In hookups, inequality still reigns.

Here’s the deal. A NY Times article talks about how more young women are willingly taking part in hook-ups. But then, they go on to report, many times women aren’t comfortable asking for what they want. As a result, often they get no pleasure or they don’t have an orgasm. Oddly, the article then says: “well, maybe it’s not all about orgasm.” Say what??? Okay, I get it if a woman wants to have sex, enjoys it and then doesn’t have an orgasm. But I don’t get it if a woman WANTS to have an orgasm, can have an orgasm and doesn’t have one (or come close) because she is not comfortable communicating the technical details.

Would we say that it was okay to have a hook-up where the woman gets exactly what she wants, say oral sex, and then has an orgasm and rolls over and goes to sleep? No chance. The reverse isn’t okay either. Essentially, what we have to tell girls is, “If you are going to hook-up, you need to learn to talk about what you want.” (Ironically when I speak to teens about hooking up, I invariably end up saying something like ‘if you can’t talk about it, you probably shouldn’t be doing it.’) So the conversation might be….“Hey, can you use your hand here, so that I can come too?” Another suggestion is to use your own hand during intercourse or after intercourse and tell him where you want to be kissed and how.

Hooking up can be complicated. Women and men need to understand that their actions always have ramifications. Always. Sometimes the ramifications are minor and sometimes more major, and sometimes they are good and sometimes they are not. But there are always ramifications. That’s okay as long as you’ve gone into a situation with your eyes open and you can make a thoughtful decision. But, suggesting that young women go into a situation where they can’t speak up and define their needs, and suggesting that is acceptable, that strikes me as…just plain creepy. And somewhat irresponsible.

So I say, hook up if you want to. But make sure you go in with your eyes wide open, you are clear what your goals are and you can speak up for yourself.

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