From Lovers to Friends
From our Winter 2015/2016 issue. Be the first to read the next issue of Positive Life in print – Subscribe.
Hayden and Lake had come to the crossroads so many of their married friends had warned them about. Somehow, without noticing, they’d gone from being lovers to being friends.
Don’t get the wrong idea, Hayden and Lake had always been friends. In fact, their relationship began as friends years back, meeting at a music festival and sharing a rain tarp fashioned from a bin bag while watching their favourite band during a deluge. The spark between them grew slowly, until one afternoon stretched out on the bed together browsing Netflix, things took a passionate turn. It was weeks before friends and family saw them again.
Things must have heated to the point of incandescence (which is 2,482 ?, by the way) because, once they did reappear, the two of them were radiating an awesome light. When things get that hot, you never expect they’ll cool down. But they did. And we’re so often unprepared for that, we don’t see it coming, or see it happening.
Some years in, Lake discovered that emotion was key to sexual arousal and wanted more time talking and caressing. Lake wanted moments of closeness that didn’t always lead to sex, as well as moments that did. Lake felt sexual when met emotionally. Hayden had discovered that the act of lovemaking created more space for emotional connection. Hayden wanted sex to flow easily between the two of them as it had when they first became lovers. Hayden felt their emotional connection was a constant and saw sex as a way to nourish that stability and closeness. Hayden felt emotionally connected when met sexually. Sex was a boost for an already solid emotional foundation.
According to award-winning writer and board-certified editor of the life sciences Kelli Miller, “Some seek sex because they like how it feels. Others, although they very well may also derive pleasure from the act, are generally more interested in the relationship enhancement that sex offers. Researchers describe these differences as body-centered versus person-centered sex.” Body-centered is when you have sex because you like the way it makes your body feel. The sensations create a feeling of shared joy and openness that is a form of connection in itself. Person-centered is when you have sex to connect, the emotions involved and the relationship are the priority.
It was tempting for Hayden and Lake to view one of these as better than the other – until they saw that both body-centered sex and person-centered sex are focused on the same thing, connection. It was as if they’d both been standing in a pitch dark room and the light came back on, they both wanted the same thing. Hayden and Lake began to listen to one another differently. When Hayden asked for sex, Lake heard a request for connection. When Lake asked for emotional closeness, Hayden heard a request for connection.
They each created two lists that encompassed their Sexual Emotional Place of Connection Practice that I invite you to try too. The first includes activities, experiences, actions and words that create sexual connection for you and the second, activities, experiences, actions and words that create emotional connection. Seeing one another more clearly, compassion and shared passion grew again and they continued their journey back to one another.
Dawn Cartwright is a Tantric visionary, sacred writer, world traveler, and innovator in bio-energetic Tantra fusion. Dawn will offer: The Red Tent . Sacred Sexuality for Women, April 14th-15th, Sacred Sexuality . How We Love . 2-Nights of Tantric Bliss, April 15th-17th, in the Wicklow Mountains, and a Deluxe Couples Tantra Weekend in W.B. Yeats Country, April 21st-24th. dawncartwright.com