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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What's Emotional Maturity, Needs and Denial Got To Do With It?

First off, I am not against casual sex, if that is what you want for yourself. For me, it is unfulfilling, because it is all about the physical, and it's missing the most important ingredient, in my opinion...emotion, not to mention trust.

I recently wrote the article, “The Casual Sex Debate – Just Had to Add My Two Cents”, which created some opposition. Not as much validation as I had hoped for, but there goes those unfulfilled expectations again. Oh well!

When we have made the decision to engage in any particular behavior, we want to feel justified in behaving that way. We want it to be acceptable. After all, we gauge ourselves, and how well we are doing and fitting in, by our own expectations and standards, and by how others are relating to us. We are raised by rules that are geared at helping us “fit it”, so that as we go throughout our lives, we will be able to live harmoniously and prosper in society…the path of least resistance, so to speak.

There is no question that social relations are the prime instigator of emotions (Kemper, 1978; de Rivera & Grinkis, 1986). Other people, or groups of others, are normally are largest cause for emotions. We are social creatures. When you are able to get down to the heart of the primary emotion, and its trigger, normally people are involved. We all have our individual basic emotional needs, and in varying degrees of importance. Many of our emotions stem from one of those needs not being met sufficiently, which triggers that primary, gut reaction. The best way to truly get to know yourself and others is to discover what your/their most important emotional needs are.

Emotions, protecting the “ego”, and satisfying our needs, are our greatest powerful driving forces in our life. These, along with our core values and core beliefs, which everything else is filtered through, are all in the foundation of every decision we make. Emotions are more powerful than willpower. We should never underestimate the power of emotions, and the subconscious mind.

The subconscious controls 85% of our behavior, behind the scenes, hidden from our conscious awareness, unless we begin to spot our triggers, and discover our core values, core beliefs, and emotional needs, then we can start recognizing some of the little tricks it has been up to. Sometimes, however, our core beliefs are not always beneficial in helping us maintain our core values. But we like to be in control; control of ourselves, how we interact in our environment, and how our environment interacts with us. NOTE: That little nasty, critical voice you sometimes hear, but is always active in the back of your head, will give you a hint as to some of those core beliefs.

Everything we do has a positive intent behind it, but since “ego” is involved, those intents have some positive intent, although sometimes hidden, for ourselves. We do come first. Even when our behavior appears to be unselfish, we are still hoping for it to bring us some gratification. And our level of gratification is gauged by how closely the outcome comes to our expectations, that positive intent, even when we are not consciously aware of what those expectations are.

I have allowed myself to be used throughout my life, and personally, in most cases, I just don’t like it. Let’s face it, we are using and being used in every facet of our lives, one way or another. Even when I consciously agree to being used, the reward has to outweigh my desire not to be used, and the pitfalls, for me to reach any sort of gratification. Therein lays my discomfort with casual sexual encounters. I have expectations for myself, as well as for those people that I allow to become a part of my life, as we all do. Sure I could lower my expectations (the ones I am conscious of), but then I would not be true to myself, therefore I would be uncomfortable, and I would not be receiving the gratification that I am, “if truth be told”, seeking. But not everyone has the same expectations as I do.

One of the commenter’s (Casual), that were triggered by the article, stated that they felt it all came down to emotional maturity, and expectations. But there is always a hidden message behind our triggers, and the subsequent reactions. Just so you know, I was triggered by Hammertime’s article, which triggered a core emotion, and secondary emotions, which prompted me to write the article. I have been emotionally manipulated in the past, and I have not fully forgiven myself for allowing it, and for not being able to see it for what it was.

Casual’s comment:

Though what I did read amounted to "Hammer is a jerkoff" (which I agree with) and "casual sex can make you hate yourself" (which I also, ironically, agree with.)

I think it all comes down to emotional maturity and expectations.

I'll just leave that out there.

Okay, I confess, triggered again. I recognized this entire comment as manipulative influential language by, first trying to build some level of rapport by agreeing with me, and then throwing out the neg/teaser comment, regarding emotional maturity, and expectations, with the intent of causing self-doubt. Then they added, “I’ll just leave that out there”, meant to further cause you to question and doubt yourself, and your beliefs. In other words, “chew on that one for awhile”.

Now we will move to the qualifiers. Qualifiers will do a few things here. If you look at some of the more aggressive negs and teases, you will notice that they actually have more to do with challenging their identity, this builds more investment, hence making rapport easier to take flight. So with the qualifiers you can really gain some ground. First start thinking of qualifiers as something that allows you to inflict Bait and allows you to lead a topic to talk about. In other words ask questions that lead into a leveraging conversation and have it make them work for their identity. Also there is an element of cold reading that comes into play here too. (I thought I had pasted the link to this quote, but apparently got sidetracked before following through. Now I can't find the article I took it from, but will add when I do.)

