Sex vs Emotional Connection

SNeacail

New member
I have been noticing, that some people have and issue with their partner having sex with someone else, but not an close emotional attachment. While others it is just the oposite, where its ok to have sex, just no emotional involvement. What drives these different view points?
 

ray

New member
A, my SO's wife, seems to have no issue with O and I having a deep emotional connection but has yet to feel comfortable with us having sex. She and I have not discussed it in depth so I can't explain her specific view point. It's something I hope we get to talking about. I know that they've talked about it together which at this junction is the most important thing, IMO. Perhaps it's a societal thing because really emotional connect seem to be deeper and longer lasting in the end. I mean, I wouldn't want a life partner (mono and/or primary) with whom all I had was great sex and no emotional connection. Yet many of us focus on the sex. Hmmm. This is not a topic that I know a lot about. But it certainly is an interesting one.
 

Ariakas

Bosun
I have been noticing, that some people have and issue with their partner having sex with someone else, but not an close emotional attachment. While others it is just the oposite, where its ok to have sex, just no emotional involvement. What drives these different view points?

Tough question. Really tough. I guess its where, in your head, your insecurity lies. All of thats going to be based on history.

Some peoples insecurity lies in their relationship. For example, long term married suddenly couple decides to swing. The man finds a woman he cares for and falls in love. The sex doesn't bother the wife, as she was getting something out of it, but the love does. Likely a problem with knowing the marriage was sucking wind anyways, or maybe because she isn't feeling included. Either way, the sex is easier to deal with than the love.

Other example. man and women married a short time. Their relationship was based on someone cheating, or a one night stand. Something based purely in sex. The woman finds a new, younger, apparently hotter man, who is dynamite in bed. Add in kinks that she doesn't do with her new husband. And you have an insecurity based on sex.

In both cases, jealousy was based on both history and experience, you have a difference of jealousy towards between sex and the emotional side.

As a 99% of the time non jealous person, I often wonder how others are jealous over the most, what I consider, insignificant things. Dating, sex etc, nothing actually bothers me when I have confidence in my relationship. My jealousy is always rooted in a lack of confidence or a lack of trust. I have only experienced jealousy with one person in almost 12 years. It was a situation where I experience a bit of both of the above. My jealousy was rooted in knowing the relationship was weak and having a lack of confidence in my sexual prowess with her...

thats my take anyways ...

Ari
 

GroundedSpirit

New member
Hey SN,

I think Ari has shared some valuable insight already - pointing to insecurities.

Different people seem to put different parts of a relationship on a higher rung. Problems don't occur until someone starts sawing at the top rung. I guess they think that's all they have left to cling to before falling.
The security thing Ari mentions.

And of course there's a whole host of things that contribute to people's insecurities. We all have them. But - at least for me - I find it fun to have one of them exposed. That way I can work at reinforcing it. I don't want any 'top rungs'. I'd rather weave my big net on the way up so regardless of which rung breaks, I'll land somewhat safely and start climbing again.

GS
 

MonoVCPHG

New member
I wish I had something better to add but because I am "pure mono" for lack of a better word LOL, I don't see any corelletion between not wanting your partner to have either emotional or sexual connection and insecurity.
I think people naturally gravitate towards people who communicate with the same language. How we share ourselves emotionally and physically is another form of communication so it is presumably only natural to seek out people who's method of sharing themselves reflects our own. Maybe some people favour one aspect of sharing over the other because that is the aspect they most heavily value. For me they are very very intertwined so it makes things difficult to really pin down.
 

PollyPocket

New member
For me, post FIRST ffm triad...I had no issues with my hubby and C having sex in front of me. Or really, had no issues with 'anything' done in front of me. It was the texting, Skyping and phone calls - the emotional connections - that drove me crazy! And the main reason that I would NOT be too eager to try the whole thing or even just a casual sex thing again!!!
P2
 

NeonKaos

Custodian
For me, sex comes after the emotional connection. Otherwise, it just feels like I am being used.



This post and the response to it have been moved to:

Casual Sex - Discussion

Because:



Not really what the thread is about. Its more based on the origins of jealousy or insecurity based on either the "sex" or the "love" :) ;) (I thought I had created a post ages ago about that very thought. The chicken egg scenario but I can't seem to find it, bummer)
 

Tonberry

New member
I think for me, emotional cheating would be worse. Now, bear in mind I'm being hypothetical since I'm poly, but I think sex can be just sex, I can see that, but love without sex isn't that different from love with sex to me. It's the same thing. While sex without love and sex with love are two different beasts.

I'm not sure if I'm making sense here... I think feelings for someone aren't weaker or stronger depending on whether you have sex. I think intimacy is important, but it's possible to achieve in ways other than sex. However, there is sport sex, that's purely satisfying a biological need (or "want", I guess), and lovemaking, that is entirely different.

