Changing taste in partners

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I would be interested in feedback regarding the shift in our internal "menu" around who we choose to be partnered with. I am currently single. While I do have a small group of amazing, stimulating, loving, respectful male friends, none of them are people I am in the least attracted to as either sexual or life partners. I truly do not know how much that has to do with my dopamine driven neurochemistry. I'd like, as most of us on the site probably would, to "rewire" my brain a bit, or to write a different menu for myself, if you will.
It seems to me the most reasonable way to do that is to avoid dopamine surges, participate in oxytocin producing bonding/connection behaviors as much as possible, and do my best to listen to my heart rather than my head. If anyone else has any ideas, I'd love to hear them.

Sounds good

You may also want to experiment with an oracle in connection with mate choice. I say that because I think it is really easy to overlook good mates on this planet. We're so used to choosing with our biological drives - and they don't always sense who would actually make the best companion.

One reason I ended up on this quest was because I figured out that I was choosing men who were mirrors of my own patterns. I decided to turn my love life over to the Divine. That lead to a very interesting learning curve. Among other discoveries, I noticed what psychologist Lisa Diamond realized in her recent book, "Sexual Fluidity," namely, that our attractions don't HAVE to go from "sexual desire" to "bonding." They can go the other way, too. That is, suppose you feel guided to consider someone as a partner whom you aren't attracted to. Fact is, you can selflessly nurture that person and THEN discover that a sexual attraction develops. This is an interesting bit of knowledge, because it means we're no longer at the mercy of our biology.

Diamond tracked non-heterosexual women for almost ten years. To her amazement die-hard lesbians sometimes fell in love with men, and straight women sometimes fell in love with women. In other words, people can end up with partners that don't fit their "sexual turn-on" programming when they get to know the person at a heart level first.

This is a long way of saying that you may want to check in with your higher guidance about those lovely men in your life. You could have solid gold right under your nose. Wink

Hi Cariad

It has been my experience that as we begin to do any kind of healing work, the people we attract or are attracted to in our lives begins to shift. I certainly believe this is the case with learning to balance and master our sexual energy. My tastes in men have drastically changed, meaning I'm not really interested anymore in men who have little to offer. As single woman for the last two years, I've gradually found more and more satisfaction in my relationships with my male friends. These relationships have been very nourishing for me, especially as I've learned to relax and not worry about any expectations that may arise if I get too close to someone I may only consider a friendly acquaintance. I've gained some great new friends with this attitude, and strengthened the bonds with old ones.

And speaking of old friends to whom you are not attracted, I would suggest not discounting the possibility of a relationship in the future! A couple months ago, I found myself spontaneously attracted to someone I'd known for almost 15 years, and yet hadn't really considered "in that way." We've been spending a lot of time together recently, and honestly, it is still quite a shock to me the new direction of our relationship. I never would have guessed that I would be feeling the way I'm feeling now!

I think you are really on the right track by questioning your dopamine-driven urges, and how they may be keeping you from real intimacy. I think you'll be surprised to see how that changes as you change your focus. Good luck!


Probably the only thing you have to do is tell that voice in your head that tends to write people off to shut up. For myself I always assumed that if men knew the "real me" they either wouldn't "get" me or would be put off. But the fact is, you can never really find out unless you do open up to people (it doesn't have to be everyone, but a few that you trust). I didn't really pick my current lover, I just allowed him to find me, but I don't regret it at all!

Thanks, everyone, you've

Thanks, everyone, you've given me some food for thought.
I have considered these men in my life, two in particular, very carefully because of the connection we already have. I am open to this changing in the future, if that's the way it goes, but for now, the big internal gong in me says a loud and clear NO; there is learning to be done with both of them that I think might be impacted adversely by bringing a sexual element into it. I do see, as you touched on, Discordia, that the men in my life today are entirely different animals than the men who have been in my life since I can remember. That's one of the things that lets me know I'm on the right track. The more I learn about myself and the more committed I am to making change in the way I relate in relationship, the happier and more grounded I feel. Don't know if it's age, experience, hormonal changes or what, but I am not "looking". Paradoxically, that's usually when my next partner shows up :)
Marnia, do you have an oracle you like?
Be well,

Who knows?

