Ask Dr. Susan vs. Ask Dr. Laura: how do I escape from all the sluts?

Once again, I’m going to be tackling some advice that Dr. Laura has given (taken from transcripts on her website ), and look at it from a different, less awful perspective.

If you would like some similar not-awful advice, ask me! I am all-knowing. Except when I’m not. But mostly-knowing.

The question:

“I’m 16 years old and have been reading your book 10 Stupid Things Men Do To Mess Up Their Lives. Lately I’ve been having a problem with the females I’ve been dating. They always get it into their head that they have to do something sexual to keep me happy which is really starting to annoy me. I’d rather be with someone for who they are rather than be sexual with them. Is there any way I can get my dates to stop going for sex as a way to please me?”

Dr. Laura’s advice:

“It is amazing that we have a young man that is not going, “Hey the sexual revolution, the woman’s revolution, we get something for nothing, this is very good.” This is obviously a male that is already a man because he wants depth. And, girls are slutty these days, at all ages. They are starting earlier than 16 and going later than 40-something. It’s amazing, we had the feminist revolution in an attempt to make women think they were more than just their bodies, so what do they do now? They’re just being bodies! Very smart.

I think what you do is you tell the girls point blank out: I’m 16-years-old, I’m a hot blooded male, I would love to have sex all over the place that means nothing, but truly I’m more interested in having a real friendship with a girl and this is where I’m at. I’d like to shoot hoops, go to movies, talk about books and that’s where I am. And, I’m very proud of you because a lot of young men getting into all these sexual relationships at an early age one after another after another, become very crass about love, about women and about sex. And that doesn’t set you up well for imagining the beauty of making love to the mother of your children and the wife for the rest of your life. So, you’re doing this the smart way…ha!”

Dr. Susan’s advice: Ai yi yi. First–seriously, put down the book. I received a similar book by Dr. Laura for graduation from my high school math teacher (I am still puzzled. Did he think I would enjoy it? Learn something from it? Become a rabid feminist? Oh, if that last one was his goal, good job! It worked). Being a teenager is hard enough without somebody telling you how bad of a fuck-up you are and judging your every move. Surely you can find those people to ignore in your real life.

Second–don’t refer to women as females. Remove that word from your vocabulary. Wait. You can use the word female if you are talking about something in biology class, or non-human animals. Or ends of an extension cord. Otherwise, don’t. Words that are generally looked upon fondly by the fairer sex: women, ladies, geniuses, girls (if they are under about 18), um, some people are okay with the word “gal,” if you are Russian you can use the word devushka. Words that are generally frowned upon: the fairer sex, females, bitches, sluts, hos, meatlockers. I’ll give you a pass, because you are 16 and probably don’t have a feeling for how dehumanizing it is. In the future, though, knock it off.

Third–your reading of the situation might be right. Especially with the wonderful (just kidding, awful) prevalence of abstinence-only education, girls are taught that boys are frightening, sex-hungry beings that hit puberty and are only after One Thing. I don’t know what boys are taught in abstinence-only education, being a woman, but we learned unequivocally that boys would pressure you and pressure you and pressure you to put out, and we were even given a list of excuses (I think it was called “things to tell your boyfriend that you want to do instead of having sex”) which included a recipe for Better Than Sex cake which was, actually, better than sex. Better than most sex. But I digress.

Because of these messages, many girls come away from sex education with some absolute truths in their heads: first, that boys will not be happy unless you have sex with them. Second, that girls are not supposed to feel any sort of stirrings of their own. With the other messages being hammered into girls about self-worth and the importance of having a male counterpart (I use “male” here because I’m trying to point out that any person with the right hardware will do. See how annoying that could be if you are talking about people you actually like?), it is not unlikely that many girls will come to the conclusion that to get a boyfriend, which is critical, you must perform sexual acts.

But your reading might be wrong. Many girls at age 16, despite what their education tells them, are sexual beings. They may not be “throwing themselves” at you because they want to please you, but instead, because they want to please themselves, and to be pleased. Dr. Laura mentioned that girls these days are huge sluts, from younger than 16 to older than 40. I think what she meant to say was that they have sexual desires, which is true, and not really shocking. I also think she is suggesting that women above the age of 40 should be celibate, which is puzzling, and disturbing, especially given that women hit their sexual peak in their late 20s and early 30s. At any rate, these slutty slutty girls may be experiencing completely natural desire, and may be interested in pursuing those feelings, physically, with you.

Which brings me to a question. You are basing your actions on what you believe the desires of the girls are (or are not). Are you interested in physical relationships? Dr. Laura assumes that you are, because you have a penis. It is completely normal to not be looking for sex yourself. The first thing you want to do is sort out for yourself what you are looking for, and to try to determine what your girlfriends are looking for. Dr. Laura is right about one thing–the best thing to do is to have upfront conversations with the girls, and make it clear that you are interested in all sorts of things that are not sex. Tread lightly, though–if the girls are interested in sex because they actually want sex, your “reassurances” about not needing sex may actually come across as rejection.

The most important thing that you can do is to start thinking about girls as people, instead of as unapproachable creatures that follow certain patterns. It feels very awkward to bring up conversations of sex, especially when you aren’t sure what they (or you) are looking for, but the sooner you become comfortable with open communication, the more fulfilling all of your future relationships will be.

Oh–and having sex, wanting to have sex, enjoying sex, or pursuing sex does not reduce a woman to only a body. Instead, it allows women to take back some of the power involved with sex, and to own their physical selves. Pretending like desires do not exist and rigidly self-enforcing chastity does not make you a more mindful person; it creates a prison, and when sex does happen, every bit of it is under the control of the partner. To suggest that a woman who is sexual is nothing more than a body is like saying that somebody who enjoys listening to music is nothing more than a pair of ears. The feminist revolution allows women to feel comfortable in their own skin and believe in themselves, instead of cowering behind social conventions that dictate what is and is not acceptable. Which might mean nothing to you, 16-year-old boy, but especially as you get older: don’t wave Dr. Laura materials around in front of potential mates’ noses, as those females that are throwing themselves at you will be quick to scatter if they know you support such woman-hating propaganda.

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Susan

I am old and wise. Perhaps more old than wise, but once you're old, you don't give a shit about details anymore.

8 thoughts on “Ask Dr. Susan vs. Ask Dr. Laura: how do I escape from all the sluts?”

  1. Oh the poor misguided youths. When I was an adolescent girl-woman, I had to deal with worse than Dr. Laura (which is scary to consider, I know), also known as the Catholic Chruch and I think we all know their ass backwards stance on sexuality. But needless to say, it really messed with my brain a lot. Especially since I like(d) masturbation a lot, and I had no idea I was ~ sinning ~.

    Again, wonderful take down. Keep sticking it to Dr. Laura too. So that maybe one day I don’t have to shelve her awful books at my library. (Seriously, working at a public library has almost made me support censorship. Except, I wouldn’t burn the classically banned books, but you know Dr. Laura, Debbie Macomber, James Patterson, Nora Roberts, etc. People unqualified to be publishing–notice I didn’t say writing–so many things. And I wouldn’t burn any books at all given the choice, I would turn them back into pulp and print something good on them instead).

    1. I can’t figure out whether she is gaining popularity (she moved to satellite radio) or losing it (there was a scandal with her son that pushed her out of print, I think, and every time I bring her up my mom says, “don’t forget, she was estranged from her own mother,” so gossip is probably hurting her some).

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