Love / Sex & Love

Luna Luna Love & Lust: Smut-Shaming, Kinkifying Your Fuck Buddy, and a Fetish for Feminine Underwear

Your resident sexpert. Image by Jayel Draco

Your resident sexpert. Image by Jayel Draco

Welcome, my darlings, to my first-ever monthly Luna Luna Love and Lust sexpert column! In the first of this month’s two-part column, I’m tackling the issue of contempt for porn in seemingly confident women, getting kinky with a fuck buddy, and, of course, feeling ok with a fetish for women’s panties. Read up, and then send me your own burning questions! (Except, if it’s really burning, honey, go to a doctor. Frealz.)

Conundrum: Confident Women Who Smut-Shame

I’m curious about how you all feel about porn– specifically, boyfriends (girlfriends, husbands, wives significant others, etc) watching porn. I feel like all people who are sex positive, curious, and enjoy sex in general are interested in whatever their form of porn might be– but it seems like so many women (even women who look at porn on their own time) get upset about the thought of their boyfriend doing the same. Even if they don’t see t as a logical threat– there is a sense of upset, of being unsettled, even angry or sad. Why is this? What do you think? Is t unacceptable for men who are in monogamus relationships to watch porn? And if the answer is no, then why are so many confident women upset about the notion of that?

—Anonymous

Dear Anonymous—

Whoooooo, this is one hell of a question. I could write pages upon pages. But I’m trying to be a good advice columnist and not get too carried away. So once again, let’s try some bullets, shall we? Oh, lovely, organization-forcing bullets!

  • Let’s take a step back from why so-called confident women have this response. I don’t want to take away from their confidence, but I am gonna go big-picture and point to the culture we’re raised in and how it affects our perceptions of ourselves as women, our partners, and what a monogamous relationship entails. (Let’s assume the question asker, like the question answer-er, is likely an American or other Western-industrialized-nation-dweller living by mostly-American standards—I don’t think this question came from, say, Brazil or Italy.)
  • The expectation of lifelong monogamy that we’re raised with builds up the idea in our brains that we are supposed to be the be-all, end-all object of sexual desire for the person we’re with. We may not go through life with just one partner anymore, but the expectation is still built in that you have to be The Perfect Woman for your partner. Anything that suggests that your preferred person may be able to get sexual gratification from someone who is not you breaks the very fragile casing of that idea. (I won’t go into the arguments for and against it here.)
  • The very deeply felt, if rarely explicitly stated, idea that we (women) are only as good as our looks makes us incredibly vulnerable to the threats of other women’s beauty. I’ve heard so many people say that they hate it when their partners watch porn because then they feel like they’ll be expected to look/act like that, and they’ll never look/act like that. It’s an impossible ideal. But I’ve also heard so many people say that watching porn is not about finding what they want elsewhere; they wouldn’t want their partners to look/act like people in porn—it’s just that they like porn and that’s what the people in it look/act like. But to someone who’s constantly bombarded by media telling us we’re supposed to be thinner, bustier, leggier, tanner, with better hair and skin and nails and everything else, it can feel like a slap in the face to think that someone who has all those better things is getting our partner’s attention. We may be confident, but we’re not immune to culturally-reinforced self-esteem issues. Porn can bring them to the forefront.
  • On the flip side of the coin, think of the ways that we’re raised to think about men: that they’re obsessed with sex, that all they want out of women is sex, and so on. We tend not to think so basely of the men that we enter into serious relationships with, but the residue of every sitcom ever is still in our brains. So maybe, when we find out that a guy we’re in a relationship is watching porn, we see it not only as a threat ourselves as his one and only source of sex, but also as a sign that he’s forgetting the “better” side that we see of him and reverting to his “masculine” ways, which feels like a whole other level of disappointment and betrayal.
  • The other thing about our monogamous culture is that—and we’ve all seen this over and over again in movies and books—while we’re basically taught to be sensible adults with most of our emotions, the one place we’re allowed to behave like assholes is in the realm of romantic/sexual jealousy. Sex, given that it’s taboo, is like the ultimate Thing You Can Be a Dick about, as long as you’re being a dick on behalf of the established rules of approved monogamous relationships. Why is this? How does this area get such privilege? Is it because we put a huge morality clause on sex after thousands of years of Christian influence telling us it’s bad unless it’s done in proscribed ways with the right people? Maybe. Is it really fair to let it have such a hold on us? Maybe not. Yes, these emotions—jealousy, suspicion, anger, and the like—are powerful. But they don’t need to rule us, and I think sometimes in these areas they’re allowed to.
  • Again, often owing to the taboo nature of sex, I think it’s easy to have emotional responses that flare up in response to sex that don’t get vetted, or even examined in a rational enough way to be understood. This can lead to a lot of deeper-rooted issues (body-image problems, sexual identity confusion or denial, anxiety issues, specters of infidelity-related parental fights, moral panic, etc.) sort of grabbing on porn as a catch-all for negative emotions relating to sex. Reactions to porn don’t always have much to do with porn. It’s got a lot of connections to a lot of other stuff in our brains. Do with that idea what you will, but I think it could use a lot of looking into from a lot of us. It’s not often porn that’s the real issue, it’s our own issues being reflected in or brought up by the porn.
  • Plus, we’ve all heard tales of “porn addicts.” We’ve all heard that porn is so easy to get these days that it can warp our brains and make us into sexual deviants or something. We’ve all read articles by men who claim that porn ruined their lives and relationships and careers and families. And all that. I’ve got a whole lot I could say about “porn addiction,” but what it really comes down to is whether you’re dating a person who feels comfortable enough being honest with you to have legitimate conversations about their behavior when it comes to porn for you both to be ok. It’s all about communication. If someone is using porn as a replacement or crutch for emotional and sexual intimacy, that’s not healthy and there’s every reason for both of you to take it as a serious problem. But if there’s a bone (hah!) of contention about normal, non-obsessive intake of sexual entertainment, it’s up to the people involved to talk about it and figure out how to make themselves ok.

