Woman Crave Desire NOT Assault

Desiring to be desired is a completely different thing than somehow "secretly craving" un-welcomed advances.

Please listen. Seriously, this is literally life and death stuff.

For years, I've been taking note of how women answer this question: "How do you desire to feel in your romantic or sexual relationship?"

Consistently, whether they put down two or ten feelings on their list, DESIRED is a tip-top prioritized feeling. Also on that list, often right beneath desired, is feeling SAFE.

TRUTH: Overwhelmingly, what is most important to women in their relationships is to FEEL both desired and safe.

This is not trivial stuff. Women NEED to feel desired. It's the difference between a luminous being skipping down the street drenched in a sense of womanly aliveness and a hunched over shell of a female human body trudging through her life.

There are as many ways to make a woman feel desire as there are women. And there are some major themes here too: thoughtfully compliment her, present her with gifts that signal your genuine appreciation of her, and passionately initiate sex.

Literally or metaphorically, occasionally or frequently, we women need to be pushed up against a wall and DEVOURED.

This is why one of my favorite moments in life is a memory of leaving a London theater, being pulled into an alley, nudged into the shelter of doorway and away from the rain, and passionately kissed. That was a straight up Rom-Com moment. Mmmm. It was nearly twenty years ago and it still takes my breath away, even to write about it. Only because I was on a 5th date with my first love. Had that been anyone else but my partner of the time, it might have been similar actions and it would have been an entirely different story, one of assault.

Because the only way these Rom-com esque moments work in life is when the feeling of desirability is met with a simultaneously deep presence of safety.

Wanting to feel desired is AN ENTIRELY different from somehow wanting to be assaulted.

This seems really obvious, right?

And yet I am being bombarded by reminders of how easily and often our society messes this up.

Here's a very specific example of this confusion - and it comes from an MD/PhD psychiatrist!

My friend just called me to update me on how her couples therapy is going. Not realizing that she was going to un-leash a Kitter rant, this is the story she shared with me.

"Well, I guess it's funny because the therapist did call me out a bit. She/ the therapist pointed out that it was ironic that on the one hand I want my husband to initiate sex more often and to sometimes be more forceful in bed too. And yet I am so angry at him for not realizing how hurt I am by his support of Trump. Because what upsets me most about Trump is his statements that pro-port and normalize dominance of women.”

WHAAAAAAAAAT????! I am getting better at listening without reacting. Not this time!

Desiring feeling desired by your husband IS NOT the same as being okay with men manipulating their power to attack women's bodies. Desiring to be desired is a completely different thing than wanting un-welcomed advances.

My friend wants consistent moments with her husband that make her feel like I did in that London moment. She wants to feel the adrenaline pulse through her female body as she feels the truth that she is the source of his desire for her. YES to that! Hot, Yum, YES. I repeat, YES.

My friend does not want a man to assume that he can manipulate his power and use it to talk about or actually grab, attack, and assault her body.

See. Two COMPLETELY different things.

Safety first: A genuine and respectful feeling of being desired is always, ALWAYS, accompanied by a feeling of safety.

Bringing us back to the above mentioned list, one that always also includes a desire to feel safe.

Let’s use the example of cat-calls to illuminate this truth further. Most often catcalls resonate to woman as terrifying. That’s because desirability without a feeling of safety is equivalent to every cell in woman’s body being shouting “DANGER!!!!!” Always. Without a feeling of safety, desirability equals threat and danger.

A feeling of safety can't exist without consent. Therefore truly consensual acts are void of violence and yet also quite wonderfully full of desire. Because, genuine desirability always requires a true feeling of safety.

(Re-cap) Women desperately need to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Men, if you're in partnership with a woman, she NEEDS to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Women, if you are in partnership with a woman, she NEEDS to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Women, make sure your partners are reminded that you NEED to FEEL desired. Then tell them exactly how they can provide that feeling for you. Then ask, “What do you need from me so that you can provide that feeling of desire to me?” Then listen and act!

Seriously. All of us, remember the importance of desire. Know that desire is only truly felt in the context of safety. Prioritize a feeling and truth of safety, always and over everything.

FEELING desired vs BEING desired (massive difference!)

This is an important closing note: Humans FEEL. Object ARE.

Let's use cat-calls to illuminate this point further. A big, strong, dude shouting at me from a car, "Damn! Tits look good in that dress!" is NOT the same thing as my partner meeting me at a cocktail party and softly and cheekily whispering those exact same words into my ear. In one case, I am object - a thing on the side of the street of which one thinks it’s okay to shout at. In the other case, I a human woman and thankful for feeling authentically appreciated and desired.

*If you want to understand more of the science and psychology of women's desire to be desired, I highly recommend you read Dr Marianne Brandon and Dr. Ogi Ogas's book: Desiring to be desired is a completely different thing than somehow "secretly craving" un-welcomed advances.

Please listen. Seriously, this is literally life and death stuff.

