It’s Just Sex, Dammit!

Can we allow ourselves to admit that sex just isn’t as important as we make it out to be?

This weekend we lost some friends.

The news came in the form of a phone call from one of the parties involved. It was a sad goodbye, letting us know that our couples’/family friendship, which we both enjoyed, was no longer. Their marriage was over. The culprit, of course, was sex.

I won’t pretend to empathize with either party. The pain they both must be going through is beyond my frame of reference. I won’t belittle it by offering platitudes. All I could do was offer condolences, reaffirm the “you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do”, and re-emphasize that although the nature of our friendship will never be the same, my love will still be there, unchanged.

To spend even 1% of all the hours in your life having sex, you’d have to spend roughly 90 minutes a week in the act of lovemaking. Married couples with kids will tell you (with a wink and a smile) that 90 minutes a week is a good week.

The totality of the news, taken in all its context, left me feeling ugly and defeated. Couple friends where the moms, dads and kids all get along simultaneously are hard to come by, and that loss was enough to put a damper on the day. But it was also a blow against faithful, committed relationships in a way that makes you feel sad and dirty at the same time.


What is this grip that sex has over us? Yes, I’m a scientist. I understand the evolutionary importance and the irresistible limbic-system drive to procreate. I understand the biological rationale for sprinkling sexual implications into every aspect of our lives. I understand the neurochemical rewards we receive for having sex — how it feels so damn good it incentivizes more of the same behavior later. I appreciate that it is such a primitive, bare-bones, evolutionary drive that it sits right at the center of the collective psyche of our species, and for that reason it’s a really easy place for all the broken bits of our lives to manifest themselves and express themselves in our sexual behavior.

But for crying out loud, it’s just sex.

How much time in our lives do we spend actually performing sex, compared with everything else? Even a p0rn-actor who goes to work and has sex from 9-5 spends only 40 hours a week (assuming no overtime) which boils down to less than 25% of all the hours in a week. To spend even 1% of all the hours in your life you’d have to spend roughly 90 minutes a week in the act of lovemaking. Though it’s certainly within the realm of possibility, married couples with kids will tell you (with a wink and a smile) that 90 minutes a week is a good week.

For something that takes up such a small fraction of the totality of what we do with our lives, how do we let it have such a grip over the rest? Entire industries revolve around sex. Those that don’t are infected by it whether they admit it or not. It’s everywhere. It’s inescapable; and yet, the success of my day has more to do with what the traffic on the freeway is like, rather than whether or not I had sex the night before. The emotional implications, the domestic implications and the health implications of our sexual practices seem ridiculously out of balance given everything else our lives require of us.

There are a thousand things necessary for a successful day and a successful life. Balancing the checkbook. Reading to the kids. Visiting your parents. Maintenance on the house. Laughing. Resting. Playing. Growing. Learning. These are the things of life. These are the things that determine whether we are fulfilled, whether we are successful in life. None of them require intercourse. And yet still we venerate sex as the ultimate goal in life, as if everything else is just a way of occupying time between sexual interludes. We high-five our friends when they “got lucky” or “got some” or “got some action” as if to say “Well done. You got that taken care of. Now you can move on to all the other stuff.”


Granted, there is no better way to foster intimacy with your partner than sex. It connects you and makes you vulnerable and draws you together with another person like no other way can. But when considering intimacy, it isn’t even necessary for that (blasphemy, I know). Imagine the potency of your partner gently running her fingers through your hair, or down your back. Picture those moments when you’re lost, looking into your partner’s eyes, and neither of you has to say anything. Think for a moment on the lasting rewards of gently holding hands, or on the way you can totally lose yourself in a deep, committed kiss. These too are the things of intimacy. Because of them, even if you never knew sex, surely you could still know intimacy.

To be cold and clinical, the only thing sex is absolutely *REQUIRED* for is baby making—and even in that case there are exceptions.

Last night lying in bed, after more than 10 years of marriage, I asked my wife “Do you trust me? I mean do you *REALLY* trust me?”

“Of course I do” she replied. “I wouldn’t have had three kids with you if I didn’t.”

She’s no dummy. The idea of me stepping out on her is laughable. First of all, even if I wanted to, there is no opportunity. I work from 7am – 6pm and I’m home within minutes for dinner. There are no real “nights out with the guys” or “business trips” which could be a cover for a clandestine meet-up with someone else. She’s all up in my life in a way that doesn’t allow for secrets. That’s just the way it is. Add to that the fact that in real life, guys like me just don’t get girls like her. She’s WAY above my station. She’s smarter than me. She’s more thoughtful than me. She’s a better parent than me. She’s more likeable than me. She’s infinitely better looking than me. She would have no problem finding a replacement for me. I, on the other hand, could never recover from losing her. Finally there’s also the fact that I am totally in love with her. She fills my cup completely. I look across the table at her and I can not imagine a better life.

And then she went and had my babies, and with each one I fell in love with her even more.

To lose all that for the fleeting, momentary, primitive, physical gratification of an extramarital tryst would be the height of insanity—even if I had the desire.


Which I don’t.

It serves no purpose to play the pious blogger, and I’m conscientious about coming across that way. I don’t think I’m any better than anyone else. I am a relativist at heart and I can appreciate that it takes two people to be in a relationship. You can never know what’s going on behind the curtain in a relationship you aren’t part of, or what’s going on under the hood in a life you haven’t lived. But I will say this:

If somehow the act of sex was cleanly extracted from my life leaving everything else intact, although it would be incredibly disappointing, as laughable as it may sound, my life in its entirety would be relatively unaffected. Everything that I need to get through my day would still be there. The love, the intimacy, the laughter, the living of life—I’d just have to find some other way to fill that 1% of my time.

This article originally appeared on Dork Daddy.

Photo by Porchelinn.

About Dork Daddy

During the work week the author is a mild-mannered dentist, but after work and on weekends he transforms into DORKDADDY!! When time allows he writes about raising two... wait, no three healthy, well-adjusted kids, while passing on a love of all things geek. His blog can be found at


  1. The things I find *really* curious here is, why did the friendship go? So, the couple is getting a divorce. Hard on them. But why does that mean you can no longer be friends?

  2. Is it just me, or does it seem that anyone who gets up in arms about a breach of trust in the “mutually exclusive” part of a relationship, puts way more emphasize on the “exclusive” part than on the mutuality…?

  3. Mr Supertypo says:

    For me at least, sex is relative. I have refused lot of women. Yes working part time in a nightclub pays off, but drunk girls arent really for me. Either they are sober or nothing. But I have to admit for me (at least) sex is quasi secundary, what is important in my eyes, is intimacy. Sex I can do it by my own (my right hand, mans best friend) but I cant with intimacy. I need another person. Sex is easy to attain (score, mercenary or self loving) but the other one is difficoult. Anyhow no matter how we turn the topic, sex in the relationship is important. Is like the glue. Without it the partners will slowly glide away. Both need to put the effort to keep the flame alive. If both partners fails, they are both responsable of the doom of the relationship.

    • @Mr Supertypo…

      “Anyhow no matter how we turn the topic, sex in the relationship is important. Is like the glue. Without it the partners will slowly glide away. Both need to put the effort to keep the flame alive. If both partners fails, they are both responsable of the doom of the relationship.”

      Ditto! And it is not going to change. If women just want to deny it or dismiss it or not ignore it, then so be it. But, fewer men are going to opt for committed relationships.

    • Physical intimacy is also easier to obtain for women, in addition to sex

  4. The author makes the very valid point that sex is not the only driver of a relationship, that there are many, many other things that keep relationships together, and many other ways to have intimacy. He’s also speaking from the monagmy model, which dosen’t work for every person either.

    But I’ll say this: in many situations where the sex life is going downhill, it is the symptom, not the cause of the relationship suffering. To put it bluntly, if your sex life is suffering, you’d better look really hard at every other aspect of your relationship, and see what isn’t working, because it’s probably not the sex that’s the culprit.

    • wellokaythen says:

      That’s a very good point. Just because sex can be a very important part of life doesn’t mean it’s independent of other things, and the quality of a sex life is highly dependent on the larger relationship.

      I can find some little piece of wisdom in the article if I look at it that way. Look at and improve other parts of one’s relationship and the sex life will likely get better. No guarantees on that, but a declining sex life in a relationship is not automatically irreversible. I can attest to that personally. And, having *some* sexual incompatibility is not the end of the world either.

  5. This article seems to have touched a nerve. I think we can acknowledge that sex is a basic human need and many people do not get the amount or quality of sex they would like. Feeling sexually undesirable can be soul crushing. I’m a woman who has never been considered conventionally “hot” or beautiful — I have a very average looking face and a so-so body, I’m too tall for most guys, and I completely lack a sense of fashion. I’ve gone through periods of my life where I had no opportunities for sexual relationships and I felt totally unwanted as a result of my sub-par appearance. The constant sense of rejection eats away at you. (And yes before anyone jumps in to say that even unattractive women can pick up guys in bars or Craigslist — that may be true, to a point, but it wasn’t what I wanted so it didn’t help me. We could debate it. All I’m saying is that I can relate to the feelings of rejection.)

