Sex: Relationships, Gender Roles, and Physical Intimacy

“Do you like it?” What is the appropriate response to that question? We are constantly testing the people we are involved with romantically. Whether it’s in heterosexual relationships, homosexual relationship, or polyamorous relationships, every one can relate to the joys and conflicts that come with taking someone as your partner, even if only for a short while.

This month we are looking to explore the fabric of relationships at different levels. It could be dating or marriage, how have our concepts of being with a person changed as we have developed as people, and what direction are we going. Seemingly, a lot of behaviors are viewed as acceptable, especially in a place like Los Angeles, where there are so many kinds of people. But are we quietly judging while we pretend that somethings bother us. How much compromise is acceptable to keep a thing going, and for how long? ¬†What exactly are our “deal breakers” when it comes to relationships? Romantic interactions can completely change the context of the person we are. The most confident men, can get choked up talking to a pretty girl. A woman, could be aggressive when dating women and reserved when dating men if she is bi-sexual.

What does it even mean to be “bi-sexual” none of us really like labels but they certainly help clarify things. The side effect though, is a simplification, of whoever we are trying to classify. So we will look at the LGBT spectrum and try and identify where people feel they fall and what criteria they are using to make this determination. We must also look at what we see the responsibilities of each gender are perceived to be in relationships. Do our expectations of men in heterosexual relationships change when they are in homosexual relationships? We must take note of the social behaviors we reinforce and how they may conflict with our natural disposition.

Men and women and physiologically different and that can not disputed. There is so much data circulating, and so few of us are experts it is valuable to dissect how we’ve formed our consensus on gender roles, and how they can be changed. There is a clear separation from the gender roles expressed in nature and the ones we fulfill in our culture. And the social implications of our natural gender roles tend to cause polarizing debate because of the personal nature of the topics at hand.

Finally, we want to dig into physical intimacy, it is such a contagious topic it can not be ignored in the relationship discussion. As we have become generally more accepting of relationship types, have we also become more accepting of public expression of those relationships. What is the acceptable line for public displays of affection? How much should we sensor our selves for the sake of others, and are the rules different for different types of couples?

This may prove to be one of the more interesting months as there is so much to cover and so much content we are passionate about. Not only passionate in our minds, but in our hearts as well. I hope you enjoy the discourse.

-Maceo Paisley-