Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Straight sex

I first want to just extend a welcome to all who came here through a Google search. You may not find what you're looking for, and I won't be offended if you leave. Feel free to come back and bring your friends when I do my post on penis enlargement.

I've been meaning for some time to post about sex, but I haven't known exactly how to do it. Understandably, there is some curiosity among single mohos about how a gay guy can possibly father children. Granting it's possible in the strictest clinical sense, is it something that robs a guy of all dignity to have sex with someone to whom he is not fully sexually attracted? How about with someone to whom he is not the least sexually attracted?

Well, the only way I could get myself to write this post at all was to speak only in vague terms about where we've been in our sexual relationship. I don't want to cheapen what I consider to be sacred and legitimate intimacy by sharing too much, but I do want people who are interested to have an idea of what it's like to be gay, Mormon, married... and sexual.

There's no question we were off to a slow start. I never kissed my wife before we were engaged, and even then I found that I enjoyed it less than when I had kissed a guy. This was not surprising to me though--after all, I'm gay. What surprised me was that I enjoyed it increasingly. I loosened up, thought about her rather than me, and things got better.

On our wedding night we had a family prayer right away. It seemed like an appropriate way to start a family, and without consciously deciding to, I turned it into an invocation for our sex. I asked God to bless us that the sex would be "hot and gratifying". Unfortunately, there were complications. [Shocker.] I even saw a doctor about this (who was, looking back, a complete moron). Viagra doesn't really help a healthy gay guy have straight sex, FYI.

Over the first couple years of our marriage, we tried different things to make sex more enjoyable--to facilitate things. We tried getting lots of books from the library about sex (I liked the pictures... hee hee), we tried toys (dice, edible whatevers, etc.), we tried lots of positions and circumstances. We conceded that our situation wasn't one well documented, and we were going to have to do some primary research of our own to figure out what would work.

And eventually the orgasms came.

I'd like to be able to say here that my wife turns me on as much as any guy ever could. But alas, it isn't so. And besides, what would I have to blog about if I were already at that point? I'll get there some day. The sex is enjoyable despite that, though, because we've both learned that most of the fun is in giving to the other person. I want her to feel every good thing possible, and it turns out that I do get turned on when she's turned on, despite it all.

For now we still have to be unconventional sexual partners--working out the kinks because we love each other and we're best friends. We don't have to have sex, certainly. And I think a lot of mixed orientation marriages end up being a version of celibacy. But despite the unusual amount of work that goes into gearing up for and making love, I think it's important. For one thing, people that have more sex are generally happier and more successful ;-). For another, they're healthier. Maybe Scot can whip through the primary research and provide a bibliography for that, but I'm pretty sure that's an evidence based statement (notwithstanding the screaming problems with the causal connection I'm implying).

Thankfully, our sexual encounters aren't like that creepy scene in Angels In America. I'm sure there are gay Mormons who might approximate that... but with some communication, open-mindedness, honesty, and commitment, sex has been "hot and gratifying" on more than a few occasions since my invocation. Even when the sex isn't quite as hot... there's always the cuddling. Mmmm... I'm gonna go lie down with my favorite person.

19 comments:

drex said...

That's actually a very helpful entry. Good on you for sharing - I for one appreciate it, and hope things can work out so well for me someday.

Beck said...

I have thought of writing such a post, but never figured out the words to say it. Needless to say, you have eloquently articulated my feelings and personal experience (except for the invocation thing - though nice touch :))as another seasoned married gay mormon man, in a way I never could.

Very nicely said...

Scot said...

“Maybe Scot can whip through the primary research and provide a bibliography for that”

I can’t help but feel vaguely uncomfortable being mentioned in this post, even in regards to something as anti-sexy as bibliographies. :-)

"For one thing, people that have more sex are generally happier and more successful ;-). For another, they're healthier. "

By the papers on this I’ve seen, I remember a similar correlation being there, but the causation was not pinned down. You know: do happier healthier successful people have more sex or does having sex make you happier healthier and successful? I do believe though the case for it being a deterrent for testicular cancer is there; IIRC, though, that didn’t require sex, in full, if you know what I mean. I’ll look for the papers again, even though you’re making fun of my love of bibliographies :-).

Mormon Enigma said...

As yet another married MoHo, I agree with Beck that you have eloquently articulated (in a way that only you can) what it's like for a gay man to be intimate with a woman.

Thankfully, our sexual encounters aren't like that creepy scene in Angels In America

Now you piqued my curiosity. I haven't seen this movie, so what is the creepy scene you refer to?