So, setting “emotional maturity” aside and with the help of my “bad twin”, I took the bait, and decided to toy with it, and them, especially after I read their article on the definitions of casual sex. Damn bad twin.

My “bad twin” headed on over to Casual’s site, which I do with all those that leave comments, and found their article about the definitions of casual sex, which according to the article, consists of which rules apply to each situation. HINT: Leave me a comment, and I will always head on over to your place.

My comment on their article:

Yep, I really get the gist of “emotional maturity” now. Thanks for the insight.

Replied by:

admin Says:
May 13th, 2009 at 3:08 pm

Thanks for the compliment. (Some people are just so easy)

I really get the gist of “defensive sarcasm” now. (Nope, just dry humor, but hey, thanks for continuing to give me prime examples of the terms you like to flash around, but I get it already)

Would chookums like a little more faux naïvité with her douchebag? (Personally, I don’t think we are close enough to start giving each other “pet names”. Just curious, is that even allowed within the faux casual relationship? But hey, I am getting an extremely enlightening lesson on “emotional maturity”, and “defensive sarcasm”.

http://tinyurl.com/pxg9p5 for anyone feeling bewildered by this exchange. (if TinyURL is used (either automatically, or manually) this SEO benefit will still come. Sorry.)

Other comments to their article:

jordan Says:
May 13th, 2009 at 10:38 pm
dig it. enlightening… and apparently i need to ponder my own definitions. i think this should be on random big ass billboards all over the city. think of it… time saved = more humping; restaurants thrive from the increased traffic to satisfy after sex munchies. it’s just good for the economy. seriously - straight forward is good. (Certainly wouldn’t want to waste valuable humping time to having to confirm the rules. Get in and get out quick. The less time, money, and emotional effort as possible)

admin Says:

May 13th, 2009 at 10:51 pm

Beautiful dream, Jordan. BEAUTIFUL.

And I left them this comment on my blog:


You can spout off "emotional maturity, as one of your sales lines for what it is you are selling, but I don't associate "emotional maturity", with casual sex, by any stretch of the imagination. DENIAL, yes, emotional maturity, no.

As far as expectations. All parties involved have their individual expectations when choosing to engage in casual sex, but I guarantee you, one of you is walking away with unfulfilled expectations.
(As Evan Marc Katz has stated, the exception does not change the rule.)

Followed by:

casualencountersblog said...

Those are some comically impressive assumptions you're making about any number of people with whom you are not familiar.

searchingwithin said...

It appears that we both find each other comical. At least we agree on one thing. As far as the rest, we will have to agree to disagree.

casualencountersblog said...

I don't find you comical. I find your assumptions comical. I don't know you well enough to find you anything very much at all, yet. But who knows, that may change if I hang around long enough.

Specifically, my issues are with these two statements: "but I guarantee you, one of you is walking away with unfulfilled expectations" and "I don't associate "emotional maturity", with casual sex, by any stretch of the imagination. DENIAL, yes"

How can you possibly know either of those things to be true? It's beyond ridiculous; it's logically incoherent. Ergo, comical.

Have a great day.

Casual sexual relationships don’t open the door for complete honesty, either for yourself, or with the other party, because trust can’t be built. The relationship is too limited. You are always holding something back, because just like romantic relationships, there are rules that need to be followed. First and foremost, attachment is not allowed, and emotional expression is kept to a minimum. It’s a fill-in for an emotional need that is not being met regularly enough, or at all, or a game something along the lines of “Who Can I Fuck Tonight?”. Either way the gratification is short-lived. The hormonal and neurotransmitter high only lasts so long, that which we are seeking to fulfill, is only being met for a short time, therefore, the need to go out hunting for more.

Even though, supposedly you are retaining your freedom, you still have to follow the rules. Damn those rules. If you do form any type of attachment, you have to conceal it, because that breaks the rules, the spoken or unspoken contract, and you risk loosing your benefits. After all, casual sexual encounters are all about the physical benefits (or so we like to convince ourselves), without having to deal with the gluey attachments, and are designed around as little effort, and obligation being put forth as possible, except during the actual sexual act itself, of course.

But, if truth be told, there is more to it than the physical act, the fun. Even though emotions are supposed to be kept to a minimum, you are still desiring to fulfill or get validation for an emotional need, what ever that may be; need to feel loved, wanted, desired, masculine/feminine, connection, whatever.

Let’s look at the term Casual left about “emotional maturity”.

