In a book called Come As You Are, Emily Nagowski shares that there are two types of desire; Spontaneous Desire and Responsive Desire What's popularised in movies and in our culture is spontaneous desire. A feeling of instant turn on when we see someone walk past who we fancy, Or feeling turned on and immediately ready for sexual intimacy with a romantic partner. Thank goodness for Emily and for her book. She let
s us know that there is another type of desire - responsive desire. This type of desire is actually really common but less well known. This is the type of desire that is context dependent and responsive to either things that support us to get in touch with our turn on or things that work to move us away and put the brakes on our turn on. Sometimes the context may appear to support turn on and openness to sexual intimacy, but the desire still may not be there, as some important factors may be missing such as; - needing to feel safe - needing to first feel relaxed - needing to have established an emotional connection I want to talk about this because I know how much shame can come with having the lesser known desire - responsive desire. Both types of desire are natural and healthy expressions of sexuality. What we can do to support each other is firstly get to know what type of desire we have - and then communicate this with a partner. Let them know what supports us to respond and tap into our turn. And let them know what might hold us back from our turn on. Hopefully with knowledge of what we like and what they like and communication with each other, we can reduce the impact of shame.