Normalizing Sex

In the latest edition of Salvo Magazine (which you can subscribe to by clicking here), I pointed out that one of the subversive features of the over-sexualized environment our children are growing up in is that they are becoming desensitized. In a society where sex is used to sell everything from shoes to vegetables, the danger is that children become so used to it that they cease to consider things to be sexual which clearly are.
 
This struck me when the BBC did a documentary on the sexualization of children and Sophie Raworth visited 13-year old Chloe. Dressed skimpily and imitating the erotic dancers she had seen on television, Chloe’s dream is to go all over world as a dancer. Raworth asked Chloe if she was trying to be sexual. Chloe confessed that there was nothing sexual in her mind when she was dancing. Moreover, she said, as long as she kept her clothes on, there was nothing inappropriate about her moves.
 
Certainly the self-evaluation of a 13-year old girl should be taken with a heavy pinch of salt. Yet as I point out in my Salvo article 'Sex & the Kiddies: The Sexualization of Children & How Advertising & Entertainment Change Their Brains', I think there is an important lesson to be learned from the fact that Chloe failed to acknowledge the obvious eroticism of her behaviour. As our children are bombarded with more and more sexual stimuli, one effect is that they cease to even see certain things as sexual, with the consequence that important barriers are lowered.

Chloe found this out in a rather disturbing way when she was eleven. A stranger who had seen some of the dance moves Chloe posted online contacted her to tell her how sexy she was. Chloe panicked and immediately removed all the videos.
 
ReichYet the question remains: how have young people like Chloe managed to convince themselves that all but the most explicit displays (in Chloe’s case, taking off her clothes) are non-sexual and benign? And do the products and media that girls like her are able to so easily access have anything to do with this?

The answer to this question may lay in the thought of one of the early pioneers of the sex education movement. In his book The Sexual Revolution, Wilhelm Reich (1897–1957) described the means for achieving a society that would not put any obstacles in the path of sexual gratification. I have discussed Reich in my Salvo article, in which I point out that

For all his moral anarchism, Reich was perceptive. He realized that in order to achieve the type of sexual utopia he desired, he must first move society away from the shyness and embarrassment surrounding sex. In particular, he argued, people must lose their reluctance to expose erotically important parts of their bodies. Reich attempted to facilitate this by having psychotherapy sessions in which he would require his clients to remove all their clothes.

Reich would be pleased if he coWReichuld see a European summer today, which is more in keeping with his ideal than what we find in brothels. In a brothel, women have overcome the natural shyness surrounding erotically important parts of their bodies in order to advertise sex; on a sunny beach, scores of women can be seen who have overcome this natural shyness with no thought of sex at all. Indeed, by refusing to explicitly acknowledge the erotic implications of minimalistic attire, we are fast approaching Reich’s goal of a society in which shyness has been overcome and sex is flattened of its inherent potency. “Profane” best describes Reich’s ideal and its realization in the contemporary situation, given that the term originally meant “to treat as common.”

The current debate about the sexualization of children needs to be charted within this same rubric. Certainly when low-cut blouses are marketed for 13-year olds, when music videos for children are saturated with sexual imagery and when sex is constantly used to sell products to young teens, the result is going to be that many girls will become hyper-sexualized. However, such saturation can equally have a desensitizing effect since it unconsciously orients youth to treat their sexuality as something trivial, benign and commonplace. Either way, it primes girls for perverts like Reich: the former because hyper-sexualized girls will want to have sex; the latter because girls are less likely to guard and protect that which they have been oriented to treat as being merely common.

To read more about this, subscribe to Salvo magazine and turn to my article, 'Sex & the Kiddies: The Sexualization of Children & How Advertising & Entertainment Change Their Brains.'

One thought on “Normalizing Sex

  1. How long in a relationship do you go with out hvaing sex?*no more than a wkIs sex that important in a relationship?*absolutely importantWhat if you were hvaing sex with your partner before you became a couple, but after the sex stop, how would you feel?*very hurt to start Do you feel if your partner isn92t hvaing sex with you, they are hvaing sex with someone else?*depends.What does it mean if you partner says no sex because 93we are there yet94?Do you feel lonely in your relationship without sex?*hell yes!What if there is NO intimacy at all, what should you do?*ask why, can it be fixed, if not them leaveIs the problem caused by your partner talking only bout SEX. Everything revolves around SEX?*hey it’s important, so why not talk about it?Could it be because you & / Or your partner don92t feel good about their body?*yesIs it because sex between you and your partner is WACK?*maybe but that would be found out in the first few sessions wouldn’t it?Could it be your sexual education is way lower than your partner or vise versa?lol. Education? how about drive? sometimes ppls drives change and you and your partner aren’t on the same sex page and that’s okay. Choices are either stay and work it out, not work it out and or leave it alone and keep it movingWhat if your partner is not able to rise to the occasion, do you up and leave?*it’s understandable that one of the partners will just not be able to rise up for the occasion, it happens. However, if it’s repeatedly, then somethings up and should be addressed.If your the one holding out, what is it that your partner needs to do to help correct this issue?*sexual blackmail is just wrong no matter which partner is holding out. Why bother being in a relationship if someone tries to control the other one by holding out? Why does the holdee feel they can treat their partner with this type of action? Holding out is the act of power tripping, imho

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