Slut or She-Stud: What older women can tell younger women about sex

by Kerry Cue

Sibylesque Oscar Wilde quote

Following numerous workplace sex scandals (including allegations of rape) and women’s protest marches, consent has become a major issue in Australia today. Consent will be introduced as a mandatory lesson in Victorian schools (ABC, 22 MAR, 2021). As a result, this article, posted in 2014, is now more relevant than ever.

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My generation invented sex. Cue: Hysterical laughter. We, Baby Boomers, grew up in an age of censured innocence. In the 1950s TV shows parents slept in separate beds and film sex cut from a chaste kiss to an orgasmic metaphor of fireworks, ship foghorn hoot, or, as in the Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr kiss in From Here to Eternity, pounding surf. So we didn’t invent sex. We were just very surprised to discover sex existed.

We were the generation, however, who pushed sex into the public arena. We argued about it. We made it political. And we’ve been arguing about it for 50 years. So we should be able to pass on some advice to younger women. Shouldn’t we?

Sibylesque Sex Toy

Of course, each generation thinks they’ve invented sex. And each generation seems shocked at the ‘outrageous’ sexual behaviour of the next generation. I’ve heard a feminist mother describe her daughter as a ‘slut’. But surely this is what feminists wanted, young girls to take control of and enjoy their own sex lives?

One recent story that amplified the generation gulf on attitudes to sex was: Magaluf girl video: Teen who performed sex acts on 24 men ‘thought she would win holiday (The Mirror, 2 JUL 2014) A teenage British girl who was captured on video performing sex acts on 24 men in Magaluf thought she would win “a holiday” — but instead won a £4 cocktail.
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One million Brits visit Mallorca each year with Magaluf being the focus of a booze culture with organized pub crawls, pub riots and sex on the streets. (Magaluf’s debauched reputation looks set to stay despite pledge to crack down, The Guardian, 11 JUL 2014)

The teen girl at the centre of this controversy licked the penises of 24 men. Hysterical comment erupted. Disgusting. When’s the next flight? It’s her choice. (Feminist response 1) Misogynistic abuse.( Feminist response 2) It’s a class issue. (Lower classes can have the values they want) Public decency issue (Magaluf should clean up it’s act) Privacy issue (The girl did not consent to the filming of the youtube clip)

So we still get hot under the collar when we talk about sex. So lets view this issue in a different context. Our culture is concerned with self-harm among young people via drugs, alcohol, fast cars, dieting and cigarettes. This was an act of self-harm through sex. The drunken teen will potentially harm her health (from 24 germ riddled penises), her self-esteem (she was duped) and her future prospects (Once out there this act cannot be undone).

Our generation was fortunate that smart phones were not filming our sex life booboos. Later generations are not so fortunate.  And we have to urge them to take care and minimize self-harm via sex. We must remind ourselves that name calling serves no purpose.

Meanwhile, another article, Libidos, vibrators and men, oh my! This is what your ageing sex drive looks like, (RUTH SPENCER, The Guardian,26 March 2014) celebrates Gloria Steinem’s 80th birthday declaration that a dwindling libido makes a woman’s mind ‘free for all kinds of great things’. Older women cannot be wise about all things, but we have a clearer picture of our younger selves. Here are some comments on the above article by older women, which could inform younger women about sex if only they would listen:

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Picture Source: Lucilleball.com

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The Leftover Laundry Fashionistas

by Kerry Cue

He’s 83. She’s 84. And they have become an INSTAGRAM sensation modeling laundry left behind in their Taiwan laundromat according to an article by Chris Horton in the New York Times.

Mr. Chang and Ms. Hsu demonstrate that funky fashion and cool style needn’t be expensive or restricted to the youthful cohort. And they make you look at your LOCKDOWN laundry basket with fresh eyes!

POSITIVELY PANDEMIC: Fall Down 7 times. Get Up 8. Do the Hokey Pokey …

by The Sibyls

The PANDEMIC has battered, bruised, and derailed all of us. The pain and challenges are not evenly spread yet the core resilience of survivors has some common elements.

