It's a natural occurrence between lovers, sometimes friends, and yes, even strangers.
But over time, largely due to expectations gleaned from the fruits of the porn industry, sex has morphed into much more than a primordially instinctual activity.
It has become more than itself, strapped with new, socialized expectations. Since sex isn't “just sex” anymore, women are left to navigate the anxiety and paranoia associated with their bed-sheet performances.
Because now, it seem like the biggest insult a woman could receive is an accusation about her being sexually unadventurous. In fact, such would be more than an insult; it would be a character flaw.
When did sex become more than sex?
Originally created to appeal to a chauvinist mentality in which women belong to men, the now multi-million dollar porn industry set the precedent that it is okay for women to be viewed as men's sex slaves.
My main gripe with porn is that it clouds the line between fantasy and reality. It — even if only subconsciously — lets men earnestly believe that sex is about superiority and that women are objects to dominate.
Just because a lucky guy in a porn flick gets to have dirty sex with a busty lady doesn't automatically make all sex (or most sex) similar.
But since many young men have had more experience with porn than with real sex (probably many had their first sexual experience with porn rather than with real sex), this reality is difficult to foster even amongst the most unassuming, sensitive men.
Porn requires the actors to actually experience the “fantasy” they are selling. Although the films feature consensual actors, the women being slapped or gagged in the scenes are actually being slapped or gagged.
This makes the notion of porn being a constructed entertainment model (and not a reality) an even more difficult concept to accept. The rough sex, violence and the power dynamics between the actors on screen is seeping into all the regular Joes' perception of sex.
Believe it or not, but just like violent video games have been blamed for the rise of violence in real life, too much exposure to this sort of behavior in porn, has slowly started to make rough sex acceptable — if not expected — as well.
These films feature women performing kinky acts that many women wouldn't want to do or simply couldn't.
They are being thrown around, bossed around, choked and mistreated. But yet, ladies are asking their girlfriends if they are boring or prude regarding sex just because maybe spanking, or some other form of BDSM that their boyfriends are used to seeing in pornos, doesn't seem to appeal.
Many girls aren't “freaks in the sheets” and don't want to be defined as submissive (or dominant). They are not into the whole humiliation and manipulation thing and feeling powerless at someone's mercy.
Some guys get off when they see images of women in schoolgirl outfits and enjoy general role-play. They like using toys, treating women submissively by telling them to “do this,” “do that,” “go here,” “go there” and, sometimes, in order for girls to feel that they can satisfy their men, they begrudgingly comply.
In order to feel good about their performances in bed, many girls feel that they're competing with porn stars. More and more, they presume that men want this kind of woman, that this is her in-bed expectation.
Obviously, men have their issues to worry about as well. But while men are anxious about their size, their erection, how long they will last and if they are hitting the right spot, women are often worrying about how they look in certain positions, how they sound, if their facial expressions are sexy or not.
Women also feel pressured about oral sex skills. Even though going down on a guy can be fun, it is absolutely necessary to know what you're doing.
Then there's the whole position thing to worry about; if you aren't on top, then you're just the plain boring “starfish.” And when you are on top, guys want to see the bounciness like they see on pornos, yet in reality, girls get more pleasure grinding on his member with a forward/backward motion rather than bouncing vertically.
Men are also more visually stimulated than women are, so there is an automatic pressure on the woman to put on a show.
If the sex isn't X-rated enough, then it's not good enough. This puts a tremendous amount of pressure on girls to put on a performance in bed, and I'm not just talking about the normal stuff.
Guys have grown to just assume that every girl wants her face covered with… him. It's enraging. The social acceptance of coming on a girl's face is the norm, and if she doesn't swallow or deep throat, then she sucks in bed; if she doesn't arch her back, she's all the sudden a bad lay.
Women may find that simply “making love” is an antiquated act. The whole sensuality and tenderness of making love seems to have disappeared from many contemporary relationships and has been largely replaced with bent-over-the-coffee-table, kinky sex. To me, that's just primal, carnal lust; the same carnal lust that men get watching these pornographic videos.
Obviously, every time two (or three, since porn has also made the whole third-party sex thing normal) people engage in sex it can't be magical and dreamlike, but at the same time, it shouldn't be so aggressive, manipulative or hostile toward women — the way porn makes it seem.
Both partners are supposed to enjoy sex without any judgment, but in this generation, with the rise of porn, it has become an act for men. And furthermore, the associated double standard is troublesome.
Think about it, when a girl is riding a guy, what's he doing? Lying there, simply enjoying it, right? He's not really moving, he's not arching his back, he's not moaning, he's not doing anything really.
But as soon as the girl takes on the same role of just “enjoying it” and not doing anything, she is automatically a lazy, bad partner in bed. Talk about unfairness. Whatever happened to selfless love?