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Title: A Plea for Monogamy
Author: Lay, Wilfrid
Language: English
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                               A PLEA FOR

                           WILFRID LAY, Ph.D.

    Author of _Man’s Unconscious Conflict_, _The Child’s Unconscious
              Mind_, _Man’s Unconscious Passion_ and _Man’s
                          Unconscious Spirit_.


            _O heart! Oh blood that freezes, blood that burns!_
                            _Earth’s returns_
            _For whole centuries of folly, noise and sin!_
                            _Shut them in,_
            _With their triumphs and their glories and the rest,_
                            _Love is best!_

                                       —Browning: Love Among the Ruins.

                           BONI AND LIVERIGHT
                           PUBLISHERS NEW YORK

                          _Copyright, 1923, by_
                        BONI AND LIVERIGHT, INC.


                    First Printing, June, 1923
                    Second Printing, November, 1923
                    Third Printing November, 1924
                    Fourth Printing, February, 1925
                    Fifth Printing, June, 1925
                    Sixth Printing, August, 1925
                    Seventh Printing, January, 1926



    CHAPTER                                                           PAGE

       I. TRUE CONCEPTION OF MARRIAGE                                    1

          § 1 Disproportionate emotional and intellectual
          development, p. 1; § 2 Archaic emotions in marriage, p.
          2; § 3 Charity, p. 3; § 4 The sexual crisis, p. 4; § 5
          Man’s erotic dominance, p. 6; § 6 Misapprehension about
          psychoanalysis, p. 7; § 7 Polymorphous-perverse, p. 11; §
          8 Marriage the only cure, p. 12; § 9 The normal sex life,
          p. 12; § 10 The true sense of “erotic,” p. 13.

      II. MODERN EMOTIONAL UNREST                                       16

          § 11 Discontented wives, p. 16; § 12 Playmates and
          cicisbeos, p. 18; § 13 Wife’s need of playmates is
          husband’s fault, p. 19; § 14 Innovations in this book,
          p. 21; § 15 Home spirit the husband’s creation, p. 22; §
          16 Masculinity and femininity, p. 23; § 17 Virile love,
          p. 24; § 18 Arnold Bennett answered, p. 26; § 19 Love at
          first sight, p. 29; § 20 Mental autoerotism, p. 31; §
          21 Mutuality, p. 32; § 22 Mutuality _vs._ autoerotism,
          p. 35; § 23 Honeymoons and autoerotism, p. 37; § 24
          Barter and _quid pro quo_, p. 39; § 25 Novel result of
          modern technique, p. 42; § 26 Satisfaction _via_ two
          routes, p. 44; § 27 Infant class of husbands, p. 46; § 28
          Autosuggestion in marital life, p. 48; § 29 Hypersomatic
          and hyposomatic, p. 49; § 30 An objection answered, p.
          51; § 31 The idea: “I cannot,” p. 52; § 32 Sedentary
          _vs._ athletic men, p. 53.

     III. EMOTIONS                                                      56

          § 33 Emotions as organic sensations, p. 56; § 34 Men as
          emotional as women, p. 58; § 35 Repression, p. 59; § 36
          Erotic emotion, p. 59; § 37 Woman’s repressed emotions,
          p. 60; § 38 Reassociability, p. 61; § 39 The case of Miss
          F., p. 62; § 40 The case of Mrs. G., p. 63; § 41 Slight
          reassociability of erotic emotion, p. 64.

      IV. INSTINCTS                                                     66

          § 42 Twofold division of instincts, p. 66; § 43 The
          egoistic-social instinct, p. 67; § 44 Comparison
          its essential feature, p. 68; § 45 Evolution of the
          egoistic-social, p. 71; § 46 Plato’s fable, p. 73; §
          47 Completeness of life, p. 75; § 48 Not all sex acts
          are truly erotic, p. 77; § 49 The young man with the
          clandestine affair, p. 78; § 50 Egoistic-social instincts
          over-stressed, p. 82; § 51 Present incipient tendency to
          stress the erotic, p. 83; § 52 Parents’ happy marriage
          necessary to child’s welfare, p. 85; § 53 The best
          parental environment, p. 87; § 54 Marital pattern should
          be seen by children, p. 89; § 55 Instinct in humans
          inadequate, p. 90; § 56 Three fusions in heterosexual
          union, p. 91; § 57 Instinctive reasoning by analogy, p.
          91; § 58 The greatest human happiness comes from the
          three fusions, p. 93; § 59 Instinct of woman expects
          strength in man, p. 93; § 60 Man’s reaction to feminine
          opposition, p. 94; § 61 Visually unattractive women, p.
          95; § 62 The love instinct a bad guide, p. 96; § 63 The
          ductless glands; superiority of the love instinct, p. 97.

       V. THE LOVE EPISODE                                              98

          § 64 Love is control by husband, the work of a lifetime,
          p. 98; § 65 The erotologist, p. 99; § 66 Wife the
          “trembler,” p. 100; § 67 The precipitant husband, p.
          102; § 68 A positive expressive control of her love
          emotions by the wife, p. 103; § 69 The love drama, p.
          104; § 70 Man’s occasional embarrassment, p. 105; § 71
          Unsatisfactoriness of promiscuity, p. 105; § 72 Marriage
          as an examination of man by woman, p. 107; § 73 Man’s
          failure to charm, p. 108; § 74 The love episode, p. 109;
          § 75 Its extent, p. 110; § 76 Sign of fusion, p. 111; §
          77 Test of happiness, p. 112; § 78 “The Secret Places
          of the Heart,” p. 113; § 79 The Islet, p. 113; § 80
          Reflections, p. 118; § 81 The Ocean Shore, p. 121; § 82
          Taking a woman’s all, p. 123; § 83 Erotic episode like
          carving a statue, p. 124; § 84 Love episode only a step
          in development, p. 124; § 85 Don Juanism’s fallacy, p.
          125; § 86 Phantasy of exhaustion, p. 126; § 87 Woman’s
          infinite variety, p. 126; § 88 Union complete, total and
          exclusive, p. 128; § 89 Taking a woman’s body, p. 128; §
          90 Woman’s right to acme, p. 130; § 91 Consciousness of
          desire, p. 131; § 92 Woman’s helpless plight, p. 132; §
          93 The wife as complementary body, p. 133; § 94 Poverty
          of emotional development, p. 133; § 95 Energy liberated
          by erotism, p. 135; § 96 Preparation of the wife, p.
          136; § 97 Sufficient time to be given to it, p. 137; §
          98 The estrus and its psychological analogue, p. 138;
          § 99 Futility of average love episodes, p. 139; § 100
          Karezza, etc., p. 140; § 101 Their extraordinary result,
          p. 141; § 102 Their undeniable difficulty, p. 142; § 103
          Uselessness of attempting to confine the love impulse,
          p. 144; § 104 Substitution of vicarious activities, p.
          145; § 105 Karezza compared to the Steinach operation,
          p. 145; § 106 Karezza does not frustrate all emotional
          relaxation, p. 146; § 107 Wife’s desire to be dominated
          erotically, p. 148; § 108 Wife-domination not effected by
          egoistic-social devotion, p. 149; § 109 Marital relations
          cannot be too truly erotic, p. 151; § 110 Woman’s erotic
          relaxation necessary, p. 151; § 111 Simultaneity, p.
          153; § 112 Autoerotism of the honeymoon, p. 154; § 113
          The succession plan, p. 155; § 114 It demonstrates the
          husband’s erotic control, p. 155; § 115 It insures the
          basis of a happy marriage, p. 157; § 116 Autosuggestion,
          p. 159; § 117 Means of securing control, p. 160; § 118
          The love pattern an individual matter, p. 161; § 119
          Fetishism, p. 162; § 120 Illustrations, p. 163; § 121 The
          wife’s unconscious attempt to hurry the husband, p. 165;
          § 122 The mountain climbing, p. 165; § 123 The view at
          the top, p. 166; § 124 The detail of the peak, p. 168; §
          125 Reflections at the top, p. 169; § 126 Accelerating
          fetishisms, p. 170; § 127 Climbing together, p. 171.

      VI. CONTROL                                                      175

          § 128 Evolution of erotic over egoistic-social;
          individuality and control, p. 175; § 129 Erotic control
          is the only real individuality, p. 178; § 130 The
          conventional demand, p. 179; § 131 Love impulse the only
          thing left, p. 181; § 132 Control is not annihilation,
          p. 182; § 133 Difference between man’s and woman’s
          control, p. 183; § 134 Man’s lack of erotic control
          unnecessary, p. 184; § 135 Woman’s inability to control
          erotically, p. 186; § 136 Phantasy of honeymoon bliss;
          the test, p. 187; § 137 Women’s confusion of the two
          controls, p. 190; § 138 Woman’s development dependent on
          husband’s, p. 192; § 139 Woman’s acme not conditioned
          by husband’s, p. 193; § 140 Insensitiveness, p. 193; §
          141 Anesthesia, p. 195; § 142 Supremity of male control
          misunderstood, p. 195; § 143 Objection answered, p. 196;
          § 144 Interplay of control on egoistic-social level, p.
          197; § 145 Fallacy of erotic control by woman, p. 198; §
          146 Prolongation of love episode, p. 201; § 147 Failure
          of illicit unerotic sex act to relax erotic tension,
          p. 203; § 148 Development of husband imperative, p.
          205; § 149 Precipitancy caused by fear, p. 206; § 150
          Woman’s instinctive attempt to accelerate, p. 209; § 151
          Her unconscious man-testing, p. 211; § 152 The wrong
          instinctive reaction of the husband to the test, p. 212;
          § 153 Man should know what to expect, p. 214; § 154
          Responsibility _vs._ Fate, p. 216; § 155 The husband’s
          hallucination, p. 217; § 156 The solitariness of crowds,
          p. 219; § 157 The wife’s unavoidable resistance, p. 221;
          § 158 Bride buried under stones, p. 222; § 159 The only
          truly virile accomplishment, p. 224; § 160 The husband’s
          anesthesia, p. 224; § 161 Metonymy, the part for the
          whole, p. 225; § 162 Phantasy, p. 226; § 163 Control
          through imagination, p. 228; § 164 A score of sense
          qualities, p. 229; § 165 Manner of mental influence, p.
          231; § 166 The work of the mental pattern, p. 231; § 167
          Need of a love pattern, p. 232; § 168 Completing the
          fragmentary wife, p. 233; § 169 More vividness for women,
          p. 234.

     VII. THE UNHAPPY MARRIAGE                                         236

          § 170 Overweighting physical or spiritual, p. 236; § 171
          Feeling of identity, p. 237; § 172 Erotic control only
          a part, p. 239; § 173 Long engagements unnecessary, p.
          239; § 174 Changing adaptation needed, p. 240; § 175
          Love cannot be delegated, p. 241; § 176 Unconscious
          polyandry, p. 242; § 177 Masochism, p. 243; § 178 Illicit
          love enhances erotic element for some women, p. 245; §
          179 Freud on promiscuous men, p. 246; § 180 Erotism not
          masochistic, p. 247; § 181 Jealousy in men and women,
          p. 248; § 182 Mrs. Samuel Pepys, p. 249; § 183 Jealousy
          atavistic, p. 250; § 184 Jealousy and homosexuality, p.
          251; § 185 Hyposomatic sex is not true erotism, p. 253; §
          186 Résumé of Chapters I to VII, p. 255.

    VIII. HOLOGAMY VS. PROSTITUTION                                    259

          § 187 Hologamy defined, p. 259; § 188 Erotic as manned
          and womaned, p. 260; § 189 Comparative monogamy, p.
          262; § 190 Health demands unity of personality, p.
          263; § 191 Plurality of women a dissociating element,
          p. 264; § 192 Plurality as a search, p. 267; § 193
          Prostitution, p. 268; § 194 Two castes of women, p. 269;
          § 195 The mother-imago or angel imago, p. 271; § 196 More
          passion needed in marriage, p. 272; § 197 Futility of
          prohibition, p. 273; § 198 Ellis’ “civilization value of
          prostitution” answered, p. 274.

      IX. THE NEW MARRIAGE                                             276

          § 199 Two meanings of “single standard,” p. 276; § 200
          What constitutes mastery, p. 277; § 201 Disappointments
          in marriage, p. 279; § 202 The father’s part in the home,
          p. 280; § 203 An illustration, p. 283; § 204 Management
          of children an egoistic-social activity, p. 284; § 204
          New man and new woman not to confuse egoistic-social and
          erotic levels, p. 286; § 206 Prodigality of nature, p.
          287; § 207 Trial marriage and romantic marriage, p. 289;
          § 208 Rapport, p. 290; § 209 Erotic unions, p. 292; §
          210 Virginity, p. 292; § 211 Unconscious resentment of
          bride, p. 293; § 212 Futility of extra-marital liaisons,
          p. 294; § 213 Conclusion, p. 297.

       X. BIRTH CONTROL                                                298

          § 214 Ready to print but cannot legally be printed, p.

          INDEX                                                        301




    Common sense indicates, happiness and health demand, science
    proclaims and society is beginning to insist that men and women
    understand and apply the palpable truth of the sex relations in
    their married life.—DR. W. F. ROBIE.

§ 1

We are living in an age when the contrast between intellectual complexity
and emotional simplicity is becoming so great that the emotional
reactions and, because of them, the creative and destructive acts
of men are more and more unpredictable and variegated. Intellectual
attainment has reached an extraordinary height. Emotions have not been
trained or developed, if indeed they are capable of development. They
may not be, though it will be assumed in a later chapter that they are
susceptible of the kind of training that is produced by reassociation.
Emotions are the organic sensations perceived by the ego as the result
of reactions, caused by impressions from the external world, reactions
taking place within the tissues of the body, and associated with external
impressions. Emotions are no more complex than they were thousands of
years ago.

When we say that the emotions of one man are finer than those of another
man we may mean either that he has repressed his sexual emotions, which
we have not been taught to call fine, or that his emotions of surprise,
awe, love, hate, jealousy and others are aroused by, that is, associated
with, more complicated external impressions than they are in another
man. Or we may call fine emotions the constructive emotions with which
pleasure is associated.

The emotions as physical reactions have not changed in ages of evolution.
We have the same bodies as sounding boards on which the external
impressions reverberate, the same bodies practically that men had five
thousand years ago. But the number and variety of external experiences
has multiplied in geometrical ratio. The result is that, while
intellectually we are men of 1923, emotionally we may be cave men or
apes. With the products of modern civilization, the material advances and
complications, the means of intercommunication, of graphic representation
and of the transformation of natural resources we are, as Robinson says
in _The Mind in the Making_, merely _monkeying_. In spite of numerous
sporadic beginnings in the line of social use of the results of modern
scientific advancement we are as a race making almost no progress in the
direction of fine living.

§ 2

This is no more clearly evident in any other sphere of life than in
marriage. With all the intellectual progress made by humanity up to the
first quarter of the twentieth century marriage is still looked upon by
many men merely as an opportunity for either legitimized procreation
or unlimited sensual self-gratification. A man puts as much intellect
into his vocation as he is capable of. Into his marriage he puts not
intellect, but the emotions of the ancestral ape. Even in his sublimated
war of business he knows that a consideration of the other fellow is in
the end a winning card, and the word “service” has come into prominence
as advertising material. But in his marriage he uses the same crassly
selfish methods he has used for thousands, perhaps millions of years.

The sheer blind, isolating selfishness of the average husband and the
misery it causes him are the reason for my writing this book. If a man
used one-tenth the intellect in his marital relations that he does in his
corporation finance and in his inventions and scientific research, the
latter would not be half as necessary as they seem to be, and he would
himself be infinitely happier.

§ 3

Unless we are progressing toward a woman-made social order it is
imperative that men carry on to a logical conclusion what they have begun.

“Charity begins at home” is one of the many maxims that were originated
with a far different connotation from that which they have since
acquired. Charity (Latin _Caritas_) originally meant “dearness” or
“fondness” and once had an erotic flavour that it has since lost. The
only place for sexual love is in marriage and its having escaped from
this, like a captured thing, reflects not so much on itself as on the
unnaturalness of its captivity. True erotism has practically fled from
most marriages, leaving only an empty shell. Men should reflect that
nothing is more necessary for the upbuilding of a real civilization
than the personal lives of the individuals themselves. Penetratingly
thoughtful men realize that the present state of civilization is diseased
throughout, and that it “is not in our stars but in ourselves,” that we
are to rely for advance.

§ 4

In this book an attempt is made to show how men can so control their
marital situation as to make more and more unnecessary the tightness of
the bond that operates to make many marriages so like an imprisonment for
both husbands and wives. Also the suggestion is made that a certain type
of action on the husband’s part will work in the direction of making both
prostitution and divorce less and less necessary.

This type of behaviour, comparatively rare at the present time, is based
on a pattern that will at once appeal to the sense of justice innate in
every man. Although it implies a relaxation of much present constraint
and artificiality in the married relation, it is in no sense antagonistic
to true monogamous union but rather constitutes a much more advanced and
progressive attitude toward the most vital question of the day.

The marriage of the near future, it is hoped, will be inspired by our
latest scientific knowledge concerning the psychology of sex, including
the ever present unconscious factor, which is the most potent factor in
the marital situation and which has been necessarily ignored for the
simple reason that, previous to a few years ago, everyone was ignorant of
the unconscious mechanisms and their relation to each other, in making
for mistakes and unhappiness in marital behaviour.

If every man would exercise the control over himself (the opposite of
asceticism in the ordinarily accepted sense), the control which alone
will secure that emotional ascendancy over his wife, necessary for happy
marriage and unconsciously longed for by the wife, more than any other
thing in marital life, he will reduce to the lowest possible frequency
both divorce, which is the issue of so many marriages, and prostitution,
which has for so many centuries been regarded as the bulwark of marriage
and the protection of the wife.

