all 28 comments

[–]jkfinn 10 insightful - 1 fun10 insightful - 0 fun11 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

It's not the seeing, it's the unilateral seeing. He eroticizes you and then he looks at you. His seeing has little to do with you, but more to do with what he’s done to you... that is, made you sexual... made you a sex object. So, seeing as a form of possession is what's wrong, not seeing. And most women don't see in this way because they either don't wish to, or do not possesses the power to, except (more rarely) with other women.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Interesting perspective! Thanks!!

[–]MarkTwainiac 8 insightful - 1 fun8 insightful - 0 fun9 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I believe there are many differences between male and female sexuality, but I think the idea that males and male sexuality are inherently visual and females and female sexuality are not is a sexist stereotype that has little basis in fact.

But then, I don't define being visual in the narrow way that equates it with getting turned on by the types of pornography commonplace in today's internet era. Photography, film, video and other means of making, replicating and spreading pictures en masse are all pretty recent developments. Until well into the 19th century, there weren't even illustrations in most books or newspapers; illustrated periodicals like Harper's Illustrated Weekly were a very big deal when they were introduced.

Although humans have been making pictures since the time of cave drawings, the fact is that most of the people to have walked the earth over the long course of our species history did not see pictures of any kind on a daily or regular basis because there were no technologies that allowed pictures to be copied easily and distributed on a mass scale. Yet somehow through all those thousands of years, people somehow managed to have a lot of sex. Funny that.

The plethora of pictorial imagery we take for granted today is very much a late-modern phenomenon. As are the conditions and inventions that make it possible for people to spend a lot of time looking/staring at still and moving pictures of any sort - such as electric lighting, leisure time, differentiated rooms in houses, and privacy.

[–]anxietyaccount8 6 insightful - 2 fun6 insightful - 1 fun7 insightful - 2 fun -  (1 child)

I am also a straight woman. I hate porn (obviously, or else I wouldn't be here lol) but mainly because I think it degrades women and is unerotic/formulaic. The fact that it's a video rather than a story doesn't matter. It's definitely possible for women to be aroused just from seeing something. Generally, I think it is true that men are more visual, but the reason for the huge disparity is probably because there are more visuals intended for them.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

That's something i thought about too, the lack of visual content catered for women. I really do wonder though if there's credible biological differences on this aspect!

[–]snub-nosedmonkey 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (9 children)

This is actually something I was looking into today! Anecdotally, I find that men are distinctly more visual when it comes to sex and sexual arousal. However, the science seems less clear and contradictory. I might come to a clearer conclusion if I read into it more but this is what I found out so far:

Generally, studies support the idea that men respond more to sexual visual stimuli than women [1]. Also, the type of visual stimuli that men and women respond to seems to be different. For example, a 2013 study found that men tended to be more stimulated by “physical type, directly exposing sexual intercourse and genitalia” whereas women were more stimulated by “mood type, erotic video clips with a concrete story”[2].

However, a more recent 2019 review contradicts the first review I referenced and came to the conclusion that “neuronal response to visual sexual stimuli, contrary to the widely accepted view, is independent of biological sex.” [3]

[1] [2] [3]

As a side-note, I do wonder suspect such brain imaging studies are limited in terms of answering the question of whether men are more visually oriented when it comes to sex.

[–]sisterinsomnia 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (4 children)

That is very good! I have always been semi-interested in these questions. I once read an article which spoke about the reactions of teenage girls to the arrival of the Beatles in the US in the 1960s and the reactions they had to large posters of the group. Can't remember exactly how it was framed, but the article stated that the most common reaction the girls showed was a sexual one. And then I thought that if this was true, the reaction was to a visual stimulus.

The usual problem applies to studying something like this, which is trying to find out how much of the difference is created by the culture and how much might be there in all circumstances. Most visual cues to sexism even out in placards and so on are aimed at heterosexual men. That makes us equate sexual arousal cues with something that is not meant for us, to begin with.

