I remember raving to someone about how amazing my new man was, how charming, how sexy, how romantic.
‘He’s seducing you’. Came the response.
‘Oh good’, I thought.
After all, so much lingerie, so many perfumes are sold on their powers of seduction. Seduction was great; a dream come true. I wanted to be seduced. Being seduced was seductive, all my erotic and romantic fantasies coming true at last.
Alas. He went on to be emotionally and psychologically abusive.
He had indeed seduced me, I just didn’t know what the real meaning of seduction was.
So here it is, in case you are seduced:
‘To lure or entice …away from obligations or proper behaviour….’beguile, tempt, mislead’ (vocabulary.com)
‘To make someone feel attracted to you and want to have sex with you, often someone younger or less experienced’
‘To persuade or cause someone to do something that they would not usually consider doing’ (Cambridge dictionary)
Etymology – from the Latin Seductio ‘the act of leading aside’ (Mirriam-Webster)
‘Making you do something that you would not otherwise do’
Synonyms – ‘tempt, lure, entice’ (Collins)
In other words trickery, deception, manipulation and lies. Power-plays and preying on those more vulnerable or inexperienced.
Seduction is rife. Marketing makes money from seducing us into buying things we would never normally consider or need. Music videos of seductive half naked women normalise the commodification of bodies and the desirability of seductive behaviour. Seductive clothes, seductive songs, how to seduce someone, how to chat them up. Seductive fresh bread smells as I entered the supermarket early this morning. Seductive packaging. Seductive homes bragging perfection. The seduction of the perfect; perfect Christmas, perfect lover, perfect family, perfect figure, perfect job.
Seduction is bullshit. Pretense. Artifice. Idealisation.
Seduction is dangerous, it enchants us and bewitches us into overdrafts, into one more drink for the road, into he loves me really, into appearances mattering more than substance.
Give me straight talking, down to earth, uncomfortable, unpredictable, outrageous, challenging, amusing, and, if necessary, brutal honesty every time.