Alyssa Milano’s #SexStrike is concerning for a lot of reasons, starting with how only women are centered in the debate. It also ignores an unfortunate reality. It is simply not an option for those in an abusive relationship.
There are many good reasons why Milano’s sex strike sparked a controversy on social media. Unfortunately, much of the discussion ignores how this choice doesn’t play out practically in the real world, and is simply not an option for those in an abusive relationship.
It also centers women in a conversation that must strive to be more inclusive. If you are concerned about topics like abortion, and intimate partner violence, move away from centering women and include others who also deserve to be part of that conversation. We must become allies not adversaries.
Apart from being grossly manipulative, this strike strikes me as naive in how power dynamics work in actual relationships. It reinforces the notion that marginalized bodies are commodities. While sex strikes have been known to work when seeking a specific goal, bartering sexual favors in exchange for recognition of equality strikes me as unattainable.
Likewise, a stance asking marginalized people to fraternize only with those of like mind ignores the reality that “woke” individuals are sometimes not much better than their counterparts. It’s easy to proclaim you are an ally. Actions always speak louder than words. Far too often someone reveals their true colors only after they have attained their goal. Once in an abusive relationship, it is incredibly difficult to get out.