Social Question

Demosthenes's avatar

What are the downsides of sexual liberation?

Asked by Demosthenes (14909points) September 11th, 2022
45 responses
“Great Question” (2points)

In what ways has sexual liberation harmed society? What do you think is responsible for the increase in “incel violence”? Is the ubiquity of porn irreversibly harming sexual dynamics between men and women? Do you think hookup culture harms women more than it does men (does “friends with benefits” always end up hurting at least one of the people in the arrangement)?

These are just some question ideas. I am intending for this to be a broad discussion. No need to answer all of what I posted above. But I was inspired to ask this by some essays I’ve recently read by feminists grappling with the negative aspects of sexual liberation and the inadequacy of “consent” being the only measure of healthy and acceptable sexuality.

Observing members: 0
Composing members: 0

Answers

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I hooked up in the second semester of my first year university. We forgot to go to class and eat, and we ordered a lot on our credit cards from Boston Pizza. I eventually failed out and became unstable from all of the toxic drama.

The First year/First semester I had perfect attendance, and passed all of my classes. The second year I failed everything except ethics and the optional psychical education class. The resident assistants tried breaking us up but was too late. All sides played the victim card and the year was a mulligan.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

@RedDeerGuy1 Also somewhere in summer between second semester of the first year and first semester of the second year I broke down, and started believing that I was ageless and traveling through time in a loop. I got in fights with family and friends and lost most of them. It took 22 years to get past it. Now I just want to be a career councilor and to make free online quizzes and reference material for fun from what I learn from the psychology classes that I will eventually take when I save up money.

elbanditoroso's avatar

For whom, @Demosthenes?

I think that sexual liberation has been generally good for women. It has been very positive for male and female homosexuals (as they were called historically, or gays and lesbians (as they are known now.)

Sexual liberation has not been good for trans people – in fact possible worse than in the pre-sexual liberation days. Some of the other varieties of sexual identity – I’m not sure I could name them all – it’s a mixed bag. Some have thrived, others have not.

I think that the one group that has been most affected (I’m not going to say negatively affected – but they would perceive it that way) are herterosexual males.

I see that as a result of the empowerment of the other groups achieveing their sexual liberation, which heterosexual men see/saw as a threat to the ‘head of household, boss of women’ mentality.

As for hookup culture, it’s a manifestation of womens’ autonomy and ability to make choices. Men have traditionally had the power in the one-night-stand dynamic, and with the liberation of women and sexual mores, women now have similar power and decision making capability. So hookups, or women-initiated sexual activity (or both) are examples of how sexual liberation empowered women.

I’m a little off topic here, @Demosthenes but I think there isn’t one single answer.

HP's avatar

Other than the increased prevalence of STDs I see no down side.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

People are becoming more sexually inactive so I guess the appeal of forbidden fruit reduces to just fruit when it’s not taboo anymore.
Honestly, I never “hooked up” It’s just not meaningful enough when you can have a steady girlfriend that you actually give two shits about.
It’s nothing but good when people can openly be in a relationship with who they want.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

@Blackwater_Park Oh I misunderstood what hook up was. I had one girlfriend steady four 4 months. We just made out and kissed a bit.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

@RedDeerGuy1 “4 months” That’s a girlfriend and not a “hook up”

Dutchess_III's avatar

In my experience if I didn’t want to hook up for a one night stand I was called “A cold bitch.”

seawulf575's avatar

I think there is a toxic culture in the US that denigrates men. We have created a society where merely talking to a woman can lead to legal hassles if the woman wants to make it go that way. If you are at work and a woman comes in wearing a very nice outfit and you tell her she looks nice in it, you run the risk of getting hauled aside to be talked to about sexual harassment. It has even gotten so silly now that if you don’t use the pronouns that someone wants you to use (not sure how your are supposed to know) you can be branded with microaggression or even lose your job.

I think that Women’s Lib was actually a good thing, but like so many other things, was taken WAY too far to wrong way.

KNOWITALL's avatar

We don’t NEED men anymore. So they have to work harder and be better humans, which some could see as a negative.

