The way we talk about consent in our society doesn’t seem to be working. This post can be considered an expansion of yesterday’s article. Focusing specifically on issues of consent, it’s necessary to first establish just what “consent” means. The way it is framed in discussions of sexual assault and rape, it is treated as a question with a binary answer. “Yes, I consent to sex” or “No, I don’t.” That’s not to say no one explores consent in a more nuanced fashion, but those approaches often fall by the wayside.
I am reluctant to call this a review. Let us instead call it a list of impressions, and some comparisons. If you’ve never heard of Fun Home, it currently exists in two forms: a 2006 graphic novel, and its more recent adaptation as a Broadway musical. It is the memoir of Alison Bechdel of Bechdel test fame. Both versions are about Ms. Bechdel coming to terms with her own sexuality while at the same time realizing her father was gay (or at least bisexual; this is somewhat ambiguous).
This is a topic that, although I have no professional experience or qualifications with, I have quite a bit of personal experience to speak to. I do not have borderline personality disorder (BPD) myself, but I have had many friends and family members with it, and was involved with (and married to) a woman with BPD for many years. I’d been meaning to write something about this for a while. I suppose I didn’t find just the right “spark” until this past weekend, when a friend linked an article on BPDFamily.
I recently had a conversion with a friend about the idea of exchanging money for sex–what one would also describe as sex work, or prostitution (though the latter word is not at all preferred). The question became whether I, personally, would entertain the notion of being paid for sex. Well, why not? It’s something I enjoy anyway. It’s not something I would ever ask to paid for, and I don’t see why I would accept money from a friend or romantic partner, but I’m not totally against the idea.
Every so often I’ll come across some guy lamenting that women just can’t take a compliment anymore, as if what was once a sea of happily receptive women has been hardened into a glacier of frigid ice queens. Nothing I say here will be news to women, who live with the reality every day. My audience here is the hypothetical heterosexual man who is perturbed that he’s not allowed to tell women what he thinks of their appearance.
Have you heard of polyamory? Don’t know what it is? Have questions about it but don’t know where to find answers? This post will try to shed some light! Before I begin, I must lay out one of my personal rules: on topics involving relationships and sexuality, my experience is my experience. It isn’t yours, it isn’t anyone else’s. My experience is no more valid than anyone else’s. If others describe polyamory differently (and no doubt, many do), that doesn’t mean someone is wrong, we’ve simply had different experiences.