Because we want to be open about love and what it entails, and if we are going to attempt to understand its dimensions, we need to accept that there are different ways to express the kind of love we feel for other people. I am hopeful, and perhaps to my detriment that this does not need further explanation.
You must have heard someone exclaim that they love another person like a brother, or a sister, or like a friend. The projection of love by the person giving it, and rightfully, its acceptance by the recipient are subjective in the manifestation of behaviour towards each other. In short: how people behave towards the people they love is wholly dependent on their personal experience. There isn't much anyone outside of that context can say to invalidate their behaviour, insofar as their projections and acceptances are mutual.
Now, I have a point here relating to the title of this piece, so I ask you to summon your self-control and follow along for a bit longer. I could also ask you not to think about how many people you wished loved you differently, but your sensibilities must remain your concern if we are to agree on what I am about to say. And therein lies that detriment I feared in my opening paragraph: imagine or apprehend if you are a sensible human, that many have disagreed with my next set of points.
The first point, Consensual Sex is a redundant phrase. It is grammatically and ethically wrong. Sex is often one of the ways we express love for other people. And yes, love is not always necessary for physical intimacy- attraction is sometimes all one needs to accept the proposition of proximity to another person. Intercourse can also be a proper transaction between two agreeing parties as is the case of sex workers in legally well-regulated markets.
Notice my deliberate use of the words agreeing and acceptance in both stipulations I laid out in the first point, these conditions are non-negotiable if we are talking about sex, and anything outside of their context is assault or what many of us consider rape.
The second point, Submission is too often conflated with consent, and that is detrimental to all involved. This point is mostly for men (if I can call you that, my definition of a man is likely different than yours if this offends you), who believe themselves the stronger sex. Suppose, for instance, that you think that pressuring a woman into intercourse is acceptable or that your money is a badge of your entitlement to a woman's acceptance. In that case, you need to reevaluate your worth to society. I will submit that you need to rethink your value as a human being, but I am known to be too harsh occasionally.
There is relevant literature about how men using money to lure women into getting close leads to rape myth acceptance; a phenomenon in which men who pay for things feel entitled to the women's bodies. Further, and this is the part that threatens to have me commit genocide, that others often perceive the rape resulting from his entitlement as acceptable.
I have linked to scholarly articles in the foot notes of this write up for the sake of honesty and intellectual responsibility.
I will end with this, and remind you of how I warned you about the detriment and apprehensions this would bring about. I want you to take a clear and honest look at yourself, and if you have betrayed any of the conditions in my two points, you have a lot of work to do to improve who you are as a person, a lover, and a useful member of society.
Sex is and should always be consensual, and anything else is rape. And forgive me for including this here, even for someone who can write a thousand words an hour, this was a difficult paragraph to construct. But, if you have not thought about what these conditions imply about how some people treat children, then I urge you to correct anyone who uses the words sex and children in the same sentence; they are logically and humanly incompatible.
Of all the many issues relating to personal responsibility and accountability, this one worries me the most. More on it later.
Sex is fun, it's healing, it's more than most give it credit for, especially when we do it properly - let's take it back - let's free it from the clutches of ignorance and human stupidity that always threaten to ruin beautiful things.