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Pleasure, Release, and Connection

77 women and 246 men have answered

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  • 73% of women and 61% of men listed connection as the most important.
  • 7% of women and 11% of men listed connection as the least important.
  • 18% of women and 23% of men listed pleasure as the most important.
  • 12% of women and 19% of men listed pleasure as the least important.
  • 9% of men and 4% of women listed release as the most important.
  • 76% of women and 63% of men listed release as the least important.

Female Comments:

  • I am a very attractive woman who struggled for years before marriage with self worth and using sex and attention from men for validation. My husband refuses to touch me sexually or non-sexually. I beg him to understand that I love him and that being with him is the natural conclusion to an emotional connection. Lately, men have been trying to chat me up and while I find it flattering, I flee. My marriage comes first, but it is increasingly hard because the bond is breaking the longer we go without actually engaging in a married way. It is heartbreaking.
  • The connection is by far most important to me. Without that, sex has MUCH less appeal. And I say this as someone who after many decades of marriage enjoys almost daily (sometimes twice daily) sex with my husband. When we went thru a spell without a good connection, I really felt like I could “take it or leave it”.
  • It’s varies and can be any combo of the above at different times of the month.
  • The connection is most important for me but the release and pleasure are often inseparable, though not always. The pleasure can sometimes cease to be pleasure if there is no release. I chose release last but I don’t want that to mean it isn’t important; the pleasure trumps release for me because I personally don’t need an orgasm every time to feel that connection and pleasure, but I’d really prefer to have that release too. It is the only optional thing (mostly only in the case of a quickie) and that is why I list it last. My husband and I seek to make ever encounter pleasurable, and it is that pleasure that makes both the connection and release possible, so these are nearly impossible to rank because we believe ALL are necessary for a fabulous encounter. I presume my hubby will list release ahead of pleasure because it ceases to be pleasure if there is no release, ha.
  • It’s funny, when something is taken away, you realize how important it actually was. Before my husband was dealing with low T and poor erection quality, I would have rated “connection” as #1, but now I realize, if I have no pleasure, I feel a loss in connection. It is a very discouraging thing.
  • I’d love it if my husband wanted sex as often as I do. I enjoy the connection, and it makes me feel so much closer to him. His needs do not seem to be as great as mine. It saddens me to the point that when we do connect, it’s exhausting because I have wasted so many days fretting about why we are not connecting.
  • I can’t choose. I went back and forth for a while, but I can’t choose. Pleasure without release isn’t entirely pleasurable…it can be torturous. Release without connection is like masturbating or prostitution. Release doesn’t happen without pleasure, and it isn’t pleasurable if we aren’t connected.
  • I am envious of men’s greater ease in climaxing than women’s. However it is not conducive to love and intimacy to be envious, so I am praying about and working on this.
  • Connection is by far more important to me. Without going too far into detail, I have a medical condition that I share with less than 1% of women. Vaginal sex is extremely painful. Kids in the future are not a high possibility. Two years into my marriage gave us far too many medical bills and a strained relationship. Living with just oral and hand pleasure {for both of us} was like dining on only appetizers. It took me time to get out of my head and relax, but once I did we connected with anal sex. There are many differences between vaginal and anal sex which I will not get into, but until there is a cure it is by far the best way for us to both connect intimately and physically in a married sexual union. It isn’t physically as pleasurable as I am told vaginal sex is for other women as my clitoris is not naturally always in a position to be stimulated, but I still get releases from either manual or oral stimulation and there are numerous positions for us to vary things up with. I enjoy the release and I do get pleasure out of the sexual intercourse that we do partake in, but for me the connection is absolutely the highlight. In our 5th year now with minimal progress medically and major progress in us as a couple. {Side rant: it is both amazing and frustrating to me how many people judge and condemn us one minute for “sinful acts”, then find out about my medical history and immediately sympathize with us and encourage us in our relationship. No one has continue to tell us that it’s “sinful” to our face. However, that attitude seems to me to be hypocrisy. It’s either a sin or it isn’t! There is no exceptions to sin for people with medical issues! Obviously, I no longer believe it is a sin as I have not found it in my Bible but have found plenty of other good marriage advice instead! OK. Enough ranting. : ) }
  • Even though I spend a lot of time with my husband, I tell him that “I miss him”, even when he’s sitting right next to me. If it’s been a rough week or just a little too long for me since we’ve been intimate, I value that bond that sex brings. I need to feel that oneness and connection with him often.
  • Being Desired ranks same.
  • I wish my husband & I would have a closer intimacy connection. I feel like our intimacy is all about sex & nothing else.
  • For me, I don’t get the full “connection” if the “release” doesn’t happen, so they’re equally important to me, but my goal is always the connection. Lately the release hasn’t been happening, so I’ve been feeling the lack of connection…quite frustrating for both of us.
  • I do understand the question, but it’s nearly impossible to choose one of those answers. They’re all very important, and sometimes depending on my mood, those priorities change. Example: If we’ve been teasing each other all day, release and pleasure are definitely the top priorities when we finally have sex, and we do our connecting in the afterglow. Other times making love is mostly about connection, with release and pleasure being farther down the list for that moment. I wouldn’t always want the priorities to be the same anyway. That would get boring.

