Our sexuality depends, not only on our responsiveness, but also on our personality. Understanding sexuality involves differentiating between responsiveness and conscious behaviours. We have no control over the level of our sex drive, the erotic stimuli that cause our arousal and the frequency with which we orgasm. Our responsiveness cannot be changed.
We employ different behaviours according to our personality. Sexual behaviours are conscious but also instinctive to some degree. We consciously choose to engage in fantasy, masturbation and erotic sex play with a lover. Some people see view as a series of conquests. Some enjoy fantasy and masturbation. Others enjoy exploring sex play with a lover.
There are different motivations for our conscious sexual behaviours. Some behaviours are motivated by a person’s responsiveness. For many men, sex involves enjoying of sexual release and the physical gratification obtained from penetration. The most responsive men are more proactive than average in seeking out a partner. Most men, especially the more responsive, are looking for opportunities to be the penetrator in any sexual situation. A woman’s physical presence signals a potential sexual opportunity. Men are initially are attracted by looks but their focus is on obtaining intercourse.
On average men are much more promiscuous than women. Homosexual men demonstrate similar behaviours to heterosexual men. Regardless of orientation, men have a drive to engage in penetrative sex and to enjoy the eroticism of being physically intimate with a lover. Lesbian women are rarely promiscuous. Lesbians have long-term relationships based on emotional attachments. Lesbians enjoy spending companionable time together and engaging in affectionate sex play, such as kissing, cuddling and sensual touching. Lesbian relationships are not necessarily focused on genital stimulation but if they do, their lovemaking focuses on the clitoris.
Gay men approach each other and engage in sexual activity without even needing to know a name. Heterosexual men are obliged to approach women from a less explicitly sexual angle. They typically need to invest in a woman as a person before she will agree to sexual activity. Men enjoy talking about the turn-on of a lover’s sexual attributes, the sexual pleasure they enjoy with a lover and the satisfaction of obtaining their sexual release. Women do not talk about a partner in the same way. Women talk of love and companionable activities they share with someone they love.
The stimulation we employ to achieve orgasm is applied instinctively as a response to mental arousal. If women were aroused with a lover then they would use consistent techniques to the same anatomy. Orientation determines turn-ons (whether we are aroused by the same sex or opposite sex). It cannot affect the anatomy involved in orgasm. The clitoris has never been associated with heterosexuality. In heterosexual relationships, the man is the proactive partner who stimulates the female anatomy, such as the breasts and vagina, that arouse him. Even a responsive woman (who is capable of orgasm alone) is not aroused with a lover. So women have no reason to stimulate themselves with a lover. Gays naturally focus on more explicit genital stimulation because vaginal intercourse is not an option between two people of the same sex. Lesbians may focus activity explicitly on the clitoris but this does not mean that they achieve orgasm. Lesbians have the same ignorance over orgasm and how it is achieved as any woman.
Women’s behaviours are determined by their personality and attitudes including their amenability to offering a male lover an opportunity for penetration as well as their willingness to pleasure and be pleasured by a lover. Women might admire an attractive man but if he displayed his erect penis, they would run a mile. Men do not use the teasing behaviours women use because they are actively looking to participate in sexual opportunities.
If a woman behaves in a sexually provocative way, a man concludes that she has taken deliberate steps to arouse him. He assumes that she knowingly behaves in this way to obtain the intercourse that his erection can provide. He assumes she is happy with the consequences of her actions. Women instinctively want to be admired by men because it is a means of obtaining male protection. Women are not necessarily aware how their provocative behaviour affects a man because women do not have a sex drive. They come to accept that men want intercourse in exchange for offering protection.
Women can never be a penetrator so (regardless of orientation) they are much less proactive than men. Most women engage in sexual activity only as a response to a man’s initiative. Women are not aroused with a lover so their behaviours with a lover do not focus on opportunities to enjoy their own orgasm. Women generally dislike genital display and manipulation. Women are essentially on the defensive. They only need to allow a man’s instinctive desire to explore their bodies. Some women are motivated to offer proactive pleasuring because they enjoy pleasing a lover. A woman may stimulate a man’s penis manually or orally, not because it is arousing for her, but because men admire sexually adventurous women.
The problem I’ve heard most about over the years … is the problem of mismatched desire … which is the issue of sex-starved men and reluctant women … (Bettina Arndt 2009)