Sexual liberation sacrificed the family

Maybe our annoying elders were right: sexual liberation, or the cutting loose of sex from family intentions, ruined the family. After all, you got the reward without the obligation, so why bother?

Like most revolutions, the sexual revolution was formed of popular notions that in opposition to common sense denied consequences and focused instead on the moment, the feeling and the social aspects of the act.

Those annoying elders have no idea, the revolutionaries said. People were always having sex; throughout history, 2/3 of brides were not virgins. With liberation, everything is fair, we’re all equal, and we can enjoy this glorious bodily function without strings attached.

Except that they don’t tell you a few things. First, saying 2/3 of brides were not virgins tells us little about the brides. As far as I can tell, 2/3 or more of people live in squalor, hate their families and litter compulsively while working entry-level jobs out of incompetence and laziness. These people cannot control their impulses, appetites and desires long enough to save up enough money to fix the roof; it’s not surprising they rut like hamsters.

In the course of not telling you a few things, they also performed a classic con: they paid off today at the expense of tomorrow. If life were so easy as “have whatever you want, right now,” we wouldn’t need evolution. Instead nature walks us through a series of steps in which we defer our desires in order to apply ourselves to finding solutions to what pains or ails us.

Tomorrow is the whole of your life. You will probably want a family because families are fun, and having kids is fun, and raising those kids in a stable place ensures that you will enjoy your kids and not have to watch them flounder in misery. Even more, it lets you move on to new challenges.

You don’t want to be trying to live the ideal college lifestyle for the rest of your life, or to pretend you’re 27 when you’re 37. You want an ever-evolving series of goals and challenges to get the full experience of life.

Sexual liberation however wants you to pretend that how you are right now is how you will be for the whole of your life, and to ignore the consequences of your actions now on the rest of your life. For example, any action you repeat inculcates you to expect more of the same; at some point, you get hard-wired for it. Even more, your first experience of anything is sacred and the more you adulterate that, the less you experience great intensity (or quality) and the more you experience repetition of diminishing intensity (or quantity).

Call it sexist, call it whatever you want—the evidence shows it’s true. In one frequently cited study, attractive young researchers separately approached opposite-sex strangers on Florida State University’s campus and proposed casual sex. Three-quarters of the men were game, but not one woman said yes. I know: Women love sex too. But research like this consistently demonstrates that men have a greater and far less discriminating appetite for it. As Baumeister and Vohs note, sex in consensual relationships therefore commences only when women decide it does.

And yet despite the fact that women are holding the sexual purse strings, they aren’t asking for much in return these days—the market “price” of sex is currently very low. There are several likely reasons for this. One is the spread of pornography: Since high-speed digital porn gives men additional sexual options—more supply for his elevated demand—it takes some measure of price control away from women. The Pill lowered the cost as well. There are also, quite simply, fewer social constraints on sexual relationships than there once were. As a result, the sexual decisions of young women look more like those of men than they once did, at least when women are in their twenties. The price of sex is low, in other words, in part because its costs to women are lower than they used to be. – Slate

The sexual economics of humanity favor two basic strategies: either you have many partners and spawn and invest little in each, or you are very selective and invest heavily in your choice. The latter is riskier but gives you the ability to find a more selective match and to more carefully manage your offspring’s education and maturation.

Of course, the second strategy also requires more overhead. You don’t raise a family without some kind of contract saying “we agree we’re in this to win it for as long as that takes,” and if you’re going to translate that into any kind of pleasant scenario, you probably want all the gooey goodness about true love too. These things are natural and sensible.

When we throw those out the window however, you get a society of empowered men and women who act differently.

To the men, the risk of long-term partnership grows because since the woman they may marry will have had many partners, she’s less likely to stick with one. That means a man faces a greater chance of being cheated upon, raising a child that is not biologically his, and then having to pay alimony after the inevitable split. Because of this risk, men are less likely to commit.

A woman faces less risk, but also less likelihood of success. She can get away with having multiple partners and then must convince one to settle down, but at that point, she’s not getting the good one — she’s getting the scratch and dent sale that is willing to tolerate the risk of infidelity or alienation because he doesn’t care all that much anyway. The woman is thus likely to pick up a dweeb and carry him around until she chucks him out, resulting in her spending most of her 20s and half of her 30s chasing men, then her 30s and half of her 40s in a loveless marriage, and then when menopause hits, she gets dumped to a future life of low-rent casual sex and loneliness.