This blog too was interrupted by the Pandemic. But it is time to return to the vitality of The Sibylesque ethos.


Midlife  can  involve many  stresses  including  career  demands,  difficult  teenage children, divorce,  lack of time,  lack of fitness,  parents’   failing  health  and  money  worries  with no simple solutions in sight. But one of the BIGGEST issues of midlife is accepting that you are not always in control. Unexpected things can happen to you despite the best plans. Like, say, A PANDEMIC!

An article by Tara Parker-Pope in The New York Times  (How to Build Resilience in Midlife) gives some pointers that could equally apply at any age and any time.

Life, or so it seems, was simple once. Now it is so complex.
Here are some of the ways to build resilience:

  • Practise Optimism
  • Rewrite Your Story
  • Don’t Personalise It
  • Remember Your Comebacks
  • Support Others
  • Take Stress Breaks
  • Go Out of Your Comfort Zone

We, the Sibyls, would add:

  • Seek joy

Joy will not just arrive on your doorstep. You have to seek it. Find out what makes you happy and what makes you laugh. Then do this every day or, at least, when you can.

My Interview on the Writes4Women Podcast with Pam Cook

by Kerry Cue

I was interviewed by Pam Cook for the Writes4Women Podcast through ZOOM – it’s like Facetime – sitting in my lounge room. The interview is on the WHOOSHKAA platform. Got that. Crazy but fun!

LISTEN: Here.

The Sunday Story Club: Real-life stories that reveal the untidiness beneath the shiny surface of modern life

The Sunday Story Club begins:

“Ironically, considering how strongly we advocate face-to-face contact, the two of us met online. It was 2014 and Doris had just published a memoir, The Twelfth Raven, recounting her husband Martin’s dev­astating stroke and extraordinary recovery. That same year I had established a website, ­Sibylesque, dedicated to breaking down the female stereotypes of age, size, marital status and so on.”

This is the Blog.

And this is the book.

There is the extract in The Weekend Australian Magazine (See pic below)

BOOKTOPIA

AMAZON AUS

BOLINDA AUDIO BOOK LISTEN HERE.

When we started this blog, we never realised it would lead to a book. Fabulous!

 

The Sunday Story Club: Sometimes, it feels like you’re reading someone’s diary.

by Kerry Cue

42 reviewers have gone to the trouble to rate our book, The Sunday Story Club, on Good Reads. As a writer, I’m grateful to each one – even the dud reviewers – because they have taken the time to read and think about our book and that is a big ask in our Click-Scroll-Click culture. I’m also intrigued by the maths that has given us a 3.71 STAR rating.

I am especially grateful to Jessica M’s review of The Sunday Story Club. Here is a brief extract:

‘Sometimes, it feels like you’re reading someone’s diary. You’re shocked, upset, or worried, but you also feel like you’ve been given access to someone’s private moments — someone’s well-kept secrets.’

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Building Connections beyond Stereotypes

by Kerry Cue

One of the great joys of Posting on INSTAGRAM is coming across enthusiastic book groups with hilarious names. Boozy Book Babes is a favourite.

Here is the comment about The Sunday Story Club by the Boozy Book Babes on INSTAGRAM:

‘Beautiful cover! Would it be too ironic for our book club to read this book?’

Touché. The Sunday Story Club is like a book club without books. Whereas a book club asks ‘What do you read?’ in The Sunday Story Club we would ask ‘Why do you read?’ This last question opens up a different and deeper conversation. It is this deeper conversation that helps build connections beyond stereotypes.

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Building Connections. Creating your own Community

by Kerry Cue

We wrote The Sunday Story Club to encourage others to build connections through   deeper conversations. It is these connections that create a community. Doris and I have been running a story salon for 5 years and have built a community based on empathy and understanding because we took the time to stop and listen, really listen without interruption, to others as they told their real-life stories of love, loss, and resilience.

It seems appropriate to talk about community following an interview I did with Jeff Bullen on Community Radio RTR FM, Perth. Audio link here.

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