Thursday, March 6, 2008

Is sex without emotions possible?

In our media-driven culture we see people talk about the grandeur of sex without emotions. When the topic came up in a recent classroom discussion, one student raised her hand and said, "I have an answer for that. When two people have sex a hormone, oxytocin, is released in the brain. It's purpose is to emotionally bond them together." It's a great point -- oxytocin doesn't discriminate between a married couple and "friends with benefits." It's true that oxytocin levels can diminish after multiple relationships, but does that mean that sex without emotions is possible after becoming deeply desensitized?

I have heard many people share their painful experiences of memories of past sexual (or "make out") partners, even long after breaking up. Sexual experiences are designed to be powerful and to make a lifelong impact. Just because people laud the concept of "sex without emotions," doesn't mean it actually exists. Many people are only trying to convince themselves that sex means nothing. If someone feels that sex did affect their emotions, our society makes them feel abnormal.

Even if there is a doubt in someone's mind about this topic, why take the risk? If I want to cross a busy street, I could saunter across four lanes of heavy traffic, as they heed their green light and take the chance that I could get hit by a car. Or I could patiently wait for the "Walk" light to illuminate my path. If there is any doubt, why take a chance when there is a better, more sure way of enjoying sex the way it's supposed to be -- in marriage, where the associated emotions are beneficial not harmful.

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