Kim Kardashian is the sex symbol of our era — she didn’t wear Marilyn’s dress for nothing. Her body has been designed for public consumption in just about every format imaginable: book, Instagram, magazine cover, perfume bottle, sex tape. Kim knows that her body sells, and that’s exactly what she’s going to do with it, whether it’s via SKIMS, SKKN, Kimoji, or the myriad other brands she’s launched.
But when it comes to her actual sex life — other than the sex tape, of course — Kim has historically been tight-lipped. In 2018, she told Richardson magazine that while her public persona is “wild, sexual,” she’s “actually uncomfortable when I talk about sex... I’m more conservative when it comes to that.”
“I’m vain like that,” she continued. “I can go on a set and be fully naked in front of 50 people doing a shoot, but if I’m one on one, intimate in bed, I’m, like, shy and insecure.” She pretty much never spoke publicly about sex with ex-husband Kris Humphries, and when it came to Kanye, almost any mention of it related to conceiving children. (That includes her famous line about them having sex 500 times a day.) For all of Kim’s willingness to let others project their desires onto her, she has rarely been clear about her own.
The vibes, however, must be shifting, because Kim has spent the past few months making it incredibly, astonishingly clear that she is fucking.
In case you didn’t have internet access these past few months, the person she’s fucking is none other than her new boyfriend, Pete Davidson. Kim’s been shockingly open about their relationship on her new Hulu show The Kardashians, starting when she shared that she’d reached out to a Saturday Night Live producer for Pete’s number because “I heard about this BDE. I need to get out there. I need to just, like, jump start my... I was just basically DTF." Since then, she’s mentioned that Pete suggesting they get ice cream at Thrifty made her “so fucking horny.” And perhaps the spiciest moment came courtesy of The Kardashians Season 2 trailer, in which Kim — in front of many, many people — asks Pete if he wants to shower with her.
In fact, Pete’s “debut” on the show came in the Season 1 finale, where he appears off-screen and Kim introduces him to a producer who she says has probably seen her vagina. “More than me?” Pete asks. Kim laughs. “Not more than you… but she’s probably seen it,” she says.
It’s hard to imagine an exchange like that between Kim and Kanye, who seemed to communicate mostly about fame, power, and Balmain.
It’s easy to assume that Pete’s aforementioned BDE might be responsible for the change, but it’s (not a pun) deeper than that. Divorce-era Kim has gone from a sex object to a sexual being. Her dynamic with Kanye was all about her being on a pedestal. Before they were together, he rapped about wanting her and her body. Once he was with her, he wanted sovereignty over her body, her image. At their wedding, he gifted her a nude painting of herself titled “Perfect Bitch” and said she was his “ideal art.” He expressed a desire for control over her sexuality — he said her sexiness in her infamous Met Gala wet corset dress “hurt [his] soul.” The outfit was hot, he said, but, “it’s hot for who, though?” He saw her as an object whose sexuality he should have a say over, whose functions were to provide for him. Kim bought into this — for a while.
Kanye’s protectiveness and possessiveness of Kim and her sexuality was clearly stifling her. She’d been fighting against that from sources outside of her marriage for a long time: In 2016, she penned an essay about slut-shaming and mom-shaming, arguing that being a mother and being a sexual person should not be mutually exclusive. She snapped back at Kanye about the corset dress with, “You built me up to be this sexy person and have confidence… just because you're on your journey and you're on a transformation, doesn't mean that I'm in the same spot with you."
Their split was perhaps the beginning of her shift. Her untangling from Kanye’s complicated relationship with her sexuality has been slow, to be sure. She admitted to struggling with what to wear post-divorce because Kanye had always dressed her, and she turned to him for help retrieving a hard drive containing her sex tape. But Kim made the terrifically difficult decision to split for her own sake, telling Vogue, “For so long, I did what made other people happy… In the last two years I decided, I’m going to make myself happy… [even if that] caused my divorce.” Her 40s, then, would be all about “Team Me.”
For Kim, Team Me looks a lot like a hot love life with an extremely famous, younger boy toy. She told her sisters, "I never knew that you could just be so happy watching a TV series and going to the gym. I actually don't care if I go out like this and have no makeup on. It is the most refreshing feeling.” Expounding about Pete, she said, “When I turned 40, everyone said it’s the best sex of your life. And so far…”
It seems that for Kim, part of getting older is about reclaiming herself, her body, and her sexuality. And getting steamy shower sex whenever she wants it. On a recent episode of The Kardashians, she asks, “I was always, like, the Kardashians with my sisters, and then I was, like, Kimye. Like, who is Kim K?”
The answer is: she’s horny.