1) Loving relationships, but no sex, or
(2) All the sex you wanted, of the anonymous, faceless, zipless variety, but no loving relationships
Which is more important, love or sex?
I see this as a profound question.
I'm not sure how the average would answer that question. I have had friends, acquaintances and co-workers over the years who have answered the question in each of these ways. And in observing these people over the long run, it has invariably seemed to me that those who chose sex over loving relationships always came out on the short side of life's experiences.
Over the past few months I've been more and more open about the fact that I have cancer. There is nothing like cancer to screw up one's sex life. As one of my long time friends told me the other day, "I've never known a person more sexual than you." And I guess it is true. Sex has been a huge part of my life since my earliest memories. As a young boy it was shared with my friends. Sexual play bonded us into true friends. It was a natural part of being boys.
As I grew older, the sex with the guys continued; but my thoughts also began to turn to sex with girls. I was, as I've always been, very lucky. I met the girl who was to become my wife in the 6th grade. As we dated through the years, sex became more and more important in our lives. You might say we kind of grew into it together. I never will forget the first time we went all the way. It was a summer night in June. We were at the lake on which I had water skied for years. The stars were bright above the trees and the water reflected the moonlight. Everything we had defined as sex up till that time melted away and a new definition of sex took its place in our lives. That was almost 50 years ago, but I remember it as if it was yesterday. I remember how I felt as I took her home. I had never felt that way.
I also remember that I was scared shitless because I knew her mom and dad would be waiting for us to get her home. I was afraid they would see it on my face what I had just done with their daughter, and if for some reason they didn't see it on my face, I was sure they would smell the sweet smell of sex lingering around us. I don't know if they did or not. If they did, nothing was said and I managed to get out of there alive.
Over the years after our marriage, sex just got better and better. That first time, as romantic as it had been, came to the point that it held no comparison to sex as we had now come to define it. My wife loved sex as much as I and she never failed to find something new and exciting. We've had sex half way around the world and back and in the majority of the U.S. We've had sex by several lakes and in National Parks and on ships. We've had sex in the back yard and in the swimming pool. And practice really does make perfect.
As I came to understand my bisexuality, I found my first buddy and sex with him added a whole new dimension to the meaning of sex for me. As with my wife, as the years turned into a decade with him sex simply got better and better. There was nothing we wouldn't try and much we came to love including each other. But I always knew that for me sex didn't just have to be good, it had to be with both my wife and my buddy. I was never afraid to say I loved them. I was well aware I did love them both though in different ways. My wife was my life, my partner. My buddy was my bond, my buddy, the one person in the world I could say anything to without fear of saying something I shouldn't. Sex with my first buddy came to an end a few years ago. It was time. We were moving in different directions sexually, he to living openly as a finally self identified homosexual man, me to continue living as a happily married bisexual man. But what has not changed is the love for him and the bond between us. I love him still and feel so blessed to have him still as a constant part of my life.
Today, as I said above, my cancer has really screwed up my sex life. It will never be what it was ever again. But the love of my wife and my buddy remains. I often feel a burden to my wife now, especially on the bad days. But she never seems to see it that way. She seems to take joy in caring for me and supporting me. My buddy is always there for me too, but in a very different way. Where my wife cuddles me and protects me, my buddy keeps reminding me in the crudest way possible that I have to keep my ass in gear and not whine about or give into my problems. He tells me I have to have years left simply because he's not willing to give me up even if I am a crotchety and worthless old man (he's 12 years my junior).
There is no sex with either of them anymore really and for sure not in the way we use to define it, but the love lingers. I'll go to my grave loving them and I think they will both be there as I go still loving me too. They, along with a number of great friends I've found and sometimes met along the way give me great comfort in what is surely the winter of my life. Love abides, sex does not.
This link is to one of my all time favorite songs. It speaks of a philosophy that is absolutely essential to a happy life. Life is never perfect. Life is always difficult. But when you get a chance to sit it out or dance, I hope you'll choose to dance. Click here and listen carefully to the words of the song.