Saturday, August 8, 2009

False dichotomy?

They say that the endorphines and hormones released during sex can create intense feelings of love. Is the reverse also possible? If sex can create love, then can love also create sex?

I took my pledge of sexlessness over ten months ago now, and here I am 10 months in and going strong.

In the first few months, it was all I could do to hold my libido back: to bite my tongue, cross my legs, take cold showers.

But then it got easy, at least most of the time, and life returned to normal. I was happier in a lot of ways, because I wasn't being constantly rejected when making amorous overatures to my wife. (And, yes, of course it was ALWAYS me making the overatures.) Life has improved since the whole complicated "sex thing" has been taken out of the equation.

So, somewhere along the line, after getting over the idea that sex was a normal part of my life, I began to change the focus of this blog, from coping with unrequited lust to trying to improve our relationship.

Deep down, I guess I thought that if we were madly, truly, deeply in love (or as madly, truly, deeply in love as a couple can reasonably be after ten years of smelling each others morning breath, hearing each others bathroom noises, and being witness to other similar sins of familiarity that cohabitation inevitably produces), then the sex would inevitably follow.

Somehow, on some level, my task has shifted from "coping with sexlessness" to "trying to make the relationship thrive again."

A thriving relationship is, of course, good for all kinds of reasons, no t the least of which is to be able to cope with sexlessness.

I think a relationship can be successful without sex in much the same way that a meal can be excellent without any salt or sugar used in the cooking. That is, sure, it can happen; it just takes a damn site more planning and effort. A bit of creativity, determination, and gustatory good humour.

But the best meal in the world without salt and sugar will not, of itself, make the salt (or sugar) spontaneously rematerialize on the table.

And so I am coming to see that creating the best relationship in the world without sex will not, of itself, bring the sex back.

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