Porn, for instance, is a bad case study because it is overwhelmingly created for heterosexual men. So it is not just visual, but visual+for-men. Maybe Lesbian porn would be closer to something more neutral in the setup?

[–]MarkTwainiac 7 insightful - 3 fun7 insightful - 2 fun8 insightful - 3 fun -  (3 children)

Yes, the reaction of us female Beatles fans back in the day definitely was sexual. I was a prepubescent kid at their famous Shea Stadium concert, and can attest that tens of thousands of teen girls and young women spent the entire time screaming in a collective frenzy that was quite sexual and pretty orgiastic.

But the response to the Beatles wasn't just to their looks, or mainly about their looks because they weren't models or just pretty boys with mop tops - the Beatles were brilliant, ground-breaking musicians, singers and songwriters as well as intelligent men with witty and endearing personalities. The response to the Beatles was a response to them in their totality, and to the revolutionary new sound they introduced, not just to their looks as shown in pics and photos.

[–]ImPiqued1111111 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

I was a prepubescent kid at their famous Shea Stadium concert

Off topic, but I am sooooooo jealous! My understanding is that you could hardly hear anything, but still.

[–]MarkTwainiac 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

ImPiqued: The screaming from the audience came through loud and clear, but virtually nothing could be heard from the four young men on the field who were trying to pipe their music through tiny and tinny speakers.

The whole scene was hilarious and absurd. To his dying day, my father often humorously remarked that writing out a check to secure those Shea Stadium Beatles tickets in 1965 might not have been in his best interests because that concert seemed to unleash forces that caused all his daughters and other girls in the nabe and his workplace to become bra burners and ball busters!

[–]ImPiqued1111111 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Oh yep, that's what I meant, the band couldn't be heard because the screaming drowned them out!

To his dying day, my father often humorously remarked that writing out a check to secure those Shea Stadium Beatles tickets in 1965 might not have been in his best interests because that concert seemed to unleash forces that caused all his daughters and other girls in the nabe and his workplace to become bra burners and ball busters!


[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (3 children)

Thanks for the detailed insight! I guess we're still having to rely on personal or external experiences only for the moment as we don't have concrete answers. We surely know that women are not the psychological prudes they're painting us to be. So frustrating! I really believe that the escalation of explicit content encourages men to believe this spiel of "men are visual", nowadays there's very little appreciation for mystery and eroticism. A teacher i have explained that eroticism is so much more powerful than pornography, because porn completely vulgarizes and objectifies, the other keeps you guessing and wanting to know and discover more. I guess women are much more appreciative of eroticism maybe.

[–]Realwoman 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Just because men are more visual, doesn't mean that they get a get out of jail free card when it comes to objectifying women or being sexually immature.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

Maybe you responded to the wrong comment?

[–]Realwoman 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I was just expanding on what you said, not arguing with it

[–]oofreesouloo 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

THAT'S STEREOTYPES!!! And harmful stereotype for women, who are perceived to be all "very fluid" and all "a little bit bi" or "sexless psychological beings". I'm a lesbian and very sexual lmao. I do think men tend to have higher sex drives generally, but to say women are "psychological"? LMAO!!!

[–]Realwoman 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Men's and women's sexualities are quite different and this is one of the few places where genuine sex differences exist and are significant. When it is said that men are more visual, it doesn't mean that women are not attracted to a man's looks - it means that men receive a much bigger sexual stimulation just by looking at someone they're attracted to. My husband can get turned on just by seeing me wear lingerie, he's ready to go, I need way more than that. Men are more likely to objectify certain body parts. This is true for both straight and gay men. I cannot relate to the way gay men describe their attraction to men in any way. And it's not that looks don't matter to me - they do, a great deal. I've only ever fallen in love with tall men with handsome faces.

