One of the internet’s great pleasures is the ability to read newspapers from other countries. In England’s Telegraph there is an interview with sociologist Dr. Catherine Hakim who has just written a report on what she calls the “male sex deficit” for a British think tank, the Institute for Economic Affairs.
by Hannah Jay
“Dr Hakim calls this gender difference in libido “the male sex deficit”. To cater for it, she believes we need to not onlylegalise prostitution but encourage women to “cash in” by making money as escorts while they are still “young and attractive”.”
In her Telegraph interview, Dr. Hakim goes on to say,
It’s a shocking difference: men are twice as interested in sex as women and it is the same around the world. Surveys show we see the male sex deficit in Sweden, France, Spain, Japan and South America.
It is hard-wired into us: men, on average, are more highly sexed than women. You can’t call it biological, as that implies it is animalistic: it allows critics to dismiss it.
“It’s across all age groups, but as soon as you hit 30, the gap starts growing dramatically. For a lot of women, the decline in sexual interest is closely linked to having children and they just don’t regain it afterwards. But the evidence is it happens as we age even without children”.
Thus Dr. Hakim argues older men are drawn to younger women not just for their looks, but for their libidos.
“With a 20-year age gap, you get women who have the same level of sexual interest as men,” she says. “You would expect that as women get richer and more powerful as they get older there would be a strong demand for buying toy boys – but there isn’t.”
On the one hand it is amazing that this fact about men and women causes any consternation at all. On the other, Dr. Hakim’s proposed cure for the “male sex deficit” has raised more than a few eyebrows. Asked if there was anything women could do about this Dr. Hakim replied,
“They can exploit the male sexual deficit by making huge amounts of money when they’re young and attractive by offering sexual services,” says Dr Hakim. “That’s exactly what’s happening. Students are dabbling part time in the sex industry and make a fortune. They quite like the idea of lots of sex: they have raging hormones like young men.”
As you might expect Dr. Hakim analysis has been attacked but her prescription – solve the male sex deficit through the marketplace has united feminists and conservatives in furious opposition. Especially in her home country, England. Something which Dr. Hakim expected,
Maximizing the Obvious
If you are an escort or a mistress or a sugar baby or are thinking of these businesses as options, Dr. Hakim’s observations are hardly news. In fact, the escorting business itself would pretty much end if, somehow, the male sex deficit suddenly ended.
What Dr. Hakim brings to the mix is the idea that market economics are the escort’s friend. What she is missing is that really successful escorts are not dealing exclusively with a male sex deficit; rather they are exploring the opportunities presented by sex positive women in a sex negative culture. Put another way, sex is a part of escorting but the real money is driven by a set of different impulses which mainstream Anglo-Saxon cultures treat with, at best suspicion and, at worst, criminalization.
Men, also known as “the escort’s clients”, live in what might be described as a politically correct, feminized culture. It is a culture driven by an attempt to regularize and normalize male behavior. But it is also a culture where women, no doubt for good reasons, have not simply abandoned sex but they have also abandoned the idea of femininity.
Around 60% of women over 16 work for a living in the United States. This is up from 45% in the 1970’s (and still lower than many European nations). Within the working world women face many challenges and one of the most fundamental is being taken seriously. There are many reasons for this but the upshot has been that many working women have adopted a dress and style which deliberately downplays their femininity. (And, yes, that is a sweeping generalization and there are all sorts of exceptions; but they don’t matter for this particular argument.)
Even women who are not in the work force have tended towards a look which is strikingly desexualized. Go to your local mall or off on the school run and count the number of women wearing skirts, much less dresses.
There are good, practical reasons why women have adopted easy, comfortable clothing even at the expense of their femininity. After all, they have a lot to do, places to go, minivans to drive. And, if they are married with kids they are “off the market” anyway so what does it matter?
At work, a woman who consistently wears feminine clothing and pretty heels may find herself the occasional object of unwelcome male attention but she will certainly run into a fair bit of flack from her fellow female co-workers. It is astonishing how quickly a bit of pressure will lead to conformity to the “office uniform”. (We’ll leave clothing as a status marker for another day.)
