Candy, flowers, sex & intimacy

I’d like to start off by saying that I’m not a big fan of Valentine’s day. Not because I’m a cynic or because I’m single, or I hate men, love, romance and all that stuff, but because it is so standardized, so commercialized, that the idea of going to a restaurant with an over priced fixed V-day menu and getting candy and flowers just doesn’t work with me…ok maybe the chocolate candy part does work ;).

After talking to a lot of people, both single and not so single, both in love and not so in love with Valentine’s day, here’s what I got:

1. Men buy the candy, flowers, dinner and whatever else because they’re hoping for sex at the end of the night
2. Women love getting all that stuff because that’s what makes them feel special and not so slutty at the end of the night when they have sex

Now there’s nothing wrong with that, but come on, people, don’t call it love or intimacy, just call it what it is – sex day.

Another thing that I found during my little research is that very few people know or acknowledge the difference between sex and intimacy. No, sex doesn’t mean intimacy and to be honest I can remember quite a few very intimate and very close moments in my life where sex played no part. Now, I’m not saying they can’t be connected, I’m just saying that having sex with someone does not imply having a close intimate connection with that person. And physical closeness and emotional closeness are so different, they can’t even be used in the same sentence.

Men are actually pretty good at understanding that sex and intimacy are different, maybe because most of them will do everything they can to avoid intimacy, attachment…because they’re MEN, not boys, therefore they don’t really allow themselves to be vulnerable. And just as a side note here: there is something incredibly sexy about a man who chooses to be vulnerable in front of a woman – and I’m talking about the true vulnerability, when everything is open and exposed, not the guarded one that has the sole purpose to attract more attention.

Women, on they other hand are psychologically built to get attached. It’s not necessarily our fault, it’s more like a genetic pattern that tells our brain, this is your mate, hold on to him…even if he’s not quite a perfect mate. Does this mean women are doomed to fall in love with every guy they ever sleep with? No way. It just means that most of them do…and it’s not quite love, it’s attachment, but a lot of us can and will see the reality for what it is and not overestimate the mate.

Yes, in the end, we are all animals in search of food (dinner & candy), something that makes us feel good (flowers), something that brings a surge of joy in our bodies (sex) and then there’s that person that we’re having an intimate relationship with (the closeness, the person that gets us, that understands vulnerability and is willing to be vulnerable without mocking it or running away).

So look around in the world, it’s not about Valentine’s day, “this is a holiday invented by greeting card companies to make people feel like crap” (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), it’s about finding what you really want and not falling for all the commercial stuff that society puts in our heads.

And, dear men, we don’t all want candy, flowers and the standard dinner for Valentine’s day.

As for me, my idea of a perfect day today is pizza, intimacy (read above if you have any doubts about what that means) and that unconditional love that only comes from true vulnerability.

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3 responses to “Candy, flowers, sex & intimacy

  1. Marnia Robinson has blogged about the importance of intimacy on maintaining a long-lasting relationship. You can view it at http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cupids-poisoned-arrow/200909/the-lazy-way-stay-in-love.

    She also notes in other posts how a relationship in which sex is the only expression of intimacy will not be lasting.

    I find that while women may be more comfortable with intimacy, that our personal experiences in our family of origin and later in life sets a comfort level. Much like a thermostat, we regulate intimacy by drawing our partner close or creating distance. Rarely do a couple have the same expectations for intimacy. Thus, they must negotiate these differences in order to find a mutually pleasurable relationship.

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    • Thank you, Lee. I definitely love seeing that there are other people out there who understand the difference between sex and intimacy.

      Your work seems to be impacting the world in a beautiful way and I do want to acknowledge you for that. There is a need for more people like us in the world.

      Like

  2. Wow, pretty interesting assessment of the consumism behind many “special dates” in the calendar… The powerful drive in our genes will have bizzarre manifestations, the desire to mate, and procreate, our reptilian brain and blah blah blah blah… So much to rationalize and nothing but a million ideas to waste our precious life cycles… We have been taught to LOOK and appreciate what we LOOK at πŸ™‚ We are never taught to SEE in a person, in particular ourselves. So the desire for the pretty has become so important for everyone (me, at the top of the list)… If you take a moment and stop and look for what you want in a person (man or woman) you will realize which is the true desire for a relationship… First, the relationship with yourself must be a solid one, a loving one, a trusting one, an open one… That will be the basis for the one with another… So next time, take your time to SEE, slowly take in the other person so you end up in relation-ship and not in relation-shit πŸ™‚

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