On being irresistible

31 Dec

Perhaps I’m contrary and ungrateful but I never felt good about being told by a lover  “You are irresistible.” I’d much rather he or she said something like  “I can’t resist you” and in that utterance, joyfully assumed the burden of supernatural compulsion instead of burdening me with it.

It would also be much more honest if things went wrong and my lover said “I now can/must resist you because my wife caught me, or I found someone else, or I’ve changed my mind” or whatever event provoked a change in his or her assessment of the situation. Instead of undermining my sense of myself with their change of heart, the responsibility then properly rests with the one whose desires, for whatever reason, have shifted.

I’ve never in my life found anyone to be irresistible. I’ve been overwhelmed by desire, overwhelmed by love, overwhelmed by seriously significant stupidity, but overwhelmed by my own sensations, the agent of my own downfall, not a victim subjected to another’s supernatural powers. In the end this matters, this sense that if I am drowning in love and desire, however recklessly, I am doing my own drowning the other isn’t bewitching me into it.

This may seem like unimportant hair-splitting carping, but it’s actually about taking responsibility, and empowerment. The statement “You are irresistible” gives the other all the power, and denies me the opportunity to take responsibility for my own actions. “I can’t resist you” takes all responsibility, and taking honest responsibility always empowers. The inability to resist is not in itself a negative thing. Denying it as part of one’s character might well be.

And there is something endearing about a human being who can admit an inability to resist as an aspect of his or her own self, rather than it being the fault of an irresistible other.

For women, being thought irresistible has caused and continues to cause us no end of grief, abuse, and in some instances, death. If we are credited with supernatural powers, we will also be made to pay for them. Excessive restrictions are placed on our freedoms in an effort to contain and control our perceived potentially uncontrollable natures. Those who abuse us may be leniently viewed in the light of our magically seductive powers. At its crudest, the irresistibility narrative says wearing short skirts will make men rape us, and there is a continuum from there. Telling a woman she’s irresistible is always an abdication of responsibility. You can’t resist her. It’s your thing, not hers. Own it.

End of rant.

Happy New Year.

 

irresistible

 

 

 

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22 Responses to “On being irresistible”

  1. Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) December 31, 2014 at 11:24 am #

    Hair very nicely split. A perfect bookend for a less than fully pleasing year.

    And now, for some reason, my thoughts turn to things Madagascan. Fiannarantsoa. And lemurs.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ðaosorios December 31, 2014 at 11:40 am #

    Great post about empowerment. One comment, though:

    “Instead of undermining my sense of myself with their change of heart…”

    Have you considered that with this wording you’re denying yourself the opportunity to keep your sense of yourself inaltered by what other people say. If we are to take responsibility for our own actions and feelings -and I wholeheratedly agree that we should- whatever other people say shouldn’t have such a strong influence, don’t you think?

    Cheers and Happy Ney Year to you too!

    Like

    • Jennifer Wilson December 31, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

      Yes, good point.
      I am still learning to be immune to the opinions of others, but lately have progressed in leaps and bounds.

      It’s a fine line though, sometimes listening to others can be helpful and enlightening. Deciding which is which is the key, I guess.

      Happy New Year to you 🙂

      Like

  3. Richard Laidlaw December 31, 2014 at 12:49 pm #

    Well that was irresistible 🙂

    Happy New Year, Jennifer!

    Like

  4. saraharnetty December 31, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

    Very interesting perspective, Jennifer. Happy new year. 🙂

    Like

  5. paul walter December 31, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

    Iwish I could say this one connected, but no, sorry..

    Like

    • Jennifer Wilson December 31, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

      Well, they can’t all connect PW.
      Happy New Year anyway 🙂

      Like

  6. paul walter December 31, 2014 at 4:07 pm #

    Same to you, kind lady.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. mix1127 January 1, 2015 at 12:10 am #

    Have you read Venus & Adonis, Shakespeare’s erotic poem?

    Like

    • Jennifer Wilson January 1, 2015 at 7:57 am #

      ‘Fondling,’ she saith, ‘since I have hemmed thee here
      Within the circuit of this ivory pale,
      I’ll be a park, and thou shalt be my deer;
      Feed where thou wilt, on mountain or in dale:
      Graze on my lips; and if those hills be dry,
      Stray lower, where the pleasant fountains lie.

      That Venus was a dirty girl… 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • Anonymous January 1, 2015 at 9:39 am #

        And what about her deer Adonis?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Anonymous January 1, 2015 at 11:12 am #

        Exactly. Perhaps Venus was overwhelmed (as you put it) by seriously significant stupidity? Or maybe she just wanted to be pleasured?

        Like

  8. Team Oyeniyi January 1, 2015 at 5:31 am #

    Wonderful! Agree 100% Jen!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. doug quixote January 1, 2015 at 9:59 am #

    I think it good that you explore these issues, Guinevere.

    And thank you for that excerpt from the Bard. Delightful.

    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Team Oyeniyi January 2, 2015 at 12:18 am #

    Reblogged this on Love versus Goliath : A Partner Visa Journey and commented:
    This is a very good analysis if the concept of irresistibility and who is responsible in a relationship for the power attached thereto. Highly recommended reading!

    Like

  11. Jo Tamar January 7, 2015 at 8:50 am #

    *Applause*

    Liked by 1 person

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