We pee in the woods, drink beer, swim naked and then later tell the absolute truth about ourselves. We can take the bags off our heads and show that we’re no different than the guy sitting in the same glow of a smokey camp fire. We wonder if any one else is getting sex, if they have the same sexual thoughts, the same sexual desires, the same fantasies.
The most comforting words I ever heard, “Dude, don’t worry. Every son-of-a-bitch does it…”
Sure, I already think I’m a freak, and now you tell me this! Where was the circle of comfort before all this? Where were the guys, the family, the friends that let down their guard and tell you how it is to be a sexual guy?
Let’s not kid ourselves. We think that we’re supposed to just naturally know all about sex. Most of us somehow stumble onto knowing how to orgasm, but beyond that, how to negotiate a sexual journey through life with all of it’s gender and attraction issues, how to relate sexually to others of the same or opposite sex, and least of all — how to become a lover — remains a mystery for a lot of guys to their last breath.
“So, how’s your sex life going these days? Getting any?”
“Ahh, geeze, thanks, I’m good.”
OK, maybe that’s not the way to broach the subject of a previously benign conversational repertoire consisting mainly of sports scores and fuel economy. Perhaps bring up an article you read, a film you saw or do something novel and be honest about your own relationships. Ask for insight. You never know. Your friend might be waiting for that conversation himself.
No doubt, conversation about sexuality treads on risky terrain, but once you begin to feel safe, you build a trusting community that lifts the pall of secrecy over male sexuality. It’s better for all of us. It’s better for our society’s sexual health.
Throw down the gauntlet and see if you don’t stand shocked that most of the guys with whom you previously danced around the bone-deep issues of sexuality actually walk the same journey as you. You’re just at different stations along the way.
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