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<anon I1="BLANK" I2="BLANK">Be Honest--You're Not That Into Him Either Raise Your Standards and Reach for the Love You Deserve Chapter One You're Not That Into Him Either, But You Slept With Him Anyway "Didn't your mother tell you that sex leads to things like dating?" -- Frasier Crane to Roz in an episode of Frasier Sex happens. It's out there, everywhere, and you probably don't have to look that hard to find it. Thanks to the Internet, you can even look for sex (or socks, or both at the same time) from the comfort of your own home. Yes, women today have more sexual freedom than ever before, and a lot of you are taking advantage of this right. You are sensual, confident, openminded, and prepared to go after what you want. And these instincts are not at odds with finding a man who will adore you. And in the best-case scenario, you may be having all this sex with a guy you really like and who likes you. If so, I hope you're screwing like it's prom night and falling madly in love! But this is not always the situation. Most of you are single or in that chaotic limbo state of existence we call "dating." But still you find yourself horny, or lonely, or in between boyfriends. So, what are your choices? Well, there's always Nick at Nite or your friendly neighborhood Rabbit but both of those get tiring, and after a while even the idea of a fresh set of Duracells starts to lose its luster. So, you call an ex or you go on a date and you meet a guy and soon enough you're sleeping with someone you know you are not really that into. Men do this all the time, of course, because, well, they're men. But women can do it as well, and it can be exciting and perhaps even satisfying so long as you're being honest about your motivations and what you're getting (or, more likely, not getting) out of the bargain. The Horny Girl "It sounds like a cliché, but I have needs as well. I get horny and I need to deal with it. And even when I know it's not the perfect situation, I sleep with guys I know I'm not into. Is it love? No. But at least it's another body." -- Karen, 33, advertising, Denver Karen's situation is quite common. I hear stories like hers all the time in my work. Female desire, from a purely physiological point of view, often outpaces that of males. Why? Well, as Hugh Hefner knows all too well, the female body is built for sex. A woman is like a sleek, turbocharged Maserati compared to her male Yugo counterpart. And what is the engine that drives this pimped-out ride? The clitoris, which has no purpose other than sexual pleasure. It comes factory-built with twice as many nerve endings as the male penis (about eight thousand in total), an enviable anatomical reality that gives rise to multiple orgasms. (Viva la vulva!) While guys are at their sexual best at about the time they can begin voting, women peak between their late twenties and early forties (among other proof points, women in their "sexual prime" report an increase in orgasms at these ages). While some of this can be attributed to hormonal changes, one major factor seems to be social conditioning. As women gain experience and self-confidence, they begin to feel more comfortable with themselves and their bodies. This in turn leads them to embrace erotic exploration as they discover their deeper sexual selves. It's your world, ladies; we men just write books telling you how best to have sex in it. Booty Call Nation "I knew Mark from my old job, and while I thought he was cute, he was just not relationship material. We met for a drink one night, and one thing led to another. And because I knew him, it felt sort of secure, and he became a fuck buddy -- nothing more. Men can do it, so why can't we?" -- Cathy, 33, music industry executive, Los Angeles Cathy's point is well taken. Not only does the current culture permit it, casual sex is encouraged these days. But when did the ball drop? While casual sex has been in existence since the beginning of time (remember Adam and Eve? the Roman orgies?), its genesis as an American cultural movement is often linked with the introduction of the birth control pill in the early 1960s, which helped catalyze the movement for sexual liberation. Women began embracing the power of their sexuality, and the feminist movement was as much about the right to proclaim pleasure as it was about equality elsewhere. No more would women accept sexless marriages and Victorian repression. (The vibrator was actually invented as a way of dealing with "female hysteria," which is what the Victorian medical establishment labeled female sexuality back then.) The swinging sixties gave way to the hedonistic seventies, when Erica Jong introduced the "Me Generation" to the "zipless fuck," and sex without guilt became an accepted form of female behavior. Women, it seemed, were finally on top, getting it on with anonymous strangers on trains and in elevators. And where were modern men during all of this? On the sidelines, gleefully embracing this newfound "empowerment," of course. Thanks to the seeds sown by the feminist movement, modern women were earning nearly as much as men by the 1990s, giving them unprecedented financial independence. Unburdened of the need to find a male provider, women were delaying marriage and enjoying dating as a form of sexual gratification. Enter Sex and the City, which exemplified a new form of empowerment: a woman's ability to have sex like a man: pleasure for the sake of pleasure. And, like Carrie and her cronies, a lot of women today find themselves sleeping with guys they were never really that into to begin with. Again, this world of booty calls and onenight stands is a fine state of affairs if you're getting something out of the deal. Just