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Sex and Honesty
Sex and Honesty
Seriously, why are we always so secretive when it comes to what we really like sexually? I suppose that most of us have an overwhelming desire to follow convention, or at least give that appearence to others.
Case in point, I have a good friend I met on this site many years ago. At the time he was married. (very unhappily, of course) Yes, we did share some sexual exploits, but we were never in love, or even considering any type of relationship. What we did develop was a kinship of sorts. We both knew that we needed to explore alternate sexual activities. We knew that things shunned by conventionality excited us. We felt free to discuss anything that popped into our heads. We felt perfectly comfortable when alone, to masturbate and sometimes pleasure each other. Neither of us ever had this in our marriages. After knowing each other several years, he divorced. He explored his bisexuality and somewhat enjoyed it. But those damn social pressures made it a secretive thing. At the same time he was actively persuing a female companion, because he was lonely. I told him that he was fortunate to get out of an unhappy marriage, so please be careful not to recreate that same scenario again. I said that what he really needed was a woman who would understand his curiousities. If I could feel this way, there must be more of these creatures on this planet. After a few more years he has not found a one.
Am I the only woman on this planet who understands? What do I tell him? It is very sad that what others think of us is so damned important that we will continue to be unhappily deceitful and make the same relationships over and over again.
9/2/2005 10:06 am
Those few of you who have read my posts know I've been wrestling with issues much like this one, especially in the conditional honesty post.
What seems especially piquant with regard to your friend is that life carries no guarantees of happy endings. Sadly, holding out can mean losing out (something our president doesn't seem to understand, but I digress). And for whatever reason, the odds are against him. Most people, both men and women, find male homoeroticism comic if not disturbing. (When Arthur Penn was making the film Bonnie and Clyde, he "rewrote" the historical Clyde Barrow's bisexuality, which he thought would make for a "dreary story" that would attract only small audiences; better, he thought, to make Clyde impotent.)
At the same time, secrecy does undermine intimacy. Your friend wants intimacy--who doesn't?--and so he wants a woman with whom he can be honest about his sexual tastes. (Why does sex matter so much to intimacy? I wish I knew. Clearly you can have either without the other. But people get their buns in a twist about sex more than about any other issue, I think. And it's not just jealousy; somehow "being on the same wavelength" becomes crucial. Nor is it simply a matter of satisfaction: a vanilla partner may actually become offended by a kinky partner's kink.)
One of the foundational texts in lesbian literature bears the ominous title The Well of Loneliness. Ouch. And to extend the goofy genital metaphors, a tower can be just as lonely. It's one of life's crueller paradoxes, where social opprobrium transforms a drive toward a certain form of affiliation into a reason for shunning.
I guess all you can do is offer support to your friend, whatever he decides.
Om shanti and all that.