Some of the components of “emotional maturity” are:

being able to control your emotions
your feelings are not easily hurt
a good loser
you don’t expect special consideration from anyone
you take responsibility for your own emotions and reactions to those emotions…no blaming
“to thine own self be true”.

Okay, I see where that all fits with casual sexual encounters. But what else is there?

You are honest with yourself and others about what you feel, and you do not hide, stuff, suppress, or repress what you feel, but honestly experience it, in an appropriate manner, and at appropriate times.

Here is where things start to become a little hazy, because it is our human tendency to suppress, repress, and hide away the feelings that we find to be unacceptable, or uncomfortable. We have been masters at doing this since we were children. Hell, we were taught to do this. We don’t always want to be honest with ourselves about how we really feel. “I don’t like feeling this way, and it’s not working out for me, and my current situation, so I will just make a conscious effort to feel this other way instead, rearrange my wants, and expectations, and I’ll just change my beliefs to match the situation”. Or, we are afraid that our feelings will be viewed as unacceptable to others, so, we try to hide, or deny them, in order to gain some sense of acceptance. Nice try, even though it may appear to be working for a time, you still have your core beliefs, values, and emotional needs to contend with. They just keep sticking their nose in. So few of us are willing to be honest with ourselves, let alone other people.

How about patience, and the ability to delay instant gratification, and impulses?
Just to name a few.

Let’s look at emotional needs, which vary in degrees and importance from person to person.

Psychological Needs (Examples)

Love Self – esteem
Respect Fulfillment
Courage Affiliation
Learning Equality
Affection Belonging
Fun Freedom
Power Status
Self-actualization Pleasure
Emotional safety Recognition
Independence Hope
Praise Security

Anthony Robbins believes that we have six main emotional needs. The first four are the needs of the personality. Every human finds a way to meet them, even if they have to lie to themselves.

1. Certainty – the ability to avoid pain and have pleasure, comfort, security

We get bored when we have total certainty, so…

2. Uncertainty – variety, surprises, the anxiety of the unknown
3. Significance – to feel important, needed, special, unique
4. Connection and love

The other two are needs of the spirit. This is where fulfillment comes from:

1. You must grow – we grow so we have something to give of value. Every thing in the Universe grows, or it dies. Contributes, or it goes extinct
2. Contribute beyond ourselves – the secret of living is giving

Most people keep their problems, because they meet their needs. And it meets their needs without risking their greatest fear.

Blaming others
Avoiding decisions
Withdrawing from relationships

They seem to protect us from our fear that if we try and fail, we won’t be enough, and won’t be loved. When people come up against a risky decision they feel unwilling to make, they will often develop a safe problem, which will distract them from making the risky decision.

How about one of the words that triggered Casual, denial. Don’t even know I am lying. There are things we believe, and things we want to believe.


We are all bias, yes even you.

Ego Defense Mechanisms

Games we engage in, both at work and at play

How about the techniques for changing minds

Persuasion Principles

And here is a nights reading on how we, feel, think, and behave

There is more to how our mind works than logic.

Since I have started this blog, I have been referred to, or it has been insinuated that I am a douchbag twice, so far, so I have decided to wave my badge on honor proudly.


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5 Love note(s):

tinque said...

Hi Searching,
I'm sorry, but why would you even engage this person? I couldn't read all of the comments you pulled from his site (I'm assuming male, maybe unjustified). It was too painful and trigger full. There's too much negativity as it is in this world and within self. Exposing oneself to even more, even in the name of research seems punishing. I'm guilty of this sometimes sure. It's not the healthiest behavior.
You've been seemingly more vulnerable lately. My suggestion for what it's worth is leave the stressful elements be, and just be with you, and express yout heart as you do so well. I suppose it's okay, good even to read about all aspects of the spectrum, but to challenge seems, well self-hurtful. I hope I'm not triggering you with this. And if I'm saying this all wrong I do apologize.
As to the subject of your article, casual sex, for me it is shallow, meaningless, and I would challenge that it even feels all that good, maybe it the moment, but for women probably not so much, and as for sustaining feel goodness, it takes a loving, deeply intimate relationship, and even the in the moment stuff feels sooooo much more, in all ways. The deeper and more deeply intimate the relationship, the deeper and more deeply intense the sensations, body, mind, heart , and spirit. And the potential is seemingly limitless.

"Most people keep their problems, because they meet their needs. And it meets their needs without risking their greatest fear."

