Based on recent conversations I’ve heard and had, the one topic everyone has is the sex talk! It’s a hot topic, whether you’re doing it or not doing it or you want to do it but not sure if you should do it (LOL) we still talk about it! I have therefore decided to put pen to paper about the big “IT” and some of the views that I’ve heard or read about.
A friend of mine mentioned the following and I’m going to incorporate the statement into this blog;
Everyone has vices, for some it’s wine (that’ll be my vice), others money, some the most fashionable bag or shoe and then of course we have Sex! I can see the bubble question already floating over some heads ‘is sex a vice?’ ‘How is sex a vice?’ etc. Whether or not we see it as a vice, it’s certainly something we all talk about and will at some point in life partake in. Personally speaking, I would not say sex is a vice and I’m sure many people will agree with me however, it can become just that if you allow it supersede other important needs or things in our life. When sex becomes that thing that you go chasing and it causes issues in your relationships then you know there’s a problem.
The IT Factor –
I’m sure we’ve all been in this situation – picture this – you’re out with your friends and the sex talk comes up and somebody’s like ‘OMG so we did it and it was sooooo good’ or something along those lines. Like wait wait wait, what is IT??? Why not just use the word sex, it’s a word that every person has heard and they know what the word means and entails, I mean even my pastor uses the word “sex” on stage so why do we shy away from it. I’m coming from the female perspective here, I’m sure some guys have their own term or slang that they use instead of IT.
We live in a society where sex is something very natural and we are not children where you use the word sex, giggle and run away so please let’s get comfortable with it people! SEX! I mean if you’d rather not say sex then you can always use the word “coitus” that’s a personal favourite.
Now that we’ve cleared up the IT issue and we are all comfortable with saying sex, let’s get started on how I’ve come to write about the topic.
Leave it on the shelf or take it out for a test drive –
The long game:-
I was out with some friends recently and we had a bit of a round table discussion about sex and the different views on whether or not to have sex before marriage, how sex or lack thereof sometimes ties into cheating and even the research into sex and how it affects people. This I think is why it’s such a hot topic because everyone’s views are always different in one way or another.
I’ve read several articles about how sex connects people on a deeper level so much so that some people say it’s a spiritual connection. A recent article I read stated that Sex is a tridimensional experience: spirit, soul, and body. Anytime you have sex with a person you bond with them. Whenever a person is sexually involved with another person, neurochemical changes occur in both their brains that encourage limbic, emotional bonding.
Your limbic system is an ancient collection of brain structures located deep within the brain. The limbic system is the emotional part of your brain and processes your sense of smell, stores highly charged emotional memories, and affects all sleep and appetite cycles, moods, sexuality, and bonding.
So, imagine connecting with someone on such a deep level without realising the emotional attachment that comes with it and then after some good loving, you wonder why you want to see the person more even though it was meant to be just for fun or before “IT” you thought you weren’t fussed either way and then you are? It’s the limbic emotional bonding!!! Ok, here’s a fun example:-
One of my friends, let’s call her Lisa. Lisa and her ex are on what I now realise to be a long game and are bound by their limbic emotional systems. How? Lisa doesn’t talk to her ex, we’ll call him Sean. Let me try and start from the beginning, sort of;
Lisa and Sean dated like 5 years ago and they broke up over 2 years now however, if they set eyes on each other, you know one person will be at the others place even if they claim they are not interested. They don’t talk at all, no messages or calls or random ‘hey! How’re you?’ and they only bump into each other every 6 to 7 months but when they do… the story ends up the same. Let me give you an example. We had a girl’s night out, drinks and clubbing after. At the club, We see Sean and his friends but both Lisa and Sean pretended they did not see each other the whole night right but there was a lot of peacocking going on and then come the end of the night, they “suddenly” notice each other like a casual ‘hey, I didn’t know you were here’. ‘Oh I didn’t know you were here either, I’m off home now though. Byeeee’. The next day, my girl is like ‘oh you wouldn’t believe it, Sean ended up at mine last night’. (insert rolling eyes). ‘Oh!!! Seriously!!!! When was the last time you guys spoke??’ ‘Hmmm, well we haven’t in a while, last time we kind of bumped into each other on a night out and well… you know… but I know it’s never going to happen between us, I mean, I want it to but he’s got all these issues and can’t be bothered to go down that route again but *sigh*’….
