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Sex

Is Male Sexuality Simple?

An empathic, respectful approach to the complexity of male sexuality.

Key points

  • There are many more similarities than differences between men and women, especially married and partnered couples.
  • Male sexuality is complex and multi-dimensional, rather than the simple demand for perfect performance.
  • Both men and women learn to value intimacy, pleasuring, and eroticism.

In our culture and most cultures throughout the world, male sexuality is either put on a pedestal or demonized. The mistaken belief is that testosterone, spontaneous erections, and totally predictable sex response demonstrate that male sexuality is strong and perfect or much superior to female sexuality. The assumption is that men are better than women and few women can keep up sexually. The opposite extreme is to demonize men and masculinity. The message is that an erect penis has no conscience and that a real man is willing and able to have sex with any woman, at any time, and in any situation. Sexual abuse, rape, and mistreating women reflect toxic male sexuality.

Scientifically and clinically, there are many more similarities than differences between adult men and women. The mantra for couple sexuality is both partners value intimacy, pleasuring, and eroticism. This is especially true for married and partnered couples.

Rather than reinforcing extreme, alienating concepts, an empathic, respectful approach empowers men and couples. Sexuality is a team sport, not an individual performance. You are intimate and erotic allies. The traditional split where men value eroticism and women value intimacy must be confronted and changed. Rather than “giving up sexual power,” you are making a wise decision to value your partner and be an intimate sexual couple. You share intimacy, pleasure, and eroticism. The major aphrodisiac is an involved, aroused partner who has her “sexual voice.” She is actively involved in giving and receiving pleasure-oriented touching rather than being passive in foreplay. She is an equitable sexual partner rather than depending on you to “get her aroused” or “give her an orgasm.”

You accept her sexual voice, are open to giving and receiving pleasure-oriented touching, actively engage in the arousal and eroticism process, transition to intercourse when both partners are experiencing erotic flow, and enjoy multiple stimulations before and during intercourse. This process of sharing intimacy, pleasuring, and eroticism is much superior to the traditional scenario of you being dominant, in charge, and responsible for her sexual response.

Our newest book, Contemporary Male Sexuality , advocates for the female-male sexual equity model and confronts the traditional male-female double standard. In addition, we advocate for the Good Enough Sex (GES) model and dropping the male perfect sex performance model. Male and couple sexuality is an interpersonal process of sharing desire, pleasure, eroticism, and satisfaction. GES recognizes that male and couple sexuality can have a number of roles, meanings, and outcomes rather than sex as a simple pass-fail test. The old belief that male sexuality is simple while female sexuality is hidden and complex is replaced by the scientifically and clinically empowering acceptance of the complexity of male, female, and couple sexuality. Positive, realistic expectations motivate you to accept your sexuality rather than feeling controlled and oppressed by the individual perfect performance model. Be sexually self-accepting rather than intimidated by unrealistic performance demands where you are always one experience from feeling you are a sexual failure. This new model of sexuality allows you to enjoy intimacy, pleasuring, and eroticism throughout your life, including in your 60s, 70s, and 80s.

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