Most writers are people watchers and I’m no exception. The only difference between me and some of my counterparts is that I’m a bit of a talker and social butterfly where some of my counterparts are a bit more reserved. What does this mean for me? Front row seat v. the sidelines. It also means that it’s not uncommon for me to be used as an advice giver, sounding board or just an empathetic ear.
After the loss of my friend at the end of last week, my introspective side kicked in. It seems like there have been two common threads in the dissatisfaction my friends have been expressing: Their inability to find the “perfect” significant other and/or how they weren’t “perfectly” happy in their sex life. You guys are astute. I know you picked up on the same thing I did. Perfect seems to be thrown around a lot.
As imperfect people that’s an awfully big word to be bandied about like that…. Nobody’s perfect. Not me. Not you. We’re all flawed….and those that are narcissistic enough to believe they’re perfect? They’re not exactly relationship material, are they?
So why do we get hung up on “Perfect”? Because, seriously…my friends weren’t the only ones that got caught up in the hype. Hello! It took me 16 years before “fully” committing to my relationship with my husband by getting married. He was my best friend. He’d do anything for me and me for him…except get married.
For a little while I was afraid that maybe my beloved romance novels had given me unrealistic expectations regarding relationships. But no. That wasn’t right. Anyone who’s read the “greats” knows the men and women aren’t perfect. They fight themselves, each other, their fears…plenty of conflict…but they find a way to make it to their happily ending.
But if not my romances, what?
Well, okay. Maybe not Disney in particular….just fairy tales. Think about it. Girl somehow becomes a damsel in distress, in need of a rescue. The hero who rides in always looks perfect, knows what to say and wears the perfect clothes. He IS perfect. The conflict is always caused by some outside evil source that he vanquishes with a flourish….and the moment ends with the perfect happily ever after kiss. Right?
There is no accidental going in too fast for that kiss only to have your teeth smack against each other… Or someone bobs when they should have weaved and the heads get knocked together…. Or you step in and right onto the hero/heroine’s foot, Yeah…Never happens.
As for the sex…. The assumption would be that guys are the only ones who have this complaint, right? Wrong. I saw a funny clip a few days back and wondered how I was going to share it with you guys. Turns out I didn’t have long to wait. It’s a great fit for today’s post.
In porn, sex happens all over the place…often incidentally and with strangers. In fact, a friend shared something she saw the other day and I couldn’t help but crack up!
What you never see in porn are some of the stories some of my friends and I have laughed about. You know….getting so hot and sweaty with your partner that you’ve basically stuck to each other…and when you go to separate there’s a big suction “pop” sound that has you rolling with laughter. Or deciding to get all hot and racy with a partner after a day on the beach with a lover only to find out tanning oil and satin sheets don’t always go so well together as you slide onto the bed…and keep sliding…right into the bedside table.
Or maybe it’s the exhausted sex after a long day…where it’s just a relief and a release of tension. Not spectacular, but not bad. The imperfection could be caused by *gasp* a lack of orgasm. Maybe sex was initiated but fatigue and stress cause a lack of aroused response from the man in the relationship. How’s that possible? Isn’t that all men think of???? (For those of you who may not know me well…insert sarcasm here.)
So much perfection we’re expected to live up to…. Unrealistic perfection. Me? It took me a while to figure out that the hot, spicy, romantic gestures and feelings are cyclical. That much of that IS based on what we get in fairy tales and the like… What hit me over the head is when I started to notice it was a cycle. The things that never changed? The fact that the guy sitting patiently next to me was my very best friend. He knew me inside and out….and I knew him. More importantly, we loved and accepted each other just the way we were…flaws and all. The reality is, when I looked harder, I found that those flaws were almost custom made to match mine. Which made us imperfectly perfect for each other. Does he buy me roses every day and massage my feet? No. But he finds recipes he thinks I’d enjoy and makes me dinner. He’ll be at the grocery store and see Pepperidge Farm is having a BOGO on Milano cookies and will pick some up because he knows I love them. We’ll sit down to watch tv and I’ll scratch his back because I know he enjoys that. I’ll hold off watching something on the DVR till he gets home because it’s more fun to watch it together.
As for the sex…guys aren’t the only ones these days that have unrealistic expectations. Sometimes ours come from books, sometimes from porn. Either way there are things we do to one another that undermine the ability to have great sex.
Examples? Many women simply don’t talk to their men about it. They take it, they fake it…then they either don’t talk about it at all…or they complain to their friends about it. Here’s a sad truth about that… Ladies, if the women you’re complaining to have significant others, chances are that the conversation didn’t just stay between you and your friend. If their partner is friends with yours…guess who has heard about your complaints? Although we don’t acknowledge it often, guys have feelings, too. They are capable of being hurt. And before we get up on our high horse and say something about their egos…imagine how you would feel if someone important to you said you sucked in bed. Yeah. Major ouch. Guys, before you think you’re out of the woods on this one….You’re just as bad as we are, so the same thing applies to you!!!
The truth is, not every guy is uber experienced. In fact, it wasn’t until a little later in my relationship that I found out my husband, then boyfriend, was a bit intimidated by me and my experience. Sure, I was a virgin when we got together…but that was about the only think I hadn’t done…and multiple times. I assumed that because he’d had sex before (with one other girl) that HE was more experienced. After that conversation, I’ve tried never to assume again. We talk.
If communication lines are open it’s amazing how rarely misunderstandings happen. It’s also a great way to teach your partner what you like…. And you know what else? Sex is messy…and physical…so it stands to reason that there are going to be funny, goofy moments! Enjoy them! Laughter is sexy, too…not to mention healing.
Bottom line…before rushing to “perfection”….take a second. Look closely at whatever it was you were about to complain about. Is it your perception of what should be that has you bothered or is it something truly wrong? Sometimes, if you look closely enough you’ll find there’s something pretty amazing in the imperfections.
What do you think? Do you think I’m crazy for thinking this way? It’s okay to share… I’m comfortable in my crazy. Have you found beauty in imperfection? Tell me about it!
Me? I’ve embraced my imperfection… It’s made life so much more enjoyable!