This is key, so important to understand, own, and work with that is if one so chooses, for this is scary territory to delve into. It's too hard and too painful for most people.
And as this relates to casual encounters guy, it seems to me he is full of his greatest fear and in deep denial of it. I suppose I feel badly for him ultimately, but I still say, please don't hurt yourself with these sorts, ones that seems so lost. You probably won't reach them, but then again maybe you planted a seed, and seeds are good.
All the best.
tinque xxoo

searchingwithin said...

spacelover, thanks for stopping by and the compliment. Of course I would love for you to keep coming back, and connecting as a friend.

I have checked out your blogs, and you have a nice start on them. I would like to let you know a couple of things that might be of help to you along the way.

When you write in all caps, people take that as shouting, and it can cause some to become angry. I know that is not your intention.

Also, when you leave a comment, you leave your site address along with your user name on the form, do not do it in the comment, this is considered SPAMMING, and people will not tolerate it. The only reason I did not delete your comment for that very reason, is because I realize you don't know any better.

Best wishes with your blogs, and much fun.

Best of luck

searchingwithin said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog, and taking the time to respond, your opinion is valuable here & I thank you. I hope you continue to visit often.

You're right, there is too much negativity, & although I most normally choose to steer clear of as much as possible, I cannot, nor will I hide under a rock. I have been there, done that, & there is no growth in that, in my opinion. Part of the purpose of this blog is for me to process, & heal those hurts & fears that have negative control over me, & rather than running, to turn & face them head-on, as well as discover where they originated, & choose whether or not they serve any useful purpose for my future growth.

Although normally I wouldn’t feel the need to defend myself, I am going to in this instance, because in the case of Casual my boundaries have been crossed, as well as the behavior I will & won’t tolerate in my home (blog). If anyone chooses to cross those, I will engage.

Some people will take on bad behavior to get attention because they rather have negative attention than none.

Although many times I will ignore someone who is behaving badly rather than reward them with recognition, as for Casual, they crossed my boundaries. I do have to thank them however, because this blog is not only written from my heart, as well as an expression of my heart, it's also about love/relationships, both good & bad. As well as learning to recognize when those relationships aren’t healthy, heal yourself when you have allowed them, & many times unknowingly sought them out, & to move your life & choices into a healthier direction, so you can “Open Your Heart to the Love”.

I believe the only reason they commented on my article was for spamming (which I won’t tolerate on my blog(s)) because they aren’t a regular visitor, but only responded knowing people would be drawn to an article on casual sex (which their site is geared around) many of whom wouldn’t agree with my opinion, & would head over to their site to meet up with people who are interested & more suited to their lifestyle choices.

I have been exposed to emotional manipulation several times in my life; it’s painful, & the damage inflicted is lifelong. It's a major contributor to why so many people close their heart to love. Although some do it unconsciously, there are people who make it their life mission to engage in that behavior for their own personal gratification, at the expense of others. Their blog is geared around & teaches techniques for that purpose, & their original comment used influential verbiage geared at entering into your subconscious, with emotional manipulation in mind. Something else, I won’t tolerate.

I welcome debate, & hoped/expected that article to bring some. However, rather than responding by giving an intelligent argument, I believe they chose to flash around words/phrases without explanation as to how they applied, but rather with the intent on being insulting which again, I won’t tolerate.

I’m still learning, & will continue to learn till the day my body returns to Mother Earth, & beyond, so I’m by no means perfect, nor will I ever be. So I will be triggered, when I wish I wouldn’t; I will engage, when possibly I should keep my big mouth shut; I will turn my back & walk way, when I should stay & fight; I will say & do things I will regret later, & should have kept to myself; I will be weak, when I would much rather be strong, & I will be too strong, when I should be more receptive; & I will state my opinion without cowardice, when again, I should keep my mouth shut. I have one of the biggest hearts you will ever find, & the fight & spirit of the mightiest Warrior, as well as the vulnerability & weakness of a newborn kitten, but I will always, from this point forward, be genuinely…me.

Chris Ksaid...

spacelover is a spammer, and probably a bot. Delete, don't engage.

I'm a bit disturbed by the very cynical "interpretations" you gave in brackets to Casual's comments. Just because you disagree with someone doesn't make them manipulative.

searchingwithin said...

Chris K,

We are all always manipulating, because we have our dreams, hopes, wishes...expectations of how we want things to go, and set out to make it happen according, or at least as close as possible to our vision.

Disagreeing is not my issue with casualencounters, I also did not agree with Dadshouses comment on that article, either. My issue is with the way that casualencounters chose to attempt to rely their disagreement.

I'm intrigued by your disturbance to my interpretations, this article should have cleared up a lot of where they came from.

However, apparently the article left you with emotion, as well as a touch of curiosity for spice, and food for thought. So my intention was accomplished.

People disagree with me all the time, makes life interesting, don't you think?

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