Ally Hirschlag of SheKnows recently cited some points I had made in another piece re men, strip clubs, and what behavior is “ok” — or not.
Is it ok for men to go to strip clubs?
In my view, yes it is. Ally agrees. In “Why I think it’s OK if my guy goes to a strip club,” she writes:
So I’m going to put all my cards on the table here — my fiancé occasionally goes to strip clubs. He doesn’t go by himself on a Tuesday night after work or anything, but from time to time, he enjoys the scene with his buddies.
And while it’s certainly not my favorite pastime of his, I’m totally fine with him going, as long as he tells me about it. Sometimes I’ll even go as far as to ask for details about the excursion, because I’m genuinely curious about the appeal it holds for guys…
He’s never been able to give me a precise answer on why he enjoys going to strip clubs, but from the bits and pieces of his experiences, I’ve gathered it has to do with feeling like you’re in a fantasy. I asked guys on Reddit to elaborate, and aside from a smattering of “boobs” comments, I got one pretty enlightening answer. (here)
Ally then went on to share some of the info she gathered from Reddit. There were some really interesting responses!
My insights were incorporated via a simple sociological observation – things like strip clubs (and porn and cars and clothes and religious symbols and anything else you can think of) do not have inherent, fixed meaning. We assign meaning to human creations, meanings that are widely variable and can evolve over time. As such, there is nothing inherently demeaning or problematic about strip clubs, including working in one or patronizing the business. The meaning and the problems come from the way we as individuals and as a society hand them.
Now, this is not to say that strip clubs cant be “involved” in individual and/or interpersonal problems. These problems, however, do not come from some nefarious essence borne into a club. Problems can come from excess, misrepresentations or dishonesty, and any number of other behaviors that come into play (and meanings that factor in) — but these are not “because or” the strip club. This is also not to suggest that everyone has to be ok with their partner hanging out at the local titty bar. But conflating personal feelings and observations — which are real and valid and imprint — with inherent meaning is a sure fire way to cause more problems, not strengthen a relationship.
Much more was said about this topic but Ally and myself (and guys on Reddit). You can read the full piece right –> here. What do you think?
(why is “the pink pussy cat” ok when it’s a cartoon, but not when it’s a club?)
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Get Exposure: A Sociologist Explores Sex, Society, and Adult Entertainment on Amazon and CT.com