From S/M & Love to Activism [BDSM Part III]

by cherryblossomlife

**This is part III of a three-part post. Part I and Part II are here.

S & Love

After diving into the complicated depths of female masochism, addressing sadism is like coming up for air. Due to its simplicity. Because a woman should never forget that whatever her personal feelings on the matter, and whether or not she gets off on pain and humiliation, the inescapable truth is that she is with a man who enjoys hurting her.

This may sound obvious. But many women seem to be in complete denial over the fact that men really and truly do want to hurt them; despite the fact that the patriarchal propaganda of porn has now permeated the entire world. Turn on the TV any night of the week, watch almost any movie, and it will invariably involve men hurting women. In a brilliant Orwellian coup, men have somehow managed to convince women that hate is love. 

What would happen if all women realized that men, in general, want to hurt them?

In the words of one sadist:

” This scene was the first time I ever experienced “dom space” or “god mode”. This girl took every thing that I threw at her and begged for more. almost 90 minutes into a scene that should have lasted no more than 40 and I finally snapped to and realized that she would NEVER ask me to stop. She flat out couldn’t. Not that she was spaced, not that she was unconscious, or that she was out of it. It just wasn’t in her nature. Now, I have seen this sub receive more pain and punishment than what I put her through, but I was not at the level of skill to provide that level of pain safely. I had to call MY safeword and have someone else take over the scene”

“…In that particular scene with the ‘black hole’ I was afraid that she would continue accepting to a level that would cause harm. At the moment that I knew I could no longer continue I clearly remember thinking to myself “I could kill her and she would thank me with her dying breath.” That, as one could imagine, shook me to my very core. I find myself, as do most of the people around me (or so they tell me), to be a fairly gentle person with a compassionate nature and a big heart. The thought that I had put myself into a position where such a thing is possible made me physically ill.”

Perhaps when women talk about the empowerment of submissiveness, they are actually talking about the power of the double bluff: “You want to hurt me? Screw you; you’ll never hurt me more than I want to be hurt myself.”

At least sadistic males are honest when they use sadomasochism to eroticize society’s subordination of females– getting off on the fact that in all areas of society, from politics to business to law, women have very little power. Charlotte Croson points out that it is, quite literally, the eroticization of power difference: “the erotic kick of power disparity, that is the sine qua non of patriarchal sexuality“.

I found the first-hand accounts of sadists refreshing to read because so often women are fed lies about men’s motivations. We are bombarded with patriarchal reversals, designed to throw us of the scent. We are pointed in the direction of beautiful poetry, as though no further proof be needed that men. love. women. We are supposed to turn a blind eye to the fact that while these gallant bards were coining sumptuous stanzas in the name of the fairer sex, real women were, quite literally, chattel in the eyes of the law.

Love songs and Valentine’s day serve the same purpose. “Love” is the concession men have traditionally offered women. In Sexual Politics, Millet shows us that “love”  is a form of chivalry, men’s way of allowing women to save face, so to speak:

It is generally accepted that Western patriarchy has been much softened by the concepts of courtly and romantic love. While this is certainly true, such influence has also been vastly overestimated. In comparison with the candor of “machismo” or oriental behavior, one realizes how much of a concession traditional chivalrous behaviour represents–a sporting kind of reparation to allow the subordinate female a means of saving face. While a palliative to the injustice of woman’s social position, chivalry is also a technique for disguising it. One must acknowledge that the chivalrous stance is a game the master group plays in elevating its subject to pedestal level. Historians of courtly love stress the fact that the raptures of the poets had no effect upon the legal standing of women, and very little upon their social status. As the sociologist Hugo Beigel has observed, both the courtly and the romantic versions of love are “grants” which the male concedes out of his total powers. Both have the effect of obscuring the patriarchal character of Western culture…”(Millet, pp37)

Perhaps we can draw a parallel between Millet’s analysis of the way “love” keeps women bound to their oppressors and the way that male sadists make concessions with their female subs. I know of a case where a woman’s husband would beat her black and blue and then kiss and bathe her bruises afterwards with sweetest tenderness. And in the article S & M story, one woman describes how her husband was at his most loving and kind right before he was about to abuse her:

I felt like a sort of traitor. He would talk to me, tell me how much he loved me, as he was tying me up, spread eagle, to our marriage bed. He would kiss me gently, more gently than he ever kissed me before we fell into this strange ‘fantasy’ of BDSM. Then he would hit me, or whip me, or stick strange things inside of me and I was supposed to like it. I knew, somewhere inside of me, that I was supposed to like it. The confusion set in and my mind became divided. This was my husband, the man I had sworn to be with, the man who pledged his love to me. Surely, he didn’t WANT to hurt me, and, even if he did, it was my husband, the man I loved. The man who loved me. I was supposed to be enjoying his attentions.

The author of the article was a completely dehumanized, generic “woman”. When a man hurts a woman, especially through a sexual violence, the nullification of her humanity is horrifying to her: she  is suddenly forced to see herself through men’s eyes. The scapegoated women are no longer Over There Far Away in the brothels, she has transitioned, become the scapegoat known as Everywoman. She glimpses for a moment the woman-hatred that society attempts to contain by channelling it towards prostitutes. [Not that her experience is in any way comparable to a prostituted woman]

The love and adulation of men, even if it were genuine, does nothing to better the lot of the particular living woman (Greer). A woman would do well to believe a man when he demonstrates that he hates her. It seems to me, that if a man declares his undying love, the only sane thing for a woman to do is to run for the hills.

The lyrics to the song, Where the Wild Roses Grow cannily demonstrate that love, sex and death are one and the same in phallocracy.  Written by Nick Cave in 1995 for the album “Murder Ballads” , it succinctly sums up the interchangeability of women in the eyes of men; the necessary dehumanization of females (necessary, that is, for the continuation of patriarchy) and the male lust for necrophilia.

“They called me the wild rose
But my name was Eliza Day
Why they called me that I do not know
For my name was Eliza Day…”

Male masochism

Another commonly made mistake is the concept that female dominatrices are able to exert tangible power over men.

Yet more lies.

When a woman is a “domme”, she is still serving men. As Sheila Jeffreys points out in Beauty and Misogyny, male masochistic fantasies involving women are based on the amusing pretense that the power dynamic has shifted, an erotic pretense, which of course could not exist without the actual subordination of women in real life. When a man pays a prostitute to “subordinate” him, it is clear where the real power lies. Jeffreys makes the point that a person with true power out there in the world would not need to spend her time dealing with the bodily fluids of men in  exchange for cash. Whether she is a prostituted or a voluntary domme, outside of the BDSM scene nothing has altered: the man’s place in society is set in stone.

Male subs appear to be acutely aware of this fact, whereas women in the BDSM scene come across as being surprisingly ignorant of the true nature of male masochism. They seem to fall for the notion that they are powerful, when in fact their role is to cater to male sexuality. The female domme’s enjoyment is neither here nor there.  If she enjoys it, all the better. If he can’t find a woman who enjoys it, well that’s what prostitutes are for.

Or if you’re a heterosexual guy who likes being a bottom, and you happen to have a spare female slave handy (aka a wife) you can call yourself “trans” and coerce her into pretending you’re both lesbians [true story!].

Whether “top” or “bottom” it is the men who are in control every step of the way, thanks to their caste status: male.

“In SM pornography and prostitution women are beaten, tied up, fistfucked, burnt, cut, by the male customers. But women perform the role of dominatrix to men too, because that is a way that men can gain the excitement of submission in an environment that they control. As fashion pornography has incorporated men’s sexual interest in sadomasochism both these two sex industry roles on the part of women are represented for men’s sexual excitement.” (Sheila Jeffreys, Beauty and Misogyny pp. 91)

In the same vein, fashion house designers such as Thierry Mugler claim that their  BDSM-porn influenced designs empower women:

“There are other remarks by Mugler which indicate his philosophy. He says that he seeks to make women powerful, “I only like women who have power. I put women on top of the world.” (1998, p. 85) This sounds very like the sentiments of McQueen above. It is hard to accept unless we believe that dominatrix prostitutes really have power in the world. Women who seek power are more likely to want to enter the media, or IT or some other aspect of the corporate world rather than dealing with men’s bodily fluids for economic survival.” He tells us that, “The Mugler woman is a conqueror who controls her looks and her life. She is free, self confident, and she’s having fun.” (1998, p. 202) The women covered in black vinyl and insect paraphernalia don’t look as if they are having a tremendously good time, however. He continues, “Every woman has a goddess within. I like to bring her out.” (p.110) But why a goddess would be dressed in the stigmata of sadomasochism is not clear. Mugler explains his porno vinyl look by stating, “Black leather, vinyl, nothing’s more classic than that.” (1998, o. 138). Black vinyl does have a history, but not in women’s everyday fashion. It has a history in men’s fetish clothing stores. It is a classic of pornography. Mugler opines that, “Elegance is courage and audacity, and an animal instinct that shows in every movement. It is harmony and oneness, and enjoying one’s body.” (p.164). This is opposite a photo of a woman with material draped across her torso  and held up by nipple rings. Elegance is not the first word that comes to mind.” (Sheila Jeffreys, Beauty and Misogyny pp. 101)

Furthermore, to many men “woman” and “masochist” are interchangeable. Which is why so many men have confused themselves into believing they’re female, when of course they’re not.