    I think the author is just pointing out that there is much more to a committed relationship than just having a lot of sex, and that being obsessed with how much sex you are having just leads to unhappiness. Which is true. It’s like letting yourself be obsessed with the idea that you want more money or you want a bigger house or whatever. It’s not that those desires are wrong, but if you let your desires rule your life, you will always be unhappy. I’m not saying it’s ok to be in a relationship where your partner never wants sex or constantly rejects you. But if you have babies or small children and she’s too tired or distracted to keep up the honeymoon style sex life you used to have, maybe that is just one element of the relationship, not the be-all and end-all. It can work the other way too. My boyfriend started taking an anti-depressant and his sex drive crashed. Basically he only wants sex once a week now and the rest of the time, he almost seems indifferent – I can walk around stark naked and he barely glances at me. I’m not happy with the situation, But does that mean I break up with him? There’s a lot more to our relationship than just the frequency of sex.

    • Nick, mostly says:

      You’ve raised a few interesting points. Let me see if I can put a bit of perspective on a couple.

      First, you mention not having access to the sex you want. That’s fair, but I think many men feel they don’t have access to sex, full stop. Not just sex with their preferred type of partner, but with any type of partner. In essence, they’re complaining about having no options among which to choose, while you’re saying you don’t like the options you have. I’m not saying either position is better or worse than the other, only that perhaps you’re comparing different scenarios that lead to the same end: a lack of sex.

      It’s interesting, because Emily Heist Moss just wrote about this type of asymmetry in dating on Role/Reboot this morning. While not explicitly about sex, she acknowledges that she helps perpetuate the asymmetry by being a passive chooser among suitors rather than actively pursuing men in whom she’s interested. For some men, particularly the less attractive, less popular men, it can be soul-crushing.

      Second, a number of people seem to always choose hyperbole as the target of their argument. This is a form of red herring. You do it when you say, “she’s too tired or distracted to keep up the honeymoon style sex life you used to have.” I don’t think it fair to suggest that’s what men are after, or why they’re sexually dissatisfied in their relationships. Sometimes the sex has gone from 4-5 times a week to once a month–or less–and the kids aren’t babies any longer. Sometimes the partner doesn’t want to acknowledge it, or work on it. It’s not about honeymoon style sex, it’s about having a partner who seems indifferent to your sexual needs and desires while still insisting on monogamy cum celibacy.

      You say you’re less than satisfied in your own relationship, but you’ve also identified a culprit: antidepressants. Would your attitude be different if there wasn’t an identifiable cause, and if he refused to acknowledge or work on it? Would it be changed if he expressed apathy towards your sexual desires, rejected your advances, and insisted the problem was with you, not him? I think that’s the issue many men have in trying to help others understand their feelings – the situations on the surface look the same but are in fact different in important ways.

      • I just read Emily’s piece. My experience with online dating while poly was quite the opposite of hers. I approached a lot of men but (due to the poly) got turned down a lot. Which makes me question the whole “men will sleep with anyone and women will always be able to get laid whenever they want.” Cause clearly there were single men out there, finding me attractive but then not going for it due to that one barrier. So.

        I’ve always approached men and women I’ve been interested in and rarely get approached directly. Does it suck? Yeah, it does sometimes. Sometimes it makes me (or leads me) to feel really unattractive like, if I were actually cute, people would hit on me.

        But if I wasted time worrying about that I’d never approach people and I wouldn’t have had the amazing relationships I’ve had.

        My advice to Emily was to take those risks and ask men out. Also, we should really always go halvsies on first dates. Or accept that the person asking is paying. If I ask, I pay.

        • Nick, maybe I don’t get asked out because I don’t wear enough yoga pants? 😉

          • My advice to women like you, Sarah and Emily would be to conduct a little experiment

            First have a good assessment of your physical attractiveness. Say youre in the 40th percentile. Which mean if you line up 100 random women you happen to be better than 40%.

            Then you look for men who would beyour EQUAL in attractiveness, ie at 40th percentile.

            Make 2 profiles on a fcuk finder website. One using your pictures, another of a male who is your equal in attractivenss. Send out 100 messages to opp sex from each profile.

            Now wait for a week and compare the SUCCESS rate, ie the percentage of response.

            Chances are, no matter how mediocre and inadequate you are, your success rate would be pretty high. You can offer sex to 100 men and . 25 would say yes.

            While the man who is your equal is effin worthless. Its likely ANy woman at all will respond.

            But ofcourse ou dont want that. You want to be pursued, to be courted like the 23 yr hot babes and be the subject of poems in admiration of women’s beauty.

            • You women have it better than men who are your EQUALS.
              Way better

            • Uh, no I don’t. I have been the pursuer in the vast majority of my relationships and have never been the subject of poems and that sounds kind of horrible and weird to me. I pursued lots of average (cute to me, but usually nerdy or geeky) men who were put off by polyamory, like “you are sexy but that poly stuff is weird.” thus…men who are being offered sexytimes, and turning it down and then I hear that men never turn it down and that women never approach. I know you all want to believe this to be true, and I have no doubt that there do exist really entitled women who never ask men out, never date in their actual age/attractiveness range, but that’s not everyone. I just don’t believe men are as willing to “take anything” as they say.

              I have this friend who is always complaining about how women are just as you say. And how any woman can get a date etc. He’s always relationshipless. So I finally point out a woman who has a crush on him. She’s similar in looks to him, kind of nerdy and sweet, but neither of them are “hot” in a hollywood way. both are approaching middle age.

              When shown an actual woman who liked him, he said she wasn’t his type. So….what the hell? Men will take anything except when they won’t? Cause she’s not hot enough?

          • Nick, mostly says:

            Yes, definitely the yoga pants. Here, try these:

            Make sure to get them at least two sizes too small, so you have to oil up to get them on.

      • Nick
        First, you mention not having access to the sex you want. That’s fair, but I think many men feel they don’t have access to sex, full stop. Not just sex with their preferred type of partner, but with any type of partner. In essence, they’re complaining about having no options among which to choose, while you’re saying you don’t like the options you have

        Women find fewer men attractive and sexually desirable. So even if 10 average/alright looking men might be interested in having sex with a woman, who is totally mediocre in every aspect herself, they might not be good enough for her.

        Plenty of fat mediocre looking lazy women have told me that the sexual options they have are not good to them because the men they really want for sex are usually difficult to get (NOTE: not completely out of reach…just not avaialbe EASILY)

        Men find a much larger number of women attractive and sexually desirable.

      • Look, that’s a valid point I guess. I’m not interested in sex with men outside of a relationship so that means bars and Craigslist are not options. I have never pursued casual sex, I wanted a boyfriend. So, yes it’s different but I would argue that the feelings of rejection and loneliness are similar. I’ve had a few casual experiences in my life and I just feel lonelier afterwards as well as kind of ashamed of myself. It’s not worth it. What’s happened to me is that I’ve been constantly rejected as a potential relationship partner because they want a “hotter” girlfriend (guys have actually told me that) though yes there are probably guys who’d have sex with me if their friends didn’t find out. That is not a particularly good feeling.

        I have had very little success asking guys out as most guys don’t want to be pursued by women who are average looking or less. So I no longer bother. It’s better to let men self-select as then I don’t waste time on men who are looking for a more conventionally attractive woman.

        By the way, it’s not true that men will have sex with any woman. I’ve been turned down.

        • Nick, mostly says:

          Oh, I’m well aware it’s not true that men will have sex with just any woman. That’s all part of the stereotype, though. I don’t even think it’s necessarily true for the men who aren’t getting any sex, who are envious of women’s seeming ability to post a craigslist ad saying, “Is anyone up? I’m DTF.” and getting torrents of replies. It’s this idea that if women lowered their standards, they can probably get a taker, but if they lowered their standards, the probably still wouldn’t be getting any takers.

          It looks like a bit of “Oppression Olympics” if you ask me, but since I don’t live that experience I’m not ready to write it off as such. Instead I’m merely trying to see where the disconnect lies in our communication with each other, and explore how off-the-cuff dismissiveness doesn’t help each other to be heard.

        • wellokaythen says:

          I just realized that the “men will have sex with anything” stereotype can put a little shame on women as well. If a man turns a woman down for sex, and she’s been told over and over that men are indiscriminate, then the message to that woman is extremely negative. She then thinks, “how unattractive I must be, turned down by someone with no standards at all….” Time to drop the “sex with anything” trope, because it’s bad for everyone all around.

          • Well, you can either decide that if “all men will have sex with anything” and they aren’t having sex with you that either a) you are horribly unsexable or b) all men WON”T have sex with anything” and that they do indeed have barriers to getting to sex just like women do.

            It’s better to deconstruct the myth rather than decide you are unsexable. Men have all kinds of reasons for saying no, just like women do.

            • There is no point thinking in absolutes.

              Men are a lot more forgiving to women on looks when it comes to casual sex.
              They find a much larger number of women attractive
              So every woman can expect to be found sexually acceptable by a considerabe no of men.

              There is a significant difference of degree, here. I cant see why some people have a problem acknowledging this unmistakable dynamic.

            • A common logical fallacy used to refute a claim, is to distort it and take it to its logical, impossible extreme.

              When women are told that its easier for them to obtain casual sex than its is for men, they distort it into “Women can get sex whenever they want with whomever they want” Obviously the latter is much easier to disprove and is obviously impossible, if only due to physical and logistical limitations.

              Similarly when told that men find a much larger number of women attractive, and are generally more forgiving on looks when considering casual sex, women say “I don’t believe ALL men will have sex with ANY/EVERY woman” followed by anecdotal example of a woman who was refused by a particular man.

            • I get an entirely different vibe here from women, vis a vis dating/sex/relationship forums where the easy availability of casual sex seems more of menace to women than an advantage.

