Sex and relationship coaches are a dime a dozen. They have slick websites, gorgeously styled graphics and flattering head-shots. They are usually one of those beautiful people who could probably still look attractive after being drenched in an unexpected rain storm and then falling in a muddy puddle.
Although I don’t fit the ‘beautiful people’ category, I have considered becoming a sex coach myself. Nothing sounds better than talking about sex all day long. But then I thought about it a bit more. Here are some of the reasons why I’ll never be a sex or a relationship coach and why you probably don’t need one.
Sex/Relationship coaches: The point of dating is to ‘end up together’, to get an overpriced diamond ring on your finger and to walk down the aisle in a princess dress you’ll never wear again. You should only date ‘the marrying kind’.
Me: The point of dating is have fun, express your sexuality, and experiment with love. There is no goal except to connect authentically with another human soul.
Just because you can’t see a forever future with someone doesn’t mean you can’t have a loving, soul expanding relationship with them.
Sex/Relationship coaches: If you’re looking for a serious, committed relationship, then hooking up and going all the way too soon could prevent you from being seen as “girlfriend material!” (This is an actual quote).
Me: Have sex on the first date, or on the second date or whenever you want. It’s not going to hurt your relationship status, your reputation or your “pure heart”.
Sexuality is not a finite resource that will get broken or tarnished if you use it too much. Using sex as bait to hook a mate is a misguided strategy which may backfire.
Sex/Relationships coaches: Relationships are hard work and require dedicated commitment (110% some say) from both parties.
Me: If a relationship feels like hard work, you’re doing it wrong. Work is something you need a vacation from. If you need a break from relationship then you should take one, and seriously consider if you really want to go back.
Relationships can be complex, and challenging and intense, but none of those things should feel like work.
LOVE VS ROMANCE
Sex/Relationship coaches: Love only arrives after the glow of romance has faded. You are truly in love when you continue to enjoy each other long after the butterflies have gone.
Me: The disappearance of romantic love is a great loss in a relationship — a loss that should be seen as a problem rather than an eventuality. The flame of sexual desire splutters and dies when we don’t attend to it.
Love stokes the fires of desire every day and expects the madness of lust to continue through dark nights and cold mornings. Romance does not have a use-by-date.
Sex/Relationship coaches: You’ll know you’ve found the one when he/she meets a prescribed list of criteria, including but not limited to (a) you feel content with or with sex (b) it hurts to spend time apart (c) he/she makes you a better person (d) you see them in your future.
Me: Notwithstanding the fact that I don’t believe in soulmates, the man I have been completely in love with for the past five and a half years fails on all the above points.
I wouldn’t feel content without sex (what a ridiculous notion), I like spending time apart, he doesn’t “make” me anything (I am responsible for my own feelings and behaviour) and I have no idea if he’ll be in my future or not (I’m still quite keen on living on my own with seven rescued cats).
If you’re holding out for a perfect prince who ticks all the boxes, you might be waiting a long, long time.
ONE SIZE FITS ALL
Sex/Relationship coaches: I’ve worked with thousands of couples so I know how to fix your relationship (or get you into one).
Me: Every relationship is as different as the two people involved and the unique alchemy that happens when they fall in love. If something is wrong in your relationship and you can’t sort it out among yourselves, then I’m not sure that talking to a third-party is going to help.
Once you take your private treasures and display them to the world, they somehow lose their sacredness and magic.
I am certain that most sex and relationship coaching is unnecessary and might in fact take advantage of people’s insecurities. If you can’t find someone to love, you’re probably trying too hard to follow all the rules. Just be you — both gloriously chaotic and quietly simple, and see everyone you meet as an opportunity to give your heart away without looking for anything in return.
In the end, love is more about giving than receiving.
Love is deliciously complicated and wildly unpredictable.
And no coach can help with any of that.
Have you used a sex/relationship coach? Did they help?