I’m sure you’re wondering what the above has to do with this Limbic emotional bonding right – well the article I read went on to explain the following; People are misinformed and therefore convinced that sex is strictly a single-dimensional, physical act with no emotional or spiritual connections. Yet after sex they find themselves mysteriously longing for the person
Near the center of the brain lies the deep limbic system. This part of the brain sets the emotional tone of the mind, promotes bonding, stores highly charged emotional memories and modulates motivation and libido. Whenever you have sex with someone, neurochemical changes occur in your brain that encourage limbic emotional bonding. In other words, while you may think you are just having casual sex, you are maintaining and establishing an emotional bond whether you like it or not. Note that females have a larger limbic system than men and will typically be more limbically connected. So if you’re trying to get over someone, literally, do not get on top of them! Sex with the ex is stopping those chemical limbic bonds to break.
Research suggests that people may crave their ex-partner similarly to the way addicts crave a drug they are withdrawing from. Basically, stay away from the Sean’s in your life!!!
Then we have the no sex before marriage based on bible reading. There is no explicit verse in the bible that says “you must not have sex before you get married” but the bible alludes to sex outside of the marriage being immoral. 1 Corinthians 7 – talks a little about abstaining from sex and only having sexual intercourse with your spouse (husband/wife) because of the level of immorality. I’m sure there are other scriptures that we can find about sex being immoral or being a sin but we still have sex or still want to have sex and when you do have sex outside of marriage should you feel guilty? Well this is where the Liberal view comes in.
The Liberal View:-
The liberal Christian would still have sex outside of marriage and is of the view that the bible telling us to abstain from sex is to protect us from the pain and hurt that comes with it and I do agree on some level. Due to sexual immorality and the bond created between two people after having sex, you leave yourself open to getting hurt and this is for both men and women, as women, we would show our hurt and you will know that we are hurt but most guys will try to hide it. Can a guy really say he doesn’t care if he never hears from a girl after sex??? (I wouldn’t know but I think they feel the pain too and just don’t say). When you are married and in a committed relationship, you are in it for the long haul, you know that you need to work through issues that may come up during your marriage but at dating stage, people can easily duck out after a disagreement. So yes, there is a reason why the bible tells us to abstain but if you do the deed, you need to know what you are setting yourself up for. It’s quite simple, you don’t get into a situation thinking there’ll be no consequence and it’s the same with sex. The liberal Christian believes in the try before you buy. Why? No scientific reason but imagine getting married without testing the goods, then you get married and the sexual connection isn’t there and the goods are not satisfactory???? *gasp* my answer to this was ‘there is always google to teach you some tips and tricks and there are some shops that provide additional assistance (if you know what I mean).’ Basically, the lib-view is that they will have sex, they are aware of the consequences and that you also need to try and guard your heart. Just don’t be too loose with the goods, loosey goosey. Like I mentioned, I would agree with the liberal view. I’m not one to sleep with just anyone but at the same time, I would like to take it out for a test drive first as sex is an important part of a relationship. You may connect with someone on one level but your connection after sex is on a much deeper level and could make a huge difference but to contradict myself, if I meet a guy that is happy to wait until after marriage then yes I’ll be happy to at the end of the day, we both know we are in it together and can make sure we limit the physical touches so nobody gets tempted past the point of no return. Will I have concerns on how the wedding night will turn out? Of course!!! But it’s not the end of the world and we live in a world that provides us with tools to help in most things. .
I want to abstain but he doesn’t –
Now this situation is a tough one as far as I am concerned because both parties need to be on the same page or open to working with each other so that the other person’s principles are not compromised but then again, that’s just my opinion, let’s expatiate. Say you meet a guy and before meeting you had made the resolution that you will keep yourself until marriage but this guy ticks all the boxes and comes across as a great person. You have most of the same beliefs, interests and are of the same faith but he does not believe in the no sex before marriage and then after a few weeks of dating, you end up in a situation where he wants to have sex, you’re getting those tingly feelings too but you’re having the inner battle of not “doing it” because you believe it’s not the right thing to do. You then give into your animalistic needs and the coitus happens, bear in mind that the other person is fully aware that you wanted to wait, then what? Should you feel guilty? Is the guy inconsiderate? Or, what’s happened has happened now, I still have my views and I don’t want this to happen again but he wants sex, so now what? Or, you’ve had sex now so might as well continue but as long as it’s just with the same guy? In my opinion, I think que sera sera – what’s done is done! The next step is to think about what is good for you and what you want! Feel guilty, yes but you can’t turn back the hands of time and you can’t dwell on the fact that you broke a rule. Don’t let it become a massive weight on your shoulders. If you are into the guy and he is also into you, I think, you can either work together where you are both happy. That is you either let go of that one rule or you let him know that you are not comfortable with “doing it” and see if he is happy to abstain with you but then again, he’s put his hand in the cookie jar already, that lid is off so will he really agree for the cookies to be stored away?! In this scenario, I think you need to be willing to let go of that relationship and find someone more suitable for you.
