On a recent girls’ night out, I caught a showing of "50
Shades of Grey". I wanted to see for
myself what all the R-rated fuss was about. But instead of getting hot and
bothered like I was supposed to, I just got, well, bothered.
To me, billionaire playboy Christian Grey wasn’t so much a sexy
suitor as a creepy predator. He kept showing up uninvited in Anastasia Steele’s
life and ordering her around. Though my
daughter’s only four, I couldn’t help flashing forward and thinking that I definitely
wouldn’t want her dating this guy when she’s a senior in college.
So, yeah, I’ve officially gotten to the age where instead of
identifying with the young heroine in a movie, I imagine that she is my child. Which is why I was silently screaming, “Get
off her, Christian—that girl is somebody's daughter!” for most of the movie.
Let’s put aside the kinky sex for a moment and talk about Christian’s
personality deficits. He’s got a temper, never smiles and doesn’t “do”
relationships. A young woman should run
from this man. But Anastasia does not,
and I had a hard time understanding why. He’s definitely handsome and has a nice butt, but those dead shark eyes
of his did nothing for me. In the
hardware store scene, when Ana jokes that Christian must be buying all that
rope and masking tape because he’s a serial killer, I thought, yeah, that sounds
about right. He and Ted Bundy probably would
have been pals.
If my daughter decides to embark upon an intimate relationship in college, I would hope it involves a couch of pleasure and not a red room of pain.
Now, as for the sex, I don’t have much experience with BDSM but it seems like something that should be attempted between consenting adults
who are equally matched—not a wealthy older guy dominating a young virginal
college student. Before meeting
Christian, Anastasia had no sexual experience, and thus no frame of reference
for what’s healthy and comfortable for her. In my opinion, nobody’s first time should involve a power struggle, a
written contract and fear. When you’re just learning about sex and your
body, you'd ideally have a partner who makes you feel safe, listens to you and
isn’t trying to cause you pain.
You know who was having great sex in "50 Shades of Grey"? Anastasia’s roommate, Kate. When Kate shags Christian’s brother on the couch, that looked like a pretty good
time. They were giggling and couldn’t
stop kissing—not following some rigid script based on one partner’s
pre-conceived set of rules. If my
daughter decides to embark upon an intimate relationship in college, I would
hope it involves a couch of pleasure and not a red room of pain.
I used to have a higher tolerance for violence and danger in
my entertainment. I remember thinking "9 ½
Weeks" was pretty sexy, even though Kim Basinger ends up walking away from an
increasingly abusive Mickey Rourke. But ever since becoming a mom, I can’t even
watch my local news, never mind take on a psycho-sexual drama where a young
woman cries while being whipped. It was
all too much.
It’s strange to me that so many journalists referred to the
50 Shades book triology as “mommy porn.” If I was to write my own mommy porn, it would involve an over-40
housewife whose partner insists that her muffin top and stretch marks are the
sexiest things he’s ever seen. Would you
pay to see that movie?