Male enhancement commercials really bother me. And not just for the traditional reasons that you might expect, like how they inappropriately pop up on your screen when you’re innocently sitting in the afternoon watching TV or how creepy they are depicting a man with a monstrous smile surrounded by a bunch of googly-eyed women, and not even because of the male voice-overs that talk about how great they are when you’re in “the right mood” or for when you’re ready for some “adult intimacy.”
Yikes! And double Yikes. No, these are not the reasons that these commercials really bother me. And I am not the only one!
They bother me because they remind me of how much more importance society places on male sexual satisfaction than that of women. Our society spends millions of dollars on Viagra research and countless other millions on erectile dysfunction and other male sexuality satisfaction drugs. How much research do you think goes into female sexual satisfaction drugs? Just the question seems absurd.
And once we have these male satisfaction drugs, it’s a completely acceptable practice to advertise them on TV like they were gum! With no religious right objections or family decency group protests.
Now just imagine if there was a pill that would help women reach greater sexual satisfaction (with a caveat that if the satisfaction lasts more than four hours you should call you doctor…can you even imagine!)? And these were advertised at all hours on TV. Do you think that those commercials would raise controversy from the groups I listed above. You bet they would.
There are women in this country that are ostracized by their community or in extreme cases charged with a crime for selling “female sexuality products” like creams, lingerie, and other sexual enhancing products, to women in their own homes! They call it immoral and unseemly for women to do such things, selling such (in whispered tones) products.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not opposed to these medications for men. If it helps them, great! I understand that women are in great part the beneficiary of these. What I’m opposed to, however, is putting less value on the importance of women’s sexual satisfaction. For centuries, women’s sexual needs have been put in the shadows, ignored, even opposed. We have come a long way since then, but I don’t think we’ve gone all the way to true equality.
I have a problem. I have severe pool envy. I’m talking BAD. Especially on those hot days of summer, when you can see steam rising from the asphalt, I can’t think straight obsessing about my fantasy pool. I can almost taste the clean cold body of water. I walk around sweating in the hot sun and envy those lucky people that have a POOL! And I’m not talking about just any pool.
I’m talking about the people with huge luxuriously delicious pools right in their backyards (do the rich and famous call it a “backyard?”). I fantasize about them diving in and swimming from one end to the other, all underwater, and coming up to feel the coolness of the air on their wet faces! Can you see it? Oh, why can’t it be me!?
Well, for one reason, my backyard is the size of a postage stamp! There are ten other major reasons but the size pretty much puts the other reasons to shame. SO, today, instead of just reveling in my daily exercise of envy (which is not very productive apparently!), I decided to do something about it. I bought a small round blow-up pool.
I wasn’t sure that it could satisfy even the smallest part of my mammoth pool envy but I was willing to give it a shot. My husband and kids, who could care less about a pool, humored me and made a big deal about blowing up the pool and filling it with water.
We all put on our bathing suits and kept talking about the “pool” like it was an Olympic sized luxury pool on the French Riviera (the big plans after nap time…”hey kids, let’s all go to the pool!” and “let’s take drinks and snacks to the pool!”) And God bless those kids, they were so excited, jumping up and down like we were going to George Clooney’s pool in Como!
After a full day of hanging out in the teacup sized pool, splashing and playing with the kids, and laughing at our fun Riviera-inspired backyard, I realized, to my great surprise, that my pool envy had actually subsided (for the time being). So next time my envy takes hold, I’ll just blow up the pool and let the pretend Riviera feeling take hold!