Average reading time : 5 minutes.
I often read that, in sex, “you are responsible for your own pleasure”. I would like to have your thoughts about this. Do you feel it true? And, to what extent?
For me, you are as responsible for your own pleasure in sex as you are when you go to a restaurant. Indeed, the more you know your own likes and dislikes, the better chance you have to have it good, and the more aware and educated you are, the more you will enjoy the same experience, but the actual pleasure is mostly (60-80%) provided by the other one.
Also, I have several objections to this thinking.
1. Denial of responsibility for the other person.
Maybe I am responsible for dealing with my own emotions, but in any interaction, I am accountable for what I do TO the other person, am I not?
A couple of years ago, I had casual sex with someone I had just met. At one point, she offered a fellatio. I had told her that I am very sensitive and fragile. Actually, after a few moments, she nibbled on my bare glans with her teeth. She BIT me! The pain was so intense that I jumped backwards in jerk reaction, barely managed to not kick her in the chest in my escape, I screamed in pain, and lost any desire. In fact, I was unable to have pleasurable feelings in my penis for a several days. It was actual, intense, physical PAIN.
She laughed and apologized (somewhat) saying she wanted “just to see how sensitive I was, and now she knew. Ha, Ha! And she would not do it again". Indeed: I never gave her the chance !
NOT a funny and pleasurable experience for me.
How responsible was I for my pleasure here?
There was an article about this on The Week called: the female price of male pleasure.
To sum up :
- For most men, “bad sex” is usually a boring experience, the absence of pleasure, or a very awkward moment. [The worst case scenario, which happens rarely, is an intense sense of embarrassment - sensation of inadequacy, of loss of confidence. The latter of which can be quite horrible, but very rare].
- For straight women, “bad sex” is physical PAIN, sometimes excruciating, sometimes traumatizing. 30% of women report physical pain during coitus and 72% during anal sex. [And worst case scenario is rape, violence, abduction...]. So the basic bad case scenario is really worse than for men, and is much more probable.
- Women are taught, from an early age, to endure pain and not complain, in order to get love. The simplest example is the standards of beauty – waxing, high heels, those are painful… So some women may not complain because they are trained to endure to please. Gender inequality exists, first and foremost in our minds and behaviours.
- Some women will not complain to a “bad” partner, because they are afraid that hurting the man’s feelings will result in violence. There IS a physical inequality! In the case of a very bad partner (for instance, one that does not respect a “no”), a violent reaction from his part is, indeed, somewhat likely. Actually, one of my friends had a date that ended up with her abducted, beaten and raped for 3 days before the guy let her go.
To go back to my own example, how could I have prevented this woman from biting me? I had told her I was sensitive and I liked gentle touch, and she bit me! Doing the opposite of my request, and hurting me in the process.
In many cases the only freedom of choice is afterwards, not going there again (and even then, our traumas can trick us, see how abused people go back to abusive partners). And it is not unusual for male consensual partners to be actually physically painful, most of my female friends have experienced painful sex! Some of my friends still have, years after, nightmares about some sex encounters that were initially consensual.
So claiming that you are the only one responsible looks like “male privilege” to me.
3. Loneliness Vs intimacy
To me, and I will quote Esther Perel in this, “sex is the gate to intimacy”.
Indeed, it is the best way to connect, to be vulnerable… and to show intimacy and care for the other person. In the extreme, “you are responsible” sounds to me like you are using the other person (and the connection) as a sex toy.
To me, sex is THE place where you should stop being selfish – oh, you should care for your own pleasure, listen to what you feel, but never, ever use the other person. We already live in a merchant society where everyone is trying to get advantage of everyone else, the intimacy of the bedroom should be a place where this has no course! Actually, doing otherwise seems like the road to disappointment, bitterness, loneliness...
Being naked and vulnerable with someone you choose… it should never be a lonesome thing! Sexuality is a way to connect, to feel the other person, to care for them, to give them, to show them how much you care, how much you want them to have pleasure! Making love is about love!
In my sexual interactions, 50 to 80% of my attention is focused on my partner. As a matter of fact, I like nothing more than the moment one of the two lets the other completely take care of pleasing them (like in oral sex, one is being passive and the other is “servicing” them).
My partners have always loved this state of mind, and I have been rewarded immensely for it, because of reciprocity.
4. Learning and improving
Thanks to my thinking that I am responsible for my partner’s pleasure, and she is for mine, my sex life has improved with every lover I had. Each one has added new pleasures to my list of possible sensations, and I make each of them discover things she had never imagined.
Indeed, in this sense, I have been responsible for my pleasure, in teaching my lovers what I know about myself, and growing accustomed to each other. But THEY have taught me what my pleasure can be, and THEY have created new ways to give it to me.
Indeed, how can you learn to be a better lover, how can you learn the potential of your own pleasure, without adding someone else’s imagination to your own?
And giving good sex is a learned skill indeed – everything I know, I have learned, and Orgasm Lovers is here to teach and share knowledge.
What are your thoughts?