Opinion: Objectifying Yourself? Sexual Object vs Sentient Being (or both?)


If you enjoy hookups and no-strings-attached sex with strangers, this article is probably not for you. If you find this satisfying, that’s awesome, and there is no judgment whatsoever.

I am in no position to judge because I have also channelled my inner ‘Jezebel’ in the not too distant past, and I detest ‘slut-shaming’ (not crazy about that term either.)

It’s just that the ‘coming and going’, just left me feeling ‘kak’ and unsatisfied, which may not be the case for you. You may know what you want, and that is what you are getting.

I want to chat to the guys out there who feel like I do, the guys that want a meaningful, intimate long-term relationship with a dude that loves and respects them. Disclaimer: I am not professing to know all the answers or solutions, this is just an article sharing how I feel about this matter. I am also not saying that having casual sex means you don’t want a meaningful and intimate relationship.

I’ve heard a lot of guys share with me that they crave intimacy and a significant bond with another chap, but I have noticed that many also have profiles on hookup apps and websites that feature just their bare torsos and not much about who they are.

I can’t be 100% sure, but I suspect that it’s going to be challenging to have an intimate and meaningful encounter with another man if I’m advertising myself as “Manwhore Deposit Box”, “Top Drilling Machine” or “Gagging Bottom” because it would be objectifying myself.

I’d be advertising myself as someone who first and foremost wants to f*&k or be f*&ked, which is great, but only if that’s all that I wanted. It’s hard for me to take anyone too seriously if they send me close-ups of their unwrapped crotch before I’ve had a chance to know their birth name. I’m guessing that if what I want in my life is more than just another ‘takeaway’ sexual exchange, I should probably find another way of putting myself out there. Someone once shared with me the following adage, “Nobody will want to buy the cow if you keep giving away the milk.” This struck a chord with me.

As a person who works in marketing, I know that I should best advertise myself according to the desired outcome I want. If I do something to attract someone who will probably just want sex, I won’t be able to lament if none of the guys on the app wants anything more than that from me. Like I said, if all that you want is to be a receptacle or a repetitive insertion for another guy, then this is exactly the way to market yourself.

I’m not sure. Maybe we are complex and multi-layered enough to be able to enjoy a purely sexual, physical and relief-oriented lifestyle on apps and websites, and still, manage to find more intimate and meaningful encounters via other means. If you can get this right, please share your secret with me.

I know that it can be lonely out here as a single guy and that having purely physical encounters may feel better than nothing. But for me, it is a bit like filling myself up with junk food and other crap, because I don’t believe that I will be able to find something more wholesome and fulfilling to eat.

Junk food is instant gratification – a quick fix. Whereas, a decent meal takes time and carefully selected ingredients to prepare.

So, my proposal is: If what you do want is to land an LTR and get proper up close and personal with someone, maybe you should try expressing yourself as someone like that. Maybe it will be worth the wait for all of us if we try it.

As Steve Jobs said: “If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.”

Bruce J. Little is the Content Creator for Anova Health Institute, including We The Brave, Health4Trans and Health4Men. For info on sexual health for men who have sex with men, go to www.health4men.co.za.

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