By Denise J. Charles
When a guy that I know posed this idea some time back to a group of us (woman in head differing from woman in bed) , I thought it particularly uncanny. As a man and a husband, he actually admitted that this was a specific problem for several men. It broached a little discussion about one of the anomalies of relationships. Very often we develop an ideal about the person we want to spend the rest of our lives with and very often our real-life partner never even begins to make the grade. We girls often have this fairy-tale expectations of the tall, dashing Prince who will sweep us off our feet, support our independence, hand over the money (never mind we earn our own) be a tiger in the bedroom, meet all of our emotional needs, be a great kisser, listener, gourmet Chef and several other things all rolled into one.
By the same token, a guy wants the girl who is low-maintenance but sexy to the nines, educated, confident, nurturing (as in great mother material) , uninhibited in bed but wholesome enough to meet his mother, not needy or clingy or a nag and don’t forget with loads of fragrant hair ( many of the females I know actually will not significantly shorten their hair because of this perception that guys love long hair, hmmm). That being said, the truth is that this conflict between reality and the ideal, is a problem for both sexes.
We often have an idealistic expectation of our future partner which may have its genesis somewhere in our childhood. Maybe if we had a good relationship with our Mom or Dad, we expect our partner to be just like them. The opposite is also true; a horrible father will make many a girl long for a guy who is the exact opposite. In the relationship department, we could also be suffering from “first-love-syndrome”: a condition where we compare every relationship to our first. But this article will not focus on us girls this time around. What happens when our guy has a woman fixed in his head who bears little resemblance to who we really are? Can a guy be cured of this problem and can a relationship survive? More importantly what happens when the woman in head versus woman in bed problem hits home in the bedroom?
If I had to ask all the men I know if they were really sexually happy or fulfilled with their intimate relationships I don’t know how many of them would be honest. Even if they were candid enough to admit being unhappy I am not sure that they would connect this unhappiness to their own unrealistic expectations. The truth is that continuing to live with an “ideal” in the head, can lead to all sorts of complications in the figurative and literal bed of a relationship.When this idea of the ideal partner is extended to the sex life then it begins to take on a whole new dynamic.
Let’s face it girls, where guys are concerned, sex is right up there with breathing and oxygen. Somehow their testosterone has not only convinced them that they can’t live without sex but they usually believe that they need lots of it and in great variety! What happens then to a guy’s sexual psyche when he makes a decision to keep all of his sexual eggs in one basket as it were. I’ll tell you what. He develops a long list of expectations which he believes must be fulfilled in order that he might be truly sexually happy. After all, as far as he is concerned, since he’s giving up his philandering ways (or at least purporting to) he might as well benefit in the process.
While his personality or the nature of his relationship may preclude him sharing some of these expectations with his spouse, they are likely to remain deeply embedded in his heart because he sees them as an essential part of his sexual entitlement.
Some of the primary expectations of males include:
• an on-par sex drive or at least a willingness to provide sex on demand
• sexual confidence and freedom from inhibition
• a willingness to initiate sex and try new things
• an ability to forgive and forget his sexual indiscretions (as in his cheating if he does)
• a willingness to praise his sexual prowess while assuring him that he’s really packing it
• a sexy body capable of basic gymnastic contortions
• fearlessness when it comes to talking sexy
These are not exhaustive by any means and may vary depending on the personality, religious persuasion, experience or socialization of the male. At any rate, I think we can safely say that many men have a wonderful “sex ideal” somewhat like this in their heads. The sad thing is that a man when sexually unfulfilled, can, through fantasy, substitute his spouse for an unrealistic ideal and the unsuspecting wife may not have a clue! So what’s a woman to do? While there is absolutely nothing wrong with trying to please one’s partner sexually, a relationship is about growth and development in all areas, including the bedroom. It can also become a little sticky when one member of the couple -mainly the male- is setting all the rules.
It is however not only important for a couple to grow together sexually but there must be a delicate balance between compromising to please and being allowed to be one’s self. No man should force us to swing from the chandeliers in some Tarzan suit if we’re afraid of heights, simply because he likes jungle themes. At the same time as women, we can learn to preserve an element of surprise in the relationship by initiating something out of the ordinary.
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