              Most women actually have no qualms about acknowledging that obtaining casual sex is way more easier for them than it is for men. They just say that its unimportant to them (which I disagree with but is a topic for another day). They belittle this fact as much as possible – “yes we have the ability to make men put their genitalia in ours…so what?” and “why do you let sex define yourself? sex isnt as important as a meaningful relationship”

              Most of the dating advice for women, in a way, is aimed at how to avoid getting laid easily.

              Then there are forums/blogs for fat women to discuss their dating/relationships woes and the most common gripe is how guys, who’d sleep with them over and over again, wouldn’t date them. I wonder how we account for this ‘sex’.

              That vibe is quickly changed when I come to this website.


              I understand some woman’s reluctance to admit this because it would cheapen their own sex lives and experiences. Afterall, if men are relatively indiscriminate and routinely drop their standards for casual sex, and don’t require women to be ‘all that’ for this purpose; what does it say about the women they choose?

              Then, women grow up being ingrained how important it is to be good looking. Thats the pressure of media and society but they conflate it with men’s sexual preferences. As grown ups, seeing average looking woman dating and having sex with plenty of men, is perhaps something they don’t want to believe and turn a blind eye to. It isn’t easy to let go of the core belief they swallowed long ago, that every man wants a beautiful perfect looking creature.

              • I think most women eventually learn that just because a guy wants sex with us, it doesn’t necessarily mean anything about how he feels about us beyond monentary sexual attraction. I saw a venn diagram once on a dating website which illustrated the dilemma women face. In one circle was all the guys who want her for sex and in another circle was all the guys who like her as a person (including her dad, her relatives, gay men friends etc.) and her challenge is to find the guys in the small area of overlap. So women have to do a lot of weeding out. And having casual sex does not help the weeding out process.

                • @Sarah…

                  “I think most women eventually learn that just because a guy wants sex with us, it doesn’t necessarily mean anything about how he feels about us beyond monentary sexual attraction.”

                  Ok. But Sarah is this not EXACTLY what occurs when a woman finds a f**k buddy or FWB. She too has no interest in anything beyond the sex.

                  See, this is what I get frustrated about with women: it is OK for you (women) to do casual sex, have f**k buddies etc. But, not for me as a man.


                • I think it depends on how the woman has sex with her partner. If it’s a chore, performed rarely or grudgingly… yes, wanting sex is a momentary attraction. I’ve stopped putting much effort into pursuing it. Because I’m tired of rejection and because our sex life is so routine. Because most of the time I feel deprived of it and am accordingly resentful. I wouldn’t have married for this.

                  But before that changed, I recognized what a catch she was… a generous and adventurous lover and expected our sex life to be an ongoing source of stimulation and pleasure; a source of excitement and vitality and felt that I could find novelty again and again in this one woman. If not for this impression, I would not have married. Not for intelligence or sense of humor; not for looks or a compassionate spirit—all of which she’s got by the way. When the sex was really good, desire was not a display of momentary sexual attraction, I appreciated everything else about her far more than I do now.

                  But a husband, it seems eventually gets put on the to-do list and is the least important thing on it.

                  • I meant that as a description of my own life experience. I hope you don’t think I meant it as any judgement of you or yours. Just an example of how one man’s thoughts on things have changed over time.

                  • I’ve heard so many stories like that and I honestly wonder what happens to cause it. Is she just bored with sex? Medical problems? Too tired? Did it start after you had kids?

                    • Probably started around the kids. Worsening over time. It’s a feedback thing. She loses interest in meeting my sexual needs, I lose interest in meeting her emotional needs. Anger, resentment, etc…

                    • I find that in a long term relationship, sex can get boring. Men seem to like falling into a routine and just doing the same thing they always do because they know it works. Women like anticipation, teasing, flirting, sexual tension, emotional connection, and variety. it seems like a lot of couples get into a vicious cycle where both parties are unhappy with their sex life but they can’t break out of the negative pattern.

                    • I’m the one bemoaning routine in our house. But, definitely, being with someone who won’t engage your fantasies or share any of hers = boring sex life.

                    • another husband says:

                      I can second that. I’ve stopped having sex with my wife because no sex is better than boring sex and she’s unwilling to talk about it or work on it. I feel like I’m in Annie Hall: “the sex is so boring, and we only have it once a month!”

                  • @ a husband.

                    Google “Athol Kay.” Or better yet, buy his book on Amazon. Put it to work and your gripes about having a sexless marriage will soon become a distant memory. I know it sounds like hyperbole, but this guy is for real and has changed a lot of guys sex lives around, without the costly expense of marital counseling. Seriously, at least go and give it a whirl.

                  • Yup!!! it a giant shit sammich! Most men do not realize this until we get into it. The reason is women have a preference for men whom they want to have sex with and men whom they wish to marry. In most cases, they are mutually exclusive.

                    I have been there and shall not return.

                    If you’re a man an want a sex life then AVOID marriage at all cost(s). If you have the money and do not have anything against sex workers, that is the best way to go.

                • Haha… Oh, and it still gets more complicated than that even.

                  The most desirable of men, the kind of guys that you want to be having sex with, generally have their pick of women. Even if he’s the smoothest guy in the world, there’s a small part of you that’s going to be setting off the “he must be a player” alarm somewhere in your head. That part of you will want to resist having sex with him too soon, but if you hold back too long, you risk losing him to another more willing or attractive girl. Most times, that window is much smaller than you think. The one thing most women forget is that attractive men are just as likely to weed them out, as opposed to the other way around.

                  • True, but, if you don’t want to date a player, it’s actually a good thing if he gives up quickly and moves on.

                    If you are only interested in casual sex, though, then yeah, bed the player. At least he’ll know his way around and won’t bother you by calling the next day. 🙂

    • @Sarah Do you think it would be an option for him (your bf) to use some natural forms of anti-depressants. There is proof that yoga and other natural methods (like diet change and herbs) are more effective than pills in treating many illnesses including depression. I just sounds like you’re a bit upset by not having sex as often as you’d like and it might eventually cause a problem. I’ve been on anti-depressants and to be honest I’m surprised that your boyfriend even wants to have sex once a week. Have you talked to any other types of doctors about his medicine and other alternatives….. But I guess it also depends on how bad his depression is and maybe idk maybe he’s already tried other stuff.

      Btw I was really tall and lanky too growing up. Kids made fun of me in school so I know the feeling of seeing everyone else have relations lol and not having them yourself. It’s that whole (I want to do what everyone else is doing) effect plus with the media and stuff. I didn’t want to but at the same time I was a teen so of course the urge was there but I just said no lol. I’m happy I waited until I was older. Good luck with your bf 🙂

    • I hear you, Sarah….your relationship with your good BF is somewhat unsatisfying….you also believe that you cannot attract better into your life because of your attractiveness level….and that must be causing quite a bit of angst….

      I have been watching PUA/ RSD (Real Social Dynamics) videos on youtube…initially, some of the stuff made me really angry…but some of it was quite fascinating…about how to change your life and open up your mind and attract better people and experiences into your life….if you have time or the interest, check out RSD (Tyler or Julien) on youtube when they talk about being awesome or when they travel to cool hotspots…I don’t agree with a lot of the PUA stuff that they promote, but some of what they observe is quite interesting…

      • Is there anything PUA’s have to say that would apply to women? It seems like their advice to women would be: (a) be young. (b) Be hot. Since to a PUA, there’s no other reason to be with a woman…

        • Mr Supertypo says:

          Adapt yourself to the dating reality. Thats the synthesis behind the PUA doctrine.

        • The real question is: just why does PUA exist?

          Too many sexually frustrated men who see a double standard on the part of women.

          Look, you are attracted to whom you are attracted. Unfortunately, most women only find a few men attractive. Why even Ester Perle notes this in her book “Mating In Captivity.” It has been documented in scholarly research. Lisa Gottlieb points this out in her book, “Just Marry Him….”

          So, just what can we men do about it? NOTHING!

          • Esther Perle AND Lisa Gottlieb… nice work. Two great books that few women will ever read, and fewer still will ever heed.

            • I liked the first book, I thought it was insightful about the difference between love and desire. But reading a summary of the second, it sounds like Gottlieb is encouraging women to marry men they don’t feel passionate about. Which is kind of the opposite of Jules point. If your wife isn’t passionate about you, your sex life and life in general will kind of suck. Ask me how I know.

              • I also find the message given to women in books like “Just Marry him” very cringe-worthy from a mans perspective. It seems these authors/experts are encouraging women to be disingenuous and marry men they are not really passionate about and not that sexually attracted to.

                while addressing women, these authors beware women that attractive/desirable men might appear to be attainable initially but are only available for flings and casual sex relationships…not committment and marriage. So they should marry the beta males. I dont think any self respecting man would want to be in that position. Thankyou very much. I would rather hire prostitutes.

                • But that seems like what a lot of men are saying in comments about relationships and sexuality that I read on GMP and elsewhere — that women are too shallow and always chase the assholes/alpha male types, while ignoring the better guys who are shyer and less flashy. (Call them nice guys or beta males if you will.) If women are going to pursue a broader variety of men, that means being willing to pursue men who may push fewer “attraction buttons” but make better partners.

                  • @Sarah….

                    “If women are going to pursue a broader variety of men, that means being willing to pursue men who may push fewer “attraction buttons” but make better partners.”

