Wow Liz Jones, you are something. I am sorry that your marriage ended and that your husband cheated on you, but uh, just because you have a particular experience doesn’t mean that your life speaks to some sort of universal truth. As an example, I don’t really like donuts all that much. I like basically every food, so it’s not that I hate donuts, but they’re low on my list. So clearly, women just don’t like donuts. We just have better things to eat. Right?
I don’t believe women are like characters in Sex And The City. We don’t shout and writhe and pursue sex as heartily and relentlessly as men do. It does not occupy our every waking moment.
The truth is: we don’t really enjoy sex that much. And we definitely don’t want sex as often as men do. That is a cold, hard fact. And women most definitely, incontrovertibly, do not want sex once they have children — or so my friends who have children confess to me. Particularly once their stomachs develop a texture akin to cold porridge.
The only reason we do have sex is to get a man, keep a man, steal his sperm and flatter ourselves that we are attractive.
Once we have a man, his children, his name on a piece of paper, his youth and his house, we no longer want to indulge in that ridiculous, time-consuming, horizontal dance.
…which is why lesbians just cuddle, and hetero women never have more than one child.
The story, basically, is that Jones married a lout who cheated on her a bunch of times. She wasn’t interested in sex and stopped having sex with him (which does not give someone carte blanche to cheat, obviously, because come on). But she apparently never really liked sex that much, and didn’t disclose that at any point, because she was trying to “steal his sperm” to have babies and make sure she lived in a nice house. He started cheating on her basically from the beginning of their relationship, because he is terrible. He admitted sleeping with a sex worker before they met, which she found “refreshing.” And when they finally got divorced, she felt sorry that she hadn’t just looked the other way when it came to his indiscretions. (Instead of, you know, talking about it and working out a plan if they wanted to stay together but he wanted to have sex with other people).
Jones talks about how she would scream at her husband for watching porn, and how he cheated on her repeatedly but her biggest regret is that she wasn’t “forgiving” enough. So: She hates sex (because she is a woman and all women hate sex), but believes that men have to have sex constantly, so when her husband cheats on her (with all kinds of other women who also hate sex?) it’s not really his fault. And now their marriage is over and it’s because she wasn’t forgiving enough — not because she married someone who she didn’t want to have sex with and who is also a cheating bastard and ran around behind her back over and over again.
Which is sad, but what?
For a lot of people, sex is important (I am one of those people, actually). For people who feel that sex is necessary for a happy life and for whom sex is nearly as necessary as eating or breathing, sexless relationships can feel like torture or emotional manipulation. It can be incredibly heartbreaking to feel like the person you love, who is supposed to be your lover, isn’t sexually interested in you anymore. For some people in relationships, withholding sex (or demanding sex) is emotional manipulation. If you know your partner has a high sex drive and you dislike sex, and you’re only having sex to get them to marry and then impregnate you (after which you’re no longer willing to have sex with them, and not willing to let them watch porn or have sex with other people), it is manipulative to not disclose that plan, and it lays the foundation for a very screwed up relationship. It will also screw up your relationship to demand sex constantly from someone who doesn’t want it, or to assume that someone who tells you straight-up “I have a low sex drive” or “I don’t like sex” is going to change because you are just so great. That does not happen! And relationships are all about compromise, but you can’t really compromise until you have all the facts laid out on the table, which neither Liz Jones nor her husband did (Liz didn’t seem to disclose that she was using sex purely as a tool to get wifed, and her husband didn’t disclose that he is a cheating piece of shit who was planning to use the “men just need sex constantly!” excuse to bang a bunch of other women). Which isn’t to say that people with differing sex drives can’t have functional relationships; of course they can, because people compromise all the time. But if you aren’t willing to come clean about your own desires, and especially if your view is “women hate sex and men are animals,” you’re going to have some problems.
Of course, your relationship is also going to have problems if you’re a terrible person, which is maybe the issue with both Liz Jones and her sleazy ex-husband.