Average reading time: 3 minutes.
The phrase "just sex" has just as much meaning as "just words".
The fact that most sex is done in private makes us think that it should not be spoken of. Therefore, we just say "sex".
A sexual encounter can be the most pleasant moment of your life, or the worst. Just like the touch of a hand on your face can be a pleasant caress or a painful blow, the way it is done matters. (Of course there is the intention, but you know how sometimes you accidentally punch someone? The actual technique and control matter).
Sex is never "just sex". It is a whole experience (many different moments and actions and sensations). It is an interaction, and what each person brings to the table may make the experience very different. Just like language can convey the best or worst of emotions...
Actually, sex is a language: you interact with someone, you bring your intentions, and that has an effect on the other person, and what they do has an effect on you.
There is a myth that, because is is spontaneous and comes from your heart, sex should be innate. Well, no human activity is innate - or at least, innately good: no job, no sports, no art form, no language. Sex is a form of artistic language. Like every language, it requires 4 elements, including 3 skills / mindsets:
Like every language (and every art) sexuality needs techniques, vocabulary, grammar, and the effort to be articulate – understood by the other person. Knowing their anatomy, knowing how to touch them in a pleasant way, knowing some behavioural clues... and knowing your partner's preferences and specific language.
Art (or any form of communication) needs inspiration – some feelings you want to communicate; and the intention to be heard and make the person feel your message - in this case, the intention to give them pleasure. Care for the other person, care for what you are doing, care for the relationship.
Sex, like art, needs
listening to the other
person, trying to understand them and adjust
you are doing/saying in order to reach
heart and elicit the emotions and pleasure
may move the receiver. If you can actually feel what they feel, even better, but trying to get a feeling of what they experience is paramount.
This is another element that cannot be ignored: the matter of style / preferences. If I only like Rock music, and you are a passionate Classical musician, however good you are, we will probably not be a match. Same goes if you love women and I am not one, or if you are fond of BDSM and I love sensual slow sex... However good you are, there is a matter of taste. If your preferences and my abilities don't match, it will probably be unsatisfying. Then again, even with mismatched tastes, one's abilities, skills and empathy will make a difference between a mismatch, an exploration, and a terrible experience: see how people who have never heard classical music react to it.
Preferences cannot be forced. However, you may be able to adjust and add some elements to your lovemaking in order to please the other person - just like you may learn to speak a foreign language in order to speak with them. People with different preferences may still work, however it will necessitate a lot of "meta communication": talking about your desires, trying to find ways to have both satisfied. Preferences may evolve and expand slowly over time - you may discover that something that didn't attract you was, indeed, a source of great pleasure. But your main preference will remain, and you need a partner who is willing to speak your language - and if you are willing to learn theirs, it may work just fine.
All skills can be learned, and transformed - and even preferences can evolve and people with different preferences can adapt to each other. This is the way to being a great lover. Knowing about your partner’s anatomy, knowing a few techniques, having a motivation to do it right, making the effort to understand, and listening, adjusting, having the will to make it the most pleasant for both - and, listening, listening, listening.
LEARN, LISTEN, CARE, before, during, after - all along.
Apparently, very few people are good at that. But anybody can learn. And we are learning.