As Grete Meisel-Hess says in her _Sexual Crisis_, “The happy marriage of
the securely placed wife is founded upon the degradation and debasement
of another woman, the prostitute”; and Havelock Ellis in the sixth volume
of his _Psychology of Sex_ (page 296) says that “the value of marriage
as a moral agent is evidenced by the fact that all the better-class
prostitutes in London are almost entirely supported by married men,”
while “in Germany, as stated in the interesting series of reminiscences
by a former prostitute, the majority of the men who visit prostitutes are
married.” He then gives several reasons why this is the case.

If every wife should give serious thought to exactly how much degradation
the prostitute has been considered to save her from, she would realize
that what the prostitute guards her from could be transmuted by the
proper attitude on the husband’s part from a crassly physical into a
highly spiritual thing. And she would move heaven and earth to induce her
husband to study the fine art of love in so thorough a manner that there
could be no doubt of the happy issue of their mutual love life.

Critics of marriage as it exists today have amply demonstrated that it
shields more immorality, in some cases, than even prostitution itself;
and it is a fact that this immorality comes from a lack of spiritual
rapport between husband and wife, that can be effected primarily, if not
solely, by the husband.

§ 5

While this book assumes that the marital relation is one in which an
emotional control is necessary to be exercised by the husband over the
wife, it does not assume for a moment but rather denies that the husband
should exert any control whatever over the activities of the wife,
especially in spheres other than the strictly conjugal.

On the contrary, a husband domineers in small every-day matters only
when, and because, he feels unconsciously that he is failing, or is
beginning to fail, to dominate in the great and important sphere of
woman’s emotional life.

For the health and happiness of them both, this sphere should be the love
emotions; at any rate, only the constructive or anabolic emotions. A
husband who rightly dominates need not and will not trouble to domineer.
If the wife is as profoundly moved erotically by marriage as she should
be this deep emotion will impel her to develop her personality to the
utmost for the advantage of her husband and, _a fortiori_, of herself.

It should always be borne in mind by both husband and wife that the love
impulse is uniformly to take precedence over the ego (social) impulse, a
precedence that, however, in our present competitive society it is very
difficult to give. But it is worth every thought that can be devoted to
it; to refine the pattern, to ennoble the picture, of marital life.

§ 6

A common misapprehension that psychoanalysis leads to promiscuity in
sexual relations needs emphatic correction. The reasoning wrested out
of psychoanalytical findings runs somewhat as follows: Most modern ills
and notably neurotic disturbances, mild and severe, are the result of
the repression brought to bear on the sex instinct by modern civilized
life. Therefore, in order to avoid or cure these multitudinous ills, the
individual whose natural instincts have been repressed, must dig them
up, with great toil and at great expense of time and money, and give
them free play in spite of the prohibitions of society. Indeed, in this
country, psychoanalysts, of the first rank in other respects, have been
said to recommend both men and women patients to make what arrangements
they could to indulge in sexual intercourse, even if unmarried.[1]

Now fully admitting that the mental and physical troubles of these
patients, and all others who suffer from ills of psychic origin, arise
from the repression of the sexual instinct, it still shows a far too
great tendency on the part of their advisers to temporize and compromise
with facts, if they give this advice. For, while a conflict between
two forces, one or both of which were in the unconscious, is more
satisfactorily and successfully carried on if the two forces are brought
out into the open light of consciousness, the conflict still remains, and
is only shifted to another field where it may go on as before, and with
unabated fierceness.

The conflict between the individual and society is just as great whether
a man takes it out in himself through a neurosis or gives up the neurosis
and takes a prostitute or a regular mistress, neither of which has the
sanction of society. In the case of many neurotics the cure is worse than
the disease simply because the social pressure becomes clearer to the
individual if he actually does, even in secret, the things he had before
only unconsciously wished. For him the conflict not only is not resolved
but is worse, for if like the majority of neurotics he is of a more
sensitive type than the average person the contrast between his actions
and the implicit demands of his environment will be all the greater.
He will be doing in reality the very thing he unconsciously desired but
feared to do.

And yet not the same thing after all. For unless the mistress is of that
rare and extraordinary type of Mlle. Drouet who supplied for Victor Hugo
what he would have much preferred to get from his wife, had she been
spiritually able to give it, there will be, for the unfortunately advised
neurotic, another conflict not on an ethical but on an intellectual and
spiritual plane.

The advice for such people can only be to get married; or, if that
is beyond the bounds of possibility, which is seldom the case, the
suggestion to adopt a moderate autoerotism has been made by some
physicians in good standing as an acceptable substitute at least for the
neurotic of either sex. It frees them, at any rate, from the feeling that
they are injuring anyone else, either directly or indirectly.

An emphatic reiteration is here appropriate concerning the harmlessness
of the physical forms of autoerotism as practised, at some times in
their lives, by almost nine-tenths of humanity of both sexes, especially
civilized humanity, where a taboo is placed on other normal heterosexual
practices. The autoerotism mentioned (in sections 21-25 on mutuality) is
purely a psychical intellectual or mental autoerotism entirely apart from
the physical. Its results are, in the long run, far worse. (See note, p.

Grete Meisel-Hess, in _The Sexual Crisis_, speaking of the men who are
sexual compulsion neurotics and whom she describes as male counterparts
of the _demi-vierges_, says (page 155): “They are unable to surmount the
ultimate obstacle between I and Thou. They are unable to complete their
work, incompetent to possess a woman utterly. The amatory intimacies
are never fully consummated. They get through the preliminaries of
love and the first preludes; but that which comes afterward, the
most beautiful and also the most difficult part, remains unenjoyed,
unmastered, unconsummated. I am not referring here to what is ordinarily
termed impotence. This sentimental impotence has nothing to do with
mere physical weakness, but is far more disastrous, since it forever
bars those affected with it from an entry into the deepest experiences
of love. It is only the strong in soul who are capable of love in its

The physical autoerotic acts, far from having the results of producing
physical and mental weakness (as has been unscientifically stated and
slavishly repeated for two centuries), are nature’s way of developing
the reproductive apparatus for strictly human use. The injuries supposed
to result are now scientifically proven to be the result caused by the
fear of harm, and the shame inspired in young people by stupidly ignorant

The autoerotic mental attitude described in this section is a peculiarity
of men who through lack of enlightenment have not yet outgrown a tendency
to remain, in their psychic reactions, infantile or puerile. But there
is no proof that the inevitably autoerotic attitude of the young need
persist for a moment after they have grasped the idea of the difference
between autoerotism and a real object love that contains the growing
element of perfect mutuality. And yet many men unnecessarily get the
idea fixed in their minds that autoerotic practices have weakened them
physically or have produced a mental habit of mind that cannot be broken.
From one point of view it is the easiest thing in the world to present
the proofs of the utter harmlessness of the autoerotic practices and the
utter groundlessness of the fears which make almost every man, that is
human, lack the confidence which will give him the necessary control over
his own, and incidentally over his wife’s, erotism. (See note, p. 14.)

§ 7

The recommendation to the neurotic patient to take up clandestine sex
relationship is based on the same misinterpretation of psychoanalytic
theory that is seen in the explanation given by shallow, self-styled
psychoanalysts of Freud’s term “polymorphous perverse” as applied to the
sexuality of children. _Polymorphous_ means “of many shapes or patterns,”
and implies that a child gets as much pleasure and satisfaction from
stimulation of any one of its “erogenous zones” as it does from any other
including the genital. This is quite easily comprehensible from the point
of view that the child’s sexuality, like the unassembled parts of an
automobile, is synthetized at puberty under the “primacy of the genital
zones” whereupon all the pleasures of stimulation of all the other zones
serve only as preliminaries to that of the genital.

And the word _perverse_ in its etymological significance means only
“turned in all directions,” i.e., as much toward one zone as to another.
But the word perverse in its ordinary sense has the connotation of moral

It would be as senseless to call a child’s interest in its skin, and
pleasure in sucking its thumb or a piece of candy, perverse in this
latter sense as it would be to call a ring gear of a differential
_wicked_ just because it was lying on the floor of a garage, and the
mechanic had not yet put it in place.

Thus has Freud been misinterpreted and the good of all his fearless
investigation into sexual life annulled by the shortsighted and ignorant
misreading of his work on the part of so many of those who would call
themselves his followers.

§ 8

Only marriage and only a pure and complete monogamy without anesthesia[2]
on the part of either mate will satisfy both conscious and unconscious
cravings of the neurotic. It is a great advantage to have these
unconscious cravings introduced into consciousness if for the only
reason of giving a greater self-knowledge and therefore a greater

Not only all conscious and unconscious love cravings can, but all should
be satisfied in every marriage from the beginning of it all through to
the end of it. By the majority of healthy people they should be given
conscious expression by both mates much more frequently than they
actually are.

§ 9

So many unhappily married people ask, “What, Doctor, _is_ a normal sex
life?” It is generally considered by all authorities that individuals
vary to such an extent that it is impossible to lay down any rule except
that in the normal sex life the conscious outward expression should never
take place except when it is a mutual and reciprocal expression, and
that, on these conditions, no limits that could be called normal really

But the attitude of this book is that the mutuality is largely if not
entirely the result of the husband’s love-making. In the ideal marriage
he is and always should be the leading factor in the exclusively erotic

§ 10

Every use of the term erotic episode or love episode or love drama, is
to be understood as emphatically affirming the indispensability of an
equal emphasis on both the so-called physical and the so-called mental
or spiritual factor of the love life, neither one nor the other omitted,
neither one nor the other unduly overweighted.

We are minds or souls inhabiting or, better, organically connected with
bodies. Everyone knows the body cannot be neglected any more than the
mind. But the most mental of the bodily reactions and the most bodily
of the mental reactions are the emotions; and as far as present-day
physiological researches have been able to discover, both are most
closely interrelated by the interlocking system of ductless glands, among
which the interstitial or sexual glands are the grand president of all
the boards of directors.[3]

Tradition first, in classical Greek and Roman times, unduly overweighted
the physical end and, in modern times, has attempted unduly to overweight
the spiritual end of the balance, but neither of these processes
has restored a balance which is fundamental to the highest type of
Christianity—the balance between the erotic[4] and the egoistic-social
trends.[5] This balance it is the object of this book to suggest, with
the hope that such an approach to equilibrium of two tendencies that are
now badly out of balance will help to show the futility of much activity
that is now called civilized, but which is not most adapted to producing
the greatest happiness of the individual, and through that, the greatest
prosperity of such people as are destined by happiness and prosperity to
survive the crumbling of the present state of society.


_What? Every pair in every marriage attain absolute bliss in every love
episode? Do you mean to tell me that the rose mist of dawn lasts through
the entire day?_

Of course, why not? Should one expect every day to be cloudy? Must we
expect our lives to be unhappy? Is it wholesome to live in an atmosphere
of tragedy? Not to have perfect married love is to act lower than the
animals—to have abolished instinct, by which they act, and not to have
attained knowledge, according to which are regulated the acts of all
adepts in the art of love.


_What? Do you mean to tell me that every married couple do not go through
the same perfect type of love episode we do every day or two? Why, we
have never had anything else from the very first and supposed, of course,
everybody else was exactly like us._

Of course, they do not. You see how people _look_, don’t you, after a few
years of marriage?



    Let me not to the marriage of true minds
    Admit impediments. Love is not love
    Which alters when it alteration finds.

               SHAKESPEARE, _Sonnet_ CXVI.

§ 11

This book is written largely in the hope that the thousands of unhappy
married women, and the unmarried too, as fate sometimes suddenly and
unexpectedly finds them a partner, will, in reading it, realize what is
making them so restless and discontented.

In the past few years all interested observers of social phenomena have
been appalled at the lightness with which a great majority of the upper
middle classes regard matrimony.

Intelligent women, readers of good books, and themselves often friends
of authors, artists, musicians, and other creative personalities are
all absorbed in the most vital topics of the day, chief of which is the
discussion of the normal adjustment of the sex relation. Indeed, it has
been charged that both women and men in this stratum of society talk
sex _ad nauseam_. This is likely to continue until the much desired
adjustment is better made than it is at present.

The cause of this concentration upon sex problems can be only the
fact that sex is a problem. If our sexual standards were fixed in a
universally serviceable pattern such that changing external conditions
did not almost hourly tend to make it antiquated and useless, the
attention of so large a proportion of civilized humanity need not be
given to it in the present-day excited manner.

It is, of course, a question whether sexual problems can ever be
permanently solved; but those in the focus of public attention today are
so insistent that it is impossible to ignore them. Various solutions are
being attempted more or less secretly where public opinion’s ban on sex
discussion is stronger; less secretly elsewhere.

But a pattern of sexual behaviour, a true love pattern, even if it
could not be final should have at least enough elasticity to make the
changes in it a gradual transition. No sensational innovations can ever
hope to be adopted overnight with the approval of society at large. In
fact, conventions in other spheres than those of love are made, and have
been made gradually for centuries. But it is a curious fact that the
conventionalities which concern the expression of the erotic impulse are
those not of yesterday but of many hundreds of years ago. This is but a
manifestation of the extreme complication of the external circumstances
of modern life in contrast with the wonderful simplicity and directness
of the emotions themselves which reverberate in response to the external

It will appear, as this discussion proceeds, that the sexual problems
of today are conditioned by the inhibitions placed by modern economic
conditions upon the natural and instinctive expression of the erotic
impulse. In brief, both men and women talk sex and particularly women,
in a certain extensive class of society, for the real though disguised
purpose of exciting themselves sexually.

There is every satisfactory proof that this would not occur if their
sexual lives were normal. It is therefore the repressed sexual activity
that breaks out, not in sexual acts specifically, but in the vicarious
sex activity of problem novels, problem plays, risqué stories, and the
talk in mixed company which has been objected to as persistent sex talk.

Men and women with a perfectly normal love life feel no need whatever
to talk about it. But the inference from that—namely, that those who
resolutely refrain from mention of all such topics are themselves
quite normal in their own love life—is illogical in the extreme. Many
are constrained by an inner fear of self-revelation, lest they show
themselves as abnormal. Thus it may occur that some will not refuse to
discuss this most vital of all topics, for fear they may be considered
themselves abnormal.

But it is safe to say that the greater number of those who talk much
about love are those whose love is either undeveloped or in some way
awry, and that unconsciously they are attempting to straighten themselves
out, in their own eyes or in the eyes of their friends.

§ 12

The most exciting conversation on love is, of course, that between two
persons of opposite sex. And in many social circles there has of late
sprung up a new term. A married woman will have some particular male
friend not her husband, whom she laughingly refers to as her “playmate.”
With this “mate” she plays at love and love-making under the guise of
serious discussion. In some coteries, the married woman’s playmate may
be some other woman’s husband, but the favourites for playmates are
unmarried men.[6]

These “little beaux” or “playmates” are an indication of the essential
childishness of the marriage relation where they play a part, and the
position of the husband whose wife needs such amusement is an exceedingly
unenviable one, no matter how purely Platonic the relation may be between
his wife and her playmate.

§ 13

It will be consistently maintained in this book that the need of such
Platonic friendships on the part of these numerous wives is a reflection
on the lack of skill with which the husband handles the erotic situation.
He may not be, often, indeed, is not, in the least to blame for his
lack of skill, or for the discontent of his wife that causes her to
give expression to the play side of love, or, even a part of it, in
this taking of a playmate. It is a situation which practically calls
the husband a workmate, or dutymate—a situation that is fundamentally
deplorable and constitutes in fact the first step in the direction of

The playmates provide a large amount of innocent amusement, which the
husbands do not or cannot find time possibly to furnish themselves. With
the playmates the wives go to lunches, dances, theatres, concerts, and
talk poetry, art, music—and love.

All the evidence points to the fact that these wives are not properly
mated. It is not their fault. It is their husbands’, yet, because of the
husbands’ ignorance of the love needs of women, the husbands are not to
blame, at any rate until they have taken to heart the message which this
book attempts to convey.

Possibly the wives themselves, after thinking the matter over in the
light of what they may read in this book, might talk to their husbands
about love now as perhaps once they did, and get them to realize what
they are failing to do.

Seeking intellectual stimulation from a playmate whose tenure of office
is permanent or nearly so is, as psychoanalysis has amply demonstrated,
a substitute or vicariate for sex. The women are, but of course
unconsciously, wishing for more extended and more intimate love episodes
with their playmates.

In short, restlessness of wives is an expression of the exclusively
economic trend of present-day civilization which makes a machine or an
office organization or a financial manipulation a substitute, in the mind
of the husband, for love. Such a man is most likely to take his business
home with him, where indeed business has no place—even, indeed, take it
to bed with him.

§ 14

The writer is aware of the unprecedented character of much that has
just been said, but feels that he knows whereof he speaks, also of the
revolutionary nature of the theses of the rest of this chapter in which
the subsequent matter of the book is given in outline.

First, the statement that what is popularly known as romantic love has
little if any significance in true marriage. For it will be maintained
consistently that given a not too impossible combination of man and
woman, as for example those of too widely divergent social level, any
man can woo and win any woman and make her and himself supremely happy,
entirely apart from the neurotic sentimentality of romanticism.

The theory that there is just one woman in the world who can make a given
man a perfect wife, and vice versa, is scientifically absurd, for there
is only an infinitesimal chance that these two should ever meet. Many
useless tears have been shed by men and women alike over these “ships
that pass in the night,” and thus frustrate what might have been supernal

Concerning the marital relation, a common sense view raised to scientific
proportions, shows incontrovertibly that married happiness is a creation
of the married people themselves and chiefly of the husband. More in
every way depends on him than on the woman. As pointed out by Meisel-Hess
the “sexual crisis” of the present day is due to the failure of the
individual man to know how to play, and to play acceptably, his part in
married life.

Indeed, we may go so far as to say with absolute confidence that if a
Pacific liner should lose its way and ground on a desert island, the
thousand or so men and women passengers, supposing they were all young
and unmarried, could put their names on slips of paper in a box, and,
knowing that they were doomed to remain on the island for the rest of
their lives, draw lots for partners and become infinitely more happily
married lovers than the average married couple in civilization and quite
as happy as if they had followed conscious preference.

But the stipulation is made that the five hundred men at least must be
adepts in the erotic technique.

That is to say that the real happiness of a marriage depends solely on
the behaviour of the husband, consciously planned intelligent knowledge
of what a real marriage implies.

