More Than Just Sex

Everyone loves sex.  There is no shame in that.  But feelings, on the other hand…those are what you’re taught to be ashamed of.  We’re constantly told not to get attached because we’ll look clingy.  We even warn ourselves not to get attached because we’re so afraid of getting hurt.  We’re taught to play these games with people: don’t text back right away, don’t be the first to send a message, basically don’t show any traces of interest or emotion because then you lose. We turn sex into a game of power, and the first to fall in love is the weakest.  After all, it’s just sex.  Why would you expect anything more?

And sure, we all have had those sexual encounters where we woke up the next morning, silently made our way to the door, probably wishing it didn’t happen, and there was no attachment there whatsoever.  There are people who we try to forget, and people whose names we can’t remember.  One night stands that are nothing more than a fleeting moment of intimacy, usually caused out of drunkenness or desperation.

But what happens when it becomes something more, and you do get attached? Or the other person gets attached, even though you both made it clear from the start that this was never going to be anything more than sex. “I just see you as a friend.” But that’s not true.  You don’t just go around sleeping with all your friends.  That would be weird and make for some really confusing relationships.  Once sex happens, there is usually something more, whether you want to admit it or not.  If you keep having sex with a person, it’s because you both like having sex with each other.  There is something about that person that keeps you coming back.  Sometimes it’s convenience, sure.  Or based solely on attraction.  But when it goes on long enough, someone is bound to want more.  There are plenty of other vaginas and penises out there that you could be having sex with.  So if you keep picking the same one, you will usually end up wanting more.  Sometimes that means finding sex somewhere else, which can be fine if you are both okay with seeing other people.  But usually someone will get jealous and end up getting hurt.  And that’s because when they wanted more, they didn’t want another penis or vagina.  They wanted commitment.

I have tons of friends who say they aren’t looking for a relationship, and they are just looking for sex, because hey—why deprive yourself of something we all love?  Feelings on the other hand, all that shit is scary.  Stay far away from that.  We are more afraid of catching feelings than STDs. But I have witnessed so many fuck-buddy situations where somebody  ended up getting hurt.  And the reason they got hurt was because they did exactly what we’re told not to do in these situations— they got attached. We can deny it all we want, but you know you’re going to be at least a little upset when he picks another girl at a party over you when you thought you could count on him being in your bed later.  Maybe it’s because we feel entitled to something more.  If I let you inside me, you can at least text me the next day, or respect me enough to not hook up with someone else in front of me. Or, you know, maybe take me to the movies instead of that Barbie-looking girl you work with. Why is it so hard for some of us to separate sex from feelings, while other people can just sleep with whomever they want and never care at all about what happens next?

We all want different things, and we don’t usually make these things clear from start to finish. Sure, maybe you went into this just wanting to be friends, and months later, you realize you want more, but you’re too afraid to tell the other person because you don’t want to ruin what you have.  Or you still don’t want to admit that maybe, just maybe, you got attached.  Is getting attached really such a bad thing? It’s unrequited love that hurts.  But if we never try, we never know.  We need to make our feelings known or we’re just going to get more attached, and undoubtedly wounded when we realize the other person doesn’t feel the same.

Sure, sex doesn’t mean love, and love means more than sex.  But addiction, on the other hand, isn’t quite so simple.  And when you have sex, your brain releases dopamine, the same chemical associated with addiction, which makes it seemingly impossible to separate sex from feelings.  But just because you are infatuated with someone, doesn’t mean they are the right someone.  People get addicted to cigarettes all the time, but that doesn’t mean cigarettes are good for them.  It actually means quite the opposite.  Addictions are never any good.  But then the question arises—am I actually addicted to you, or am I just addicted to having sex with you?

You’re probably going to think it was the person.  You’re going to convince yourself you were in love with the way they smelled, the way their hair looked best at two in the morning, the way their body felt next to yours.  But that’s all they were: another body.  Another person giving you orgasms that tricked you into thinking he was the one.  But he’s probably not.  At least not if he just sees you for sex. And let’s be honest, how much do you actually know about him?  Maybe you would like to get to know him better, sure.  But that’s a different story.  Right now, all you know is how he is in bed, and that’s infatuation, not love.  Although it’s pretty easy to confuse the two.

Sex is in fact very powerful and addicting.  It relieves headaches, reduces stress, it makes you happy; there are plenty of health benefits from it, which makes it easy to feel like you absolutely need it.  So when we are partaking in sex consistently with the same person, they are giving us something we need, and maybe that’s why we start to think we need that person.  It’s not uncommon to get attached to your fuck buddy, especially when you see each other outside of the bedroom.  You expect them to always be there for you, and when they’re not, you’re going to feel hurt for all sorts of reasons.  But there are no strings attached in these types of situations. He is free to do whatever he wants, and fuck whoever he wants, while you just sit there and pretend to be okay with it.

We like to act like sex is just sex, but it’s actually really complicated in the way it affects our emotions.  Especially when a person feels they need sex.  They are more prone to believing they also need that person.  Sure, you can get sex from someone else, but you don’t want to.  You counted on this person.  You felt something with that person. You wanted something more.  Sex wasn’t just sex to you, but sometimes you have to accept that it was just sex to the other person. They’re going to find “more” somewhere else, by having sex with other people.  Don’t stick around because you think you are okay with just having sex.  Take this as your intuition telling you that maybe you want more.  So go find someone who cares about you and is going to give you more than just sex.  You deserve it.

Photo credit: https://flic.kr/p/8543iX

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