I was reading a particular book last week, and while the scene was H-O-T, I had to stop halfway through and walk away for completely unsexy reasons. A little brain worm had entered my thoughts, you see. The book was fantasy, something that would never happen in real life – I get that. However, I had to stop and think about if it did happen in real life.
So often we read a romance book where the hero throws the heroine up against a wall, rips her clothes off … and you get where this is going. Because you’re reading it from the chick’s point of view, it’s hot, you know she likes it despite some reservations nagging at her, it’s consentual. Pause and reread the whole bit, did he ever ask her if it was okay? Did they have the "safe sex" conversation?
Rationalizing romance is an exercise in pointlessness, I know, but there are times when I read something and the thought that this would never fly in real life jerks me out of the story.
Have you ever been kissed? Hugged? Or had sex in wild passion? Unexpected seduction?
Of those, I’ve only been unexpectedly hugged and kissed. Hugs I don’t mind. I’m a hugger, what can I say? But I have been an unwilling participant in a few kisses I didn’t see coming. It’s not as sexy or arousing as you think it could be.
In one instance, I’d been seeing a particular guy for a few weeks. I liked him, but I had some serious reservations about how long the relationship was going to last and what we had in common. But he was hot and when we clicked it was great. One day he decided it was time for some hot and heavy making out, trouble was, at the time I was trying to figure out how to get rid of him and break it off. He couldn’t have known that. In one move he pushed me back against the fridge in my kitchen and proceeded to kiss me.
It wasn’t sexy. It was, quite frankly, pissing me off and caused me to do a little panicing.
Another time I got drive-by-kissed by a cute guy in public at a party. It was awkward, and again, ticked me off.
Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t find forced seduction scenes as appealing. Sure in the moment they’re hot and heavy, but as we so often illumiate with our characters, afterwards it’s a clusterfuck. In fiction, you have leeway of brushing it all aside because the writer knows the characters and is going to give the reader a HEA. But does that make it okay? Wiping the slate clean like that without addressing what is and is not okay wouldn’t be acceptable in real life, why are we fine with it in fiction?
Because we know the ending before it begins. The hero and heroine are uniquely perfect for one another. They’ll defeat the bad guy. Love will conquor all. There might be skeletons in the closet, deeds to overcome and a host of issues, but it’s ultimately a happy ending. Sometimes reading a bit of fiction is better than real life. I kind of wish the guy who kissed me in my kitchen had actually taken the time to get to know me, to connect with me before he made a heavy handed move that got him booted from my life. (There was way more going on, but that goes off topic.) If you’ve found your real life hero, you’re a lucky duck. For the rest of us, there’s hope right? I’m okay with hope.
And this has been your randomly ramble blog for a Monday.