THE ART OF BEING A GOOD LOVER

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I’ve heard many statements about a good lover. I learned even more attributes while growing up. Like most people, I haven’t noticed these subconscious messages until I started to question them in adult age. Most of my sexual interactions have had the ideal of a good lover hovering around somewhere above the bed, specially with new partners. You might be surprised, but I have found a pattern that the men who are surely nested in their identity as a good lover are often …not. Who would have thought. However, what often goes unnoticed masked in the arrogance is the deep anxiety and desire to be a good lover. Nobody wants to be a bad lover, and asking “Am I a good lover?“ would require a great vulnerability. I don’t think it’s the right question to ask anyway, even though it’s beautiful and a necessity to learn to have curiosity of your partners desires.

A guy once asked me after a date to rate him on a number scale of how well he did. It showed me so obviously of what kind of a wall he sees separating men and women in the dating market that I decided it wasn’t my job to tear it down. For the sake of fairness I did give him the real reason of why I didn’t want to meet again. I am interested in meeting people as they are, connecting if we connect and if not then why would it be in their interest either to meet again? Because I’m hot maybe, never mind the rest.

So what is the real good question to ask if your genuine interest is to enhance sexual connection? First of all it starts from yourself. Ask and get to know what do you like. For real, without shame and before you were influenced by others. Then ask yourself what is your idea of a good lover and where does it come from, from yourself or from someone else, and if so, do you agree with it? What is your definition of a good lover for the gender you are interested to have sex with, and does the definition change when you think of yourself as a good lover? If you are interested in opposite sex and don’t have the experience of being in their body, please don’t rely on image that porn and media industry gave you. Actually even if you are interested in same sex remember that you have no experience in how they sense things from their body. Dare to ask. If you don’t have that kind of culture with friends to talk openly about sex, go to internet. The answers might be more honest than in real life, but keep a critical eye for the ones who might find it funny to state that men like to hear national anthem, sparkly poop in their belly buttons and a video of that sent to their grandmothers during sex. Everyone is different! Which brings me memories of how I told some guys that I don’t like something they were doing and how they answered “But I did this with my ex and she really liked it!“. Don’t do that either. Just a tip..

My idea of a good lover is someone real. I don’t mind if you are coming too fast or not able to come at all (or don’t want to come at all if you are into tantra and all that), if I’m already in bed with you I don’t care about the size of your penis or if you have a mole somewhere that you hate. Most likely I will research your body for a while since I’m curious of the uniqueness of different bodies, not to rate it or criticise it. What really makes sex amazing for me is what we create together, and that can be anything. If there is no connection there is things to learn how to make that connection happen, but it’s not anyone’s responsibility to make that happen. Not the men’s, nor the women’s. What are probably the biggest damaging influences to my sex life are that men don’t question the role models they get from porn, so they have a very scripted idea of how the sex rolls forward and what’s their job in it, and shame coming from religions and society that has blocked people from exploring their own desires and caused guilt for getting to know their own unique bodies. I often wonder how would the sex life be of two people who are attracted to each other, grown up without outside influences on a remote island. It’s a nice mind game to play.

I have come to conclusion that I have better sex when I get to know the person, and getting to know a person takes a bit of time. At first this was hard to accept for me, coming from subculture where there is a strong movement against sexual prejudice. The need to separate ourselves from all judgements was so strong, that it was hard to think that maybe sex with strangers is just not for me, although it can be fun, safe and responsible. Even when there has been a very strong connection and talking has been easy from the start there has been coming up surprising things in their behaviour when things turn sexual. Sometimes I completely surprise myself from loosing the attraction too fast, for both of our disappointment, even a while ago I was convinced that this is a person who will never stop amazing me. The atmosphere is more relaxed and the connection is stronger when I have had the safe sex talk, and the emotional safety talk preferably in a non-sexual situations. It’s surprisingly hard to ask in the perfect heated dreamy sex moment when is that last time my partner got tested, or if they are planning on a long term relationship if we now have sex. Even if we both agree on that we are not in it for a lasting relationship, just asking it in a certain way in certain moment might create power structures or imbalances that influence the atmosphere in a sad way.

Like we concluded with my partner when I asked him about this, the same communication skills that are so necessary in other life become even more important in sexual interactions when it’s likely to be in one way or another a vulnerable situation and misunderstandings easily happen. And whoever I ask, one thing is always the same, sex is better with feelings. I leave it up to your preference weather you want love, spiritual connection, aggression, lust or all of it.

WHAT HAPPENED TO ME?

I have always been a fruitful ground for ideas out of the box, but now looking back I see some clear bigger turning points and the most absurd one was this. About a year ago I stopped identifying with my identity.

That’s was my standard answer when people ask how I am or what happened to me, since it must have looked a bit odd from outside. I stopped taking the expected, smart steps to be successful, or at least to get along in this life.

I think it has always been happening to individuals around the world, but nowadays it has become something to achieve, a trend to write about. Media is serving us more and more stories about celebrities who understood that fame doesn’t fulfil them so they turned to spirituality. Maybe they found a relief from guru who doesn’t look up to them and who they can look up to instead. We hear stories of people who had it all in the sense that modern western society defines success. Still they couldn’t feel satisfied, so now we are flooded with business people turned into life coaches, healers and channels telling people how to reach their full human potential and find a true self.

