Culture Apr 9, 2019 3:09 PM EST

The new sex doll craze proves we are in the midst of a sex panic

It’s official. We are not just living in a “sex recession,” we are living through a sex panic.

The new sex doll craze proves we are in the midst of a sex panic
Libby Emmons Brooklyn, NY
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This article was published more than 1 year ago, information might not be accurate.

A brand new sex doll service, Ultimate Dolls, has set up shop down the street from The Post Millennial offices in Montreal.

It’s official. We are not just living in a “sex recession,” we are living through a sex panic. When people would prefer not only to pay for sex with strangers, but to pay for sex with strange, inanimate dolls, it becomes clear that basic human connection is in trouble.

Sex doll brothels have been on the rise worldwide, and soon it will be commonplace for young men to come of age in such establishments.  

Recent studies have shown that sexual activity is on the decline, especially amongst millennials. The Washington Post reports that “the share of people who are having relations once a week or more is on a downward trajectory: from 51 percent in 1996 to 39 percent today.” We at The Post Millennial recently published a plea for young people to fall in love and have sex again.

There are loads of “good reasons” to engage in sex with dolls. It’s easy and they don’t say no. They won’t #metoo you. There’s no reason to actually say anything at all, or buy dinner, or even swipe right or send a flirty emoji. There’s no reason to be shy with a sex doll, no worry that the doll won’t find you attractive, or won’t laugh at your jokes.

Just like the automated kiosks at McDonald’s, where we can get our Happy Meals and shakes without the inconvenience of dealing with a human being, sex dolls provide speedy service.

In a recent BBC segment about the proliferation of sex doll brothels in England, a reporter interviewed a young man about his tendency to pay for sex with dolls. The man had a girlfriend, and a regular sex life, but still, he preferred to rent a silicone replica of a female.

“It’s very different,” he says, his voice disguised and his face hidden. “A prostitute is a real person. And can judge you for the way you look, or for fantasies you have. A doll can’t do that. With a doll all I had to think about was my own satisfaction. I felt more free.”

This is basically just fancy masturbation, but to a certain extent it is perceived by the user as engaging in sexual activity with another entity. What’s lacking is the co-operative energy that exemplifies healthy, loving sex. After all, teamwork is the dream work.

The concept that people should be free to do as they please is marvelously individualistic, but what happens when that freedom borders on harming others, or harming oneself? Is it a net good to indulge desires that are harmful to oneself?

This question is in play for all of those who get busy with lifelike dolls. We can tell ourselves that these interactions are devoid of emotion, and maybe they are—for now. But what is not absent in our pursuits of silicone flesh is anticipation. If a person enjoys these encounters, we can imagine that they look forward to their appointment with the doll with relish and excitement. We can imagine that a portion of their fantasy life is taken up with the imagining of their own fingers caressing the supple material, kissing the soft lips or toes, the smell of the cleansing fluid that’s used to keep these things disease free, or the feel of the synthetic hair on their naked skin.

Sex with a doll is not only the act, but all of the sexual energy that enters into our consideration for the act. The fantasy, the anticipation, the memory, the sensation, the desire. Because those who fuck dolls do desire the dolls, and all the accoutrements of doll fucking enter their sexual life.

The dolls will not stay inanimate forever. Sex robots are on the way, and these will be more than rentable objects for a casual screw, they will be companions. We will imbue them with love and affection, imagining that they return those feelings. The more anthropomorphic they become, the easier it will be to trick ourselves.

What’s missing is that human beings need touch. It’s not enough to give over emotional lives to anthropomorphized beings, no matter how intimate and sensual a place they have in a person’s life. There is life in human touch, and it must not be forgotten or dropped to the wayside simply because it’s too inconvenient, or too scary to share vulnerabilities with another person.

The sex doll craze may be a sign of the times, but it’s also a sign of defeat. We’ve given up on courtship because we’ve given up on each other. It appears we’ve lost the hope of connecting with our fellow humans because of “safety.” We’re so safe now that we don’t dare to try to make love to each other anymore. What progress.

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