And I’ve got some awkward thoughts.
Photo by Giorgio Encinas on Unsplash
When I say that I haven?t had sex for a year, I feel the need to clarify that I?m talking about sex with another person, because come on, sex is sex. Solo sex and orgasm are still sex. Our bodies tend to respond whether there?s somebody else in the room or not.
But anytime somebody talks about a ?dry spell,? let?s be honest. We know that they are talking about sex with somebody else. As if sex with ourselves isn?t? anything.
You know what? Over the past year or so, I?ve had a lot of solo sex, and I like that. There was a time when I felt too guilty to orgasm because I?d been taught from a young age that sex was wrong. And what was even worsethan regularoldsex? Sex with yourself.
I grew up being told that masturbation was something only utterly depraved folks with huge sexual hangups did. That solo sex was practically on par with abuse. As if touching yourself indicates that you also like to do [other] terrible things.
Sex as self-care.
Over the years, I have come to look at sex as an important part of self-care for myself. As a frequently co-sleeping single mom, it isn?t often accessible, but it?s something I make sure to do whenever my daughter is away.
When my daughter spends a couple of nights at her dad?s, I also frequently catch up on ?my shows.? The television I miss because it?s not aimed for little ones. Even if I?m simply streaming The Marvelous Miss Maisel while I work on my writing, it?s a form of self-care in my life.
And I look at sex the same way. Something for me. I sleep better after an orgasm. Plus, I feel good now that I no longer berate myself for having sexual desire.
But sex with another person is different.
I know. Even though the physiological response to a solo sex orgasm is the same as a partnered one, it?s different. Solo sex is about accepting love for ourselves. Sex with somebody else is about accepting each other.
It?s connection, whether we like to say so or not.
And I know some people shy away from assuming all sex between more than one person is connection, but I think it?s always a drive for connection of some kind.
Even if we?re talking about casual sex or a one night stand. Everybody is looking for connection in one way or another.
Sex after a dry spell is kinda nerve-wracking.
Except for solo sex, of course. Isn?t it funny? We don?t work ourselves up into a panic when we haven?t masturbated for a long time.
None of us are worrying about our solo performance, either.
?Oh, God, I really hope I can get myself off because that would be so embarrassing ifIdidn?t,? said no one ever.
Solo sex is freeing. We don?t worry about being gross or weird alone with ourselves. But somebody else? That?s a whole other story.
Getting back into the swing of things is tough.
I anticipate having sex in less than a couple of weeks and I?m trying not to psych myself out with my anxious thoughts. But let?s be realistic–some freaking out is normal.
I?m lucky, because I?ve had sex with this man before, but nothing–and I mean, nothing–erases the fact that it?s been an entire year since we saw each other naked.
It?s weird, right? I mean, it?s always kind of weird to start having sex again, isn?t it? Even if we?ve been having it with ourselves the whole damn time.
I have a lot of thoughts,and Iwonderhowmanyofthemaregendered.
Thoughts like, where do I stand on shaving right now? Do I need to buy new underwear? I?m contemplating what clothes and personal hygiene products to pack, and also wondering if I?d care less if I were a man.
I?m not on birth control anymore, so I have to think about condoms. Do I remind him that I can?t use latex? No. If I buy my owncondoms, I don?t even have to worry about it. Ugh, but my mother lives with me at the moment, so I do need to consider how to ensure she doesn?t see that purchase.
Plus, I have weird thoughts about performance. Like, what if I don?t remember where everything goes? (Don?t pretend that directing a penis into a nervous vagina isn?t awkward AF.)
Will I be too apprehensive? I have a history of vaginismus and don?t want to seize upand makeitpainful. Not to mention impossible.
Are my large lipedema legs going to get in the way or make certain positions uncomfortable?
Should I go for an orgasm? Reaching climax is already a challenge for me. Do I even bother, or should I simply not think about it?
And what will I even feel like doing in the moment? There are a whole lot of different kinds of sex, just saying.
Some of my thoughts are more like fears and accusations.
Ugh, I?m still fat. And even though he doesn?t judge my fatness, I judge it myself. I feel ugly, but he never makes me feel anything less than beautiful, so why does it still bother me?
Honestly, I worry about everything. Getting my period unexpectedly, because for all of his acceptance he is squeamish about blood. And I worry about my body somehow embarrassing me.
Keto breath? oh, bloody hell. I have keto breath. Do I? apologize for that? Chew insane amounts of gum beforehand? Pretend it?s not really happening? Leave it to me to worry about something like keto breath and then go on a cake binge just to ?fix theproblem.?
I feel gross. PCOS and lipedema contribute to negative thoughts about my body. Like my size and fact that I grow hair where it doesn?t belong.
I feel awkward. People like to say that confidence is the most important thing in bed. Oh, great. Does that mean I am going to be terrible?
So I?m trying to remind myself to? breathe.
Well, I might as well face it. I haven?t had sex with anyone else in a year, and I am going to have some reservations about that.
At least I?m not alone. A lot of people seem to have similar fears about restarting their own sex lives. And I?m lucky to be contemplating my next rendezvous with someone who really cares about and accepts me.
Maybe that?s the whole thing that scares so many of us about coming back from a dry spell, anyway. We just want to know that we?re going to be accepted. Fully accepted.
Naked selves and all.
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