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 Post subject: Re: around and around
PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:32 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2016 10:08 am
Posts: 190
Dnell, thank you for your beautiful sentiments. I too fear where we are heading as a society particularly as the speed of communications and the anonymity of the internet is creating problems of a magnitude we have never experienced in the history of civilisation. We have far greater and more complex issues with kids in their early teens sharing their own explicit imagery whilst many parents have no clue because it’s something they never had to face when they were growing up. Online pornography has become more extreme and there’s more violent content that’s so easily accessible, and kids have no way of differentiating what’s extreme and what isn’t. So I feel pessimistic about the future of relationships based on mutual respect and shared goals and values.

On the other hand, we’re seeing women becoming mobilised, initially through the Women’s March and now with MeToo, although I’m certain that we’ll see this settle down (for a while) whilst the system (whether that’s the entertainment industry, the political system, employment terms and conditions, of however you define it) will find ways to assimilate and neutralise current sentiments. Nevertheless, many, many women have been ignited to speak out against the injustices and abuses committed against then. Discussions have been sparked, ideas are flowing, the campaigns of previous generations of women have been rediscovered — and an entirely new generation of young women are saying “We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take this any more”. (Do you remember that movie? Good slogan, lol)

I guess what matters is our lives in the here and now. The only reason why pornography is ‘normal’ and ‘all men watch it’ is because a society, and more specifically a highly profitable industry with a powerful lobbying arm predominantly run by men have made it that way. Many men haven’t questioned the sex industry in all its guises, whether it’s massage parlours or lap dancing clubs or internet pornography, and fail to see it exists because of gender inequality. And far from being the bastions of female empowerment, these establishments not only take half of the money earned, they charge fees and impose fines so that women are already in debt to the owners before they work their shift. Not everyone will know how these establishments typically operate, and it was only through my own adversity that I realised I had to educate myself. I have educated myself about sex and porn addiction, but there was obviously other perspectives I had to listen to. Throughout this journey I’ve had to confront my own abuses as so much of what I read and heard resonated with my own experiences. When MeToo snowballed I realised I had many MeToo stories of my own, of sexual abuses with definite elements of sexual violence. When I see pornography I see women who have a blank expression of dissociation. I know they’re not present. I know I’m looking at an abuse which is only made legitimate by financial compensation and sold as ‘entertainment’. Just because so many men look at it, just st because it’s there and just because it’s free, it doesn’t make it OK. It’s no more “normal” than smoking was “normal” when most men did it.

In some ways my husband’ addiction has motivated me to define my values more clearly. Respect, mutuality, that sex is a way of honouring one’s partner, to communicate with honesty, to trust and be trustworthy, to act according to ones values and conscience. I’ve also learned to respect and value myself because in truth, I didn’t really think I deserved it. I’d got used to suppressing my own feelings and wants and needs. There’s so much about this partners workshop that has made me realise where the inner changes are needed. It’s like the old saying, the only person we can change is ourself.

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