Wait, You're Too Tired?

Illustration for article titled Wait, You're Too Tired?

In today's story of someone that is blind to what seems obvious to us, we present the case of Linda Bodner of England, who convinced herself that it was her body (and/or her vagina) that made her husband less interested than her in sex. New tits, a flat stomach, a pimped-out vadge and about $15,500 US later, she finally realized that her husband was just not as interested in sex as she was, period. But the real question is why people are still buying into the stereotype that men want sex all the time and women are inherently less sexual.


Because, let's face it, (most) women like sex just as much as men — and some of us like it more. In an informal poll of Jezebellers who aren't in Australia, 2 of us consistently date men with lower sex drives, 3 have done so, and 1 says she's just always really well matched (and the 2 of us with high sex drives are very, very jealous of her). So, I'm going to call Linda's problem not at all uncommon. Some men have lower sex drives, some higher — just like women — and she ended up married to a dude with a relatively low one and spent a lot of time and energy blaming herself and getting sliced up to "fix" a problem that was more about compatibility (and communication) than her looks.

The first time a boyfriend called me a nympho was in college — and, at 21, it's a little hard not to be concerned that maybe there is something wrong with you. There is, however, a world of difference between a healthy high sex drive and the medical definition of nymphomania: "A disorder in which a woman exhibits extreme or obsessive desire for sexual stimulation or gratification." To make matters somewhat worse, as I've gotten older (and off the Pill), I'm actually consistently more interested in sex than nearly anyone I'm dating. Is that normal? It feels normal to me, and I am more than capable of having long-term, committed, monogamous relationships despite the consistent disparity in the level of interest in having sex- which makes me not an actual nympho. I finally learned to recognize, though, that I'm more the "guy" in the relationship in this sense (if we're going to stereotype gender roles) and I have learned to some degree to not take it as a personal affront to my attractiveness/desirability.

But, that's a hard thing, I know. My mom (like, I assume, many parents) told me that boys were only ever after and always interested in one thing, so I understand how it can hit at the core of a woman's self-esteem. Like Linda, if you start from the assumption that men always want sex, and then your partner doesn't want sex with you when you want sex, it can easily follow in your own head that the problem must lie in your own desirability. But it's both more accurate and far less draining to recognize that individuals have individual sex drives, regardless of gender, and that no vaginal rejuvination surgery is going to change someone's libido, though open and honest communication about the differences might make everyone a lot happier in the long run.

My New Body Ruined My Marriage [The Mirror]


Barry Petchesky

I would venture to say that it's tougher on guys, because we actually have to do work for sex to happen. (OK, I know that's not strictly true, but bad pizza/bad sex=serviceable, &c, &c.)