Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Why You're Not Married...yet: chapter 3 (you're a slut)

author Tracy McMillan.
It's the third installment of our BLOW OFF book club! Don't fret if you still haven't had time to get Tracy McMillan's book Why You're Not Married...Yet, we're only on page 67. There's still time to catch up! This week, we're focusing on the chapter entitled: YOU'RE A SLUT. This is going to be a good one.

A Single Girl's Perspective (20 LA Wannabe)
When I first saw the title of this chapter I thought it was going to be a lot of “nobody’s gonna buy the cow when they get the milk for free,” type of talk. And while there’s a little bit of that , it’s more in the form of “if you’re having great sex with a guy, it won’t turn him into your man”. We all know this, of course, but I think sometimes we choose to ignore it and think we are the one person that can change these circumstances. Instead of this being a chapter on how having sex with people you’re not in a relationship is “bad” or how you will get a reputation, McMillan offers us reasons why casual sex is not serving us if we are looking for a relationship.

But let me back up first. What exactly is slutty when you’re not in a relationship? I think everyone has a different answer for this. I mean, if you’ve been out of a relationship for a while it’s inevitable that you’re going to end up sleeping with someone (or multiple people) at some point, that you’re not in a relationship with. Sex relieves stress and tension and sometimes we just need it to continue living our lives. McMillan doesn’t so much try to tell us what she defines as slutty, but tries to educate us on casual sex.

You’re thinking, it’s fine. I can handle casual sex. I know what the deal is. But McMillan points out that sex and chemistry bond two human beings. So you tend to keep going back to that person because you already have a bond. This can be problematic for two reasons.

1) You could go all Cameron Diaz in Vanilla Sky. You might end up wanting more or being hurt if you find out they are dating or doing someone else. “When you sleep with someone your body makes a promise…” If you’re not careful you could go cray and drive you both off either an emotional or physical cliff. No bueno.
 2) Keeping someone in your life in that capacity doesn’t leave room for another man in your life. A man that wants to commit to you. When you fill up space with something mediocre, good, better things don’t have room to enter.

I agree with McMillan on both of those points and likes that she takes a spiritual approach instead of flat out calling women sluts. You have to clean out your closet before you can go shopping. Same theory here. In case you’re confused if you are actually in a relationship with someone you’re sleeping with she gives us the cold hard truth. If you have to ask if you’re in a relationship, you’re not. A tough pill to swallow but if us single ladies didn’t need advice we wouldn’t be reading this book.

Her advice? STOP DEALING WITH UNAVAILABLE MEN. Don’t settle for a guy that won’t commit to you. You’re worth being committed to. And how does she suggest we fill the void? By developing a sexual relationship with ourselves. Oh, yeah! I think we’re up for that challenge ladies!

A Married Girl's Perspective (Saaara)
So, the gist of this chapter is that you shouldn't waste your time having casual sex with a guy that's never going to settle down with you BECAUSE you'll be missing out on all the other guys who actually want to date you. The scariest part of this chapter was when McMillan said the ages of 32-37 go faster than any other period in your life. Shit. I'm thirty-two now, but by the time I finish this post, I might be 37. Back to the slut stuff: McMillan points out that men don't fall in love with their penises. Which basically means they could bone you till the end of time and still not fall for you. So, when a guy gets into a committed relationship, it's a decision on his part. He decides he's ready for one and allows himself to fall. Women are different. We bond more quickly. We're not as good at casual sex.

I kind of agree with this. My husband was twenty-eight when we first started dating. He had friends that were starting to get engaged or married. His sister had just gotten married. He was ready and made the decision to get into a relationship. He wouldn't have made the same decision, say, three years earlier. That said...our relationship started as a one weekend stand. We were on the same business trip in Florida. I lived in LA, he lived in NY. And we spent the weekend together (in my hotel room). I'll admit, the reason I hooked up with him so fast was that I didn't think I was ever going to see him again (not slutty at all, right?) In hindsight, it would have been great if our relationship started off more slowly, but I think the reason it worked out was because we went into it thinking that it could never work. We lived on opposite coasts. We had no choice but to start things off on a casual note, which took a lot of the pressure off. So, I guess what I'm trying to say is if McMillan's book came out in 2005 and I took her advice, I may not be married right now. 

Then, McMillan goes on some tangent about visiting a great guy friend in Rome who tells her she's captivating. Um, side note: not sure how this has anything to do with the "you're a slut" chapter. I think she just wanted to tell us that she's captivating.

One of the pieces of advice that I did appreciate in this chapter was McMillan's point that instead of filling the lonely gaps between relationships with hooks ups...just give in to the emptiness. And fulfill yourself sexually. She calls it being sexually independent, which I am all for. Start here, ladies. (Although, let's get real about masturbation-- sometimes it can make us feel like we don't need a guy for anything and sometimes it makes us feel that much lonelier). But McMillan also adds that men are more attracted to women who are content not being in a relationship. Totes agree.  I remember a guy friend told me that a girlfriend of mine was hot, but that he wasn't interested in her, because you could tell she was desperate to be in a relationship.

Last thing I would leave you with as a married girl reading this book: if you're still in your twenties, fuck this chapter. Go out and have all the safe sex you want. The one thing McMillan does not mention is that once you're married, you don't get to be a slut anymore. So, get boning! 

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