                    I think what Ms. Gottlieb is really saying is you women need alter what you view as attractive in men. If women would cease and desist with most women being attracted to the same types of men, there would be more “attraction buttons” immediately. In essence, broaden your horizons.

                    Marrying a man that is a great husband, father, and family man is the wrong way to go if there is no sexual attraction. I would argue that Ms. Gottlieb is NOT advocating such.

                  • Sarah

                    I dont think anyone has a right to expect women to change their preferences in men. i’ve been debating this topic for a decade now and my whole objective is for women and society to acknowledge that they’re more selective of the 2 sexes. If women are shallow, if very few men push their attraction buttons, then so be it. I just want men to be fully aware of the reality of female sexuality.

                    • @Tim…

                      Women are more selective ONLY when it comes to marriage and/or long term relationships. I cannot understand how you could possibly believe women are more selective when they will have sex with a man whom they would not even consider dating!!!! Does not sound very selective to me.

                      Women do this frequently. When their “market value” drops after age 30, usually they then seek out more “selective” men to marry…..Total disaster for the unlucky many. Usually, this chosen soul will not have the sexual attraction of her previous lovers….Thus the man is going to be confined to years of sexual misery and torment.

                      So, do you really think women are more selective? It really depends.

                • @Tim….

                  No. She (Ms. Gottlieb) is not advocating “bait & switch” or other disingenuous methods. Quite the contrary.

                  She is really trying to get women to change their thinking on what really makes a man attractive. As she stated in the book, the very men most women are super attracted to make lousy long term partners.

      • @Leia: I’ve spent a couple years off and on engage in the PUA lifestyle… and I’ll be first to say that better than 95% of it is complete and utter crap. The other 5% of it, however, can be life-changing. Tyler and Julien (among others) are living proof of that. I’d humbly throw myself in that category as well.

        The crazy thing is… like most types of advice, only a tiny fraction of the men who expose themselves to this stuff (I’d guess far less than 5%) will ever truly be able to take full advantage of it. It’s like that with just about anything… dieting, financial advice, dating, whatever. Most people will never get, and of the ones who will, better than 90% of them have already figured it out on there own (or eventually would have anyway). So I stand by my (unsolicited) opinion that most men would do well to avoid the PUA movement altogether.

        @Sarah: The PUA lifestyle is not indicative of most men want. Well, actually it is, but there’s a significant difference between what most people want and what they are realistically able to achieve. It’s not like most self-proclaimed PUAs are running around banging Maxim and Playboy models or anything either.

        PUA and most other dating advice is simply about understanding and maximizing what value you bring to the world and to your dating life. You can’t take 20 years off of your life, but you can also certainly do more to improve your looks. Proper dieting and fitness alone will put you in the top 10-20% of women in your age bracket alone. Add in some homemaking skills and a genuine appreciation of men, and you’ve put yourself in a rather elite category. I’ll be honest here… I know plenty of very attractive women in their late 30s, 40s, and even a few 50+-year-olds. Very few, if any of them, can compete with even a moderately attractive girl in her early 20s. But the upside is that few of the men they’re attracted to even have access to girls in their 20s, so it’s a moot point. Not having access to the best men in the world is no reason to give up on putting yourself in a position to grab the best men in YOUR world.

  6. I begin to wonder if the problem is that partners aren’t satisfied sexually. I know from having sex with men
    that alot of or most men really don’t do what women want sexually and as a result women just lose interest. Also men want really kinky things sexually at the same time that their partner is NOT being satisfied. I’ve always thought that it’s necessary for our new only heterosexual lives as per the Bible bleh for there to be mandatory sexual education classes, however not simply and only to show the effects of sex etc..but to show how to do it to please a member of the opposite gender especially women. I feel the statistics show proof that women are not satisfied sexually and being afraid to hurt male egos or whatever they fake orgasms and then after marriage they just decide to stop having sex as much (I’ve actually seen women say and assume that after marriage the amount of sex will be reduced). I’ve been with guys and talked to many women and we all have the same complaint, that men are not sexually compatible with us and therefore we’re just not satisfied. I think it’s possible that alot of women hope that once there are children in a relationship that men will stick around and form a new bond that doesn’t require sex. Sadly media keeps telling men that sex is the only way to keep a romantic bond (and also that sex should be done quickly with not much foreplay and blah blah blah) so the “problems” still persists.

    Just like is seen in business situations, women are afraid to be assertive and say what they want plainly and until we do there will be a continuing problem between the genders when it comes to sex and relationships especially if we continue to uphold against all statistics, anatomy and our past that relationships should be between members of the opposite genders and should be “til death do us part”.

  7. I had sex a couple of times with a gf I had when I was 19.
    There was a 3 yr gap before I had the next sexual experience. Since then I havent had any (I’m 28 now)

    So there you go. My sex life meets your criteria many men and women enter sexual relationships before there is any long-term commitment.

    How the fcuk is it regular, convinient, frequent sex and physical intimacy without bending backwards

    I know what youre thiking. That Im a sad fucking loser, But I’ve refuted your flawed reasonsing already.

    • ^
      Thats for you, Nick mostly

    • Nick, mostly says:

      If you’re a sad fucking loser it’s more apt to be because your logic sucks and not because of the frequency of your sexual congress. But unless I know you (and if I do, I’ve got your pole trimmer in my garage if you need it back) I’m not a good judge of the truth of that proposition.

      I didn’t propose any argument or reasoning; instead I countered your argument by saying that plenty of people enter monogamous marriages even though they’re already having marriage-free sex. Or put another way, men have access to frequent sex and still get married anyway. No logical fallacy there because all I’ve shown is and example of “P and ¬Q” that refutes your “If P → Q” construction.

      • You didnt initially say men who have access to frequent sex still get married anyway

        You said men who have had pre-marital sex still get married
        This can easily refer to a guy who only had sex a few times with a gf or managed a few one night stands in 2 decades, or it can refer to a guy who is getting laid left and right.


        Anyways, I totally disagree that the vast majority of young males (thats a good 60%) have access to frequent casual sex, hooking up, one night stands, booty calls, friends with benefits, flings, affairs etc or any other variant of NSA sex.

        Most men do not get the opportunity to be promiscuous. Pursuing a single female, dating her and entering into a relationship with her, is the only way for most men to have a sex life. For most men, its just the 2-3 gf’s before they finally settle down with one.

        Since most men realize that dating and sexual oppurtunities only come once in a blue moon and require a lot of effort to materialze, they realize that entering into a relationship and securing a female is the most feasible way, instead to bending backwards and keep hunting in the wild with very long dry spells.

        • Nick, mostly says:

          Anyways, I totally disagree that the vast majority of young males (thats a good 60%) have access to frequent casual sex, hooking up, one night stands, booty calls, friends with benefits, flings, affairs etc or any other variant of NSA sex.

          Fine, disagree then.

          Wait, who are you disagreeing with? I just checked and sure enough, I never made the claim that “the vast majority of young males have access to frequent casual sex.” That must have been that other guy; he’s the spitting image of me, only he’s made of straw.

      • Can’t say if “Nick, mostly” is arguing just to argue, or if he really is completely missing Tim’s point… but I’ll say this: Of the handful of men I know who are easily able to acquire frequent, casual sex from a variety of women, not a single one of them has any interest in marriage whatsoever. They (we) do often end up in long-term committed relationships, but it’s rare that they remain monogamous past the first six months or so. I know I can’t speak for every man, but my personal experience bears out Tim’s assertion.

        If the average man finds it hard to acquire a sex partner, it only makes sense that when they do find one, they’re much more willing to hang on to them. That doesn’t mean that they seek out women for relationships. They very well could seek out women for primarily for sex, but settle into relationships after failing to acquire sex by other means. If they fear losing this sexual access (a common trait among men who’ve struggled to gain this access in the first place), they might very well continue this commitment into marriage even though they were already having marriage-free sex.

        Besides, it’s not that hard to see how Tim’s assertion actually plays out in real life. Gay men are less committed and tend to have far more sexual partners than straight men because they can easily find “regular, convinient, frequent sex and physical intimacy without bending backwards” from other men. In addition, feminized, openly sexual societies tend to have higher ages at first marriage and birth than more conservative societies, because men and women both put off serious commitment when marriage-free sex is relatively easy to find.

        Besides, there is a ton of research in the fields of evolutionary biology and social psychology that seems to support Tim’s idea that when men find it easy to acquire commitment-free sex, they are less likely to engage in long-term commitment, especially in the form of marriage. An idea can be cliché and still contain more than a grain of truth to it…

        Suggested Reading:

        Buss, David, and David Schmitt. “Sexual Strategies Theory: An Evolutionary Perspective on Human Mating.” Psychological Review. Version Vol 100, Number 2. The American Psychological Association, 10 Mar. 1992. Web. 21 Feb. 2013. .

        • This is rather depressing. What you are saying is that there is no reason for a woman to have a relationship with a man. Either he’s a player who will cheat, or he’s a loser who is glomming onto the only available female for sex but is secretly bitter and resentful.

          • Men in the last remaining matriarchal society the Musou tribe seem pretty happy. They aren’t forced to do “til death do us part” and they don’t get forced to pay child support or alimony and they don’t get forced to live in a house with women who nag or tell them they’re dirty or to put down the toilet seat or to take their feet off the table etc..etc..etc.. Like I said I think this whole marriage / only heterosexual relationships nonsense based off of a simple book is just odd and not working nor has it ever worked.