§ 15

It will be shown in the subsequent chapters that the aim of marriage is
not, as the reiterated phrase in Hutchinson’s novel, _This Freedom_, “men
that marry for a home” might imply, to make the husband happy. It is,
on the contrary, to make the woman happy, and the children, so that the
marriages of the future may be happier than those of the present.

It will be shown that the husband not only can, if he knows how, but
must, if he wishes to be happy himself, first see to it that discontent
is an unknown thing. It is in his hands solely. His wife has practically
nothing to do with it. The dependence of the woman on the man for erotic
life is as absolute as that of the newborn infant on the mother for

The concept of romantic love, like that of love at first sight, contains
the implication that love and especially married love depends more upon
what Fate or Destiny vouchsafes to the man than upon what he takes from
Fate or creates for himself. The taking and creating is certainly the
prerogative of the man while yet it may not necessarily belong to the

§ 16

That is the essential difference between the masculine and the feminine
nature. It is masculine to give and to create and to change external
reality. It is feminine to receive, and to respond to the activity of the
male. It is feminine to be thrilled at the effects produced upon the wife
by her husband’s activities in every sphere of action. It is masculine
to be thrilled only by the resultant ecstasies of the wife. It is not
masculine to be emotionally impressed except by the results of his own
individual and particular actions: results effected in other persons and

This is the essential masculinity and femininity assumed in this book.
It will be evident to those acquainted with modern psychology that the
reverse of these conditions implies the interchange of masculine and
feminine psychic natures.

For example the man who should (and yet not a few do) derive his
satisfactions solely from the emotions aroused in him by the actions of
other persons and things is not truly masculine. His love could not in
any real sense be called virile.

§ 17

Virile love is the only love that a man should have—the only feeling a
real man _can_ have—for a woman. Indeed, it is the only way a man loves
a woman if he is truly to be said to _love_ her. Any so-called love
depending on being charmed by a woman is essentially effeminate, not
virile. The moment he surrenders to her _charm_, he is not a man but an
autoerotic[7] child. _He_ should absolutely and positively charm _her_.
There is no disgrace, no lack of true femininity in a woman’s yielding
to the power a man must exercise over her erotic instincts. The power is
strictly a one-way power, exerted by the man upon the woman if, and only
as long as, he remains man and she remains woman. The bisexual nature of
both man and woman often permits a couple to reverse this direction of
power influence.[8]

If the wife’s charm is the only binding factor in a marriage the marriage
is doomed to dissolve actually or potentially. And in order to maintain
this merely superficial charm, which no real man needs to feel in a
woman, she is obliged to resort to all varieties of artifice from the
lip stick and the exotic perfume upward to the forced attempt to be
intellectually frank and interesting. Woman as woman has no need for this
artifice to maintain charm for primordial man.

It may be that man at the present day is not primordial superficially.
But fundamentally he is and so is woman primordial woman, and for all the
civilization which is only conscious, the ninety per cent more or less
of unconscious action and being in the man acts upon and is inevitably
and automatically reacted to by the woman; and any survey of the totality
of the relations between them is incomplete if it does not recognize
and control the almost unlimited energy of the primordial man and woman
beneath the surface. The difficulty is that this recognition is a task;
and most married couples attempt to hide it both from themselves and
from each other. In such actions of the woman as are dominated, as most
conscious acts are, by the egoistic-social[9] impulse, any artifice,
great or small, as the case may be, is inevitably registered, to the
woman’s detriment, in the unconscious records of the man.

“Does she,” the unconscious says, “really _need_ these embellishments,
or does she only _think_ she needs them? If she really needs them, I
have reels of mental moving pictures of women who do not. If she only
thinks so, what have I failed to do that should inspire her confidence,
or prevent her from unconsciously trying to attract the autoerotic
glances of other men? I must adjust her up to a greater height of erotic
exaltation. Possibly that is the fundamental reason. If she were actually
my erotic counterpart the idea would not even unconsciously enter her
mind to improve herself in this showy manner. I must remove this tendency
from her.”

Of course the husband likes to have his wife appear attractive to him;
but that does not require any branch of the cosmetic art except what
she can do without drugs, pastes, powders and other mechanical aids. Of
course he wants her to interest him mentally but that does not require
her to do or say anything spectacular or anything that has any “news

In her own femininity (which by the way is never enhanced but only
lessened by strenuous efforts to appear charming either to himself or
others), he has the field which he can, and will, in proportion to his
psychic virility, cultivate into his own particular Garden of Eden. In
her own essential womanliness he has the ground where he can plant and
build, without external aid, the garden and the mansion, the work of his
own hands, according to his own design, the outward expression of all
that is fine and masculine in his own imagination. Any failure in the
execution of this plan is due to the shaking of his own hand, the lack of
attention on his own part to the necessary details.

§ 18

Arnold Bennett (in _Pictorial Review_, November 1922), writes: “She
absolutely must exercise charm, whether things are going right or going
wrong.... Women were born to exercise charm.... A large proportion of
women, especially pretty ones, suffer from the illusion that in order to
exercise charm they need only continue to exist. A mistake! To exercise
charm is an active and not a passive function. It cannot be efficiently
done without thought and hard work. It is sometimes very trying and
exhausting, like earning money—but it is not less essential than earning
money if life is to be fully lived.”

Many women prefer to earn money rather than follow this unremunerative
trade of exercising charm; because they realize that earning money is
productive and exercising charm is not. They can get in dollars a measure
of their efforts. In personal charm, however, there is no measurable
factor, except in reaction on the male, and that is an autoerotic element
in his mental make-up.

Feminine charm is to be sure active and not passive. It is, however,
reactive and not spontaneously active. It reacts to the positive action
of the man, which is the response characteristic of true femininity
anywhere, any time. As to its necessitating thought and hard work and
being trying and exhausting, the contrary is the truth. No man can
but dislike a woman who has thought and worked hard, been tried and
become _exhausted_ by this thoroughly artificial and unnatural attempt
to “exercise charm.” His unconscious and real reaction to this trying
position into which the woman puts herself to retain his affection by
exercising charm is one of revolt. He may not know it but it is there all
the time, and comes out in the unhappy moments.

And this attempt recommended by Mr. Bennett is only a superficial
attempt. It never really succeeds permanently. It is the reason why men
avoid designing women. They say to themselves unconsciously that this
forced effort is an overcompensation for a real (i.e., unconsciously
perceived) inferiority.

The only thing rightly to be called charm is the pleasantness of the
natural reaction on the woman’s part to the binary situation, the
situation of man and woman in social intercourse. Her forcing herself is
always repugnant to him, if he is normally himself. The word charm,[10]
therefore, applies to a type or action on her part that is conditioned
solely on her being with him. It is character and conduct, ingenuous,
instinctive, spontaneous; revealing, without traditional or conventional
inhibitions, the essence of true womanliness, and brought out only in the
situation that is really, and in the highest sense, erotic, where the
erotic holds sway over the more ignoble egoistic-social impulse.

Her charm for her husband will consist in the fact that she is woman
and wife first and foremost. That is enough for a man who is first and
foremost man and husband. Uninhibited woman, unwarped by sex inhibitions,
spontaneously making her direct response, her natural reaction
uninterrupted, unperverted, unbroken by archaic traditions that have
overweighted the egoistic social instincts and debased the erotic—such a
woman has and will always have the maximum of charm for unperverted man.
The eternal femininity, the universal femininity, is always at the core
of every woman’s being.

Virile love alone is competent to tear away the impediments that perturb
its reactions, and when this is done true monogamy is inevitable, for
there is no preventive mechanism obstructing the total fusion of their
bodies and souls. That kind of charm any woman naturally exerts over any
man, but it has nothing in common with the conventional charm of the
cosmetic and costumer’s art.

The monogamic husband, if he reads beneath the surface, feels this
charm in all other women as well as in his wife; but, as he knows what
it amounts to in care and attention, to uncover the soul of his wife,
he realizes that to undertake the task with another woman would not be
worth the candle. He _could do it_, but he knows he would get no more
satisfaction from another woman than from his wife.

§ 19

In the sense of the universal and eternal feminine charm being exerted
upon the primordial masculine, love is always love at first sight. But
the reason that love at first sight becomes hate at second or closer
sight is just this inability of the man to play the truly virile part.
What has charmed him at first sight no longer charms him simply because
all charm exerted upon him produces in him the autoerotic mental
reaction. Only the first sight should produce that result. If the second
look is not accompanied by the desire to dominate and to explore the
depths of the soul behind that face, it is the look not of a virile man
but of an autoerotic boy. And the boy goes on being charmed by the face;
or stops being charmed and is antagonized. She will antagonize him
actively and positively, of course, if, in due season, she does not sense
in him the virile action. With her hostility aroused by this unconscious
sense of his weakness felt by her, he is disgusted naturally and looks
for another face.

The modern hologamous marriage is the creative work of a virile man, a
work that, as do all vital things, needs constantly to be kept up. No
overgrown boy will be able to accomplish this virile work, for being
mostly brought up by women, he will not know what _is_ the real work of
virile man in marriage.

The marriages that run down, those in which the egoistic-social or
material impulses gain the ascendancy over the erotic or spiritual
impulses, are the marriages of autoerotic boys, not of virile men.

Psychic virility of the husband in the marital relation is the only
factor that can insure the permanence, except superficially, of any
marriage. “Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds.”

There should be alteration in love, but it should be caused by the
progressive development of the husband’s love. This is the theory of
relativity applied in the erotic sphere. Love should not alter when—that
is, because—it finds alteration; but it should make changes in the
reactions of the wife, so that each year finds the married lovers more
completely fused physically and spiritually than the year before.

From the woman’s point of view, she is invited by marriage to a banquet,
at which she may reasonably expect to find a variety of comestibles all
of adult characteristics. If at this banquet she is served by her husband
only with milk or pap she is rightly revolted, and will not eat. Milk
alternating with pap in successive courses of marital banquet would be
cruelty and adequate cause for separation, if their exclusive presence
could be attributed to the voluntarily malevolent choice of the husband.
But in most cases it is merely his ignorance for which his parents and
teachers are the blameless cause.

§ 20

Is there any clearer truth than that all autoerotic practices in
the marital union are unmanly? And is there any statement more
incontrovertible than that the average husband who has not taken
the trouble to know and control his wife in the erotic sphere is
unequivocally autoerotic mentally?

Can it be doubted that the average woman has no possible means of knowing
whether her suitor will, after marriage, be an autoerotic boy or virile
man? Can we blame her if she is forced by our crazy laws to make this
a trial marriage, divorce him if she can, and make another trial? Can
we blame anyone for taking food if she is starving and call her act
stealing? Not unless we have made it perfectly plain to her how and
where she may legitimately obtain food. But we can blame the man, for
he is, he always has been, and he always will be the provider of erotic
power. A man has no right to undertake the erotic support of any woman,
and then proceed to starve her and incontinently to fatten himself upon
her. Universally such a man is scorned and always will be, except by
women whose erotic instincts have been overgrown and overwhelmed by the
egoistic-social impulses of conventionality. These do not scorn a man
who resorts to prostitutes to feed his autoerotic appetites, or who keeps
mistresses or has other illicit liaisons for the same purposes.

The moment an anthropoid human realizes what he is _getting_ from the
promiscuous relations, and that he is autoerotically getting in a
_puerile_ way instead of giving in a _virile_ way, he takes no more
interest whatever in the promiscuous relation. The reply to an obvious
objection here is that if he finds his wife lacking in passion it means
he has not learned to know his wife, and, if he thinks he finds more
passion in the extra-marital woman, he is either deceiving himself or
being deceived by her, the extra-marital one; and that he is _sexually as
anesthetic to all women_ as he fancies his wife to be anesthetic to him.

Unless she is a chronic invalid he has no justification in thinking
that passion is impossible between them. He has not the knowledge of
himself wherewith to develop in himself enough virility to awaken her
erotic instincts. When once awakened these will adequately satisfy him.
If he has not aroused them in his wife there is little chance that he
will arouse a real feeling in other women. If he cannot consistently be
satisfied with one woman and believes that men are incurably polygamous,
let him, first, be sure to sound his wife’s erotism to the bottom, and
he will then need no other woman nor fatuously imagine he wants another.
This is the surest cure for the polygamous-nature-of-man delusion.

The errant husband may think he roves in search of a real woman. As
husband he has a real woman by his side; but, having a real woman as
near to him as he can bring himself to approach, he wanders forth in
search of an imaginary woman, who does not exist in reality. There is no
such thing as the imaginary woman except in his mind. His virile function
is to make over this real woman at his side according to the mental
pattern he has of woman as she should be, and within reasonable limits
he can do it, if he has the virile strength to control his own emotions
in her presence. If he cannot do it in hers he cannot do it in another
woman’s, just because he has failed to do so in his wife’s.

The answer will of course be made that a man may marry a shrew. To this
the reply is that a shrew like Katharine in Shakespeare’s play is a
woman who has not been taught to love as every wife should be. A shrew
is simply a woman not yet erotically developed. It may, to be sure,
take a more than ordinarily ardent lover to develop such a woman, but
barring the exceedingly rare cases of women in whom love is a physical
impossibility, the shrewishness of a woman is only a measure of the
inadequacy of the husband. Except for the sporadic freaks of nature there
is no such thing as an impossible woman.

§ 21


In the minds of young lovers no doubt exists that their love should be
mutual. The doubt comes later in their married life that possibly some
impediment either existed in a latent state before they were married
and has developed since, so that they ceased to be mutual; or, not
previously existing, was developed by some factor in their later married
life unforeseen in their earlier days and therefore impossible to avoid.

In the creation and maintenance of mutuality in the early married life
the young husband is the only one concerned. If there is real mutuality
caused by a perfect response in his bride, he can maintain it only if
he knows how he has gained it. If it was gained by merely instinctive
actions on his own part, and if he is impressed by the beauty of the
mystery, and repeats to himself how wonderful it is, and how inexplicable
to have so warm a response, he will not have a good chance of continuing
it. He will have to do what he has not yet done. Consciously, and
purposefully, he will observe his wife’s reactions during the entirety of
the love episode; that is, from the beginning of one quite through to the
beginning of the next one, not merely the period of the highest level of
erotic excitement.

It is the privilege of woman to remain autoerotic in her reactions. She
may or may not rise to allerotic action during her entire life. But man
can never succeed in the marital life if he remains autoerotic. His first
reactions to the marital situation are necessarily autoerotic. He cannot
avoid that. His previous experience with women, if any, and particularly
with prostitutes, gives him at first little if any opportunity to be
with his wife other than essentially autoerotic in his reactions. A
man’s first experience of a woman in an attempt at a love episode is
invariably a bath of absolutely new sensations, a plunge into a sea of
diverse stimuli, a medium in which many men flounder for the remainder
of their lives, gaining each time no more than an uncoördinated congeries
of external excitement in which they act in no controlling manner. Such
men never mate a woman in the highest sense. They only supply her with a
child in the guise of a husband. There is no mutuality between the surf
and the bather who is helplessly tossed about in the breakers and is
finally washed up on the shore and left breathless by his contact with
the countless laughter of the sea.

Mutuality in the love episode depends solely on the husband’s ability to
control the situation. There is no real mutuality in a relation where
the wife is merely a dispenser of physical delights to a husband that
neither knows nor cares what he himself contributes to the situation, who
immerses himself totally in his own sensations. He is deaf, blind and
otherwise anesthetic to what he himself can accomplish in the line of
studied and foreplanned effects of his own, self-initiated (not merely
instinctive and automatic reflex) actions upon his wife. True, there
are many women who expect no more of a man than just this automatic
autoerotism. But, sooner or later, even though unconsciously, they
perceive a lack of “some amorous rite or other” and their own passion
cools, if it has had any warmth. There is no mutuality here.

§ 22

Mutuality does not exist where the wife has no alternative other than
the autoerotic reaction of the husband. But in spite of an unchanging
autoerotic disposition of the wife, mutuality may be absolutely secured
by the instructed husband. As indicated below, the average honeymoon
should see the beginning of the end of mental autoerotic reactions on the
part of the groom.

Even the groom that has had previous sex experience is in his early
marriage in an erotic situation which is essentially new to him—a
situation that contains elements the like of which he never could have
experienced before. The inevitable novelty of these new elements is a
condition, on his part, of perceiving all new sensations, practically of
having unprecedented things done to him.

The things done to him are more numerous and newer than anything in
all his previous experience. In this sense, then, he is by force of
circumstances placed upon an autoerotic level, from which it is his
imperative duty to ascend in order that by his control of his own erotic
reactions he may control those of his wife. No apology is needed for an
initial autoerotic response on the newly wedded husband’s part.

It might be said that in the situation of bride and groom each having
things done to them by the other, rather than positively doing things to
each other, there might be a situation of perfect mutuality. But if it
is, it never remains any longer than the duration of a honeymoon, for
the essential femininity of the woman demands that in the erotic sphere
alone, she be led, and with no uncertain guidance.

The honeymoon ends automatically when this point is reached; and the
condition of true mutuality in perfect marital relations ensues if the
husband has a virile love of his wife and takes the lead. If his love
is not virile, but merely autoerotic and puerile, he never assumes
this leadership, and his wife becomes more and more unresponsive to
him, simply because the only type of activity to which she can respond
is an erotic virility, a true manliness that contains the real essence
of masculinity which is the imperative necessity to control the entire
erotic life of one woman.

§ 23

It should not be assumed that these remarks about the honeymoon imply
that all honeymoons or even any of them are failures. The failures,
if such appear, are only apparent, and need not necessarily be real;
for their success is always within reach of the husband who needs only
knowledge and confidence. His one aim is the proper response of his
wife, and that is his only needful success. If he uses intelligence and
acquires knowledge (and the honeymoon is the source of his knowledge of
the extent of his wife’s inhibitions, negativisms and resistances) his
progress is limited only by the small amount of his love. If he has love
enough, which includes a determination to win, he will succeed. And it
should be remembered that a woman’s consent to marry is not her admission
that she has been won, but only her consent to let the man win her
thereafter, if he can.

