Sex with Your Eyes Open

When we have sex, our physical bodies function as conduits for our emotions and thoughts. In other words, we can express and deepen what we feel through doing the deed. And while it may seem like pleasure is the main objective of getting down and dirty, more vital than those fleeting moments of ecstasy – in the course of an intimate relationship, anyway – is that sex is the glue that holds partners together. For that reason, like most things in life, it’s important that we enter into it (and participate in it) with our eyes wide open. Literally and figuratively speaking.

Let’s start with the figurative…
Oftentimes we’re so focused on finding intimacy… having a relationship… connecting with that ever elusive “one,” that we ignore the signs of unavailability in a partner or potential paramour. We think that by virtue of having a physical relationship with someone, we’re forging an emotional bond with them as well. This is not always the case. Sheer physical pleasure can be the aim of an encounter, and that’s fine, provided we’re conscious of our intentions! To that end (and to keep your “eyes open”), honest communication is required before situations turn sexual. Whatever it is you’re looking for between the sheets, you have to make sure you and your bedmate are on the same page. You can find this out by addressing it openly, but you can also see clearly if you pay attention to the signs they’re sending about their emotional availability.

Does sex lead to love?
That said, sometimes we’re aware of what we’re dealing with, but for some reason think we can change a person’s intentions. Rarely is that possible. Worse even than confusing physical connection with an emotional one, is the belief that by sleeping with someone we can hold onto them or force them into giving us what we want. In other words, manipulation via copulation. Remember, that using sex to get love is an ill-fated mission.

Sex as a weapon
Universal law of love numero uno is: you cannot make someone love you. And the person you are meant to be with will not need to be forced. Trying to do so via any sexual means is only going to lead to increased hurt and confusion (not to mention decreased self-confidence). Using sex as a weapon to get what you want will most likely only blow up in your face. But, see sex for what it is, and you – and your partner can make the most of it. And whatever the deal is, be sure it’s a reciprocal exchange.

Now, more literally speaking…
During sex, we’re at our most vulnerable. This can be scary – after all, allowing another person to witness you so raw opens you up to a whole new level of hurt – but it’s also an opportunity for genuine connection. This is where true intimacy between lovers can be found. Yet, recent studies suggest that only 30% of couples have sex with their eyes open. And among those, less than half actually orgasm with eye contact. What’s that all about?

Open your eyes
Well, it’s pretty simple (and common). Our desire for intimacy is impeded by fear of it – and also embarrassment. But in actuality, we’re all human, and thereby, sexual beings who crave true connection. In order to get that connection, to reach a place where two become one not just physically, but spiritually, it’s time that we let those insecurities go. By experiencing sex with our eyes literally open, we are able not only to truly see what our partners are feeling – physically and emotionally – but to share with each other our deepest selves. The result is one that translates far beyond the bedroom and into the bond we share in our every day lives. As a pair, you now know each other in a way that no one else does – and what could be more empowering than that?

Historically, practices such as Tantra and texts like the Kama Sutra have been aimed at allowing individuals to come together and experience the sacred nature of sex. Meeting each other’s eyes during climax is a simple step that allows us to access that divine space. After all, if the old adage is true, and the eyes are the mirror to the soul, wouldn’t it make sense for us all to open them?

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