Why Do You Want to Make Love?By Dr. Margaret Paul
December 31, 2006
If sex is a problem in your relationship, the problem may lie with your intent. Discover your intent behind wanting to have sex.
When you want to make love, why do you want to? The answer may seem obvious, but there are many reasons for wanting to have sex. Following are some of these reasons:
Feeling insecure and wanting to feel loved or validated through sex
Hoping that by having sex the other person will like you or love you - having sex as a form of control over the other person's feelings for you
Feeling sexual desire and wanting another person to take care of it for you
Hoping that having sex will release stress
Hoping that having sex will put you to sleep
To have a sense of power and control over someone
To avoid facing feelings of loneliness and aloneness, or other painful feelings
To get held and get the affection that you want
- Feeling filled with love and wanting to express it physically to the person you love
Other than the last reason, all the others are from the ego wounded self.
The wounded self in many people has learned to use sex addictively - to get love, avoid pain, and feel safe.
This can create many problems in relationships and in society in general. A person acting from his or her wounded self who wants power and control may sexually abuse both children and adults. A person in a relationship operating from the wounded self, who has learned to use sex as a form of validation may be sexually demanding to the point that his or her partner feels used, controlled and invaded. The partner at the other end of an insecure and sexually demanding partner often finds himself or herself completely turned off sexually in the relationship.
I have often worked with women who have sex with a man, not because she feels great desire, but in the hopes of getting him to love her and stay in the relationship. Invariably, this backfires and she ends up feeling betrayed. Yet she has betrayed herself by using sex as a form of control.
Many people in relationships believe that the other person is responsible for his or her feelings, including taking care of sexual feelings. If you believe that it is your partner's "duty" to take care of your sexual needs, this can create a problem in relationships. Sex that comes from duty rather than love is not satisfying. When one partner complies and performs his or her "duty", the relationship may gradually erode to the point of falling apart. No one likes to feel used, especially sexually, so it is never advisable to have sex out of duty or to expect your partner to have sex out of duty.
Some people have a deep need to be held, a need for mothering.
Sometimes people sexualize this need and have sex in an effort to meet this need. This never works, as the inner child needs mothering, NOT sex. In fact, the inner child may feel violated when the wounded self uses sex to get affection.
Sex may temporarily take away feelings of stress, anxiety, loneliness, and aloneness, but it is very temporary. Just as the inner child will not feel loved if you used food, drugs or alcohol to avoid responsibility for your feelings, neither will your inner child feel loved when you use sex addictively.
Healthy sexually comes from love and intimacy between two people. People who love each other do not want the other person to have sex when it is not what he or she wants to do. People who are taking responsibility for their own feelings have sex for the joy and pleasure of expressing their love for each other.
Heal your relationship with Dr. Margaret’s 30-Day online relationship course: Wildly, Deeply, Joyously in Love.
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The paradox of our wounded self is that it wants to feel safe so it tries in so many ways to control that which it cannot control, which leads to feeling anxious and unsafe. Surrendering to what is and opening to spiritual guidance creates the peace that will never come from trying to control.
By Dr. Margaret Paul