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ysabel
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Ys [userpic]
Spawned by a conversation

Do me a favor and don't read ahead if you're going to answer the poll questions. The last couple of questions kind of lead the witness a little, and I'd hate to spoil the first few questions with that. *grin*

Poll #458756 Would you rather...

1. With respect to gender, which do you identify as? (Morphological gender is mostly irrelevant to this bit, I think.)

Male.
35(25.7%)
Female.
69(50.7%)
Both.
10(7.4%)
Neither.
3(2.2%)
Other.
3(2.2%)

2. With respect to your identified gender, do you consider yourself generally typical for your gender (1), extremely atypical for your gender (10) or somewhere in between?

Mean: 5.29 Median: 5 Std. Dev 1.98
1
4(2.9%)
2
7(5.1%)
3
18(13.2%)
4
19(14.0%)
5
25(18.4%)
6
20(14.7%)
7
22(16.2%)
8
17(12.5%)
9
4(2.9%)
10
0(0.0%)

3. If you identify as male (even if you checked more than just male up above)...if you were required to choose between losing your sight and losing your dick, which would you choose? (If you do not identify as male, please skip ahead to question 5. I have questions for you too.)

Lose the sight.
9(16.4%)
Lose the dick.
46(83.6%)

4. If you answered the last question, how much of a contest was it? (1 == no contest, the answer was obvious vs. 10 == I'm truly torn, might pause to think even if a pause meant losing both)

Mean: 3.53 Median: 2 Std. Dev 2.58
1
15(27.3%)
2
13(23.6%)
3
6(10.9%)
4
3(5.5%)
5
5(9.1%)
6
3(5.5%)
7
3(5.5%)
8
5(9.1%)
9
1(1.8%)
10
1(1.8%)

5. Regardless of your self-identification, how do you think most men (in Western society, at least) would decide?

Lose the sight.
106(77.9%)
Lose the dick.
30(22.1%)

6. And how hard a choice do you think it would be for them? (Same scale as question 3.)

Mean: 5.36 Median: 5 Std. Dev 2.60
1
9(6.7%)
2
13(9.6%)
3
21(15.6%)
4
11(8.1%)
5
16(11.9%)
6
12(8.9%)
7
18(13.3%)
8
19(14.1%)
9
9(6.7%)
10
7(5.2%)

7. Do you think that most (Western) women would have as strong a reaction to a sight vs. clit choice?

Yes
32(23.7%)
No
103(76.3%)

8. What about women's reaction to "lose sight" vs. "lose all sexuality"?

Now it would be as strong as the mens' reactions.
28(21.1%)
Nope, still less strong, though stronger than before.
61(45.9%)
No difference from #7.
15(11.3%)
Some other change.
9(6.8%)
N/A, I answered Yes to #7.
20(15.0%)

9. Do the men you know tend to conflate "dick" with "all sexuality"?

Overwhelmingly.
30(22.1%)
Generally.
63(46.3%)
Sometimes.
31(22.8%)
Not at all.
8(5.9%)
Something else.
4(2.9%)


As context, now that you're down to the bottom of this. A friend of mine was quite startled at my assessment that most "normal" men would choose to lose the sight over losing the dick. I think she thought I was making this assertion lightly or purely in jest, when I was being quite serious based on my interactions with a wide variety of men. I have met many men who are thoughtful about their sexuality and for whom this exercise would be interesting, but the majority of the men I know would rather lose just about anything before losing the dick. (For the record, women have their own blind spots in my experience. This is not a slam on men, just a statement of observed patterns. In fact, I think it's more a statement about society as a whole than about men, really.)

We got into that discussion because of a funny quote about blowjobs, of course. *grin*

Current Mood: curiouscurious
Comments

It occurs to me that I filled your poll out wrong, in that I don't identify as male but answered the male questions anyway. But I do imagine that if I were male (and I do feel vaguely male from time to time), that would be the answer I'd give. And it's not much different from the answer I'd give as a female-- I think I'd rather lose my sight than my clit, and just rely for the rest of my life on my highly visual imagination. =P

Things that went in to my decisions (or just stuff I thought about):

With regard to the choice: A male can lose his dick and it is not a public thing. Losing one's sight is a public thing that matters in interaction every moment. It changes, directly, how you interact with the world. Losing one's penis is a big change but you aren't always using your penis.

Regarding losing penis vs. losing clit:

Losing the penis sounds like a bigger deal to me because you're losing a lot of useful structure needed for normal, require function, such as urinating. Losing the clit is a big change but doesn't seem to me to be as disruptive to everyday function.

Hmmm. Evaluating my responses it's pretty obvious that I don't regard sexuality as an immediate and required part of life. Wow, I've been single for a looong time.

