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Musings on Sex and Love

Updated on August 20, 2010

Good Lord, Another Sex Article?

It's hard to find a focus when it comes to sexuality, relationships, intimacy, gender orientation, and romance. A lot of this spawned from late-night discussions between the love of my life and I. The information not only came from our experiences and observations, but so much of it was said in better words by other resources (namely Scarleteen).

This isn't a do or don't or a how-to article on love and sex.  This isn't an etiquette courtesy of a professional psychologist.  What you're about to read here are just guidelines and common sense.  This is an open-minded thought process that came from not just me, but conversational dialogues between me and others.  This is shared to get you thinking.

So a lot of this is a compilation of advise we have given in the past, lessons we have learned, and resources we have read. This hub is going to share the basics so far, as I have been touching on basics as of late anyway, such as this: The Ethics of Non-Monogamy. I consider 'Musings on Sex and Love' to be a good prequel to the 'Ethics of Non-Monogamy'.

I hope you will find this of some use. :)


There are a lot of false assumptions and myths floating around. There are even more harsh, unnecessary judgments. One of the main things that come to mind is: If two people are in love, then things should fall in place. Huh? What? In that scenario, those two people are going to be absolutely different in many ways, like communication methods, interests, family and societal background, and libido. Heck, they may even disagree on parenting methods, how to take care of a dog, or how to clean dishes.

Alright. That settles it. What really makes a relationship? What's so special about sex, anyways? Why is it so important to be in love if it doesn't fix everything? Sounds like very simple questions, and yet it's still so easy to assume silly things. Go ahead, take the risk, see what I've dissected below.

When people equate sex with love...

  • One of the most risky thing in the world of love, sex, and relationships you can do is to believe that if the person isn't having sex with you, that person doesn't love you or desire you.

  • It's time for a mental and emotional overhaul if you think that if you love someone, you must have sex with them.

  • Sex and sexuality is such a complex thing. There are myriads of reasons a person just doesn't want sex now or all the time, same as there are myriads of reasons a person wants sex all the time. Love isn't always one of them.

When people believe sex should be reciprocated or demanded....

  • You should know what you and your lover(s) expect out of a sexual encounter before it happens. Sex should be a mutual thing between all partners that comes in time, not expected right away.

  • People are pleasured in many different ways when it comes to sex. Expecting reciprocation strictly in the terms of “I gave you blowjob, now you need to eat me out” is ridiculous. Perhaps one person is thrilled with simply giving intercouse while the other person is great with giving blowjobs.

  • In the words of Heather Corinna in her article Reciprocity Reloaded: “With activities like sexual intercourse, dry sex or kissing, where the same or similar parts are getting used and stimulated at the same time, we assume reciprocity: that both parties are giving and getting the same thing. That in and of itself is often a false assumption, because that doesn’t mean we’re having the same experience, or that our enjoyment in that activity is identical to that of our partner, or vice-versa.”

  • Just because you ate someone else out doesn't mean it's required for that person to give you something in return. That person needs to be comfortable with what they can or can not give or do within any given situation.

  • Guilting, demanding, or whining about sex gets you nowhere. It's a complete buzzkill. Saying, “You never have sex with me anymore” is disrespectful. Everyone has their own sex drive peaks and downtime, everyone has different reasons for arousal triggers or lack there of. It doesn't (always) mean you aren't desirable, etc.

  • Sex is not a commodity.

Why condemn sexual behavior and relationships in regards to age?

  • “It's so disgraceful to see 12 year olds having relationships, they don't know what they're doing”

  • “You're 18, too young to even be considering polyamory”

  • “Why are 13 year olds to 16 year olds having sex? It's disgusting.”

I hear this everywhere. This is basically our society's message.

People are dating from the age of 12, so I wouldn't quite be so quick to say people can't even have healthy relationships at such a young age. A lot of people also can't have healthy relationships at age 50. It depends on the people themselves. It's good to experiment. It's good to find what really makes relationships work for you and what kind of relationships work for you.

More importantly, when I talk about pre-adolescence and teenagers dating, I mean dating within age-appropriate group. Consent can only stretch so far. There are age consensual laws within many states and countries. This is where safe and consensual comes into play. It is safer when you hit 18 that you can consider older people.

As for sex, many pre-teens and teenagers are aware of sex. Rather than taking resources from them, or not providing them information, I think it's best to convey that sex is normal for everyone. I would give them information, let them know I support what they choose to do, and make sure they are aware of protection – emotionally and physically.

Anyone of any age should check with themselves how *ready* they are to even discuss sex before they are prepared to dive into the sex pool. Every age is going to be curious about sex at all, like dry humping a pillow or wondering what female anatomy looks like. These are natural steps towards sexuality as they grow and mature and question everything.

What makes experimentation and experience so important?