“For conservative men who want to gain the sexual excitement of masochism it may seem impossible to remain “men” because they associate manhood with dominance. But women and lesbians do not base their self-definition on sexual masochism. This is not the very core of our understanding of ourselves as it is for autogynophiles…. There is an arrogance in the assumption on the part of such men that their sexual interest in subordination makes them women…” (Sheila Jeffreys, Beauty and Misogyny, pp 61)

Peter calls himself a “lesbian”. He is quite open about the fact that being a  woman means masochism to him, and says:

“We haven’t even talked about the masochism of it all. I think, sexually, there is a desire to be punished, and part of that is the illusion of what women are. That they’re there to be the sexual object and there to be the punished object. It all kind of goes together… There is a degradation aspect to it, of giving up control. Part of the whole transsexual experience is to live that fantasy of spreading your legs and being fucked. (Vitzhum, 1999)

The cross-dressing author Charles Anders notes:

It may be politically incorrect, but I’m guessing a lot of guys associate wearing slips and hose with a passive, receptive role in sex… For some guys, becoming feminine could be part of a fantasy of submission, where someone else ties them up and spanks them, or dresses them up as a French maid named Fifi and makes them serve cannolis on their knees. (Anders, 2002, p.1o in Beauty and Misogyny pp. 59)

In the video below, “Amanda” is a typical autogynephile who sees “woman” and “masochist” as synonymous. [I don’t actually recommend watching this vid, by the way. It is a lengthy diatribe of the life journey of one male dom. But because of his homosexuality (I assume) and perhaps because of his pretty-boy looks, he was subjected to many of the same experiences that girls are growing up. He shows symptoms of trauma which stand out when they manifest in men, but are par for the course when exhibited by women.]

The Dark Side of Porn – Me and My Slaves (2006) from FlangeFart on Vimeo.

To BDSM Activism

The aim of The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom is to raise awareness and promote the normalcy of sadomasochism.  BDSM has now become a movement. In a painful irony, women are expending valuable energy marching on the streets for their right to be accepted as subs by society. They demand social acceptance for their “alternative” lifestyle and seek understanding from family and friends. There is much hand-wringing over when is the best moment to “come out”, and they hope one day that their lifestyle and alternative (read: mainstream) sexuality will be accepted at work.

BDSM Activists

BDSM Activists

As if it wasn’t already normal.

As if we do not live in what Mary Daly termed “the sadomasochistic society”, where females are relegated to the role of “sub” at birth.

The double un-think of BDSM “activists” is that they claim to be a marginalized minority, when in fact they wield a lot of clout and have an enormous public voice and platform. By contrast, radical feminists are silenced at every turn.

The ones who are, in fact, denied speech by almost all alternative (not to mention mainstream) publications are radical feminists, specifically in their attempts to critique what they see as a male supremacist sexuality. (Adriene Sere)

By claiming minority status BDSM activists are creating yet another reversal. We see exactly the same dynamics at play when the powerful trans lobby uses its class power (the sexual class: male) to further deprive women (females) of the few rights they have. It is a cruel “double double unthink” whereby powerful white heterosexual men get to claim minority status.

Further examination of the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom website reveals that that their real aim is to get men who harm women off scott free by searching for “signs” that a woman consented to whatever sadistic act that was committed on her body. A link to the left of their website reads: “Lawyer says tape proves Rough Sex was Consensual”. The article contains statements such as “It’s just the evidence shows to me she’s lying, and the video will support it as does the audio; it’s sad why she would do this, I have no idea,” Hanlon said….”

Which is the only logical direction BDSM can go… It has now become very fashionable for murderers to say that their victim wanted it, and for the court to believe them. In Italy recently, a 42 year old man killed a student in what he called a “sex game gone wrong”.

“The engineer was originally held for murder but authorities in Rome believe Ms Caputo and her friend consented to the game.”
Jane Longhurst’s murderer claimed he had killed her in a “sex game gone wrong”. In fact, phone records show he had tricked her into visiting him by pretending her friend (his girlfriend) was home. The 2004 murder conviction for his March 14th of 2003 strangulation killing was  overturned on appeal:

All he had to do now was convince another jury during his retrial that he didn’t do it on purpose.

The jury would have to ignore the fact that after Jane Longhurst’s death, Graham Coutts put her body in storage and kept visiting it to masturbate, displaying a disturbing fetish for necrophilia.

They would have to ignore the fact that he regularly watched extreme pornography that was based on strangling women and having sex with their corpses.

They would have to ignore the fact that pathologists indicated that Graham Coutts strangled Jane Longhurst long after it was apparent that she was in danger and for a while after she was actually dead.

Well, they didn’t ignore those facts.

On July 4th, 2007, Graham Coutts was again found guilty of strangling Jane Longhurst to death with a pair of tights.

As we can see, women are now being accused of consenting to death. Of consenting to being murdered.
Why not? After all, if they can consent to pain and rape, why not death too? How can a line be drawn, when we know that porn is linked to sex crimes, and that rapist-murderers get their ideas from BDSM porn? Like the British man who recently raped and murdered his twelve year old niece ‘because he felt like it‘, in order to re-create a scene from one of the hundreds of porn movies in his collection?
And it works the other round way too.
What about women such as Annabel Chong, who after being subjected to sexual attacks in real life attempt to exorcize their trauma by becoming involved in porn? Surely it matters that we can never know for sure who is and isn’t re-enacting trauma when they “consent” to becoming a masochist?
 Thanks to the tireless campaigning of Jane Longhurst’s mother, the UK law has now been changed to allow the police to prosecute a man in possession of violent porn.

To Radical Feminism

On a positive note [wry smile], I found a mainstream pro-BDSM  website offering this advice:
“BSDM may seem weird, but you’ve gotta admit; the act of “normal” sex is pretty fucking weird by itself. Seriously, what difference does getting tied up and spanked really make when you’re already playing Stick Your Penis In Her Vagina? Let’s keep perspective here, people.”

She has a point. “Dick-centric sex” is *not* seen as the only way to get it on in BDSM circles. One Agony Aunt and Uncle website entitled Dear Dom even go as far as to call PIV/dick-centric sex as “vanilla”. When a woman writes in asking for advice because she doesn’t fancy having PIV with her new man, some alternatives are suggested:

“If you truly want to move away from pen-opoly to BDSM, try playing some new games”

Pen-opoly. Would she have received such an understanding response from a mainstream magazine or website? Or would she have been coaxed into having PIV one way or another?

Which leads us to the subject currently being discussed at Fabulous Fab Stuff. Could the appeal of BDSM be the fact that there are rules such as “safewords” and “aftercare”? Whether the rules are adhered to or not, does the concept of rules offer an illusion of safety and love that a woman wouldn’t get with a vanilla guy? Women’s attraction to BDSM becomes understandable when you see it in this context. And if PIV is avoidable, what’s a bit of pain compared to an unwanted pregnancy (which inevitably leads to a lot of pain)?

As I reach the end of this three part post, I have to go back to the beginning. The existence of BDSM is perhaps not so much the tragedy here as is the fact that so many women see it as a portal to freedom. Women have  wholeheartedly embraced this soul-destroying, woman-hating cultural practice,  just as Chinese women, with crushed and damaged spirits, embraced binding their eight year old daughters’ feet. Like the lotus foot, contemporary female sexuality has been twisted and contorted beyond all recognition.

If I think about what this means for the revolution, I’ll go crazy. Because ultimately, I believe that the desire to revolt is the most important weapon in an oppressed group’s armory . Even if we do not have the means to follow through (and most women cannot afford to spend a night in jail); even if we’re too frightened to risk a police beating; even if the third wave doesn’t gather momentum before men destroy the world taking us down with them, nothing can be more wretched than the thought of women willingly submitting their hearts, souls and bodies to men’s destructive sadism

 But back to pain. If there’s one message I want to leave to sex-positive BDSMer “feminists” it is this: if you can’t give up the adrenalin rush you get when men are beating and hurting you, can’t you at least join some feminist rallies where there is a police presence and do some social good at the same time? I have it on good authority that participating in a radical feminist march is the most exhilarating high ever. And the police do so love it when women step out of line so they have an excuse to retaliate with force. Because society does not tolerate women who are truly subversive.

Police beat women at a women’s rights march in Turkey

Police beat women at Sudanese women’s rights protest

Police beat and grope Egyptian women at Tahrir square women’s march

Police order women protesters, including one pregnant woman, to strip in Zimbabwe

Ongoing military beatings rapes and femicide of Honduran women

[thanks everyone who commented on my thread at Cherryblossomlife, because the comments there helped me formulate this post]

72 Responses to “From S/M & Love to Activism [BDSM Part III]”

  1. I like how you said, “As if it wasn’t already normal.” I cringe when I hear things like BDSM is an “alternative lifestyle.” It’s not subversive or radical at all, it’s horribly normal. It’s so mainstream it’s predictable. There’s nothing really alternative about it. It’s just more of the same. “Vanilla” is BDSM. Given our cultural training from day one as women, there is no giant leap required to move from more subtle BDSM to more blatant forms.

    Having the illusion of safety and some rules would certainly be seductive, but I wonder how much of the appeal also has to do with craving some honesty? I know for myself I’ve almost come to prefer dealing with overtly sexist men, simply because they don’t screw with your mind. At least I know where I stand. There’s no illusions here! I’m absolutely starting to despise so called feminist/liberal men that just screw with your brain and constantly disappoint you. It’s almost as if some of them are worse psychologically. They make my brain hurt.

  2. Oh, most brilliant Ms. Cherry Bomb. ❤

  3. it is indeed ironic that fear of being brutalized by men and by the police *is* one thing that stops some women from political organizing and feminist resistance…yet being brutalized by men within the “intimacy” of BDSM is being pushed as being subversive, and “resistance” in itself. its not. of course, the women who are practicing it arent feminists. and if men are participating, you can be damn sure whatever they are doing is supporting patriarchy and their own male power, always. mens “enthusiastic” participation in ANYTHING should be the equivalent of about sixteen billion red flags in every case, especially in anything to do with sexuality or “sex” with women. we have seen this with mens participation in slutwalk.

    also, this is fucking chilling:

    I was afraid that she would continue accepting to a level that would cause harm.

    note the multiple reversals here. HE was afraid (when she was actually very close to dying by his violent hand, by his own admission). SHE was “accepting” (when HE was actually perpetrating). SHE was about to CAUSE HARM to HERSELF (when he was actually harming her). its stunning, it really is. delusional, victim blaming. if he had KILLED HER, it wouldve been HER FAULT. not his.

    in anti-climax, sheila jeffreys notes that the author of “naked lunch” killed his wife. he apparently shot her in the head, during a game of “william tell.” he wasnt prosecuted.

