The sexual revolution has been a scourge for humanity!

Can’t seem to get hardly anyone to respond to my dating/relationships threads.

Not all of my threads suck so bad. For instance, if you post something like “Who’s the cutest SDMB poster?” you get hordes of people jumping on the bandwagon. (Christ, I think that one’s still going on.)

Or if you criticize someone’s favorite author, you get hordes jumping on your ass.

I think the key is that people love to respond to flirty or argumentative threads, because they provide fuel for the ego. Meanwhile, dating threads tend to remind us of our worst, most humiliating moments, and most people don’t want to talk about that.

OK, here’s the topic: the so-called sexual revolution has killed romance, taken the fun out of dating, made every date a life-or-death decision and forced people into exclusive “relationships” which are still not fully committed. Anyone agree?

OK, I’ll bite. I read your other thread and I thought you had some good points about the increased expectations people have for relationships these days, but on the whole I disagree that these changes are all bad.

I think the decline in casual dating can be traced, at least in part, to the fact that women don’t feel obliged to have a date every time they venture out of doors. (I’m exaggerating only slightly here. Forty years ago, many colleges did not allow female students to leave the dorms at night without a male escort.) No wonder it was easier for men to get a date in those days – women had to accept or stay home, regardless of how they felt about the guy. We have other choices now, and this, to my mind, is progress.

You’ve argued that current social customs force people into exclusive relationships when they’re not really ready. Could be, but on the other hand, the number of people forced into less than ideal marriages – either because of pregnancy or because it’s simply expected of them – is much lower now. In general, it’s much easier to get out of a bad relationship – even one loaded with false expectations and emotional baggage – than a bad marriage.

Finally, I’d argue that there have always been a certain number of insecure and immature souls who are desperate for a Committed Relationship, never mind with whom. Sane people have always had to dodge these folks. The tactics change, but the basic problem remains the same.

I’ll bite too-
I think I agree mmore with FP- there was reasoning, explanations behind the viewpoint.

Your viewpoint, on the other hand,

was presented rather tersely- I can’t follow your reasoning, so to me, it’s kind of a thread non-sequitur.
I would be interested in hearing your arguments as opposed to the summary statement resulting from those arguments. Gives me something to reply to.

Personally, I think that if anyone has taken the fun out of dating, it’s that particular person or the person they are dating. I had the greatest time of my life dating Mr. Tequila, and there was and still is an incredible amount of romance to it. If two people are desperate for a relationship, it won’t be much fun. If two people want to enjoy their dating, they will.

To go deeper though, I don’t think it was the sexual revolution of the late 60’s, but the de-evolution of teenagers in general. Years ago, if your family didn’t like your suiter, you didn’t date. Dating involved the entire family to a point. Then, kids starting deciding they had “rights” to do what they wanted, and took great pains to prove it, such as dating people that even they didn’t like, just to “show the folks” they were an adult. Now, you have 15 year olds demanding “respect” from ground zero, before anyone even talks to them.

Just a thought.

inor–here’s the reasoning from my other thread. What do you think?

Am I understanding you correctly - are you blaming the idea that women should be treated as human beings of equal stature to men for the loss of fun in dating relationships? I’m having a really hard time making a leap of logic that large. What kind of fun do you think you should be having?

I do agree that there has been a cultural shift in favor of quicker commitments compared to earlier generations. I also agree that this is not necessarily a good thing.
But I’m not sure that that is a result of the sexual revolution. In my personal experience, this rush to commitments existed in my high school days, when very few of us were having sex, or even fooling around all that much.
Frankly, I think there is an argument to be made that the “sex=relationship” paradigm is a result of the failure of the sexual relationship, rather than the success thereof. (i.e., we are still hamstrung by the Victorian belief that sex equals marriage, or at least commitment).



I haven’t lived in the Midwest long enough now (8 months) to make the comparison, but being a CA beach girl, I thought my dating was fabulous. Had my share of flings, and pre-marital, but Mr. Tequila and I dated for 9 months before sleeping together, and we both loved every second of it yet neither was expected to remain “exclusive”.

Again, I feel that if people aren’t having fun while dating, then that’s a personality problem with them or who they are dating. Granted there seems to be pressure nowadays to be committed to someone or have a date for any occasion, but there is still an element of personal choice: Live to what others expect, or do what makes you happy. I tend to go for the latter:)

I also agree with SuaSponte’s last line. I won’t even comment on it because it is so well spoken.

Well, well, well. No matter what the topic, there’s always one self-righteous, accusatory post in the bunch.

The only “leap of logic” here is your conclusion that I am against equality for men and women in relationships. How exactly did you get there? Please point out anything I have said in my posts that can be interpreted as anti-woman. Are you equating the sexual revolution with women’s equality? Somehow I don’t think things have worked out that way.

For the record, I think dating should be casual, non-serious, non-committal, non-exclusive, less sexual, and fun. The fact that it is not this way means that the dating scene in the US (for most people) is rather sucky and not fun.

Find some male chauvinism in that, I dare you.

tclouie, I agree with you that featherlou misinterpreted your argument, but chill the f**k out. We’re having an nice, interesting conversation here. Even if you think you were provoked, why respond like that and risk degenerating this thread into a flame war?


I was around at the beginning
I attended science summer school at the Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology in 1959.

I heard Dr. Gregory Pincus, who had just completed the first trials of “THE PILL” sau, “We know it works, but we do not know what the effect on society will be!”

Best wishes,

Was there any speculation at that time as to the societal ramifications?

In hindsight, what do you think the effects have been?

I’m not really against birth-control devices…I think they have made things too easy for some, but I wouldn’t want to get rid of them. Too many babies with unprepared mothers.

I think the sexual revolution was primarily a major attitude shift. Maybe it owed something to science, but it could have owed more to drugs, rock’n’roll, postwar affluence, youthful rebellion and Herbert Marcuse.

:)Thank goodness for cooler heads. I would be declaring war every other thread.

Now, if only soneone would say that to the people who flame me…

(Adding something tongue-in-cheek before somebody else comes along and says it seriously…)

<David Letterman Dumb Guy Voice>

Duuhh, people who say that usually aren’t gettin’ any.


Carry on.

For the record, I actually was asking for clarification of your stance. Re-reading my post, I realize that it came across as more accusatory than I intended. I’m still interested in hearing more about how you came to your conclusions.

How did I come to my conclusions?

Well, I’ve been a teenager, a twentysomething and a thirtysomething, and for me the biggest obstacle in getting a date (besides shyness and fear of rejection) was always that everyone acted like they were already married, and asking someone for a date was like asking to marry them, or like asking them to divorce someone else and marry you.

(Of course, they could have been just telling me this, to let me down gently. But other posters have backed up my conclusion that casual dating is rarer and more difficult nowadays. So it seems I guessed right.)

And, I’ve heard about the 50’s and 60’s, and it seems to me that back then dating was more relaxed and “going steady” was less common.

And I’ve heard about the Midwest and about other countries, and the impression I get is that dating in those places is more casual and less sexual.

Thanks for the clarification, featherlou.