probably been read by more people than all the articles in the magazine the past year, because of the cover. I must say, it worked for me. Isn't this what psychology is about? Going deeper, finding hidden meaning? And discovering what batman masks do for you when you kiss?
The article is based on a book put out by London's School of Life, a center devoted to practical ideas for enhancing or changing your life in small, important ways. The book is by Alain De Botton, called How to Think More About Sex, and what I think most interesting is the ways he calls sex a demanding beast disconnected from the person you are most of the time, and often the person you might want to be:
Sex...is a fundamentally disruptive and overwhelming force, at odds with the majority of our ambitions and all but incapable of being discreetly integrated within civilized society. Sex is not fundamentally democratic or kind. It refuses to sit neatly on top of love. Tame it though we might try, it tends to wreak havoc across our lives; it leads us to destroy our relationships, threatens our productivity, and compels us to stay up too late in nightclubs talking to people whom we don't like but whose exposed midriffs we wish to touch...Our best hope should be for a respectful accommodation with an anarchic and reckless power.--pp. 5-6
Not meant to be a comforting thought, because the point of the article (and the book) is the trouble sex causes, and why.
Some major points:
1. What turns you on is autonomic. You can't usually change it. You can of course not do it, but you can't stop wanting to figure out what it is, which might take some time and experiences, good and bad. This is different from what "type" of person you're typically attracted to. These are the acts, the fetishes, the deep desires, the clothes. If you don't know what yours are, you can read a beginner's guide called 150 Shades of Play. This point from De Botton 's book comes with a caveat:
2. The same act that you find very arousing with the right partner is disgusting with the wrong one. Even as much as kissing. Think of that Super Bowl commercial. Very, very wrong kissing partners.
3. In a marriage or long-term relationship, it is very hard to ask your partner to do something debasing to you or themselves and then leave the room and have corn flakes and talk of shopping lists. Not only is it awkward, but we worry what they'll think of us. So, we typically don't ask. Even when we really want to.
|From "6 reasons why you should have more sex"|
5. Most people prefer nonverbal communication during sex. Too many words distract from the sensual experience, and the need to "turn your brain off" when you make love. Some sex words work. Something like "can you move your hip a little to the right and up?" typically doesn't. That would best be "shown not told."
6. The relationship cost of "not tonight honey" is also high. I thought this was interesting. He says that most people expect to be rejected by people they don't know well, but when that rejection comes from the person they love more than any other, the sting is immediate and intense. No matter how often it happens. Dr. Laura Schlessinger calls frequent "turn-downs" emotional infidelity, because you promised to be faithful to your vows to love and cherish. And you're not.
There's a book called Is That All He Thinks About? : How to Enjoy Great Sex with Your Husband by Marla Taviano which takes reluctant aim at the stereotypical "too tired" wife she used to be. When pushed to ask what would help, she gave a laundry list of things that would help her be in the mood--help with the housework, time off from child care, a nice relaxing bath, perhaps a nap--all very nice but when they are used as conditions for sex, the relationship turns coercive, conditional, and selfish.
|Men and Women think of sex...differently|
|Miss Poppins on parenting|
Interesting stuff. Funny how both books use the word "think" and "sex" in their titles. Seems the opposite of their theme.
There is one more book in the series available in the U.S., How to Stay Sane. In case you need this as much as I, and sex alone doesn't do it for you this week, I'll check it out for next Sunday.