When this control is properly assumed by the mentally and spiritually
virile husband, real mutuality begins in the marital life. The husband
now conquers his unavoidable initial autoerotic habit of mind and
thought, and at the same time becomes a truly social being, realizing
that by his own self-control alone, in the love episode, which
absolutely assures his wife’s complete erotic affiliation with him, he
is securing the only kind of mutuality worthy of the name.

It is obvious that _this_ mutuality is reciprocal in a sense entirely
different from any mutuality that could be attributed to the relation
during the honeymoon stage. He knows now what erotically emotional
effects he can produce on his wife during the love episodes, and exactly
how he has produced them. Beyond any doubt whatsoever, he also knows from
the most intimate experience that the production of these effects is the
only real mutuality.

An effect, in the erotic sphere, produced in a husband by a wife, is
one from which all truly virile men realize they gain only autoerotic
pleasure. To this effect they contribute themselves nothing. In the end
the wife gets nothing of the emotional catharsis which is the _sine qua
non_ of true marital living. In such circumstances the wife gives and
the husband receives, certainly a gross disgrace if it be continued, a
disgrace abhorred by all men. There is no mutuality in such a gift which
but impoverishes the recipient.

It thus appears that in the marital relation the husband alone is the one
rightly to be the giver. And his gift impoverishes neither himself nor
his wife, the recipient, but paradoxically enriches both. The husband
rightly gives his time, his attention, his love and thereby controls. But
in order to do this he has to control himself absolutely, so as not to
snatch away from both of them that of which nature has designed him to be
the donor.

Mutuality requires the husband to be sure to get something, but the
thing he can get is the erotic acme of his wife, and this is the only
result that, to the spiritually and mentally virile husband, has any
value whatever. If, on the other hand, he takes his own erotic relaxation
without getting hers it is merely a half gift which he forces, or
persuades, her to give him, and mutuality is out of the question.

§ 24

The idea of compensation or barter or _quid pro quo_ must be rigidly
excluded from the concept of mutuality; for this measuring of the balance
of values of the actual physical performances or even intellectual
attainments rests for its validity on the inevitable comparisons which
are the basis of all values for the egoistic-social activities. To the
greatest erotic success these comparisons are utterly antagonistic. In
the erotic sphere, as is later noted,[11] comparisons are not merely
odious, but logically impossible. There can be no balancing of giving and

From one point of view, the husband cannot but give all and receive
nothing, at least of the character of that which he gives. He gives an
emotional reaction to a woman, which no other man can give.

He cannot in return reproduce in himself the emotional reaction of a
woman. He cannot react as a woman reacts, if he be a virile lover, for
such a reaction, though common enough in run-down marriages, is not the
emotional reaction of a man. If his bisexuality leads him to approximate
this feminine reaction, he is to that extent himself feminine and not

One should not, however, ignore the fact that both men and women are
normally bisexual to a slight extent, and to that degree woman will
desire to exercise some control in the erotic sphere, even if it be only
to create in her mate the most complete erotic effects. Also, if a woman
with a comparatively large proportion of masculinity in her nature be
married to a man with an equal proportion of femininity, a happy marriage
may result, if no other adverse elements enter.

But in general it will be admitted that the husband cannot rightly seek
for himself the type of erotic reaction which is proper and peculiar to
his wife; though it must be confessed that the suggestions operative even
in the average married love episode are strongly that way. The husband
hears the ecstatic responses of his wife and her repeated inquiries as
to his own pleasurable sensations, and the whole situation is such as to
suggest to him that he identify in every respect his own feelings with

But to do so is in no degree to make for true mutuality. His own feelings
should not be the utter surrender and abandon to physical and mental
bliss which he sees so profoundly moving to his partner. His feeling
should be a pervading sense of triumph and accomplishment, no less
profound for being embedded in sensual gratification. The truth is that
biologically the wife has no positive accomplishment to perform in the
love episode; for the only accomplishment of which she is capable is the
utter dissolution, temporary though it be, of the personality of her
husband. If she succeeds, she is in the position of one who, not knowing,
should try, by applying a match, to see whether or not gunpowder is
inflammable. It is, and she is carefully kept in ignorance of the fact,
but plentifully supplied with matches.

If this quite easy accomplishment of the wife is successfully performed,
she has no husband left, at least for a while, and the explosion has
ruined her own chance of happiness, until more explosive is provided.

The husband’s unequivocal task, therefore, which alone assures his
erotically supporting his wife is rigidly to remain uninflammable until
she, metaphorically speaking, is in ashes herself. For this scientific
reduction of the modern wife, the modern husband needs, for he rarely
finds it instinctively, the help of the present-day technique of love as
taught by the best erotologists.[12]

This will enable him to avoid being consumed to a condition where he is
no longer able to produce any effect at the very time when an effect is
most loudly clamored for by nature.

The quick ignition of explosive powder produces only a puff and a flash,
but the wife desires no flashlight of that type but a guiding star.

True mutuality, therefore, cannot be present in a couple where the
husband does not reverse this process and absolutely retain his own
emotional tension until her erotic acme has taken place. It cannot be
too often repeated that the only means of securing the wife’s emotional
catharsis in the acme of the love episode is the husband’s remaining
tense and unrelaxed, avoiding his own emotional catharsis until hers is,
beyond the peradventure of a doubt, secured.

§ 25

An absolutely novel and unprecedented result follows the successful
accomplishment of this erotically virile performance.[13] The husband
gains a relaxation of all his tensions; the most important of all, and
the greatest, being that relaxation of his caused by the total relaxation
of his wife’s erotic tension. A good part of his own tension is caused by
his knowledge of hers.

The even unconscious knowledge that this has not been accomplished is the
little rift within the lute of married life that increases until their
relations eventually become no longer sweet bells, but jangled out of
tune and harsh. No matter how much intellectual congeniality there may
be between the married partners, which is a factor more egoistic-social
than erotic, this lack of unconscious rapport is actually sensed, though
not directly. With characteristically human proclivity to rationalize
(instead of to know facts and to reason from them), husband and wife
begin to disagree upon points apparently most remote from anything
erotic, as for example the position of pieces of furniture in the house,
or the thousand and one details of solely egoistic-social import.

This does not mean at all that they are not going to have differences
of opinion. On the contrary, honest differences of opinion and taste
are to be acknowledged by each as proof of the other’s positiveness of
character; and the surprises caused in the husband by the unexpected
reactions of his wife to all sorts of situations, chiefly egoistic-social
ones, are part of the variety which is the spice of marital living.

They congratulate themselves that their disagreements and disputes do
not concern really fundamental things, though if they but knew it, there
would be now, as there once was (but they have forgotten), no question
raised about such matters simply because such matters do not belong to
the sphere of marital erotism.

Complete erotic mutuality based on the proper “firing order” of the love
emotions of husband and wife, distinctly separates and keeps separate and
apart from the single erotic sphere, where the twain are one flesh, their
two individual spheres of their separate egoistic-social impulses and
activities. The husband leaves unquestioned all of these activities of
his wife and vice versa.

There thus emerges with increasing clearness the prime importance of the
distinction between erotic and egoistic-social impulses and activities,
and with this distinction grows the unalterable conviction, from every
aspect of human values, of the unquestionable superiority of the erotic
sphere over the egoistic-social spheres.

It is a matter of scientific proof of the last few years, too, that
in the married relation this ascendancy of the erotic over the
egoistic-social sphere is not only conducive to the greatest health,
happiness and longevity but also productive of the greatest material
success. The most successful men and women, from every point of view from
the material to the spiritual, are the men who have secured, and the
women who have experienced, this truly human erotic mutuality.

§ 26

It is the object of the present volume to point out that the
non-existence of the erotic acme in the wife is an inexcusable condition,
that can be remedied, and that its substitution by the ability of the
husband to insure the acme in the wife as often as she desires it is a
condition of the true physical and spiritual progress which should mark
the present century.

Nothing could seem further from the truly American ideal of a good
“sport” than that there should be men who will take all and give nothing.
No excuse is accepted of men who enter a game, and, as soon as they
are in, become paralyzed and unable to do a single thing except shout
about their membership on the team. But that is exactly what the average
husband does in his marriage. He marries mostly to get something for
nothing in sex life and he finds out later that the something turns out
to be nothing. Who is to blame but himself?

He makes innumerable excuses for his failure, excuses sometimes handed
out to him by physicians. He is a man and men are known to be hasty in
the love episode. Civilized men always are and have been. There is no
help for it. Their wives must make themselves content with the crumbs
that fall from the husband’s table. It is injurious for men to change
in any way or degree their instinctive reactions. Postponement or doing
without their own erotic acme acts in such a way as to constitute a
strain on the man’s nervous system. All these false statements have been
made by different people at different times.

The necessary control on the man’s part is possible to attain, and
once attained it is easy to maintain. But it depends upon a fundamental
rearrangement of all values for the man such that the greatest value for
him is not in the pleasurable sensations that he himself gets out of his
relations with his wife but in the gratifications, totally different in
sense quality, that come from the sense of triumph over resistances that
is experienced by him when he has for the first time attained, or finally
has secured, such control over himself that he can thereby control the
emotional specifically erotic reactions of his wife.

If a man’s deepest unconscious satisfactions came from being emotionally
controlled by a woman he would never learn to control hers. The
unconscious satisfactions invariably are felt when control over the
woman’s erotic responses is held by the man.

Nevertheless there is a level of unconscious reaction causing feelings of
gratification that even in men come from being controlled. More will be
said about this later. Instinctively in many boys this control is thrown
off. They rebel against paternal authority. They scorn being managed by
girls. They prefer to be themselves and act their own acts and derive
satisfaction from the effects of those acts upon the persons or things of
the external world.

Yet the fact that all individuals of both sexes, when infants and
children, are dependent, and can gain satisfaction and relaxations of
tensions of desire never by means of their own acts but only by means
of the acts of others, makes it quite evident that there will be a
tendency, stronger in some than in others, to get in post-pubertal life
their satisfactions via the old route—the satisfactions that come from
having things done to them and not from doing things for other people
and observing the results.

There are two sources of satisfaction in every human, the infantile one
which may be called passive and the adult male which may be called the
active source or the source of satisfaction from the effects of one’s own

§ 27

It is not to be overlooked that the satisfaction derived from the effect
of one’s own action may be due to an unconscious magnifying of these
effects. Those who have a slight degree of discriminative ability will
think that their acts and the results of their acts are fine, whether
they are or not, and may remain in the same illusion throughout their
lives. They may never become disillusioned. I may continue to believe
that the effects produced on my readers are deep and far-reaching
whether they are or not. But if I were content to read books and listen
to lectures and felt no desire to write and to influence others or
to persuade them to see things as I see them I should derive all my
satisfactions via the route of passive experiences.

There is a fundamental difference, then, between the essentially
masculine and the essentially feminine type of character, according as
the individual gets his satisfactions—the relaxations of his tensions of
desire—via the route of feelings caused in him by the action of others
or via the route of feelings caused in him by the true and illusionless
perception that he has produced effects in other persons or in other

The rearrangement of values is the transition from a frame of mind in
which the satisfactions are via the “passive” route to those via the
active route. This rearrangement need never, for any biological reason,
take place in a woman who is properly mated. If she be married but
not mated by a male individual who has not made the above-mentioned
transition, she will herself tend toward getting her satisfaction via the
“active” or “male” route. In other words, rather than have nothing, she
deludes herself into thinking she has something by getting a cheapened
substitute, by becoming husband to her husband, who in turn becomes wife.

No man can be said to be successful as a husband who has not made this
transition. No man is exempt from the necessity of the transition from
this type of physical autoerotism to allerotism, simply because he was
once an infant, and until he makes this transition he is, no matter what
his age in years, still an infant. It has been undeniably proved by
psychoanalysis and experienced by people in innumerable forms that no
woman can be dominated by an infantile man.

Therefore every man is either the one or the other; either an adult man
or an infantile man. He can by taking thought, and after reading books
like the present, learn to which class he belongs. If he belongs in the
infantile class he has been dominated by the “mother imago” or “angel
imago,”[14] and if this be a fixation it will require a deep analysis by
an expert before he can come to a realization of his true status; but
it is unlikely that nine out of ten who read this book will require
more than the advice offered in the following chapters. Or it will
require a good orientation and suggestive treatment from a well equipped

No wife can be a thoroughly happy one whose husband is in the infantile
class, and who thus needs her “playmate.” (See § 12.) Such women are
truly in a tragic situation. The infantile (autoerotic) behaviour of
such a man in the fragmentary (never complete) love episodes leaves the
woman nervous, “on edge,” with an unconscious conflict in her psyche that
tends to undermine her health, and to make her an insuperable mystery to
her husband, who himself suffers through his own ignorance. He knows,
if he knows anything, only that something is amiss, but blinded by his
own egotism can never believe that the cause lies solely in him, no
matter how blameless he may be, from one point of view, on account of his

§ 28

To return then to the proposition with which we started: If the man
believes that the woman can by her action evoke his erotic acme, she
can. He should know and believe that she cannot; unless he knows she is
going to arrive at her erotic acme at the same time he does. But no man
can ever be absolutely sure of that, particularly if his egoistic-social
impulses are inordinately active and she has few if any such activities,
comparatively, and more leisure to follow erotic impulses.

The autoerotic condition in a man is the cause of his haste in the love
episode, as his attention is so primarily centered on his own sensations
that he excludes the possibility of his observation of his wife’s
reactions in the most intimate of marital relations. If the husband is
hasty, he is _ipso facto_ mentally autoerotic. His haste is caused by
his mental autoerotism. In blunt language he loves himself more than his
wife. He may love the results she produces in his feelings. What he needs
is to learn how to love more, to be more passionate, to go deeper into
the nature of erotism, into the study of the woman, his wife, and her
individuality, particularly her unconscious reactions to him.

The thought, “I can control the most elusive thing in the universe—a
woman’s erotism,” is the most triumphant thought that can occur to a man,
except possibly the thought, “And I know how to continue to control it.”
It is almost equivalent and is analogous in many respects to an ability
to overcome gravitation and propel oneself at will through the air at any
desired speed.

§ 29

In this connection it must be emphasized that control of the erotic
situation by the husband is absolutely and unequivocally mental.

In order also to give due weight to the reply to an objection that might
be made here, two new terms will be proposed. The objection is that
the distinction between mental and physical is purely arbitrary, so it
is futile to say that the control is exclusively mental, because the
exclusively mental does not exist. Mind, apart from body, is non-existent.

The answer: All phenomena into which a so-called mental element enters
can be graded into what would be called without objection on the part
of anyone, more mental or less mental, meaning, of course, consciously
mental. Thus digestion is less mental than phantasying or day-dreaming,
and some emotions might be called less mental than others.

But because we are required by everything that we know about the
mind-body combination, to suppose that no so-called purely mental state
is without its physical substratum without which it would not exist,
and because no physiological process is totally outside of all causal
connection with the mind, we are justified in saying that mind is more
highly organized body, and body less highly organized mind.

Regarding then any human phenomenon as conditioned by both mental and
physical causes we can remove the difficulty, and at the same time the
objection that is being answered here, by adopting three Greek words and
coining two new English words from them.

_Soma_ is the Greek for _body_; _hyper_ for _upper_, or _above_; and
_hypo_ for _under_ or _below_. So we may call the ordinary physiological
movements and processes _hyposomatic_ or a lower form of action of the
mind-body combination. Similarly we may use the name _hypersomatic_ for
the various degrees of mentality. From the point of view of this book
all human action is somatic. Some of it such as digestion, glandular
secretion, is hyposomatic or at one end of a series of degrees of
complexity. Some human action is hypersomatic, such as remembering. Some
of the human phenomena, like emotions, partake of both ends of the series
in apparently more or less equal proportions.

§ 30

To return, then, after this digression, to the statement that control
is entirely mental: By this, of course, is meant control according to a
hypersomatic pattern. There is no control without a pattern. One never is
said to control one’s actions unless he has an idea according to which he
is going to act. Otherwise his actions are automatic—not controlled.

The immediate connection of this with our present argument is this then
(an argument that runs right along with the ideas of autosuggestion): any
man can do what any man has done, if he has the same hypersomatic pattern
according to which his actions are carried out.

An obvious objection will at once be made, but it is only an apparent
one. Many men will say they know they are physically weak, or
weak-willed, are lacking in control. They know it because they have
_never_ controlled their love emotions, and have _little_ control over
any of their emotions.

To that excuse, the answer is: just because you have not is no proof that
you cannot. If that were the case no progress would ever have been made
by humanity.

That you have not controlled yourself is proof only that you have not
yet vividly imagined a pattern according to which your actions might be
carried out. The only hypersomatic pattern existing in your personality
is that according to which you are now acting.

Countless biographies of men, great and less great, demonstrate that
there have been revolutionary, cataclysmic changes in their actions
resulting from alterations in the patterns, i.e., changes in the
hypersomatic end of their personality.

The man who says he cannot change his actions is simply saying he cannot
change his ideas. That would be somewhat analogous to saying he cannot
learn a foreign language. But we know that everyone going to a foreign
country and being environed month after month by a foreign language
_will_ learn to speak it, whether he tries or not. How easily and quickly
he does is a matter only of his hypersomatic elasticity. Some are more
elastic than others, but almost anyone who can walk can learn to change
his hypersomatic patterns, can in other words become conscious of a new
hypersomatic pattern, see its superiority to an old one, and regulate and
control his actions accordingly.

§ 31

Psychoanalysis has among other striking paradoxes this one most
applicable here. The person who says he cannot do a thing is consciously
saying, “I cannot,” but unconsciously saying, “I do not wish to.”

Any reply that can be made by any man who says he cannot learn to control
his own erotic emotions and therefore is unable to control his wife’s is
excusing himself, on the ground that he will not be censured by others
if he is really unable. He may be laughed at, or commiserated for his
incapacities, but he cannot, so he thinks, be held responsible for them.

