“All Men Want Is Sex!” But, Is That True?

Yes, I’m starting out with a gender stereotype, because it’s one I’ve heard over and over and over again.

And it’s not true. At least not for everyone, or maybe even a majority.

In the past week, the topic of men who need so much more than sex has hit me over the head. My Pet is stressed—life has kicked him in the balls. Some friends are fighting for their relationship. A man has come to me seeking advice on connecting. And more.

Monday, I was recovering from travel and didn’t write. Today, I looked over the topic I had for that day, and I saw:

What Men Are Missing More Than Sex: https://upliftconnect.com/how-lack-touch-destroying…

Then, I clicked on today’s topic, and I saw:

Men Want More Than Sex: https://goodmenproject.com/sex-relationships/the-on…

Ok, ok, universe. I get the hint. It’s time to talk about this.

This week, there have been two things I’ve stressed over and over in my conversations about this:

  • Touch
  • Acceptance

Not coincidentally, exactly what these two articles suggest that men need and want even “more than sex.”

So, if those are what men REALLY want and need, why the stereotype about sex?

Well, one article says:

From the time I was a young I learned that wanting sex was synonymous with being a man. In high school I remember overhearing a girl I liked talking about a guy we both knew. She wasn’t complaining that he was preoccupied with sex, but that he “didn’t come on to me like other guys do.” She went on to tell her girlfriend, “He’s not being very manly.” The message was clear, “real men” want sex and if you don’t “come on” to a girl, you’re not a real man.

This early lesson was validated through the years: Always wanting sex is the mark of manliness for many. It’s better to be turned down again and again and be seen as a jerk who is totally preoccupied with sex than to want something more than sex and be seen as “less than a man.”

And the other says:

In preparing to write about the lack of gentle touch in men’s lives, I right away thought, “I feel confident I can do platonic touch, but I don’t necessarily trust other men to do it. Some guy will do something creepy. They always do”. Quickly on the heels of that thought, I wondered, “Wait a minute, why do I distrust men in particular?” The little voice in my head didn’t say, “I don’t necessarily trust people to not be creepy”, it said, “I don’t trust men”.

In American culture, we believe that men can never be entirely trusted in the realm of the physical. We collectively suspect that, given the opportunity, men will revert to the sexual at a moment’s notice. That men don’t know how to physically connect otherwise. That men can’t control themselves. That men are dogs.

There is no corresponding narrative about women.

So, we create men by raising them with this stereotype and others about suppressing emotions, male-male touching is “TEH GHEY”, and what being strong means, while simultaneously discouraging the skills of compassion, communication, and… non-sexual touch (yes, it’s a skill that can be learned) in boys, while lauding it in women.

So, where does this leave us?

With men who are literally touch-starved (other genders, too—sure, I’m not leaving anyone out, here).

With men who feel like they will never be accepted, because they don’t how to take the steps to build acceptance (also applies to other genders).

With men who come on too strong, too macho, and get rejected, exacerbating both issues (other genders experience this, of course)…

You see the vicious cycle, yes?

So, what can we do about it?

Well, first of all, let me say that when I give ideas on what WE can do about it, I am not setting commandments or prescribing anything to anyone who has no interest.

You don’t wanna participate, that’s fine. No one HAS to do anything.

If you are concerned, and you WANT to do something, well, here are my thoughts (and I’d love to hear yours):

MEN

Frankly, this is on you. No matter what else I say, this is your responsibility to fix for you. No one else is responsible for you getting your needs met, no matter what role you identify as, or how fucked up your childhood is.

And I’m sorry that this has happened.

However, you’re not a special snowflake. All us other genders have our own issues. This one just happens to be yours.

That said, here’s what you can do:

  • Join dialogs about this topic.
  • Read more and LEARN how to be more trustworthy in presenting yourself and your energy.
  • LISTEN to other genders when they explain what your gender often does that destroys our trust in you.
  • Be more vulnerable, less defensive.
  • Understand that being strong has nothing to do with bravado, power or being mean.
  • Stop reaching for tits (yes, we heard you say it’s a joke, no we still won’t make that mistake again, gross) when we go in for a hug, or any of those other inappropriate sexualizing (without consent) behaviors.
  • Raise your children with LOTS of platonic touch and TONS of acceptance, treat other’s kids the same way, as appropriate, to serve the next generation.

OTHER GENDERS

Again, I state: This is NOT your job. I’m not putting this on you. This is for you, if you want to help (it will probably be thankless), or you’re in a relationship with a man who suffers this way:

  • Speak up when something is not right. How will they know, if you don’t say?
  • Offer to help the good-hearted-but-clueless blokes in your life.
  • Give affection and acceptance as often and as much as possible.
  • Maintain your boundaries at all times, especially when doing that.
  • Just try to understand. Sometimes, that’s all it takes.
  • Raise your children with LOTS of platonic touch and TONS of acceptance, treat other’s kids the same way, as appropriate, to serve the next generation.

I love the men in my life, and I know MANY of them have suffered from this, and some still do.

They are not bad men. In fact, they are some of the most amazing men I know.

Maybe some of the most amazing men you know, and you don’t know this is their deep well of pain, because they can’t figure out how to say it, or are afraid.

So, what are your thoughts?

What are the causes/root problems? What can we do to prevent this? What can we do to reverse this? Do you even care (no is a valid answer)?

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