Friday, July 19, 2019
Home Emotional aspects of sexuality Non-sexual intimacy Understanding the value of non-sexual intimacy

Understanding the value of non-sexual intimacy

Sexuality is about our emotions and how we feel loved in our relationships with others. Although sex is often described in terms of eroticism, many people also look for emotional rewards. Sexual activity can cause us to feel emotionally close to a lover. If we grow up within a family, we have a sense of connection with those around us. Children need their parents to care for them and to take an interest in them. As adults, when we love another person, that sense of emotional connection has to be generated from zero.

Everyone has emotions but the sexes express their feelings in different ways. Women are thought to be more emotional than men because of the debilitating effect emotions have on women. Most women cry when they are upset, angry or frustrated. Adrenalin causes men to engage in aggressive action. Men are instinctively better fighters than women are. Women are paralysed by fear rather than propelled into action. Female responses are considered weak or effeminate and so they are disapproved of in a man.

Men can live quite happily in functional environments devoid of emotional attachments. Men focus on doing physical activities. But women’s lives focus on their relationships. Most women want to talk and share their lives with people they care about. This is one of the reasons why women are often less motivated to work in paid employment than men tend to be.

Men talk about work, sport and women (as objects of arousal). Women talk about family, fashion and relationship issues. Men talk for strategic reasons. Men meet up to network, create business contacts and opportunities and to find out information. Of course, some women also do this but most women get together for emotional reasons. They look for reassurance from others, comfort and support. Men do not relate to this form of communication.

To women, communicating about their feelings is very natural when they are intimate with someone. But men’s instincts prevent them from showing weakness and thereby opening themselves up to attack. Many heterosexual men dislike discussing their emotions. A man is often uncomfortable about sharing his feelings. This is an instinctive need to compete with other men.

Men tend to put work priorities before the demands of a relationship. In women’s eyes, this is not love. Love to a woman means wanting to spend every moment with someone. But women accept men’s different priorities because of the need to support the family. To men, work represents a means of competing with other men for status as well as a means of attracting a woman (as a results of his ability to support a family). A man feels justified in working all day or all week before turning up at home and expecting his wife to be amenable to sex. A man’s emotional needs are satisfied within a few minutes. Men mistakenly assume that by satisfying their own sexual needs, they have also satisfied a woman’s emotional needs.

Sex may not be the only reason men seek relationships with women, but it is the key reason. Men’s sex drive focuses their minds on obtaining opportunities for intercourse. Given male complaints about low intercourse frequencies, sex is not clearly much less important to women. A woman may be motivated to offer sex in return for affection if she feels it is genuine.

Men assume women’s role is simple. Women just need to open their legs and let men do the rest. Reproductive risk means that sex is a much more emotional experience for a woman than it ever is for a man. Women want autonomy over their own bodies. This is about personal privacy because women are not aroused with a lover. Men find this difficult to understand because their responsiveness means they want a lover to stimulate them.

As long as they have regular sex, men rarely complain that their partners are unloving. Neither do men want tokens of affection such as flowers. Sexual pleasuring involves an exchange but not the mutual exchange men assume. A woman only has the reward of giving pleasure. This reward relies on a woman feeling appreciated. A man needs to make a woman feel that he cares about her personally, which takes much longer than a few minutes.

When a woman is in love, she enjoys the emotional sensations of dancing with a lover. Male arousal prevents men from appreciating these more romantic aspects of attraction. Women naturally respond with affection (hugging and kissing) when they love someone. Men translate any show of affection into a sexual invitation. Women come to resent this if a man is unloving. Sex acts like a barometer in relationships because, as long as a woman feels loved and appreciated, she may offer a man the sex he needs.

A woman’s emotional needs are not appreciated by men because they are much subtler than the very obvious male sex drive. Women are more concerned with non-sexual intimacy, which develops as couples spend time together. Women look for communication and support as well as the opportunity to share conversation, humour and friendship. When a woman obtains the emotional rewards she needs (based on loving companionship), she may be willing to satisfy a man’s sexual needs by offering intercourse.

If a person is not prepared to embrace the needs and genuine desires of their partner, then they shouldn’t get into a relationship. People have to understand and be willing to provide what their partner needs more of in their relationship. (Stephan Labossiere 2012)