Creating and maintaining the erotic, deep, sensual excitement in a relationship gets in the way of creating the safety and security that the relationship also needs. To maintain that seductive element in the relationship it is important not to allow for the fusion of both partners. When two members of this interconnection lose themselves in this bond they can no longer feel the passionate energy they need to desire each other.
What is eroticism?
The erotic is a way of accessing that wild primal side of ourselves that can get lost in the safety and security we often feel in our modern world today. In the moment the erotic is felt there is a desire that bubbles up in your body that pushes you to move towards your partner. It is the feeling that you have that drives us towards being sexual. It is the turn on in our bodies. Without this feeling we can lose our deeper drive towards one another and end up like roommates.
The erotic can feel quite vulnerable. This is why it often is not completely expressed. How do you tell your partner that you want to have sex? Do you say something? Do you do something? If this causes a little bit of uncertainty that is what I’m talking about. That feeling that I don’t want to create discomfort in our relationship by letting my partner know I’m feeling horny.
Why do we need to be separate to be erotically connected?
Separateness in relationships is essential for our ability to feel connection. If we are completely bound together, who do we connect with? There is nobody to bind ourselves…because the relationship is one person. In order to have a deeper relationship that involves the erotic couples must first learn to feel their separation.
Often the way people become enmeshed is through a sense of codependency. Codependency is when we often will take responsibility for our partner’s feelings at the expense of my own. Any thought of “I have to make her/him happy,” is moving into co-dependent relating. Often, it can seem like trying to help someone, but it is really a covert way of controlling another person. When someone is feeling a lot of activation in their bodies and witnessing this feels uncomfortable, the way out of this is to make them stop. One way to do this is to cheer them up or to shame them for how they are feeling “why are you so angry?”
In codependent relationships the compulsive ways that couples feel the need to diminish themselves in order to be “good enough” for their partners can extinguish the flame of wanting each other sexually. When we are committed to being what our partner wants us to be we stop being who we are in order to become what we think is acceptable to our lover. Over time we lose touch with who we really are. The erotic gets pushed down along with our authentic expression.
In separateness, the relationship can allow for the emotional intensity of the relationship. Both partners can tolerate their own feelings that come up when they see their partner in distress and not attempt to get out of it. When you don’t have to take responsibility for the other person’s feelings you can feel your individuality. When you feel more distinction in the relationship it allows for the erotic to have more space to emerge. If you don’t have to worry about hurting the other person then you can allow your erotic drive to push forward not needing to keep it vanilla and safe. If it gets uncomfortable then things can slow down or change course but that titillating feeling can drive into the mystery of what you feel drawn to.
Erotic passion is a selfish spark that pulls one towards what they crave. If the relationship is only concerned with making sure everyone feels okay there is little room for sexy energy to emerge.
How to create more erotic energy.
To begin with you have to work at it. You can’t accept a sexless life or a very mechanical sex life. You must talk about this vulnerable issue and start to work through what is not working.
The other important element of creating more erotic energy is acknowledging the differences. In all relationships, whether homosexual or heterosexual, there is a masculine partner and a feminine partner. Without this energetic distinction there is no pull towards each other. It is the idea of having two Yang energies go towards each other. This doesn’t work. It is important to acknowledge how these energies work in the erotic setting.
The masculine energy (which may be a man or woman) when it is fully expressed from a being who feels this energy at the root of their essence is leading the sexual experience. This doesn’t mean there is lots of communication between both partners but the feminine (which may be a man or a woman) wants to feel that ground of presence and leadership that creates that deep polarity of attraction.
In some ways our cultures desire to create equality has pushed out the awareness of these differences. When we focus on fostering equalness at the expense of differences we lose that seductive energy between the masculine and feminine.
This leads to uncertainty in what is happening in the sexual arena. Who is supposed to initiate? Is it okay for a man to ravage his woman in a heterosexual relationship? Is that too domineering?
I want to make it clear that this does not mean men are in charge and dictating what happens. I know the historical and current way in which men have and can dominate our culture and society in many ways. What I am talking about is not unhealthy patriarchal control but instead an allowance of these essential energies to emerge in the erotic setting and be allowed to express themselves.
How this shows up in my life.
I do believe that my work on getting out of the co-dependent relationship that I had with my partner has really allowed me to feel a deeper connection with her. The belief that I was somehow responsible for her happiness was crippling me in how I showed up in the relationship. As this has allowed more separateness I have found more room for our erotic connection.
The other work I have been doing is really finding the role of my masculine in my family. This means taking the lead in my marriage and with my kids. It doesn’t mean waiting on the sidelines for my wife or kid to figure it out but going directly into the discomfort of what is happening with as much compassion and presence as I can muster. This has also translated into my leading in the sexual realm and not waiting for some signal that it is okay to proceed. I can express my desire and if that is not met with desire on my partner’s end…that’s okay. Since I’m not enmeshed emotionally with her I can feel the disappointment and move on. There is much less on the line when I move towards her.
I’m not always doing this perfectly and there are times when I don’t fully embrace my masculine leadership or I do get caught up in the co-dependent energy in my marriage. However, the work I have done has helped to support a more vibrant sexual energy in my marriage. If I can do it, so can you.
If you or someone you know wants to learn how to create a stronger sexual connection I encourage you to reach out.
Wishing You The Day You Need To Have!
Perel, Esther. (2009). Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence. New York, NY. HarperCollins.
Schnarch, David. (2010). Resurrecting Sex: Solving Sexual Problems and Revolutionizing your Relationship. New York, NY. Harper-Collins.
Welwood, John. (1990). Journey Of The Heart: The Path Of Conscious Love. New York, NY. Harper-Collins.