It strikes me that both men and women share a tendency to blame the other gender for their own base impulses or thwarted desires. One thing that women don't generally do, however, is feel "entitled" to the sexual services of men.
Now, I know the Angry Guys will say that is because women, just by virtue of having vaginas, can have all the sex they could wish for. But that isn't exactly true. Sure, even a flabby old crone like me knows of at least one notoriously seedy bar in my area where I could find a fuck buddy in ten minutes flat (make that five if I were buying). I could find a partner for most of these incel guys at the same place, if they would just
I know a lot of women who are lonely and horny, who spend many nights yearning and burning, writhing alone in their beds, listening to vintage Sarah McLachlan and gnashing their teeth. I know how that feels: I have been one of them myself.
I have had several periods of "involuntary celibacy". One of these periods lasted nearly five years, which, by anyone's reckoning, is a long dry spell. It followed a seven year relationship with a man who had finally
I had gained a lot of weight, and was living in rural Colorado, where I hardly ever met anyone, much less any eligible bachelors. Still, I was a young lady with a high libido. This was in the late eighties, the burgeoning era of internet dating, and I was among the first to try to hook up that way. There were long, passionate e-mail exchanges with a bipolar lad in Canada and a slightly demented elderly gentleman in California, but to no avail.
This was back when I still identified myself as straight, although even if I had realized I was in fact "hetero-flexible," I doubt it would have improved my plight. Looking back, eighty percent of the problem was that I was functioning under a dark cloud of depression, practically exuding desperation, and obviously needed therapy (which I eventually got) even more than a roll in the hay.
This was also the period that I discovered
A friend who was in similar straits used to joke that if she could order a man like a pizza, she would have tipped generously. We joked about taking up horseback riding, about telephone poles, about the gnawing hunger to be taken, to be well and truly fucked, to be royally rogered while we thrust our noses into some random stranger's hairy armpit and inhaled his musky pheromones.
We were, to put it bluntly, mad with unrequited lust.
I even thought about hiring a male prostitute. (This was, after all, the decade book-ended by "American Gigolo" and "My Own Private Idaho", so the concept of men commodifying their sexuality had become a thing.) I had no idea how to procure one, however, especially in my dusty little town snuggled high in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
Even if I had stumbled upon Richard Gere (or even better, Brad Pitt) in some cowboy bar, I couldn't yet un-bundle my desire for sex from my desire to be desired. And I don't think these angry male "incels" or frustrated PUAs are much different. Whether male or female, we look to sex with a partner to provide confirmation of our own desirability.
I broke my five year record as soon as I had moved to a larger city and found a career that (at least temporarily) I enjoyed and which put me in contact with a broader array of like-minded people. In fact, I proceeded to make up for lost time by having a string of
Now I am an old(ish) woman. My circumstances and needs are quite different. I haven't had penetrative sex for a number of years, and I don't miss it. Yet I can still remember the pain and frustration of my own days of involuntary celibacy, and sympathize with those men (and women) who rail against it.