For years, I've been taking note of how women answer this question: "How do you desire to feel in your romantic or sexual relationship?"

Consistently, whether they put down two or ten feelings on their list, DESIRED is a tip-top prioritized feeling. Also on that list, often right beneath desired, is feeling SAFE.

TRUTH: Overwhelmingly, what is most important to women in their relationships is to FEEL both desired and safe.

This is not trivial stuff. Women NEED to feel desired. It's the difference between a luminous being skipping down the street drenched in a sense of womanly aliveness and a hunched over shell of a female human body trudging through her life.

There are as many ways to make a woman feel desire as there are women. And there are some major themes here too: thoughtfully compliment her, present her with gifts that signal your genuine appreciation of her, and passionately initiate sex.

Literally or metaphorically, occasionally or frequently, we women need to be pushed up against a wall and DEVOURED.

This is why one of my favorite moments in life is a memory of leaving a London theater, being pulled into an alley, nudged into the shelter of doorway and away from the rain, and passionately kissed. That was a straight up Rom-Com moment. Mmmm. It was nearly twenty years ago and it still takes my breath away, even to write about it. Only because I was on a 5th date with my first love. Had that been anyone else but my partner of the time, it might have been similar actions and it would have been an entirely different story, one of assault.

Because the only way these Rom-com esque moments work in life is when the feeling of desirability is met with a simultaneously deep presence of safety.

Wanting to feel desired is AN ENTIRELY different from somehow wanting to be assaulted.

This seems really obvious, right?

And yet I am being bombarded by reminders of how easily and often our society messes this up.

Here's a very specific example of this confusion - and it comes from an MD/PhD psychiatrist!

My friend just called me to update me on how her couples therapy is going. Not realizing that she was going to un-leash a Kitter rant, this is the story she shared with me.

"Well, I guess it's funny because the therapist did call me out a bit. She/ the therapist pointed out that it was ironic that on the one hand I want my husband to initiate sex more often and to sometimes be more forceful in bed too. And yet I am so angry at him for not realizing how hurt I am by his support of Trump. Because what upsets me most about Trump is his statements that pro-port and normalize dominance of women.”

WHAAAAAAAAAT????!

Desiring feeling desired by your husband IS NOT the same as being okay with men manipulating their power to attack women's bodies. Desiring to be desired is a completely different thing than wanting un-welcomed advances.

My friend wants consistent moments with her husband that make her feel like I did in that London moment. She wants to feel the adrenaline pulse through her female body as she feels the truth that she is the source of his desire for her. YES to that! Hot, Yum, YES. I repeat, YES.

My friend does not want a man to assume that he can manipulate his power and use it to talk about or actually grab, attack, and assault her body.

See. Two COMPLETELY different things.

Safety first: A genuine and respectful feeling of being desired is always, ALWAYS, accompanied by a feeling of safety.

Bringing us back to the above mentioned list, one that always also includes a desire to feel safe.

Let’s use the example of cat-calls to illuminate this truth further. Most often catcalls resonate to woman as terrifying. That’s because desirability without a feeling of safety is equivalent to every cell in woman’s body being shouting “DANGER!!!!!” Always. Without a feeling of safety, desirability equals threat and danger.

A feeling of safety can't exist without consent. Therefore truly consensual acts are void of violence and yet also quite wonderfully full of desire. Because, genuine desirability always requires a true feeling of safety.

(Re-cap) Women desperately need to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Men, if you're in partnership with a woman, she NEEDS to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Women, if you are in partnership with a woman, she NEEDS to FEEL desired.

Seriously. Women, make sure your partners are reminded that you NEED to FEEL desired. Then tell them exactly how they can provide that feeling for you. Then ask, “What do you need from me so that you can provide that feeling of desire to me?”(*) Then listen and act!

Seriously. All of us, remember the importance of desire. Know that desire is only truly felt in the context of safety. Prioritize a feeling and truth of safety, always and over everything.

FEELING desired vs BEING desired (massive difference!)

This is an important closing note: Humans FEEL. Object ARE.

Let's use cat-calls to illuminate this point further. A big, strong, dude shouting at me from a car, "Damn! Tits look good in that dress!" is NOT the same thing as my partner meeting me at a cocktail party and softly and cheekily whispering those exact same words into my ear. In one case, I am object - a thing on the side of the street of which one thinks it’s okay to shout at. In the other case, I a human woman and thankful for feeling authentically appreciated and desired.

(*) Alison Armstrong’s incredible work and library of books has hugely influenced me.

**** For more on desirability, monogamy, and pornography, I highly recommend you read Dr Marianne Brandon and Dr. Ogi Ogas's book: Unlocking the Sexy in Surrender: Using the Neuroscience of Power to Recharge Your Sex Life. Like, download it right now. Right now.

You can also listen in as Dr Marianne Brandon and I talk “Sexy in Surrender”and listen in as I host Dr. Ogi Ogas on the O’actually podcast.

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