But if there is one important and valuable advance made by modern
psychology it is that the unconscious, which says, “I do not wish
to,” causing the conscious man to say, “I cannot”—this unconscious
can be trained, reëducated, reshaped, repatterned. It may take more
than a month. The final emergence of action, based on the re-patterned
unconscious, may be sudden. But it can be done.

Those who say, “I cannot do it” are in their ignorance simply saying, “I
do not wish to do it.”

They would wish to do it if they had in their minds—in the hypersomatic
portion of their personalities—an adequately vivid picture of exactly
what it is desired to do.

It would be impossible to put into a book a detailed pattern of marital
behaviour on the part of husbands, particularly hyposomatic details.
But it is hoped that the book will give as clear an exposition of the
hypersomatic lineaments of the marital pattern as will be required to
make any man that reads it at least willing to change his own love
pattern for one that has in it infinitely more satisfaction and triumph,
containing as it does the only means whereby a single demi-human atom may
completely unite with another and form an entirely new whole.

§ 32

As far as records are available there is no reason to suppose that the
champion shot-putter, prize-fighter, or longshoreman is any more _able_
to evoke in his wife the climax of erotic ecstasy than is the rather
flat-chested, spectacled college professor, the department store head,
the banker, or any other member of the so-called sedentary professions.

The latter class of people have unduly and illogically overvalued the
hyposomatic end of the scale. Woman can be courted and married (and
thereafter won!) by men whose strength is hypersomatic just as well as
by those whose strength is hyposomatic. But so far as the physical or
hyposomatic side of the marital relation is concerned, there may be a
difference between the pugilist and the college professor in the amount
of egoistic-social development in comparison with the amount of erotic
development in his past history.

After reading this chapter many people may feel disappointed and say:
“You have not told me how I can insure my erotic self-control (or my

I will anticipate somewhat by saying that the affirmation “I know I can
control,” if repeated enough times a day with sufficient conviction would
undoubtedly help. If to this were added, “I know I love my wife better
than I do myself,” it would also be a step in the right direction.

But for the material of the pattern on which is based the conviction of
the truth of man’s ability to control himself, I shall have to refer the
reader to the later chapters in the book.

At first all I can hope to do is to convince some of the men who read
this book that they belong to the infant class of husbands. If the men
whose wives are discontented or whose sweethearts are slow in promising,
can read and realize that the whole situation is psychic or mental
(hypersomatic) rather than physical or economic (hyposomatic), they
will see that from one point of view their victory over themselves, and
incidentally over others, is the easiest thing in the world, far easier
than to lift a weight or change the colour of a leaf on a tree.

For the control recommended in this book no new muscles or nerves have to
be supplied, nor do any actual muscles or ligaments or tendons have to
be exercised or otherwise strengthened. It would be hard to go through a
daily dozen or (gross) of calisthenic exercises and still harder, indeed
impossible, to make hair grow (or not grow) where it did not (or did)
before. But the procedure to be recommended in this book is more like
opening one’s eyes, and seeing that a vehicle is bearing down upon one
(or about to leave without one), than it is like walking in an ethical
treadmill and satisfying a sense of duty by monotonous repetition of
behaviour enforced from without.

For the control advocated here nothing is needed but a new picture of
love, uncorrupted by the ignorance of traditional lore and superstition.
What is needed is more creative imagination in married life, not spoiled
by cynicism or emasculated by fatalism. Control can be secured!



§ 33

Emotions, including moods and many nameless feelings, are some of the
innate organic sensations evoked in our bodies by sensations that are not
organic. In other words, they form a part of the internal sensations,
which so far as generally named are originally associated with external

Frink remarks that “the emotion, from the point of view of physiology,
_is_ these various preparatory changes in the content of the blood,
in the innervation of the various muscles, endocrine glands and other
viscera. The emotion, from the point of view of psychology, is the
afferent, sensory report of these changes.” And William James’ classical
statement is as follows: “Bodily changes follow directly the perception
of the exciting fact, and our feeling of the same changes as they occur
_is_ the emotion.... The more rational statement is that we feel sorry
because we cry, angry because we strike, afraid because we tremble,
and not that we cry, strike or tremble, because we are sorry, angry or
fearful, as the case may be.”

While most emotions of the simple type, like surprise, admiration, joy
and others are in infancy and childhood originally, though not innately
associated with certain definite sensations from the outer world, they
are frequently reassociated by experience through the influence of the
environment, so that, in later life, one enjoys or detests quite the
opposite of what caused instinctive attraction or repulsion in early life.

The complex emotions of love, jealousy and hate are not, in their
greatest complexity, existent in humans before puberty, although the
unsynthetized elements out of which they are finally composed are present
in childhood, particularly hate. This, according to psychoanalysis, is
a more archaic emotion than love and is not its direct opposite. It is
likely that human emotions are progressing from a dominant hatred toward
a reigning love.

Love in its fully synthetic and complicated form is not only impossible
in children, but its higher types, spoken of in this book as _erotic_,
occur at their best in those more intricately complicated personalities
that are the peculiar product of modern civilization.

The expression of erotic emotion does not involve activity on the man’s
part solely, and absolute passivity on the woman’s. Passion and passive
are etymologically the same word, but the natural inferences from this
are erroneous. It happened that emotions were called passions by some old
Roman pseudo-philosopher who was translating Stoic doctrines and used
“passions” to translate _patheia_, which, in Greek, means “sufferings.”
The Stoics believed that emotions were sufferings inflicted on men by
Fate. Their great discovery was that men could conquer them by training
(_askesis_). Hence comes “asceticism”: the training by which a man might
free himself from the suffering which was caused by feeling anything.
Now we are beginning to realize that there are emotions that _ought_ to
be felt, and repeatedly—emotions that are as necessary to the growth of
the soul as food is to the growth of the body. Asceticism (training),
therefore, of the future will be a training in the emotions of love.

§ 34

Women are said to be more emotional than men. In the sense that their
actions are guided by their emotions more than by the verbal processes
of logical reasoning this may be true. For there is a type of mental
process that may be called logical in which verbal consistency is sought
and with little difficulty maintained. But as words are only counters,
symbols or representatives of things and are used in only a part of
all the thinking, conscious and unconscious, that goes on in the mind
continuously day and night, a term is needed with which to describe
the wordless thought-processes that are quite as important causes of
action as are the verbal processes; and to these has been given the term

Emotions are for the most part indescribable, not to be adequately
represented by words, and are therefore to be regarded as psychological
processes tendency to subject their mental processes to verbal thought or

Men are characterized more than women by a tendency to subject their
mental processes to verbal control, while women utter many words in the
vain attempt to give verbal expression to their feelings. In men on the
average words have more weight in the determination of action; in women
feelings or emotions.

§ 35

In the sense, however, that women perceive with greater clearness and
intensity the internal organic sensations (or emotions) it is not true
that women are more emotional than men. Unconsciously, “down deep in
their hearts” the members of one sex are as emotional as those of the
other. Men have as many and as powerful emotions as women, but have
controlled some emotions more than women have, by annihilating or
attempting to annihilate, them by means of repression. But women too have
been forced to repress certain other emotions, notably the erotic.

§ 36

The most vital emotion is the erotic. I hope I shall not be misunderstood
in my use of the term “erotic.” I place it above all the other emotions
in dignity and complexity. It is sex plus love and more than that. “All
the wonder and wealth of the mine in the heart of one gem.” All the
dynamics of the ages in the force of one feeling. It is the physical plus
the spiritual, the combination of bodily and psychical, the paradox that
makes the individual’s greatest personal happiness consist in his feeling
the happiness of another person of the opposite sex, the spiritual
force that vitalizes and sublimates every physical thing it touches,
the psychical that completely evaporates, if not supported by the most
physical, an emotion that, unlike any other emotion, comes from the
experience not of other _things_ but of another’s _emotions_, the only
emotion that responds pleasurably to _every_ manifestation of bodily and
spiritual activity of the member of the other sex. Erotism is the most
nearly perfect type of conjugal love.

§ 37

“After she has had sexual experiences,” Kisch maintains, “a woman’s
sexual emotions are just as powerful as man’s, though she has more
motives than a man for controlling them.” (Ellis, _Psychology of Sex_,
Vol. III, p. 202.)

Her motives for controlling them, which here means annihilating them or
repressing them, are egoistic-social ones (see § 43) just as man’s; but
in man-made society these motives are stronger in the woman than in the
man, because man has placed more repression on her sex impulses than on
his own.

In placing more repression on hers than on his, he has not, however,
given anywhere near a full expression to his own erotic instincts.
Because of the dominance of egoistic-social impulses in modern
civilization his erotism does not permit the expression of such
fundamental strata of his unconscious as are stirred in woman, whose more
flexible erotism is aroused to a pitch that he finds it difficult because
of his egoistic-social interests to ascend.

As is maintained steadfastly in this book, he has repressed his own, but
hers still more. In so doing he has lowered the moral, spiritual and
psychical status of marriage, which should, if they two are to become
one flesh, accept the entire body as well as the whole soul each of the
other. In repressing what he has deemed the physical side of love man
has put on himself a quite unnecessary burden. With the natural desire
to control, which constitutes masculinity, he has, in his thinking,
blunderingly made annihilation an equivalent of control.

This placing of more repression on her erotism than on his is due to
the fact that his own is so quickly satisfied in comparison with hers.
He acts en masse as if it would take so much of his time, now devoted
to egoistic-social ends, to equal, in erotic expression, her greater

§ 38

The most striking fact of most emotions, except those of love, is the
facility with which they are reassociated with ideas different from those
with which they first occurred.

The love emotions appear to be the least easily transferred, as indeed
they are the least easily stirred to their depths. This is said advisedly
on the well grounded observation that most people who say they love do
not love fully, and deeply. The more deeply they love, the more their
passion instills itself into every fibre of their being and the more
slowly they are able to change their love object.

But ordinary emotions, other than the erotic, are readily and almost
universally shifted from one object to another. Indeed, it may be
asserted that there is no innate content of any of the emotions except
love. Love innately requires an object of the opposite sex.

To illustrate the reassociability of the other emotions it is necessary
only to recall what things one has liked or feared years ago and compare
them with the present likes or fears.

And it would be enough to take fear itself as an illustration of the
variability of its content. When fear becomes fixed in a phobia, it is
extraordinary how irrational the association is, viewed from any logical
standpoint. A woman fears mice or snakes, although she has never been
injured by either, or beetles, although possibly she has never touched
one. Or she fears to cross an open square, and nearly faints if she has
to do so alone, although there is not a chance in ten thousand that any
harm would come to her. An association of an emotion so profound as fear
with some chance place or occurrence is ample proof that the emotions
themselves have no essential connection with any external object.
The absence of fear in some persons under circumstances where people
generally would be afraid also demonstrates the ready dissociation of
emotions from particular experiences. One can learn to like or to dislike
almost anything.

To a certain extent this is true of love but far less so if we restrict
the use of the term “love” to its more ideal phases. When we speak of
“Off with the old love and on with the new,” it will be conceded that we
speak not of true love but of a very shallow interest.

§ 39

A young woman, Miss F., married a man who made an ideal lover and to
whom she responded passionately; but yet she was not happy with him. She
had in reality fallen in love more or less unconsciously with a previous
suitor. She frankly told her husband she could not love him fully,
divorced him and subsequently married her first lover.

One might say that, if the reassociation of love emotions were as easy as
that of most other emotions the young woman might have learned to love
her husband. She evidently tried to do so, but she made the mistake, made
by many uninstructed young women, of going against her better judgment
in marrying the man she did. Her first lover was not in a financial
condition to marry. She wanted to marry, and took the first available
man. So, as in many cases, the fear of not getting married at all forced
her to take a man whom she did not love _enough_. She must have been more
or less conscious of this all the time. She made, however, a definite
attempt to reassociate her love emotions. She was not able to do it. Her
husband, although he is described as an ideal lover, was not able to
arouse her full passion.

§ 40

Then there is the case of Mrs. G., who married the prominent Dr. G.
practically on a wager. She did not love him, but in a spirit of bravado
declared to a girl friend that she could make him marry her. Not himself
being in absolute control of his own erotism, he succumbed to her charm.
Not knowing also the part a husband is required to play in the marital
life in order to make it a success, he did not make her love him, did
not evoke in her the responses which make a woman the object of a man’s
deepest passion. So, as in a great many marriages, he did not really love
her, and she divorced him after a few years.

Both women were unfortunate in their choice of a man. The resultant
divorces could have been obviated by the knowledge neither man had. But
this is the history of most divorces where the couples have come to grief
on obstacles considered to be erotic.

Neither of these women clearly distinguished between egoistic-social and
erotic motives because neither of them had had erotic experiences, and
in their marriages they failed also to get the highest type of erotic

§ 41

But it is impossible for any woman to know what sort of erotic life
will be hers with any man whom she consents to marry. At present every
marriage is a trial marriage for a woman, and for the uninstructed man as
well. Only the marriage composed of a woman and a fully prepared man can
be said to have any reasonable assurance of being permanent.

The other emotions than love are readily transferred from one object to
another. Love is not easily transferred as, primarily, it has only one
object, the human of the opposite sex, and where the love in question is
the elaborately developed love, that has its roots deep in the erotic
soil of the unconscious of both partners, which it invariably has, if
the husband knows how to control himself, the transfer is more like the
transplanting of a huge tree.

It all depends on the unconscious depth of the love whether it can be
transferred or not, or how long it may take. From this the corollary
is that the so-called love that is fickle is not worthy of the name.
Fickleness in a woman shows lack of skill in the man. Fickleness in the
man shows him to be not a man but an autoerotically minded boy.



§ 42

In a consideration of the essential factors in a happy marriage we are
dealing primarily with the most fundamental of the instincts. For all
practical purposes it is sufficient to distinguish broadly the two main
groups of instincts that are associated with the ideas of love and of ego.

In popular language we are inclined to say that whatever one does without
conscious forethought is instinctive, yet on further consideration it
appears that unplanned, impulsive acts or groups of acts may, according
to one’s bringing up, be habitual acts. These are acquired, not innate
acts, and yet as soon as any mode of behaviour becomes habitual or
automatic, the acts constituting it, occurring without forethought or
conscious control, are as unpremeditated as is any instinctive act. One
needs, then, to be careful not to consider as instinctive what is merely

Habits, because they are imposed upon the mind and body from without, and
therefore are not innate and original, may be more easily changed than
instincts. Yet it is quite evident that man has to control his instincts
as well as to form habits. In spite of the greater difficulty of changing
the acts which gratify the instinctive desires, this change can be made.

Asceticism and abstinence both prove that the sex instincts can be given
a different expression, and that a permanent, if not always deep, mental
satisfaction can come from the formation of ascetic habits. But the
effect of these, however spectacular it may be in the accomplishment of
egoistic or social ends, is always a bad one on the body.

Indeed, this bad effect on the body was even desired by the early
religious ascetics who thought that by mortifying the flesh (making the
body as dead as possible), they could immortalize the soul or mind; a
view which modern science has shown to be erroneous, dependent as it is
on merely verbal reasoning.

§ 43

The instincts whose gratifications are sought primarily in the physical
satisfactions of food, clothing and shelter, and secondarily in all other
forms of self-magnification, by means of which the individual may take
precedence over other individuals, such as wealth and social position,
or distinction of any kind, are called in this book _egoistic-social

The egoistic-social impulses are measured by the so-called “intelligence
tests.” They test that quality by which a person through shrewdness
and acuteness of perception of external relations facilitates his
passing ahead of others, always considered as his rivals. Persons with
the highest intelligence are likely to subordinate their emotions to
the intellect, and to reduce them to a gentle glow experienced while
performing complicated and long sustained mental work. Such people look
down on emotional people as being less intelligent than they.

§ 44

The direct expression of the egoistic-social impulse is the inevitable
comparison made by himself between the individual and others. He compares
himself unconsciously, if not consciously, with other men in health,
strength, wealth, position, and in every other respect; and whether
he voices these comparisons to himself or not, he unwittingly acts in
accordance with them.

He compares himself with women too. It may safely be said that while
there is no possibility of avoiding comparison with members of the same
sex, a comparison of oneself with a member of the other sex is the one
comparison that ought to be avoided, particularly when sex relations
themselves are in question.

By this is meant that if a man compares his wealth with a woman’s he
can say either that she has inherited the wealth of another man or, if
she has made it herself, which is a comparatively rare instance, though
growing less so each day, that she has done so simply by competing with
men in egoistic-social activities. A man generally avoids this comparison
if he thinks at all.

Children quarrel on egoistic lines regardless of sex. Comparisons thus
begin at an age before the erotism in the complete and synthetized state
is possible.

A woman, too, apparently makes a comparison between herself and different
men, notably her husband. And women make the same comparisons between
themselves and other women, but, it will be admitted, with greater
emotional discomforts.

In all these comparisons so far mentioned the standard of comparison is
an egoistic-social one. But in the erotic sphere not only are comparisons
logically impossible, but, where attempts at them are made, there is a
lamentable confusion of thought consisting of a rapid shift from one
sphere to another. Thus if a man should say to himself, “Woman is more
(or less) capable of love than men,” he would be using terms with no
sense. For he would mean that woman is more fond of being controlled in
her erotic impulses than man is. This is a comparison without sense;
because woman, with every fibre of her being, craves to be erotically
controlled, while man has no instinctive desire whatever to be
controlled. Such a comparison would be as senseless as comparing infinity
with zero.

If on the other hand a man should say to himself that woman is more (or
less) capable of love than man, he would mean that woman is more desirous
of being controlled in the erotic sphere than man is of controlling her.
As the fact is that man, innately, is infinitely desirous of controlling
and woman is endlessly desirous of being controlled, such a comparison
would be as senseless as comparing one infinity with another.

This second useless comparison may be objected to by the people who
accept a current opinion that men are more “passionate” than women.
This, they believe, is the real cause of the double standard of sexual
morality. But all women are potentially, and so are all men, absolutely
under the dominance of the erotic motive, and the only difference
between men and women is the degree of repression of its outward
manifestation, a degree entirely dependent on the circumstances of their

If we keep clearly in mind from the outset the inevitability of
comparisons between individuals, men or women, in the egoistic-social
sphere (a sphere consisting mainly of comparisons) and the utter
absurdity of comparisons in the erotic sphere, we shall gain much clarity
of thought and subsequently much peace of mind.