Your next partner may not be "on the screen" yet, as you acknowledge. You're probably right that you are being guided to learn what you need to in the right order. Ultimately that is more important than "having a partner NOW"...although waiting can be frustrating.

My favorite oracle is "The I Ching Workbook" by R L Wing. I also created a simplified oracle here at the site:

Hi, I just found this site

Hi, I just found this site yesterday when I did a Google search for "valley orgasm" after reading about it in Osho's Book of Secrets. I'd heard the term before in Mantak Chia's books, but didn't understand what it meant. (Now I realize Mantak's approach is more of a playing at the peak than abiding in the valley, hence my confusion.)

This site is a god-send. I've been studying Chi Kung for a long time and have always been attracted to the sexual kind because I hate the post-ejaculatory blues and feel it has a negative impact on my health. (I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.) Despite all my study, I never found anything that really resonated with me, though I've been applying the techniques for years. Nothing really worked, but now, I think I've finally found it. I look forward to what happens!

Anyway, my response to this thread: I'm just curious about how a single woman can convert the dopamine "addiction" to the oxycotin pattern? I can see how the partner exercises on this site would help that process, but what if she's single?

For males, it seems easier. I plan to do the Shaktichalana Mudra that Inelson posted. (Thanks, Inelson!) I'm highly motivated, since my #1 priority in life right now is healing. CFS is holding me back from so much, and I've had it since 1990. Because of it I'm incredibly socially isolated (moving to Crestone, an area with only a few hundred residents, where I didn't know anybody, didn't help, but I needed to do it for many reasons), and the loneliness and boredom make me hornier than normal. Avoiding ejaculatory masturbation was difficult, but I believe the new perspective I've gained from this site will put me on the right track where it's no longer a battle between my will and my instincts. Instinct is powerful! It's the folly of man that we feel shame for giving in when really the answer lies in working with rather than against them. I just didn't know how before.

But back to my question: A woman has a stronger partner-bonding instinct than a man, so I wonder if this kind of solo masturbation practice would work as well? Maybe it can, now that I think more about it. Just that it probably should be a bit different. The Shaktichalana Mudra, the way it was described, is obviously a very masculine practice. It's direct. To the point. You sit down. Meditate. Grab your willy. Etc.

The equivalent feminine practice might have to involve things like lighting candles, taking a bath... things that trigger her nurturing instinct and direct it toward self-nurturance instead of a partner. Does this seem like the right track for a woman to take? I'm just curious because I really want to understand female psychology. Lack of understanding it has led to many relationship problems, and since I've dedicated my life to spiritual growth, I naturally want to grow in the realm of relationship as well.

Finally, I have a similar, related question: I wonder how possible it would be for a young man with raging hormones? It seems like even if I found this site 10-20 years ago, despite my strong interest in sexual chi kung, it would be too difficult. However, I did want and need it even back then. For young boys, the answer is probably guiding them at puberty in the right direction before certain patterns get set... if society could ever become so spiritually aware and give up its out-dated ideas of human sexuality!

Sorry, I seem to have gone all over the place in this post, making it part introduction, part on-topic, and partly a segway into a related topic. Yeesh! But it just goes to show how excited I am to have found this place. Once again, thank you!


Honestly, I don't know that much about the exercise recommended above. Maybe someone else will have some thoughts. I feel like I've been learning more about the aspects relating to our mammalian nervous system.

Of course the two (exercises and neurochemistry) are related, but my focus has been on the scientific lingo that's relevant to understanding the ancient ideas a bit better.

It's great that the ideas make some sense to you. In talking to people over the years, I've been amazed to discover that people of all ages can put the ideas to use. Everyone has advantages and disadvantages. Younger folks have livelier "horses" to rein in, but more idealism. Older folks have an easier time with control (unless they've laid down a heavy porn/masturbation rut), but they tend to be less ready to believe in such an unfamiliar approach. It really depends on the person, too. You can ask Hayduke for his perspective. He's one of our younger bloggers at the moment who's playing around with the ideas.

