Planned vs. Spontaneous sex - Debunking the myth
By ANTONINA DĘBOGÓRSKA
In the movies, we often see scenes in which the actor throws himself at his female counterpart and rips her clothes off.
A sudden, indomitable lash of desire gets them wild, even before they enter the apartment.
Post the 'quarrel' scene, we often see how the leads make up in dramatic love tangles in the car.
Needless to say, we're getting conditioned to this pattern.
A movie scene about a couple who's having mindful sex will look boring on screen.
This is exactly why in sex therapy we struggle with the myth of spontaneous sex.
One of the main reasons why spontaneity is overrated is because of the 'pop culture dictatorship'.
The other one is the lack of pressure to perform while having impulsive sex.
Often spontaneous sex means no expectations, hence no performance anxiety.
For some reason, it's also drilled into our heads that spontaneous means really passionate.
When I hear my clients complain about 'sex not being spontaneous anymore', often it's about the need of feeling wanted.
They want to feel desired.
They want to see that someone wants them so much that she/he can't resist themselves.
They want their partner's boldness and courage to express emotions.
This urge for passion is actually the urge for love, surrender, attention, born out of the need to be 'in control'.
And, for some passion occurs only when they do something 'bad', something which nobody else wants them to do.
If someone else wants them to do it too, they can't say if it's their need or someone else's.
This is a problem with autonomy and boundaries - solvable within the four walls of therapy and coaching.
And a separate topic to tackle.
Back to busting the myth between Planned and spontaneous sex, Planned sex is premeditated.
Partners are prepared for it.
They have a fantasy about what they'll do together. They also know when it's going to happen.
The partners have time to imagine it, then serve each other what they like best and check if they want something new.
But what's important to note is that they don't get attached to their fantasy scenarios.
They are aware of the unpredictable reality and that their scheduled sex night might finish with 'Netflix & chill' literally.
The space for 'NO' makes the situation risky.
Sex never happens out of the blue.
It's always a consequence of fantasy, even if it's impulsive.
And impulsive doesn't necessarily mean good.
Fantasy fuels desire.
Committed sex is premeditated and mindful. You need time create time and erotic space - first in your mind, then in your bedroom.
Planning and scheduling sex requires seduction as well.
It's not like you meet in the bedroom and undress while you talk about chores.
"Hey! It's been 3 weeks. Shall we?"
To make things romantic and hot, it has to have a sexy context.
This is why the invitation to the bedroom is such an important part of foreplay.
It can be a gaze, it can be a touch, it can be a compliment, it can be a playfight, it can be all of this together and something completely different - anything that suits you as a couple and creates a sexy ritual that helps you transform from your ordinary selves to erotic selves.
I asked my friends who describe their sex life as amazing after years of being together as to what do they think about the spontaneous vs. planned sex dilemma.
Angela (34), mother of two, and has been in a relationship for the past six years says -
What does it mean to be spontaneous? For me, spontaneous happens when we're getting it on somewhere outdoor, hiding in some public space. But it's rarely for sex per se, it's more for fun.
What we do for sex is always planned because sex for us is more about exploration, development, attention, and connection. Of course, it happens sometimes that we just release tension with a 'quickie'. But it's like comparing a three-course meal at an upscale place with fast food. No doubt you can enjoy both but it's not recommended to eat only fast food.
To that order, having only compulsory 'spontaneous quickie' is sad as well. You need a good a balance of both. That's my opinion.
Martin (32), who works as a financial risk controller in Swedish bank, and has been in a relationship for four years now, answered my question with a story about his everyday observations -
I know that my partner isn't in the mood when she puts on sweatpants and my t-shirt to bed. And at times I take it as a challenge to see if I can her in the mood. My ex-girlfriend took my initiating as a pressure. She got angry at me like I was making a mistake by showing my desire for her.
With Eli, my current partner I feel that she appreciates me initiating but she would never have sex with me only to please me. In most situations, I manage to turn her on eventually and the 'sweatpants state of mind' is gone. If not, we schedule sex for another day.
We don't just plan everyday chores, we also plan activities which we're looking forward to.
When you want to prepare a fancy dinner for your partner, which you assume they will like, you need to know the recipe first.
You need to know what to buy, how to prep the ingredients, the method, and you can't wait for your partner to taste it.
The same can be said for planning sex.
Imagination fuels desire.
And it can turn you on, energize you!
So, which side of are you on?
Planned or spontaneous sex? Or maybe a little bit of both?
Let us know in the comments.