Does one woman want, more than another, to be controlled erotically? If
she seems to, or says so in clearer words or actions than does another
woman, she only happens to be more able to express herself in this way
than other women are. Does one man more than another want to control
a woman in the erotic sphere? If so, he only happens to have had such
experiences that have given him greater erotic insight than the other.

The men who admit that they find money-getting and all that it implies
more interesting than making love are only admitting that they have
allowed the egoistic-social motives to grow stronger with them than the
erotic motives. They are not stating any absolute truth about themselves.
They are merely saying that they do not know the truth about themselves,
and we listen to them without contradiction for we know that, when they
talk about making love, they do not know what we mean by these words.
They think that we mean wasting time or wasting substance in riotous

§ 45

The egoistic-social impulses are always developed in children by their
environment earlier than their erotic impulses can manifest themselves,
except in a fragmentary and unsynthetized manner.

This is somewhat analogous to the situation of the plants that “time the
explosions” of pollen maturity so as to secure cross-fertilization.

The child has no opportunity to synthetize his erotic impulses which
become unified under the leadership of the reproductive organs at the
time of puberty.

This separation of egoistic-social and erotic impulse development
may have been Nature’s way of securing an excessive egoistic-social
development, just as she secures maximum growth of the individual body
about the time of puberty. It is obvious that where the struggle against
the forces of nature is a keen one, as was the case ages ago before man
had begun to coöperate and really to form the basis of social living, any
development of the erotic impulse above the bare needs of propagation
would have been impossible.

So it may be supposed that a high degree of development of the
egoistic-social impulse was evolved out of the adverse conditions of the
physical environment of the prehistoric man.

But today the intensity of this struggle against the forces of nature
which developed the egoistic-social instinct is far less than ever
before. And the fact that it is now comparatively so slight makes it
evident that the original need for this excessive egoistic-social
development has passed.

In this development the free expression of the erotic impulse was
necessarily checked. One can see this process of inhibition of the erotic
going on in present-day savage tribes who are still on the way from an
uncivilized to a civilized condition. The sex activity of the individual
is even in them restricted more or less to comply with the demands of the
social unit.

It would seem that the expression of the erotic impulse would be freer
and freer as we approached the ultimate goal of civilization. In
uncivilized man, love in the sense used in this book has no existence,
but sporadic instances of it appear among civilized peoples.

But the ascendancy gained, in early human life on the earth, over the
erotic, by the egoistic-social instincts is now so great, on account of
the comparative modernness of the higher type of erotic impulses, that
even yet the latter are as young seedlings of some exotic plant in a
forest of enormous trees.

And specifically a conscious ideal is needed on every man’s part,
to overcome the undue prevalence of mere competition and create
anew a civilization based not solely as the present one is on the
egoistic-social instinct but on the erotic instinct.

Lest this be misunderstood as advocating an unlimited number of
offspring, it should be emphasized that the modern erotic impulse is
one leading toward love expression entirely apart from the desire to

How animal-like (we may for example think in 1950) it was in the year
1923 for people to consider it wrong to go through a love episode—even
married people—except when they wished a child to be conceived! Why
should the erotic experiences in those days have been left to the roué
and the prostitute? “What could have been meant by married love?” they
will say.

Now that an increased sense of responsibility has been developed in
women, placed on them thoughtfully and purposefully by men, all men are
able to find by actual experiment the women whom they wish for mothers of
their children, and women, too, are sure beforehand, both that they want
their children and that they desire those particular men for the fathers
of their children.

§ 46

The fundamental characteristic of the erotic instinct is its recognition
of the necessity of heterosexual physical and mental companionship.
This belongs to both sexes equally, although men’s clubs, women’s clubs
and the other occasional separations of the sexes exist—caused by the
overpowering influence of egoistic-social impulses.

If a man cannot see anything in a woman but a child or a fool, he has
no rational excuse for seeking her company. He might as well have a
dog’s. Those who see no more than that are themselves either children or
fools. In such cases the real love instinct has been so overcast with
prejudice or tradition that it cannot function as it should. Such a man
is judging women by the egoistic-social standard and his statement means
no more than that in his experience he has met more unintelligent than
intelligent women. Or it means that he himself lacks that degree of
intelligence which alone is able to evoke the intelligent reaction in

The proper functioning of the true love instinct is seen only in the
ineluctable conviction that man and woman are complementary, and that the
union of one man and one woman composes the real individual, the social
unit. Man alone, or woman alone, is only demi-human.

Plato’s fable in the _Symposium_, much quoted recently, relates how
humans were supposed to be duplex—two heads, two sets of arms and legs,
a huge double-size body. Fearing the power of such humans, the gods cut
them in two, one half of each binary human forming a man, the other half
a woman. After that time the parts were so absorbed in trying to unite,
that the gods were no longer worried.

Corresponding to the self-magnification of the separate demi-human
which seeks the magnification of its own petty half of the real unit of
existence, the true love instinct always includes in its strivings the
gratification of the other complement of the true social unit.

The egoistic-social instinct then regards the world from a demi-human
standpoint, looking for self-aggrandizement unconsciously, inevitably.
The erotic instinct alone takes in the aspect of the world as affecting
one other person too, and their children when they come along.

The love instinct seeks gratification through the gratifications of one
member of the opposite sex; and fails to find the first except through
the second.

It is impossible, from the viewpoint of this book, to love more than one
member of the opposite sex at once. Men or women who think they do this
are deceiving themselves. It is impossible to call that feeling love
which has in it any reservations whatever. Every thought, every feeling,
every act that could not be communicated to the mate, diminishes by so
much the integrity of the personality in whom it originates and initiates
an inceptive disintegration of personality.

By this denial that love at first sight is a fact is meant that either of
two things is more likely than anything else to happen in the cases where
men and women fall thus instantaneously in love with each other and the
union is continued through life, which is indeed comparatively rare.

Either the pair are utterly ignorant of what true love really implies and
maintain for years a passionless _mariage de convenance_; or one of the
pair, realizing the emptiness of joy that marks their marital existence,
is too proud to acknowledge failure. It is conceivable that the woman may
realize how unerotic her husband is, and feeling unable, as most women
are indeed, to change her husband’s ideas, to supply him with the ideal
he should have had himself, naturally gives up what is essentially for
her a hopeless struggle.

§ 47

It is also conceivable that the man, profoundly ignorant as many men are
of the erotic needs of women, may utterly fail, in his behaviour towards
his wife, to avail himself of the inestimable privilege he has of making
himself complete man in the only way possible for a man to do. Through
his entire married life he may suppose, in his ignorance, that his wife
is by nature cold, unsympathetic and unresponsive. He is unlikely to find
by accident the magic key to unlock the treasure of her passion, yet
it exists, and he may, though he has fallen in love with her at first
sight and she with him, be and remain the rest of his life blind to the
possibilities quite within his reach.

In either of these cases love at first sight is as helpless as any other
love. The term has no very deep meaning except in so far as all love is
love at first sight.

In the majority of people true passionate love can never be experienced
at first. Therefore no marriage is ever complete in the sense of ended,
as far as possibilities of further development are concerned, until the
death of one of the partners. If this is the case, then, it constitutes
the unanswerable argument for indissoluble marriage, monogamy, not
only with one partner but with that partner for life, providing, of
course (an exceedingly rare combination), that it has not been actually
demonstrated that there are real and insuperable incompatibilities. No
marriage except a life marriage can be complete any more than a single
demi-human existence can be complete until death has rendered any further
development impossible.

Just as a man can never know till the end of his life all the
possibilities his life held for him, and should endeavour in every
way to develop to its fullest every potentiality of expression of his
personality, so no pair can ever know until the end of their joint life
all the potentialities of the different ages of married life; for each
age has its own.

§ 48

Adult sexuality is not an egoistic-social expression in any essential
sense. While the gratification of sexual desire is at first entirely
selfish, starting as it does in every individual before puberty in
autoerotic practices, it never becomes thoroughly adult until, in the
case of the man, he has secured in his mate her perfect satisfaction on
which his own depends. He can never marry in the deepest sense if he
retains his autoerotic tendencies. A man’s satisfaction on attaining
solely his own erotic acme without reference to that of his mate, is in
every case an autoerotic satisfaction. The woman, in this instance, is
merely an impersonal object or instrument by means of which he produces
an effect on himself. In this respect his woman is no more personal than
his food.

It may be said that a man’s satisfaction is none the less selfish,
even though it be conditioned on a woman’s. But the self-satisfaction
which _excludes_ that of the woman must be greater in selfishness and
actually less human. In fact this reciprocal self-satisfaction is the
distinguishing human trait without which the sex life of most marriages,
like all prostitution, is not other than animal heat.

A man frequently thinks he has to make a conscious choice between
courses of action that are predominantly egoistic-social or erotic. He
thinks of the erotic life as taking time, and incidentally money in
the time lost alone, to pay enough attention to a woman to develop her
erotic possibilities, and many men acting under this false impression
that erotism weakens practical accomplishment, have decided that the
egoistic-social path was the more attractive. But even they can never
free themselves from the promptings of the erotic impulse.

Such men, thinking erroneously that all sexual acts are erotic, making
as they do no distinction between the two, believe that they have
somehow fulfilled an erotic need by keeping a woman, either a wife or a
mistress. This travesty of the truly erotic by a man who acts mainly from
egoistic-social motives is self-deception. The two are not only not the
same, but never can be made so.

§ 49

Many a young man making a success of his business, paying off his debts
and beginning to pile up money, lets up a bit from the strain of business
and begins to look about him for amusement keener than the ordinary

He meets an attractive young woman, puts her down mentally as not quite
up to his social scale, but finding her responsive determines to go as
far with her as she will let him. Of course this is starting wrongly,
on the basis of not so much making her an integral part of his own
personality as trying to find in her an objective and nearly impersonal
means of procuring autoerotic pleasure for himself. Not how he pleases
her is his ultimate thought but how she pleases him. It has possibly
not occurred to him that he likes her because he likes the effects she
produces in him and that no matter how much money he lavishes on her, it
is barter for certain privileges she permits him to take with her. These
privileges are not the highest and greatest he could avail himself of,
with a woman he would make his wife, the chief privilege being that of
developing himself through her and incidentally of developing her to the
highest degree of which she is capable.

On the contrary he does not take a great deal of interest in any section
of her personality except her body. He may think her cute and amusing or
enigmatic if he is interested in solving puzzles; but he is not likely to
find any of her mental characteristics engaging, although she probably
has such, even if she allows him liberties he might consider impossible
in some other women. He will probably not introduce her to his mother or
sisters, as he holds them as a different class of women; and with the
secretly followed woman he feels on a different social plane, no matter
how personally neat and attractive she may be. If she engages with him in
any erotic preliminary play, she ostracizes herself in his eyes from the
class of women to which his mother and sisters belong, women who would
not do that. This comes from his youthful propensity to bisect everything
into absolutely good and absolutely bad. Women are thus divided into
the mother class (which includes of course sisters and cousins) who are
supposed by him to be non-erotic in a sense. Chief goddess in this class
of erotically pure women is the mother-imago or angel-imago described in
another section.

To the ideas, opinions, beliefs and other spiritual and intellectual
characteristics of his clandestine “love” he pays little attention.
Believing again, and again erroneously, in the utter bisection of human
qualities, he does not know that supreme erotic attainments demand the
highest intellectual abilities, or the utmost freedom from traditional
superstitions about conventional morals. He does not know that his own
greatest intellectual development is conditioned on his own fullest
erotic development, which he can achieve only by the deepest and most
searchingly passionate pursuit first of the soul and second of the body
of his inamorata. His tendency toward gross bisection makes him accept
the common shallow opinion that physical and spiritual are far as the
poles asunder. He does not know that what he thinks the keenest physical
pleasure is, as physical pleasure, far inferior to what it might become
for him if he treated his evening love to the full illumination of his
intellect and his reason. He also thinks and still erroneously that he
can purge away all earthly love from the woman of the mother-imago class
and find for his wife, whom he will later love spiritually after he has
satisfied his physical passions, a woman absolutely pure of all human

He makes the serious mistake of thinking he can love on a sort of
departmental plan, a plan that may work well in his business or in any
other egoistic-social sphere, but in the erotic is an utter failure.

He thinks, in other words, that he has passions that should be called
base, and that he can gratify these desires with one type of woman.
That their baseness is only a matter of the autoerotic mode in which he
gratifies them has perhaps never occurred to him. Nor has he ever known
that no passion can rightly be called base if gratified allerotically,
which is the opposite of autoerotically. For allerotism is the passionate
love not of self but of another. No one could be called in any sense
unethical who gratified his own desires only through the gratified
desires of another. But that is not the state of the well-to-do young
man with a clandestine “love” affair.

The hardest thing for this young man to see is the fact, which is quite
patent to the unconscious both of the young woman and of himself, the
simple fact that his interest in her is merely autoerotic. Some indeed
will say that they are fully aware that they are keeping up secret
relations with women for purely selfish reasons. They see that, in their
day life, business is business and one has to sell and buy; and they
wrongly suppose that the selling and buying of women’s bodies is no worse
than business. The woman gets well paid for her services. Indeed they
may, if they have read him, quote Ellis, who contrasts the reward of the
average wife and the average _demimondaine_, and says that the prostitute
is much better paid than the wife, and does far less for the economic
reward she gets.

But the young man who thinks for a moment that there is anything really
erotic in the relations between himself and the young woman whom he
disdains to make his wife, knows no more of erotism than a butterfly does
of the depths of the ocean. His case is simply that of an undeveloped
embryo. His autoerotic love is a wasted gonad that has never met the cell
with which alone it could completely fuse and grow into an individual of
its appropriate species.

Not all sexual acts are erotic. Many are no more truly erotic than
smoking a pipe or chewing gum. The man who for egoistic-social reasons
refuses to confine his love to a woman he has married or intends to
marry, and thereby removes all chance of the vivifying effects of true
erotism being caused in his extra-marital life by the depth of his
marital love, is starting in the wrong direction every time. He has left
undeveloped the truly erotic part of himself, which, thus banished into
the unconscious, will nevertheless, through its indirect manifestations,
completely warp his sex life. He will have no love life whatever. In
spite of its frequent occurrence in men in general, sex life without love
life is a monstrosity.

Erotism, then, may be defined as the highest expression of sex, from
which all autoerotic impulses have been removed, or in which they have
been so much subordinated that they play an almost negligible part.

§ 50

In our competitive economic social structure of yesterday and today the
egoistic-social factor has been stressed to the utmost, almost, indeed,
to the breaking point for all civilized people, quite to the breaking
point with many of them. This egoistic tendency has evidently changed
if not perverted much of the pure love instinct. It has, for instance,
caused woman to judge man by his success in economic competition and also
to adopt for herself a competitive modus which has spread itself over
so much of her activities as in many cases to make her his rival in the
activities in which for the time he happens to be engaged.

No work that has to be done in the world is any more peculiarly or
properly the work of one sex than that of the other. All _work_, implying
as it does _duty_, is egoistic-social. No work is erotic; and nothing
erotic should be work and so have in it the effort that is connected
with duty. Anything looking like work that enters into the erotic sphere
is just so much egoistic-social activity. Erotism is the play side of
life. “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” needs to be reworded
into “all egoistic-social strivings and no erotic living makes Everyman
(and Everywoman for that matter) an emotional moron.”

Ships are not ordinarily navigated by women, but women could probably
navigate quite as well as men if they had equal experience. Some women
evidently think they are magnifying their own ego if they take up any
occupation simply _because_ it is or has been generally known as man’s
work. Yet no man presumably seeks to magnify his ego by becoming a chef
or a maker of women’s clothing.

It is strange that we should continue to make financial success an aim
for all young men, when innumerable experiences have taught us beyond a
doubt that happiness comes not from material success, but rather material
success from happiness.

No man can develop the egoistic sphere of his personality to the limit
of its potentiality if his erotic sphere is rotten to the core. And it
is rotten in many men. No man can feel right toward the outside world or
any part of it if his love impulse, the very core of his being and prime
mover of all his acts, is so overgrown with egoistic or social fears that
he cannot give expression to the most essential part of himself.

§ 51

The egoistic instinct becomes social, even before the intelligence
perceives that it may be made subservient to the erotic instinct,
quite as soon, indeed, as rivalries, even in childhood, appear for
possession and enjoyment. After the child reaches puberty and recognizes
the egoistic-social impulse as a possible means of furthering the
gratification of erotic desires, it becomes associated with these.

This extension of the egoistic-social interest under the dominance of the
erotic is more and more, in modern times, beginning to take on a phase
of spiritual growth in distinction to merely material aggrandizement.
It is not the best, in any respect, for a man to acquire, for the sake
of his wife and children, wealth and social or political or artistic
distinction. Indeed, many children are overburdened with the illustrious
traditions of their forebears and are even hindered thereby in their own

A man married and had three children, two daughters and then one son.
By the time his son was old enough to desire luxuries the father was
wealthy enough to provide them without stint. In doing so, however, he
made it plain that the son was expected to follow in his footsteps in
the business. The story is common enough where the son becomes simply a
wastrel without positive character of any kind.

Not so, however, in this case. The father’s extremely positive and
aggressive character produced a different reaction in the son, who had a
positiveness of his own. Remaining absolutely unspoiled by the luxuries
by which he was surrounded, he continued to disappoint his father by
becoming what the elder man thought the most ignominious of all—a
teacher, and soon reached the summit of his profession as head of a
department in a great university.

To this career, however, the father’s great egoistic-social success in
amassing money did not in the least contribute; rather it hindered it.
The son’s progress would have been infinitely easier without the rigid
egoistic-social atmosphere in which he was brought up. The ill-concealed
sneers of the father prevented the son even in his youth from developing
a genial open-hearted sociability with which he was by nature endowed,
and made his contacts with men and women unnecessarily difficult.

