Relationship Ramblings

Why are There More Negative Than Positive Words Associated With Sex?

Let’s talk trash.

I don’t mean the bags of junk we take out to the curb or to the Dumpster. I’m talking about the negative words that people use to describe sex – dirty, filthy, nasty and naughty – let alone five of the seven words you can’t say on television — fuck, cunt, cocksucker, motherfucker and tits (although there are some people who incorporate shit and piss into their sexual repertoires … not my thing).

Sex is the most exciting and exhilarating thing we can experience emotionally, mentally and physically. It’s how we create those adorable little things we call babies (even those who grow up to think and teach that sex a bad thing and spend their lives avoiding it like Catholic nuns and priests) and how we keep our species from becoming extinct. It releases endorphins, those “happy feeling” hormones. At its best, it’s an expression of love. When it’s a recreational activity between two consenting adults, it can be pretty awesome without regret if you can work it into your moral code.

Of course, there are people who will always give sex its most heinous connotations like rapists, pedophiles and pimps, not to mention the people who profit from the most degrading, but not necessarily illegal, depictions of sex. There are those who sell their bodies and those willing to pay for them. But what I’m getting at and trying to define isn’t even in the same ball park as those people and activities, let alone the same zip code or area code.

There are words like intercourse, copulation, coitus, congress and relations, but they’re so clinical and emotionally bankrupt. They sound like words used in technical manuals. Making love seems to imply only the most tender and romantic connotations of sex, but completely negates and avoids those primal and urgent drives and desires that are what the destination of sex is all about – orgasm and climax. Mating always makes me think of two lions climbing all over in the Savannah in an episode of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom. Then there are ordinary words like bang, bone, drill, grind, lay, nail, plow, poke, shag, screw and tap that are nothing more than silly euphemisms. Come on, people. It sounds like you’re building a house, not enjoying the touch of someone’s skin and the sight, sounds and sensations of arousal.

If only there was a middle ground between the shameful and degrading words, the words that make light of but still have a tint of shame to them, and the clinical terms. There aren’t many.

I haven’t even gotten to the words that describe and define genitalia. That’s another blog post of its own.

At best, beautiful is the most commonly used positive word to describe sex, but it’s such a vague and unimaginative word, like interesting and nice. Quite frankly, there are times I want it wild and raw, which some people see as offensive or shameful. In my life, eloquent and exquisite best describe sex, but that’s just the way we roll. I can’t speak for others. Hot? It should be, but that word is used so often that it has become a cliché. Pleasurable and comforting are words I think of when I think about the times I’ve shared with my lover naked in bed. Erotic is my favorite word of all, especially when I consider that what my lover and I share is nothing short of an artistic masterpiece. But what I’ve shared with most others hasn’t come close.

There are times when I’ll tell my lover something like, “You make me do bad things,” when I want to amp things up, and of course it always works. There are times when he’s told me, “I want to cum all over you my dirty little slut,” that set me off like a grand finale of a fireworks show. But those words have a much more positive effect on me with my lover, who I know loves, admires and respects me as much as a Summer Solstice afternoon is long, than they would if I were with a man for the first time I was with. There’s something about being challenged, breaking taboos and charting and conquering unknown territories that make sex extra exciting, and sometimes bad words are just the thing to do that.

Still, I believe using negative words to describe sex is far more destructive and harmful in creating a positive sex culture in which people, especially women, are allowed to enjoy all the wonderful feelings and sensations sex has to offer.