A friendquaintance recently propositioned me for casual sex. He and I hadn’t spoken in a long time and had a few phone calls to sorta-kinda reconnect, where we discussed our mutual physical attraction toward each other that had built over the past few years. However, I was explicit in the reasons that I would not be consenting to sex, first and foremost for the damage that it would cause to one of my other, much closer friendships, but also because I did not think he and I were sexually compatible. We’re both very dominant in bed, and I foresaw an obnoxious power struggle that was worth neither my energy nor traumatizing my aforereferenced friendship.
“So, wait. You think I’m hot, and I think you’re hot. Why is that not enough?”
My answer confused him. Although he agreed with my two reservations, he couldn’t wrap his head around the idea that mutual attraction is not the only factor which I use to decide if I want to engage in sexual activity with someone. For him, mutual attraction is plenty sufficient for both casual sexual encounters as well as longer-term relationships. While he does appreciate other compatibilities, too, that’s his only vital factor.
I don’t think that way. I am infinitely more likely to want to hook-up with friends than with strangers because I prioritize a high degree of trust with who I bed. At the same time, I also take an interest in not harming the friendships I already value.
Although I took a more opportunistic approach to sexual encounters in my youth and began to acquire a sour reputation among the women of my friend group for dating a few of their ex-boyfriends, those friendships were unfulfilling, superficial, and worth surrendering for what I learned about dating, in general.
I’ve also received flak for admitting to having crushes on controversial friends during times when they were at strife with other friends. I sympathize with my friends’ annoyances, but I also think it’s silly to waste time stressing about an attraction to anyone (or anything).
That sentiment suits how I feel about this current situation, as well. Yes, there’s a mutual attraction; yes, it’s fun to enjoy the fantasy of what sexual activity could transact; and yes, biology does have an influence. However, we are civilized sexual agents, and in this case, I’m actively choosing to ignore my attraction rather than pursue it.
Our brains and bodies decide attraction largely on their own. Don’t fight it; just don’t act on the ones which make you uncomfortable.
… and that’s not to say that sexual adventurousness is a bad thing. My point is to examine the reasons why a certain activity makes you uncomfortable and decide if those reasons validate your hesitation, or if the activity might be worth pursuing anyway, just in a safer, more heavily-controlled setting.