-L- said...

So, I have barely managed not to watch Latter-days, and Queer as Folk, and the several other gay films I always hear about because they are clearly pornographic for me. So, although I loved Angels in America (despite its offensive and pretty much pervasive ridicule of Mormonism) it has several nudy scenes that keep me from recommending it. One of those scenes was where the gay Mormon is having sex with his wife (she is psychologically tormented because of their vacant relationship, he is tormented because he's--you guessed it--gay and Mormon), and they show them in bed with him rhythmically making things happen but it's all mechanical and they both clearly hate it.

Scot, whether causal or not, I want as much sex as I can get and I'm a believer that it will be good for me and good for our relationship as long as it isn't as described above!

playasinmar said...

Since nobody here seems to want to play the part of Immature Guy Who Giggles at Sex…

“…we tried toys (dice, etc.)…”

Sounds like a great game of Dungeons & Dragons™! Or Monopoly.

“On our wedding night we had a family prayer right away,”

This is starting to sound like every letter to Penthouse/The Ensign.

Scot said...

This topic always leaves me scratching my head, for the euphemisms I guess; I’m not sure why you typed that in response, L. By my understanding of “casual” sex, though, I hope you do not want to get all you can get there :-).

I’m wondering now how you work this in with identifying as being gay (Didn’t you say 6 on the Kinsey scale?). I see Kinsey described his scale as “based on the relative amounts of heterosexual and homosexual experience or response in each history.” If you’re attracted to experiencing sex with the opposite sex, “respond,” or are attracted to the opposite sex, would you not call that a heterosexual characteristic?

Personally, I think the Kinsey scale it too simplistic and, by the above, pointless, as orientation can both have components of repulsion from and attraction towards some groups, without any “history”. One could have 100% attraction to one group and no or little repulsion from another, or be totally attracted one way and practically sickened by the other (some straight men can’t even talk about gay sex without getting nauseated :-)). While they may both call themselves gay or Kinsey 6 or straight, their lives and motivations may still be very different.

playasinmar said...

Whatever the Kinsey scale was isn't it today used as a tool of self-measurement? "Where do my attractions palce me?"

SG said...

-L-, You and I are very much alike. When I first kissed my wife, it was she who did the initiating, but I felt something I wasn't expecting to feel - it aroused me a little. While we never had any make-out sessions like I suspect hetero couples have, I really did enjoy kissing her. Within a few weeks of that encounter, we were talking about getting engaged.

On our wedding night, we, too, knelt at the foot of the bed and thanked Heavenly Father for each other and asked Him to help us in our marriage, and, specifically, for our bodies to work the way they were supposed to that night. To be candid, I was scared to death. I knew much more than I should have about gay sex but was terrified about straight sex and whether or not I could even do it, and my wife knew little more than what was supposed to go where.

While it was easy for me to have orgasms with my wife, I knew she was getting little out of it except the emotional closeness. I regret that I found myself thinking about other guys I knew, imagining them having sex with their wives, or at least imagining them naked, while I was having sex with my wife, while I was with my wife. I've written about that in a recent post on my blog.

Over the years we've learned how to be more responsive to each other and to pleasure each other. Like you, -L-, I get very turned on by seeing and helping my wife to orgasm.

I very much doubt that our sex life is at all like most married couples. Because of our mixed orientation, we've had to make compromises and adjustments. For example, we tend to use our hands much more than I suspect other couples do. I doubt, however, that we are any less close because of our compromises. Because we've needed to talk and be open about such intimate aspects of ourselves, perhaps it's even helped us.

Scot said...

"Whatever the Kinsey scale was isn't it today used as a tool of self-measurement? "Where do my attractions palce me?""

Yeah, I think that's the more appropriate measure and I think that's what most mean today, but you never know. Vocabulary is a beast in this area :-).

playasinmar said...

Wow, I impressed the irrepressible Scot! And on L's blog, no less.

A winner is me!

-L- said...

Scot, don't read too much into my response. I just wanted to point out that I like sex and don't need an evidence based assessment of why I should (despite that I brought it up in the first place).

As for how gay I am, I consider myself to be solely attracted to men. My wife is an exception only because she's the only experience I've had (so many qualifiers and explanations to put on that...). The fact that I didn't respond to her without thinking of guys at first actually leads me to a conclusion I've never drawn before: I really have started changing my sexuality! Who knew? I still consider myself to be wholly gay in terms of attractions and wholly straight in terms of full sexual experience (again, the caveats omitted).

