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We often complain about men’s seductive ways – but they are not the only ones. Too many women make it their duty to seduce men and break up marriages. While countless men feel it is natural and manly to have many partners and irresponsibly father countless children, many women welcome these men into their arms and are themselves cunning, seductive, and immoral.

Many women are like a much-needed mirage in a hot, sunny desert. From a distance, they lure thirsty men to their sides by their seductive beauty, borderline friendships, and cunning behavior. These men are mesmerized by the seemly pleasurable deeds, but are awakened to a painful world of cold love and abusive power. These foolish men are then led to the slaughter like dumb goats. When they awaken, they are caught between a wife and a pregnant lover, or a committed marital partner and possessive secret lover. These women know that men can see better than they can hear, so they entice them in a world of visual sensuality and pleasure. When it is all over (if it is ever over), hearts are torn apart, and permanent scars are left behind. Men, beware of these wolves in sheep clothing – seductive women.

Why do some women act this way? Is it because they are sexually or love addicted? Whatever it is, it is not healthy. According to the National Council on Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity (NCSA), “Some women go beyond these culturally-sanctioned behaviors and use sex compulsively as a means of gaining power and love. The idea of being ‘love addicted’ may be preferred by sexually addicted women because it fits the romantic, nurturer model of women, whereas the term ‘sex addict’ connotes an image of a ‘nymphomaniac,’ ‘slut,’ or ‘whore.’”

The following are a few of the behavior patterns of sexually addictive women:

• Changing relationships to control sexual fantasy and/or activities.

• Swearing off relationships only to give in to the next “right” lover.

• Breaking promises to self or others to stop abusive fantasy or sexual behaviors.

• Workaholism, overeating, or reading romance novels to take the place of a sexual relationship.

Some women will continue their behavior even when there are great negative consequences. This may result in unplanned pregnancies, abortions, sexually transmitted diseases, or violence and shame resulting from sexual activities. Other results include decreased productivity at work due to sexual behavior, relationship problems resulting from extramarital affairs or excessive time spent on sex-related activities, depression related to inability to change sexual patterns or their consequences, substance abuse or eating disorders to numb shame, and other negative feelings related to sexual activities.

NCSA explains further some of the sexually addictive behavior patterns in women. They may include excessive flirting, dancing, or personal grooming to be seductive; wearing provocative clothing whenever possible (a form of exhibitionism); changing one’s appearance via excessive dieting, excessive exercise, and/or reconstructive surgery to be seductive; exposing oneself in a window or car; making sexual advances to younger siblings, clients, or others in subordinate power positions; seeking sexual partners in high-risk locations; multiple extramarital affairs; disregard of appropriate sexual boundaries – considering a married man, one’s boss, or one’s personal physician as appropriate objects of romantic involvement; trading sex for drugs, help, affection, money, social access, or power; having sex with someone they just met at a party, bar, or on the internet (forms of anonymous sex); compulsive masturbation; and exchanging sex for pain or pain for sex.

Most seductive and sexually addictive women have not had parental examples of how to be intimate and loving in a nonsexual way. Most seductive women come from dysfunctional homes where love is not easily expressed. Research has shown that there is often a combination of rigidity and lack of emotional support in the sex addict’s family of origin. The majority of female sex addicts were sexually abused in childhood – 78 percent in one study.

A major problem is that too many of our Bahamian and West Indian girls are being raised in very strict families, with a lack of affection, care and understanding. Sometimes their so-called Christian families hide their sexually or verbally abusive activity with their children behind the closed doors of spiritual holiness. No one ever knows about the terrible family secret.

Katherine Kersten, a commentator for National Public Radio (NPR), wrote the commentary titled “Cosmopolitan’s Philosophy of Unfettered Freedom” – it was in response to the constant message that Cosmopolitan (which is no longer in print) gave about sex, love, flirting, etc. The following is what she wrote: “So, why do women buy this magazine? Do they actually enjoy gazing at scantily clad “babes”? Are they really intent on exploring the pros and cons of group sex?

“I don’t think so. My guess is that the appeal of Cosmo’s pictures and articles lies not so much in their content, as in the philosophy of life they convey. Their real function is to signal to readers – on every page – that happiness comes from breaking rules and rejecting limits, including traditional social constraints on dress, speech, and behavior. Away with the ‘Thou shalt nots’ that have repressed us for millennia! ‘Cosmo’ trumpets unfettered freedom as women’s birthright – ‘Thou shalt do as thou damn well please.’

“This is a seductive philosophy, but it has a catch. For, if ‘freedom’ is women’s birthright, it is also men’s. And as the last inhibition bites the dust, women are finding they don’t much like some of the things men do when released from social constraints and expectations. The result? A new breed of ‘Thou shalt nots’- from sexual harassment policies in the workplace (‘No compliments on hair or dress, if you know what’s good for you’), to the mandatory ‘date rape’ seminars that greet unsuspecting college freshmen.’”

Too many of our women, like many of our men, are being driven by their selfishness and inordinate desires. They have no moral stamina. They willfully ignore traditional family values just to please self. They disrespect friends and family to gain power and control through their sexual behavior. In the name of freedom, they exploit their bodies and the hearts of other people, sometimes not even letting the threat of deadly diseases stop them in their tracks.

What a sad but true picture about many of our women today. They are blinded by self, their need for passion, and perhaps their own inadequacy to keep a loving relationship. They medicate themselves with sex and love affairs. Men, beware of such women. Do not allow yourselves to be lured into dark corners of uncertainty. “Keep the lights on around you.” Protect your mind and body by being open and honest with yourself and others. Seductive women, seek help. There are professionals who can help you. Let’s work together in helping to end this cycle of pain and abuse in our society.

• Barrington H. Brennen is a marriage and family therapist. Send your questions or comments to
question@soencouragement.org or write to P.O. Box CB-13019, Nassau, The Bahamas, or visit www.soencouragement.org or call 242-327-1980 or 242-477-4002. 

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