end?  Why do women feel that once they have the marriage license in hand that sex doesn’t matter anymore?

Conversely why do men feel like it’s ok to cheat even when everything else in the relationship is perfect? (Hint:  When you put a stop payment on a check, it negates any contract contingent on that payment.)

And we wonder why our divorce rate is so high.

Women bear the brunt of sexual responsibility. Nature has saddled them with the ultimate responsibility: getting to bear the kids, and often being the main person raising them. They inherit the ultimate responsibility by just by virtue of their gender.

Men have their responsibility in this as well, but let’s face it folks, men often suck at responsibility – that’s our teaching as well.  Society doesn’t teach men to revere a sexual relationship with a woman, or fatherhood, though over time some learn better than others.

Men and women both are not taught from the ground up the ultimate responsibility that is to be had, and we DO NOT teach them to take responsibility for who they are as people, human beings, potential parents, and for the little lives they might create.

This cycle has to end.  

As long as sex is used as the hook, and the club, we will never have REAL relationships, only business transactions wherein no party ever truly observes full disclosure.

image: google

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'Is Sex a Mere Business Transaction?' have 28 comments

  1. July 17, 2012 @ 12:34 pm Mitchtress

    Okay, as the mother of a son, there are a few nits here that I need to pick. Keeping in mind that you’re speaking generally, keep also in mind that as the mother of a son, I have a lot of contact with a lot of other mothers of sons: We don’t teach our boys that sex is a commodity, nor do we teach them that it’s okay for a girl to treat it as such. We don’t teach our boys that sex is free or should be. My son is literally (yes, literally!) living proof that birth control is not 100% effective, and he knows it.

    He’s been raised to not have sex with a girl with whom he doesn’t want around for the rest of his life. He’s been raised to understand birth control fails; there is no free ride. He’s been raised to understand that if he is with a girl who withholds sex as a punishment or dangles it as a reward, he is to run far and fast in the opposite direction.

    Having spent years chatting with other mothers on the sidelines of various sporting events, I can assure you: we are not unusual.

  2. July 17, 2012 @ 12:51 pm ShredderFeeder

    Exactly. We teach to two different standards. We don’t teach boys that sex is a commodity, but we DO teach that to girls. That’s what the whole “hold out until you get a commitment ” is.

    As long as we’re teaching two different sets of rules, we’re going to end up in conflict.

    I agree with you on teaching your kid to not have sex with someone he doesn’t want to have around, it’s a pity it’s a lesson that will be drowned out by an explosion of hormones before too long…

  3. July 17, 2012 @ 1:34 pm Laurie

    have to say – first I felt like a total slut lol… since I never held any type of commitment over anyones head.. if I was in the mood, I looked for it and I found it… as a mom of both a son and daughters… I have told them to value themselves enough to understand that the choices they make are the choices *they alone live with…. you want sex, knock your socks off.. you want a relationship – sex is only a part of it… you want to get off any way you can – buy a toy… but the act will change you and it will change where you are headed with someone if you want it to… if you just want fun and games.. so will they. If you want to make it something deeper – don’t use sex as a hold.. learn to be friends and partners..
    So – although I see where the author is coming from – I disagree that every single one of us uses sex as a weapon or a reward.

  4. July 17, 2012 @ 1:51 pm Mitchtress

    LOL, Shredder, he’s 18. :-) We made it past the hormones phase and now just need to hope he marries a woman I can like!

    Speaking as a woman, I’m with Laurie. If I had wanted to have sex with a guy, I would have and not held it over his head. If I wanted to have a relationship with a guy, the sex was just a side-dish. Marriage is different, IMO; sex is necessary, but still not as a tool.

  5. July 17, 2012 @ 2:21 pm Laurie

    to that point, Mitch.. sex as a tool in marriage – i hear about that often enough (although usually from men having their wives hold it over them as a way to get them to do something) I never figured out *why they used it… i don’t think there should be anything held over someone you are a partner with.. if my husband doesn’t want to do something just for the sake of doing it – i’ll do it.. but i’ll be damned if I’m holding a blow job or something over his head to get it done..

  6. July 17, 2012 @ 9:33 pm Tootie

    I’ll just say this:

    You’re running with the wrong people if that’s what you get out of life. Women are essentially prostitutes and men are basically rutting animals? Not in so many words, maybe, but that’s what I got from it.

