A Gentleman's Guide

AUGUST | 2018

AUGUST | 2018 | ESSENTIALS

STRIDES OF PRIDE

 

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Being sexually authentic is a birthright that many of us are shy about claiming. When many of us  were younger, we hid our sexual desires and the bulk of our sexuality out of a fear that we wouldn’t be accepted by society, our families, and friends. We suppressed our feelings and desires either because we were masochistic or because we convinced ourselves that they’d eventually fade. Those who can relate to these things can attest to the feeling of having their sexuality oppressed from the outside while sexually repressing themselves on the inside. There are just as many reasons for these things as there are ways that we can repair the internal damages we’ve done to ourselves and heal from the trauma caused by others.

Let’s start with the difference between sex and sexuality. Sex is, well, sex. Its that thing you and your Beaux (or your heaux-- we’re never here to judge) do with each other whenever the occasion calls. Consensual sex is purely physical and involves the penetration of an orifice...or two...or three depending on, well… never mind. While we only have sex for pleasure, our heterosexual friends have sex for pleasure and *cringe* reproduction.

Sexuality, on the other hand, is less physical. It’s the way we express ourselves with style, mannerisms, and demeanors. It's who we’re attracted to, our gender identity and the ways we shape our sexual selves. Sexuality is our non physical way of expressing the way we experience ourselves while sex is the way we physically express the way we feel about our Beauxs.

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As boys we were taught about what it took to be a man. Men didn’t cry, wear makeup or indulge in mani-pedi specials at the nail shop. We were advised against wearing perfume and, once upon a time, we were shamed if we had both ears pierced. The list of the dos and don’ts of masculinity is still growing as we’ve recently been informed that our heterosexual brothers have now been banned from eating whole bananas -that they must cut them up into small pieces to avoid being seen consuming the phallic fruit. Everything we just mentioned, with the exception of banana eating, is linked to sexuality.

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As we made the transition from boys to men, we learned about sex. Some of us learned a little sooner than that, but whatever. We were subconsciously educated on dominance and masculinity, how to feign aggression, how not to smile in pictures. and on how to treat women as conquests and property. Luckily for most of us that last lesson would never apply because…”women”. We grew to accept these gendered attitudes as the norm, which, for some of us, only served to stunt our sexual growth.

But why are sexual oppression and sexual repression a even a thing?  The reasons for both can be found in religion. As much as we’d like to dive head first into this, its something we’ve already touched on, so the only thing we’ll say is that we’re wrong if we thing traditional Jesus is a fan of premarital sex.

Healing from the ways we’ve repressed our sexuality isn’t an easy feat. The first obstacle we must overcome to accomplish this is to find satisfaction with who are and to let go of who we’ve been told to be. This can be a long process, so we’ll need to exercise a little patience with this. This is a process known by many as circuit breaking and its exactly what it sounds like. Circuit breaking is essentially breaking the connection we have between whatever it is that lead us to repressing our sexuality. If we cut the serpent’s head, it’ll die. Trust us on this.

Regardless of how hippy-dippy it sounds, we are our own Gods. We’ve got to remember our divinity. We do this by regaining control of our lives and by taking actions that make us comfortable. We do this by freeing every piece of our sexuality we’ve imprisoned. If you’ve repressed your desire to play with gender roles, rebel with some of Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty! If you’re tired of trying to breathe through that mask of masculinity, take it off and do something so completely fem that it’ll make your would be judges sick to their judgmental ass stomachs. Through this we can explore all the things we’ve been afraid to explore, and we’ll be better off for it. Fuck it up, sis.

Sexual oppression hasn’t always been exclusively reserved for women. Same gender loving men experience sexual oppression as well. Sexual oppression is them telling us what we can and can’t or should and shouldn’t do with our bodies.  As children we were taught to avoid to “loose” girls, that our body counts should be kept low so that our values are kept high and that God isn’t here for promiscuity- but the incest between the children of Adam and Eve was perfectly acceptable.

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We hold these truths to be self-evident, to the point that they become our reality. And while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with chastity, it should be a choice we’re allowed to make on our own. We fight sexual oppression the same way we fight any other oppressive force- through resistance.  Being sexually free is nothing any of us should be ashamed of so we’ve got to let go of any judgment attached to the idea. It's not about being a heaux or a prude; it’s about knowing what it is you want out of life. It's about owning and accepting the potential consequences. Remember, our oppressors our not fucking, feeding or financing our lives and shouldn’t be given such control over the decisions we make with and for our bodies.

Many of you reading this may be of a particular age, an age where there was no greater time than the ‘90, Nickelodeon, flip phones, and Family Matters. That was such a different time and while it was an era, it wasn’t an era of sex. It isn’t really surprising that those of us who grew up within that time period felt the sting of sexual oppression and regression, but lucky for us the times, and attitudes, have changed.  

We see this in the media, in the dwindling numbers of those who identify as being religious and in the way that the ‘walk of shame’ has evolved into the ‘stride of pride’. We exist in an age where our sex and sexuallity have become less taboo and more widely accepted. So whether you’re a sexually conservative Beaux or a liberal one, focus on doing the speed limit in the lane you’re in and let the other drivers do whatever it is they choose to. Our goal should be to live our best lives and not to infringe on the lives.

Remember this, always.

Jeremy Carter