This question takes a lot of consideration. It's a given that you should gain experience through experimentation to learn and discover something. But why is that so important?

If a person is ready to explore their own sexuality, with themselves or with a partner, they are prepared to gain sexual experiences and to experiment on what is right for them. In exploring yourself or another partner, you find out what makes you and/or them comfortable or uncomfortable, what turns you and/or them on or off, what triggers an orgasm, what doesn't, and what attracts you or doesn't.

When is it okay to associate sex with love?

Love does get augmented by sex or sex can get augmented by love. I believe sex is just a bonus when love is in the equation. I don't believe that you have to have sex for love or love for sex, but that you can have sex in a loving manner and for loving reasons. When I say loving reasons, I mean when you love someone so much that you don't just enjoy having sex with them, you find things you love about having sex with them.

Sex can be a casual thing between people who are attracted to each other and respect each other. However, it is much nicer when sex happens between two people in love. I believe that's the only time you should (hopefully cautiously) associate sex with love.

What are important factors when it comes to considering sex and relationships?

Self-confidence. The confidence that you can handle relationships and consequences. It's important that you decide to partake in anything for yourself, rather than to get pressured or guilt-tripped into anything.

Self-respect. That respect that says I deserve better than to be taken advantaged of, I deserve better than to be treated like crap, I deserve my own independence, I deserve to say no when I want to say no.

Respect for partners. How can there be relationships when the partners don't respect each other? There has to be a respect by not taking away their ability to make decisions, by respecting the kind of person you like being around.

Trust. You trust this person enough to have sex with them, to consider this person the significant other in your life, etc. This person should trust you the same way.

Honesty. Honesty goes a long way and truly opens things up more. Being honest in itself shows that you trust and respect the partners you are with or having sex with. Saying something like, “I'd really rather we didn't do this, but I'm okay with doing something else because of this or that” - good. You're being honest. You're drawing your own boundaries and the person involved should be able to respect that.

Communication, compromising, negotiation. Taking the honesty example and using it here: It's good to communicate what your needs are and what you're not comfortable with. It shouldn't be scary to say “Hmm, I don't like it when you put your tongue there. Could you move it up a little more?” As for relationships, it actually takes time and effort to maintain it. Help it to survive by meeting on a solid ground and going from there. Compromise a little bit, have a bit of mutualness going on.

Consensual and safe. Two important keywords to anything sexual and romantic. Your partner don't want sex? Fine. You want oral but not intercourse? Fantastic. Consensual in any relationship or sexual activity means when both partners consent to a given situation. Safe is kind of optional, considering the BDSM world. There should still be a safeword for any situation, when a person decides to stop at any point.

These are often the words I'll use. These are the words that matter when it comes down to interactions with other humans, sex or not. They become even more important when your emotional aspects are on the line.

It seems simpler when said, it seems very obvious when you look at it. However, a lot of relationships and marriages are incredibly unhealthy or in shambles because of the lack of the things I listed above.

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What makes sex or relationships exclusive to specific groups; monogamy, straight, etc?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing makes sex or relationships exclusive to specific groups. Sex is not a property to religion or government where you must be married in order to have it. Sex is not a property of heterosexuals where no one else should have it; homosexuals have been having sex for years before people decided to make it an issue.

It does not harm me or anyone else when two men want to have sex with each other; that's their private lives that I am not part of. It does not infringe on my rights or anyone else's when someone has two or three consensual partners in a safe manner appropriate to that person.

Sex and relationships are only exclusive to 'safe and consensual', in my mind. So this means I do have a problem with rape. I have a problem with underage non-consensual sex, or non-consensual sex at all. I have a problem with molestation because it harms the children involved. I have a problem with people who lie about having STDs in order to have sex with someone. I have a problem with someone refusing protective barriers like condoms because they feel they're the special case even if condoms would ease that partner their state of mind. I have a problem with a person guilt-tripping someone into sex because they think they're better than that person and they deserve sex from that person.

So What Does All This Do For You?

So, what do you want out of relationships? What do you want out of sex? By this point, you're probably wondering how anything could be sacred.  Most people question the value of sexuality if they must consider that monogamy, virginity, or anything else for that matter, is no longer sacred. What I consider to be sacred could very well be different from what you consider sacred.

When you know something is right for you, you've drawn up boundaries for yourself, and you're doing it not to make someone else feel better about themselves; that's pretty sacred. Human relationships are sacred in itself that there is a beautiful chemistry between the people involved. There is honesty and respect rather than focusing on what is right or wrong in other people's eyes.

As for sex? I believe we have sex because it's a drive that any creature with sexual organs have. It's not as important as food or water, but we do have an instinct that tells us it is - basically, this means a drive for reproduction.

