This Sexual Chemistry Attraction Myth–the SCAM™, as I like to call it–encourages us to look outside of ourselves for situations and people who will guide us erotically, either through the power of their sexual magnetism or by mysteriously connecting us to our inner erotic command center. It’s a constellation of societally reinforced, limiting beliefs that sap a woman’s energy from her actual, here-and-now relationships. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking another person will “awaken” us erotically, like a priest or priestess plugging us into God.
The SCAM™ idealizes passivity. We come to depend on affirmation, reassurance, and praise to feel good about our sexual selves. Our healthy drive to create and generate who we are and what we want on our own behalf sputters and stalls when we’re saturated in the SCAM’s™ mythology. Particularly as girls and women, when we grow up in a culture that still encourages us to depend on external sources for “appropriate” sexual experiences, validation and approval, we get used to perpetually seeking someone else’s permission to come fully alive.
“How do I look?”
“How can I help?”
“When will you call?”
“Is everything okay?”
“So sorry, my fault.”
Wait and Sit Pretty
Even today, in what many might consider a far more progressive, post-feminist reality than we’ve ever had—at least in many parts of Europe and the U.S.—women wait. As girls. As adolescents. Women wait and sit pretty. It’s can become habitual. Women wait well past their wedding day, years into long-term, committed relationships. It’s a continuation of what women have been raised to do for much of their lives. Happily married, sexually-frustrated women wait for an external erotic catalyst to transform their experience of sex and their own sexuality. They hope their husbands or wives will figure out their bodies, their preferences, their desires. They hope their feelings will change. They distract themselves with work, babies, homemaking, underpaid careers, caretaking friends and family, navigating in-laws, secretly waiting their lives away. But waiting only leads to more waiting. It also leads to resentment and disconnection.
The Sexual Chemistry Attraction Myth is a modern chastity belt, though its reach goes far beyond whether or not a woman is sexually active. It puts a lock-down on women’s pleasure by paralyzing desire. A woman must wait for the right man or woman to act on her in some mysterious way she doesn’t understand and alchemize her erotic experience into something new, something more. The SCAM™ teaches women that they require another “special” person to unlock their erotic feminine essence. Rather than being a force within her, desire happens to her.
The Fine Print of Our Romantic Dreams
Like high fructose corn syrup, the Sexual Chemistry Attraction Myth is so common and ubiquitous we don’t always see it. It’s everywhere, hidden in the fine print of our romantic dreams, disappointments and expectations. We ingest it through stories, movies, song lyrics, gossip magazines, advertising, and social media. Even as adult women in secure, loving relationships, we often repeat and strengthen what we’ve been taught through our own self-talk. Turn the dial on the radio station in a woman’s head when she’s on an erotic escapade with her partner, and if she’s not feeling turned on, you might here this: What’s wrong with me? How come I’m not into this? Maybe I’m frigid or asexual. Why isn’t the love I feel for my husband/wife/girlfriend/boyfriend enough? What’s my erotic problem? Am I doomed?
We owe it to ourselves to undo the SCAM™ and fully own our sexuality.
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