  4. and yes, all of this is soooo normal. its stunning that anyone wouldnt see this. i agree with yttik, some of the appeal has to be that at least its honest in its brutality. sort of. and if theres no PIV involved, there is going to be a pretty universal appeal there for women who know how sickeningly dangerous PIV really is. too bad BDSM as a movement hasnt taken any kind of a vocal or political stand against PIV as an institution, or even totally stopped practicing it, and have in fact erased its dangerousness by calling it “vanilla”. where semen is present, there is no such thing.

  5. This is so painful to read, so clear, and the insights so deep. This is the germ of a real psychology. Well said!

  6. A very interesting read.

    About men’s “love” for women: in Star Trek Deep Space Nine, at the very end of the series, Julian tells his best friend Miles that he is more important to him than the woman he loves. And obviously Miles feels the same way although his wife is quite handy… Romantic, isn’t it?

  7. I wish for you to recover as much as possible.

  8. Wow, amazing work, Cherry!

    re hetero romantic love- Its link to BDSM in correct:

    “The female life-force is characterized as a negative one: we are defined as inherently masochistic. [. . .] Sexual masochism actualizes female negativity, just as sexual sadism actualizes male positivity. A woman’s erotic femininity is measured by the degree to which she needs to be hurt, needs to be possessed, needs to be abused, needs to submit, needs to be beaten, needs to be humiliated, needs to be degraded. [. . .] Romantic love, in pornography as in life, is the mythic celebration of female negation. For a woman, love is defined as her willingness to submit to her own annihilation. As the saying goes, women are made for love–that is, submission. Love, or submission, must be both the substance and purpose of a woman’s life. For the female, the capacity to love is exactly synonymous with the capacity to sustain abuse and the appetite for it. For the woman, the proof of love is that she is willing to be destroyed by the one whom she loves, for his sake. For the woman, love is always self-sacrifice, the sacrifice of identity, will, and bodily integrity, in order to fulfill and redeem the masculinity of her lover.”

    ~ Andrea Dworkin, in The Root Cause.

    I think genuine love is more possible between womyn than between a man and a womyn. Womyn are kidding themselves thinking that men really “loves” them. All men love is power and misogyny.

    re male masochism- well-researched, what’s you’ve found, Cherry. It is very clear that sadism and masochism are both male inventions, just like masculinity and femininity are. Men simply occasionally wanna play with the other (subordinated) role which their male-supremacist society itself has created. This does not change the fact that the one in the ‘bottom’ position is always ‘feminised’, though not stigmatised as real females are (i.e. we are stigmatised as being “less than human” in the patriarchal psyche). We, radical feminists, nail it we say that womyn are not simply being discriminated against only on the basis of whether or not we conform to ‘femininity.’ We are also discriminated against on the basis of our female biology. That’s why the male masochists still has power He is still male, within a society that protects males over females…

    re “BDSM activism”- Seriously, what do those people hope to advocate here? They are not members of a ‘minority.’ BDSM is mainstream. Sure, womyn should never be shamed for whatever degrading acts they’ve been culturally groomed to participate in. But it is very sad, so sad, to see womyn walking down the streets defending their “rights” to be abused. Ever since ‘2nd wave’ feminism has been silenced from most of society, we’ve come a long way baby, huh?

    I remember the stories of murdered womyn (like Longhurst), pretty gruesome stories. 😦

    re radical feminist activism- Well, sure, BDSM definitely prevents revolution:

    “An interesting answer is suggested in a criticism that Sarah Hoagland once brought against sadomasochism as an irresponsible illusion whereby we get to play at having power over each other instead of seeking the real political power needed to end oppression. If she is right, sadomasochism can sublimate desires for real political power. Consequently, those with real political power in an oppressive society would benefit most from the sadomasochism of others, as antifeminists may profit most from feminists battling one another over sadomasochism. Without the catharsis of sadomasochism, participants’ hostilities might have been directed against social oppression. But if we become addicted or compulsively fixated in sadomasochism, eroticizing roles of dominance and subordinance, whatever hostility spills over the bounds of the contracts seems more likely to be directed against those who would resist oppression. Thus, sadomasochism may purge us of revolutionary impulses, not only by getting rid of our hostilities, but also by redirecting them, channeling them ultimately against ourselves and those who should be our allies. If so, what sadomasochism eliminates are hostile impulses that might otherwise be used in politically productive ways to bring about real social change. This would make the sadomasochism of others safe for oppressors.”

    ~ Claudia Card, in Consensual Sadomasochism: charting the issues.

    So long as members of the oppressed class ‘get off’ on their own subordination, they remain resistant to real social change. I think part of the problem in all of this is that there is apparently no room in our culture for talking about orgasms that simply don’t feel good. There are bad things we have been conditioned to get off on, especially our own oppression and subordination. An orgasm just doesn’t make those things “right.” And it certainly does NOT prove anything (like e.g. those who say that womyn are “born masochists”).

    The fact that some of us, radfems especially, have been able to overcome the lie that we should “get off on our own pain, etc” and we have tried to re-build own sexuality in a non-oppressive way (something that can truly be ours, as much as it can be, under patriarchy) is proof that we, womyn, all have the capacity to preserve our own dignity in the realm of genuine female-centred sexuality.

    Female-centred form of Sexuality, however, is being constantly censored from malestream media, including when pseudo-‘lesbianism’ is being propagandised. Real lesbianism looks nothing like what is shown in most mainstream media. Not to mention that most malestream media is heteronormative and heteropatriarchal of course.

    It’s a real shame womyn are being so indoctrinated by their oppressors’ views… because when womyn stop getting off on BDSM and we find much healthier ways of channelling our sexual desires (if we really need to respond to them), then the potential for Womyn’s Liberation activism is here. When we learn to get off on egalitarian and female-centred dynamics instead, our potential for pro-womyn activism is much stronger than ever, because a fairer sexuality isn’t going to drain your gyn-energy. It is important that womyn seriously consider breaking away from oppressive structures that want us to get off on our own oppression and pain. Not all orgasms are ‘good’, and we should have room to express that…

  9. Hi, yes yttik, the *honesty* of sadistic men was quite refreshing to read. I was finally able to read something a man had written without cringing.
    Whereas everything about male masochism has me cringing from beginning to end. I think it’s disgusting the way they project their self-created masochistic fantasies onto females. In Beauty and Misogyny it’s also interesting to read about the fact that the majority of fashion designers are gay men. Too many of them are gay men for it to be a coincidence. And the fashions they create are really cruel and punishing (Corsets and Manolo shoes, for example). They project their own masochism onto women and force women to act it out. That’s what men are doing all the time in daily life, of course. Projecting a set of behaviours onto women and then *believing* that these decadent fantasies of theirs actually have anything to do with existing in a female mind and body. Masochism is only part of the female psyche insofar as men instistently, incessantly push their sadistic fantasies onto us. If women had their way, men would just leave us alone.

  10. “This scene was the first time I ever experienced “dom space” or “god mode”. This girl took every thing that I threw at her and begged for more. almost 90 minutes into a scene that should have lasted no more than 40 and I finally snapped to and realized that she would NEVER ask me to stop. She flat out couldn’t. Not that she was spaced, not that she was unconscious, or that she was out of it. It just wasn’t in her nature.”

    Nothing that ever got born wants to be hurt, it is against our biological interests. There is no such thing as a masochistic nature, pain in nature is endured only in order to survive. Sadism however, does exist in nature and therefore is not dependent on social conditioning, you only have to watch a cat with a mouse to understand that. Though I doubt cats are so self-deluding that they think mice actually enjoy the pain they inflict on them! The woman that the sickening jerk above so enjoyed beating up, had been broken so often and so badly that her ability to endure pain had become her mode of existence.

    Every time a woman crawls around on her knees genuflecting to a man a bit of her dies, even if she is long passed the point of feeling it, That is what BDSM is; the dance of the undead! We rise like zombies from our daily activities, indulge in these behaviours and pretend it does not affect everything we are, and everything we do.
    A woman cannot function well as a feminist and do BDSM because soon her boyfriend will ask her to look at pictures of other women being hurt and degraded, he may ask her to get her girlfriends involved, he may ask her to entertain his real true loves (his mates) and finally he may expect her to involve her children.

    Great comment Maggie!

  11. “When we learn to get off on egalitarian and female-centred dynamics instead, our potential for pro-womyn activism is much stronger than ever, because a fairer sexuality isn’t going to drain your gyn-energy. It is important that womyn seriously consider breaking away from oppressive structures that want us to get off on our own oppression and pain. Not all orgasms are ‘good’, and we should have room to express that…”

    Maggie, I strongly agree that women need to begin to discuss this. Even women of my generation need to understand this. Also, this leads many to the assumption that a woman is heterosexual simply because she can have an orgasm with a man, I think, has kept a lot of women confused. This has been so in every generation, but as the sex gets sicker and sicker, it’s even more important to discuss it. Even lesbians are now practicing BDSM.

    I’d like to see the discussion center on love rather than sex. What is the difference between an orgasm in a loving, respectful, egalitarian relationship and one in an oppressive relationship? Radfems know: All the difference in the world. Building loving, egalitarian relationships needs to be a central feature of our dialogue. Cherry, these three articles set the stage for beginning to look at the following:

    1. The difference between love (caring, respect, egalitarian relationship) and trauma-bonding due to Societal Stockholm Syndrome.
    2. The difference between orgasm in the first type of relationship vs one in the second type.

    Thanks again for the great series and also for the insightful comments.

  12. You know it’s funny, that when I began radfem blogging I had orgasmic dreams. I even wrote a post about it and got some great replies. It was entitled “Does feminism give you orgasms?” 🙂 There was something about the intellectual stimulation coupled with all the brilliant personalities on here validating my life… that it created a kind of paradigm shift. I started having physical reactions in my dreams…
    But at the end of the day, the big O is not all that important in the grand scheme of things. I’d gladly give up all the pleasure in the world if it would stop men hurting women. 😦 But hurting women is HOW men get orgasms and they believe cumming is their divine right.

