On Christmas Eve I got the chance to get together with an old friend, also an ex-Witness, who was visiting from New York. His life has been something of a hedonic treadmill and only recently has gotten off of it to find, as I like to call him, the Sensitive New Age Jesus. Well, anyway, we got on the subject of sex and relationships. He mentioned to me that a girl, who is a friend but not a "girl-friend", has made it known to him that she would like to lose her virginity and was wondering if he would like to assist her acheive this goal.
Perhaps it's the whole "Jesus" thing, but my friend is up in arms about this. He has tried to reason with her that it would be just straight sex and nothing more and that she surely wants it to be "special", meaning with someone that she "loves." I protested to him that this is not a good idea. I feel it's better to lose one's virginity -- and experience sex play for awhile -- outside of any type of commitment.
But, I ask, Could there not be some middle-ground between an "empty lustful" sex experience (as one might have with a prostitute) and a deeply committed, "special" sex relationship with someone you "love"? (do notice my quotation marks -- they are there for a reason)
I believe that the concept of "love" is far more complex than most people imagine. Foolishly people place "Love" on some Platonic mountain, believing that one "love" is superior to all others. The sexes, but most especially women, it seems, wait for "That Special Someone" to come along with which they will live happily ever after. It's almost as if people engage in black-and-white thinking in this matter. Either you are "in love" or not. Any sex outside of "love" is automatically inferior and is denigrated as "just" lust. I must believe this is a false dichotomy.
More and more I think humans are naturally polyamorous -- and monogomous. We want the best of both worlds -- the pleasures of many-loves and the security of One. But, by this simple fact, polyamory wins out. If you are paradoxically an absolutist and a relativist, the relativist subsumes the absolutism by neccessity. One can envelope the other.
Humans seem to reject the facticity of life and their biology. We live in a large world where one is capable of loving different people, in varying degrees, for different reasons and in different settings. I had a girlfriend once that I said I "loved" although I never, ever would want to have a committed relationship with her. I loved her for "her" in the historical moment we found ourselves in at the time. Some might have called it pure "lust" but there was an element of love in it. I loved the way she looked, her humor, even her cry-baby whineiness at times. I have loved others too.
So, I believe there are different "types" of love, and it is impossible to place one "love" as superior to another. They're just different, that's all. Just as my "love" for the music of Miles Davis is differerent and cannot be compared with my "love" for baseball, so it is with men and women. Instead of creating some sort of absolutistic dogma about love and sex, why not recognize the differences, enjoy them and fulfill them?
My advice to my friend was to enjoy the "specialness" of the moment with the virgin and to make it known that, although the "love" they will enjoy will not be Absolute and Special in some sort of metaphysical sense, but to revel in the special love-lust-moment they can share together.