Sexual Morality and Ethics Catch-All

One thing that has always puzzled me, is where do we draw the line as far as sexual ethics. I assume that everyone would consider rapists or pedophiles to be wrong in their ethics, but is everything besides that okay?

I suppose one could say that everything that makes everyone involved feel loved and honored should be okay, but, since when do people know what they want? I have the nagging feeling that no matter what act people perform sexually, it will never be more fulfilling than "missionary, lights off and married" (sorry if that's not an exact quote), unless there is a deep emotional connection with that significant other. I'm not an expert on psychology, but I don't think having an orgasm is the only motive for sex. What if every sexual motive that we have, has its motives buried deep underneath or subconscious? Despite what that might entail, I'm not calling the desire for sex a bad thing because I believe most of our motives truly are good, like the need for intimacy, acceptance and reproduction; but, when those good motives aren't being met, is it possible that we try to find more intense methods of sex to deliver those needs that could be met by non-sexual ways? If I'm wrong, then why is having sex more preferred than finding the most intense orgasm through our own methods?

edit for better conclusion:I suppose that all this bantering is to say, we shouldn't allow sex to define us, but, should know ourselves and exactly what it is we are looking for before we engage in sex or more extreme sexual methods. That sexual conduct is wrong when we allow sexuality to determine how we act and our purpose in life as opposed to allowing sex to enhance our self awareness, joy and intimacy with ourselves and others.

FiveIron wrote:

edit for better conclusion:I suppose that all this bantering is to say, we shouldn't allow sex to define us, but, should know ourselves and exactly what it is we are looking for before we engage in sex or more extreme sexual methods. That sexual conduct is wrong when we allow sexuality to determine how we act and our purpose in life as opposed to allowing sex to enhance our self awareness, joy and intimacy with ourselves and others.

Why does there have to be one correct way? Why can't people have a multitude of different experiences and desires that satisfy different wants?

DanB wrote:
FiveIron wrote:

edit for better conclusion:I suppose that all this bantering is to say, we shouldn't allow sex to define us, but, should know ourselves and exactly what it is we are looking for before we engage in sex or more extreme sexual methods. That sexual conduct is wrong when we allow sexuality to determine how we act and our purpose in life as opposed to allowing sex to enhance our self awareness, joy and intimacy with ourselves and others.

Why does there have to be one correct way? Why can't people have a multitude of different experiences and desires that satisfy different wants?

I guess I should clarify a few things. For one, I don't believe that there is a more prevalent desire for sex other than the need for intimacy. That in all our ambition and experimentation, what we are looking for isn't merely a heightened sense of pleasure, but the attempt to find our preconception of it. And I don't think there is one correct way. I believe that playfulness and experimentation are a part of a intimate relationship. That being said, I don't think there is a limit to what is acceptable and good. The main point that i was trying to get across was that the proof is in the results. If someone can increase their happiness, productivity and mental awareness through sex, then they must be doing it right.

please understand that I in no means want to condemn peoples sexual preferences, I just think people should really consider their motives and self awareness before they try something that might make them more distant or unappreciated (whatever that may be). Different things are appropriate in different relationships, but I'm not sure everything is right in every relationship.

FiveIron wrote:

One thing that has always puzzled me, is where do we draw the line as far as sexual ethics. I assume that everyone would consider rapists or pedophiles to be wrong in their ethics, but is everything besides that okay?

Not sure how much of the thread you've actually read, since nobody has said that everything apart from rape or pedophilia is okay (or moral/ethical, to keep the focus on the thread topic).

To reiterate my earlier position:
the moral / ethical boundaries for sex are tightly bound to consent. If everyone involved is consenting to what's happening, there is no moral or ethical issue in play.

Pre-empting likely objections:

* Rape is obviously non-consensual.
* Society recognizes that children are incapable of meaningful consent in the same way that adults are, so pedophilia is also off the table.
* Infidelity (sex with someone else when your partner isn't aware / okay of what's happening) is also morally / ethically wrong because your partner isn't consenting to what's going on.

Anything else (as long as it involves informed consent from everyone involved) is pretty much fair play - even things that I find distasteful or personally nauseating.

Dimmerswitch wrote:

Anything else (as long as it involves informed consent from everyone involved) is pretty much fair play - even things that I find distasteful or personally nauseating.

Two girls, one toboggan?