  13. Excellent series Cherry Blossom and particularly Part III which succinctly shows exactly how and why men claim women are supposedly inherently masochistic and exist only to be subjected to sadistic male sexual violence.

    Male supremacy wants not only male domination over all women but for all women to avidly view men as ‘gods who can do no wrong or harm to women.’ That is why male supremacy works so hard to convince women who dare to resist male domination that we are ‘crazy or mad.’

    Because male supremacy claims that ‘reaching orgasm’ is the supposed pinnacle of having a real sexual experience and that how this is achieved is irrelevant as long as ‘orgasm’ has been achieved, ensures that many women struggle to understand why sometimes they do orgasm whilst being subjected to sadistic male sexual violence. Answer is because it is a biological reaction and does not mean the woman ‘enjoyed it or even wanted it.’ But male supremacy claims this is proof women are ‘sex’ and when they orgasm via BDSM or sadomasochism this means ‘real sex has occurred.’ Sheila Jeffreys briefly discusses this in her book Anticlimax and yes it is an issue which does need addressing because male supremacists always claim ‘if the woman orgasms whilst a male is raping her this means she has ‘consented and rape did not happen!’

    Strangely enough or rather not strange is the fact a group of male homosexuals were prosecuted and convicted for subjecting some males to sadistic sexual torture including BDSM and sadomasochism. The UK courts did not view these acts as ‘consensual’ irrespective of defence claims the male victims ‘consented.’ Instead the male defendants were convicted because the court held the view that a male (but not a female of course) cannot consent to violence. But as feminists have proven time and again male supremacy views all women and girls as always being a state of ‘sexual consent 24/7 to a male(s) subjecting them to violent sadistic male sexual violence.

    http://www.spannertrust.org/documents/spannerhistory.asp

    I believe one reason why many women accept BDSM and/or sadomasochism is because they believe by accepting it they are somehow regaining control over a situation or situations wherein they have no control or even any power. All humans including men do not want to be seen as powerless but will try to regain control or convince themselves they ‘wanted to be in this situation/or it wasn’t so bad.’ This is called a coping strategy an attempt to regain control over a situation wherein the female victim has no control whatsoever.

    The issue of male power has been eradicated from so-called third wave feminist theory because it is supposedly ‘gender inequality which is the problem not male domination over women. Men have always been very clever at convincing women we are the crazy ones and because men have for centuries held socio-economic power this means women as a class/group have found it almost impossible to break through the chains of male propaganda. Keeping women out of education, politics, health and legal system ensures the dominant views are male centric and it is these men’s views/claims which are declared to be ‘truths’ rather than male supremacist propaganda.

    The so-called sex wars between radical and liberal feminists occurred because radical feminists told the truth about men and their hatred/contempt for women and challenged the social construction of male sexuality. But liberal feminists were terrified of ‘upsetting the men’ and I believe could not and would not face the truth. Namely men as a class/group do hold women in contempt and men as a class believe women exist solely to serve men in whatever capacity they desire, including being men’s disposable sexual service stations.

    Criticism of how male sexuality is constructed and promoted as ‘inherently dominant and controlling’ has been eradicated from malestream media and academia is instead engaged in claiming ‘gender queer’ is fine; sex positive is fine because no criticism must be made as regards dominant beliefs that ‘sex is not sex unless one person principally male is dominant and the other person (female) is submissive. Or rather women must revel in their submission to male sexual domination because this enhances male sexual pleasure and that is the name of the game. Women exist to sexually service men 24/7 including accepting male lies that if a man plays at being a submissive this somehow means he no longer retains his socio-economic power over women!

  14. Thank you Zeph and KatieS.

    Just to be clear- I believe there are some orgasms which can be genuinely loving, egalitarian and innocent; but I also believe they only exists in the realm of Real Lesbianism, i.e. true love between womyn that is genuinely female-centred and that involves true gyn-affection and egalitarian dynamics (what I’m talking about here obviously does NOT include any butch/femme role-playing, dildos, penis-substitute ‘toys’, or BDSM; all those things are inherently patriarchal and intend to censor real lesbianism). I believe this kind of sexuality can only exist in the realm of true Love between womyn though.

    Something else I’d want to be clear about-

    at the end of the day, the big O is not all that important in the grand scheme of things. I’d gladly give up all the pleasure in the world if it would stop men hurting women.

    Me too, of course (if there was such a sacrifice to make), but that’s not all of it. If some womyn-identified womyn would rather be spinsters or asexual, I’m all for this kind of choice, don’t get me wrong. 🙂
    However, if other womyn-identified womyn would rather sometimes experience what true female-centred sexuality feels like in the realm of some truly fair & egalitarian forms of love between womyn, well I’m not going to stop them. And I will not hide the fact that, for womyn- identified womyn who still sometimes have erotic desires, our real sexuality and love (that is the female-centred kind and the one that can only be experienced within the realm of Real Lesbianism) has always been censored by patriarchal society.

    Of course pro-womyn activism is more important than the Big O, Cherry. I don’t deny this. 🙂 But, what I’m saying is that I don’t believe egalitarian desires within the realm of gyn-affection and real lesbian love would stop us from wanting a revolution, unlike BDSM and heterosexuality would.

    Also, it is very important is that we, lesbians, first make sure to build genuine and strong emotional connections between us and the womyn we love, before we even think about any ‘sex’…

  15. I just attened a lesbian conference, and one of the ending “keynote” addresses was a presentation by Pleasure Chest— dildos, BDSM listed in sex acts, the whole disgusting scenario. Sponsored at a lesbian health conference no less.
    BDSM’s contamination comes directly from the gay male sex clubs, the AIDS epidemic, the whole sick drug addicted sex addicted scene that gay men enact everywhere in large urban areas.

    Marriage itself is about subordinating women, and as men become even more aggressive and in women’s faces… that’s what backlash is, the violence becomes more overt. The porn more womanhating… the trans invasion more obvious. It’s a sick system, but marriage and sex with men is the cornerstone of all of it. And it’s not sex with men or PIV, it is about domination, and every time a woman has a penis shoved into her, she is being used by men. Love is the “bait” of men… think of the bending down on knee with ring in hand, or the flowers, chocolates etc….. Go to any florist on Valentine’s Day and see the grime faced men waiting to buy flowers for “their” women. Believe me, they aren’t happy or rejoicing or carefree, they are seething with resentment that they even have to do this in order to get their PIV.

    Love to men is about the bait women, and your are the prey. BDSM is what is what men are all about. And even the male obsession with pushing penis into people doesn’t even stop with the threat of death, even gay men won’t admit that the AIDS epidemic (when everyone knew the cause) was about mass consentual murder, and if this is what men do to each other…just imagine what they think of women?

  16. “Of course pro-womyn activism is more important than the Big O, Cherry. I don’t deny this. ”

    Oh, I know you weren’t Maggie 🙂 Sometimes I just go off on tangents…

  17. sheilaG

    “grime faced men” Don’T know what that is when it’s at home but it made me 🙂

  18. I’M comment spamming now, but Hecuba, what you said here is the absolute crux of it all:

    “I believe one reason why many women accept BDSM and/or sadomasochism is because they believe by accepting it they are somehow regaining control over a situation or situations wherein they have no control or even any power. All humans including men do not want to be seen as powerless but will try to regain control or convince themselves they ‘wanted to be in this situation/or it wasn’t so bad.’ This is called a coping strategy an attempt to regain control over a situation wherein the female victim has no control whatsoever.”

    This is *exactly* it.

    And what is worse, men know all of this.
    I mean, men in BDSM, for example *know* the female reaction to sexual violence. They call it “bonding” and “magic” as we saw in the review on that Japanese-London Festival website in part II.
    Male doms give advice to other newbie doms and talk about pushing a woman to break her will, and they say if you do it violently she will bond to you. They *know* this is the outcome. It makes me hopping mad, especially when they then go on about there being something innate to women that makes them react like this (Evo-psych). But how do they KNOW that THEY themselves wouldn’t react in exactly the same way if they were subjected to a taste of their own medicine?

    So, men are one step ahead of us radical feminists here–and we’re going to have to change that by raising awareness somehow.

  19. You speak my heart! Thank you for putting in words the fury I have always brewing inside me. It is an unrealistic dream of mine for all men and women to truly understand their programming. I can’t be content, ever, with this awareness of the messages and hegemony that dominates our society. I have only found even remote piece of mind in female-centric circles, and even then women still plays out these roles for each other.

  20. “Grim” is what I meant to say Cherry….

    Radfems have a lot of work to do combating BDSM… it has certainly taken over the lesbian community, it is all over the place in gay male dom )no pun intended).

    But I do believe it is very hard for most women to even believe that men hate them. Even this small revelation is beyond the grasp of so many male identified women. And the worse men are, the more women step up and justify them. It gets very frustrating, but we’ve got to keep chipping away and alerting all women of the danger that is male out there, and what BDSM is all about.

    Good job explaining this, because I wouldn’t even be able to fully comprehend this.

  21. Are the egalitarian, loving womyn-identified relationships the way out of the trauma bonding? Is this the antidote?

    Yes, when I first found the radfem blogs, I had sexual dreams, too. Interesting, Cherry. I think it was part of the healing process. But, womyn-identified relationships, with or without the O are the antidote, it seems to me. And not just intimate partnership “couples” but rather the exchanges that are real and tell the truth.

    Oh, and the grime faced men buying flowers. Those are usually unsustainable flowers that are harming the people who must harvest them for slave wages and the environment with horrible chemicals to grow them, spoiling the land. A toxic symbol for toxic relationships. Uncaring.

  22. “They *know* this is the outcome. It makes me hopping mad, especially when they then go on about there being something innate to women that makes them react like this (Evo-psych). But how do they KNOW that THEY themselves wouldn’t react in exactly the same way if they were subjected to a taste of their own medicine?”

    Cherry they know it can happen to us because it HAS happened to them. We won’t see patriarchy clearly, until we understand this.

