Dr J's Sex Facts

Fun sex facts and accurate information from a clinical sexologist for a hotter and more fulfilling sex life.

Monday, June 02, 2008

The Big Myth: Love Will Find a Way

“The important thing in acting is to be able to laugh and cry.
If I have to cry, I think of my sex life.
If I have to laugh, I think of my sex life.”
Glenda Jackson, British Actress


To Recap…

Welcome back! For the past few weeks we’ve been discussing the fact that while some sexual concerns are indeed the result of physiological factors, the reality is that we all have a variety of individual concerns that are directly related to one or more aspects of our own individual sexual lives. Remember that these individual concerns are quite real and deserve more than just a brief mention. So, if you’re new to this blog, this is where I remind you that we’ve been discussing nothing less than the origins of the many (and I do mean many) types of sexual concerns common to all of us. As I’m fond of saying: If you have a pulse, you’ve had a sexual concern!

Last week, we investigated types of sexual concerns that are the result of socio-cultural factors such as inadequate information, ignorance, fatigue, and over-work. This week, we’re going to tackle an even thornier area—types of sexual concerns due to relationship issues. So strap in and hold on tight!

Does Love Conquer All?

Please realize that Dr. J has nothing against love. In fact, I’m all about this crazy little thing called love. HOWEVER, many of us have the expectation that love will somehow make sex perfect—as though caring about someone comes packaged with a “great sex guarantee.”

Think about it, when you’re hot and heavy in a new relationship, ANY sex feels great, doesn’t it? We don’t notice anything potentially negative or disturbing when we’re getting busy being enthralled with a new person in our lives. However, once the relationship develops to the point where you settle into a comfortable routine, that’s when some issues can begin to chip away at your sexual nirvana. Among the most prevalent are:

A. Resentment of your partner due to a real or perceived sense of unequal power in the relationship (this happens when you feel that the other person always seems to be calling the shots or making the decisions, and you begin to resent it—at first it’s just small things, but small things have a way of festering and growing, don’t they!).

B. Negative patterns of communication (one or both of you aren’t comfortable talking about important issues, or one of you doesn’t know how to express your feelings about sex—or come to think of it, about anything else for that matter). These unspoken feelings percolate inside of you, creating a rich mixture of anger, discomfort and all those other feelings so destructive to good sex—and good relationships.

C. Different levels of desire for sexual activity or different preferences for various sexual activities. All of us have been there at some point in our lives. It stands to reason that even “soul mates” aren’t always going to be on the same sexual wavelength with their partner. This is actually so common there are hundreds of books on the subject written by well-meaning, but clueless people. Their advice usually runs to the “strawberries and whipped cream” approach. You know the drill: get away for a romantic weekend, smear each other with something sweet and edible, lick it off, and yow! the two of you experience a renewed sense of sexual adventure as you magically find each other irresistible all over again. Ah, if only this were true…Of course I don’t deny that this can be fun (a LOT of fun!), and might be just what’s needed for a little booster shot of desire—but the reality is that it’s not always that simple—especially when that weekend is over and you return to that same-old, same-old.

D. No discussion about sexual concerns would be complete without mentioning how relationship conflicts can result in a loss of interest or sexual desire. Here’s where we all let out a big sigh, perhaps sensing a deep disturbance in the Force. There’s an endless variety of potential irritants that can arise when you’re with someone, day in and day out—hey, I’m just a professional sexologist, I’ll let you do the math. Anyway, here’s a small sample of these little annoyances: 1) you forgot to take out the trash, leaving your partner to deal with it when he’s already late for work; 2) she doesn’t make any effort to get along with your mother, even though she knows how important it is for you to maintain family harmony; 3) whenever you begin to tell a story to friends, he always interrupts and corrects small details, undermining your credibility. You get the picture: the possibilities for a host of potential irritations are endless.

Coming Attractions

I’m sure, with very little effort on your part, you can add your own bits of wisdom to the above. Feel free to drop Dr. J a line and tell us all about it. Sharing is a good thing. As for next week, we’ll be breaking new ground and continuing this discussion. Be sure to stop by when we take a look at some of the motivating psychological and emotional issues that affect our sexuality. I think you’ll find it of personal interest.

With Pleasure,

Dr. J

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