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One interesting question about relationship ethics that I hadn't thought about until recently: What ought a trans person do when beginning to see someone, or becoming more serious with someone? There are a lot of obvious problems with not being open about your past. But, at the same time, you're not trying to find someone to date your past self. There's a sense of betrayal that the other person can feel about not being told in the first place. But talking about things up front brings the expectation of outright rejection on the basis of "not being real" without even giving things a chance, or worse, an extremely negative and possibly violent reaction.

An additional complication comes from the fact that many trans people don't want to have "TRANS" stuck to their identity for the rest of their lives—as far as they're concerned, they're just a man or a woman—and having an expectation that not introducing yourself by leading with "I'm transsexual" might count as a betrayal is just a mess. (Consider also: If you're actively seeking someone to date, it might make sense to always share that information before even meeting, although the problems above apply. But what if you meet someone socially or professionally, and hit it off and a romance starts to bloom? At what point should you disclose things?)

And as a final giant complication: There are "tranny chasers" out there who actively seek out trans people to have sex with. The attentions of chasers are generally not appreciated by trans people, because of the horrible objectifiction involved. I also suspect that some chasers take advantage of the vulnerability of trans people, making the consensuality suspect in some cases. This makes problems elsewhere, too, because openly sharing your trans status potentially makes you the target of such people—and because if you do meet someone who knows of your trans status but appears to be interested anyway, you kind of have to wonder. (Similar to the "there are so many misogynist assholes out there that women have to be on guard all the time, even against people who probably aren't like that" problem.)

The most interesting ethical questions arise when two conflicting interests come together (a cis person who would rather not date a trans person, a trans person who would rather not be treated as different). And the hardest ethical questions are those for which there is no traditional solution. Every case must be taken individually, and what works for one set of people might not work at all for another set.

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Back on the more common side of things: I think that when you have mutually consenting people, as Dimmer says, there's very little you can say other than "different strokes for different folks." I'd probably add a point that it's important to be careful about external power dynamics, and the impact that can have on consensuality. (This is why things like relationships in the chain of command or between professionals and clients, managers and subordinates, or students and teachers are worth being [em]careful[/em] about.)

To step back a little bit to the recent question that revived this thread: When someone has desires to do things that their partner is not interested in, but still loves that person very much, and doesn't feel compelled to act those fantasies out... that seems perfectly reasonable to me. I think that it's probably safer and healthier to share those fantasies with your partner(s) rather than assuming there can't be consent. You never know. As an example: I'm a bit of a masochist, and had a girlfriend who was willing to experiment with that. She found inflicting pain to be enough of a turn-off that it didn't really work for her, so we stopped. If I hadn't shared that with her, we wouldn't have tried it and figured out what our boundaries were. But it didn't have to be a deal-breaker, and it wasn't.

Still, people can be really embarrassed by their fantasies and feel like they're unsharable. I think that's sad, and that the right solution is just to make sure people are comfortable sharing things with people they become serious about. If I'd been in that woman's position, I would mainly feel betrayed in the lack of sharing, rather than in the fantasies themselves.

Dimmerswitch wrote:
FiveIron wrote:

One thing that has always puzzled me, is where do we draw the line as far as sexual ethics. I assume that everyone would consider rapists or pedophiles to be wrong in their ethics, but is everything besides that okay?

Not sure how much of the thread you've actually read, since nobody has said that everything apart from rape or pedophilia is okay (or moral/ethical, to keep the focus on the thread topic).

To reiterate my earlier position:
the moral / ethical boundaries for sex are tightly bound to consent. If everyone involved is consenting to what's happening, there is no moral or ethical issue in play.

Pre-empting likely objections:

* Rape is obviously non-consensual.
* Society recognizes that children are incapable of meaningful consent in the same way that adults are, so pedophilia is also off the table.
* Infidelity (sex with someone else when your partner isn't aware / okay of what's happening) is also morally / ethically wrong because your partner isn't consenting to what's going on.

Anything else (as long as it involves informed consent from everyone involved) is pretty much fair play - even things that I find distasteful or personally nauseating.