Men are also a more likely to have paraphilias and fetishes and those are very hard to change. Men have a higher sex drive on average (established throughout different cultures and countries) and they desire more sexual partners than women. Many of the more recent reports of "low libido" men that refuse to have sex with their wives, are not about men with a low libido. Those men are usually addicted to porn and they want sex, they just want sex with others, not their wife.

Men also find it much easier to separate sex and love. That's why most sex buyers are men. Men can have zero respect for a woman and still be turned on by her and sleep with her. They can hate her even, and still have sex. That's why women seeking validation through casual sex end up feeling used.

[–]Gynephile 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (7 children)

You think people shame women for being attracted to the male body? Lol straight women are a crazy bunch. Most women think the male body is beautiful and don't like the female body at all, maybe you should spend less time talking to straight men that's all I'm saying.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (6 children)

I never said this. I said that the male body is seen as something a lot less sexual than the female body, otherwise we'd see it a lot more in ads and stuff. The naked or sexy female body is expected nowadays. And despite this, female sexuality IS shamed and ridiculed. I do remember that in a final fantasy videogame, men petitioned to cover up a male character with a skimpy outfit because "it was gay". This is the kind of issues I'm talking about. And no, i have friends of every sexuality and sex.

Why do you think people defend pornography so much while shaming and ridiculing what women consume and the way they are?

[–]Gynephile 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (5 children)

Lol you're still talking about straight men though. Most women are not interested in video games, while straight men are the primary consumers of them. They think it's gay to even admit a man may be attractive, so why would they want to see a male character in a skimpy outfit?

And I also don't see a big difference between pornography and the erotica that women consume. Women overwhelmingly supported the Fifty shades of grey series and that 365 day movie. Maybe those people (men) who shame women for what they consume are just pointing out the hypocrisy. Men want to be violent with women and women want men to be domineering and violent with them (as long as they're handsome). Stop acting like women's desires are innocent and above criticism.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (3 children)

Men want to be violent with women and women want men to be domineering and violent with them (as long as they're handsome)

Ok that's enough conversation cause you really do sound like an incel here.

[–]Gynephile 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Lol I'm not an incel, I don't really care what straight or bi women do. I am just observing what I have seen, erotica featuring violent and handsome men is very popular among women, call me what you want but it will not change that fact.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

You don't seem to understand that reality and fantasy are very different things. Erotica doesn't reflect what a woman truly wants in her life. You can't say women want this and that for sure because they read it in books or fanfiction.

[–]Gynephile 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I've seen it with my own eyes, violent men are never without a woman by their side. People believe that pornography encourages men to perpetrate sexual violence against women (which is true) but women wanting violence enacted on them isn't influenced by porn and erotica? I find that very hard to believe in, I see women on social media every day talking about how they want men to choke and slap them and do much worse.

[–]Irascible-harpy 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Most women are not interested in video games -- Source? Women are major consumers of video games, they just tend to be drawn toward different genres.

[–][deleted] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I think pornography is aimed at attracting and addicting men. It exacerbates their worst features in terms of sexuality.

[–]Mencantbewomen[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Yeah, this is not something aimed directly at women imo too.

[–]stitchedlamb 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I think this nonsense has been going on as long as advertisements became a dominant force in the world. If you look up vintage advertisements, you'll see the majority tend to be made up of images of women. Even today, while women make up a larger percentage of the marketing workforce, men outnumber them in the CEO/senior roles. I highly doubt there are many dudes out there that feel the need to push a "men are attractive" narrative because they don't need to be attractive, they have all the power.

Anyway, just because things like "Playgirl" failed don't mean we aren't turned on by sight; there are a multitude of reasons women don't consume (visual) porn as much as men. I think things like the popularity of boy bands and books like 50 Shades (gag) prove that women love sex and sexy men, I don't know why people think that isn't true. Supernatural didn't go on for 10 millions seasons because the writing is fantastic, let's be real, everyone wanted to see pretty boys cry while taking showers or whatever.