    IMO – you really don’t like women. Your loss.

  7. July 17, 2012 @ 11:03 pm ShredderFeeder

    Yes, as with any generalization there are exceptions.

    I think I’m more coming from the “This is what we TEACH, therefore we shouldn’t be surprised when it happens.”

    I think that holding out sex to get what you want is as close to prostitution as you can get without actual cash changing hands. Whether the value of what you’re after is intrinsic, cash, or implied, it’s still trading sex for value.

    And the whole “Don’t have sex until you get a comittment.” is exactly that implied value. Don’t give it up until you get something of value, that value being security.

    I have friends who can be in the middle of a fight, break for sex, and pick up the fight where they left off. Though they both confess that afterwards neither is nearly as angry about ..

    To me, *THAT* is the healthiest relationship I know.

    Sex is healing. Sex is healthy. Sex breeds a wider feeling of togetherness. Sex is therapeutic.

    Sex is good.

  8. July 18, 2012 @ 12:30 am Steph

    Wow,you really hate women! That is a mighty broad brush you are using my friend. As a married woman and mother of 2 daughters,you are the type of boy (you are NOT a man honey!), that my husband and I warned our daughters about.

  9. July 18, 2012 @ 6:52 am Tootie

    If THAT is your benchmark for a healthy relationship, you’re probably going to be alone for a long time. Sex is good, sure. Sex is good when both parties are on the same planet. Your misogynistic rants certainly don’t make you sound like a desirable partner – rather, like a bitter man who’s had his advances rejected by a few women. If you lose the attitude that women are essentially prostitutes, you might get laid. Unless, of course, you don’t mind paying for it.

  10. July 18, 2012 @ 10:36 am ShredderFeeder

    And let the hate begin.

    The word is misanthrope. I’m pretty much fed up with humanity in general, not any one particular segment of it.

    If anything I’m the opposite. I hate men, mostly because I’ve spent my life being a nice guy but having to live down the mistakes of other men. (IE “My ex did this, my ex did that…”)

    All I’m saying is that it’s unhealthy to use (or withhold) sex to get what you want. Even if it’s a reward system. Have sex because you like having sex, or don’t. Don’t monetize sex. Don’t make it a trade. Just enjoy what is just about the best part of being human without ulterior motive.

  11. July 18, 2012 @ 10:42 am blindgal

    I have to say that I’m in complete agreement with you. I enjoy sex and never withhold it, even when I’m beyond angry with my husband. Because, it just punishes me, too. I know a lot of women that say they are putting their husband in the doghouse. And by doghouse…no sex. But, I think the reality of it is…they just don’t want to have sex and it’s an excuse to get out of, what I believe they think, the chore.

    Nice guys are hard to find. Keep being a nice guy, ok Jesse?

  12. July 18, 2012 @ 10:49 am ShredderFeeder

    When sex is used as the stick, (or even when it’s used as the carrot, dangled in front of someone to get them to perform), all it does is create bad energy and resentment.

    Sex should never be a have-to, chore, or as I’ve heard it referred to before “Wifely Duty”

    If you’re not having sex because you want to, don’t bother. I don’t want compliance, I want an eager partner and participant. :)

  13. July 18, 2012 @ 10:50 am Chanize

    I don’t know about this “angry sex” thing. I’ve heard of it, but it baffles me. I don’t sleep with people who have pissed me off! So, if my spouse and I are arguing and he wants to have sex, am I withholding because my attitude is “get the frack out of here, jackwagon?” Or, am I supposed to spread my legs and pretend like I’m not seething inside. Or put away the argument and channel the lust inside of me? Because really, I’m not wired like that. There is no lust in side of me when I’m annoyed, only murderous feelings! So, does that mean I’m withholding sex? It would seem to some that I am. But I would never have looked at it that way. I look at bargaining with sex as a “honey, if you wash the windows, I’ll bend over…” type of thing.

  14. July 18, 2012 @ 10:57 am Laurie

    you guys know some very sad people.. speaking from my own experiences.. I don’t ever remember having dangled in front of me for a prize. from high school, to college, to married life.. i guess I know people who *would do it (maybe) but I also know people who’s spouses cheated, who were abused, who are rich, poor, etc… seems to be you are using a broad brush to slap paint on a every one you know… make new friends lol

  15. July 18, 2012 @ 10:58 am Laurie

    ugh – having SEX dangled.. very important word got dropped from my post!

