Originally Posted by Vinccenzo
The one penis policy thought does run common with a few destructive themes.
That sex is something men do to women, not something they have with a woman and certainly never the other way around (heterosexually speaking of course). And through this it either is regrettable for the woman as if she stands less to gain from it like he does.Or regrettable to the man because his needs being so much greater he must use her in such a fashion. It implies he has power in the relationship she doesn't. It implies that a woman's desire should be lower by nature than any man's desire. This can cause sex to seem a bad/dirty thing to the woman over time and the one of the ways she can avoid feeling powerless is to say no to intimacy.
Now, I'm not trying to accuse Fig of being a bad person here. This mentality is born of echos from a male dominated history that gets reduced with every new generation. Trying to shame you over it would be, to me anyway, like shaming someone from that fight/flight feeling one gets when they realize a snake is near them in the woods. It can feel instinctual.
But it is the words used in BaB and Fig's posts that stuck out to me and drew my attention. He notices the imbalance but words it as something that just is - making me wonder if the women in his life have to do more adjusting for him than he does for them. I don't think it is malicious but it can cause a lack of care for his needs as a passive payback on their part. I'd even go so far as to wonder if his soon to be ex wife might not be so asexual as it would seem. She tells him she regrets it, but seeing as his feeling on the matter "just are", she might not feel any other answer on the matter would be well received by him. They are already divorcing. Upsetting him more might feel a further risk for rejection to her.
I took note that one of the motivations she had for sleeping with the fella was curiosity. Curiosity about sex is healthy and she should feel like she can act on her curiosities without angering Fig. He feels wife put herself at risk? - Does Fig also feel he is at risk when he chooses to be with someone else? Are the motivations of women something he should be on guard for too? Or is it just a risk for women? Are the motivations of men always bad? All this can make sex seem scary and sinister.
Shouldn't she be angry with him for his actions with BaB? Or not so because its different for him being a man? She may be seeking a way to identify with his behavior and heal herself. I also notice that she was curious and acted on it but once the fella wanted to have sex again, she shut it down proving she is still the one in control of what happens to her body. The first time SHE CHOSE. His request could have been seen by her as taking her power to choose.
Also to the assumption that she did this because Fig deprived her of tokens and affection. I get why he would assume this as it is why he sought out someone else when he felt deprived of intimacy. It still implies she can't have wanted intimacy with someone new too. She also followed it up with "and all it did was reinforce that I don't want to have sex". So she is still safe from feeling like she has to now have sex with Fig again at his request.
I guess what I'm saying is dealing with this mentality regarding sex and woman's role within it could have put a damper on the soon to be ex wife's sexual desire for Fig. Causing a lack of intimacy between them. Causing Fig to look elsewhere while still not being able to accept it from the two women in his life. Just some possibilities to chew on and discuss.
Just checked in here before walking out of the door in a few minutes, and wanted to post a quick reply, though I intend to come back later with a more thorough one. No promises though.
First few thoughts - as someone with a degree in Women's Studies, I totally get this line of thinking.
It seems to me that for this analysis to work here, the three of us would have to be unaware of and therefore unconsciously embrace this very patriarchal construct. The first premise: that sex is something men do to women is the underlier of the whole argument, and though I may not always be the most self-aware and insightful person, I am very confident that none of us in this arrangement feels that way.
But really, my biggest problem with this whole argument is the part where it assumes that Fig's wife feels like she has no agency and is (perhaps unconsciously) using her sexuality to exert otherwise absent control in the face of insidious oppression.
She has and exerts her own agency all of the time. Her asexuality is a real thing and not derivative of some roiling internal unresolved psychological state. She does not have and never has had a subversive agenda.
She's amazing, in control of her own life, and we should not insult her - or him - by pretending otherwise. Sure, she's got some self-discovery to do given that until not that long ago she'd never considered that she was asexual, but that doesn't mean that we should not listen to her words and respect her self-assertions.