Mama always warned that no man is ever going to buy the cow, if you’re giving the milk away for free. In the process of creating “90 Day” rules and using sex as a dangling carrot in front of a horse instead of a way to truly build a relationship beyond physical attraction, you may be making your man lactose intolerant. Playing games by putting a price on the pleasure offered by your love below in many ways trivializes just how special that experience can be.
The honest truth is that if a man is only after sex in the first place, it doesn’t matter if you wait 90 days or 9 months, once he gets his half a gallon he will get ghost. I’m not saying you should have sex with every man you’re attracted to three minutes after meeting him; because if he is really into you sex won’t make a difference, because in many ways the timing does. There’s a certain level of respect built in a relationship where sex isn’t on the forefront; sex can complicate things and putting it off can allow a man more time to reveal the gentleman or jerk he really is. What I am saying is that if you initially balance a relationship by making sex the gatekeeper to true intimacy or the path to problem solving, you implicitly send the message that your value lies in between your legs.
But what about using sex as a bargaining tool in a relationship? Well, there’s big chance that the only one you’re doing a disservice to are your own desires. When a man doesn’t lose his mind over some lost vajayjay, a woman may look at herself as a sexual #FAIL. The saying goes that “pu**y is power”, but I don’t believe that holds true. The power resides in our femininity, our intelligence, our confidence, our strength and the fact that most of us bring so much more to the table than good sex. In the end, it’s going to take much more than your bedroom skills to keep any man worth holding onto.
Even the most conservative woman has considered using sex as a bargaining tool at some point to get her man to act right in a relationship, but what happens when your man cancels his flight on your power trip or worse yet, seeks another airline? The truth is that there’s not much to sex; the animals on National Geographic have got that one covered, but what else are you bringing to the table? Honesty, a little bit of attitude and confidence that comes with knowing a man won’t make or break your happiness are what will get you what you want in a relationship, not holding your libido hostage.
I’m not saying men don’t respond to sex (or the lack of it). I’ve seen men steal from their mama, lie to their children and quit their jobs just on the anticipation of a sex. All I’m saying is that if you’re looking for long-term love or a mature relationship, do you really want a man who is simple enough to be played like a puppet solely on the promise of a sexual encounter? Can you really wake up to a man who you know can’t tell left from right whenever the scent of sex is in the air and still respect him?
So does withholding sex actually ever work? The answer is yes and no. If you’re contemplating using sex as conflict collateral, you have to consider just how important getting busy is to your man. If you never actually communicate about the problem, most men are incapable of drawing an association between you shutting down shop and the fact that he forgot to put the toilet seat down. Some men may be just as content handling business with their hand until you come to your senses. And for a man whose loyalty is already questionable, withholding sex may be all the reason he needs to seek satisfaction elsewhere. Does the fact that you locked your legs shut justify his infidelity? Of course not, but when you start playing games with sex, you have to consider the fact that you could end up losing.
The high school days of “Catch a Girl, Freak a Girl” are over. When a woman withholds sex it’s a passive-aggressive response to being angry or hurt and a cowardly way to avoid honestly confronting your partner and putting in some work to hash out the conflict. Boys respond to this type of punishment; a mature man will wonder why you can’t just talk it out. When you reach adulthood it’s time to be a grown woman who’s bring more to the table besides the fact that you got that “good good and you’re Michael Jackson-bad.” If you’re over 25 and playing Nicki Minaj lyrics in the back of your head and flying a banner with the belief that your milkshake brings all the boys to the yard, you need to consider planting some more things to offer in your garden. Besides, every woman knows that if you really want to get your way, you take away his Xbox.
Have you ever withheld sex to get your way? Did it work?
Toya Sharee is a community health educator and parenting education coordinator who has a passion for helping young women build their self-esteem and make well-informed choices about their sexual health. She also advocates for women’s reproductive rights and blogs about everything from beauty to love and relationships. Follow her on Twitter @TheTrueTSharee or visit her blog Bullets and Blessings .
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