Are sex tips ruining sex or is it bad sex that’s ruining sex?

I spend a lot of time actively looking for relationship and dating articles online, but sometimes these things just turn up. I found this article while following a link to an article totally unrelated to dating. It’s a bit long, so I’ll sum it up for you, though it’s worth reading. Basically, it says that the abundance of sex tips in women’s magazines is ruining sex for people, because it makes it sound as if sex needs to be this ultra-complicated pursuit you see people do in porn. In fact, the article goes as far as saying that many of these tips originate in porn and that they are mostly aimed at pleasing men. Ultimately, says the author, people end up feeling that “just a bit of oral followed by the missionary position” is not good enough and feel that they have to turn the sexual act into some sort of hard labour. Well…

I’ll start by saying that it’s been a while since I’ve read any of those things, so my memory might be a bit out on what sort of stuff they suggest. I know myself that when your job involves writing a lot about the same subject, you end up struggling to find ideas. I’m sure a lot of the people who write these sex tips do actually get their ideas from porn, probably because their own sex lives are not that exciting and they need to come up with a bunch of new stuff to please their editor, rather than necessarily please the man or woman reading the article if they end up trying it in bed. I’m also sure they get briefs requiring them to include whatever fad that’s popular at the time. So if some celebrity was caught doing something in a sex tape, you can be sure that’ll be all over the mags faster than you can pull out a tissue. So yeah, some of that stuff can be pretty ridicilous and won’t have been tried by the people who wrote it.

On the other hand, sex within the context of a long term relationship can get pretty boring if all you ever do is the one position.

When your guy has that new boyfriend smell and you’re still getting to know each other sexually, you get excited about every bit of physical contact. If you swap partners often, then the fact that you’re with a different person is exciting enough, even if you stick to your usual positions and moves. But when you’re having sex hundreds of times with the same person over time, things are different. You’re basically going to have lots of different types of sex, according to your mood, your physical state, your circumstances, etc.. So there does need to be room for lazy sex, quick sex and even not very good sex (you can’t expect every single time to be perfect when you’re having lots of sex), but you also can’t go around limiting your sexual vocabulary to the basics without expecting things to eventually go very stale. I feel a bit mean saying it, but an article that jokes about oral sex “usually causing jaw ache rather than cataclysmic mutual orgasms” kinda screams “you’re doing it wrong” at me. I can’t help being reminded of the argument between British and French scientists about whether or not the female G-spot exists. Talk about living the “no sex please, we’re British” stereotype. Also, I think there maybe some flawed logic at work here. While women’s mags are definitely guilty of putting women in an obsessive state of mind about pretty much everything (“15 diet tips that work”, “how to keep your man from leaving you”, “is your vagina too ugly?”, etc.), the fact that they advise women on how to spice up their sex lives by pleasing the man doesn’t mean it’s unrealistic for women to want to stretch the limits of their own sex lives, nor does it mean that women don’t have fantasies that extend beyond the obvious.

So yes, there’s nothing wrong with any sexual position or move on its own, but if you’re a guy and your whole repertoire consists of the missionary position and you’re looking for a long term relationship, you’d better find yourself a woman who’s not really that much into sex, otherwise she’s gonna get real bored real quick. Spending hours setting up the bedroom with all kinds of silly stuff just so you can have a bit of a fondle can certainly be a chore, but so can having exactly the same shag every single time. While the sex tips offered by the freshly post virginal 20 year olds and frustrated demi-spinsters who write for women’s mags may be a bit far fetched and stupid, there’s no shortage of good stuff out there written by people whose sex lives are actually a tad more adventurous for real. The Internet is your friend and there are also books and videos out there that do a better job. So remember, kids consenting adults, experimentation is not a dirty word.

Our idea of evolutionary psychology is based on what now?

OK, so if, like me, you’ve heard all about how men are programmed to “cheat” by nature and women are the homemakers who are programmed to stay at home with one man and the kids, then you may be interested in this little bit of information, which I’d like to file deeply in the WTF pile. Apparently our understanding (as a species) of the genetic programming supposedly found in nature that inclines men towards cheating and women towards remaining faithful originated in a 1948 study conducted on…wait for it….fruit flies!

Yup, that’s right, the underlying assumption that has coloured countless studies since the day it was published was based on research into an insect. They didn’t even electrocute a monkey or anything before coming out with their far fetched conclusions, which seem to not really take into account that there is a teeny tiny difference between a human and a fly. More importantly, no one ever came back to the original study to try and recreate it to see if it really works as described. Until now, that is, when a new team of researchers have disproved it. As always, as humanity (in part, at least) moves gradually away from oldschool values, science eventually catches up with some proof or other to validate something people with common sense already know to be true.

So there you have it. Apparently women are just as programmed to have multiple partners as men (and fruit flies). Science approves this message, just like it recently acknowledged the fact that bisexuals exist. It’s a good thing we have female (and gay/bisexual) scientists nowadays or we’d forever be stuck in the past.