I hadn’t heard of the Fifty Shades Trilogy until a Facebook friend responded to my status update: “In need of an escapist, trashy, romance novel. Must NOT be thought-provoking.”

I Googled it. The hottest summer read, apparently. Sure, an erotic novel will do the trick.

I spent the next week writhing on the couch or on my bed, my roommate intrigued by my squeals. She snatched the first book right out from under me and finished the third before I was done with the second. We were a house of red-hot women for a couple weeks, dangerously close to doing someone we might regret. I held myself back, but she is younger.

DominatrixShe texts, “What’s the name of the lady who waxes you?”

When I get home she tells me she’s leaving for the weekend to visit a “friend” in Santa Barbara.

“Ohhhhhhh. So that’s why you got waxed,” I say.

She smiles. “Maybe he’ll tie me up.” I envy her abandon but am content with the last three chapters and a night of Red Box. I’ve been sporting 80s bush for several months now.

But a question niggles me: Does my roommate really want to get tied up?

And another: Is it really the spanking that has women across the world all hot for their own Christian Grey?

The first question is easy to answer. “No, Amy, I was kidding about being tied up,” my roommate explains when I bombard her with questions Monday morning.

The second question is more universal, but just as easily answered. While there are women who like to be whipped (typically those who have suffered some kind of trauma) the majority of women with Christian-fever aren’t turned on by the masochism. They’re turned on by:

#1 – the alpha-maleness of it all

#2 – the poor, broken puppy that needs fixing

#3 – Christian’s devoted, all-consuming love for Average Anna

Fifty Shades speaks to what women want and need. What women have lost sight of:

  • A man who doesn’t need to suck on his mother’s tit when shit hits the fan.
  • A man who wants to possess and consume them (in a safe, contractual manner, of course).
  • A man whose first priority is to protect them, but who respects their boundaries and is teachable.
  • Hell, a man who loves like a cheesy, romance novel…minus the whips and chains.

This parallels the Twilight phenomenon. What woman didn’t go gaga over wise, over-protective, fuck-with-my-girl-and-you’re-dead, Edward? Plus, they’re both hot.

#1 The Alpha Man:

Men are confused about what women want. Women are even more confused. Men these days are watered-down versions of men – and women have sprayed the hose.

Women, PUT THE HOSE DOWN!

Let a man be a man. Don’t let a man take away your rights, order you around, abuse you, yell at you, manipulate you…but let a man take the reins, at least every now and then. You like when Christian does it; you like when Edward does it; you’ll like when your guy does it too. You crave it, even if you don’t know it.

Let him pick out your outfit for the night. Let him tell the waitress what you want for dinner. Let him open the door for you. Let him make his own decisions…and some of yours, even if you know best. Let him adore you. Let him buy you clothes…and if he can’t afford clothes, then socks. Don’t be threatened when he tries to tell you what to do. Consider what he says, it just might work. And if it doesn’t, speak gently.

Know that a true alpha won’t feel the need to exert his alphaness. He is King of the Den and doesn’t need to prove it. He will take care of you…sit back, relax and let him.

#2 The Broken Man:

Oh, ladies. Why do we do this to ourselves? We just love to fix things. Stop it. Just stop it.

Author E.L. James has done us a disservice. Wonderful Christian’s love is so pure and expansive he is able to combat his issues (his bottomless, deeply disturbing issues) and love Average Anna vanilla style with an occasional erotic spanking thrown into the mix. This is fantasy, my loves. You will be able to find a fucked-up Christian of your own (and if you can’t, I can introduce you to some), but your fucked-up Christian won’t ever get over his issues. E-V-E-R. You aren’t enough to fix him. The girl before you wasn’t and the girl after you won’t be. He will only leave you heart-broken and with a red bottom.

Also, Edward is a vampire. Vampires don’t exist. So stop leaving your windows open at night and inviting them in…you’re only going to get a homeless man. Unless…I’m the only one who does this…

#3 The Lover

We deserve nothing less than a man who loves us and will do anything for us, barring that which goes against his integrity and truth. We are queens, and deserve to be treated as such. And remember, men are confused, so help them understand how to treat you like the queen you are, even if you believe you are as average as Anna. I say there is no average woman among us.

And if you still insist on being tied up, then have him shackle you with the softest silk rope money can buy – no hard, cold cuffs for you, Princess.

Written by Amy
I am a film, TV and voiceover actress and a fiction and nonfiction writer. You've seen and heard me on television, movies, radio ads and video games. I'm the author of 5 books and counting, and my award-winning short stories have been featured in acclaimed literary journals.

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