            Insanity at it’s worst

            Don’t be depressed. We’ve always known what DD has said. It’s just hard to hear it spelled out so plainly.

          • @Sarah,

            I’d have to say that what you wrote in response to my initial post is a gross misrepresentation of what I said. Tim’s argument was that sex was one of the primary motivating factors for men to pursue relationships with women… To me, and most men that I know, this much is plainly obvious. Why anyone would argue against that is beyond me, but I was simply trying to point out that there is a significant body of evidence that suggests this to be true, despite Nick mostly’s claims to the contrary.

            That’s not to say that sex is the only thing that matters… it’s quite obviously not. But it is a prime motivating factor.

            Anyway… unless you’re trying to punch way out of your league and date only athletes, musicians, and actors, then what I wrote is mostly a non-factor. Most men can’t get sex whenever they want to and are generally plenty happy to land the partners they do. If anything, its women who tend to be less satisfied with their partners, if for no other reason than the fact that they often have far more opportunity to “trade up” if a relationship grows stale, so it’s harder for them to justify staying in an unsatisfying relationship.

            • Sorry but re-reading your comment, it sounds like you were saying that men don’t really want relationships, but that men who can’t get enough casual sex will settle for being in a relationship just to get sex. My question is, why should I want to be in a relationship with a guy who feels that way? Sounds like a terrible basis for a long term relationship.

              • @Sarah…..

                Most married women wan to be married but are not terribly interested in sex. So, it begs the question from the male perspective: why should I want to be in a relationship with a woman who feels that way? Sounds like a lousy basis for a long term relationship.

                Too many women, yourself included, simply refuse to address the matter of sex and marriage. Honestly, any man who thinks marriage is going to be the answer to his lack of sex is just plain stupid.

              • “men are either players OR losers who can’t get laid easily and only commit reluctantly, grudgingly and resentfully”

                Interesting dichotomy you’ve put forward. I would only partially agree with it because its more complicated than that. There is no point thinking in absolutes.

                I think most men don’t dwell upon that resentment for long (unlike me). They find a nice woman and move on. They go on to have healthy fulfilling relationships with those women.

                But every now and then, specially on a guys night out, when listening to the sexual escapades of the perpetually single good looking stud in the group, they look at him with envy and everyone knows that is the ideal life they all wanted.

                That doesn’t mean they don’t love their gf’s and wives. Men are not heartless creatures after all: devoid of any need for emotional bonding; who don’t grow fond of women they’ve been with; and would trade them for a steady supply of casual sex with a variety of women. I’m also sure many lovestruck, impassioned males would vociferously disagree with me that men commit and marry because sex is not easily available to them otherwise.

                But I believe there are certain forces that channel men towards those relationships in the first place, and the biggest of those forces is the unavailability of convenient nsa attached sex.

                Actually, most men don’t resent committing, to begin with.. Most young men just take for granted that if they want sex they have to get a girlfriend. When a young single male bemoans his sexual frustration, his friends, family and society in general tells him “why don’t you get a girlfriend”; when he might have been perfectly content with having flings, friends-with-benefits, NSA sex. This guy obviously won’t resent it when he finally gets the girlfriend, because he never considered casual sex to be a serious option.


                I’m not saying that NO man on this planet would be interested in committed, monogamous relationships, if men could obtain sex easily. I’m just saying there would be much much fewer of them, than there are now. Most importantly, the dating and relationships landscape would be very different.

                Perhaps most men would still be open to commitment and marriage but they’ wouldn’t be willing to put in the same effort to pursue women for it, as they do now. Perhaps the convention of the man getting down on his knees, offering a diamond ring, to propose would vanish. Perhaps women would be doing most of the proposing in that world.

                Perhaps we’ll see men doing more dumping, initiating more divorces than they do now, knowing that it won’t be months or years before another woman comes into their life….Knowing they can start dating and having sexual relationships with women immediately.

                Perhaps more men would want open relationships, knowing their sexual options are not limited to their gf’s / wives. Perhaps there might be a lot more ‘players’

                Perhaps we might see a shift in mens motivations to get married. They might only consider marriage necessary if they want kids, or as a means of financial support.

                Perhaps most men would still have committed relationships and get married but only much later in their lives …say, well into their 30’s when their sex drives are off the peak, when they are exhausted emotionally and physically and want to wind down; when the hairline begins to recede, the waistline expands and the erections get less stiff.

                Like I said, what’s the point of thinking in absolutes?

                • Not sure what the benefit to wonen is in the world you describe though yes it would be better for men. As a woman it would mean lots of meaningless sex while young followed by a long period of loneliness and isolation after, I don’t know, age 45. Maybe women would develop more lesbian relationships for long term companionship and support since men would not provide it. Maybe a matriarchal society would develop around women and children supporting themselves, with men being viewed prinarily as accessories or sexual playthings or sperm donors. (I feel there is an alternate reality/sci fi novel in this somewhere…)

                  You are also assuming that all men would have equal access to sex in such a world. I think women would be even more inclined to select the most desirable men since the only criteria is sexual attraction (not LTR potential)

                  • The world that Tim described is almost exactly the world that I live in… and yeah, I agree that it’s hard for me to see the benefit for women in it over the long-term. The crazy thing though is this is what women have asked for. The world that Tim described is the natural end point of sexual liberation.

                    Your point is valid as well. My extended social network includes a couple hundred guys, and I’d be willing to be a good sum of money that I’ll have more sexual partners in a year than 80+% of them will have in a lifetime. Again though, this is the world that women chose. I used to always tell my female friends that they should cash in their chips early, pick the best man they can find NOW, and get on with the business of marrying and having kids if they are serious about their future. I even posted a 600-word Facebook “rant” about how ridiculous it was that women were consistently deciding to pick guys like me (a known player who is emphatically against marriage) over nicer, more committed guys who were serious about wanting marriage and kids (which is what I used to be before I realized how dramatically our social climate and women’s sexual attitudes have shifted towards a more sexual open society). In response I got several dozen comments, most of them from women, basically calling me a misogynistic a-hole who wanted to go back to the old days of women being barefoot and pregnant for most of their adult lives. At that point I threw up my hands, and said “F’ it. You get what you ask for…” silently shut down my Facebook account, and went back to being a “player.” Don’t really know what else to add to that. I still think its f’ed up, but I’d much rather enjoy cashing in on this dysfunctional world we live in rather than sitting on the sidelines b*tching about how bad it is.

                    • I don’t think that’s what all women have chosen. I’ve read studies that indicate only 20% of college women are engaged in so-called “hookup” culture. I think a lot of women ARE looking for relationships but that doesn’t mean they make good choices about partners. Women are often attracted to men who are exciting and confident over men who aren’t , just like men prefer women who are more physically attractive over women who are less physically attractive. PUA’s and players can use that to their advantage. I would be the first to say that many women can be pretty stupid about their relationship choices.

                  • Sarah

                    The premis of the world I’ve attempted to describe, is that men have easy access to casual sex., just like women do now. Its a presumption, no matter how unrealistic.

                    No, Im not saying even in that world, ALL men will have equal access to casual sex. Im just saying that if 15-20% men have access to casual sex now, maybe 75-80% men will have access to it in that world….just like in the real world, 80% of young women are attractive enough to obtain casual sex easily.

                    I think women would be even more inclined to select the most desirable men since the only criteria is sexual attraction (not LTR potential)

                    That is absoutely correct and this is what we are witnessing in the increasingly permissive sexual marketplace. But its a circular argument because I pre-supposed that women in that world wouldnt be as sexually selective as they really are and would allow most men to obtain casual sex easily. Just like men allow most women to obtain casual sex easily.

                    • Yes it would be a lot different in that case, maybe like gay culture was in the 1970’s, after sexual liberation but before AIDS.

        • I’m a firm believer based on our anatomy and brains that humans were and are still supposed to be mainly homosexual and only have sex with the opposite gender for the sake of procreation and that is why many men go straight for penetration and ejaculate so quickly when with women even though women want hours of “proper” foreplay which in most cases is usually necessary to even have an orgasm. Women want bonding long term relationships and men don’t. Our brains are just so different and as a result during our many centuries of forcing/forming the dichotomy between the genders we’ve used nurture to exacerbate these differences between the genders and it’s hurting us alot.

          • @harry….

            Women want bonding long term relationships and men don’t.

            I disagree. There are many many men who desire LTRs and marriage. I was once one of those men. However, due to the disinterest in sex shown by my wife and the mental torment it caused, I elected to divorce.

            I truly believe their are men whom women wish to have good hot sex with and men whom they desire for LTRs. They are completely different men.

            The very frustrating aspect of all of this is women just refuse to admit it. When you find the majority of married men complaining about the paucity of sex in the marriage AND an unwillingness of many wives to address it, something is just wrong with the whole thing.

            Potential Solution: Women, how about marrying the men whom you like hot sex? Is it right in a moral sense to treat your husband in an inferior manner, just because it makes YOU happy? Is their any really empathy on the part of many married women for their husbands? I say NO in too many cases. So, marriage to many men like me is viewed as a bad stock. It should be AVOIDED.


            • Co-signed.

              You really should consider going back and reading the article I cited earlier… or anything by David Buss really. The idea that women have sex with “bad boys” and marry “nice guys” (who they don’t necessarily want to have sex with) isn’t just a myth… it’s a well-researched and established social and biological phenomenon. The destruction of the old mores surrounding sex has destroyed many of the natural inhibitions women had towards displaying their trues sexual natures, and as a result the “bad boys” are cleaning up.

