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Eros and Aging - Page 13


One advantage of teaching, self-entrancement and role-enactment styles of arousal, rather than total dependency on partner-interaction arousal, is to liberate women and men from rigid sex roles and expectations. They become more an intimate team, sharing pleasure and enhancing sexual function.

Our case illustration focuses on the male because it's most often men who cling to the performance demands of their youth. We believe the GES model is relevant to couple dynamics for straight and gay couples. It can serve as a lifelong "compass" for female, male, and couple satisfaction.

We agree with Ogden that resistant couples are particularly challenging. Messy histories, abuse, affairs, ongoing conflicts, and/or major life stresses must be addressed as they are the milieu within which a sexual relationship is grounded. Realistic, reasonable cooperation as an intimate sexual team is a microcosm for the larger relationship requirements for both traditional and nontraditional couples.

Michael Metz, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist and marital therapist practicing in St. Paul, Minnesota. Website: www. michael metzphd.com. Barry McCarthy, Ph.D., has a diplomate in clinical psychology and practices at the Washington Psychological Center. He's a professor of psychology at American University. Contact: mccarthy160@comcast.net. They're the coauthors of Coping with Erectile Dysfunction and Coping with Premature Ejaculation. Their latest book is Men's Sexual Health.

Gina Ogden, Ph.D., is a licensed marriage and family therapist, sex therapy diplomate, and researcher who lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She conducted the first national survey on integrating sexuality and spirituality, and is the author of The Heart & Soul of Sex; Women Who Love Sex, and most recently, The Return of Desire. Contact: womanspirit@earthlink.net.

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