Wellington, April 06: Sex researcher Bettina Arndt has come under fire over her book `The Sex Diaries: Why Women Go Off Sex and Other Bedroom Battles`, which suggests women to go for sex even when they don`t feel like doing it.
The book has caused a stir in Australia, sparking dozens of blog posts and stories in newspapers, magazines, and on television.
Bloggers have dubbed Arndt a `rape cheerleader` and called her `yes` message `marital rape`.
One critic wrote: "Don`t worry about why women aren`t interested in sex any more, just pressure them into it by threatening the future happiness of their families, and pretty soon their libido will be bouncing right back."
Prue Hyman, a feminist economist and adjunct professor at Victoria University, has not read the book but was aware of the debate.
Hyman expressed concern at the idea of men or women having sex just to keep their partner happy.
"If a few women are thinking, `Well, maybe I`m saying no automatically when actually it would be all right`` then that`s fine. [But] if it makes people feel guilty or do things they don`t want to do, then I don`t like it so much," Hyman said.
Australian feminist Eva Cox has weighed in against Arndt, saying that by bedtime many women just want to sleep.
"After an evening of organising kids, dinner, the shopping, the washing, the homework, etc, maybe [women] are too tired to want sex," Cox said.
However, Arndt believes that some of her more strident critics are missing the point.
"I`m not saying `just do it, lie back and suffer, lie there like a log` I`m saying that if you put the canoe in the water and start paddling, the chances are you may well enjoy the experience. Just see, just try paddling and see what happens," the Sunday Star-Times quoted her, as saying.
"Men must `just do it` too. And `just do it` doesn`t mean having intercourse it can mean just giving someone pleasure. So it`s a two-way street it just so happens that it`s much more common for women to go off sex than men," she added.
Arndt said many members of the public were far from outraged by her book in fact it had reignited sparks in bedrooms.
"The letters coming in are amazing... They are getting more sex! There are some men saying the drought is breaking," she said.
Arndt`s book, released here in May, is based on the sex diaries of 98 Australian couples some newly in love, some in stable but sexless marriages.