This article appeared on an online magazine called "BettyConfidential.com"
The mysterious art of making love without climaxing.
(by Natalie Bencivenga) The idea of having sex without crossing the finish line may seem to some like a waste of time. Like Samantha from Sex and the City famously once said, “When I RSVP to a party, I make it my business to come.”
This androcentric view of sex definitely has its place. Don’t get me wrong, orgasms are a hell of a lot of fun, but is this the only way to view the pleasures of love making?
I began pondering that question after someone emailed me about his girlfriend’s interest in karezza. He wondered if this was something he should look into. Once I started researching this unique and beautiful approach to lovemaking, I reassured him that karezza would not only enhance their sex life, but deepen and strengthen their bond as well.
Karezza is defined as a spiritual way of making love; it is a love meditation. The word was coined by Alice Bunker Stockham, MD at the end of the 19th century and was generally believed to have derived from the Italian word “carezza”, which means, caress.
The emphasis rests on affection, attention to one another’s breathing, and a sense of deep relaxation during intercourse. Stockham states,
During a lengthy period of perfect control, the whole being of each is merged into the other, and an exquisite exaltation experienced. This may be accompanied by a quiet motion, entirely under subordination of the will, so that the thrill of passion for either may not go beyond a pleasurable exchange.
While you may question why you would want to try this form of lovemaking, I interviewed a couple who I had asked to experience it for themselves and gave more than rave reviews. (Names have been changed to protect the naughty.)
“Practicing karezza seemed like a ridiculous idea at first, but after we tried it, I realized how much time I spent on focusing on having orgasms. I wasn’t even present during the sex we were having, I was so caught up in “getting there”. Once I let all of that go, the sex took me to another place,” explains Jen of her experience.
Her boyfriend agreed. “It was so different than any other experience we had had together. We’ve been together for a long time, but trying this different approach really expanded our sexual horizons and brought us closer together.”
So many women write in asking me for advice on how to achieve orgasm. Everywhere you look there are books on the Big ‘O’; reasons why you can’t get there, how to make yourself climax, how to get him to help you climax, the list goes on and on. But, after learning about this beautiful practice that involved no orgasm, it made me begin to view sex in a totally new light.
What if instead of approaching sex as a race, as something to ‘complete’, as a means to an end, we focused more on the communal spirit of experiencing pleasure with no end? Focusing on being present, focusing on the love energy exchange, on being in sync with one another’s emotional state, one another’s physical state, one another’s breath could change not only how you view one another in between the sheets, but it could enhance your relationship outside the bedroom, as well.
Marnia Robinson, a leader in the Karezza movement, and Gary Wilson wrote a piece entitled, ‘What is Karezza?’ They write,
Using Karezza’s gentle intercourse, we discovered that we can make love for as long as we need to until any sexual tension melts away entirely—as long as we don’t fall back into hungry behavior, or begin fighting ourselves by going close to the edge of orgasm. During lovemaking, the emphasis is on stillness and heart-centered feelings. If the energy begins to build into goal-oriented sensations, we simply relax back into stillness. The feelings during these quiet periods can be especially profound, as if we have entered a timeless cocoon of delighted contentment.
If having an orgasm wasn’t going to define your sexual experience and you were just going to breathe in your lover’s scent, enjoy the feeling of their body rhythmically moving to the sound of your hearts beating, where would you go in that experience?
By changing how we view our sexual experiences with one another, from something we must “achieve” to something we can enjoy, the entire experience opens to us like a flower blooming. If we can’t live in the moment during lovemaking, then when can we? Yes, orgasms are an important component to a healthy sex life, but by broadening your idea as to what “great sex” is, you are allowing yourself to experience special moments with your lover that can only strengthen your bond and love for one another. Sounds like a great way to spend Saturday night!