Tag: sexual desire

Reminder-Next Tuesday-Oct 15-The Erotic Literary Salon Live / Adult Sex Ed, Is There A Universal Sexual Desire?

Hope to see you all Tuesday; planning another evening of shared verbal pleasure and sex education.

Dr. Marty Klein in typical fashion, educates his interviewer by dispelling myths. The only suggestion – (1) I don’t agree with, since people with responsive libidos don’t always know if they are interested in sex until they are sexually aroused. More on libidos in my forth coming book, Does Sex Have an Expiration Date?

Is There A Universal Sexual Desire?

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I was on a podcast yesterday when the interviewer (call her Claire) said something like “Well, of course everyone wants to feel connected during sex.”

“No,” I replied.

“Well, no grownup really wants sex to be like, just two bodies hammering away at each other.”

Again I disagreed: “Sometimes grownups do,” I said.

She was both exasperated and curious. “Well, if connection isn’t the universal thing people want from sex, what is?”

“There isn’t a universal thing that everyone wants from sex,” I said. She was incredulous. “Not love, not pleasure, not gentleness, not roughness, certainly not reproduction, there are no universal desires involved in sex,” I continued. “Not in our time or place, not in another time or place, not ever, nowhere.”

“Then why,” Claire asked, “if connection isn’t a universal desire in sex, why else would someone bother to have sex?” (Note: we were talking strictly about consensual sex.)

“People have sex for a jillion different reasons,” I said. “In fact, the same person may have sex for very different reasons during the course of a month, and certainly during the course of a lifetime.” She asked me to name some, so I did. Here are reasons that people have sex that don’t involve emotional connection:

~ Expressing or experiencing autonomy;
~ Wanting to feel manly or womanly;
~ Validating one’s heterosexuality, homosexuality, or other sexual identity;
~ Wanting to feel graceful, adequate, youthful, or normal;
~ Wanting to acquire power
~ Wanting a physically intense experience
~ Wanting to feel or be creative
~ Wanting to forget about or contradict one’s last sexual experience
~ Wanting to feel aroused
~ …and of course, raw physical pleasure

“That’s quite a list,” Claire acknowledged. “But sex without emotional connection is meaningless,” she said.

“Yes, for some people it would be,” I said. “But sex itself is meaningless. We give it meaning. Or to put it differently, people try to arrange sex that is meaningful to them. What that involves is different from one person to another; it can even be different for the same person from one sexual episode to the next.”

“But sex has to have meaning,” she said.

“Why?” I asked. “Why do we assume sex has meaning, or should have? And further, why do we assume that what makes sex meaningful to Mary will make it meaningful to Leticia? People go out to dinner for different reasons, they buy cars for different reasons, get a dog for different reasons, and go to the gym for different reasons. And those reasons may change over time. Why should sex be any different?”

“Because sex is different,” she said.

“That’s a common cultural idea,” I said. “Sexual exceptionalism: that we need special ethics for sex, special decision-making for sex, special spirituality for sex. And a special meaning-making psychology for sex. But that just isn’t true,” I emphasized. “Sex is like everything else in life, only different.”

We approach sex with all the life skills we have, which are rarely enough. We bring our willingness or hesitation to communicate; our acceptance or rejection of our bodies; our shame or pride about who we are; our fears or comfort about men or women; and our beliefs about how much people can be trusted, just to name a few.

Everyone having sex does it while being an imperfect human (living in an imperfect body). Feeling ashamed (or angry) to be imperfect interferes with sexual relaxation and enjoyment just as it interferes with parenting, friendship, and other significant activities. Judging or rejecting ourselves isn’t something we save for sex—for those so inclined, it’s a 24-hour option.

My interviewer Claire had one more question, a common and deceptively simple-sounding one: “What’s one tip you have to help a person have fantastic sex?”

“Oh, I’d never try to help someone have fantastic sex,” I replied. “My advice is to give up that dream, and instead to desire sex that’s more enjoyable. And here’s how I would advise people to make sex more enjoyable:”

(1) Don’t do it when you don’t want to, or when you’re too tired;
(2) Accept your body exactly as it is;
(3) Tell your partner one thing he or she doesn’t know about your sexuality or your body; and
(4) Relax.

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Flibanserin-Pink Viagra in a Fungus Scent?

The resounding answer is yes, and the Stinkhorn fungus is even shaped like a phallus. I don’t recall reading about this study in 2001, but since the recent FDA approval of drug for female sexual desire has received so much attention someone has done their homework. It went viral and Dvora a regular at the Salon posted on fb.

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CAN AN ORGASM BE CAUSED BY THE SCENT OF A MUSHROOM? – THE STINKHORN MUSHROOM

Free-Video-Victorian Erotica, Article-What Do Women Want?

Primer on recent article written by Daniel Bergner for the NYTimes magazine, “What Do Women Want?”

My comment regarding article:

While conducting focus groups for my dissertation several years ago, it became apparent that women were seeking a quick fix for their self-diagnosed low libidos. When I recommended erotica (often porn by another name) some women were pleased by the ‘permission’ I gave them with this suggestion. Other women cried fowl – ‘anti-feminist’ planting the seed for my Erotic Literary Salon. The space affords all sexes the opportunity to speak their inner sexual voice, with no judgment from the audience. Often women share fantasies that are anything but sweet and men express their softer side. Perhaps it is society’s expectations that even restrict our fantasies, often creating shame and limiting our true sexual turn-ons. It is ultimately our libido’s that suffer and we want to reach for a quick fix.

Excerpts:

1. It’s Complicated

The short answer: Who the &*%$ knows. Science-wise, the study of women’s sexuality is still at the baking soda and vinegar volcano stage. The field is underfunded and plagued by the idea that it’s a little pervy. It’s politically volatile and upsetting findings are assailed by both the right and left, and, not to rat out the sisters, but women are confusing. Our sexuality is a confusing morass of still-poorly understood biological reactions, psychology and societal expectations. Only recently scientists have discovered and mapped the extensive internal parts of the clitoris, there’s no agreement on whether or not the G-spot even exists, and some women can just think their way to orgasm. However…

2. Women are way more visual than they let on—or even realize.

Researchers hooked men and women up to genital arousal monitoring devices and showed them a variety of porn—a man masturbating, a man and woman having sex, even a pair of bonobo apes getting it on. The heterosexual men reported being most turned on by scenes of women with women, women alone, and men with women. (Homosexual men, same deal but with the orientations reversed.) Women, however, were actually turned on by it all, even the monkey sex. Did the women really not know what was going on with their bodies, or where they just embarrassed to admit that they were more turned on by bonobo hard-ons than a strolling naked man? Keep in mind that the women in this study were liberated enough to watch porn in a lab with wires hooked up to their groins.

3. Monogamy turns women off.

After one to four years of monogamy, a woman’s desire for her partner drops far more dramatically than a man’s. (This effect is markedly reduced if the couple lives apart.) The once white-hot passion of early love often turns into muted, dutiful sex or trying to avoid sex altogether. One woman in the book described marital sex thus: “My body would respond, but the pleasure was like the pleasure of returning library books.”

Read entire article, including comments:

http://www.damemagazine.com/2013/05/29/what-women-want-primer#comment-915407585