Love Italian Style: Puttana in the Bedroom, Chapters 13 & 14

3YePrqRIt’s time to talk about sex. Something that Melissa can never seem to talk enough about. But never fear, she assures us, if you’re a whore in the bedroom, your husband will never cheat. Ever. This is a fun section.

Melissa kicks off the introduction with these words of wisdom,

To be a puttana in marriage, a woman needs to keep herself in shape. She has to be seductive. She must be willing to try new things for her husband’s pleasure and her own. And, most important, she has to be available for sex.

The way I see it, if a wife is a puttana, her husband will never feel the urge to go outside the marriage to actual whores, or strip clubs. He won’t hit on women in bars, or drool over his friend’s girlfriends or the secretary. He’ll rush home to his wife, who makes sure he’ll have a good time (the best time) in the comfort of his own home.

So why do men cheat? Their wives weren’t good enough whores in the bedroom. Glad we got that cleared up. Here I thought the reasons why men cheat were varied and complicated. But it’s not! A man who cheats just has a lazy wife who doesn’t want sex.

Joe quickly pipes up to back up this fact. He educates,

A man will never go outside his marriage for sex unless he’s not getting it at home. I know a guy whose wife refused to do it. He wound up cheating. They went to a psychiatrist to try and work things out. My friend told the shrink everything. The wife agreed. She had no interest in sex, and wasn’t going to change. After a few sessions, the psychiatrist flat out said, “I got no help for you, buddy.” A couple that stops having sex needs help. But if the wife won’t change, they’re beyond it.

First off, a psychiatrist is a doctor specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses and they can also prescribes psychiatric medication. A couple with marital trouble should have been going to a counselor, psychologist or therapist. But anyway.

It really makes it quite clear that women are responsible for their men staying faithful. If a man isn’t entertained enough or getting enough sex, he just has to cheat. He has to get sex from someone, so if his wife isn’t DTF then he has to run to the nearest girl to fulfill his needs. Not his fault. He’s just doing whatever he has to in order to survive.

Don’t either of them realize that there are women who have done everything possible to keep a man faithful and committed and nothing has worked? Also, this section has no consideration for women who have physical or emotional problems with sex. Women have to give men sex or suffer the consequences. If a woman doesn’t want sex, the man has to leave. Simple as that.

And of course, this doesn’t even take into consideration that there are some men who have intimacy problems or emotional issues. In their traditional marriage, all men want sex all the time. That’s the major facet of their lives. In order to be a real man, you have to order your life around your penis.

But all of this is lost on the couple. Melissa makes another joke that Joe has to have sex at least once every other day or suffer a painful demise from blue balls. The joke doesn’t get any funnier or lighten the fact that she is his personal sex doll.

Moving on, Melissa starts talking about her body. Yet again. She brags,

I’m proud of how I look, and not embarrassed to say so. Caring about your looks is superficial only if you do it for shallow reasons. I work on my outside to gain confidence on the inside.

What? Confidence isn’t something that should be contingent on your outside. A confident woman is confident no matter if she’s in tip top shape or has stopped going to the gym. Also, the idea that caring about how you look needs to be justified is so silly. Everyone needs to take care of themselves and feel comfortable with their appearance.

But while Melissa makes it sound like she works on her body for herself, a huge chunk of this work is obviously for Joe. She writes,

When we’re in bed, he [Joe] objectifies the hell out of me — and I love every minute of it. In or out of bed, I want to feel like I’m the best thing he’s ever seen. I want his eyes on me. Being his sex object takes effort. I put in the time and reap the rewards.

It’s one thing for a woman to be proud of being a sex object and wanting to be objectified by her husband. But it’s totally another for this woman to write a book advising other women to do the same and frame it around the idea that her marriage is successful because of this. Melissa might not see anything wrong with her husband not seeing her as a person. But a lot of women want to be seen as sexual creatures with feelings and intelligence as well.

Anyway, Melissa then talks about how she appreciates Joe’s body and mentions that he used to be a stripper. Apparently, he still loves stripping. Not something I’d see as a career path for a traditionally manly man so manly that could choke on his own testosterone, but whatever. Imagine if their daughter ever wanted to became a stripper. Scandal!

Moving on, Melissa starts droning on about her fitness regime and how she works with a personal trainer and exactly how she tones her ass, so on, so forth. She does squats and leg lifts and bicep curls and other shit that no one really cares about.

But just when things are getting boring, Melissa drives right back into her ancient gender roles and writes this little aside.

Things not to do in front of your husband

Double standard alert. Joe can and does a lot of the things on this list in front of me. I don’t necessarily like it, but I give him a pass. He’s part animal anyway. But I was raised to keep my bodily functions to myself. Ladies are discreet about such things. It goes back to the idea of dating your husband… Don’t let politeness die, and never let him see you…

1. Poop. Moms, you know the book Everyone Poops, right? It’s wrong. Girls don’t poop. Me, never have. Never will. It just doesn’t happen. Or, that’s what Joe thinks! We’ve been married for nine years, and he has never once seen or smelled my business. How have I pulled this off? I don’t do it when he’s around or awake. In an emergency, I have my ways of pooping so he won’t hear, smell or see. It’s a challenge. Joe has asked me, in complete seriousness, “Do you poop?” He can’t catch me. He always tries. He springs in on me when I’ve been in the bathroom for a while, only to find me tweezing my eyebrows. Ha!

