For some people sex is wrapped up with their ideas of love and marriage. Sex means: I love you, I want to marry you and get a dog a mortgage and a goldfish and live happily ever after… For other people it is what you do for fun on a Friday night with someone you just met. There is nothing inherently wrong with either of these attitudes as long as you are both honest about your intentions and are having sex for the right reasons (for you).
In fact I am often told that we should only talk about sex in terms of love and committed relationships with young people – like this will magically make sex safe – this is nonsense and simply not true. Just because you love someone, doesn’t make sex safe – it won’t stop things going wrong. Indeed, often we will forgive and put up with a lot of bad behaviour from our partners in the name of love.
Just because someone tells you that they love you, does not mean that they will treat you well or not take advantage of you. Don’t believe me? Check out the pages about relationship abuse and sexual exploitation…
In relationships we often have sex because there is an expectation that we should, rather than we necessarily want to. Indeed, sex is often used as a bit of a bargaining tool in a relationship to get what we want or to keep our partners happy. Sometimes we have sex, because it is easier than saying no… and that is never a good thing.
© Going off the Rails 2014. Adapted from ‘Playing Downstairs’ by Jonny Hunt