    We start out wanting to rule the world, we are told you can’t do that but here is a frock you can be loved if you wear it. We don’t think much of it but gradually we accept the situation and hope to get lucky by meeting mr right. In our teens we get told our power does not lie in being loved after all, but in being sexy, we like this even less. But many women try to accept the sex siren image because it is something they feel they can be. We are told that by being sexually compelling we will gain power over men and by extension self-determination. But being the sex class is just the final layer of their lies, because most men have more sex with each other than they ever have with women, women are the reproductive class.

    When as boys, men are sexually abused, they also bond to the man who abuses them, they hope it means he will love them, These relationships teach boys how to treat girls when they get older. They know every trick in the book because it has been played out on them. We are not their most desirable sex objects, though we remain their ultimate reproductive goal.

    Our power is in each other, in our ingenuity, in our skills as mothers. We are terribly disadvantaged by being isolated with one man. Which is why they invented marriage so we could be apportioned out between them, and easily controlled.

  23. Grime-faced men
    so in unharmony
    perpetual estrangement
    as if these wilting

    listing dying roses
    from South America
    fragranceless
    bought in duty

    could stand for
    anything

  24. Tiptree, that. is. brilliant.

    Zeph, you’re right,. this has happened to men. Patriarchy psychologically castrates them first so they can become the monsters they have to be to perpetuate the system.
    Actually, the video I’ve posted is rather interesting in that respect because what the man in it is trying to do is give up sadism…that’s the focus. So he has to burn all the pictures he’s collected of his “conquests” for example. He has acknowledged that what he does is wrong and he is dripping with self-loathing.

    He talks bout the rapes he experiences (first one aged 12 by two men) and how that later led him to prostitution, and then when he was a rent-boy he was brutally attacked… As you say, it’s happened to him. The difference between him and women is that he has made a very good living out of his prostitution; he has an enormous house, just from getting both men AND women to pay him to hurt them.

    I haven’t watched it to the end, but I think I will because I want to see if he manages to give it all up or if he’s reached the point of no return.

  25. “Are the egalitarian, loving womyn-identified relationships the way out of the trauma bonding? Is this the antidote? ”

    Yes, definitely KatieS. Everything that maggie and you have been pointing out is definitely going to work. We just have to get women to believe it.
    Most women have forgotten what it’s like to even spend time with women. Women are hilariously funny, for example, and yet that has been erased from our memory and we’re supposed to watch male stand-up comedians if we want to laugh. What a joke.

  26. ‘If womon had their way men would leave them alone’, Ace comment..CB

    Off our Backs……is what men need to be….and bugger off into the darkness they have created leaving us to all glow in the light and fresh testo free air of wommonishing…….
    Thank you for a brilliant article reinforcing all that I know and believe……

    SCUM manifesto declares all men deep down know they are ‘shite’ and spend their lives sucking the light and creativity out of womon in order to possesss what they so lack…….BDSM is a classic example of how this operates not just in dark corners of the vile porno world but in everyday lived experiences of womon…..

    Onwards to the revolution…

  27. I like the poem, tiptree.

    Yes, Cherry, I watched a good part of the video, though not to the end. It is horrifying, really. But it shows some of the things we have been talking about. The man in it has been traumatized, trauma-bonded, and he clearly understands how to do this to others. Pretty sickening. I didn’t see if he reformed, though. He compartmentalizes, obviously. Creepy stuff.

  28. About Butch and Femme: Bev Jo suggests that Butch is just a womon who resisted femininity since childhood and only because of her resistance to feminine mannerism appears to be masculine. Most women adopted femininity as littele girls or stopped resisting at some point (they are Femmes) but Butches never did that. Butches are being scapegoated for alledgely oppressing Femmes and other women by which men divert the attention away from themselves. She also wrote meaningful things about female sexuality.

    http://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/

    Regardless of whether you agree with her or not. She probably has a point about Butches.

  29. well said tiptree. 🙂

  30. Love the poem, tiptree.

  31. Yes, Feuerwerferin, I agree with Bev Jo about Butches and Femmes not being defined as “masculine” and “feminine.” I appreciated this understanding. “Butch” is not a role. “Butch” is a woman who refuses the feminine role. Refusing this role does not mean she adopts the flip side of the role (masculine). It means she stands outside the role-playing. It’s the misogynist culture that labels anything non-feminine as masculine. Confusing it with dom and sub roles is also not accurate, just part of the misogyny labeling. Women refusing all these labels is important.

  32. One thing I’ve noticed off and on over the years— I’m with a bunch of women friends–we may be at a concert, or just walking down a street or having a drink together at a favorite bar. We are laughing hysterically, without a care in the world… just good times with good friends. Every now and then, some man will comment in perplexity…”wow you’re all having such a GREAT time together!” As if this comes as a surprise, and then these men realize that women aren’t carefree with men, the laughter is not as break free out there…. they see for a moment how happy women are in a male free evening. And it shocks them. It disturbs them. And it is revolutionary… the laughter unnerves them.

    And comedy shows by men… not funny at all. Spontaneous comedy with women friends…hysterical and fun and completely supportive and non-denegrating. Male humor, always denegrating women.

  33. Yes I agree with Bev Jo’s analysis of Butch women.

    SheilaG, this week I began teaching a class of 45 women. Usually I teach mixed classes. My GOD, the difference in the atmosphere was astounding. Truly like night and day. FIrst of all, when there’s men in the class they are not respectful, really: not to me and not to their female classmates. It’s such a drain on the class energy, and the women suck up to them. But in this all-female class the other day we had a riot. It was hilarious. Most of all, everyone respected each other and when you have respect humour just automatically follows. The “shrinking violets” weren’t worried about speaking out, whereas if there’s even ONE male in the room everyone moderates their behaviour and everyone is quite tense: they try to ingratiate themselves to him, and male teachers tend only to interact with the attractive students [attractive by patriarchal standards, of course. To me all young women are beautiful]

  34. I agree with Bev Jo about Butches and Femmes not being defined as “masculine” and “feminine.” I appreciated this understanding. “Butch” is not a role. “Butch” is a woman who refuses the feminine role. Refusing this role does not mean she adopts the flip side of the role (masculine). It means she stands outside the role-playing. It’s the misogynist culture that labels anything non-feminine as masculine. Confusing it with dom and sub roles is also not accurate, just part of the misogyny labeling. Women refusing all these labels is important.

    I can understand that too, if that’s what Bev Jo meant. 🙂 I’ve noticed that too in my own community, womyn who identify as ‘butch’ but who are in fact just having a non-feminine style, and not playing any role.

    So, basically, what I meant in my above post (re butch/femme) was about resisting ‘butch/femme’ as role playing, like for instance what Sheila Jeffreys talked about in her book Unpacking Queer Politics, when she wrote about the fact that there were lesbians who were really trying to emulate masculine and feminine roles in their private lives.

    I did not mean opposing non-feminine appearances. Non-conformity (to patriarchal norms) is welcome of course. 🙂

    Ybawife- SCUM manifesto declares all men deep down know they are ‘shite’ and spend their lives sucking the light and creativity out of womon in order to possesss what they so lack…….BDSM is a classic example of how this operates not just in dark corners of the vile porno world but in everyday lived experiences of womon…..

    Yes, this is right. Men are shite, so they have to suck gyn-energy like damn vampires in order to to make themselves feel better. Womyn pay dear when their own gyn-energy is being drained…

  35. yes, that distinction makes perfect sense to me, Maggie. THat’s how I’d always seen it. IT was the Butch/Femme *role-playing* that Sheila Jeffreys had a problem with, especially in BDSM! And the fact that femininity is the behaviour of female subordination so we should reject that.
    Personally, I simply can’t reject it right now as I would probably lose my job, but I’ve been resisting it as much as possible (not wearing make up whenever possible for example). I would love to cut my hair short and wear a man’s suit… but then that would be embracing masculinity wouldn’t it?

    For the first few weeks after you-know-what happened to me I felt like a vampire had sucked out my blood. I felt hollow, listless and lifeless. I got a lot of support from you lot, and online friends plus friends in real life, but there was no doubt about the fact that I had become a hollow shell overnight. 5 weeks on and I’ve got my gynergy back. It is completely obvious to me that *he* on the other hand, has been walking around for five weeks with *boosted* energy levels. Energy that he *stole* from me!!!

  36. “he has an enormous house, just from getting both men AND women to pay him to hurt them.”

    Cherry this makes it sound like there is an equality of interest. The proportion of women who would pay to be in the hands of that nut, is minuscule. What money he makes he makes from men.

    I really can’t watch it, I think I may have seen it somewhere before. Anyway I know the true ending, he will never reform.

  37. Cherry, 😦 *big hugs* I hope you can get all the female friendship support you need IRL. I’m glad you’re feeling a bit better.

    *sigh* I hate men, torturing us so cruelly, and stealing gynergy like they do. Someone should just seriously send men back to Mars…

    I would love to cut my hair short

    Don’t worry, Cherry. I have a confession to make (I hope womyn here will still like me): I still have long hair (I don’t shave my body hair and I don’t wear makeup though 😉 ), and I actually somehow look “femme” IRL (lesbians tell me. I tell them I don’t wanna be feminine though). I know, having long hair is very uncommon for a lesbian separatists, but I’ve always been incredibly lazy with haircuts so I somehow find it easier having long hair (mine doesn’t tangle easily) for now.

    I’m still considering cutting my hair short someday. I don’t have a face that suits short hair, so I’ll perhaps go see a good womyn hair-stylist for recommendations. But right now, I’m lazy. Everybody at my work and at my Uni (that I know) knows that I’m a lesbian though, because I always hang out with the same dyke friends and I don’t speak to men.

    Ha, sorry I’m rambling…

  38. @zeph “Cherry this makes it sound like there is an equality of interest. ”

    Oh yes, sorry I didn’t mean it to come across like that! I meant “OMG, look at what a mess we’re in that a woman, even ONE woman, would PAY a man to abuse her!!!”