What Hymowitz cannot understand (and because she’s an older conservative woman, is constitutionally incapable of understanding no matter how many times it is explained to her, no more than a cat could understand calculus) is that it is the condition of women, not men, that caused the great drop in fertility, the great increase in single-motherhood, and the great delay in marriage and adulthood by most men. Simply put, women for the first time ever, can widely choose sexy men instead of responsible ones. And they choose SEXY EVERY TIME just about. Leaving really, zero incentive for men to “man up” as she puts it. There are other factors at play, including a re-jiggering of the economy to put most jobs done by men by outsourced or H1-B visa holder cheaper replacements, the growth of female-dominated (and White male unfriendly) government, fashion, advertising, media, and corporate jobs. But the heart of the reason most White men in their twenties remain slackers is that women choose sexy men over responsible men. And only a very few men (usually less than 10% of the population) can be sexy. – Whiskey’s Place

This blogger has half the story. “Sexy” is a made-up word referring to people who are momentarily appealing. Past generations would have found this a baffling category. Sexy looks like casual sex, low commitment and probably flakiness. Why would you want that? Women fall for the media archetypes however, and go chasing the surly sweater model, the lanky-haired artist, the so-bad-he’s-good rocker, and so on.

When they’re done chasing and bedding these flakejobs, they go looking for a responsible man. All of those however are wise to the game and realize that women of unclear sexual past who suddenly want a good man are spent in that they have had so many lovers they are prejudiced against anything but casual sex. They’re sexual burnouts, and in the game of sexual politics, that makes them high-risk investments.

This is how sexual liberation kills the family. It pits the interests of men and women against each other. When men see the game is stacked in favor of them hooking up with a burnout, they simply choose not to play. When they get older and have enough income, they can simply buy their way to a cute young thing in breeding mode. They’re not going to deal with the sexual burnouts because those represent nothing but concealed losses.

If we were less selfish as a culture, we’d see that the right to sex right now is trumped by a plan that involves a lifetime of family, love and happiness. But those things are intangible, and almost too good to be true for your average drone, so they figure they’ll take the goods up front and ignore the future. If you don’t believe in happiness, you’ll take whatever you can get.

22 Comments

  1. I think – at root – you are arguing for a more long-termist view of happiness-seeking (or, seeking fulfillment rather than satisfaction).

    But, the problem is that this type of argument seems to have almost no traction on human behavior.

    In choosing the long term over the short term, one is choosing uncertainty, and taking the risk of ending-up with nothing.

    Another factor against long termism is alcohol. Women have a very strong evolved resistance to casual sex (as demonstrated by the Florida State U study you cite), and are naturally very choosy and careful about sex – but a drunk woman does not behave adaptively – and currently more women spend more of their time more drunk than for many decades.

    Having behaved foolishly, the large sisterhood of promiscious drunken women provide each other with numerous excuses and rationalizations – and have ended-up advocating short-termist stupidity as a lifetyle strategy. This is indeed the staple of chick lit and other genres catering for young women.

    My feeling is that the debate about how to maximise happiness will always drift towards short termism and selfishness, which represents the low risk strategy for life.

    The only groups of people who pursue a long-termist and dutiful but positive approach to sex are devoutly religious people such as (especially) Mormons – who are motivated in this by transcendental goals – i.e. they are seeking salvation (for themselves and others) rather than to maximize happiness.

    Also, discussions of sex need to be grounded in discussions of reproduction. When, as now, the two subjects are *completely* dissociated (e.g. the people who have the most sex generally have the fewest children), then society must be in deep trouble – as of course we are.

    1. The only groups of people who pursue a long-termist and dutiful but positive approach to sex are devoutly religious people such as (especially) Mormons – who are motivated in this by transcendental goals – i.e. they are seeking salvation (for themselves and others) rather than to maximize happiness.

      Having a transcendent goal is the best, yet to my mind, this seems an inevitable outcome of the quest for happiness. However, as you point out, that word (“happiness”) cannot be used glibly. When I speak of happiness in this context, I’m thinking of the old school meaning, which definitely implies transcendental appreciation, reverence for and joy in life. Few people seem to connect to that outside of religion and art, or in some cases, the intersection of the two (I’m thinking of Anton Bruckner and Robert Fripp mostly here). Maybe our cultural renovation must begin with a rediscovery of transcendent happiness?

    2. Hami says:

      You are preaching in favor of rape.

  2. Shayne says:

    My wife and I got married after 3 years of dating. She’d had one sexual partner before and I’d had none. This has been a positive thing for us, as I regard sexuality as something deeply intimate; not to be tossed around. She was even affianced to her previous partner, and this shows me that she is a person of firm commitment, discrimination and temperance — all important qualities in a wife and mother.

    It is common for modern folk to wag their sexual experience around in public as a badge of maturity. However, I see this as missing the point entirely. The metaphysical/transcendent relevancy of sexual intercourse is completely forgone: the weighty symbolism of “two-become-one” in the act itself, the loss of the sense of individuation in the happening of orgasm (especially when occuring simultaneously), the splendor of the combination of two identities in the birth of children, etc.

