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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » What if s/he LAUGHS at me?!?

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Author Topic: What if s/he LAUGHS at me?!?
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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We've often heard users express a concern in sexual relationships or potential sexual relationships that the other person might laugh at their body, how it does (or doesn't) respond sexually, at what sexual desires a person might have, the works.

Have you felt this way before, or do you feel this way now? What are these fears for you, if you have them, and where do you feel like they come from? What do you think would -- or do you know to -- assuage your fears: more time to develop trust and knowing one another, more gradual entry into kinds of sex together, a cerTain kind of commitment, a given discussion about your worries...?

Do you ever worry that YOU will laugh at (not laugh with) a potential or current partner when it comes to sex? Do you feel like you can be trusted to have the maturity not to mock or laugh at a partner? And if you have no concerns you'd do such a thing, but have concerns a partner would, why do you think that is?

Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I've never really felt scared I'll be laughed at. I've been scared of disappointment, or disgust, about my body and my sexuality. This is mostly because this is how I was brought up. I was scared the first time my boyfriend saw me naked that he wouldn't be satisfied with my small breasts, or would be grossed about by my body hair. But he wasn't because he's awesome [Smile] . And no, I never worry about laughing at someone when it comes to sex. The only times we've ever laughed has been in a light hearted, "whoops, silly us, my shirt is stuck over my nose and won't come off" kind of way. Sex, and love, are discoveries. Not everything is going to be perfect, and that's great. I don't separate sex from love either, so I think... why would I ridicule someone I love, in any situation? I can definitely be trusted not to mock anyone.

"Love does not make itself in the desire for copulation, but in the desire for shared sleep." - The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

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With a new guy it's always a little nerve-wracking but after a point, there is enough trust that you know they wouldn't be awful and that they love you for things other than your body, so that little imperfections don't matter.
Posts: 19 | From: Philadelphia, PA | Registered: Nov 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I am not exactly afraid that my bf will laugh at my body, but I am certainly extremely self-conscious about my body. I insist on keeping the lights off...I'm not sure the root of this but it's definitely not coming from a fear of being laughed at. Whenever I have a shy/self-conscious moment my bf always tells me that I'm beautiful, which happens quite often actually. My bf is not exactly good-looking (but he makes up for it in many other ways!) so it's not like my body doesn't "live up to" his body or anything.
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Scarleteen Volunteer
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I also have trouble imagining a partner actually laughing at me, but I have had similar anxiety about being judged. My fears have mostly been about stuff like: my touch isn't good, that my movements aren't natural or sexy, that I'm too rigid, self-conscious, awkward, not tuned-in to the other person, selfish...

There's a certain strain of those feelings with which I feel a pretty direct connection to a childhood incident. I had a sexually-abusive caregiver who would mock how I bathed myself and how I dried off with a towel (and used this as a rationale for fondling me). I remember feeling incompetent and shame about how I touched my body.

This is a very straightforward example of a child's relationship to her body being perverted, but I mean, there are probably a million ways I got subtle and not-so-subtle messages from my parents that my impulses and how I was in my body were not good: as a child my dancing was ridiculed, going through puberty I got negative messages about being naked etc. It was a general atmosphere that said my physicality and my sexuality were not okay...The result being that I AM particularly self-conscious with partners and have also felt like I'll be judged harshly because of it.

What has helped assuage the fears are some of the things Heather suggested: trust over time, feeling close with a partner and ongoing discussion. It's also helped realizing that I really, truly don't have to participate in activities that I don't feel comfortable doing. If I'm feeling incredibly awkward with some activity, it's a big hint that I don't want to be doing it at that time.

[ 11-22-2008, 12:27 AM: Message edited by: bluejumprope ]

without tenderness, we are in hell. -Adrienne Rich

Posts: 407 | From: USA | Registered: Oct 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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