Yes I read the majority of the posts (sorry if i restated a few things), but i wanted to bring the perspective of personal mental health to the table since the majority of the forum has been directed at others emotional/physical health as opposed to personal well being. I agree with your three moral directives, but I want to explain that personal well being should also be a huge moral guideline. If ones current sexual behavior is turning them further into a introvert, eroding their self confidence and making them feel more isolated; couldn't that hint that something is wrong with how they are behaving? In fact, I believe that this method could be used to determine all ethics. just a hunch, but, If someone can acknowledge every mental impact that happens during sex, I think that we would be much more clear about what should be perused in our sex lives and what not. If a man commits rape it obviously hurts his victim, in more ways then most can comprehend, but would it be reasonable to assume that the rapist is also harmed by committing their act? The general stories that I have heard about rape, is that the rapist develops a stronger hatred towards the victim which might indicate the rapists disgust with himself, for committing the act, and dissatisfaction from the victim for not getting what the rapist truly wants from them.

I think that the discussion of the mental and emotional aspects of sex is certainly needed and appropriate but a bit overstated.

As my uncle Joe used to say: "A stiff prick has no conscience."

If you are so addicted to porn that it is having a detrimental effect on your personal wellbeing I'm not so sure that the issue is sexual at all. Likewise rape is not a sex act. The discussion of rape doesn't really belong in a discussion of sexual morality because rape is not about sex. People don't become rapists because they are horny they become rapists because...well... they're rapists. Listing rape as a sexual kink does it a disservice.

I think there is a definite blurring of the lines here between (I'm making these terms up): mechanical sexuality and behavioral sexuality.

Sometimes sex is indeed that thoughful. BDSM is an example where you can have power dynamics and fetishes that play upon our psychology to heighten sexual pleasure. THat said, it is possible and even commonplace for people in a BDSM relationship to not always have intercourse together. The act of dominance/submission is hardcoded into us to have an effect. Power play and sado-masochism amount to brain-f*cking, not body-f*cking.

A rapist has about as much connection to rape fantasies as a killer does to Dexter. Entertaining thoughts of something and doing it are quite different and NOT an indication that the person is likely to act on those thoughts. We all indulge in power fantasy all the time in video games. How many pixels have we murdered? How many games have elicited a low level of arousal from us? More than most would care to admit, likely. Saying that rape fantasies lead to rape I liken to the "violent" video game debate. Nobody killed because a game told them to. A rapist is no different. They were born (or were traumatized) to the point where something is functionally wrong with them. This doesn't excuse their actions, an evil act is evil.

This is kind of all over the place but what I'm trying to say is that sometimes sex is just sex. Yes their are emotional aspects and mental aspects but as much as you may like to tell yourself that you put on your top hat and monocle before every masturbation session I bet a lot of the time you just want to get busy.

There are moments when we indulge our brain with romatic candlelight meals and soapy baths and Barry White albums and there are times when you wake up with a boner and, hey look at that, you have a handy member of your preferred gender next to you in bed! Only 15 minutes before you have to get ready for work but hey...we can do this with some team work!

Talking about sex is one thing. Talking about our MOTIVATIONS behind sex is entirely different.

FiveIron wrote:

If ones current sexual behavior is turning them further into a introvert, eroding their self confidence and making them feel more isolated; couldn't that hint that something is wrong with how they are behaving? In fact, I believe that this method could be used to determine all ethics.

That's sort of the thing, isn't it? That general a test is true for any recreational activity. Whether it's stamp collecting or doing Ironman events, if it's resulting in something like eroding your self-confidence, you should stop.

The issue as I see it is that being turned on/experiencing sexual satisfaction is so much more subjective than any other activity. No one has their most intense orgasms from being charged usurious fees, so we don't consider mutual consent the standard for behavior in finance. No one gets hardest when their friend wears a Star Trek skirt to hang out (and if they do, that's more than just friendship) so we don't consider it right for one friend to tell another friend what to wear beyond well-intentioned advice given in good faith. So there's a lot less room to come up with some objective, universal rules beyond "if you're both consenting and of the appropriate age." It's almost more like telling people what kind of music they should allow themselves to listen to. Or that they shouldn't put ketchup on a hot dog.

Hypatian wrote:

One interesting question about relationship ethics that I hadn't thought about until recently: What ought a trans person do when beginning to see someone, or becoming more serious with someone? There are a lot of obvious problems with not being open about your past. But, at the same time, you're not trying to find someone to date your past self. There's a sense of betrayal that the other person can feel about not being told in the first place. But talking about things up front brings the expectation of outright rejection on the basis of "not being real" without even giving things a chance, or worse, an extremely negative and possibly violent reaction.