We should not have to feel pressured into doing something we don’t want to do or more appropriately, we should not feel pressured to give up something so valuable because when you have sex with someone, you are giving up a very valuable part of yourself because of the deeper connection that is formed from the act. Again, it goes back to the limbic bonding system. Often we get intuitive messages we can choose to listen to or ignore when it comes to prospective partners and maybe now is the time to develop the confidence and strength to listen. If you have doubts, listen to that inner voice and if the voice is saying don’t “DO IT” then just say no!!! Here’s the thing, it’s hard, especially if it’s a guy you are into but if he truly cares and wants to be with you then he will respect your wishes and even when you’re the one trying to make moves, he’ll be your support and remind you that you want to wait and it’s the same across the board not just girls trying to abstain and guys wanting sex. Sometimes, its girls wanting it and guys trying to abstain either way! NO (practice it) saying no can be fun! It’s certainly not easy though, especially when you’re
The Façade –
I love it when I tell people I’m a Christian, as in a practising Christian and they try to give me side eye. Why? I am liberal in terms of my views about sex and sexuality, I like to go out, I have tattoos and I love my wine and so on but some people have placed themselves in the position of judge and jury. Some of these people if you tell them about sex and ask their opinions about having sex, you would think that you had asked them to commit some grave sin. It’s a sad reality but yes you do get the hypocritical people that would preach abstinence and being the perfect person and tell you to abstain because it’s a sin and so on and so forth but do these people really preach what they preach or is it all a façade, a mask that they were for the outside world but what really happens behind closed door?
How do we know that they are practising what they are trying to preach and not doing the exact opposite when no one else can see them? I mean you can hide from the human eye but there is still that greater being that see what you do behind closed doors. If you want to preach the good word, then there is a way to do so without being offensive or judgemental, there is a way of trying to get people to understand if you think they are in the wrong without being rude. ‘take the log out of your eye before trying to take the speck out of someone else’s eye’. There is no one perfect person and we all fall short whether we want to or not and it’s because we are human. With regards to falling short when it comes to sex, it’s easier than you expect. When you are attracted to a person, research tells us that we produce certain hormones that affect our feelings: dopamine, the reward hormone; prolactin, the hormone of satiation; oxytocin, the cuddle hormone, and levels of androgen receptors, which all powerfully affect our mood, our desire for intimacy, our perception of our mate, as well as our susceptibility to addictive activities and substances Additionally the stimulant phenylethylamine (PEA) is involved. I’m no scientist so I can’t even begin to try and explain the above to you in more detail (sorry) but my understanding is that at some level, these hormones affect our moods and desires and at some level you find yourself with sexual desires for your partner. There are further scientific researches about what happens when the levels of hormones drop and these apparently could be an explanation as to why some relationships fail. At the end of the day, if someone is trying to explain to me why I should abstain before marriage, I’d appreciate a reasonable explanation but don’t point a finger and try to act all high and mighty!
What would He say?
I would love to get a male’s perspective on the topic, not a warped view or a sugar coated view or whatever, like a real point of view. I’m sure that on some level a guy would agree with most of the above as I feel it’s quite generalised even though it’s based mostly on the female perspective but what I would want to know is what else a guy would add to it, how they feel if they were abstaining or how they would react to a girl who wants to abstain? Just their view. Going back to the Limbic bonding, research notes that a male’s limbic emotional bonding is smaller than that of a female. Apparently, during sex, men and women are effected differently – Men release more dopamine while women release more Oxycontin, dopamine is more of a pleasure chemical while Oxycontin is more of a bonding and attachment chemical (after childbirth, women release more oxycontin and it’s towards the child). These two hormones alongside androgen receptors, prolactin and phenylethylamine (PEA) are created while having sex but the effects on the male and female differ.
Anyway, people/ research says that men have sex on their mind a lot more than women and because of the size of their limbic system, they are easy to please and easily distracted by the opposite sex… I hope I’ll be able to write more on the male view as I think it would be quite an interesting read.
A little bit more science – dopamine, the reward hormone; prolactin, the hormone of satiation; oxytocin, the cuddle hormone, and levels of androgen receptors, which all powerfully affect our mood, our desire for intimacy, our perception of our mate, as well as our susceptibility to addictive activities and substances. (Don’t ask I am just as confused by all this but I am looking to learn more).
I’ll need to end this here otherwise I may end up writing a book… I’d definitely appreciate comments and views though 🙂