The Times We Sizzle, and the Times We Sigh: The Multiple Erotics of Arousal, Anticipation, and Release
author: Jody Messler Davies, Ph.D.
discussant: Lucy LaFarge, M.D.
This paper explores the premise that an optimal degree of sexual frustration
is an absolutely necessary and irreducible dimension of sexual excitement
and pleasure. The pleasure, in fact, is predicated on actual enjoyment of
the frustration, of being able to tolerate mounting bodily arousal,
excitement and tension without any guarantee of immediate satisfaction and
release. The author explores the particular object relational implications
of this unique aspect of sexual experience, elaborating a model that
suggests two different interacting but separate subsystems of erotic
fantasy, in interaction with very different self/other configurations. The
first of these self/other configurations is organized and defined by moments
of sexual arousal and yearning while the second occurs around those defined
by satisfaction, pleasure and release.
An extended clinical example is provided.