The gender question

Sugar and Spice and all things nice… Slugs and Snails and puppy dogs tails

From day one we are all gendered, sorted and categorised…

All the boys fit neatly into one box – it’s blue, tough, and labelled football, beer and sexist jokes…

Whereas the girl box is pink and fluffy and full of dreams of ponies, men that will rescue them from towers and Jimmy Choo shoes…

Not only is the notion ridiculously sexist, patronising and gender phobic – but it also the root cause of many of the inequalities we have when it comes to sex and relationships.

The trouble is when it comes to gender we all get far too caught up in how we think we should behave, or how society decides we should think and act anyway… unfortunately it seems that many of our choices are dictated soley because of what equipment we may or may not have in our pants…

When it comes to sex there is this ridiculous double standard that if a girl sleeps around (or not even that – if she shows any interest in sex) she is a slag or a slapper – whereas for a guy’s it’s to be expected. As we all know guys are only interested in one thing and that’s sex – they aren’t interested in relationships or emotions or any of that nonsense…

For many people sex is still something that boys do to girls… what’s more ‘nice girls’ shouldn’t really think about sex… it’s just something that you do to get or keep a boyfriend. But enjoying or being into sex is a big no no….

Similarly there is huge pressure for guys too – ‘what you didn’t shag her…?! What’s wrong with you?!’

We’ve already spoken about the importance of the language we use to talk about sex and the messages it give out (not read it yet? click here its ace!)

But even when it comes to gay relationships, people are still obsessed with trying to make people fit the binaries of Girl/Boy – ‘so which one of you girls is the butch one?‘So who gives and which one takes it?’


Not only is this attitude extremely harmful and causes people a whole heap of unnecessary worry, but also it completely disregards anyone that doesn’t fit neatly into those pink and blue boxes – not only people who regard themselves as genderqueer or trans*, but also any guy who struggles with his feelings is left worrying if he’s a freak and any girl that gets turned on or likes the idea of sex must be a nympho or a slapper!

These kinds of attitudes get frustrating, but also it is very sad.

We had a letter in from a girl who was worried that she might be addicted to porn simply because she likes to masturbate and gets turned on watching films on her computer… read it here… The simple fact is, yes girls can and do masturbate. Girls can and do like watching porn – in fact research proves that women have a stronger physiological response to porn than men do (get more turned on by what they watch in simple terms) which throws the long held notion that men are more turned on by what they see firmly out the window. Women do want and can enjoy sex…. Get over it

Ever wondered why – if masturbation is like a Yorkie – just for boys, why do they sell sex toys and vibrators… think about it!

Equally we have letters from guys trying to work out what is wrong with them as they don’t feel ready for sex but want to stay in their relationship… here look … Again, the notion that as soon as a lad hits puberty he will be desperate to start waving his penis at everyone he goes out with desperate for sex is ridiculous. There are plenty of guys that like a cuddle, are soppy and romantic, and hate to break it to you – don’t want to get in your pants!

 gender gingerbread

Equally – just because you happen to be a guy that fancies other guys doesn’t mean you suddenly have to stop playing rugby and take up shopping instead. Stereotypes are just that stereotypes based on rubbish! Lesbians don’t all play golf and have hairy armpits….

And why we are on the topic of gender and being hairy – Girls are hairy too! Deal with it!

Ok… rant over….


© Going off the Rails 2014. Adapted from ‘Playing Downstairs’ by Jonny Hunt

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