    @maggie, thanks. I slept a lot the first two weeks after. Mary Daly mentions this. Ghandi used to psychologically rape women ( I class what happened to me as psychological rape, which obviously can never be as bad as PIV rape because of the hellish aftermath of that and wondering whether you’ve got a STD or have fallen pregnant) by forcing them to spend the night in his bed. he was very proud of the fact he was celibate ( i.e above women) but would get women to hold him all night. WHat a sicko. Shamelessly stealing their gynergy along with their creativity and ideas too. God, can’t men do ANYTHING without women? One woman’s husband went to Ghandi, (who was obviously quite powerful) and offered himself instead, because he believed his wife was tired and that he, as a virile man, would be more invigorating.

    “Ghandi new better” Daly tells us.

    In other words, Ghandi knew that a man would never match up to the energy of a woman. Women are energy sources.

    “because I always hang out with the same dyke friends and I don’t speak to men.”

    LOL, yep that’d be the giveaway. 🙂

  39. Ghandi, the so-called “revolutionary”? Ugh… Awful. I didn’t know that. It shows that all men are bastards clearly (Even if there is such a thing as the oddly exceptional ‘good man’, he must be more rare than a needle in a haystack, really). I bet most male “revolutionaries” have raped womyn, one way or another.

    Take care, Cherry.

  40. I am very thankful to have these comments to read. I have been studying feminist theory, the media, the government and the oppression of women. However, I am in a relationship with a man and always struggling and unhappy trying to teach him to communicate effectively, and deal with his feelings. Even though he is a “decent” example of the male species, he is still completely controlled by the woman-hating messages he learned from his Christian upbringing. I am realizing each day how he dominates over me, and I have realized that this is my pattern – wanting to not disappoint the man even after I have been emotionally abused by him.

    This article, and the fact that men hate women, has really made me see things more clearly. It’s like a “duh” moment. Of course they hate us. There is NO WAY the things that are carried out in society, in relationships, in “casual” encounters and in the media could be perpetrated without them seething with hate. I see it now. I have always mistaken their “love.” The feeling I have had in my gut has always been right. Love is not this. It is rare to find people who know what love actually is.

    I am sending my love to all of you.

  41. ‘men cannot tolerate truly subversive womon’ that is the heart of the matter.
    ‘privatising womons lives ‘, is also a key factor in the control and management of womon
    nothing more threatening to men than a group of womon in solidarity and unison with each other, whether that be for pleasure and fun or business and activism against the system……

    The state dishes out the same old treatment.. for the same old tired reasons…..yes there is something definitely wrong with the state of maleness that as Tiptree2 says needs eradicating ………but how is the question?

  42. Yes rapideyemovement, it’s definitely hate.
    Zeph coined the term “repetitive hate syndrome”,after seeing the Japanese-London rope festival website, and I think that is perfectly apt when it comes to describing how men feel towards women. Let’s judge them by their actions, not their words.

  43. Wow, the thing about men stealing women’s energy is just what I’ve been thinking. They do it in all kinds of ways. Since I lived as a spinster for many decades, I noticed this primarily at work. Ghandi understood all too well, and there was a recent bio of him that was unflattering and details this, apparently. I’ve not read it, but it made some ripples when published. If you see men in positions of political power, they often have this sense of increased energy. They nearly all are stealing this from women, often by having sex, but not always, like Ghandi. The BDSM theft is really sicko, but there is no doubt that the men get increased energy from that. It’s something that bears increased scrutiny by radfems. Understanding it can help us educate women who may fall prey to this. Let men find their own damn energy. Keep our energy away from them. It is distorted and misused by them.

  44. As if we do not live in what Mary Daly termed “the sadomasochistic society”, where females are relegated to the role of “sub” at birth.

    The double un-think of BDSM “activists” is that they claim to be a marginalized minority, when in fact they wield a lot of clout and have an enormous public voice and platform. By contrast, radical feminists are silenced at every turn.

    LOLOL I’m going to begin every comment I write in main stream media with the phrase, “since radical feminists have abused our awesome power by dominating the social narrative, I’m sure you’re already all familiar with…..” LOL

    Btw, someone was asking in another thread how to spread awareness of radical feminism to those unsatisfied with funfeminism. Well, I first found radfem just by googling “radical feminism” — which I did immediately after someone foolishly said, “oh those awful radical feminists”. I knew it had to be AWESOME.

  45. Again another fantastic article Cherry! Been assimilating all this in small bites, way too uncomfortable and thought-provoking for me to do otherwise.

    From Zeph: Nothing that ever got born wants to be hurt, it is against our biological interests. There is no such thing as a masochistic nature, pain in nature is endured only in order to survive. Sadism however, does exist in nature and therefore is not dependent on social conditioning

    From KatieS: I’d like to see the discussion center on love rather than sex. What is the difference between an orgasm in a loving, respectful, egalitarian relationship and one in an oppressive relationship? Radfems know: All the difference in the world. Building loving, egalitarian relationships needs to be a central feature of our dialogue.

    From Hecuba: The issue of male power has been eradicated from so-called third wave feminist theory because it is supposedly ‘gender inequality which is the problem not male domination over women. […]The so-called sex wars between radical and liberal feminists occurred because radical feminists told the truth about men and their hatred/contempt for women and challenged the social construction of male sexuality. But liberal feminists were terrified of ‘upsetting the men’ […] No criticism must be made as regards dominant beliefs that ‘sex is not sex unless one person principally male is dominant and the other person (female) is submissive.

    From Cherry: Male doms give advice to other newbie doms and talk about pushing a woman to break her will, and they say if you do it violently she will bond to you. They *know* this is the outcome. It makes me hopping mad, especially when they then go on about there being something innate to women that makes them react like this (Evo-psych). But how do they KNOW that THEY themselves wouldn’t react in exactly the same way if they were subjected to a taste of their own medicine?

    From SheilaG: But I do believe it is very hard for most women to even believe that men hate them. Even this small revelation is beyond the grasp of so many male identified women. And the worse men are, the more women step up and justify them.

    From KatieS: Are the egalitarian, loving womyn-identified relationships the way out of the trauma bonding? Is this the antidote?

    Should I have just quoted everybody? 🙂 But those were the ones which resonated the most with me, my god Zeph’s blew my mind… Anyway, my response to Katie’s question: While loving relationships are the ultimate antidote to a system built on s-m, it’s only the short term answer, in my opinion — because hey it’s a cult, remember, and brainwashed cult members don’t decide to just up and change their religion overnight. It’s a process, first of all.

    1.) So first they have to become aware of the problem.

    2.) And then they must have a visible alternative. But most men are NOT egalitarian, nor do I believe they ever really desire to be. The dominant shouty class of men, within the entire class of men, just turns every feminist theory and practice back to sado-masochism the first chance they get. How can a majority of genuinely egalitarian male-female relationships ever be a realistic goal, when men aren’t interested and women are stuck in stockholm mode?

    Can we please consider the possibility that the revolution will not include most het women? Can we just give up this insane got-to-save-everyone-of-our-kind mentality? Please? How bout let’s save ourselves and let them choke on the stupid cock? Really honestly, if I knew thirty years ago what I know now, and many twenty-somethings *already know now*, I would drop that feminist studies major in a heartbeat AND GO INTO SCIENCE. I’d get hired in a lab and by hook crook and anything required I’d work my ass off to enable natural lesbian reproduction. I’d even smile and pretend I like men. Endocrinology, genetics, twenty years of work and we are there, not kidding. It’s only when women take our toys and walk away, will the bully every stop bullying. And at that point, men would say, “oh that? All those eons of abuse was just a joke, no hard feelings and hey let’s all be friends!” Fuck them, it’s time to go.

  46. 🙂 thanks for that excellent analysis mAndrea.
    I think het women do want to be shown the light. Daly talks of unwrapping the mindbindings and creating radical sparking. When I woke up from *my* mindbindings, thanks to the activities of internet radfems, I was already pregnant with my second child. It was like waking up and finding myself in quicksand or sinking mud. Needless to say, if I’d had my radical awakening at the age of 20 I would have done things differently to say the least. I would still have had kids, probably, because curiosity would have got the better of me… but I would have gone ahead and moved in to live with one of my fabulous female friends, one girl in particular, and stayed living with them forever and ever Amen. That was a dream of mine (to live in a flat with my best friend) that kind of got derailed by patriarchal propaganda.
    So I hold out more hope for het women. But I realize I may be wrong.

  47. what I am trying to say, is that if men aren’t really interested in egalitarian relationships (and it looks like they’re not), then het women can’t force them. So the whole thing is pointless. It’s like y’all spent the entire article, and entire thread, delineating the dynamic which renders sexism a permanent fixture, and then you go off into lala land about how to save them.

    I mean, do you realise that the argument you invisiblizing to yourselves, is the one which states “sexism is caused exclusively by culture”? Yet that argument falls APART extremely easy upon even a quick examination. Keep in mind, the one thing feminists cannot state is that sexism has always existed, for that would mean sexism is inherent. So for the ‘culture caused it” theory to be true, then egalitarianism must have existed originally. Yet, notice how gross sexism developed in a supposedly egalitarian society — which means by default that it is indeed inherent.

    fuck ’em, walk AWAY. 🙂

  48. oh yes, when you put it like that… then I 100% agree 🙂

  49. How can a majority of genuinely egalitarian male-female relationships ever be a realistic goal, when men aren’t interested and women are stuck in stockholm mode?

    Oh, I didn’t mean egalitarian male-female relationships. I don’t think it’s possible. If it were, there’d be men interested in that and trying to establish such relationships. And I don’t mean “feminist” men on the prowl for “sexually liberated” women. I mean, starting in the workplace and politics. I don’t expect to ever see that, even though it is crucial that women take power in politics and the workplace if the human race is to have any chance at all. But, being dumb as dirt, men just try to keep the power for themselves while we all go down the tubes.

    I meant egalitarian female-female relationships. Womyn-identified-womyn. That’s the antidote. I think that will also take some work, because no one in the patriarchy has had much practice at it, but I have faith that the work will bear fruit if done in earnest.

  50. yes.. I’m not interested in egalitarian male-female relationships either.

    An all-female community with men scrapping and killing each other on the fringes and outskirts of society, and never going near women, would suit me just fine.