In any case, the goal is restoring clearer perception, not perfection, so people can take the ideas as far as they wish and still benefit.

Hope you find a partner soon! Looking forward to your further thoughts. It would be great to hear if this approach improves your CFS.

Feel free to start your own blog so you can ramble to your heart's content. Wink

Thanks for the warm welcome!

Thanks for the warm welcome! I've already started up my blog, which is strange. I'm on many social networking sites, but never had the inclination to blog. I guess I just didn't have anything to say to the people there, but here is different. Once again thank you for providing such a wonderful place for us to share our process of growth without shame or fear.

I like your approach, trying to find the scientific connection to the ancient ideas. It may indeed lead to further development of them or at least heretofore unattainable levels of understanding, but I'm also glad you are applying what you learn in your own life and relationship. That's the only real way to understand something despite what scholars believe, and that's what I've always found missing in the books I've read so far--the sense that the author has really experienced everything he's writing about.

The original, anonymous poster wondered if participating in oxytocin/bonding/connection behaviors was a way to shift out of dopamine addiction. Do you have any thoughts on this? Based on my experience, I would think that this might not be enough. There are specific triggers when it comes to sex that platonic bonding won't reach. (Though may help!) So then a single person might be stuck with masturbation. I can only speak from the male perspective, however. I'll let you know how my solo experiments go. I hope it works. If I don't masturbate for a week or two, I find myself having more energy (less CFS) but I also get increasingly tense in an emotional/sexual way. It even makes my muscles tense! So far the only way out, after fighting the urge for a few days with it just increasing in intensity, is to let it out, knowing full well that I'll be feeling drained and sometimes depressed after. This is obviously bad enough, but when you have adrenal issues, ejaculation (or better yet, even getting close to it) really needs to be avoided or else you can't heal. Probably any medical condition, I'd think.

As for young people, I guess I'd like to hear the feedback of those who've found this technique while hormones are still raging. I don't know if I could've done it, despite my youthful idealism. The only way back then, if I were motivated, which is yet another story entirely, would be if I had a very motivated girlfriend. Those seem to be hard to come by. All of mine have been regular, orgasm-pursuing types, even if they liked the idea of sexual alchemy in theory. I guess in all of us the procreative, gene-dispersal pattern is just really strong. Luckily, there are other pathways. That idea just helps so much. Otherwise it just feels like fighting an uphill battle. I'd read before that eventually a person'd come to prefer non-orgasmic sex, but I guess it always seemed like propaganda, exaggeration, or wishful thinking. I'm just a scientific type, but I think can be a good thing (when it's not a hindrance). This field of sexual alchemy needs more people like us.

Quote: Finally, I have a

[quote] Finally, I have a similar, related question: I wonder how possible it would be for a young man with raging hormones? It seems like even if I found this site 10-20 years ago, despite my strong interest in sexual chi kung, it would be too difficult. However, I did want and need it even back then. For young boys, the answer is probably guiding them at puberty in the right direction before certain patterns get set... if society could ever become so spiritually aware and give up its out-dated ideas of human sexuality! [/quote]

Hi Tantra11, I can say that in my experience at 22 years old, the ideas of this site still capture me entirely. I cannot speak for all young men, but for me sex was like a train wreck. it was painful because of foreskin complications (phimosis, i've since remedied), it was guilt ridden because of my upbringing and faith, and it was stressful at times not really able to just relax and enjoy it when the pay-off (the O) was so highly sought by both me and my partner, and it was my responsibility to deliver hers before I got off and ruined everything. It made me not really want sex that bad. But I still loved the release of orgasm, so I would still frequently masturbate... a fact that my ex never even knew about.

when I found this website, it was at the height of my porn use. I feel like I have been in a mild state of depression for most of the last two years. Needless to say it, I was more than eager to try out a program which to me automatically felt healthy (no porn use = freer conscience), and I was willing to try it out for a minimum of 15 days. being single, I wasn't committing anyone else to anything... it was pretty easy.

and I loved what happened. within 5 days I could notice small, significant changes... it kept getting better, and I feel like it still gets better even now into 30-some days without a single orgasm. I feel like depression hasn't really been an issue, which is odd because I am in the middle of one of the harshest winters I've seen in Wisconsin. The temperature out there is -18 degrees (-48 w/ windchill). Seasonal depression has been an issue with me for a long time, but here in the dead of winter I feel a general happiness that prevails. its amazing.
getting off the dopamine reward circuit programming has encouraged me to ski more, and be more social. I almost immediately stopped playing video games, just because they ceased to capture my interest anymore.