While the dick is an important part of the average man's life, it's not the only thing going on. Losing the dick results in the loss of three critical male activities: fucking, masturbating, and writing your name in the snow. But losing your sight ceases many more critical male activities such as babe watching, sports watching, porn watching, driving cool cars, fixing cool cars, shooting pool, shooting beer cans, playing video games, and admiring your snow-writing skills. Furthermore, masturbation isn't as much fun if you can't watch porn at the same time and sex loses some of the appeal if you're unsure how hot your potential partner is.

(Not that I subscribe to all of those stereotypes, but there are certainly lots of men who feel strongly about many of those things.)

No argument. I just know a lot of men who wouldn't put that much thought into the question, seriously. 'lose the dick' as a concept would just make them run screaming to whatever the other choice was.

My readership is, of course, skewed towards people who tend to be thoughtful about sex at a bare minimum. But it's an interesting question nonetheless.

Notes:

My gender identity is "cranky female" -- I'm definitely female, but I don't have to like it. I also identify as a gay man trapped in a woman's body. :) Anyone who's seen me go camping agrees with this. Just because you're in the woods is no reason not to pack the satin sheets and cook dilled shrimp.

Of course most men would give up their sight before their dicks. Many men are told as children that if they masturbate they'll go blind. Obviously, most men have already made this choice and risked blindness.

Or can spot a silly superstition when they see one.

Sure, just quash my amusing hyperbole with reason, why don't you?

It was supposed to come across as toungue-in-cheek... damn this text medium!

In unrelated news, you look so much like my cousin that I had to check your userinfo. :D

Of course most men would give up their sight before their dicks. Many men are told as children that if they masturbate they'll go blind. Obviously, most men have already made this choice and risked blindness.

Best response so far, hands down. *grin*

I didn't know people are still told that. That's pretty unhealthy to hear as a child.

Dammit, I misclicked. Chalk up another one for "lose the sight."

The answer's not really fair, though; having watch my mother lose her sight, I know there are plenty of things developed to help her around, including voice-read computer screens, touch-typing, braille, and audiobooks. If I lose the dick, there's no way to replicate that sensation for myself.

It's not all sexuality, of course, but it's the major bit for me. I like my orgasms.

You can change the answer in the poll by going back to http://www.livejournal.com/poll/?id=458756&mode=enter (in case you didn't know that). Though it's not crucial.

I am amused that the actual 'if it were me' is running 20/80 in favor of losing the dick, but the perception is running 80/20 in favor of losing the sight. Then again, I am not particularly surprised, as folks who read me are perhaps just a tad skewed. *grin*

I'll have to write a bit more about sexuality and genital changes here once it's died down a bit. Since I do have some personal perspective on that...

I didn't know that, actually. I'll get 'round to it shortly.

However, you don't have a TOTAL personal perspective, because you didn't lose it. You changed it. So you still have sensation, which is different from having it gone.

Well, yes. It's part of why I put the 'identify as male' in the 'what would you choose' thing. Folks like me wouldn't have quite the same view of things, most likely. *grin*

I'll get into that if I actually write it all down.

I think that it's a bit disappointing to hear that most guys would pick such an option. Makes me a bit shy to say the opposite. But then again, I never liked the darned thing in the first place. (Although we've had our together moments.)

Haha, I have, somewhere in my brain, the notion that females would have just as much sexuality as men. It's surprising to see the results, and makes me wonder whether guys' bias is just skewing the results. Interesting poll nonetheless.

In my experience, many (most) of the guys I know place much of their 'maleness' - and in their case, this is frequently much of their personal identity - in their members.

I'm male. I like being male. But I don't equate being male with having a penis. I recognise this places me firmly in the minority, but there's nothing new there.

I swear I must be one of the few guys who did this who's honest enough to admit he'd take blindness over loss of the penis.

First of all, my vision is for crap. It's underpowered, colorblind, and lacks depth perception. At times it feels slightly better than looking through dirty glass.

Second of all, loss of vision may alter how I live, but it an alteration in perception. Losing the primary sexual organ I've become quite fond of over the past 24 years would be a severe change in identity.

And frankly, I think I'd have less trouble learning braille than dealing with the trauma of no genitals.

Currently facing the choice of losing some hair or half my labia minor I'm going for the hair. If I had to lose my sight, I'd go for that, too.

Labia Major I meant.

I normalize my gender role a lot. I'm probably not a very typical female here, but I know where I would be and on top of that I refuse to let people's conceptions of femininity constrain what I want to do, so I had some trouble answering the poll. I also generally assume men are more intelligent about their own bodies and sexualities than to think their dick is their whole sexuality - surely that can't be common. Certainly isn't among my male friends and ex-lovers.. but like you say earlier, it's sort of a self-selecting crowd, I guess. So sad if people either don't realize the value of their clit or think their dick is everything.

Just for the record--and this is a short summary of a much larger essay--my self identified gender is 'androgyne', I guess. Which most people tend to assume female, but it's not really both or neither, just ... somewhere in between.