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John W. Travis, M.D. & Regina Sara Ryan
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Sex and Fulfillment

As a culture we are preoccupied with sex. Sex sells! Check the latest offerings on the local magazine rack, take a critical look at advertisements, examine the contents of the average TV serial - they all underline the preoccupation with sex. This exaggerated importance assigned to sex has led us in search of the multiple orgasm, the simultaneous orgasm, the twenty-minute orgasm, and the G-spot to prove our potency. It has contributed to the pressures and tensions that many experience in connection with sex. It has led us to develop unrealistic expectations of how great sex is supposed to be, how it will solve all our problems, and how there is one perfect person out there for each of us, a soulmate, waiting to be found. When sex is defined in terms of flawless physical bodies and perfectly compatible relationships, in terms of power and prestige and ecstasy, we are bound to feel inadequate when our own experiences fall short.

In her insightful book, The New Celibacy, author Gabrielle Brown asserts, unapologetically:

. . . we've been taught that sex is the road to personal fulfillment. This is one of the most destructive myths about sex - that there is such a thing as permanent fulfillment on the sexual level. . . . No matter how great an orgasm one has or how great an orgasm one's partner has, sex does not bring fulfillment. And if something more deep and permanent is desired in the expression of love and one does not even experience it, one may feel unfulfilled, even saddened by the sexual act. . . . Many people, believing that sex is the only way to become fulfilled, spend years searching for lasting happiness in sexual encounters. Such is the loneliness of the sexual seeker who continues to search for personal liberation in a series of static encounters. In this fixed pattern of behavior, there is always a feeling of futility, of going nowhere. . . .

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