This post was written in response to a blog post that was featured in our End Point last week. Comments please! Because lets face it, no one really knows what they are doing when it comes to relationships.
Thanks sis! I think you’re right. It is possible to have a short, exciting, respectful, pleasurable, and enjoyable sexual experience without being manipulative. But, the thought I had while reading your letter was that you seem to have spent a lot of time talking about what I, as a male, but have spent little time addressing how to improve our actions. Yes, being open and honest about your intentions is the right thing to do and it improves any and every relationship you have, but it’s not always so simple.
In fact, the situation of “getting laid” is probably one of the easiest situations to handle. I meet a random girl and state my intentions, bluntly, but in a way that is not manipulative and respectful of her desires. She conveys similar intentions and you get it on: very efficient mating sequence. But this oversimplification ignores all the other variables that come your way, one of which being that people formulate their opinions based on your actions, rather than asking you about your intentions. Even so, this gray area is broadened by the fact that people don’t always say what they mean.
Being honest about your intentions is great, but that does not mean it is good to be blunt. At a party, if I were to tell every girl who I wasn’t interested in having sexual relations with just that, I would be pissing a lot of people off. Flirting solves this problem. But then where is that line? This is where you get a few different answers. What constitutes leading someone on can mean different things to everyone. I, for example, am a touchy person. I do not shy away from physical contact and dish it out, but casual jester for me can mean a lot more to someone else.
The issue becomes more convoluted because it is based off the assumption that people say what they mean. From my prior example, say a girl comes up to me and says she wants to have sex with me, just tonight and then leave it at that. Little does she know I have been crushing on her hard for a couple of weeks. I say yes because I am in love with this girl, but convince myself I am okay with a one night stand. However, now we are operating under different assumptions.
So what does this boil down to? Two things: One, a book may have a red romantic cover, but be a war-time drama underneath. It’s the words inside that matter just as it is a person’s words that matter, especially when actions can be construed in so many ways. The second, it’s a two way street. You can be as honest and forthcoming as you want, but if you can’t expect the same from the person you are communicating with then all that good will is undermined. You must determine whether the person you are with believes what they are saying. It’s this deeper level of honesty that takes a little more work to get to, but is the real key to a successful relationship, one night stand or marriage.
(Photo by Koshiro.kun under a Creative Commons license)