As a young woman I used to mistake sex for love. I mistook sexual interest for interest in me, as a whole person. What I craved was deep connection and loving, which is something that sex can offer us if it is with someone who also wishes to connect in this way.
BUT sometimes people just want some good old sex with no strings attached, and that’s okay as long as you don’t confuse the two.
In my need for understanding and intimacy, sex was how I gained gratification. It was something external to myself that I could test myself against. That I was worthy, loveable, desired. I used sex to bypass expressing what I truly wanted and to create fake intimacy and understanding, ever so fleeting.
And it wasn’t only sex that I used, if I was feeling an uncomfortable emotion, like loneliness or boredom I would message someone of the opposite sex. This act was to distract myself from the feeling and to replace it with gratification from this person, dopamine over defeat. If that wasn’t an option, I’d go on Tinder.
Deep down I think I always knew that this was an unhealthy relationship to love and sex, I could feel it in my body after having sex for all the wrong reasons. I could feel it when I was upset by not getting the response I wanted from the messages. I could feel it in my being as the void continually expanded.
I thought about diving into the many reasons as to why this behavioural pattern was showing up in my life but instead I am going to tell you about how I shifted it. Best of all, its actually pretty simple.
What all of this was showing me was a lack of understanding and intimacy with myself, which is why I was seeking it out in others. I decided to take the time to get to know myself on a deeper level, to listen to my needs and honour them. To check in with my heart, mind and pussy before sexually connecting with someone, making sure it was for the right reasons. I learnt to lean into the discomfort of the not so pleasant emotions, to let them fill me up and wash over me. In doing this learning how to mother myself, support myself and love myself. All the parts of me are what made me so beautifully me and I began to see worthiness in myself. I desired spending time with myself by doing kind things for myself, pleasuring myself and gratifying myself. It was such an amazing unravelling to find strength in my vulnerability.
The crazy thing is, now I that I have let go of my limiting beliefs around intimacy and love these two things have been showing up in my life in the most miraculous ways. Not only within myself but in my external world with the amazing people who surround me.
Of course all of this didn’t happen over night, that whole Rome wasn’t built in a day thing. I consciously chose to be single and not engaging with anyone sexually to really experience myself. It was hard at times. I cried myself to sleep A LOT, I hated myself, I felt sorry for myself, I ate heaps of cake, I even contemplated to myself that maybe I would be alone for the rest of my life. Things got pretty dark, but as the old saying goes, it's always darkest before the dawn.