HP's avatar

Clearly we men have it rough. Why did we ever give those troublesome women the vote? Now I hear they’re hopping mad over this Roe thing and registering to vote in droves. This sexual revolution thing is the devil’s work and women are his instrument. They’re out of control. There was a time when they they knew their place. In the good ol days when we kept em pregnant and tied to the stove.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

Considering women only represent like 3–4% of people in trades like plumbing, welding, construction, electricians etc… I’d say men are still necessary. They’re doing most of the real work.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Blackwater_Park Considering my generation (GenX) wasn’t encouraged/allowed to take shop, mechanics or anything like that for trades, you’re right. For now.

I love engines and electrical, myself, so we just need oportunities. I

Blackwater_Park's avatar

@KNOWITALL You’re needed, desperately. The opportunities are there and have been for a long time. Honestly, men were discouraged to a degree in gen x too. They were pushed to the college route so there is a critical shortage in skilled trades.

seawulf575's avatar

@KNOWITALL Your statement shows exactly how denigrating society is to men. “We don’t NEED men anymore.” Please note I never once said that men were more important than women, or that men were necessary. but you immediately started stating that men are not needed. Imagine if I had said women weren’t needed? What would you have thought about me? But you see it as somehow okay to discount 50% of humanity.

Demosthenes's avatar

@seawulf575 I think she was simply stating a fact that a woman doesn’t need a man to survive in a way that she needed one in previous eras of human history. Not that she personally thinks men are worthless.

seawulf575's avatar

@Demosthenes I agree that a woman is capable of doing anything a man is capable of (with a few exceptions such as impregnating a woman). I also agree that a man is capable of doing anything a woman can do (again, with exceptions such as giving birth to a baby). Yet we don’t ever really address that. If you watch TV, men are portrayed as being either brainless man-children or semi-literate Neanderthals. Women are not portrayed that way or in those stereotypes. And all this brings me back to a toxic culture that denigrates men.

hat's avatar

@Demosthenes – Looks ^ like this thread should have included a trigger warning. :)

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Demosthenes Of course that’s what I meant. I love men.

@Seawulf_575 Well as a white male you had all the power, votes and say for a very long time. I’ve explained here before that I think many of you are struggling with not being ‘needed” in society so lashing out is to be expected.
I may want a man, but no I never needed one as an adult to survive, sorry.

seawulf575's avatar

@KNOWITALL And I struggle with statements like I had all the power and votes and say for a long time. I grew up not expecting any hand outs, not assuming my word had any power. Dad had a break down when I was 10 and mom ended up working 3 jobs to keep a roof over our heads and food in our stomachs. All while watching her husband fall apart. She taught me a lot about personal responsibility. I tried putting myself through college but didn’t qualify for student loans because, with mom working 3 jobs, she made just too much money for us to be considered as poverty or needy and because we were white we didn’t qualify for the numerous benefit available to those of color or foreigners. I worked to support myself from the time I was 18 and for a time I was paying rent and food and college. But I didn’t know what I wanted to do. So I went to look at the military…along with thousands of other young people of many races. I went in, was smart enough to qualify for the nuclear power program, and ended up getting a really good, though strenuous, education. Picture cramming 4–6 years of college into 6 months. Amazingly, there were whites, blacks, hispanics, men, women…everyone in this program. I served reliably for 6 years and then decided to get out to start a family. So where have I had all the power, votes, and say? I was just as challenged as everyone else…more so than some.

Then I got married and had kids. The (now ex) wife was a mental case. When it got to her putting the lives of the children in danger on an almost daily basis, I had to file for divorce. But hey! here’s a surprise for you: Divorce courts favor the woman 100% of the time. If a man wants equality he has to have documented evidence that the woman is completely unfit. Thankfully I was that man and I ended up getting custody of the kids….6, 2.5, and 2.5 years old at the time. I was suddenly a single father of 3, working rotating shift work and somehow I managed to make things work out. So apparently the woman in my life at that time was a hazard instead of a blessing.

But here’s the key: I don’t look at all women as being somehow privileged. I don’t look at all women as being psycho like my ex. I look at all women as being human. However I will tell you that I set myself 3 standards for a woman before I would consider getting serious with her. (1) She had to be capable of rational thought (2) She had to be able to face reality without the help of pharmaceuticals, legal or illegal, and (3) she had to be with me because of who I was and because she wanted to be with me, not because of something she felt I could give her. Now, I will tell you that sounds simple, doesn’t it? You’d think I should be able to find a woman like that just about anywhere. I was single for 5 years before finding one that met all three.