I'll make one further comment. I am unsure how all this will fit into a new relationship. My thinking right now is that when I meet a girl I am interested in getting to know, I will simply continue to get to know her, and slowly court her - instead of trying to get in her pants, and seeing where things proceed from there. I feel like a women would really appreciate being respected like that, and eventually as things approach sex, I hope there will be a strong relationship base for which the idea of non-orgasmic sex can really appeal.

It would be great for so many reasons to have a partner like that. Whether you're 50, or 15.

the true light of my eyes is a pearl,
equally emptied to equally shine;
and all or what little joy in the world
seemed suddenly simple, and endlessly mine.

Your two-week cycle

is similar to mine. I get the worst "kick" or emotional instability at around the two-week point. Another guy here had the same pattern, and found that if he pushed through the misery of the two-week mark, things began to settle down. The raging cravings (for food, sex, whatever) actually calmed themselves, and he noticed a much stronger desire to connect with others. (Can anyone remember his site name? I'm blanking.)

However, my sense is that it gets more and more important to connect with a mate if one really wants to stabilize over the long haul. Either that, or like Hayduke, you had better be skiing l-o-n-g distances! Wink

I hope there

are some women listening!

However, I'm also going to do my best to get their attention. The new book ( will be distributed by Random House (who do quite a good job), and has already been accepted by a German publisher (for publication in the fall). Also my publisher says it is one of the ten they will promote at international book fairs.

So maybe it will get easier to find knowledgeable mates one of these days...especially outside the porn-drenched USA. Meanwhile, you *can* find ways to share this with prospective sweethearts. There are many tools at this site, depending upon whether your intended is more interested in spiritual stuff or science stuff. Also, most women have had the experience of a lover pulling away after sex, so many find this article convincing:

And, of course, your biggest selling point is that lively, optimistic glow when you haven't thrown away too much of that gorgeous yang energy! Don't give up!

Wow, I guess I never was

Wow, I guess I never was able to push past the two week mark. If circumstance allowed me to prolong my abstinence a bit, I'd usually have a wet dream and figure my body just needed to have its release. I'd reason that if it was going to happen anyway, might as well enjoy it and masturbate. (I don't usually enjoy wet dreams... there's often very little pleasure sensation, just the ejaculation, but the "good side" is that I can usually hold it in much easier than a normal waking ejaculation. Is that weird?)

Well, I've committed to giving this new approach a shot. Hopefully wonderful things will happen after I break through. I'd already abstained a bit before finding this site, so today might be day 7, the time I'd usually be getting all antsy and tense, needing release. The funny thing is, just finding this site seemed to alleviate some of the tension, and tonight was my first not of really doing the various singles practices I found here. So far it seems to be working, though there's still some urge left. Just way less.

Wow, so Hayduke, you were actually able to summon up the necessary will power? I remember in high school, when masturbation was still a daily habit for me, I'd occasionally (probably due to some intuitive sense that orgasm was bad for me.... I had no religious shame of masturbation...) try to abstain, setting my goal for one week. I usually never succeeded. Did it take massive amounts of pounding your head against the wall will power to accomplish what seems to me would be a herculean feat?

i cant recall the color of her eyes, just the shape of her dress

To be honest Tantra, it was hardly an effort at all. I have said elsewhere on this site that I had tried to stop masturbating *many* times before finding reuniting, out of conviction i suppose. Every single time I failed... but that is also because my goal was NEVER AGAIN!!! That kind of goal is doomed, as Marnia mentioned elsewhere, because it sets you up for the "just one last time" mentality. over and over again.