The fact is that women can be astonishingly nasty and very effective in dealing with what they perceive to be competitive threats from other women. (And, yes there is science backing that up.)
The upshot of all of this is that there is far more than a “male sex deficit” at play in the modern world. There is a profound scarcity of sexual differentiation and, I fear, an anti-feminine, anti-glamour bias at the heart of most men’s lives at home and at work.
Time and Attention: the Escort’s Secret Weapons
If, as Dr. Hakim suggests, the male sex deficit drives men to the escort’s door, what keeps them coming back and what keeps them paying well over the odds for a quick bit of “deficit easing” is unlikely to be the simple sexual activities which are often the conclusion to an escort encounter.
While men certainly do not like the relative scarcity of a rollicking good time in bed, the clever escort recognizes that men are missing a great deal more than that in their day to day lives. Actually thinking about what those missing things are will give an escort a tremendous advantage in her encounters and in her business. It will also enable escorts who are no longer young or not model gorgeous to do as well or better than the young and beautiful.
When a man hires an escort the first thing he is giving himself is time. Whether an hour or an evening or a weekend, when a man is with an escort he is, to a large degree, off the radar. Whatever the demands of his job and his family and his friends, when he is at your in-call they are on the other side of your door. Where women have all manner of coping mechanisms for the stress in their lives – girlfriends, shopping, therapy, rom coms – men tend to have fewer acceptable ways of gaining “me” time.
A successful escort will work very hard to create and maintain the illusion that time with her is time away from the madness of everyday life. Simply having a calm, minimalist, soothing environment already puts the escort outside her clients’ everyday experience.
The second gift an escort can give her client is attention. Depending on his place in the grand corporate hierarchy, her client is either constantly clamoring for his superiors’ attention or having his time wasted by people who want his attention for their own ends. At home, many men find themselves cast as chauffeur to their children and helpful drone to their wives.
When a man visits an escort, for their time together, he is the focus of her attention. Yes, some of that attention will be sexual: putting his pleasure first is what escorts do best. But the escort’s attention is focused from the moment her client calls to book a date to the point where her door closes. It is a terrific gift. For an hour or two the escort’s client can talk about what he wants to, finish his sentences, enjoy the sensual pleasures a girl can give a man. After all, if the escort is doing it right, everything she does from her pre-date preparations to her choice of lingerie to her hair and make-up, refreshments and even her conversation will be focused on her client’s needs and desires.
All the more so if her client is a regular. Because, after a couple of encounters, an escort will have a very good idea of exactly what sort of attention suits her client best. Of course she’ll know about his preferences in bed and be more able to accommodate those as well. But she will also know much more about how he likes her to dress, what he likes to do at the beginning of a date and how he likes an encounter to proceed. The reason why her client is a regular is that she has been paying very close attention to his actual desires. It is an extremely powerful and attractive change of pace.
The Femininity Deficit
Dr. Hakim’s “male sex deficit” is a fairly crude analysis of the reasons why paid sex can be a very lucrative option for women. Crude because it is focused on a single factor. However, what men are missing and what girls can provide at great benefit to themselves is more subtle than that. Time and attention are two gifts; but who are they given by?
Women obviously. But an ambitious escort soon realizes that her clients arrive with certain implicit expectations and that if she meets those expectations she can command excellent rates and return calls. While there is certainly lots of room for “service providers” who attend to the basics of the male sex deficit, the girls who can ask for a get premium rates meet other, equally urgent, needs.
Many men have a deeply internalized sense of the feminine. Internalized in many cases because we live in a politically correct world where expressing the desires which come from this sense of the feminine is seen as inappropriate and problematic. A man asking his wife to wear more feminine clothing is a potential minefield. Commenting in any way on a female co-worker’s clothing can and does get men fired.
Stepping outside Pantsuit Nation for a few hours is as transgressive and as sexy as much of the consenting adult activity an escort encounter may involve. All of a sudden a man is in a situation with a woman who is delighted to be seen as a woman.