In the end, everyone has their own reasons for liking or not liking porn, or for being ok or not ok with a romantic partner using it. But the real key, as in so many other situations, is communication. Knowing that your partner is looking at porn can be unsettling for so many reasons, and none of the feelings that it evokes are made less real because they’re irrational. But often the person who’s upset by the use of porn in a monogamous relationship gets to take the moral high ground over the porn user because that’s socially acceptable: porn is bad, so the person who doesn’t like it gets to make the porn user feel terrible about it. But the truth is, if someone wants to use porn in a responsible way, that person will be hurt if they feel they can no longer do so. And the other truth is that the person who feels cheated on will be hurt if the other partner keeps using it. Neither hurt is inherently better than the other—they both come from places of real emotional reactions and desires and insecurities. The only way to mitigate them is to be honest about your feelings and try not to let your programming or our feelings get the better of you. It might never get comfortable to talk about it, but the more you light you shine into any corner, the less scary that corner gets.

Single and Saucy

I recently became single after being cheated on by my boyfriend of 2.5 years- he cheated on me with a guy. Now I’m back to my rebound guy, who is pretty much useless except for sex but I am currently enjoying my single life too much to pursue anything more. I want to explore and do some crazy sexy things I’ve always wanted to do, like tie him to a bed and fuck him in a bar. How can I bring this up without making him think I’m crazy?

—Aimee

Dear Aimee,

Well, good thing he got that out of his system, huh? I guess? Man. That sucks. I’m sorry.

But anyway, congrats on enjoying the single life! I wish you many fine fucks. And, darling, I’m gonna recommend the following course of action: DO NOT WORRY about making him think you’re crazy. The way I see it, there are two possible reactions he could have to you telling him you want to tie him up or have (please dear god let it be sanitary and safe and mostly-legal) sex in the bathroom or try a threesome or whatever else you want to do:

1) He will think you are crazy and stop talking to you. But, given that you’ve already said he’s useless except for sex, and that you are obviously a confident and badass young woman, that doesn’t seem like much of a risk, does it? If you’re into the single life, there are bound to be plenty of more-adventurous and open-minded fish in the sea who are eager to swim with you, and who really want to do the public-sex thing.