So when someone tells me about how privileged I was growing up, how good I really had it, I’m picturing someone with a victim mentality that feels they are somehow owed something or entitled to something. And before you get all huffy, think about it. What benefit did I ever have that most people in this country don’t have? Where was I given anything? And when you think about that, tell me where you come up with me having all these wonderful benefits in my life when I was growing up.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@seawulf575 Well moving forward just know this wasn’t about you personally. Bye.

Forever_Free's avatar

The psychological and emotional scars resulting from uncommitted sexual relationships precipitate anxiety, low self-esteem, suicidal tendencies, divorce, and family breakdown. Sexually transmitted diseases, including AIDS, and unwanted pregnancies raise concerns about public health and welfare.

HP's avatar

Well, I’ll tell you the upside to the liberation of women that hadn’t occurred to me. It was brought to my attention by a woman. She says its a good bet that it isn’t the men who can get a litlle now & then who busy themselves shooting up schools or theaters.

JLoon's avatar

The downside is that it’s “liberated” nearly as much ignorance and oppression as personal freedom and emotional discovery. And the proof is everwhere from public discourse like this, to sexual con games at work, to jacked up abortion laws that put politicians inside bedrooms and wombs.

Is it that men are evil and women are stupid? No. At least I don’t think so… But the process of giving women the freedom & resources to define sexuality on their own terms hasn’t brought males and females to the same understanding at the same time. And it has to.

I enjoy my right to look as good as I feel, and to choose the partners I want as often as I want without apologies. Casual sex doesn’t mean reckless selfishness, and non committed relationships are not automatically destructive and unhealthy. What I do and who I do it with requires me to be in control of my body and my desires, but it also calls for others to respect my choices and not assume that I’m a sexual vending machine.

What we all need and have always needed, is some common ground where we can honestly embrace the different ways we love each other. I think that was the hope and the promise of the movement for sexual liberation that began 60 years ago. And it’s still worth the struggle that female, male, gay, bi, trans, and all human beings face every day.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I touched on this above, but I think many men assume women were as excited about the “New” freedom and we’d be wandering in packs just looking to get laid. However woman have always had the ability to get laid when ever they want, so nothing really changed for us.
Plus we’re still called whores and sluts for what ever reason.

Forever_Free's avatar

@Dutchess_III This is not about gender. I am sorry you feel that way, but “many” males are not like that at all.

hat's avatar

@chefl: “Maybe what J.K Rowling says…”

Rowling is a TERF bigot piece of shit.

Demosthenes's avatar

@chefl Wow, that is a big Wikipedia sub-section!

But yeah, that is another perspective of the negatives of sexual liberation. One feminist I was reading was complaining that it has led to men (i.e. trans women) deciding what a woman is.

chefl's avatar

This OP is one of the best ones I’ve seen. It’s anti-fake news. Not so much, very not so much, when it comes to the answers though.

chefl's avatar

….Except for @Forever_Free‘s and @seawulf 575’s (in alphabetical order) answers (edited)

HP's avatar

It is actually an irrefutable argument against the designation of men or women’s sports.

JLoon's avatar

Yeah.

Right.

What I think I see from responses on this thread so far, is a majority of uncomfortable males who see any debate over aspects of sexual liberation as their chance to vent bruised feelings and invalidate any idea that females and gay, lesbian, trans, or asexual people should be free to choose and live out their own identity.

I’m sure somewhere along the way an ex wife, girlfriend, or even your mommy, has let you down. Take it up with them. This question really involves much more, and the rest of us are trying to do much more than just settle scores.

chefl's avatar

@JLoon Based on your posts you sound like you might be highly interested in real women’s issues, like the pay gap etc, the way you don’t refer to just bedroom activities, since it’s the last thing on the list, am I right? Please Look at my next OP.

chefl's avatar

@JLoon Women aiming for liberation doesn’t involve doing whatever inadvisible activities that lead to unplanned pregnancy, swiping right, date rape, etc. That is being unclear on the concept of liberation/equality? Is that what you’re trying to say?

