What's Wrong With The Sex In HBO's 'GIRLS?'


What's Wrong With The Sex In HBO's 'GIRLS?'
Of all the sex dramatized in GIRLS, one vital ingredient is missing.

Solace Sex in which the partners are seeking reassurance that they're truely valued as persons. Here the sex is secondary and the main emotion fueling the sexual desire is anxiety. This kind of sex often leads to cuddling or spooning to relieve the anxiety. Omri Gillath's neuroimaging research has demonstrated that the more anxious we are about depending on others, the more we tend to prefer cuddling and affection to intercourse. The problem with Lena Dunham's three sexual encounters is that virtually none of the partners, with exception of Shoshanna, are in touch with their anxiety.    

Sychrony Sex. This one is the gold standard. It's when emotional openness, responsiveness, tender touch and erotic exploration all come together in a synchronous feast that feels much like a tango in which each partner moves in sync with the other. It's when sex is about making love and not just about working out with your genitals. Virtually all of the characters - Hannah and Adam, Marnie and Charlie and Shoshanna and Matt - in the above scenes are a very long way from the gold standard.

Each of these couples would benefit greatly from emotionally focused therapy that encourages them to get more in touch with the raw spots triggered when they feel emotionally deprived, deserted and unsafe with each other. They'd also benefit from low cost, brief solution focused therapy that encourages them to have new, out of the box emotional experiences and also build upon experiences that may have briefly worked for them earlier in their struggle for greater emotional safety and intimacy.

Imagine what a creative couples counselor or sex therapist could do to help Hannah and Adam, Marnie and Charlie, and Shoshanna and her first real lover get more in touch with what they're truly feeling so they can feel safer with each other and have synchrony sex, that is, truly loving sex.

Andre Moore, Director of Marriage Couples Counseling and Life Coaching in New York City




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