  16. July 18, 2012 @ 11:09 am blindgal

    When I was married to my ex-husband, he withheld sex for a year at a time. By the time I left him, we hadn’t had sex in 2 years. I tried to buy sex from him because a girl has needs too, y’know :) I created a “menu” with prices…because he withheld money from me too. That ‘menu” worked ONCE. I think I made $150 for the whole shebang…a great price, if you ask me! I never withheld or dangled sex, it’s not a weapon, it’s a primal need as well as an emotional connection. And it feels good too.

    I think that because of my experience with my ex husband, I completely understand where Shredder is coming from. I don’t find him to be a woman hater at all, I find him to be frustrated with particular situations. I wanted my ex to want to be with me. He didn’t. I left. Now, I’m married to someone…10 years this Saturday…and we have a healthy sexual relationship as well as a healthy communicative one.

  17. July 18, 2012 @ 11:27 am Mitchtress

    There’s a difference between withholding sex from power, and withholding it from anger. I’ve been known to point out to my beloved: “You have been acting like a dick all day. What on this green earth makes you think I want MORE dick from you??”

    I’ve had the same experience as “Blindgal”. We don’t expect a man to withhold sex as a weapon to control us, do we? We think of men as being horny all the time; what kind of man will deny his own sexual pleasure for the sake of controlling us? So I can see Shredder’s point, too. But at the same time, some of the wording was pretty bizarre.

    Like this: “Of course, these same hypocrites are often the very ones wearing diamond-encrusted torture-symbols (crucifix), suspended between breasts enveloped by bras designed to orchestrate cleavage where there wasn’t any. Cleavage barely hidden behind low-cut blouses. These women get PISSED when men stare at their synthetic valley. Of course we’re staring at your breasts, you idiot. For the first 18 or so months of a majority of normal life, breasts were directly associated with getting fed – and that connection does not go away, for men or women. I digress.”

    What do diamond crucifixes or breast implants have to do with monetizing sex in this context? Or the fact that women don’t want to be minimized to a body part, regardless of how instinctive it is? I mean, I was breastfed, too, and I don’t have any trouble maintaining eye-contact with other women.

  18. July 18, 2012 @ 12:00 pm Abby

    Okay…some thoughts. First, I have a hard time with the “holding out for commitment before sex” idea in this day and age. It’s far and few between that people are actually waiting to have sex before they’re in a deep committed relationship (marriage or some other type of real commitment). Those who *do wait (to clarify…those I’ve known), haven’t waited because of some exchange system. They’ve waited because of deeply held values (perhaps religious but not always). These people value sex within the confines of a committed relationship. Heck, *I value sex way more in the confines of the marriage I’m in now, so I can certainly understand where they’re coming from. The only difference between me and them is that I also (in the past) have had completely non-committed sex and highly enjoyed it. ;) My husband and I often have “make up sex.” It’s a way to reconnect even when we’re angry with each other. It reminds us that we are part of a bigger picture than the argument of the moment. Sometimes we have sex when we aren’t really feeling it but one of us really needs it. Using sex as a weapon? I don’t get it. If my husband didn’t have sex with me for two years because of control issues? Well, let’s say it wouldn’t have gone ON for two years. I’d have moved on. Does sex sell? Well, yeah. I think it’s weird to even think that sex isn’t a commodity in many ways. ANYTHING in high demand is a commodity. A sexy woman or man in a commercial catches your eye. We’re a visual bunch. :) But that’s just part of it. Breasts? Well, I bought ’em. And I’d be insulted if people didn’t admire my investment. I didn’t buy ’em to be ignored. Again..we’re a very visual bunch. I’ve never had an experience where I was actually speaking with someone and they weren’t looking at *me and not my breasts thought. Maybe I’d feel differently if I felt completely objectified. It just hasn’t been my personal experience. My son was bottlefed and my girls were breastfed. He seems to enjoy the whole breast thing a lot more than them. Maybe because he was denied during those crucial first 18 months? (Said she with toungue firmly in cheek.) thoughts. Take ’em or leave ’em.

  19. July 18, 2012 @ 12:02 pm ShredderFeeder

    “Some of his wording is pretty bizarre…”

    I only moonlight at this writing thing.. I’m a geek by trade. I probably could have phrased things better.