I didn’t find myself. I didn’t loose all my fears or start to radiate pure bliss. I think that was what I was unconsciously aiming at though, with all my searching. Instead I lost myself. A self. As a consequence of that I instinctively drove my life as it was to a wall. I was close to graduating as a designer, but when I started walking to school my feet walked me to forest instead. Eventually I resigned against almost everyone’s advice. I totally agree with them, it would have been smart to graduate, I just couldn’t do smart anymore. After some isolated days in meditation my humanness felt odd and silly. I went to grocery store and asked for advice to find supplies, but I couldn’t almost find the words. It felt so absurd to stand there with the grocery lady doing the client service situation like we are two different entities. All the time I felt like I will somehow give myself away, that it shines from me that I don’t do human very well anymore. But no, instead I noticed that people are so absorbed in themselves that they don’t look much outside. I resigned my apartment, and my studio. Having an online identity on top on this actual self which also started to feel alien seemed absurd, so I deactivated my Facebook and Instagram. After that I fell into nice oblivion from my social circles, people have such busy lives nowadays that nobody called me much when I wasn’t popping up in their news feed. When I met my friends and tried to put into words my experience they said it sounds like I’m depressed. I had all the symptoms of depression, no motivation to do anything, no feeling of meaning. Just the feeling of being depressed wasn’t there.

After a while I realised this feeling will not undo itself anymore, so I need to learn to function with it. I did get out of my old country and context but eventually I just found new one, that served me better. I tangled myself back to human emotions but from a choice, and still it’s a funny thought to choose the reality you are in, even in some extent. I believe it is possible to go much further in this than where I am now. I keep coming back to the definition that truth is that which doesn’t disappear if you stop believing in it. I find it calming.

WHO BENEFITS IF WE DON’T UNDERSTAND THAT WE ARE GOING TO DIE?

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I have managed to get to the adulthood without anyone particularly close to me dying. Because of this I haven’t had the possibility to get to know death as most of the people I know have.

I have never been in a funeral and I have never seen a dead human. I have never went through the pain of missing someone close in my life and slowly understanding that there is no way we can connect in life again. Most importantly, I have lived my whole life not understanding that I am going to die. Whether or not my friends of same age have lost someone to death, they don’t seem to understand it either. I often wonder how is it possible that people prioritise the things they do, or care about the things they do, in relation to the bigger picture where us and all of whom we’ve ever known are dying. If someone asks if we know that we are going to die, we would say yes. But in a tangible every day knowing and understanding level, we have no connection to the fact that we are going to die. Either does most of our parents, but they might show a more realistic, or irrational, fear of dying.

In western world death has been so closely connected to war and violence, that it has created a disconnection to traditions where death has been more natural event. We still carry the influence from wars from our traumatised parents or grandparents, but don’t have a more peaceful tradition of death to replace it. Most countries have been in war within the last few generations, and news travel fast in our times so wars in distant places touch us in a totally different way than before. I believe it is in close connection with how we have lost respect and appreciation of growing old in modern western world. It’s like the youth and elders have both forgotten how much the young ones would have to learn from elders.

 

 

 

For me the time of pregnancy has been bringing me a lot closer to death. It has offered me a way to really comprehend it in new level. I find it so magical that there first isn’t a separate sense of consciousness, and then at some point it just merges into existence. That’s how I see death, in reverse. Being not born and therefore not having this sense of separation isn’t good or bad, it just is. That’s why I don’t see death as a taboo either. Still I see our society as a whole distancing itself as far from it as possible. In a way I understand it as a natural animal behaviour. All animals avoid death instinctively, including humans. But then there came this thought, how would our society look different if it would have more natural relationship to death? What kind of decisions would people make, what kind of values would be prioritised? I see most decisions made from either fear, or lack of perspective. Most often it’s fear of risking financial safety or loosing acceptance from other people.

It would be tempting to claim that there is some bad guys somewhere who want us to stay asleep and not question anything, and I’m sure there is many of those people, and many of them are in power positions. Still when I think of them individually, what else is an insurance agent spreading worrying statistics than a human afraid of loosing their own safety? Or a marketing expert trying to convince new parents that they need a lot of things for their baby to be good parents? Or a teacher getting angry at students who ask what comes after the universe ends? In a western world with freedom of speech, there isn’t really anyone to accuse of keeping us asleep than ourselves. Not that accusation would ever be beneficial, but I see a lot of people feeling betrayed by how things are not as they were told to be. We do live in a world of freedom of speech, but also in a world of manipulation. It’s up to us to learn and teach our children to recognise when they are being manipulated by media or teachers, or anyone, into making choices out of fear.

Ultimately life is not endless, even though death in our society has been isolated and sterilised out of sight. People who travel anywhere outside of western world know this. They tell that they are going on a trip to India or Africa, and very often the responses are warnings or even trying to convince the person to not go, because it’s so dangerous. Only when you go, you find out how people somehow manage to stay alive without all that we thought is so essential for survival.

It’s important to think of other peoples motives when they try to influence our decision making and comment on our choices.

The more I question what is behind other peoples responses to my life choices the more free I become, because I notice how it’s not actually my own fear I’m carrying around. At the same time I’m developing a death awareness which allows me to prioritise with better perspective, so that instead of limiting myself out of fear of death I actually live more. Exactly the same lifestyle can be enjoyable or fear infused for different individuals, so there really isn’t a right or wrong way to live, but I hope that for whoever is reading this the choices would not come out fear but from a place of freedom.