Friday, June 19, 2009

Sex & humiliation (by Suzie)

Remember the stories that suggested female bullying was just as bad than male bullying because boys got it out of their system in quick fights, while girls inflicted mental cruelty?

Maybe not. Exhibit A: The “animalistic brutality” of “the boys' middle school locker room,” as described in this newspaper article, written after a 13-year-old accused four classmates of rape. The reporter quotes Susan Lipkins, a psychologist and author of "Preventing Hazing: How Parents, Teachers and Coaches Can Stop the Violence, Harassment, and Humiliation," who says half of the reported cases involve sexual assault. The reporter adds: “That's because anal penetration is the ultimate form of humiliation.”

Because it’s associated with gays? Yes, in part, but I’m sure the boys accused of using a broom handle and hockey stick don’t consider themselves gay. Apparently, penetrating isn’t humiliating; being penetrated is. Being penetrated makes you someone’s bitch, someone’s woman.

If boys think anal penetration is the ultimate humiliation, what does that say about the trendiness of anal sex among heterosexual adults?

If I ever want to NOT be in the mood, all I have to do is read a lad mag like Details, which ran this story in 2007 about the popularity of anal sex among heterosexuals. (The link is not safe for work.) Actually, the article is about men penetrating women, never women penetrating men, as in the popular video “Bend Over Boyfriend.” In the article, some men say they like anal sex because it’s a score they can brag about with other men, or they feel like they’re dominating the woman.

As long as sex is seen as a way to dominate others, to humiliate them, to prove superiority, we can’t escape rape.