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Monday, 09 Feb 2015

Fifty Shades of Harm - Why Fifty Shares of Grey is so harmful.

By Dr. Becky Spelman

photo credit: Dominion via photopin (license)

What’s the harm in a little fun? Millions of women, and some men, have enjoyed reading Fifty Shades of Grey, and now they can enjoy seeing the lurid erotic novel played out on the big screen too.

Everyone has sexual fantasies, which are a normal, healthy part of our psychological make-up. There’s nothing wrong with letting our mind run riot, and imagining ourselves in all sorts of steamy situations. But the normalising of S&M behaviours, which are increasingly presented in the media as something anyone might want to engage in on a Saturday night, is actually very dangerous. Of course, some adults assess the risks and decide that they would like to engage in some edgy sex-play – but increasingly very vulnerable females, inspired by 50 Shades of Grey and other forms of popular erotica – have started to think that abusive sexual behaviour is the norm and something to aspire to.

The reality is that being tied up, beaten and humiliated is not the norm for most people, and it shouldn’t be. When women, especially those who may be emotionally vulnerable for whatever reason, start to think that a “healthy” sexual relationship involves a dangerous,  predatory man doing whatever he wants to them, we have a problem.

Most people don’t enjoy inflicting pain on others, and those that do are not healthy individuals, they often suffer from a range of problematic behaviours; many can be diagnosed as having a narcissistic or psychopathic personality disorder (also known as sociopathic disorder although slightly different in ways) . They can be immensely manipulative. The reality is that they need help for this problem – but instead they’re receiving the message that they are actually sexy, edgy and cool. The intrigued women they meet are receiving the exact same messages from the media, and that makes them vulnerable to getting into situations that they can’t control, with sexual partners they don’t know well, and haven’t vetted. In the case of females who may have experienced abuse or trauma in the past, they can be doubly vulnerable, detached from their emotions, and not in the best position to make judicious choices. This risky sexual behaviour will often increasing in extremity at each encounter  and can result in serious emotional damage as well as being physically hurt, seriously injured or killed.

If you or anyone you care for is tempted to get involved in risky sexual behaviour, my suggestion is that it is time to look for professional help with the underlying causes of the attraction to experiencing or inflicting pain. Some forms of sexual behaviour are better staying where they belong – strictly in the realm of fantasy.

If you would like to talk to someone about risky or addictive sexual behaviours, self-esteem issues, or an abusive relationship, contact the Private Therapy Clinic by telephone at:   +4402038820684 or book online by clicking below.

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