So, I'm only speaking from a personal perspective here, but I'd like to know as early as possible. Why? Because otherwise, when I do find out, it's going to feel like there's potentially been deception going on.

Aren't there questions of attraction tied up in it too? I'd hazard a guess that the world is awash with people who would be attracted to a cis-woman but might be less attracted to a trans-woman, either due to transphobia, fear of the unknown, or simply a genuine preference for cis-women. Would it be fair to suggest that you might be saving yourself wasted time and effort, and potentially some heartache by disclosing earlier to see if that's going to be an issue?

True. Aside from all of the other issues I mentioned. In a perfect world, it would be easy.

But, in most of the U.S. you can legally and openly be discriminated against for being transgender... and that makes it a bit scarier. I didn't really touch on this. The bad reaction scenario could result, even without direct violence, in being outed... and that could lose you your home or your job. I'm not sure it's fair for someone to have to expose themselves to that kind of risk before they even know if they like the other person. So you have a balance there.

"As early as possible." When is that? Is it the moment you arrange a date? Is it after a couple of dates, when you're definitely starting to hit it off? Does that change, depending on how secure your situation is? Will your partner understand your need to conceal this information to protect yourself until you were sure, or will it make things worse?

Complicated.

Hypatian wrote:

"As early as possible." When is that? Is it the moment you arrange a date? Is it after a couple of dates, when you're definitely starting to hit it off? Does that change, depending on how secure your situation is? Will your partner understand your need to conceal this information to protect yourself until you were sure, or will it make things worse?

Complicated.

Absolutely take your points about it being complicated, and again, remember, I'm only really approaching this from the point of view of the person you're dating, so I'm not really considering the implications of outing yourself.

I'd say that "as early as possible" is probable going to mean "by the third date", in that if you're going on a third date, it's probably safe to say that you're both interested in each other, and are vaguely planning on further dates beyond that. At that point, I'd prefer for cards to be laid on the table, in the spirit of "hey, I really like you, and I should be honest with you about something that may effect our ability to form an ongoing relationship."

Personally I look at it as the same as any large, complicated, truly life changing experience that you probably don't want to talk about: You never have to talk about it if you don't want to, but probably should before things get too serious.

Basically:
Never for short term / just for fun relationships
Eventually if a short term relationship develops into something more or something complicated
Maybe within a month or two if the relationship looks serious right from the get go (and by looks serious I can assume the person is a good caring person because you are already interested in them).

Yup. Mainly brought it up because I think it's an interesting problem and highlights how things can be difficult in situations where there isn't any well-developed social norm. Personally, I've never really "dated" in that sort of way, so it's very much a thought experiment for me.

jdzappa wrote:

and as Dan points out in his podcast male fantasies tend to be a lot darker or at least more embarassing than female fantasies.

I don't think that's necessarily true.

strangederby wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

and as Dan points out in his podcast male fantasies tend to be a lot darker or at least more embarassing than female fantasies.

I don't think that's necessarily true.

I can promise you that's not necessarily true.

trichy wrote:
strangederby wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

and as Dan points out in his podcast male fantasies tend to be a lot darker or at least more embarassing than female fantasies.

I don't think that's necessarily true.

I can promise you that's not necessarily true.

wait, are you saying that woman actually want to have sex?

But seriously, I think that it comes across that men have more fantasies because they are much louder about it. What I've observed is that women typically only express sexual desires to their most intimate friends or partners.

FiveIron wrote:
trichy wrote:
strangederby wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

and as Dan points out in his podcast male fantasies tend to be a lot darker or at least more embarassing than female fantasies.

I don't think that's necessarily true.

I can promise you that's not necessarily true.

wait, are you saying that woman actually want to have sex?

But seriously, I think that it comes across that men have more fantasies because they are much louder about it. What I've observed is that women typically only express sexual desires to their most intimate friends or partners.

I must move in different social circles then.

I came across this year-old piece, but, apparently, these "purity balls" are still going strong.

The best adjective I can find for this is "creepy," IMO.

Young women and girls are dressed in ballgowns, their hair professionally done. They pose with their fathers under white arches decorated with flowers, like prom dates. And the midst of all this revelry, they promise to remain virgins and their fathers, in turn, pledge to be the protector of that “purity.” Some are given rings—it reminds me of a wedding ceremony.