    As far as the cleavage comment, what I meant to orchestrate is the horrible double-standard that is perpetrated. “Here it is” shouldn’t be coupled with “Don’t look.”

    No – I don’t mean you should “suck it up” (so to speak, pun partially intended) and have sex even though you’re pissed. Being angry/not in the mood is very different than “I’m doing it to hurt you or prove a point.”

    Hell even *I’m* not in the mood from time to time. (to shatter a myth about men) But I’ll usually give it the old college try anyway. ;-) (to reinforce another one.)

  20. July 18, 2012 @ 12:05 pm ShredderFeeder

    Abby – yes – exactly – thank you.

    I guess the problem is the 19th century morals intruding on my 21st century brain.

    They have no business here and can go away.

  21. July 18, 2012 @ 12:49 pm Mitchtress

    Ah, now I get it. My husband is also a geek by trade and he too is a pretty good writer. The trouble is getting him to do it in English instead of binary. ;-)

  22. July 18, 2012 @ 12:58 pm ShredderFeeder

    if {isn’t in code] ; then
    error{should be in code}
    fix code

  23. July 18, 2012 @ 12:59 pm ShredderFeeder

    Perfectly good joke ruined by a typo. ( “]” instead of “}” in the first line – for those who wonder )

  24. July 18, 2012 @ 1:01 pm ShredderFeeder

    Geeks are also more prone to being sexually frustrated misogynistic assholes.

    I’d explain why but it involves rejection, the “popular” kids, and of course wedgies.

  25. July 18, 2012 @ 1:09 pm Abby

    Shred…I think there is a *slight chance…SLIGHT….that you may not have come across in the way you intended. I’m saying that because if you agree with *me then you definitely came across differently than you intended. ;)Because I disagreed with your entire original post. lol You’re a tech geek though so I’ll try to reserve judgment on your writing ability other than saying, “Remember it’s the job of the writer to be clear in his point; it’s not the job of the reader to try to figure out what you’re really trying to say.” ;)My husband speaks to me in code too. In both worlds sometimes! :/ MEN.

  26. July 18, 2012 @ 1:23 pm ShredderFeeder

    Abby – you forgot the after MEN the way my wife does it. :)

    Which explains why I *DON’T* get paid for my writing but I *DO* get paid for my coding. :)

  27. July 18, 2012 @ 5:15 pm Momto3

    I have an issue with the following sentence: “And the whole “Don’t have sex until you get a comittment.” is exactly that implied value. Don’t give it up until you get something of value, that value being security.”

    Those that I know (and I do still know some) who waited or are waiting for marriage aren’t using it as a commodity. I actually know men who are waiting until they get married as well. Not because you need to get something first but because they want sex to be with just one partner. With just that one person they love. They don’t see it as a “you give me this and I’ll give you that” because sex isn’t seen like that to them. I suppose there are women who feel that way or are taught that way but I haven’t met them. Those that I know that say you should wait until marriage teach that to their sons as well as their daughters.

    I did not wait until marriage but I can certainly understand wanting to. I would like my kids (1 boy, 2 girls) to wait as well. Again, not as a commodity or a “you can’t have this until you get this” kind of thing. But at least wait until a committed relationship so that it is something special versus a jump in the hay. Too late for 2 of them. LOL Which is okay too. I can tell them what I want but the line is drawn there.

    As for the breasts thing, I understand what you are saying. However, being the mom to a dd who wears a size H cup, things that would look fine on me may look quite obscene on her and even a tasteful shirt can look like she’s looking for attention. That doesn’t mean she should be ogled and her eyes/face ignored. She does have a brain to go with those breasts. Which is where the problem comes in and why some women get annoyed. Look at their faces first. Treat them like women. Not just breasts that are sticking out wanting to be ogled (unless you’re looking at Abby – feel free to ogle then LOL)

    As for the sex as a commodity within a marriage – I don’t get that either. Although hubby and I will joke and if I don’t want to do the dishes I might say “I’ll give you a BJ if you do them!” but it’s just a joke. And I am like Chanize – i’m not doing it with somebody I’m angry with.

  28. July 18, 2012 @ 11:32 pm Tootie

    Well… I guess I need to chillax a bit. Your subsequent comments are much less offensive to me than your original writing.

    I guess you’re not a misogynist. And I can certainly understand the whole “got a lot of lunch money stolen in school” thing.

    So. I apologize. And I don’t do that lightly. Truce?

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