JLoon's avatar

@chefl – Hmmm – Well thanks for asking. I’ll try to be clear.

I think it’s useful to remember that the idea of greater sexual freedom and “women’s liberation” grew out of the social revolution of the 1960’s, and two things in particular: The civil rights movement, and development of safe and effective birth control pills.

I’m just thirty and for me those times are history, but it seems clear to me that those shifts in law, science, and culture laid the foundation for much of what we continue to think, and do, and expect today. I think that probably includes some of the facts and assumptions behind this question.

To me sexual liberation is not just one aspect of one thing, and it’s more than a philosophical concept. It’s alive, it’s personal, it involves the work I do, the relationships I have, the way I make love, how I plan for the future, my attitude toward authority, and the expectations I have for myself and others.

Because for me sex is a starting point, but not the end of everything that I am. It means if I have the right to be sexually open with my partner, I can also go to my boss tell them I think I’m being underpaid. And I think other people should be allowed the same respect and freedom, because whenever that’s possible we all live a little better.

But it’s not a perfect plan. It’s fair to say that there’s a downside to sexual liberation. That’s true for religion, capitalism, politics, and science. Everywhere we turn there’s shit to clean up. And the only way to get the job done is to work together.

HP's avatar

Though they are clearly tandem issues, there is of course a distinction between women’s liberation and sexual liberation. While the second would be impossible minus the former, there can be little argument as to the net positives in both. Despite temporary regressions such as the thinly veiled overturning of Wade, those 5 old Catholics in the robes can’t live forever, and the momentum against the mistake they made this time is going to bite those who pushed that mistake in their creaky behinds—and soon!

chefl's avatar

@JLoon I was expecting “Chefl, I see your sarcasm.” instead of “Well thanks for asking. I’ll try to be clear.,....”

How about, I see that you addressed the links I posted re. J.K Rowling and Navratalova (supporting their position of course) and transgenders in women’s sports, (supporting their position of course). Or that you will.

(Edited)

chefl's avatar

@JLoon re. part of my post above, please read , ”@JLoon , I see that you addressed the links I posted re. J.K Rowling and Navratalova (supporting their position of course) and transgenders in women’s sports, (supporting their position of course). Or that you will.”

JLoon's avatar

@chefl – Lets try to get this straight once and for all.

• This is a question and answer forum featuring free, member generated content on the open internet.

• Posting a question, or an answer doesn’t give anyone an automatic right to make personal demands of other members.

• If a question asks for opinons rather than factual answers anyone can agree, or disagree with a response – or ignore it in order to express other thoughts and feelings.

• You addressed a very confused and disjointed comment directly to me personally. I’m still not sure exactly what you meant. I realize you that you’re often agitated, and frankly irrational – But I decided to explain my opinion anyway out of respect for the original question, not because I feel like entertaining you.

• The answers that I’ve already given here are the only ones you’re going to get. I’m not wasting any more time on lame sarcasm or whatever else you have in mind.

If you’re unhappy with any of this, try some other discussion on some other forum. Or maybe speak to a qualified mental health professional.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Me thinks we’ve gone down a rabbit hole.

chefl's avatar

@JLoon The topic (the OP) the “consent“not being good enough etc. etc., the links in answers J.K Rowling, Navratalova (and others) re. trangender in womens’ sports, and the link re. plastic surgery which are not disjointed and not in need of mental health professional. Also there is I’m a woman men are bad on more than one post. At least the “males are bad” is missing in posts this thread, it has turned into “And the only way to get the job done is to work together.” which is an improvement whatever brought that about.

It’s a male who posted the OP, instead of a female, isn’t that interesting? It’s not really.
I don’t believe women’s issues is all about me or any one woman.
(Edited)

chefl's avatar

@JLoon When we post anything on a Q&A site etc, we should expect, and want to be challenged whenever necessary. We shouldn’t expect a free pass no matter what we post. It comes with the territory. So, if I need to discourage anyone by calling hime/her names just because he/she challenges me it only exposes how fragile I feel my position is.

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.

Mobile | Desktop


Send Feedback   

`