The Achievements of Impotence – Free Ebook

When a man can’t sustain an erection a search for explanations begins. In our culture most of these explanations tend to be punitive, humiliating, and catastrophic for both parties. Do you even love me anymore? Is that why you couldn’t get it up? Are you not attracted to me? “I’ve been doing some research, reading some Freud, and” “something happened in your childhood; I don’t know, it’s your Mums fault, but you’re not right.” “You’re really not right”. “John, have you been taking you vitamins?” “Hmm? No. I’m going to the chemist and we’ll get you some more.” “I think he must be gay!” “All the signs are there.” The guilty men, for their part, are often hopeless at coming up with any better explanations. “You’re very attractive and Iove you, and” “It’s just, that’s not how it works, and” “just…let’s…I can’t just…” “You know, it’s just been a really tough time at work” “there’s a presentation and…” “Well what if it’s you, have you thought about that?” “Did you consider that-that maybe it’s something that you’re doing? You’re putting me off.” “You know, it is not… click your fingers and… here we go… not a magic… wand” “It’s…” “You don’t understand” To help reframe what impotence is and means We would be wiser to turn to some figures, from the world of culture For the poet Charles Baudelaire impotence is an achievement of the intellect For Marcel Proust impotence is a symptom of deep politeness It springs from a solicitude about For Stendhal men who’ve been impotent should be celebrated They are going to be self-reflective, modest, able to laugh at themselves And probably very interesting And for Montaigne The impotent man should be celebrated for being sweetly unsure of himself and touchingly uncertain of his prerogatives We live in a culture that has unfortunately come to see hardness as the ultimate proof of love and cant see virtues in anything else But one shouldn’t only medicalise and stigmatise impotence We can afford to see it as connected up with some deeply charming and occasionally interesting traits that partners might come to respect and be curious about As ever, it’s the job of culture to re-frame out experiences and render us a little less lovely and persecuted

Leave a Reply