  51. CBL: I just wanted to say that this series of posts has been paradigm-shifting for me. You named things here that had poked at the fringes of my consciousness but which I did not have the language – or education – to express. Such as BDSM always feeling slightly creepy to me, but I didn’t know why, since participants on the surface seem *so* enthusiastic. Some of my straight friends are into this and loudly proclaim how liberating, erotic, etc. it is, and I just didn’t know why that creeped me out. More than anything I’ve read on this blog or the many related radfem blogs, this three post series has spurred me to read and think more about these issues. It has made me think about some of the things that

    It was one thing to be solitary and think there was something very rotten in the state of Denmark, but another to see past the fun-feminist, sexxxy positive, malestream vilification of radical feminism / lesbian feminism, or even their definition of what rad fem / les fem is to read the materials first hand myself. At the very least, it allows me to really read “both sides,” and finally to read something that counters the dominant “sexxxy positive” narrative that defines the lives of my contemporaries and their ideas of what feminism “should be.” It all started with Dirt & Gallus Mag’s blogs and led from there. Until then, I honestly had not ever come across something that wasn’t Shakesville or Feministing or Christina Hoff Sommers or Elizabeth Fox-Genovese or “Memoirs of a Feminist Stripper” and the like.

  52. HI Signe, thanks so much for your post. I see your from Denmark… so the rot is there too it seems.
    I heard Denmark is a pretty egalitarian society, so therefore it doesn’t surprise me that BDSM is being pushed and promoted there. As women have made some gains over the past 30 years,it’s not a coincidence that violent porn and the eroticization of femicide has increased. Men would rather kill every last woman than give up any power.

  53. I love your post cherry,BSDM ugh.Very interesting,fantastic post.
    I’m very scared to post here because my abuser,my fahter took away my confidence.

    Anyway i’m a victim of childabuse,my father hurt me so much,mentally and physical,i thought i would never ever heal.
    But i survived,he’s dead now and i’m fine now.Still realy hate him and every time someone raises his hand or shout,i’m so afraid.
    Have two brothers and they act like nothing happend,i’m hurt and they?
    Here in Holland they say, “It’s your father,he has the right to do this

    Uhh no way.One day i stood up against him and hit him back,finally.

    I’m so glad i’ve found this blog,i love it.

  54. Carpenter28- Thanks for coming here, my friend, and speaking out so courageously. Girlhood abuse is so common, it’s pandemic. Men cannot even leave girl children alone. So sorry it happened to you.

    I’m so glad i’ve found this blog,i love it.

    Me too. Welcome here. 🙂

  55. Hi carpenter, thanks so much for reading.
    Your brothers have betrayed you in the worst way imaginable. Try to break away from them if you can, or failing that only interact with them on a minimal basis. Don’t reveal any of your innermost feelings to them. They will not validate your reality. They need to believe your father was a good guy.

    And I am so so glad you hit him back! Haha. Hold onto that memory.

    Please keep reading and posting.

  56. Maggie and cherry,thank you so much for your kind comments.It was very hard for me to write my first comment,like
    i said before,he took away my confidence and courage.

    My brothers,don’t see them so much anymore nor my family,they won’t believe me anyway.

    And yeah,i’m so glad i hit him back,that felt really good.Had enough,so much pain and scars everywhere.
    Still when i see something about child abuse,on tv or where ever,i’m so hurt and almost in tears.
    The worst part is: my daughter,people think i will hurt her like my father did to me but i won’t and that hurts so much.

    This blog is so interesting,still reading and hope i’ll post more.
    But it’s not so easy for me because he took away my confidence and my childhood and that hurts.

  57. carpenter28, thank you for your comments. They are so important. It reminds me of the old consciousness-raising groups in the U.S. in the 1970’s. Nearly all the women had feelings similar to what you describe. Our confidence had been taken away by fathers then boyfriends or husbands. For one thing, everyone back then thought spousal and child abuse was normal or even funny. I remember the old “Honeymooners” TV show, where abuse was treated as normal and a joke, for example. When we began to speak, it was very hard. It was about the right to speak, whether what we said was important or worthwhile. Each of us had not been heard at these deep levels before. Each woman usually felt she had taken too much time to talk. But we didn’t feel that of anyone else. And many of us had listened to males for hours and hours without getting our say in.

    Now we are doing this online. I’m so glad for the new opportunity and hope many more women will speak their truths. The truths of what it has been like and the truths of our lives as extremely valuable. The truths of our brilliant minds and hearts.

  58. “The worst part is: my daughter,people think i will hurt her like my father did to me but i won’t and that hurts so much

    FIrst of all, abusers are overwhelmingly male. The media pretends it’s 50/50 male-female but it’s nothing of the sort. Then when you factor in that women are the ones who spend most of the time with children you see that the chance of a woman becoming an abuser is negligible.
    Someone with your insight is never going to repeat history. Many mothers lose their temper from time to time and lash out at their kids, especially if they’re not getting the right financial and emotional support, but what your father did to you… no you will never do anything like that. Just ignore ignorant people who say things like that in order to hurt you.

  59. Thanks Katie and cherry.

    I know i will net ever do such a thing to my daughter but when she has a bruise on her forehead and your mother in law asks you”You did that to her,right?” I was so angry and shocked my wife told me it’s ok don’t worry.I was so angry at her,
    Every time people know my background they tell me that.But i will never do that,well my brothers are just like my father
    Really,i will never ever leave them alone with my daughter,if you know what i mean.
    I’ll try to ignore them but it hurts,a lot.It took me so long to recover and still,i’m hurt.
    Every time they talk about him,i cringe.

    Well thank the gods i’ve found this blog,thanks for your support.

  60. Well thank the gods i’ve found this blog,thanks for your support.

    No problem, Carpenter. *hugs* I agree with what Cherry and Katie said here, btw. It’s good you have a supportive wife though, when your mother in law supports male views like these. Don’t worry about people who say things like these; they’re being so male-identified to think you will do the same things that men do.

    (Carpenter is one of my friends. She’s in a lesbian marriage in Holland, btw.)

  61. Wonderful posts, cherryblossom! I’m so sorry about what happened to you. *hugs* You are being so strong for putting it out there and helping others with your experience. Thank you so much to all the girls who write this blog. It means so much to me. I’ve always been a loner. After getting to know radical feminism I got so aware of how much I have always longed for other womyn. I never could explain why I’ve always been so cut off from the world and sometimes even from myself. Sometimes it seems like I never existed at all, like the world around me, my experiences, my memories, my body, nothing has ever been real. You help me understand these things better. Unfortunatelly I still haven’t been able to do much with this understanding. It’s so weird when you girls mention about your good experiences of bonding with other womyn. I really don’t know what it is, though I’m a lesbian and have been with girls.

    I do agree that egalitarian loving womyn-identified relationships is the only way out. It’s sooooo difficult. I look around and only find womyn who truly only admire, respect and love men, from physical appearance to their personality, be it hets, bis or lesbians. Whenever it shows from them I feel so denied and violated. It hurts so badly when some brilliant feminists I know make concessions and show up with a boyfriend after all the revolutionary things they said, when they start discussing how sexaaaayyy men are, or point out how beautiful androgynous girls are (when I see that 90% of the so valued androgynous aesthetics involves the inexistence of the most remarkable female body characteristics like breasts, larger hips, more body fat, etc, though some girls don’t really have it naturally, which is fine, this preference makes me wonder), or how smiley and sweet they get whenever a ‘good’ feminine man is around, or how they rarely praise a woman yet stop the world to share their findings of a super/attractive/smart/insteresting gay man/movie/pic, or how they have little interest in talking about something else (us, preferably) other than men even if they are only complaining, it seems like as they can’t ignore reality anymore they found out a way to still have men at the center of their lives. Sometimes it gets very clear to me that they are fighting mostly because ‘patriarchy hurts men too’ than because of ourselves. It all makes me sick.

    As you said, love is the bait. As long as womyn are able to love men we’ll continue in captivity. Since an early age I feel womyn can’t truly love each other if they love men. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I’ve always been so cut off, I always felt denied, invalidated by other womyn and their good feelings towards men. Loving men and loving womyn is mutually exclusive. Only through the denial of our reality we continue connected to men. And men know it and keep perpetrating this Societal Stockholm Syndrome so they keep taking all our energy. Btw, I remember having lengthy conversations with my mom about how both of us felt depleted of our energies after being 20 min in the presence of my father and how he seemed perfectly aware of it, just like a vampire. Radical feminists have these notions very clear. Good to see you talking about it. Other feminists don’t ever seem to get it. It’s amazing that this blog provides space for these questions.

  62. HI Daria, Thanks for that wonderful comment. I agree with this completely
    “Since an early age I feel womyn can’t truly love each other if they love men.”
    We are forced to choose

  63. “I always felt denied, invalidated by other womyn and their good feelings towards men. Loving men and loving womyn is mutually exclusive. Only through the denial of our reality we continue connected to men.”

    Good comment Daria, groups of women who gather to talk about their suffering sometimes contain a few individuals who, having vented their emotions on other women’s time; will then attempt to create a moral high ground out of still loving men! Of course it is really a moral low ground, and it tramples all over the feelings of the other women in the room: forgiveness is often used as a cover for not being prepared to take any action. Women, are often not in a position to take action, or to get off the patriarchal hamster-wheel of het relationships, but we should be able to state this without resorting to the above tactics; sadly when we do we get blamed for that too. Women are brainwashed and beaten into believing they must constantly display some kind of virtue, to justify the air that they breathe.

  64. Thanks Maggie *hugs* I’m glad that you showed me this blog,still reading.This blog is so great.

    Daria wonderful comment,i know what you mean,when i’m in the same room with my brothers,10 minutes later
    my energie is gone and then i’m so depressed and tired.

    Zeph,great comment.I was not in the position to take action because i was so young.No one believed me,even the police and the doctor.I lived in fear,my whole childhood and there were times that he threatened to kill me so i slept with my door locked.When i was older, the pain was too much and i hit him back,on his head,first i thought i killed him but he was just unconcious.Later i could escape him,when i moved in with my girlfriend,now wife.Men are so cruel,i almost took my own life to escape him.