In an instant, all the practical matters of being taken seriously or being comfortable in the minivan no longer matter: for the clever escort revels in all of the feminine delights of a very different world. It is often said that a man’s mistress has an unfair advantage over his wife. After all, her life contains no children, no uninteresting job to make the mortgage payments, no endless housework. Or, to be more accurate, a mistress or an escort is not going to let her patron or her client see any of those backstage details. Instead, she is going to create the illusion of glamour, sensuality and luxury as she entertains her client.
Every girl will create this illusion differently and many clients, once they become regulars, will want particular items which a savvy escort will be delighted to include. However the most basic element of the illusion is that an escort comes to her encounters with an almost exaggerated sense of feminine style.
Where office girls look to have their hair “tidy”, an escort can go for a tussled, bed head look; pantsuits are exchanged for dresses, sensible flats for pleasing heels, nude lipstick for a hint of scarlet. Easy care manmade fabrics are switched out for cottons, linens, silk and cashmere. Practical lingerie? Save it for the carpool: stockings, garter belts, lacy cup bras and pretty panties as well as slips and clever negligees are all part of the magic.
At the same time, the illusion of the feminine is maintained with a very basic attitude. Where the office girls are fighting for equality, the escort assumes the superiority of the feminine. She sets the expectations for her encounters and she sets them high. Understanding the old school conception of femininity and bringing that attitude to her escorting encounters means a girl is able to offer her client’s a glimpse into a gentler, more sensual, age.
And, of course, this feminine ideal extends to an escort’s in-call location. To charge top dollar for her time, an escort needs to understand that the sorts of clients who will pay that dollar are looking for a complete experience. I often remark that men are visual creatures. While they will not necessarily notice the clean lines and well thought out decor of your apartment, they will notice piles of old receipts or undone laundry behind the door.
Escorts at a certain level are very much a luxury purchase. A man at this level is not paying top rates to have his “male sex deficit” serviced. What he is buying is a complete experience with a buffed, polished feminine woman.
Of course it is a fantasy. Of course he is not going to encounter this sort of gorgeous creature among the office drudges and soccer moms of real life. And that is exactly what the higher levels of the escort experience are offering: soft lights, lots of lace, soft hands and a gentle enthusiasm are all part of the experience.
Back to the Future
Dr. Hakim’s male sex deficit disguises a more basic fact about Western, and specifically, Anglo-Saxon influenced societies: the drive towards women’s equality has, officially, displaced more traditional feminine roles and marginalized men who appreciate those roles. Pantsuit Nation is triumphant and, officially, men and women have accepted the desexualized female ideal it promotes.
Unofficially, many men – and many women – enjoy taking vacations from the rigid strictures of Pantsuit Nation. They enjoy the delights of politically incorrect and relentlessly impractical femininity. And, unofficially, the fashion and beauty industries cater to the politically incorrect desire of many women to look beautiful, feminine and, indeed, sexy.
At the intersection of Pantsuit Nation’s anti-feminine orthodoxy and the unofficial, but unsuppressed, culture of feminine fashion, beauty and desire, escorts pitch their tents. What they are offering is a glimpse into a world where men are allowed to enjoy women without worrying about crossing the invisible lines of “appropriate behavior” which constrain the “real” world.
The good girls of Pantsuit Nation see this as an unfortunate failure of men to evolve and align with the sex-negative world view of enlightened people everywhere. Escorts and mistresses and sugar babies understand this as a huge opportunity to let men be men in a safe, sexy and relaxing environment. There is no “battle of the sexes”; they both come out winning.
The “male sex deficit” is a source of income for service providers, but balancing the femininity deficit with a fantasy experience of flirtation, feminine grace, pretty clothes and gorgeous lingerie is the value added encounter which fills a girl’s Louboutin box with all that lovely cash.
Men actually do know what they are missing; but Pantsuit Nation has made it problematic for their desires to be mentioned in polite company. Clever, creative escorts have the opportunity to have all the fun of being a girl while being very well paid for catering to both needs and desires.
The alpha men are already bored in their man caves. Fast cars and good wine have their place; but the real satisfaction lies in the boudoir of a feminine, graceful, woman who promises and delivers glamour, luxury and pleasure in equal measure. With the right escort the male sex deficit will take care of itself. And so will all the rest.