Wednesday, December 14, 2011

What's sex got to do with it?

In episode 52 from season 4 of Sex and the City called  What's Sex Got to do with It?  Carrie is dating a guy with no attention span, Samantha is dating a woman, Charlotte has to deal with Trey only wanting sex and Miranda has a new addiction to chocolate.  The question of the week is "What comes first the chicken or the sex?"
It's an episode where two of the girls are having sex hoping to turn them into full relationships and one of them is having a relationship without sex hoping to turn it into a sexual one.  Where as Samantha can communicate for the first time about her sexual/relationship desires, neither Charlotte nor Carrie can seem to.

I was once told by a former friend Rita, that all I write is smut. This was said as she threw one of my manuscripts across the room.
That was the last time I let her read any of my work.  That was over ten years ago, and the story I had written wasn't even about sex, it was about relationships and the way people use power in the relationships to get what they want. She just happened to get to the one sex scene in the first half of the story.  
{I used to write two per manuscript, one near the first half, and one at the end. The format made very popular back twenty-five years ago in romance novels. }

Romance. Relationships and yes, sometimes sex. They go hand in hand and are not always pretty or comfortable.  Sometimes you find yourself having one wishing to add the other, sometimes you find yourself wondering how you got the bit you managed. 

But this morning as I was writing a few pages on what could be a new manuscript, I started to think about that day. There was a power struggle in our so-called friendship that I didn't see until years later. Rita liked the idea of having me around because I didn't talk back.  I didn't stand up to her. {The woman had been thrown out of more taverns then I can count, for bar fights when we were younger.}

That day all those years ago, I don't think the fact I had written a semi-graphic sex scene really had anything to do with it. I think it had more to do with the fact I had the guts to write something like that.  Something that made Rita feel uncomfortable, and possibly shifting the power between us.

And you might be thinking how does this tie into the SATC episode?
It's about having the guts to express what you need/desire in a relationship.  When it comes to relationships or friendships of any kind, if you're not getting your needs met there is always an imbalance; leaving one person feeling a bit sheepish. You have to stick up for what you want. In the episode there is a line uttered by Charlotte saying "Why can't I have both the sex and the relationship why does it have to be one or the other?" In another scene she finally has the guts to tell Trey how she feels and starts screaming about how she is married to him not his penis. For her, it wasn't about the sex it was about feeling used. That becomes the point in the series where the power shifts from Trey to Charlotte who up till that point has always been the shy girl who just goes along with everything everyone else wants to do.

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