I Swore Off Sex for a Month
By Colleen Oakley
DAY 2: Dangling and denying
Today's exercise makes me focus on my relationship with sex, which at times I'd describe as abusive: I use sex. I think everybody does to some extent. But ever since I was 15 and realized that I had something men wanted, I've wielded the power sex gives me: I've dangled it, I've withheld it. With Fred, I use sex as a barometer for our relationship. If we go three or four days without it, I start to feel less emotionally connected to him.
That evening when we're out, Fred's more attentive than usual, and I suspect he's testing my detox resolve. It feels naughty. But the spell breaks when we get home and I have to deny him. Now I feel like a tease. I'm lonely even though he's right next to me.
DAY 3: Stuffing and divulging
I stuff my sexiest lingerie in the bottom of the drawer so Fred won't think I'm tempting him.
Then I talk to Kerner and admit Fred and I have been in a rut. I blame Fred for getting lazy about foreplay, even though I've asked for it. Kerner says the detox is working if you make a new observation every day, but figuring out I'm pissed off at my boyfriend doesn't feel like progress. Worse, I can't complain to Fred, because the detox is about self-discovery no help from your mate. If we weren't toxic before, I'm sure we're about to be now.
DAY 4: How abstinence works
We're making breakfast Saturday morning, and Fred starts kissing me and does that thing where he presses his body full against mine, as if he can't get close enough. Later, he asks me to come to the bedroom to help him pick out a shirt. I fall for it. He pounces on me. I resist for about 15 minutes. OK...maybe five.
DAY 5: I'll take denial, thanks
It's morning and we slept naked, so...we do it again. Seriously, we already broke the diet, so what's one more piece of cake? Besides, it was amazing: attentive, varied, hungry.
Later, I wonder whether I wanted to break the detox because I needed to feel loved by Fred. Is sex the only thing holding us together? The detox is beginning to scare me. I'm concerned it's going to shake stuff loose that I didn't know was there.