After gaining some awareness of the violence in intercourse, the ways it is used to harm women, the eroticization of this harm and therefore of intercourse, and the eroticization of a gendered power imbalance, I have had a shift in my attraction for men. That is, I have the attraction less (or “attraction” because I’m not sure it’s real attraction), and I also analyze it. Where in the past I might have got all “turned on” and “hot” to be in a man’s embrace, now it’s more like “I notice that I am in a very vulnerable position. Ah, blood seems to be flowing to my vagina, which has positive associations for me. I would very much like this man to satisfy himself on my body. Hm, I’m experiencing this encounter through his body instead of through my own, which is a kind of dissociation. Yeah, do it! I’m going to have a rape fantasy now…rape fantasies are fucked up. OK, men’s chests look weird.”
There’s this neighbor that I used to/occasionally have a crush on. These days it’s less “He looked at me, I’m palpitating!” and more “O hai asshole. I see you are hot today, aka you could overpower me. I’m going to think about you fucking me now. You jerk.” I go back and forth between thinking he’s gross and thinking he’s hot; it goes hand-in-hand with whether I’m subjectifying or objectifying myself that day. It’s an internal struggle between my feminist politics and my Stockholmed femininity, having the thoughts that I detest and simultaneously observing myself having those thoughts. Makes me feel dirty.
However. I do take it as a sign of progress when I can hear said hot neighbor having bed-shaking intercourse next door (the walls are thin), and all I think is how gross it is. You lose some, you win some.