...

The Wilsons claim to be offering an antidote to the hypersexualized pop culture that targets young women—but by defining girls so concretely by their virginity, they’re ensuring that young women will continue to be judged by what they do or don’t do sexually. The women who take virginity pledges and go to purity balls are promising that their bodies aren’t their own, but instead belong to their fathers and future husbands.

A quick Google search for something more current turned up this Time.com photo essay from last weekend. The photos are really uncomfortable to look.

As Rubb Ed noted, many of the girls in these photos look terrified, sad, or miserable.

I cannot see the morality of these purity balls except for a cultural belief by religious conservatives that Daddy and Hubby know what best for the body of their little girl/wife.

The only thing missing is one of the fathers counseling his daughter that she will have to do her "wifely duties" when she marries, but she should close her eyes and think of England to make it all palatable.

Phoenix Rev:

There's an egalitarian manner to do that, but it involves both the young men and the young women pledging to virginity at the ball, not the young women alone. Generally, the tenor of it is that the young men, being assumed to be the sexual aggressors, to keep themselves in check and control themselves; and the young women, being assumed to be the ultimate gatekeepers, to make sure that the young men are kept in line.

The underlying morality in this milieu stresses the importance of the family unit as a core sociopolitical element (controlled by both partners) and maintains that limiting sexual contact even where it is inevitable is necessary for the control and quarantine of STDs.

I strongly think that this is not what that's all about, especially as it's a Father's Day event, which seems like a strange occasion in which to hold this sort of ball. It would be more appropriate in the summer or Valentine's.

LarryC wrote:

The underlying morality in this milieu stresses the importance of the family unit as a core sociopolitical element (controlled by both partners) and maintains that limiting sexual contact even where it is inevitable is necessary for the control and quarantine of STDs.

Except that abstinence only sex ed is a complete failure.

Not abstinence-only. Limited sexual contact where inevitable. That is, keep young folk busy with work they ought be doing to establish themselves in life, and if they really, really can't keep it in their pants, to make sure the sex is safe and with limited partners - ideally only one for an extended period.

Of course, this is founded on the family as the core sociopolitical unit - meaning that the family unit exercises significant control and oversight over everyone socially. So not only can you not have sex without letting your folks know about it - you're kind of obligated to tell them if you did, principally because they're going to sustain consequences from your actions.

Not going to be able to organize this into the succinct, killer post I'd want so I'm just going to spew a few things out.

The modern Purity ball in the US is completely about a specific sect of Christians, their desire for a specific type of family, the submission of women, the authority of men, and a general cultural paranoia. I know. I grew up in an extremely dense Purity Culture and was a true believer in it throughout my teens. In their view, God is the head of man, man is the head of woman and the household. Fathers are responsible for their daughters, and must be in submission to god. The women (in this case daughters) must be in submission to God but also to their Father, as submission to him is a way of showing submission to HIM. Daughters are seen as vulnerable, but also as easily falling into being temptresses who lead men astray. And after sex, they are tainted, they are "damaged goods". Oddly enough dudes rarely get the "damaged goods" label, but instead it is seen as them caving to their unfortunately dominant and sexually ravenous nature. Perhaps if they repent they may ask God to restore to them a "second, spiritual virginity", but she would still be expected to make confession of this to her parents and indeed to any man from the local church who wishes to marry her. The very mainstream church I was part of counseled men that had earlier slept with a woman who was to be married, that those men should go and seek the forgiveness of her fiance for taking something from him. And you'd give the kids (almost always girls) Purity Rings to remind them of their promise to God and His expectations that you remain Pure. Pure, not dirty. Whole, not broken. Men's retreats were largely about resisting temptation, usually to porn but often to just about anything sex-related. It was a measure of your ability to be a godly man, and indeed is tied to this pervasive veneration of masculinity. Sexual sin for men is seen as weakness, but it women it has an undertone of them becoming aggressors. Men are to be the aggressors. Women were to wait for the men to act. Men were to be leaders, to guard the hearts and purity of women. And so the girl's parents and especially their father would need to be involved right at the start, because we're essentially talking about a handing over of authority over this woman, changing the guard of to whom she owes her submission. Women are largely counseled to avoid clothing and behaviors that would cause other men to "stumble". "Are you leading their eyes to your body or towards God?" As a commitment to Kissing Dating Goodbye a lot of couples will have never really dated anyone else, but will ideally have married someone they grew up with in the local church. Several couples I knew swore off any physical contact or alone time until they were married, sharing their first kiss at the altar. There's nothing wrong with not dating or not having premarital physical contact or whatever, but the reasons for this are tied up in a massive web of incredibly ass-backward, oppressive sexism.