When I came to this site, it was after a friend told me he'd been off ejaculating since september. I was astounded, and did a little research on tantra (That is why he was practicing continence). I found this site, read everything I could, and decided that I would just *try* an experiment. I set a 15 day goal. There were times where it was a conscious effort, but it was really easy somehow. and after I hit 15 days, I extended my goal to Feb. 21st (which is the day of a *huge* ski race for me. 33 miles on xc-skis... I am going to need my testosterone!)

I am unsure at the moment if after my race I will experiment with orgasm. I just really like where I am. I look at life differently, sex much differently, and I no longer ogle every girl I see, drooling over nice booty. (asses do it for me every time. Wink guilty pleasure)
before I started abstaining, if I wasn't viewing porn, I couldn't get a hard-on... i mean, i would have to recall strong mental images, and even that coupled with manual stimulation still wasn't really cutting it.

Now, I can get incredibly hard from just manual stimulation, without any images necessary. Its kind of amazing. I am a cyclist, too... If you think I push myself too far on skis, then what i do on my bike is martyrdom I once rode my bike 12 hours in a single day, traveling 170 miles. I slept on the ground that night, and put on 70 more miles in the morning to get to my sweetheart in MN. I was beginning to think that my bicycling was causing impotence. that is no joke, either. putting on miles like that with constant pressure on the prostate caused temporary impotence for days afterwards. I am pretty happy that I can get good erections again... but its also winter. come cycling season, i wont be able to resist adding miles... I told my last sweetie that if i had to make a permanent choice of the bike or erections, i would choose the bike. she didn't love that idea. :)

I know for other men on this site, giving up masturbation it is a really big struggle. I hope that they can be inspired by my success. I also hope nobody views themselves as failures because it isn't as easy for them to kick the habit. Take heart, and I hope you can get the will to overcome like I have. Its much better on this side of the fence, believe me!

the true light of my eyes is a pearl,
equally emptied to equally shine;
and all or what little joy in the world
seemed suddenly simple, and endlessly mine.

Thanks, Hayduke

for pointing out that the goal is not perfection. It's just finding one's true balance, sense of power and well-being again.

My thought is that ultimately balance is a lot easier with a partner...because, for better or worse, we happen to be pair-bonding mammals, who register a lot of subconscious well-being in close, trusted relationships.

That said, a period of celibacy is often part of the recalibration for many of us. It was for me, too, and although I didn't like it *at all,* I realized that it was retrospect.

My hubby, on the other hand, said he would never have quit masturbating if he hadn't had a sweetheart (who wanted to try this weird idea Wink ). So everyone has a different strategy.


Thanks, this helps me immensely. If you can do it, I can do it! (How's that for masculine competitiveness channelled wisely. Wink ) Now you and I just need to get ourselves girlfriends to explore the higher levels... or maybe check out the yogic path of celibate training for awhile? My feeling is that it might be hard to maintain celibacy unless you do something to to channel the sexual energy or else it might start to want to go back down and out again? Or no? I guess I'm just thinking about the future. I'm not over the hump yet with the dopamine pattern, but I soon will be!

from bonding to sexual

I took a course a while back where she talks about how when you are sexually attracted to someone, you should run!
Marnia talks about this as neurochemicals, but in the course I took, she said "chemistry." It makes sense, we use that word all the time.
"Oh, there was no chemistry with him" "We have great chemistry!" etc
We are all looking for the right chemistry... only to realize now that we don't want chemistry! Bah!

So... how do you be sexual with someone you are not sexually attracted to?

Mostly in life we focus on what doesn't work about situations, people, partners, work, etc.

Find a man you have a strong emotional bond with, and start to look at what IS attractive about him, and ONLY focus on that.
Since what you focus on expands, hopefully, the one or two things you find attractive will grow.

This has worked for me in the past... I met someone I was not at all attracted to, but spent a lot of energy ONLY focusing on what was attractive (in his case it was his calves. Yep. he had nice calves, and that was it!) but soon, it was effortless to find many things attractive about him.

I hope this helps.

What a beautiful post, Jrenee!

Thanks. I think I should start a wiki for this, because it *can* be confusing when you stop picking partners *just* based on those "I could have hot sex with this person easy" vibe, and turn the choice over to some higher part of your brain. Smile