§ 52

The parents’ happy married life, irrespective of wealth and distinction,
is the best possible heritage for their children. The father just
mentioned could not in any sense have been called happily married. He
considered his wife an abject idiot and acted accordingly, domineering
over her to the utter extinction of any personality she might have
originally possessed and thereby deprived the son of even as fine a
mother ideal as he might have had.

If to a happy married life showing itself to the children in every
incident of the home and its management is added the best type of sex
instruction, both physiological and psychological, the parents have
done their duty, and have succeeded, as far as any parents could, in
transmitting an environment in which the superiority of the erotic over
the egoistic-social impulses is daily recognized.

An exceedingly common environment is the opposite one where any erotic
impulses of the children are not only frowned upon but are practically
declared by the parents to be either non-existent or impossible of any
form of expression.

Psychoanalytic treatment of various neuroses strikes, unsuggested by
the analyst, the sexual factor, as Frink says in his _Morbid Fears
and Compulsions_ (page 225), in the second or third interview. Most
neurotics are brought up with no legitimate sex instruction. It needs
a fair and open discussion between parents and children, in absolutely
matter-of-fact terms, to prevent sex from becoming compressed, if I may
be permitted to use the term in this way. Sex is forced into the focus
of attention of many children by being the only topic about which they
may not speak to their parents in confidence. The utter exclusion of
the erotic from the child’s life is the final compressive factor which
reduces it into the smallest possible compass, into dangerously explosive
density. The exclusive emphasis on the egoistic-social in the bosom of
the family drives out the erotic from the consciousness of children in
the only situation, where it would be more ethical than in any other.
Many children never see their parents _in puris naturalibus_, though
there is no logical or psychological reason why they should not, and
many psychological reasons why they should have experiences that would
prevent them, boys as well as girls, from the shock of some later chance

Many children never see any endearments between their parents, partly
because when the children are old enough consciously to notice these,
they have ceased to take place. The marriage of the parents has run down.
They are no longer lovers but purely egoistic-social business partners
in the home.

But where should a tradition arise, and how be perpetuated, of a noble
type of marital love, except in and by the children’s home? How should
they learn anything or where should they best learn of married happiness
except from their father and mother? If they see better marital relations
evidenced in the homes of the companions they may visit, surely they
will at least unconsciously realize that at home all is not well, and
the unconscious principle of identification will make them think that as
their parents lacked warmth of affection so they themselves must or will.

Homes in which the marriage of the parents has run down are not the
best homes for children. The parents realize this and try to act out
frequently a love which they no longer feel in their hearts. But all
acting of this character is absolutely transparent to the unconscious of
the child.

§ 53

The best parental environment, the one that gives the erotic its due,
is that in which the child is allowed to remain a child until he is
required to develop certain phases of the egoistic-social environment.
The best home environment is that in which the parents are themselves,
and particularly the father, emotionally, i.e. erotically, adult and not,
as in so many homes, emotionally childish.

The emotionally childish status, in the erotic sphere of many parents, is
due at least partly to fear, which is purely an egoistic-social emotion.
Love has in its pure state no such emotion as fear but the fears that
are so commonly associated with the expression of love are all of
egoistic-social origin.

While love is properly identified with sex, there being no real
expression of love that is not fundamentally a sex expression, there is
every reason why love should be freed from acquired associations with
fear; and if the fear which has, through puritanical views, attached to
sex could be removed from sex and therefore from love, people today would
be able to live a much more fully expressed life; for the inhibitions
irrationally associated with sex have taken away from life an inestimable
amount of health, strength and beauty.

The inference from this is that the only possible time to prevent the
acquirement of inhibitions is early childhood, and the only possible
people to do it are the parents.

The perfect love pattern will never spontaneously originate with the man
of the world; but with his children it may if he will, if both parents
will, practically refrain from interference. The parents know well
enough, sometimes consciously but more often unconsciously, that their
love pattern is a poor one—poor in conception and poor in execution. It
is poor in joy and rich in misery. According to this perverted pattern
they have lived their own love, and if they but pause to think, they
will withhold their hands and their words from interfering with the
illumination which is slowly reaching the younger generation, but which
blinds the parents’ eyes to true life values.

§ 54

In order to be a wholesome one, the relation between the parent and
child must involve a wholesome relation between the two parents.[15] You
cannot prevent divorce and prostitution if you do not develop before the
children’s eyes a marital pattern which will put both of these family
evils out of commission. You cannot annihilate even an idea by repressing
it into the unconscious. In order to obviate in the next generation the
worst features of this, we must recognize them intellectually and react
to them emotionally; and to be specific, in order to remove as far as
possible the chances of divorce and prostitution in our own children,
we must show them an environment in our own families in which the
marital pattern is such that any deviation from it must be revolting
to the little boy and the little girl who are now getting their first
impressions of married life from their own parents.

§ 55

_Instinct in Humans Generally Inadequate or Misleading_

Instinctive reactions are adequate responses only in natural environments
before civilization has set in. The more complicated life of modern
civilization renders purely instinctive reactions more out of date than a
twenty-year-old model of an automobile.

Not only is mere instinct not a good guide in the egoistic-social
activities, but in the erotic life it is almost worse than useless.
This is so because modern life is so different from the prehistoric
environment that humans are today unable to follow erotic instinct, or
even, on account of traditional inhibitions, to get at it in its purity.

We live today in an environment so preponderantly egoistic-social that
the majority of motives for any act are egoistic-social ones, and only
a small fraction of them erotic. This makes it as difficult to follow
erotic instincts as for a compass to point north, when a magnet is lying
three inches to the east of it.

Instinct alone would naturally prompt a boy and a girl to dwell long over
the preliminaries to the love episode. If left together and alone, they
would take some time to reach an erotic acme, and would instinctively
find that out last of all, as is so beautifully described in Marlowe’s
_Hero and Leander_, and so delicately suggested in _Paul and Virginia_.

Not only has the social convention of the present day tended more and
more to inhibit the introduction, prelude, first and second acts of the
love drama but it has raised such a barrier against the third act as to
give it an entirely disproportionate value in comparison with the others.

§ 56

There are three separate fusions involved in any perfect heterosexual
union: (1) the bodily fusion of the man and the woman, (2) the fusion of
their souls each with the other and (3) the fusion of the soul and body
of each more closely together.

The last comes from the man on his side and the woman on hers, each
seeing the world more _sub specie Amoris_—as manifestation of erotic
passion; but it also comes from the fact that the admission into
consciousness of the innate erotic reactions, in spite of the opposition
of environment—the legitimate admission of these feelings—vitalizes not
only the physical body of man and woman, but also all the multitudinous
and diversified contacts of both man and woman with people and things.

Instinct alone, if it were possible to follow it unchecked, would lead to
those three fusions; but the sex instinct in men and women has been so
submerged by various forms of prohibition that even in the married state
most husbands and wives do not know of the joy of any of these three

§ 57

One type of instinctive behaviour is the almost universal tendency to
reason by analogy which frequently turns out to be a reasoning by false
analogy and by association of the contiguity type.

It would be quite as reasonable for a woman to say that, because a
prostitute enjoys roast beef or lobster (or anything between), the pure
wife should feel it a sin to enjoy good food.

Of course there are people who think it is wrong to enjoy anything,
but while overgratification from food or drink has a certain essential
sensuality about it and gluttony was one of the “seven deadly sins,”
there is no psychological principle according to which intense enjoyment
is rightly prohibited, providing the consumption of food does not exceed
the necessity of the body for growth and restoration of tissue. Up to
that point the more one enjoys one’s food the better for himself and
incidentally for everyone else. If, however, the enjoyment has to come
from an increase in the amount consumed or the cost of it, then a quite
unjustifiable element of unsocial action surely enters.

One should enjoy food, and the more enjoyment the better, provided the
enjoyment does not depend on the increase in amount or expensiveness of

Similarly there is every good reason why both women and men should enjoy
sex and regard it as quite as necessary as food.

Instinctively both women and men would do so if their sexual instincts
were accessible. Those men and women to whom their instincts are
accessible do gain their greatest comfort if not their greatest happiness
through the uninhibited expression of the sex instinct.

§ 58

If the greatest happiness in life be something other than the emotions
incident to the fusion of man’s and woman’s beings in the love drama,
then, whatever that greatest happiness may be said to be, it is surely
conditioned on a happy marriage. Those who think otherwise are not
happily married and they need to become so before their words can have
any authority. Those not happily married have, of course, no means
whatever of knowing at first hand what is, or should be, implied in that

§ 59

Instinct has taught the woman to expect strength, physical or spiritual,
or both, of the man. Let it not be forgotten that mental and spiritual
strength is a perfect substitute for physical strength. It does not
mean that intellectual ability is the equivalent of spiritual strength
as the former may be coexistent with an emotional undevelopment which
is the same as spiritual weakness. A man may, even a child may, be an
intellectual prodigy as a chess player or mathematician without implying
any emotional development in the direction of normal erotism.

In this the sexes are different, for woman’s instinct here guides her
rightly. Biologically she is unconsciously forced, against her will, and
quite without her knowing it to test her man continuously for some kind
of strength. For some women indeed physical strength is all-satisfactory
but in the majority of cases of civilized woman physical strength,
without an accompanying spiritual strength, which will insure the
necessary erotic control of her by her husband, will always leave her
disappointed and discontented.

The qualities instinctively called for in the woman by the man are the
opposite in some respects. He unconsciously, if not consciously, expects
sweetness, docility, compliance, adoration in his wife, all qualities
that are a necessary background and basis for his childish and autoerotic
enjoyments. It is almost unheard of to find a man who takes pleasure in
the negativism which characterizes the child and also many women, and
in the opposition which alone, when deftly overcome, constitutes the
only proof that he is or has been purely masculine and creative in his
positive activities in effecting a change in that part of his environment.

It may be objected that this demand for compliance, softness and
accessibility in woman may not be purely instinctive; but, if it is not,
it is of such early origin as to be undistinguishable from true instinct.
It is the common experience of every infant to be treated with the utmost
tenderness by its mother.

§ 60

When the average unreflective man meets opposition, in any degree of
strength, from his wife he tends to reënact the mother-infant situation
in his own married life. This results in the husband’s reproducing more
or less exactly the original infantile tantrum. Naturally he tends toward
an explosive use of force when he does not find in his wife the qualities
he has sensed in his mother. However much he may conceal or transform the
outward manifestation of this infantile trend, the trend exists and is
a positive factor in the situation which contains the wife’s opposition.
From this it follows that instinct is a better guide for women than for

Woman is in every way justified in her demand for strength in her mate.
Man is wholly unjustified in expecting sweetness, adoration and the other
qualities except perhaps the docility implied in the susceptibility to
male control in the erotic sphere which is undoubtedly innate in every
woman. It does not occur to him that the negativistic opposition of woman
is her means of testing his own strength, and that he has in it the best
possibility of proving his essential masculinity. That he should totally
ignore the opposition by the sole means of suggestive replacement of
her antagonistic ideas by the ideas which he knows are the best ones in
the situation, and that he should convince and persuade her through his
perfectly confident attitude that this type of action on his part is
exactly what she is instinctively trying to evoke in him by her apparent
perversity, are too infrequently even glimpsed by the man who relies on
_his_ instinct.

§ 61

From the erotic viewpoint it makes no difference whether a woman is well
dressed or not or even tidy, provided her ill-dressed condition does not
interfere with her physical health. A woman in rags wielding a hoe or a
rake or even a spade may be just as radiant and have just as fine and
attractive physique as a lady in silks. It is a fallacy to suppose that
erotic attractiveness consists only in the cosmetic art. This motive to
keep herself in the pink of visual perfection appeals only to sight, and
is at bottom more egoistic-social than erotic, however much the woman may
think she is making an erotic impression by her appearance. The conscious
appeal to sight is frequently only an overcompensation for her erotically
unsatisfied condition.

As sight is only distant or vicarious _touch_, it is evident that the
visual appeal is only a substitute touch appeal. That a woman with
a homely face may be erotically attractive then is no paradox. The
beautiful face is only the symbol of the “skin you love to touch.” The
visible symbol may be absent and yet the kinesthetic quality be present.
Furthermore all lovers who take pleasure from the sight of beautiful
lines of the human form are only vicariating for kinesthetic sensations.
The original sculptor is the caressing hand.

§ 62

In modern human civilized life instincts in general, even irrespective of
the sex of the person in whom they are manifested, are the worst possible
guides. The love instinct is also among the worst, simply because its
present-day vestiges are so overlaid with restrictions and conventions
that it cannot be seen clearly. It has been so inhibited that it needs an

When looking at the two broad divisions of egoistic-social and love
instincts, one has to have demonstrated the essential superiority of the
love instinct and its far greater ability to cause happiness, health,
and, in the deepest sense, success.

Over two thousand years ago Aristotle saw, and said, that the greatest
satisfaction comes from fullest use of all one’s powers. Today we are
beginning to realize, after the study of the ductless glands, that
there is a kind of reaction in the body not mediated by nerves, as
are muscular reactions, and that we have, in the hormones, a mode of
interaction between the parts of the body that has been as yet unnoted by
physiologist and psychologist alike, an interaction that places marriage
in the forefront as a necessity not only for health but for the fullest
development of our latent powers.

§ 63

For among the dozen or so ductless glands, which Berman[16] has
called an “interlocking directorate” of all the human activities, is
the interstitial gland which places in circulation in the blood a
hormone that vitalizes all the secretions of all the other glands,
and which requires for its own perfect working the concomitant and
synchronous perfect working of the homologous gland in the mate, in the
other demi-human of the complete social unit. In other words perfect
physiological health is secured in no better way than by marrying
provided marriage is complete marriage and not merely a “Platonic” or
business relation.

From these considerations it is evident that as motives for action that
leads to happiness, the erotic instincts (if we can succeed in extracting
their ore from the mine of our unconscious and refining it from the
dross of egoistic-social accretions) are infinitely superior to the



§ 64

From the earliest ages seers and poets have glorified Love. The Bible
says God is Love. Love as the perfect erotic control of the wife by the
husband will be a strange concept to some minds that have been accustomed
to the theory that woman is the Queen of Love, and to the ideas of men
brought up under the Madonna influence.

This control is indeed the opposite of the attitude that many husbands
have adopted (or in which they have been trained) toward their wives, to
whom they act as they would toward idealized mothers, not of their own
children, but of themselves.

A conviction derived from intimate knowledge of the marital relations of
many people forces the conclusion that this current attitude not only is
a false one, but is also one that gradually renders a husband impotent to
take the part which a true male should take, in the highest type of human

Love is the work of art of an entire lifetime. The calf love of the
adolescent, the adoration of the betrothed and the first passionate
outburst of the honeymoon are but preludes or overtures to an opera or
drama that should continue as long as the two partners live together,
and in which the husband is the protagonist.

§ 65

To denote the highest type of special scientific student of the art of
love, the term _erotologist_ is suggested in preference to the word
sexologist, which would imply the study of only the physical side of

If a modern erotologist can tell us that husbands using toward their
wives one form of behaviour are themselves unhappy, and have too many
children, or too few, we should certainly be broad-minded enough to admit
that the chances are, we ourselves shall be unhappy if we do the same
things in the same way.

If the erotologist tells us that a million husbands have used a certain
technique in their erotic lives and have become supremely happy, and have
had just as many healthy children as they wanted and no more, we should
certainly be wise, if we could find out what was the felicitous technique
of the happy million. If we saw their wives retaining their youth and
beauty and vivacity, and being both loving wives and proud grandmothers
at the same time, we should not let envy of these men inspire us with
hatred and prejudice enough to say that their methods are iniquitous,
and not mentioned in the Bible; but we should inquire exactly what these
husbands did, to keep their wives and themselves so young and happy.

We should at the present day inquire mostly in vain. A good part of the
million do not themselves know what they do that is different from the
practice of the other millions. They just love their wives and them

The erotologists, however, have been quietly studying the marital
situation for some decades. They have compared, weighed, correlated
and investigated thousands of cases. Some of the sexologists have been
unscientific and biased with ancient superstitions. A few erotologists,
notably Havelock Ellis and Dr. Marie C. Stopes of England, Dr. W.
F. Robie of Baldwinsville, Massachusetts, Dr. H. W. Long of Peoria,
Illinois, and some of the psychoanalysts, are scientists, ready and
willing to look at facts as they are and not as they might wish them to

The erotologists have actually discovered definite facts about the more
intimate nature of the marital relation. It implies the interaction, in
every married pair, of four sets of tendencies: the husband’s conscious
and his unconscious trends and the wife’s conscious and unconscious
trends. Anyone looking only at the conscious factors is naturally puzzled
by almost all the external phenomena of marriage, e.g., why they fell in
love, what either could see in the other, why another pair fell out, what
on earth was the matter with them.

§ 66

To the observer not looking beneath the surface with the scientific
instrument of precision constituted by the study of the unconscious, the
actions of two married people are as unaccountable as those of a tack
sliding uphill on a piece of smooth paper. The erotologists have looked
underneath and seen the magnet in the hand of another person and are not

To the erotologists marriage is in no sense a lottery, but a situation
in which the causal factors are just as clearly natural as they are
either in a twelve-cylinder automobile that runs smoothly or in one that
snorts along with a couple of cylinders working. Anyhow a lottery is only
a matter of chance; and chance is only cause to which we either have
blinded ourselves or have not yet become sentient.

The erotologist can tell us definitely that in marriage the erotic
situation should be controlled by the husband, as the husband is in every
case the cause of the good or evil outcome of the match. Masculinity is
the unquenchable yearning to control the woman emotionally, erotically.
Femininity is the insatiable desire to be erotically controlled.

Everyone will admit that for a man to be erotically controlled by a woman
does not represent the peak of masculine attainment and that a woman’s
desire to control a man is, while common enough, not an expression of her
love instinct but of her ego instinct by which women are just as much
motivated as are men.