Male Comments:

  • As a man that is hard to say, that I need a physical connection with my wife to feel safe. I feel like my emotions are unlocked, and can flow easier when my wife and I have connected sex. Something inside of me is unlocked and my guard is let down. I even get all mushy after sex sometimes. My wife can unlock my emotions with her physical touch. Even though sharing my emotions is hard (there seems to be a road block there). I still feel like I can unlock my wife’s physical touch, when I connect with her emotionally. I have been hurt emotionally, and my wife has been hurt physically. The enemy does not want use to connect. But there is healing for us both in that emotional and physical connection, I just know there is.
  • All three are basically of equal importance, but if I am completely honest with myself, the other two don’t really matter if there is no feeling of release associated with a climax.
  • They’re all good… Hard to have one without the other. But I enjoy connection at the end very much.
  • I know it should be first connection then pleasure and release last, but I put p, c, and release last b/c I’m still in the process of learning what is most important to my wife.
  • I enjoy pleasing my wife as much as I enjoy it.
  • This has changed as I have gotten older. Your survey doesn’t allow for that. When I was younger it was the first one, but their value to me was very close. If it had only been about release and pleasure then masturbation would have been satisfying, but it was not. And as I have gotten older the need for release isn’t almost overwhelming (hey, I am married to a beautiful woman), the pleasure is good, but not as good, but the connection is still very important.
  • It is hard to choose the order of these. They actually vary at times.
  • I find all of these to be equally important. They’re all such integral parts of the physical intimacy I have with my wife that I can’t possibly place any of them above the others.
  • Of the three, the connection lasts longer than the other two.
  • It is hard to say. My wife thinks it is only for the release not understanding my need to be close to her.
  • I chose pleasure as my first but I must clarify, I love pleasuring my wife. The sensations that arise from seeing her pleasured is as good as the release itself.
  • She sees sex for me as completely different, and I don’t think there is anyway to make her see the truth, if you asked her what climax was for me she would probably say Release, Pleasure, connection. And we have a pretty good sex life. 1-2 times a week for the 9 years we’ve been married.
  • All are important, but the order of importance varies, depending on several factors.
  • It’s impossible for me to choose because it is different at different times. If my wife and I haven’t had quality time together for a long time it’s about connection. If we’ve had time together but not intimate times it can be about release. If we’ve had time together and recent intimacy it becomes about pleasure and teasing.
  • I’m a man and it’s all about connection. For my wife it’s just something pleasurable we do like playing tennis. Made for a tough marriage.
  • The most important one changes depending on the situation and the circumstances and need at that time.
  • Tough one All are important.
  • It is not the same each time. The needs vary, the available time varies, the urgency is especially variable.
  • Being together and pleasurably touching one another is significantly more important than release. If my dear wife has been intimate and loving with me but release is not possible for some reason, I’m still happy with the experience and opportunity to be together.
  • All equally important. Need all 3 for the greatest sex, although it’s good and better with any 1 or 2 of them.
  • It’s clearly the connection is the first and most important. The physical pull gives strong reason to try and overcome all the obstacles that exist. In the end, the three items are really very interconnected.
  • I agree. For me, the order is the first one above in your survey. We do everything else together and think alike and have the same church background. The only difference is our Family of Origin situation. I am an only child and she is the oldest of four.
  • It varies a lot depending on what’s been going on. I almost chose the last option, as I start to prioritize whichever thing(s) I haven’t experienced lately. We can have frequent loving routine sex, satisfying release and connection, but leaving me desiring something novel and pleasurable.
  • Depends on the day and other factors in our relationship/lives.
  • Release is definitely top, but it is hard to choose between pleasure and connection.
  • As I mature I am more aware of the significance of connection. Sometimes all three seem equalling strong sometimes one is predominant, but the other two are still important. Sometimes it is only after the orgasm that I become more aware.
  • I have to say that the truth is that this is variable. The longer we go without sex, the more pressing the need for release is. But if we are making love with any reasonable level of frequency, then connection is the number one priority. I rate release before pleasure because I am including the release of stress in that, not just sexual tension.
  • I love sex, especially orgasm, but it really all seems shallow without the close, personal connection I share with my wife. I can masturbate any time I want in order to get release, but the closeness I have with my wife when we have sex or engage in manual stimulation is the best.
  • All about equal importance. Sometimes release is more important, if it’s been a while, sometimes the other two.
  • It’s the pleasure of it that really gets me going and into it from which the connection really occurs. If we are not BOTH into it then there isn’t a connection. The release does need to happen sometimes, but not always. An example, a few weeks ago the wife greeted me as I got out of the shower. “I’ve got 3 minutes to [orally pleasure you]” and she kissed her way down. Excitement and pleasure! Her alarm went off, she stood up and we hugged and kissed for another minute as we both felt amazing connection. There was no release then, but it was an amazing experience. The release, at least for me, is mostly that physical build up which needs to happen after a while. It isn’t a driving force for sex.
  • My rankings have changed over the last two years as I’ve addressed a porn addiction and really worked hard at learning what true intimacy is. Yes… connection is now my first.
  • After this many years of marriage it is feels so good to be connected to one another.
  • All of the above! Unfortunately as time passes I settle for 2 of 3. She acts in the opposite way, none of the above!
  • Pleasure is getting better and better after more than 5 years of foreskin restoration. Not to my goal yet but things are much better than before starting.
  • The three are so intertwined, they can be separated analytically but not in actual experience. Heck, who’s analyzing then anyway?
  • Would love to put connection first, but it feels like my wife sees sex as mostly just a duty rather than for love, connection or pleasure so it makes it hard to fully invest in the connection aspect when it feels so one-sided.

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