              I’ll give you an example of the two worlds that exist to men from my own personal life. My current girl was a virgin until marriage. For 28 years she surrounded herself with “nice guys” who were prime marriage material and dated them for months at a time with no real sexual contact other than the occasional handjob or bj. Then she met a guy, and after six months of dating he put a ring on a finger so that she’d start having sex with him. Eventually they married and stayed married for five years. Eventually they ran into some problems and separated. When I met her, she was still technically married, but just weeks out from a divorce. Unbeknownst to me, she’d also been seeing a couple of different guys, including a guy she’d been going out for close to six weeks…

              She slept with me on the first date despite having only known me for about three hours. She’s told me repeatedly since then that she’s kind of uncertain of the whole thing (since she’s not “that kind of girl”), but that our sexual chemistry is the best thing she’s ever experienced with a guy. She even has suspicions that I’m seeing other people, but refuses to let go of the relationship we’ve developed…

              The message here is obvious: Sex matters. A lot more than “Dorkdaddy” and others on this board would like to admit to. And it’s in your best interest as a man to be the kind of guy that women want to have sex with VERY quickly…

  8. I really find it funny when someone tries to downplay the importance of sex in marriage and relationships. Usually such voices come from women.

    These people feel that their view on the prioirty and importance of sex in marriage would be reciprocated.

    I’m gonna say that The assurance of regular, convinient, frequent sex and physical intimacy without bending backwards, is the biggest incentive for the vast majority of men to get into a committed monogamous relationships (marriage)

    Im not saying that sex is the only thing that keeps a man in marriage.
    Because in most marriages, familiarity sets in and kills passion, people grow apart, have children and get too busy with other things, sex goes down the priority list, there are sexless marriages etc.
    Im just saying its the biggest incentive to get married initially, for most men.

    If sex, physical intimacy and companionship was as easily available to men as it is to women, marriage would hugely go out of favor with men. Men would be a lot more reluctant to get married than they are now. They would delay marriage until much later (well into their 30’s) OR they woud only marry when they really really fall in love with a woman for reasons other than sex. Men will also start making 100 point lists of what they want in Ms Right.

    Women can go ahead and keep beleiving such is not the case.

    • Nick, mostly says:

      So essentially fewer men would buy the cow if the milk was free.

      But that doesn’t appear to be supported by the evidence – many men and women enter sexual relationships before there is any long-term commitment.

      Now I might believe you if you said that fewer people would enter into marriages if they felt their spouses might unilaterally end the sexual part of the relationship. But I doubt few people have a conversation about that possibility, let alone think it’s at all likely in their own relationship.

      • But that doesn’t appear to be supported by the evidence – many men and women enter sexual relationships before there is any long-term commitment

        Yes, many guys have ‘pre-marital sex’ at some point in their life. Whats the point here?

        • Nick, mostly says:

          I don’t know what the point is; it was your assertion that “the assurance of regular, convinient, frequent sex and physical intimacy without bending backwards, is the biggest incentive for the vast majority of men to get into a committed monogamous relationships (marriage).” I don’t see any evidence for that. Do you? And if so, can you share?

    • wellokaythen says:

      When many men sign on to monogamous marriage, they are essentially signing up for periods of celibacy as much as signing up for regular sex. I think for many men this is a common source of disillusionment in their marriages, that on some level they convinced themselves that marriage comes with a good sex life, but the long-term reality may be quite different. (This happens to women, too, of course. There are sex-starved wives out there.)

      This is what bothers me about the larger taboos protecting monogamy. Not uncommonly, a vow of monogamy means a vow of celibacy for long periods. Just by default. As a society we should at least be honest about that. If my spouse isn’t having sex with me and I’ve agreed not to have sex with anyone else, then I am practicing celibacy, even if it’s just temporary. Zero means zero. You should only accept monogamy if you are prepared to accept temporary celibacy.

      • As a twice (and still) married man, I agree. With more life experience behind me, I can alternately laugh or cry at the naiveté of my never-married self, but I used to look forward to marriage as among other things, meaning as much sex as I wanted with the person I wanted it with most. The “wanted it with most” part is pretty durable, but the “as much as I wanted” turned out to be just a daydream.

    • I didn’t get married to “have access to sex”. There’s way to do that that’s far less complicated. When I talk to me about their relationships, most seem to have a similar experience.

      There’s something to be said for going from “casual partners” to “going steady” as a way to make sex easier. But beyond that?

      Lots of men actually get married because they fall in love, because they would like to build a family, have children, etc. Novel idea, huh?

      • Lars, i’ve dealt with your straw man arguments in numerous posts on this thread. Please read my posts below especially in response to Sarah and Nick Mostly.

  9. How much time in our lives do we spend actually performing sex, compared with everything else?

    Of course it’s a very small fragment if compared to everything else.
    But what if you compare it to anything else.
    There are numerous things I enjoy doing. But since I also have to work to earn my living and don’t have an unliited amount of time, I don’t get to enjoy them as much as I would like. That doesn’t mean that I enjoy them any less, and I can’t see no real purpose or “good” coming from giving up on them (except maybe to prove my “domestization” and being a “model citizen”…)

    Do you recommend giving up all the things we individually enjoy, and what purpose would that serve in the grand scheme of things?
    Or are you just a guy who happened lo lose his sex drive, and therefore feel a need to demonstrate a smug superiority to the rest of us?

  10. “But for crying out loud, it’s just sex.”

    you neglect, badly, one biological fact, that is inescapable and fundamental to your article. Males produce 20x more testosterone than females. Therein, wholly, lies the disparity between male and female sex drive.

    The tone of your article seems to prescribe that the female-level of this hormone should be the norm. Why do you do that?

  11. Thank you for such a thought provoking article. My partner and I use the Deliberate Orgasm Practice (also called DOing) for daily sexual pleasures. As a woman, when I take care of my sexual tumescence, I increase the level of enjoyment of my partner and our life together. We use this practice to create an orgasm in my body everyday (and DOing has tools to have it every time). From there, other sexual activities can flow easily and naturally if we both desired because there is no performance worries on either one of our part. I have already had an orgasm that is so easy to create through the Deliberate Orgasm Practice and he lets me know just about every time how much he loves to feel the orgasm he can creates so easily in my body.
    For us, it changed everything. Sex went from this experience with so many uncertainties to a deliberate daily connection. So our relationship went to a much deeper level because now with this deep sexual satisfaction, we could fully focus our energy on our daily activities and passions. Sex no longer ever is an issue, it is s deliberate experience just like eating and sleeping that makes for an enjoyable day, everyday.

  12. I completely appreciate you perspective from someone who is married but what do you say to someone like myself who is hopelessly single and can’t seem to meet anyone? I haven’t had sex in so long I can’t even calculate. I can’t seem to meet a new girlfriend or even score a one night stand. Why does it seem like everyone has made it into a relationship? What about guys like me who are just kind of here? Single and alone.

    • You’re far from alone, Raymond. There are plenty of guys in the same boat – it’s just that our voices don’t get heard much. (Perhaps because all we ever do is moan about how little sex we’re getting. Maybe we should work on that …)

      • There are fat, mediocre looking, trashy, insecure, broke, boring, nerdy, disabled women who are getting laid left and right.

        It just lights up a firecracker up many a woman’s ass when they’re told its easier for them to obtain sex. and that men are held to a higher standard of looks and every fcuking aspect. Mediocrity, inadequacy doesnt come in men alone.

        Wait, because they get slut-shamed and have a risk of pregnancyy, they will only fuck really attractive alpha males…so we are told.

        • they can get laid, but they’re no more likely to find love and happiness than an unattractive man, in fact, possible less so, because an unattractive man can still get a hot GF if he’s really smart, funny, and/or rich.

          • He’s talking about getting sex. Those women are also much more likely to ovulate and much less likely to get prostate cancer than any man. Not that either of those abilities have anything to do with them getting casual sex except… each gender’s ability to get casual sex.

    • FYI, not everyone has it made in a relationship. Certainly the author sees things one way. From the perspective of another married guy, the article is complete BS. If I was going to be not having enough sex, I’d rather not have it while single.

    • Raymond–

      I don’t know if this will help you but people aren’t naturally supposed to have monogamous relationships anyway. Humans are naturally polygamous and the idea of conventional relationships are based off of traditional political schemes but since the idea is still widely accepted as the “norm” relationship today, single people are left in the dust (even though they are doing it right, so-to-speak). Sex is very important, in the way that anything necessary for survival is important, but sometimes (because it’s taboo) it’s often misrepresented (porn and extreme sexual fetishes, for example) and sometimes sex is lumped with relationships. Sex and a relationship aren’t that far apart from each other but be careful in thinking that once you do get into a relationship that you automatically get sex. You might find out the hard way whether or not she’s been in a bad relationship, been raped/sexually assaulted, she’s a virgin/ thinks not having sex is pure, she simply didn’t get into a relationship for sex, etc. Because of the social view of relationships, single people generally feel like something in their lives is missing. But in the case for people wanting a partner, there are local dating websites. Also messaging/ friending new people in your community via Facebook. If not that, a figurative casual bump into a stranger with similar interests at a store or park isn’t that far behind. You just have to put on your armour and go do it. It will be scary. You might get let down. You might get your heart broken, but don’t stop trying. You’ll eventually find her and, who knows, she’s probably looking for you, too. Finding sexual partners, on the other hand, I have no clue, ha ha. Generally being a social person really helps to get the ball rolling, I just don’t pursue the opposite sex for sexy time, really. Sorry my advice is all over the place.

