When We Say, “All They Want is Sex,” We Harm Men
It is generally believed that men need lots of sex, that they think about it all the time, that they value looking at sexy women, and divide women into body parts. They are seen as dirty, lustful and inappropriate. Then they are criticized for being this way.
Men are defined as sexually shameful.
Purely by being male, men are shamed by their very own sexuality. “Those men.” “All they want is sex.” “They are led around by their second brain.”
Instead, men have been cursed with these sexual attractions. They weren’t born with a more distorted view of sexuality than women. It was given to them by the lack of intimate connection in early life. This is followed by the culture’s offering of what looks like a solution – lust. But when he takes the solution, he is seen as sexually shameful.
When a woman falls in love with a man, and engages sexually to create a coupling, she expects him to have healthy sexuality. (This is even though she isn’t sexually healthy either – she can’t talk openly, discuss the meaning of sex, how to use it well, and the value of monogamy any more easily than he can). When he shows any signs of the lustful training the culture has given him, she shames him. As he receives shaming that he believes is appropriate – but hated – he resents her. Then passive aggressive behaviors may appear. And she shames him for this, too.
When men in my therapy groups take a close look at their sexuality, they discover that healthy sexuality is possible for them, as well as for women. They walk through the process of looking at how their sexuality was harmed, they give up the old, unhealthy versions, and over time, discover an expansive, loving, use of it.
Men, don’t believe that secretly lusting, and fantasizing about women you have seen or known when you masturbate, is a normal use of sexuality. And at the same time, do not believe that you should feel shame for doing this. Come to a therapy group for men who will talk openly about their sexual attractions and behaviors. As your shame drops when hearing other men talk openly about it too, you will have the chance to discover far more satisfying ways of using this wonderful component of being human.
I have two novels where the main character is a man who learns about how his sexuality is seen as bad, and how he claims a shame-free use of it. Dirty Sex or Clean Sex is on Kindle for $2.99. Sex From the Man’s Point of View.
I have walked many men through the discovery of what harmed their sexuality, and what it can be like now. Men, even more than women, are amazed to find a shame-free use of sex because they have accepted that their sexual nature is shameful. They no longer have to separate within themselves in order to “make love” with a partner. They get to stop working at being a “good lover.” Sex becomes natural, it unfolds with themselves alone, or with someone they love.
And there is more!