If most of us are honest, it makes us feel good to know that someone wants to have sex with us. We get that little ego boost because some guy wants to do the no pants dance with us. On the surface, that doesn’t seem too bad. But how do you prevent every sexual encounter from becoming about validating yourself? How do you not pursue men to boost your self-confidence?
It’s sadly quite natural for gay men to have some hang-ups about sex. We spent our formative years hiding our true selves. Some people had it really hard coming out, and others had a relatively easy time of it. Whatever your situation, you probably have accumulated a certain amount of shame that is so ingrained you sometimes don’t even notice that it’s there. Combine that with a sometimes destructive gay scene where you feel obliged to conform to unrealistic body standards, and despair if you can’t meet them.
Naively, many of us think the gay scene would be a place where we feel at ease, but the gay scene can sometimes leave us feeling lonely, unattractive and just plain not good enough. To cope with our own particular set of problems, sex might be a salvation, an easy way to resolve feelings of loneliness, anger and depression.
But sex can never be a solution to issues that we need to deal with ourselves. We shouldn’t be using it for validation, or out of anger or guilt or loneliness. If you attach a negative emotion to this experience, what can you possibly gain from it?
So it’s important to be mindful about what you want from sex. I’m not saying it can’t just be fun and free of any drama, and sometimes it’s a whole bucket load of fun. But I do think that we can forget that we have a choice about the sex we want to have.
But how do we get that connection? How do we stop viewing ourselves as objects to be refined, never toned, lean or ripped enough? How can we investigate our bodies, without sex?
Whatever you do, I think the key is to find something that makes you feel comfortable in your own skin and sex is no longer about validation, or solving feelings of loneliness or depression. It’s no longer about pecs, biceps, and ripped torsos. Sex becomes a wonderful connection between two equally awesome people, blissful in each other’s open arms. The heavens probably won’t open, but you will make the neighbours incredibly jealous. I don’t know about you, but that’s what I consider to validating sex.