Following are leftover questions from my online chat, “Fifty Shades of Love,” February 25:
My husband of 12 years and I are very happy and have a very satisfying sex life.
Sometimes we’re more passionate than others, sometimes we’re creative, other times we have a comfortable routine where we both know exactly what to do that works for both of us.
To me, this is a sacred part of our love that we shouldn’t mess around with.
But my close girlfriends who are all into the 50 Shades “cult” as I call it, say we’re missing excitement, variety, increased passion, etc. What do you think?
Don’t mess with happiness because of what others say or do. This is between you and your husband.
If you’re curious enough to explore the topic with him, do so. Just be sure you don’t give the wrong impression that you’re dissatisfied with his lovemaking or envy your girlfriends’ alleged sexual excitement.
Also, he won’t appreciate it if he thinks you’re discussing your sex life with others.
But don’t feel pressured to raise the topic because of others’ hype.
Sometimes the private knowledge of what works well for a couple is a treasure in itself, and shouldn’t be tarnished by comparisons.
My girlfriend likes to have sex while watching erotic porn. She particularly likes seeing unusually endowed male porn stars, which I find off-putting.
I’m a normal healthy male but the comparison to those men is uncomfortable even though I’m sure some are artificially enhanced.
When she read the 50 Shades of Grey books, she said a lot of it was tame compared to the porn we can watch together.
While I’m lucky to have a girlfriend who’s so eager for sex, I worry about her need for increased (false) imagery to get it on.
Your concern’s understandable. Most women try to boost the confidence of their men rather than compare them to inflated porn stars.
You’re only lucky to have a girlfriend who likes sex IF she has attitudes and expectations that can work with yours.
A girlfriend who needs perpetually increased stimulation and would rather get it from imagery than from you, may well be porn-addicted.
That’s NOT healthy, and hard to stop. Sex therapists say it’s not an easy task to rehabilitate a sex addict.
Tell her what you feel about the comparisons and her reliance on porn. If she doesn’t modify her taste for the sake of the relationship, the next move is yours.
I was very much against anything reflecting erotic or rough sex. I thought it was playing with fire and potentially dangerous.
Then I read 50 Shades of Grey (for curiosity and because everyone I knew was reading it) and thought maybe it’s good sometimes to have an arm’s-length turn-on.
I didn’t suddenly want to be tied up by my husband, but I did feel friskier more often during that time of reading.
It lasted for a good while after. I’m hoping the same happens when I see the movie.
You know your limits. So it’s wise to enjoy the gains from titillating reading and not stress about going beyond your comfort zone.
This kind of “arm’s-length” arousal has been going on for generations… from couples who read the ancient Hindu text, the Kama Sutra, together, to those who jointly read the letters in Penthouse Magazine, etc.
There’s nothing new or dangerous about couples wanting to enjoy sex more without feeling coerced to go beyond their limits.
Why so much controversy about the 50 Shades movie?
Couples have been into bondage, discipline, dominance, submission, sadism, and masochism for centuries – straights, gays, young, old, Romans, Greeks, North Americans, etc.
I say to each his or her own. We don’t need a book or a movie to tell us what to do.
We live in a very connected world, so between media promotion and social chatter, it’s hard to not have some curiosity about a hot topic.
Is 50 Shades of Grey (trilogy and film) controversial? Only if you take them too seriously.
E.L. James struck a goldmine with her medium-soft porn books that women could read covertly on iPads and tablets, even in public.
However, some critics claim the books and film encourage women to accept a form of domestic abuse i.e. trying to please a man by accepting pain.
Others say the works liberate women to be more sexually adventuresome.
Tip of the day:
Every couple needs to balance each other’s sexual desires with their personal boundaries.