    Sex is a spiritual act to be respected and handled with consideration.

  3. crow says:

    If you don’t believe in happiness, you’ll take whatever you can get.

    Anything. Absolutely anything. Conflict seems to be the most appealing thing, in the absence of happiness. Observe any “debate”, about anything, and this becomes apparent.
    When did people abandon the Discussion, and start demanding Debate, where the only object is to destroy the opposition, by any means possible, and “win”?

    1. Hami says:

      EHHHH! (buzzer)
      To debate is to civilly discuss a disagreement, it is an entirely different word from both fighting and arguing. Fighting and arguing are also two different things.

  4. CherrysThorne says:

    “Sexual liberation however wants you to pretend that how you are right now is how you will be for the whole of your life, and to ignore the consequences of your actions now on the rest of your life.”

    That surely puts a whole lot of responsibility on physical acts as the creator of possible distortions on time yet to be. I would hope that casual sex from my past can not be blamed or have any power in the future to hold my present or future hostage. Do we not have some personal power over our today and future despite some trist of days gone by? Of course. I do support the intact family and monogamous relationship, but can not really think that sexual liberation can be the fulcrum of the decline of mankind…..I choose to think distorted thinking is more to fault. I agree, we are a lot of spoiled humans that gobble our future generations natural resources. I agree, too many breed irresponsibly. I know that we need balance and proper self control. Honestly though, I am just being honest here, some people really are not sexually compatible and I would hate to think I would be locked into a marriage with some man only to find out much to late that I did not like being intimate with him. :)

    1. Hami says:

      The flaw with your excuse to have sex with men before commitment is that you can tell whether or not you have chemistry without having sex.

      You’re trying to avoid that your past actions were a mistake, and even threw in that pro-sex without commitment nugget. That means you plan on returning to that behavior in the future. You haven’t actually moved past that behavior.

      1. CherrysThorne says:

        I admit it fully. I think Brett makes the most intelligent case I have ever read regarding why having casual sex is bad for long term health of our culture. I also admit that I remain open regarding sex prior to marriage.( I am not perfect yet).. I was part of this revolution that made sex more like shopping for eggs than for long term happiness and commitment. I agree we have been exposed as the free for all experimental failures. Thankfully, those that see things more clearly can calculate the costs and point and nudge the culture in the proper direction: apply the correction.

        1. Thankfully, those that see things more clearly can calculate the costs and point and nudge the culture in the proper direction: apply the correction.

          I think that would make the best world for women and men, and especially, children.

  5. Demonspawn says:

    “Sex and Culture” by J.D. Unwin, published in the UK in 1934.

    You’ve basically just discussed the premise of that book, which demonstrated that women’s sexual liberation destroyed several cultures over the course of history.

    This is not the first time in history we’ve had Feminism. I, unfortunately, doubt it will be the last.

  6. Hami says:

    The “Sexual Liberation” movement should factually be called the “Pro-Rape” movement. The only people who benefit from these movements and trends are rapists.

    And, rapists don’t do it for fun or sex itself. They can get that in a committed relationship. Rapists are after: children, fame, fortune, status, slaves, public image, etc. They are not after one night stands. The one night stand is a trap. It so happens that sex is a great way to confuse someone about how they feel about you. It’s also a great way to make you feel ashamed, and drop your self-esteem. And, they can easily not employ, or sabotage birth control efforts to knock you up/get knocked up by you, and they WILL do this if they want a baby. If they wanted a baby… They run away with it, despite that it’s your kid, too. If they wanted something that requires you to commit, they use the baby to trap you. Rapists are not after one night stands. No one is.

    1. Repair_Man_Jack says:

      I respectfully disagree. Saying that rapists benefit from having an easier time raping people is a little like saying alcoholics benefit from a politician handing out bottles of Wild Irish Rose for votes. The rapist is a man destroying himself through his actions. People who want kids, money, fame etc.. to give off an external image are riding for a crash.

      I cite the amusing plight of John Edwards as an example.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/01/us/01edwards.html?_r=1&ref=us

  7. Baldur says:

    This debate within these comments here as well as this article suggests that women should be (i.e. are expected to be) morally superior to men. If they fail to behave perfectly or in a superior way, then they are a degraded “whore”. Men are expected to be “dogs in heat,” so when they poke any hole in the ground it is viewed as “men being manly men”. Both ideas are signs of societal disease. Neither sex can be wholly blamed as the fall guy for a society.

    What this debate also suggests is that we men are wired for mating with any hole in the ground or animal in the barnyard, but women are not. These expectations are causing dissonance and confusion as well as intersex hatred and resentment.

