Robert Henley’s article in Atomage 11 which looked at sexual attitudes and psychology attracted many letters and the lively interest of our readers. Here are two very different reactions:

I quite agree with Robert Henley (Why Some Women Won’t) that modern sex-life as it is presented by movies, magazines and literature is as hypocritical as the morals of the Victorians. We have dropped from one extreme into another. Moreover this change in public morals came far too quickly and abruptly. The result is that many women have the impression that they cannot compete with this new seductive and very sexy image of the “modern female”.

This leaves both men and women unsatisfied men, because they become aware of the difference between the reality they have to cope with and the dreams they are continuously offered by a whole industry – women, because they are under the continuous pressure to live up to the demanded standards. Publicity threatens them that they will not find or will lose a partner if they are not willing to play the games.

I think this is one important reason why women come to hate sex. They ‘perform’ sex rather than enjoy it. In such a case it is very difficult for us rubber-lovers to persuade our partners to share our interests. Even if you get your partner to wear a sexy rubber or leather costume she will feel uneasy, because she does not, and cannot, identify with this rubber or leather queen.

Even supposing you manage to persuade your girl-friend or your wife to wear those beautiful garments there is still another problem to cope with. You don’t want just to look at the fascinating person you have created, you want to make love to her in the climax of your dreams – it would make you extremely happy if this heavenly creature took up the initiative, started to seduce you, played around with you. (Not on every occasion, but from time to time.)

But there is another difficulty. Most women are brought up to play a socially clearly defined role which is quite different from the masculine role. (Girls don’t play rude games, they behave always correctly, politely, even humbly; they are trained to do the housework, they are kept away from the hard outside world, they are asked to do what they are told and so on). This is even worse if the father is a dominant, demanding figure. Under such circumstances, the girl is not able to develop her self-confidence, and she will always look up to men as higher beings. Later, in marriage, she will give her body humbly to her husband, but she would not dare to demand something for herself. There are too many inhibitions and fears. It is not that she doesn’t like sex, but she is afraid of it. If her husband or boyfriend asks her to become active she will not be able to respond to his wishes. If she does so to please him it is not a joy but an effort for her and, if this happens repeatedly, she will become more and more cramped and anxious. The feeling that she will never be able to please her husband is steadily growing and sex – in the end – becomes a torture.

On the whole, I would say that the problem is not “rubber” or “leather” but the mental attitude towards sex. If a woman is able to enjoy sex without fear or inhibitions she will – in most cases – also be prepared to wear leather or rubber. After all, why shouldn’t she do it? The common experience, the utmost intimacy of sharing these delights, heightens and deepens a relationship far beyond the usual point.

– M.B. (Switzerland)