be aware of what that something is. Sex is more than just an accessory in your wardrobe -- a sheer Cosabella thong to be effortlessly slipped off before jumping into bed. The Lonely Heart/The Breakup Girl/ The In-Betweener "I guess I was looking for something that would take my mind off things. I figured sex might help." -- Marie, 34, dental hygienist, Cleveland Sometimes it is more than just a pure desire for sex that leads you to sleep with someone you are not that into. Sometimes you're just feeling lonely or in the throes of a recent breakup. Can sex help you get over someone else? Perhaps, though it can also make things worse. Can casual sex be a positive thing while you are waiting around for the love of your life to appear? Sure, as long as the casual sex is not keeping you from finding him or leaving you to confuse the in-betweener for the real thing. Women sleep with men for a variety of reasons that have little to do with their libido. If you're aware of this, great. Go for it. Just be prepared to deal with the consequences that may arise.But if you're looking to repair your self-esteem or exorcise the ghosts of boyfriends past through casual sex, you're probably setting yourself up for a disappointment. Giving Men What They Want "A dating world where I can meet attractive, smart women who are sexually aware and who will sleep with me even though they don't really want a relationship? Let me check. Ya, I think I might be able to deal with that." -- Adam, 32, lawyer, Birmingham (Michigan) While the conventional wisdom suggests otherwise, men are insecure and uncertain. Like women, we guys wonder whether you are into us, despite what certain books say. In He's Just Not That into You , the authors allude to the fact that if men can run the world, then they can call you first. Well, we're doing a fine job running things so far in this millennium, aren't we? And who are these men? I'm not quite sure myself. Most men I talk to are too preoccupied trying to understand the differences between Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis to run the world. Women get nervous but men do too. That time we never called you -- that might actually have been because we were confused -- did you even want us to call you in the first place? Even though we're unsure, the pressure is on men to make the first move or advance the ball. Men are more than content to accept a world where there is sexual equality and where women can take charge -- we just don't know how to handle it quite yet. The potential downside to a scenario where women are as aggressive as men, and where casual sex is an accepted norm, is that it essentially gives men license to be, well, men. The biggest beneficiary of this female empowerment is the male. This is not to say that women should play by certain "rules" or withhold sex. That does not work, and it's silly gamesmanship. Or is it? But on the flip side, you have to be aware that you might be contributing to the very situation that you often complain about: men who won't commit. We're not good on subtlety, especially when we're seeing a situation through testosterone-tinted glasses. This is not to say that all men are incommunicative jerks or that the only thing we want is casual sex. We probably won't turn down a noncommittal roll in the hay, but that doesn't mean we see it as the pinnacle of existence -- there is also baseball and beer, after all. Believe it or not, there are some guys who actually want to delay sex, especially with a woman they could potentially care about. And even when we're in situations that are casual, sometimes we're honest about that. It's not necessarily the case that a guy who says this is all he can handle is "not that into you." It's possible that, in fact, it's all he can handle, and if you both want to handle the same thing, i.e., casual sex (you go, girl!), perhaps it will be good for you too. Be Honest--You're Not That Into Him Either Raise Your Standards and Reach for the Love You Deserve . Copyright © by Ian Kerner. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from Be Honest - You're Not That into Him Either: Raise Your Standards and Reach for the Love You Deserve by Ian Kerner All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. 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Publishers Weekly Review
Hot on the heels of the bestseller He's Just Not That Into You comes this funny, forthright response from author and sex therapist Kerner. The author of the sex guide She Comes First and the "dating doctor" for Lifetime TV, Kerner takes up the cause of "Sex and the City" women everywhere, urging ladies to dump the "in-the-meantime" men and raise their standards on the husband hunt. Kerner's book will appeal to the chick lit audience, with his sassy quizzes and blunt language, as when he writes that women settle on a mediocre boyfriend because [they] like having [their] egos and (and lower parts) stroked. How unfortunate, then, that Kern's logic is often so sloppy. Can it really always be true, as he writes, that being married is harder than being single, even in the best of circumstances? or that If women were really disposed to have sex like men, [they'd be] greater consumers of porn and prostitution? The book equivocates in trying to promote sexual freedom while encouraging emotional responsibility, and all the laugh lines don't quite hide the fact that the entire book's wisdom is essentially contained in the subtitle. A final chapter, written jointly by Kerner and his wife, does stand out for its personality and wit. Here?s hoping they team up for a whole book next time. Meanwhile, this one?s sure to do brisk business among singletons. (Feb.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.