      • Janice

        how blinded you are by the female persepctive.

        Raymond is not saying that he ONLY wants to have sex within a relationship. He is also alluding to the fact that its very difficult for most to obtain casual, no strings attached sex. He would probably love to have NSA sex if he could, as long as he didnt find a relationship.

        We men dont lurve monogamy either. But most of us have realized thats the only options available to us. The vast majority of men have 1 or 2 gfs in their lives before they get married. The vast majorirt of men have to put in a lot of time and effrt pursue a single woman for a relationship in order to have a sex life. The vast majority of men dont get the opportunity to be promiscuous.

        If sex was as easily availalble to men as it is to women, We’d see how many men would be willing to marry and have serious committed monogamous relationships.

        • Um, a LOT of men would choose serious committed monogamous relationships. Like pretty much all my male friends. I’ve had my roommates straight up tell me that casual sex sucks and sex is only good if you have feelings for your partner. My female friends (I’m in college, just btw) are all WAY more interested in hooking up than my male friends. My male friends all agonize to me about how they’re jealous of my relationship and how they just want to fall in love.

          • just wait and see says:

            Maybe he should have written, we’d see how many men are willing to marry twice. I can’t imagine doing it again.

          • AF
            “my female friends (I’m in college, just btw) are all WAY more interested in hooking up than my male friends”

            Atleast it means ‘slut-shaming’ isnt holding women back anymore.

            Btw, what kind of men do your female friends require for casual sex? Colleges are brimming with young horny dudes desperate to take up any opportunity to fuck (Ive been there)

            • And do you know there are more horny virgin dudes in colleges than there are girls? So really wtf is keeping your female friends from obtaining casual sex? What dick size do they require?

          • AF

            Casual sex ‘sucks’ because its fk’n difficult to obtain for most men, to begin with. It requires the amount of time and effort that you women cannot fathom. 100 times more effort and time is required to be spent on obtaining casual sex than actually having it. The logistics of obtaining it can drain so much energy out of a man that its not worth it. Attracting women is another story.

            When the time actually comes to have it, its usually a drunken one night stand with a woman who most likely has inhibitions, is uncooperative in bed, sets too many boundaries in bed with you or is basically bitch who feels you should be honored to be given this chance.

            Women have such an upper hand in casual sex scenarios that its all on their terms – when they want, where they want, what they want. Men have a very little room to be themselves and feel at ease, as they are too preoccupied with not doing anything wrong…afterall all the fk’n conventions, rules of behavior, and do’s and don’ts in casual sex are for men. Its like walking a tightrope. Add to that all the ‘performance standards’ are for men.

            Many men who are lucky enough to score a one night stand every now and then (mind you, even thats not possible for most men), realize its just not effin worth it. They realize it would be far more feasible to ‘cultivate’ a woman sexually, build favorable terms with her in order to have sex in comfort and convenience. And having a ‘relationship’ is the only way to do so. Free from the pressures of the casual sex world which requires a man to be on his toes all the time.

            Since most men don’t have the vocabulary to articulate this ordeal, (not a surprise since society is so fkin out of touch with the male perspective on dating & sex) it usually comes out vaguely as “sex in relationships is always better than casual sex because you care for each other”

            You women on the other hand can have 30 men on your booty call list, and call a different guy every night who will come banging at your doorstep. You don’t have to move your asses from the couch. Then you can weed out the most and do repeat sessions only with the ones who are best in bed, best looking, have the biggest c**ks, best licking technique etc.

            • Wow, you sound angry. Look, I completely agree with you about casual sex generally being lousy sex. I have had not a few such experiences, and I felt totally awkward. Inhibited? Well, yeah, it is difficult to be completely un inhibited when you’ve just taken your clothes off in front of a guy you BARELY KNOW. What’s he thinking? Does he think my butt is fat? Does he think I’m a slut? Does he have an STD? That’s what goes through my mind. Boundaries? Yeah there are some things I wouldn’t do until I really got to know a guy. Like, IDK, letting him tie me up or something kinky. You know, it takes a while to build enough comfort and trust to push the envelope sexually.

              So then, well there you are drunk with someone else who is probably drunk (let’s face it, that’s the usual scenario) and you pound away for a few minutes and it’s over. And you’re thinking, “meh.”

              Honestly, even in a relationship, the first few times you have sex are a little awkward as you get to know each other and figure things out. that kind of exploration can be fun though, with someone you really like.

              I personally don’t know any woman with a booty call list.

              • Yeah, many women won’t have casual sex because it’s so unsatisfying. It’s like…being hungry and getting something that winds up making your stomach sick and not that good going down in the first place. Lots of nerves and fears, awkward with bodies, often no orgasm for women. Not much in it for us really. And then the being ignored afterwards isn’t so good.

                • Sarah & Julie

                  You’ve totally missed the point. Mens reasons for not liking casual sex are totally different from yours.

                  Men’s reasons for not liking it have mostly to do with availability, effort and the logistics of it…the lack of convinience basically. Nothing to do with the concerns you have mentioned. Your concerns say nothing about the lack of convinience.

                  As I said, if men can OBTAIN casual sex as easily as women (say, have 10 FWB’s they can call every now and then, w/o dressing up, going drinking, dancing, and chatting up women in loud deafening music etc) they would love it. Because they dont have the concerns you’ve mentioned.

                  • Hey Keith, I don’t think we missed the point at all. We get it. And you all should get that if you want women to have more casual sex (more convenience for you), you’ll make it worth the women’s while (be good at it) and not make her feel slutty afterwards (remain friends).

                    By the way, I know no single women who has 10 FWB they can call. I know maybe 2-3 single women in their 40’s that have 1 or 2 people over a year they’ve called FWB, though sometimes those people are not available to hang out. It’s not like there is a Domino’s Pizza kind of deal set up, 30 minutes fast or free. The women I know in their 20’s don’t have a passel of men in a stable, and the majority of men I know in their 20’s want girlfriends, not hook ups. Perhaps this is due to the “work” of going out as you say, and of course I’m sure you’ll say they are lying to me, but what do they have to lose by being honest with someone who is like their Aunt?

                    As someone in an open relationship, I’ve found that most of my male friends who are single look for the least amount of barriers and complications and even though they could have relatively string free encounters with me or with other poly women I know, the husband barrier gets in the way for them. So it’s not like men don’t have standards, they do.

                    I suppose if I went to a bar and waited out the night and then just said, “anyone want a go” I might get a taker, but why would I do that?

                    We get your point, Keith. We just have a different one.

                    • @Julie Gillis.

                      “Not much in it for us really. And then the being ignored afterwards isn’t so good.”

                      There are several women who regularly post on GMP (I shall spare the indignity of naming them) about how they do NOT want the guy to call after a casual hookup. Especially, Mr. Nice (who isn’t going to get the easy sex anyway).

                      So, if women are hooking up more with the bad boys and such men are NOT calling you (women), your line of argument is simply without merit.

                      After all, do you really want Mr. Bad Boy to call you?

                    • I don’t much like “bad” men, that’s not my thing. What I’d like would be for conversation and ease if we are in the same social space, respect and a reasonable facsimile of acquaintanship after the fact as before. If I’m gonna sleep with someone casually, it doesn’t mean I want to be treated casually. Treat me kindly and view me like a person before and after.

                • Not much in it for us really. And then the being ignored afterwards isn’t so good.

                  I can assure you that men are a lot more friendly, courteous to their casual sex partners than women.

              • @Sarah….

                “I personally don’t know any woman with a booty call list.”

                But, most sexually active women do have a “reserve” of men they can call to take care of their needs.

                • I am a sexually active woman who has never been married, who has spent my adult life dating and in and out of relationships (both serious and short term) and I have never had such a list. I have many female friends, and we talk about our relationships and sex lives. None of them have a list.

                  • Sarah

                    Please dont get offended but I dont know what to make of this. In other places, you’ve mentioned that youre below average in looks, are chubby, insecure of your body, not fashionable etc; and then you go on to say youre a sexually active woman WITHOUT being married and spent your life dating and having short/long term relationships.

                    I can only say that the amount of sexual expereince and the no of partners youve presumably had would be a source of envy to most men.

                    I also cant help but imagine a man in your shoes, who admits to having the same inadeqieces as you have admitted, would probably die a virgin or would be paying sex workers if he doesnt get married.

                    You know the first thing they tell a guy who bemoans his failure at sexually attracting women? Hit the gym, develop a sense of fashion, groom yourself, develop confidence, personality ,humor, be risk taking, be outgoing etc; just so he can begin TRYING to attract women.

                    And if he doesnt do all that, he cannot even rightfully complain. and doing that is still no gaurantee he will have any success.

                    • @Keith……

                      Women like to pretend. Seriously.

                    • Keith,

                      the assumption in most of your posts in this thread seems to be that most (young) men cannot find sex partners or at least find it overwhelmingly hard to do so. Now, it’s been many years now since I was as a young man “in the market”, but even in the 80s what you describe is pretty far from the reality I experienced – and I see no signs that it has changed for the worse.

                      You seem to believe that most women can just say “hi, I’d like an attractive sex partners for the night” and something will materialize by magic. That’s not the case, or at least not for any ordinary women I know of. Finding a partners – especially a good one – takes some effort. For men and women alike.