    My point? The problem transcends blaming the sexes. Start looking at brainwashing techniques and the power of sexual conditioning. I would recommend the seven part Kinsey Syndrome expose on YouTube. Summing that up: white men have been systematically conditioned to hate women, but to lust after their flesh. Further, they have been carefully conditioned to lust after the bodies of pre-pubescent girls and the immature bodily traits (e.g. hairless genitals) of little girls, not women. Our Jewish-dominated media also teaches us that fake is beautiful — fake vaginas and fake breasts are “true beauty”. This is causing huge psych issues with white women. Probe long enough and they will divulge this truth. They bury it and pretend it doesn’t affect them. They are lying. It destroys them (e.g. Barbie dolls). When Freud said he was bringing white man the plague he wasn’t joking.

    Start looking closer at things. For starters, the little Coppertone girl with a dog tearing at her panties. Yep, we’ve been had by a much bigger ‘evil’ than Leftist feminism. That is merely a sympton of our disease.

    1. Demonspawn says:

      >What this debate also suggests is that we men are wired for mating with any hole in the ground or animal in the barnyard, but women are not. These expectations are causing dissonance and confusion as well as intersex hatred and resentment.

      You think men and women have the same sexual drives? Honestly?

      Pick up a DSM and look up the criteria for physical addiction. Then research the male genitalia structures. Thanks to biology and evolution, post-pubescent males fit the criteria of being physically addicted to sex.

      May not be the best for society, but it’s what worked for the survival of the species. So, no, we don’t expect women to be morally superior to men, but we do expect them to accept their role of being the tamers of men.

      1. Baldur says:

        So I guess we whites are supposed to “tame” nonwhites huh (per white racial sceintists)? Asinine to say the least. Nothing is inherently addicted to anything. Ever heard of self-control? Feminism is the result of a lack of that trait.

        1. Demonspawn says:

          >So I guess we whites are supposed to “tame” nonwhites huh (per white racial sceintists)?

          I dono. Are nonwhites addicted to interaction with whites, with whites being the controller of said interaction, in such a way that whites standards for doling out said interactions can greatly influence nonwhite behavior?

          >Nothing is inherently addicted to anything.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epididymis
          The male sexual drive functions very much like taking a piss. What happens when you don’t piss? It becomes all you can think about. If you hold it too long? It causes problems (thankfully men will experience nocturnal emissions to release the pressure).

          Those and other factors fit the clinical definition of physical addiction.

          >Ever heard of self-control?

          Tell you what…

          You go build a society based on men who “should” have self control. I’ll build mine based on dealing with men as they are (the vast majority making very Foustian deals for sex). We’ll see which lasts in the long run.

          You control the men in society by controlling the women.
          You control the women in society by.. well the only seemingly successful method is (organized?) religion.

          Yeah, take a look at my username and guess how pissed off I was when I figured that one out.

          1. Shayne says:

            I’m addicted to pissing. Just can’t stop doing it.

          2. Baldur says:

            Wikipedia? lol

            Well Demonspawn, maybe you have no self-control. You derserve militant feminism.

    2. Repair_Man_Jack says:

      No, at the end of the day, a man has to carry more responsibility. A man doesn’t get impregnated. To be gross about this, nobody can determine whether I’m a virgin using their ring finger. We don’t live with as many consequences, as rapidly from unrestrained intercourse. Therefore, a real man has to have a genuine moral imagination.

  8. [...] women both are guilty of this: I’ve played around for so long, what’s the point? As Brett has pointed out, this is why cougars are a modern [...]

  9. John D says:

    In my experience, there is a small few on one side who view sexuality as sacred and something that must be reserved for marriage (which if I am not mistaken, is the side that this blog takes). On the other side is a whole lot of men and women who partake in casual sex, have one night stands, and so forth.

    I think that there is a more sensible middle way; in which both males and females may have multiple sexual partners (boyfriends/girlfriends) before their marriage, but they still treat sex as something they only do with someone for whom they deeply care. Then, when one eventually finds the person with whom he/she will remain (or get married to), they aren’t stuck without relationship/sexual experience.

    I also think that the deciding factor in whether a relationship or marriage will succeed is not necessarily that one or both members have had sexual partners in the past, but the personality of both partners and how they communicate.

    This is not to say that the “hookup culture” isn’t harmful, I find that it generally is harmful, and certainly doesn’t result in any lasting happiness.

    Countries in Northern Europe have a much more liberal attitude toward sex than we do in the U.S. (and I believe the Netherlands has even been like this for hundreds of years), and I would compare this to more conservative attitudes in several Middle Eastern states in which women experience a great deal of social oppression (in comparison to modern democracies). I find the former example to be much more desirable.

    It’s not the goal that can be altered; it’s how you get there.

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