What’s the difference between having sex and making love?
I often hear it said – by both men and women – that ‘having sex’ is not the same as ‘making love’. They say that ‘having sex’ is just a physical act; whereas making love is both physical and emotional.
Invariably, ‘making love’ is held in higher esteem than ‘having sex’. The logic is that if there’s more emotion, you’ve put more of yourself into it. Making love is sex plus.
But sex can’t be contained in the neat divisions of ‘making love’ and ‘having sex’. Certainly, sex has different textures and qualities to it, but the variety is far more subtle than that division suggests. What’s more, its quality can change in an instant.
However, for the sake of discussion, lets go with the idea that ‘having sex’ and ‘making love’ are different. Why do we value making love more than having sex? Why are emotions more valuable than sensations?
I think the underlying reason is that we are ashamed of sex, and of the body in its sexual expression. We want its pleasure but that pleasure is dirtied with original sin. Hence phrases such as ‘dirty weekend.’ It’s fun and pleasurable, so why call it dirty? Why not ‘pleasure weekend’?
I think the physical act of ‘having sex’ is just as valuable as ‘making love’. Body and emotion are vital aspects of our humanity.
What do you think?