    Cherry so sorry what happend to you *hugs*

  65. “It seems to me, that if a man declares his undying love, the only sane thing for a woman to do is to run for the hills.”

    Epic.

  66. Until I read this, I had no idea that there were “BDSM activists.” That seems absurd to me. And the idea of “coming out” to your family seems even more absurd. Since when does your family need to know about what you’re doing sexually? I could be somebody who likes to have my toes sucked on, but I’m not going to construct any entire identify around it and make a big deal out of it. I certainly don’t have to go marching through the streets about it. It seems to me like this whole thing was carefully contrived by people who don’t have women’s best interest in mind. If anything, we should have a “Clit March” to raise awareness about the clitoris, for Goddess’s sake.

    Here’s something from a blog I really like, that I thought was relevant:

    “The grouping of women based on their gender preferences is not remarkably different than dividing women on the virgin/whore dichotomy. Whether you’re reducing women to their number of partners or the type of partners that interest them, you’re still boiling them down to their sexuality, pretending that all of their parts can be described in terms that really are only applicable for describing their sexuality. I don’t understand how a sexual orientation label could be used for determining what sort of music I might like, what philosophies interest me, the content of my character, what sort of clothes I wear, whether or not I’m promiscuous, how I cut my hair or literally anything about me besides who I might sleep with. My sexuality is one aspect of my life, and frankly it is not the most important one. Words like lesbian, straight, kinky or bisexual don’t say any more about the content of my character or nature of my accomplishments than words like madonna or whore do. These words still primarily define me by my sexuality, which in a patriarchal means they define me primarily in terms of my relationship with men…

    As time goes on, I see people dividing themselves into smaller and smaller groups. From straight/gay to straight/gay/bi to straight/gay/bi/trans to straight/gay/bi/trans/poly/kinky/queer and so on, so on, so forth. Even those groups divide into even smaller groups, just within ‘kinky’ you have bondage, leather, domination, submission, sadism, masochism, humiliation play, rape play, blood play, vore, torture play, water sports…on and on and on. I feel like the proliferation of these distinctions just goes to show how inadequate they are for saying something meaningful about people. In order to organize along the lines of these distinctions, these groups have come up with increasingly insular cultures, customs, lingo and rules. All this is accomplishing is the creation of new avenues for horizontal violence.

    Having these terms as identity markers as opposed to simple behavior classes or descriptions of behavior means that people really take these terms to heart and will assert that these archetypical labels are WHO THEY ARE. I don’t think anyone ‘is’ their sexuality, we are all so much more. The practical effect of personal identification with these sexual labels is that it is unacceptable to analyze sexual practices or culture in terms of the effect of these behaviors on society on a macro level. If a person identifies as a (reclaimed) slut, then they are going to be personally offended if an attempt is made to discuss pornified sexuality because they have internalized this to the point that they feel it’s ‘who they are.’ If a person identifies as kinky, then they are going to be personally offended if you question the merit of BDSM practices or their influence on society, because these practices are ‘who they are.’ If you discuss the effects on female identity of replicating and worshiping the masculine involved in butch/femme dichotomies and dildo culture, then lesbians will be offended because these images are ‘who they are.’ If you discuss the prevalence of anal sex, the dangers of a culture focused on promiscuity, or the appropriation of female terms and appearances prevelant in drag, then gay men are going to be offended because these images and practices are ‘who they are.’ If you discuss PIV-centered sexuality or the unfairness inherent in an expectation of unpaid domestic labor then straight men/women are going to be offended because heterosexual culture and practices is ‘who they are.’

    I feel like you don’t have these sorts of problems if sexuality is conceived as, not something people are, but something that people do.”

    Word.

    http://mechantechatonne.wordpress.com/2011/11/25/archetypes-and-identity-politics/

  67. Also, Cherry, after reading through the other comments, I wanted to say that I’m glad you’re OK, after whatever it was that happened to you. If anyone can survive and thrive, I’m sure you can. ❤

    I have a question for all you intelligent ladies, whoever would like to answer. It might seem a bit off-topic, but it's something that was discussed in this thread and that is often discussed on this blog. OK, you all are talking about living in a world without men, right? Well, that sounds great for a lot of reasons, but also somewhat unrealistic for obvious reasons. Even if we could reproduce without men, we would still have to succeed in phasing them all out somehow, and men seem pretty intent on existing. I'm not saying that it's a "wrong" point of view, because it actually does make sense to me, but it's indeed a very radical point of view that most people, male or female, would not sympathize with. To most people, the idea of completely eradicating men would just sound downright demonic. They wouldn't understand it. And in the past, I wouldn't have been able to understand it either.

    BUT, that's really not the point. My question is actually this: Do you think it's true that we used to live in matriarchal societies in which women were basically in charge, and men worshiped The Goddess and honored women? Do you believe that there was ever a Golden Age of Matriarchy? Or do you believe that men have always dominated women, as we observe in so many lower primates? Or what exactly DO you believe? I'm curious about what you think in terms of how we developed in an evolutionary and historical sense.

    I actually tend to think that maybe we did used to live in a Matriarchy, because there's a lot of archeological evidence to support that theory. *IF* this is true, then it actually is possible to live in a world with men in which men don't dominate women. Just a thought. If such a world existed before, then such a world could exist again.

    Now, I completely agree with the vampire theory, and I've been saying the same thing myself for a while now. In fact, it's really good to hear other women saying the same thing, because I thought I was the only one who felt this way. It's clearly obvious that the collective male soul is feeding on the collective female soul in a vampiric type of way, and things like the porn industry are basically massive Satanic black rituals for inducing that. I see that. And it makes sense to me that women are really the primary source of life energy, because we are the ones who give birth. Ergo, it makes sense that men used to worship women and that their worship later turned into hatred and domination.

    What I'm wondering is, would it possible to return to Matriarchy, a time when women were honored as the center of life and men had to respect us in order to bask in our glow? I'm just wondering, because I actually know a few men who kind of dig the idea of Matriarchy. Think about it: What every man wants is to be taken care of by a Mother. A Matriarchy would be much better for EVERYBODY, including men. We would get rid of violence, war, environmental destruction, etc. We would create peace and abundance on earth. A lot of men KNOW this, but they're afraid to let us have power because they fear retribution for all the things they've done to us. But the Mother always forgives and loves her children, and men know this too. So what if we actually started advocating the idea of Matriarchy? Like seriously for real? Do you think we actually pitch that, to both men and women, and get people genuinely interested in the idea? It's just a thought.

    Anyway, sorry for HUGE BLOCKS OF TEXT, but I guess I had to lot to say/quote. I hope to hear you thoughts on this. ❤

  68. My question is actually this: Do you think it’s true that we used to live in matriarchal societies in which women were basically in charge, and men worshiped The Goddess and honored women? Do you believe that there was ever a Golden Age of Matriarchy? Or do you believe that men have always dominated women, as we observe in so many lower primates? Or what exactly DO you believe?

    No I don’t believe men ever really worshiped women as equals (logically anybody above you can’t be your equal) and since there’s no actual proof that men were egalitarian, I wonder what motivates feminists regarding their assumption that such a golden age ever existed. More likely, women noticed that their menstruation cycles occurred the same time each month relative to the full moon, and women learned to count that way. And then shared their knowledge with men. Testosterone does indeed affect the way people process information. The more T someone has the more likely they are to think like this: “A causes B. Done!” But a woman is more likely to think this way: “A causes B causes C causes D causes E causes F. Still not done!” So it was probably women who discovered that a vine from a tree attached to a stick could catch dinner from a river. You think a bunch of cavedoods are going to worship women for being superior or beat them into submission as a result of their own insecurity?

  69. Put another way. Many people have rubber duckies in their bathrooms. woo woo. A thousand years from now, anthropologists are going to find all those rubber duckies and assume we worship ducks and assume we treated ducks with the utmost respect. My point being, the mere presence of a totem does not mean that contemporary anthropologists know for sure the exact purpose of the totem and under what circumstance it was “worshiped”. People seriously suck at logic and assume all kinds of crap.

    Think about childbirth from an idiot cave person’s perspective for a change. Cave people had no concept of science, they worshiped the freaking sun as if it was a person for crying out loud. Childbirth was a very big deal to them and it was completely mysterious. The only thing they knew for sure (at first anyway) was that a woman’s belly got big and then a baby came out. Of course they would be utterly fascinated by the vagina and womb etc, which is why they drew pictures of it all over the place. But the presence of cave pictures depicting vaginas didn’t mean men were egalitarian, hello. Again, most people suck at basic logic — and godfuckingdamnit do I find this trait tiring to watch.

  70. Thanks for your reply. Yeah, I actually do understand and agree with a lot of what you’re saying. And there’s a lot that we don’t know. But I think evidence does show that the first deities were female, which makes sense since women gave birth and birth was a mysterious thing to them, as you said. Not to say that males literally worshiped human women, but just that religion/spirituality has always been a huge organizating factor in society (thought maybe it shouldn’t be so much) and I’m convinced based on things I’ve read that the Venus statues found all over the world, for example, that long pre-date any depiction of a male god, were more than just “fertility symbols” as some male scholars have tried to dismiss them as. The book I read that really convinced me of that was “The Underside of History” by Elise Boulding. The way she put it, calling the Venus statues fertility charms would be like calling a crucifix a good luck charm. She points out the sheer prevalence of these little statues found all around the world, and they’re basically the oldest artifacts, older than weapons and tools. But I don’t think we can really know for sure what the pre-historic world was like or how the pre-historic mind operated. All we can do is look at artifacts and compare them to what we know about society in history. But yeah, as I said, the males are quite brutal toward the females in *most* lower primate species, so yeah, I can see what you’re saying too, definitely. Ah fuck it, let’s just get rid of all the m en and be done with it. Lol. 😀

  71. There are probably five billion rubber duckies in existence. Clearly, the preponderance of rubber duckies is proof that we worship rubber duckies as our spiritual advisor.

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