Monday, March 06, 2006

A Sex-free Me...Until Easter

I guess I should've posted this last week, but let's not forget how sick I was.

I've been feeling the need for a change for a while, and I went through the short yet satisfying list of hedonist things I do that I could do without, because, let's face it, I'm not Siddartha, and I won't reach Enlightenment and become the Buddha because of it, so I should stop.

There's no way I could survive without chocolate or caffeine, and I don't want to try to live without bubble baths, books or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, so I opted to give up sex, and yes, that includes sex with myself. Here's why.

I remember the last time I had sex. It was Saturday, I suppose, because it was about 4:30 in the morning. He wanted me to be on top, I wanted him to be someone else, and afterward we never spoke of it. We always claimed we were just friends, and I used that to justify not having to justify my actions to him, and I had my suspicions that he felt the same way, and I was sure he wouldn't have done me the courtesy of telling me. After all, we were just friends.

I stopped sleeping with him because it became clear to me (thanks to some outside realizations) that it was him or me, and I will always choose myself over a man. I enjoy sex, but I don't define myself by it, and I'm certainly not going to lose who I am because of it. Afterward it occurred to me that I'd broken my one rule, the one thing I swore I'd never do: I let it be casual.

I don't think sex is dirty and wrong like church told me when I was growing up. I do, however, believe that casual fucking for nothing other than to get yourself off is wrong. Is that what I did? I like to think not, that I did care more than that, that it was something more than fucking and less than lovemaking, and I imagine I'll slap the word "passion" on it because that's how I prefer to think of it. I think everyone could use a little passion.

But even that doesn't take away the casual nature in which we could just end this with no words and everything would be normal. It was all so casual: You wake up one day, realize you're becoming something you don't like, and you stop doing what it is you think contributes to that. You don't talk about it, you never mention it, it's like it never even happened. It becomes just another ghost you think you hear when you can't sleep at night.

Ergo, I'm giving up sex - pleasures of the flesh (note how I don't call it a sin). I'm going to see what I'm like when I don't let my inner demons take hold of me. I don't think I ever really craved the sex as much as I let on, anyway. I think, really, I liked it best afterward: I like the look of skin in afterglow, I like the smell of a room that's loaded with pheromones, I like the kind of sleep you get when you've really tired yourself out, I like to be held when I sleep.

I'm going to stop seeking pleasure and try to find it in the mundane. I think that's a good place to start.


Michael said...

Wasn't the going without for 40 days also the premise of a movie? ;-)

I think I'll give up sex as well...oh wait..I shoudl give up something I get on a regular basis or else it's not really that big a sacrifice...

Wendy said...

I'm sure it's some sub-par movie. I haven't seen it, being as though I find Josh Hartnett to be both a) unattractive and b) untalented. In the movie industry, you need to have either talent or looks. There isn't really room for ugly people who can't act their way out of a paper bag. But I digress...

Anonymous said...

Hello. Interesting post.
When I was 22, I took a trip to England on a six-month work visa. I made up my mind before I left that I wasn't going to be intimate with anyone I might meet over there, being as how I'd just been through a lot of "casual" and unfulfilling experiences. What would be the point there when I'm only a transient. It worked out great, no worries. Incidentally, I had to bicycle everywhere I went and that may have helped. I recommend lots of exercise (although ... it could act as a stimulant as well).
You know, I've always thought celibacy might have saved my life, because this was 1982-83, and AIDS was in its worldwide breakout. It was then concentrated in the biggest cities and gay pops. (Straight people were still in denial they could even get it.) San Fran, New York, Toronto, Paris ... I was near an international university ... and London, and if I'd indulged in casual sex, that's an undeniable risk I would have been taking, when you think now about the partners-of-partners metric.