Moreover, we have sex because it is a bonding experience, it provides cardio exercise, it relieves stress, it eases sexual tension, the orgasm causes endorphins (chemical for happiness and a natural pain-reliever) to set off, and it is used to resolve arguments (Bonobo Sex and Society).

Possibly, in considering all of this, you could go forth and look at things a little more differently. Question yourself on what sex and love means to you.


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    • Cheeky Girl profile image

      Cassandra Mantis 8 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

      Some good interesting subjects discussed here. I am impressed.

    • profile image

      ralwus 8 years ago

      I have always been very comfortable with sex and my own sexuality. Don't do bi or other men, only my Wee One will do now. I am comfortable with that too now.

    • Sunny Robinson profile image

      Sunny Robinson 8 years ago from Tennessee

      Jewels, oh yes. I can go with that. For me to totally relax to sexual experience, it took a very patient man who never tried to pressure me into anything and had plenty of passion and respect to open my eyes and body.

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 8 years ago from Australia

      Very comprehensive hub. Even 30 and 40 year olds are still working it all out, and some never do. Can take a really good partner to totaly relax into sexual confidence and thoroughly enjoy the experience.

    • Sunny Robinson profile image

      Sunny Robinson 9 years ago from Tennessee

      Bahaha. The word 'blowjob' sucks? Sorry, leftover humor from reading FrogDropping stuffs. Aww, CabinGirl. Thank you. :)

      Ralwus - Ooh. Love Doctor. I think I like that. Thank you.

      Elly - Yes, younger than 12 is typically curiousity about anatomy and what have ya. I personally don't believe that it's because it's so talked about, but because it really is natural. What gets so talked about and focused on is actually not healthy for those kids - like body image and such.

      I totally agree with you for the most part, though. This part here: "Because I believe that love just happens so fast that if it is real love between two people. You both know it and your work your ass off to make it work." - Veddy true.

      Thanks for sharing your perspective!

    • profile image

      ralwus 9 years ago

      I think you are now the Love Doctor on HP. good stuff

    • profile image

      Actionelly 9 years ago

      I just think at 12, kids are still playing with toys and some girls haven't even started their period yet. I don't think they are ready at that age to start contemplating complexities of sex. However, I do know that some have already experimented with their own parts out of curiosity, though there is no drive to procreate and if anything, the reason they go beyound that is because of how much it is talked about and focused on today. So they are out there acting like little pimps and sluts they see as their role models. Sorry for those terms, lol. Getting drunk and not knowing what else to do with their time. I would say 14 and older on their terms and of their own age, if they are curious would be normal. Girls were married off at around that age and are at least a little more inclined to think for themselves.

      I am one of those that wished sex was something special still. Why don't we have any mating rituals or anything... besides getting drunk and hitting parties. If people are so okay with sex and its openness. Why does it take getting shit faced before you hit on a person? I know this isn't always the case, but it really is the only method available to find potential mates, besides matchmaking agencies. Isn't that weird and yes that is what we are doing. Finding mates regardless of sexuality.

      Anyway off topic there, I think for most of us we go through stages and after experience upon experience we make expectations of what we want and expect. Also again off topic a bit here... but think of how much girls and boys are different when it comes to sex and why? I think it has alot to do with how we are taught. From a young age girls watch and hear about the guy that is going to sweep them off their feet. Daddies little princess. We watch all these movies and cartoons that shows us that is how it is. Girls porn is romance novels...which again gives us a false reality on how things are going to work. I believe the same is true of boys.. they get into the porn movies and magazines and think that is how it is going to work. That a girl is gonna want to give it to them night and day. What alot of them don't know is how the girls in the porn business actually hate it... it is an act. It isn't the real world... Of course it isn't always the case. Not saying some girls don't like that and some boys don't like romance. I do think this causes alot of problems in our perceptions. This isn't black and white though. There are people that get sexually abused at a young age and raped, that also is the basis of perceptions. Sorry I went off on a tagent there.

      As for what I want out of a relationship. I want someone completely and utterly all about me of course. Someone devoted but yet not clingy. Really though, I try not to make lists. Because I believe that love just happens so fast that if it is real love between two people. You both know it and your work your ass off to make it work. You communicate from the beginning your expectations on sex. What you do and don't like and then you respect that. I understand that he really wants to have sex and if I don't really feel like it I might say no, but having the understanding on how it feels to want to make love and be rejected sucks.. I try not to often. I have been in this relationship a long ass time though. So respect goes both ways. We have talked so much over the years and know each other very well. Which is exactly what I want. I don't give it up to just anyone. I feel like in giving that up so does apart of my spirit. It is something I only wish to give to those I feel a very big connection with. That is why I don't fully understand having sex with tons of different people. Although I do not knock it at all. I just have never been able to do that. For me, If I love someone that much to see them with another person would fucking kill me. I just couldn't because again how I percieve it.


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