I don’t know if it’s a sexologist thing or just something I get hung up on, but I have become one of those people who analyse the language we use. I believe that we can change the way we and others view certain topics by changing the language we use surrounding them. When it comes to sex, there are many words that can be seen as not sex positive or even confusing. Let’s even take the word sex for example. We use it a lot, but it’s a word we can’t even define. What is sex? Is it penis in a vagina or is it fingers in a vagina or a penis in an anus? There are multiple different meanings for one word, and universally we cannot even agree on what it is.
Here are a few others that I feel could be describing the act negatively or even posing a problem when it comes to defining them.
This is a relatively new one to my list. Most commonly it’s a term used to describe a genre of porn, couples friendly porn. But what does it mean? In the porn world, it normally means the type of sex show is more gentle and soft and there is intimacy as opposed to hard core acts. But as one famous porn star pointed out to me, why can’t couples be kinky too? I believe it to be a problem in society with the way we view the sex lives or those in marriages or relationships. It’s all about love, intimacy and connection which is an important thing for a relationship, but why can’t couples have sexual fun and exploration as well? So, when we use the term what are we really saying? That couples should only be having straight forward missionary sex?
Speaking of kinky, and I know I’ve just used the term above, but what does it even mean? It’s one of those terms that I still use but at the same time I have a problem with it. The problem is in how to define it? Often the way to describe kinky is doing something different in the bedroom. So, one person’s kink is another personal usual bedroom routine? Once again it’s a term with a changing definition. We also need to consider the porn influenced era we are living in. What was once considered kinky is now considered an everyday act for some.
It’s one of the first sexual concepts we talk about, losing virginity. But it’s these first words that set us up for negative views about sex. Many think for a woman, when they first have sex they lose their hymen. But that’s not always the case. A woman can break her hymen in all sorts of ways. So what is it exactly she is losing? And what do men lose? Some see first sexual encounters as a loss on innocence. We seem to see anything sexual at an early age a loss of innocence, sexual content, language or even information. But what is the opposite to innocent? Guilty. Should anyone feel guilty for having consensual and safe sex? Why should we associate a loss with a first sexual encounter or even a negative word at all? Maybe it’s time we re renamed it a first sexual encounter, no matter how you define what that act is.
It’s a word so many of us use these days. And I know there is a movement to reclaim it as a positive, but the issue is it’s still a word used to degrade women. Any word to degrade a woman’s sexuality is not on by me. Because why is it we have so many to degrade women but not really the equivalent for men? Is it because we don’t see male sexuality in the same way? These words are used to control women with fear but we don’t see the same with men because as a society we have never really tried to control their sexuality. And the million-dollar question for those who still use the word slut is, how many people do you actually have to have sex with?
This is another one of those words with no meaning. It’s used with all genders but once again, how many people to do you have to have sex with to deserve being described with these terms? And is it just sex or is it other sexual acts? I really think we need to reconsider using these words and say it as it is. I’ll never forget when I was studying to be a sexologist, how someone once described it to me. Someone who is promiscuous is someone who is having more sex than you.