2) I think this is the vastly more likely option. I don’t think I know anybody in a rebound hookup relationship who would not be down to try at least a few wild ideas. Start out on the tamer side—maybe some fuzzy handcuffs or some clothed petting on bar stools—to be sure he can handle the idea first, but my guess is that he’s way more down to get kinky than you’re thinking he is. And, hey, if he’s just your rebound guy, then the sex should at least be as much fun as you want it to be!

So go for it! You’ve got nothing to lose and all the amazing sex in the world to gain! Just tell him you want to get a little kinky and be sure that you give him permission to say no (or another safe word) at any point. Keep it safe and respectful, and have fun!

An Urge for Undies

Hopefully you can help! I basically have the urge for women’s underwear, I don’t know how to stop?

—Anonymous

Hi Anonymous—

I’m not sure exactly what you mean, so I’ll try to cover all the bases.

If you mean that you have the urge to wear women’s underwear instead of men’s, and you are a man… Well, as far as I can tell, you wearing some string bikini bottoms under your khakis to the office hurts exactly nobody. So, if you prefer satin thongs to cotton boxers, why wear the boxers?

True story: I once dated a guy who loved the feeling of stockings under his jeans. He often wore tights or fishnets under his pants—at home, at work, out in public… wherever. Nobody knew unless he told them, and he got to enjoy his preferred undergarments with no repercussions whatsoever. This guy is straight. He’s engaged to be married (to someone else) next year. Point being: preferring non-gender-conforming under-things doesn’t have any bearing on your orientation or gender identity. Sometimes it is a sign that something else needs to be addressed, but lots of times it’s just that someone of the more masculine variety prefers softer fabric on his soft, dangly, fleshy bits. Who could blame him?

Obviously not everyone is as lax as I am about the idea of a guy in lady’s panties, so if there are people you don’t want to know about your undies preference, just keep them out of the loop. In a public bathroom, use the stall. If you think you might be getting intimate (or otherwise de-pantsed) with someone who you don’t care to share the info with, wear briefs instead, just for the day. That way you still get the tight fit without the femininity. Or you can always go the silk- or satin-boxer route for the smoothness.

But basically… just enjoy yourself! Panty shopping—in a store or online—is so much fun! Indulge!

If, however, you mean that you have the urge to wear women’s underwear that actually belong to a woman, then that’s theft and that’s not cool. In which case—go panty shopping for yourself!

If you are interested in sniffing/touching/otherwise receiving stimulation from women’s panties of the used variety… Again, why stop? As long as you’re not stealing, or using otherwise illegal or hurtful means to get them, then sniff/pet/etc. away! There are places online where you can buy used panties, and I can’t see any reason why this should be where we draw the line on capitalism, do you? Of course, this kind of interest is rather on the fringe of sexual proclivities, so it would be perhaps useful to keep your collection contained to a drawer/trunk/box when it’s not in use.

Whatever the case may be, I can’t offer you any reason to stop what you’re doing (or even the urge, if that’s all that’s happened so far), as long as nobody is being hurt in the process. There are plenty of places online to find information and support for people who share your urge, and even some companies specifically making lingerie for men, so have a blast!

 ———————

Got questions? Send ’em!

———————–

Lynsey G is a writer, reviewer, interviewer, columnist and blogger writing for and about sex, feminism, and porn since 2007. Formerly a smut scribe for Fox, Juggs, and Tight magazines, she’s also written for xoJane, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Corset Magazine, TOSKA, MadisonBound, and WHACK! Magazine. She’s still on a high after winning a 2013 Feminist Porn Award for her short film, “Consent: Society,” and is now at work blogging at her own website, working on a few books of various types, and whoring it up with the New York City Poetry Brothel.

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One thought on “Luna Luna Love & Lust: Smut-Shaming, Kinkifying Your Fuck Buddy, and a Fetish for Feminine Underwear

  1. Legitimacy that not every woman can’t handle a “Friends w/Benefits” or “FB” relationship.. If ya want reality of “it is what it is” then this is for you.

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