Scot said...

You crack me up, playasinmar. But if I weren’t repressible I’d have far less to say ;-).

And L, I think I get your drift.

SG said...

As for how gay I am, I consider myself to be solely attracted to men. My wife is an exception only because she's the only experience I've had (so many qualifiers and explanations to put on that...). The fact that I didn't respond to her without thinking of guys at first actually leads me to a conclusion I've never drawn before: I really have started changing my sexuality! Who knew? I still consider myself to be wholly gay in terms of attractions and wholly straight in terms of full sexual experience (again, the caveats omitted).

Once again, -L-, you're speaking for me. It's sorta spooky, but comforting that I'm not the only one who is in a marriage that is as weird as yours and mine both seem to be and are obviously working.

MoHoHawaii said...

I been on both sides of this... heterosexually married (with kids) and in a monogamous gay relationship of long duration.

My experience agrees with -L-'s as far as the hetsex part goes. It was workable; we had kids; it didn't gross anyone out; it wasn't a caricature of intimacy; sometimes it was even tender.

When I first had homosex, it was like being transported to another plane of existence. The syapses in my brain went into overdrive. It was electric. The experience was unbelievably potent. I cried afterwards from happiness. It was truly making love for the first time.

When people ask me how old I was when I first had sex, I always use the age of my first homosex. Then I tell them that prior to losing my virginity I was married and had several kids. :-)

This reminds me of the tasteless bumper sticker I once saw in Utah (forgive me in advance for this one):

Families seem like forever.

Just kidding on that one. I love my children dearly, and I know you guys are devoted family men. I still think it's a funny bumper sticker to see in the ward parking lot.

-L- said...

No doubt having sex the way we're wired is going to be better than otherwise. Absolutely no question. But, the larger issue isn't about what makes the best sex as much as what makes the best sex within society's rules, God's rules, or just reality's rules (all of which, I grant, may be seen as variable from person to person). Which reminds me of a patient I saw in urology who had a penile implant. I wondered how sex must be for someone who actually has to manually inflate a prosthesis in their penis before intercourse. I figured he wasn't complaining because it's all he had available to him.

He was paraplegic, so might have had sexual problems from his health issues his whole life. That thought reminded me of the power of comparisons and contextual sexual reinforcement. I'm very glad that I've never had the tear-jerking brand of gay sex you've described since it's entirely possible that I couldn't function sexually with my wife at all if I had already had gay sex. And I fear that some of the younger LDS guys who just want to experiment with being gay might be setting themselves up for a harder time trying to make things work afterward.

Given that you are happy and following the course you believe to be right, I'm glad you've had (and hopefully have continued to have) tear-jerking sexual satisfaction. :-)

But for those of us who can't meet the qualification of disbelieving Mormonism, straight sex is really a pretty good alternative.

MoHoHawaii said...

I think we're on the same page here. You describe a very reasonable, ethical approach for people who believe in the Church.

Here's something I think about: some of the reasons I got divorced had nothing to do with my being gay. My ex-wife and I were incompatible in the regular way of other unhappy, ill-matched couples. I often wonder what would have happened if I had married a more a more sympathetic, loving woman (like many in the MoHo blogosphere seemed to have done). Would I have ever taken the path I did? Or would I have stayed? That's a question I can't answer.

salad said...

I'll admit to feeling mildly awkward being the only female to comment on this, but I found your post to be quite insightful. I've wondered about the success of sex between mixed-orientation couples and what you've described sounds a lot better than the sex that a lot of heterosexual couples have on a regular basis.

Thanks for putting things so tastefully and yet candidly.

kittywaymo said...

L, I think you and your wife's sincerity and committment are incredible. I wish you continued happiness and joy. You do not have to have dramatic, tear-jerking homosexual sex and the related risks of a. aids b. various problems with anal tearing etc. c. lack of monogamous committment..and please gay folk, don't quote the one friend or one couple you know who've been together for 20 years...empirical evidence shows that when the looks go, the weight is put on or sickness comes, most gay partners are out the door to the next lover.

Male/Female relationship is not only sanctioned by God, but works physciologically, psychologically and sexually as well...(the anus is NOT a sexual organ, as my husband Dr. H always says...(he's an obgyn)...

nevertheless..L, you are a fine example of a true man..a man of God...who honors his priesthood and loves his wife and children...

love, kittywaymo (chem/pharmd student)