Thursday, February 2, 2012

Sex Diaries: 6 Things I Learned About Love From Other People's Sex Lives


 'No' is the first step on the path to 'yes.' I learned this asking 2000 people to keep 7-day anonymous diaries of their private lives for my new book The Sex Diaries Project: What We're Saying About What We're Doing.

 Most people say no. They refuse, explaining that they're "normal" and "definitely not an exhibitionist." Or they politely explain that they're single and "not just boring, but really boring." And so I call back a few days later and point out that the project's objective is to capture actual people's private lives. And eventually they say yes.

 Their ensuing diaries have blown open how I think about sex and relationships:

 6 Things I Learned About Love From Other People's Sex Lives

1. There Are No Rules

  There's a whole world of ways that people live out their private lives. Some have a happy monogamous marriage. Or three consecutive ones. Some live solo with a rotating cast ofvibrators. Some switch partners every year or two for years on end. Some have a committed partner and lots of partner. You can do whatever you'd like.

 2. The Happiest Daters Have An Interim Plan

 Dating diarists are often playing the field for 6-24 months at a stretch. And the happiest ones are meeting their sexual/emotional/daily support needs in the meantime, usually through close friends and play partners. It's the dating diarists who don't do this -- the ones who are ready to hump the first viable candidate who walks by, or in desperate need of an ear -- who are miserable. 

3. Couples Are Like Little Companies

 Some companies make widgets; others provide customer service. It goes much better if all involved know which kind of company they're in. I found that there are three main types, with clear pros and cons of each.

 4. Men And Women Are Similar

 Forget about the Mars and Venus crap. I collect diaries anonymously through The Sex Diaries Project, and when I read them, there's no gender or name attached. I frequently read entire diaries assuming a different gender. Men and women are often indistinguishable in how they experience emotion -- and write about it. It's how they express it to each other that's different.

5. Texting Won't Do It For You

  It seems like a great idea, but it's not. In over 2000 diaries, I've never once seen positive emotional development based on text conversations. It's because texts communicate information, not emotion. Texts work well for scheduling and cute midday hellos and sexting, and that's about it.

 6. 'Curating Sex Diaries' Is A Valid Job Description

 It's true! If you had told me that I would spend the next five years doing this professionally, I would not have believed you. Chances are if you find it awesome and fascinating, others will too. 

Intrigued? I invite you to come keep your own diary, or read other peoples', at The Sex Diaries Project.

 6 Things I Learned About Love From Other People's Sex Lives


Post a Comment

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | Modern Warfare 3