Okay, she went there, now we have to talk about this. First off, I hate to be the one to break this to Melissa, but women are people. Women poop. It’s completely normal and natural. What isn’t normal or natural is making a challenge out of ensuring your husband doesn’t think that you have regular bodily functions or being so proud of the fact that she has put so much energy into this goal.

Also, how does she manage to achieve this with someone that she’s living with? She can manage to hold her bowels until he falls asleep or leaves the house? That’s not even healthy. What about when they’re on vacation and in a hotel room with one small bathroom? How does she manage to keep up the illusion that her body doesn’t produce excrement?

And what does she gain by doing this? What does she get out of having her husband think that she doesn’t poop? Is this an extreme manifestation of her need to be perfect? She has to be so perfect that she can’t even let people think that she has bowel movements? Why does she have to make people think that she’s not a human being?

Who the fuck knows? She continues,

2. Fart. I like to call it puff. The only time I would puff in front of Joe would be outside, in a tornado, with him wearing noise-canelling headphones and a clothespin on his nose.

Of course. She doesn’t poop, why would she fart? But again, I have to ask how she manages this. She has never had an upset stomach and things have just happened? How does she avoid all of these natural functions? At this point, I have to wonder if she just thinks that Joe has never smelled her poop or heard her fart and she is just living in a fantasy land where she believes that she doesn’t shit or ever have gas.

Moving swiftly on,

3. Change a tampon. I have no words. I can’t even. This is not okay. Just NO. Talk about destroying the mystery. And don’t forget to flush them, please! When men see blood, they think something died.

First off, never flush a tampon. It will clog the plumbing. Just throw them away. But anyway, women have periods. No amount of denial or flushing is going to change that. Men need to deal with the fact that most women bleed out of their vaginas once a month. It doesn’t matter if men think that it’s yucky or gross. Men do gross stuff all of the time and women are just told to put up with it. So guess what, return the favor.

4. Pick… your nose, your eye gunk, an ingrown hair. A lady does not dig for gold. I’m grossed out when Joe cleans house in front of me.

Of course it’s gross when he does it, but it’s completely unacceptable for her to do it. Because she’s a woman and women can’t be icky. They have to be perfect and amazing at all times.

The next few sections are painfully boring bits about Melissa’s diet. She writes about how she eats, what she eats, why she eats, how she handles cravings, fast foods, liquid calories, cake and splurges. Which this is all well and good for her, her exact diet will probably do very little to help other women who don’t have her same body type, lifestyle and health concerns.

But not to be deterred by reality, Melissa continues. She advises women not to let themselves go. But to instead, “Keep love alive. Use deodorant.” She talks about the unfortunate women who let their skin get dry, let their armpits get covered in stubble, etc. No woman should allow herself to get comfortable with her husband. As much as she might think that he loves her, if he sees armpit stubble, he’s still thinking that she’s gross.

Chapter 14 is entitled Our Version of Foreplay. Melissa launches into some more advice on how to create sexual tension and keep your man interested and blah, blah, blah. She then writes this strange statement, “Since the days of Salome and Cleopatra, seduction has been a woman’s job.” Uh, Salome is believed to have led to the murder of John the Baptist. How is she exactly a woman to hold up as an example of femininity and seduction?

Melissa then writes about sending flirty texts to your husband. She pens, “I wouldn’t write anything that would make me die of shame if someone read it over his shoulder. I never send photos. I don’t trust him not to show someone.” As much as she rambles on about trust, you’d think that she would trust her husband with a racy photo. But whatever.

Her suggestions for sexy texts include the following:

“I’m wearing red underwear. Early dinner tonight?”
“You have no idea what I’m going to do to you when you get home.”
“I want you.”

My apologizes for putting such pornographic content into this blog. I’m sure a great many of the readers are now scandalized. Stay with me though.

Joe pops in to share some male wisdom,

Men are visual creatures. If we see something we like, we attack. A lion sees a gazelle, he attacks. His jowls are dripping and he can’t wait to tear at that gazelle with his teeth. But he’ll wait for a while, just watching it. His appetite is stimulated through his eyes. Watching first prolongs the thrill of the hunt.

It’s so sexy when a man compares desire to a lion murdering a gazelle. It’s so sensual to visualize the dripping jowls and sharp teeth tearing into the flesh of an animal that had just been stalked and think that he believes this to be downright erotic. But this isn’t the last time Joe equates violence with sex. But that’s coming up.

Melissa then talks about how important smell is to her. She’s already established how her husband has never smelled her business. She goes on to talk about all of the various things that she smells throughout the day and how happy it makes her.

She ends the chapter by talking about how important it is to touch your spouse. Radical idea, right? Stay with me. She writes that soft, affectionate touches show your man that you care about him and are attracted to him. Ground breaking ideas, I know. Now, on to the next chapter.

To read all review entries of Love Italian Style, click here. Blogs are in reverse chronological order.