    • Thats why sex work should be legalized and normalized.

      Most men dont have the looks and charm to attract common females for casual sex relationships. It is a an unmistakable and obvious fact that women are sexually attracted to fewer men.

  13. wellokaythen says:

    You can’t have it both ways. You can’t say that sex is meaningless AND demand sexual exclusiveness. Either sex is a significant part of a relationship or it isn’t. If sex really is trivial, then it shouldn’t matter who you have sex with. Obviously it has some meaning, because people divorce over sexual infidelity. If you say “sex is just sex” when it’s with your spouse, then it’s “just sex” with anyone. Otherwise, it’s trivial when it’s with your committed partner but gigantic when it’s with someone else, so how does THAT work?

    It’s a lot easier to accept the ideas in this article if the reader is getting all the sex he wants or if the reader is the lower-libido partner. It reads a lot differently, even obnoxiously, if the reader is sexually frustrated or the higher-libido partner. Then it sounds like, “I’m getting everything I want, so you should be satisfied, too.”

  14. Nick, mostly says:

    There is a glaring hypocrisy with the way many couples treat sex, and it is thus: “I don’t want to have sex with you, and no one else can either.”

    Sex can not be simultaneously so important to a marriage that to go outside of the relationship for sex is the highest violation of the bond, yet so unimportant that you can’t be bothered to help meet your partner’s sexual needs. That’s not to say I’m in favor of cheating, but rather that for some people sex in a relationship is important, and those people should find someone with whom they are sexually compatible – both in desire and attitude. If sex is not important to you that’s fine; hopefully you have a partner for whom it’s also unimportant.

    This article means well, but it assumes an attitude towards sex in a relationship that is not shared by all, and presents that attitude rather smugly. Not to mention the whole premise of the essay rests on a fallacy of thinking about sex simply as filling time. You know, I only spend about 2% of my time eating, if it could be “cleanly extracted from my life leaving everything else intact” I’d go mad with hunger before eventually dying from starvation.

    • wellokaythen says:

      I agree. Why does the duration really matter? The pursuit of a fraction of a second of ecstasy may be worth it, regardless of the duration of the feeling. (Up to a certain point.) I sympathize with the author in part, but I’m ready to take up a beancounter view of sex, inputs, outputs, time motion studies, efficiency, etc.

    • I totally agree. Sex isn’t a big deal when your sex life going well, but (as you pointed out), just like hunger, or thirst, or sleep, or any other necessary thing, when you don’t have it it takes over your thoughts and life. And I don’t think that’s unreasonable. Add in the fact that being rejected over and over can make you feel worthless and like your partner doesn’t love you anymore and doesn’t care about your needs, well then sex is definitely not “just sex.”

      • I agree with you wholly. This article is a decent start, but by far a long way from the full picture for most reasonable men. Sigh.

    • Although I would normally pass by the comments section of a well written article and keep my opinions to myself, I feel there may be those who read this and feel they are different. And that in this case different means wrong. I do not believe that to be true.
      In my argument there are two points I would like to raise. They are simple.
      One. Intimacy is indeed more than the act of penetration. Yet, many factors in the chemistry of a relationship affect intimacy. DESIRE to BE intimate with a present partner may evolve into a desire to NOT be intimate with said partner. Does this mean that the partners must now commit to a relationship where they battle the conundrum or simply accept it for what it is and open a dialogue? Sex is not always intimate and intimacy is not always sex, but DESIRE is required for both.
      Two. Filling ones cup completely with another persons worth at the risk of leaving ones own worth behind is a very good way to drown in said cup. Drowning in a relationship is quite real. The weight of fulfilling the expectations of a partner you feel little desire for can take you places you never thought you would go. Resentment of a person you still love dearly, but feel no DESIRE to be intimate with for instance. Or how about replacing desire with what I like to call the “more right” game? For those of you reading this who have played this game, you know exactly what I mean.
      So, while I agree with the notion that intimacy is not ONLY sex. Desire is quite possibly the hydrogen equivalent of the periodic table of relationship elements. It is the most abundant element in the intimacy universe. Trust would come a close second. Maybe we’ll replace oxygen in our comparison with trust. We can go farther by saying in bonding the two, instead of water, the giver of life, you would have love, the giver of life in a relationship. Here….for the scientists out there I’ll write out a new elemental bond equation. DE + TR = <3
      Fill your cup with your own water. Own that water. BE your embodiment of desire, however it evolves, allow yourself the love for you that you deserve to always pursue that which you desire and manifest it through open discussion and acceptance and love. The manifestation of love starts with a thought, like everything in a human based reality. But without word and then action, those thoughts never get to see the light of day. And wouldn't that be a shame? To lose love because you cannot be allowed to desire.
      That's all. Thank you for reading. Now go and love yourself first and allow others the same courtesy. My money is on you finding joy (and damned good sex) if you choose to do to that.

    • EXCELLENT point! If sex is supposed to be ‘no big deal,’ then going outside the marriage to get it shouldn’t be grounds for breakup, divorce, and cries of betrayal.

      The truth is, sex IS important… but a lot of marrieds like to pretend otherwise because of other issues they have with their relationship.

      “How much time in our lives do we spend actually performing sex, compared with everything else?”

      Answer: Not nearly enough–that’s the problem.

  15. Thanks for your article, Dork. I know people whose health has interfered with their ability to be sexually intimate. They have strong, steady marriages, even as the healthy and virile couples in friendship circles find themselves getting divorced. I also know men who, following the birth of their children, simply couldn’t deal with the sudden shift of their wives’ attention towards the kids, and the immediate impact on their sex life. They strayed away to ruin the marriage. While I don’t know such women, I’ve read stories here on the Good Men Project about painful sexual warfare. It would do us well to rethink our expectations, to be mindful of our sexual feelings and, as you suggest, to put them in greater perspective.

    • wellokaythen says:

      Isn’t asking a cheating spouse for divorce another form of being “unable to deal with changes in the sex life”? Taking on another partner is a change in a couple’s sex life, so why is that change unacceptable but other changes have to be acceptable, but sex is unimportant? As I’ve said elsewhere, a partner can’t have it both ways — sex can’t be totally expendable AND a massive betrayal. Unless one person is defined as the slave of the other’s sex drive (or lack thereof).

      • “Isn’t asking a cheating spouse for divorce another form of being “unable to deal with changes in the sex life”?”

        You are assuming that someone needs to cheat. No one needs to cheat. If someone is unappy in their marriage because of X, they simply need to inform their partner and THEN pursue another relationship.

        • Nick, mostly says:

          I think he was posing this as a rhetorical question.

        • Are you assuming that anyone “needs” to do anything? A person can simply stop breathing. eating, drinking, etc. and accept the consequences.

          If someone thinks they have a simple solution to a very common problem, they can pat themselves on the back, happily apply it to their own life and be little less self-righteous.

      • veryinteresting says:

        The problem with seeing breaking up due to cheating as someone being “unable to deal with changes in the sex life” is that typically a person who broke up with their cheating S.O. didn’t break up with them because of the actual change in sex life. They broke up because they had agreed to be in a mutually exclusive relationship, and placed their trust in their partner that they would continue to hold them as the one person that they shared every kind of intimacy with. When their S.O. cheated, it wasn’t just the act of sex itself that was so violating, it was the destruction of all the trust that they placed with each other.

        • wellokaythen says:

          Good, now we’re getting somewhere. I understand about the feeling of betrayed trust. But, it’s the betrayal of a promise not to do something that’s called trivial in this article, so how bad of a betrayal can it be? If it’s a massive betrayal to do have sex, then sex IS a big deal. My point is that it’s completely asymmetrical to say that sex with one person is really not very important while sex with someone else is the most gigantic thing in the world.

          I can see how it sounds like I’m trying to justify cheating. That’s not my intention. My intention is to show that it’s unfair to treat a partner’s sexuality like it’s trivial or really important whenever it suits you.

          Cheating is an extreme example, I admit. Let’s try a monogamous example. Imagine a husband who’s a very inconsiderate lover. He seems oblivious to his wife’s pleasure, pays no attention to whether she has an orgasm or not. When she raises this issue, he points her to this article, pointing out that people make way too big a deal out of sex. It’s a really trivial part of life, just for making babies anyway.

          Does anyone here think said husband should be able to get away with that? Personally, I’d say it’s an asshole move on his part. So, I’m thinking it would be an asshole move to tell a dissatisfied *husband* the same thing….

          • I think there’s a difference between a partner who is selfish and unwilling to give pleasure to their partner yet is willing to take it from them, and a partner who wants to give pleasure to their partner but has a lower sex drive or is too busy and tired to give very often.

            • I think that still follows the example or sex being both trivial and important. I assume the tired partner still think sex is important enough to want orgasms and to expect sexual fidelity.

              But to say that the partner has a lower sex drive or is too busy or too tired…. So you’ve got a lower sex drive. There are ways to stimulate it. Does the other partner pursue them? Perhaps no, because it’s just sex.

              The partner is too tired or too busy… in the short term, certainly things come up. But people, myself included, who seem most upset about these things, cite a consistent pattern of behavior. A consistent deprioritizing of sex. I’m too busy for sex and won’t set time aside because…. I’m too tired for years on end because….

              A partner who is content to have a lower sex drive, how is always too busy, always too tired is also selfish and unwilling and ungenerous.

              But hey, it’s just sex. TVs on tonight.

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