Sexual vulnerability in the context of a loving relationship, means leaving aside the ‘games’ we play to protect ourselves, to get love, to perform, or perhaps look a certain way to our partner. It does not mean leaving you prey to abuse of any sort.
Bringing these two words together –sex and true, authentic vulnerability –may seem scary. It’s a bridge that many don’t want to cross. Yet its richness is so rewarding.
So what does it truly mean to be sexually vulnerable in a relationship?
It means becoming aware of all the strategies
we use to get love or to manipulate another or ourselves to get the things we want for pleasure, safety, security, love or power –or to stop ourselves from being hurt –yet again.
Sexual vulnerability cannot exist without emotional vulnerability. They are two sides of the same coin. Resisting vulnerability creates a protective armour. Opening to vulnerability means taking the armour off and laying down your weapons, your defence mechanisms, your pride, and your ego, for love.
It means being willing to meet all the feelings of resistance when we are making love or moving towards making love.
It means not just going through the ‘act’ of lovemaking but fully participating with your heart, and being willing to meet any uncomfortable feelings that may arise, including pleasure!
It also means speaking what’s true and real for you in any given time, even when you fear your lover will not be happy.
It means to STOP the talking where there has been too much talking, causing a lack of presence.
It means being willing to allow the body to soften
Once the body softens and relaxes, so much opening is possible. Sometimes tears flow–a release of the held-in tension. Healing of your past is possible. A whole chapter of your sexual past can then slide away.
It means letting go of agendas and goals and simply opening to the moment as it unfolds.
It means keeping to an agreement to making time for love.
Allowing yourself to be sexually/emotionally vulnerable to a trusted lover means that you are willing to be present in YOUR body –to be present to the first most important person in your life –YOU. In fact, while it may seem that one is putting up a protective barrier to the other, the truth is that you are actually caging your own heart, to yourself, to life… and hey, that’s painful isn’t it–when love can’t get in and love can’t get out.
The sweetest, most beautiful thing in life that makes it worth living is when you can feel love in your heart, and in every cell of your being, and there are no barriers to love.
Being sexually vulnerable means choosing love and being willing to meet these inner barriers with love. And Rumi said it all those centuries ago: ‘Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.’
Janet McGeever is presenting The Making Love Retreat in Montville, Qld., in September, with her partner, Gene Thompson.
A speaker and mentor in women’s spirituality, sexuality and relationships, Janet is Australian presenter of The Making Love Retreat, with her partner Gene, supporting couples to create a deeper connection and harmonise their sexual relationship.
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