So for me, if you're in a committed relationship and you have casual sex with other people, it's not the same kind of sex than the one you have with your spouse. So I guess it's less threatening? While if you're in love with someone else, it's the same kind of love. So there might be a worry that it will replace the love they had for you, while with sex it's not replacing, it's complimentary since it's a different kind of beast.

EDIT: funnily enough, as I first approached polyamory I had no problem with the idea of my husband being in love with someone else: I knew how much he loves me and was comfortable and confident that this wouldn't change. But I had a small phase in which I was scared about the sex potential. He had never been with anyone before me, so I ended up figuring out that there were two things: 1) I would lost my "status" as his only partner ever. I realised pretty fast that it was a rather silly thing to be possessive about so I got over it quickly. 2) There was the fear that, having known only me, he didn't realise I was terrible, not fulfilling his sexual needs, etc, etc, and that anyone he had sex with would be so much better than me that he'd love me less as a result.
I got over that rather fast too, once I understood what it was I had a problem with.
 
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whimsey

New member
As a mono new to all this, and having been cheated on several times, sexually and emotionally, I am just sorting out all my fears and jealousy...

Because of the cheating, and its obvious sexual nature, I *thought* that sex was the bigger trigger/perceived threat...it certainly brings up issues of inadequacy, and of being abandoned. But as I start to dig deeper, and as I realized the depth of the emotional connection underlying the sexual realtionship, I am finding that it is the emotional connection that I struggle with a lot more - it just gets magnified a lot more when sex is also involved.

I find the emotional connections bring up more fears of being abandoned, and of not measuring up (more inadequacy), but in different ways. And everything is heighted because that emotional connection is pretty much constant, in this time of texts, IM's, emails, video chat, etc. Sex, while fabulous, cannot be constant, it seems to ebb and flow, while the ever present emotional connection seems to flow into every corner of one's life and grows and grows. Though, as I said, when the 2 become one...that is hardest for me.
 

redpepper

New member
I have been noticing, that some people have and issue with their partner having sex with someone else, but not an close emotional attachment. While others it is just the oposite, where its ok to have sex, just no emotional involvement. What drives these different view points?

Never as far as I'm concerned. ;):p I would take emotional/intellectual involvement over sexual involvement any day.

It was the texting, Skyping and phone calls - the emotional connections - that drove me crazy! And the main reason that I would NOT be too eager to try the whole thing or even just a casual sex thing again!!!
P2

Actually, I am on board with this. I wouldn't be able to tolerate a continued emotional connection that goes beyond a set time and place... sex I guess has that and connection doesn't. There would have to be some firm boundaries in place about when is appropriate to act on that connection.
 
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LovingRadiance

Active member
Neither bothers me.
Lying bothers me.
Sneakiness bothers me.
Disrespect bothers me.
Lack of quality time bothers me too.

But my beloved having a loving attachment to someone else doesn't bother me; it makes me feel more loved.
My beloved having great sex doesn't bother me; just gives him a chance to get ideas to make sex with me better.

;)
 

SNeacail

New member
Lying bothers me.
Sneakiness bothers me.
Disrespect bothers me.
Lack of quality time bothers me too.

I think I'm here. When I have flipped out about my husbands nsp, it has usually been disrespect of me (sharing personal info) or lack of quality time. When I found e-mails pointing toward affairs, I was more bothered by the lying, secrecy and giving strangers our home address (the rest hurt, this sent me into anxiety attacks) than the idea that he had sex with someone else.

I could never tell my husband that he couldn't have an emotional connection to someone, because I know that's just impossible for him. He developes some level of emotional connections to most of his close friends. I personally can't wrap my head around casual sex and never have been able to, therefore could never ask it of anyone else.
 

anotherbo

New member
This thread reminds me of a recent poll, about what facets of cheating bothered people most. Interestingly, it found that generally, men were most worried about sexual infidelity, and women about emotional ties.

Most of our core attitudes about romance and sex seem to be rooted in reproduction, and reproductive strategies. And men and women have different risks when a mono partner cheats. The big risk for the woman is emotional ~ he might leave her to raise their kids alone, if he loves the other woman. The big risk for the man is sexual ~ his partner might get pregnant with another man's baby, and he'd be spending his energies raising somebody else's (biological) child. Our jealousies often reflect these things. Polyamorous folks are following other reproductive strategies, but some of these behaviors and feelings still seem to affect us.

Personally, I'm with Ariakas... I seldom feel jealousy unless I'm feeling insecure about a relationship, or about myself.
 

FitChick

New member
I just had this discussion with my partner recently and one question I asked him was apart from me,who else do you feel a strong emotional connection to? I was not surprised when he named 2-3 of his female friends and it does not disturb me that he has those connections. What does bother me is sexual jealousy,what would happen if he became physically intimate with those women he had emotional attachments to? even though he has a 'secondary' I have met her and I understand the connection but I have not met these other women and I think that is where the problem lies.
 
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