I could go on about a lot of this, but I'll leave it there because I've got years of anecdotes and doctrinal whatnot I could be spewing. These people aren't the Taliban or anything- they're normal, modern, somewhat conservative christians. With the legalism a lot of them also emphasize the grace of God. This is just how they view sex and gender. And a lot of us who eventually either left those churches or the faith altogether have a lot of stories about years of torment and guilt in the name of purity and submission. I certainly would have enjoyed high-school-me's inability to remain "pure" had I not been crushed about being "pure" in the first place.

Ugh, just that word. Pure. In this context it is so utterly, utterly gross.

ALSO:

Hey FiveIron! They were my favorite band for years. One of my old christian ska bands is thanked in the liner notes of All The Hype because we used to hang with them. *flexes incredibly niche coolness*

Wait, it says you've been here for a while. So either I've never seen you or I've probably written that exact same thing to you before.

St. Paul really did a job on the role of women in society with his doctrinal additions to Christianity. I honestly think Jesus was a lot more egalitarian, and Paul much, much more traditional. But then, I also think that Christianity would not have amounted to much if it gave women equal status to men as teachers, leaders of the community and such.

Different topic, but in the view of these Christians this isn't simply a Paul thing. Other than some egalitarian bits it's not like Jesus was agitating for female liberation, probably because he was thinking the world would end pretty soon. And the egalitarian things from the gospels are easily dealt by these christians with as men and women being equal in god's eyes, but having different roles. All of these people would likely consider themselves complimentarians. And then you throw in the old testament that, with a few notable exceptions, is pretty awful toward women and there's more than enough nonPaul to go around if you're looking for it, I know not all Christians read it this way, but some do and that's the doctrinal basis for this.

FiveIron wrote:
trichy wrote:
strangederby wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

and as Dan points out in his podcast male fantasies tend to be a lot darker or at least more embarassing than female fantasies.

I don't think that's necessarily true.

I can promise you that's not necessarily true.

wait, are you saying that woman actually want to have sex?

But seriously, I think that it comes across that men have more fantasies because they are much louder about it. What I've observed is that women typically only express sexual desires to their most intimate friends or partners.

I just realized I never responded to this, so let me briefly explain. I'm not saying women have a lower libido or that women never have kinky desires. I still stand by my assertion that more men than women have either really out there or potentially harmful fantasies. That's why there are way fewer women who get turned on by hardcore rape scenes, kiddie porn, tentacle hentai, necrophilia, bestiality, etc.

You need to visit tumblr, my friend.

I my mind informed consent is the ultimate barometer for morality. Even if it is as blatant and crass as, "do you mind if I grab your ass?" Freedom is the power to make a choice.

Who has the darker fantasies is ultimately irrelevant. The real question is which gender has the most freedom to choose and express their fantasies? Do male fantasies only appear darker, simply because it is more socially acceptable? Male fantasies certainly dominate porn.

The control centers in the brain for arousal and aggression are neighbors and is probably the scientific basis for why males respond that way. It's also suggested that the brain chemicals that cause arousal can have a tolerance built up which is why people who descend into porn addiction often need to seek out "harder core" porn to get the same sexual reaction. I would hypothesize that since men are more frequently the target of erotic advertising and messages that the perception that male fantasies are "darker" is more of an impact of that aspect of the culture rather than something innate in just belonging to a gender.

jdzappa wrote:

I just realized I never responded to this, so let me briefly explain. I'm not saying women have a lower libido or that women never have kinky desires. I still stand by my assertion that more men than women have either really out there or potentially harmful fantasies. That's why there are way fewer women who get turned on by hardcore rape scenes, kiddie porn, tentacle hentai, necrophilia, bestiality, etc.

Seems like something that would make an interesting research topic. I'd like to put real numbers to it and see how much these types of desires are correlated with other factors besides gender and sexual orientation.

All I can say here is that my experience says otherwise. I have several female friends who have shared some very dark fantasies. I think it might be that people's perception that men have darker fantasies may be biased by that old stereotype of men liking sex more.