The erotologist tells us (the main thesis of this book) that the sole
solid bond of union in marriage is just this erotic control of the wife
by the husband. It is not complete and perfect if it does not, in all
activities strictly marital, supersede all egoistic trends. A woman may
as mother of her children, as lady of the house, as woman of business,
display in those spheres as many expressions of egoistic-social instinct
as she has opportunity for or as circumstances allow; but as wife she is
due only to constitute the controlled member of the complementary fusion
of the marital pair.

It is not without deep significance that the Anglo-Saxon word from
which “wife” is derived is allied to the root WIB which means “to
tremble.” It expresses an essential psychological truth. If the feminine
element in the _binary_, as I have called the perfect marital union, is
somewhat analogous to the surging sea on whose rocks or sand beaches it
continues to break, we see in the rocks or the strand the solid, at least
comparatively unwavering thing to which the surges conform themselves.
There need only be a comparative steadiness on the part of the masculine
element. He may tremble, too, but if only he tremble _less_ than she, he
will be the masculine and she the feminine element.

§ 67

The precipitate husband is over-precipitate only if he is or becomes more
so than his wife. There is no norm except a comparative one. He must have
control (and yet at the right time he may relinquish it); but at all
times he must have _more_ control over himself, and incidentally over
her, than she has over his erotic reactions, or over her own.

A woman in perfect control of her own erotic reactions, in the sense of
control through expression and not through repression or annihilation,
probably does not exist. But if she did she would make the perfect
prostitute. Such a woman could give any man the deepest satisfaction
of which he was capable—until he found that she, and not he, was
controlling her erotism. But the egoistic-social impulse operates as a
repressive factor even in the prostitute, and renders the completeness of
her positive control impossible for her; the more civilized the community
the more repressive the control.

A man married to any woman who is in better control of herself than he
is of himself is married to (but not mated with) a woman who is to him a
prostitute by whatsoever proportion of control she exercises over herself
more than he does over himself or over her. This is true both of the
negative control of repression on her part and of the positive control of
expression. For evidently if her repressive control makes her cold to his
advances she is of the common prostitute type as far as he is concerned.
He evokes no more real response from her than from the casual woman of
the street. However much simulated responsiveness the prostitute may
show, he knows unconsciously its unreality, and feels proportionately
disgusted. In the wife who is cold because of environmental influences in
her youth which the husband has not removed by his wholesome treatment
of her, the objective result is the same as in the prostitute who is
unresponsive from indifference or fear, or from the repression referred

§ 68

Quite as obviously if the wife shows a greater control over the erotic
situation than the husband, a control through expression, he will be
unconsciously repelled by this unnatural factor in the situation,
no matter how much pleased he may be consciously by the rich, warm
femininity he has discovered in her.

It is this positive or expressive control of the erotic factor which
gives to some women the reputation of being designing, gives them the
appearance of being more erotic than the husband or lover, and in some
instances repels the man.

The possibility of greater erotic control on the part of the woman than
the man possesses should be a provoking thought to all husbands who are
overhasty in their handling of the love episode.

Any husband controls his wife erotically, if he actually does, only
by means of controlling himself. At minimum his control of himself is
just enough to secure his wife’s erotic acme preceding or at least
synchronizing with his own. That is the one and only way by which he can
attain and maintain marital success.

§ 69

The love drama is the term that applies to the relations of one man and
one woman for the time when they devote themselves to each other. It may
be an hour or a lifetime, but the hour-long period surely is a pitiful
experience, a one-act farce, compared with the grandeur of the lifelong
relation. A man who thinks he prefers a succession of short periods with
different women condemns himself unnecessarily to a course of action
which resembles the career of a tea-tester. He may become a connoisseur
in various flavours but he cannot learn much about women. He is a narrow
specialist with really no wide knowledge. Moreover such a man almost
never tests his own effect on women, but merely the different effects of
women on himself; and is therefore merely autoerotic, merely playing with
himself; and his various instruments are virtually impersonal.

§ 70

Man is instinctively embarrassed upon rousing a woman to full passion,
and finding it plays so much greater a part in her life than in his, and
that it requires so much more attention on his part than he feels he has
time to give.

That may explain why some men are so easily satisfied with a woman’s half
love and shy from it when it begins fully to develop. They run from one
woman to another, shirking the labour of drinking because they have not
the stomach to drink love to the lees.

“Sippers,” they might be called, or “tea-testers.” The tester is doomed
to a sample. He not only never consumes a full cup but never swallows a
drop. He has not the power to hold out. No man could drink a hundred cups
of different consignments of tea. Nor can one man thoroughly experience
more than one woman. The sippers of women would be as disconcerted as a
tea-tester who should be ordered to drink full cups of tea to report on
a hundred samples, if they were expected really to know the women they
sample. Their disconcertment would amount to an actual impotence.

§ 71

The essential unsatisfactoriness of the promiscuous sex life is
experienced poignantly by most men who attempt it. One wealthy man who
kept numerous mistresses, seventeen at one time, to be exact, came to an
analyst to see if he could not get some help in unifying his life. It
was not that he had any troubles coming from any acts on the part of the
women. Most of them knew of his relations with the others, and professed,
at any rate, to be free from jealousy. This is enough to show that he did
not love any of them.

Half consciously he realized that he had lost or never learned the truly
erotic art and though he attended to the large businesses he owned, he
felt a complete dissatisfaction with his own life not because it was
sinful and criminal but because it did not give him any real sense of
accomplishment. He was unmarried and among his large acquaintance of
marriageable young women there was one, whose femininity, he recognized,
was so rich that while, for many reasons he would have liked to propose
marriage to her, he knew he would be unable to control her erotism.

Knowing full well that he controlled the erotism of not a single one of
his seventeen mistresses, he correctly inferred that his methods were
faulty, and sought confidential help from the analyst to bring into full
consciousness the reasons for his attempting in the future to cultivate a
true and deep love for one woman.

His methods were shown to be faulty because of the fact that his
clandestine relations with the numerous women were on a plane exclusively
or too predominantly physical. He was made to realize that love is
not love that does not include the entire personality of the lover,
physical, mental and spiritual.

§ 72

The confrontation of a shallow sipper like this with really profound
femininity is a test of virility in the highest erotic sense. The man
perverted by traditional views of masculinity, which overvalue the
physical side, and unenlightened by the modern psychology of love is face
to face with a situation for which he is utterly unprepared.

A man’s so-called satisfaction, then, with the superficial surrender of
a woman up to the point where she consents to let him try to control her
erotism is not, however, satisfaction at all but a withdrawal from a test
of virility. This primary consent on the woman’s part is not a submission
but merely in effect a consent to examine or as it were to make a survey
of his manliness. Of this she is, of course, entirely unconscious. If she
were conscious of it she would have one of the traits of the promiscuous
woman. But even if it is unconscious in her it is just as operative as if
it were conscious. And the result of the test is also unconscious in the
woman, if the test shows that the man is found wanting.

Her reaction to the man found wanting is as various as is the upbringing
of women, from the immediate rejection in divorce on the grounds of
incompatibility to the lifelong slavery in which she gradually withers.

Under the present inanely stupid method of bringing up women in total
ignorance of sex, and in blindness to the truly erotic, a woman has no
means whatever of estimating a man’s erotic virility before marriage and
practically no standard of judging him after. If she had, she might do
something to get him to learn of the existence of true mating.

And if she could know and could tell her husband how he failed, she would
then have a chance of becoming happy. No really human man will choose
the greater of two evils or refuse the greater of two good things, no
matter when or how that choice is offered to him, although to him it may
be humiliating whether first or last, to have it laid before him by the

§ 73

But no whole man will be other than fired by this consent to test. If he
is cloyed by it, his being so demonstrates his inadequacy; it proves his
anesthesia, his insensibility, his blindness to the future possibilities
of complete binary love-living.

To him this failure of his, this revulsion of feeling at the precise
moment when he has entered the very lists of love, this slacker’s
attitude, seems not a desertion on his part, not a failure of his, but
a sudden loss of charm on her part. She is, upon trial, not what he had
expected and longed for. But the failure, the loss of charm are his, not
hers. He ought to be the charmer. He ought to have been informed that it
is his privilege and power to attain the pleasure of putting his woman
into another world of sheer exuberant joy—that his own pleasure in life
can be attained by no other means; and that the consent of the woman to
be his wife is a consent not to take one step with him, and then have
him vanish, but to travel the path of life-love to its end—a path that
is long and joyous, a path from which no seeing man, no man with eyes of
love, can ever wish to depart. For with him is happiness personified and
before him and leading him on is light.

§ 74

The acts and scenes and various episodes and strophes of this lifelong
drama are never more than parts, and are organically related each to the
other and to the whole life poem. No matter what one’s egoistic-social
impulses and activities are, the racial theme, i.e., emotional culture
and development, should be as far as possible continuous and its phrases
related. The racial theme is organic, emotional. The narrower national,
or sectional, theme in life is the intellectual one.

For the so-called sexual act the term _love episode_ has been substituted
in this book. Like a duet on an operatic stage it should be just as
much a combination of the melody of the emotions of each of the two
partners, and the harmony of both of their orchestras of emotions, as are
the melody and harmony arranged by the composer of an opera score. The
husband should be the composer.

It will be replied that the ordinary man is not of the intellectual
calibre of the Wagners, Gounods, and Verdis, and that if the love life is
to be so exalted in the ordinary marriage it would be a hopeless task,
for so few men have the intellectuality to create a work of art of such

But the greatness of composers and poets consists in their approaching
so near to life with media so inorganic as sound and sight; and while
music is enjoyed by most people, different styles and grades of music
have the characteristic of bringing the melody and harmony to a definite
and gratifying end. Music therefore essentially consists of the art of
producing a tension and finally a relaxation of human emotions by means
of sound.

Love as an art consists of the same production of tension and relaxation
in a rhythm whose first pulsation begins even in childhood and whose last
is coincident with the final heartbeat of the individual.

§ 75

Love, in the sense used above, practically includes every action of the
husband or wife in relation to each other, from the beginning of the
first act of love-living to the end of their joint life.

The love episode is not a violent activity for a brief space of five or
ten minutes. In its highest form it begins when either of the pair thinks
of any part of it. A true work of erotic art will progress from these
thoughts, through all the phases of verbal mention, or actual carrying
out of any preliminary—all the various verbal and other endearments, all
the caresses and changing contacts, in multitudinous variety of external
circumstances. It will progress through the purely physical part of it,
or that part which is regarded as purely physical (but which never is,
exclusively), and will continue for an hour to a day after the erotic

During this post-acme time all the thoughts and emotions of each will be
referred to the past episode and not to any future one. In the interim
between the evanescence of these thought-reverberations, and the growing
tension of another approaching love episode there may be a space of some
hours or a day or two, but, where there is a fully expressed love life,
never more than that.

§ 76

There is an unmistakable sign when the union of the two natures of a
man and a woman has taken place. It is not the procreation of children,
it is not living together only, it is not a joint bank account or any
mere superficial unity or congeniality of external (egoistic-social)
interests; but it is an emotional reaction at a time of intimate physical
communion, a flood of feeling of an absolutely unique character, which,
once experienced, leads true lovers to say that nothing in the world they
have ever heard of could be in any respect like it—a flood of feeling,
which, like the perigee tide, enters and fills every nook and cranny of
the being of each, just as the waters of an estuary rise and fill and
overflow when the sun and the moon both pull together and the wind blows
into the river’s mouth.

And the first time that emotional flood tide is experienced is nothing to
what later psychosomatic communion may attain. Man and wife looking back
on their honeymoon thirty years before realize poignantly how infinitely
more exalted and overwhelming is their present-day love communion than
were the unsteady, brief and trembling, uncoördinated embraces of their
early married life. True, they looked at each other with eyes of love
long years before, but such simple, ignorant, artless infantile eyes,
that looked without seeing half there was to see. They have learned
each other as they never could have learned any two, much less three or
more, of the other sex. Each has learned how to give, and that riches
consist only in power to give, and that power to give is developed only
by giving, just as skill in swimming comes from swimming and not from
standing on the shore.

So they immerge each day into the invigorating ocean, and glory in the
rise and fall of its surf, in its colour and in its refreshing coolness;
and when they become too old to swim, they will sit by the open fire
and exchange sweet reminiscences of bygone plunges, until their spirits
together breast the waves of infinity and eternity forever.

§ 77

One of the factors of the general marital muddle that constitutes most
marriages is the ignorance of husband or wife, or both, about whether
their sex life, if they still continue it, is normal. What are the
evidences that the consummation of marital life has taken place as
satisfactorily as could be wished, or as could occur with the pair in
question, or (as is supposed at any rate) takes place with the newly
married lovers on their honeymoon?

It is not enough merely to be able to say they are happy, for they will
sometimes say so whether they know they are or not, and they will in some
cases not know. In fact few people in or out of the wedded state know
whether they are truly happy or not or how to become happy if they are
not so.

If a husband and wife are happy together they will have begun to make
their marital life a love drama, by the frequent enactment of the love
episode as described in these pages and their outlook upon life will be
buoyant and positive.

§ 78

In _The Secret Places of the Heart_, H. G. Wells has plainly indicated
that the love episode has taken place between Sir Richmond Hardy and Miss
Grammont. He writes only of the calm which follows the emotional storm,
and in these words (p. 253):

“At the breakfast table it was Belinda (Miss Grammont’s companion) who
was the most nervous of the three, the most moved, the most disposed to
throw a sacramental air over their last meal together. Her companions had
passed beyond the idea of separation; it was as if they now cherished a
secret satisfaction at the high dignity of their parting. Belinda in some
way perceived they had become different. They were no longer tremulous
lovers. They seemed sure of one another and with a new pride in their

§ 79

Some husbands treat their wives with a satisfactory erotic technique
from the first, and a few continue it through their entire married life.
Others err from the first, through ignorance, and still others are
backsliders in the pursuit of the erotic art; and true love departs from

There have been others who by accident have found after years of wedded
life the key to marital happiness, or have been instructed by some
erotologist—some physician who knows or some intimate friend.

The story of one husband who happened to discover for himself a secret
that had escaped him for years is here given:

It was in the twentieth year of their marriage. Their son was eighteen
and their daughter sixteen. Another daughter was not yet born.

They were off for a week in the month of August in the Adirondacks. All
the morning they had tramped over the hills until they came to a lake,
solitary, shut in by forests, a mountain overtowering the side opposite
them—reflected green and blue in the waters that met their eyes as they
approached a beach of fine white sand.

Sitting awhile they rejoiced in having found so fine a place to eat
their lunch. They were miles from any human habitation. A heron floated
majestically through the air. A kingfisher hurried noisily athwart their
view. A fish jumped out of the water a dozen rods away and made a circle
of waves which slowly enlarged until it became lost to sight.

Instinctively they both threw off their clothes and stepped down to the
water’s edge hand in hand.

“I’ll beat you in!”

“Let’s swim to that little island.”

In they splashed and swam the first few yards under water, he leading the
way, she following, but his eyes closely watching for any indication on
her part of fatigue.

“Stay near me, Matey, there’s nothing but water where I am.”

“All right, Naiade, put your hand on my shoulder and rest awhile. We’re
almost there!”

He felt her warm hand on his shoulder and her thumb on the back of his
neck, and the warmth of the sun on his rapidly drying hair—there in the
pure water almost arrived at the wooded islet. He felt the impact of the
water on his flank stirred by the leisurely motions of her other hand and
arm as she made as if to help him tow her to shore.

They climbed up and sat on a mossy bank out of sight of every living
thing, looking from a shady spot at the lake shimmering in the sunlight.

“Our lunch is over there. We should have brought it with us. Nevertheless
I’ll feed upon thy lips, Corinna.

“What an experience this is! I never had a swim like this before. A
perfect day and a perfect place. Isolation complete. Thou beside me
singing in the wilderness, but this is a very Eden and we are undisputed
owners of it for this hour. I’m rich in time. I’d just as soon stay here
till sunset. An absolutely perfect place to rest and play. I feel as if
I could do anything—omnipotent as the gods of old, dependent on nothing.
It thrills me to think of myself—just me—and you—just you—the only humans
in all the world we see. If I were a magician I’d turn this moss into a
magic carpet and we’d fly through space.”

“Oh, Matey dear, I feel as if I _were_ flying! Tell me more like that.
Continue the story. Tell it softly close in my ear.”

“Up, out from this islet we are flying, without deafening roar of
airplane engine, but just soaring, soaring, wheeling in the air like
eagles, you and I together. Far subtler motion than the intermittent
strokes with which we paddled to that green islet now so far below us.
Blue sky all about and sunshine warm upon my shoulders and your breasts.
See down below us now a cloud. See our silhouette dotting the grey
mist of it. And look, dearest! That rainbow of which our shadow is the
centre. It makes a complete circle. Did you ever seen the whole circle of
iridescence like that? You never could on earth. Look again, for soon we
shall pass that cloud. A perfect circle of perfect rainbow colours—symbol
of infinite beauty.”

“Stop, Matey, this flight of yours is too thrilling. Take me down to

       *       *       *       *       *

“Matey, dear, in all our twenty years of love, I never knew you till this
day. Why did you not teach me about you before this?”

They were now slowly swimming through the placid waters of the lake
toward the beach of white sand whence they had adventurously departed two
hours before. The sun warmed their heads and the cool waters of the lake
caressed their glowing bodies.

They stepped upon the sandy beach again.

They devoured their lunch with eagerness.

They now, while eating, having dried in the sun, by force of habit put on
their conventional incumbrances of sex-differentiating toggery, took up
their staffs and turned their backs upon the lake with its silvery waves
and white sandy beach and slowly wended their way hand in hand through
the forest, to the road leading to the inn.

As they walked along the mountain road slipping on stones and gravel each
saw in the other’s eyes a new flame of love never lighted there before.

“I wonder, Matey, what it was that made this day’s adventure the grand
adventure of my life? I never saw you look so fine before. I never felt
closer to you than I do this minute. Why have you never before told me a
story like that, that fired my imagination as yours seemed to be?”

“I suppose I never felt fired just that way myself. Ideas occurred to me
I’d never had before. Besides, I’ve done a pile of thinking lately—and
reading, too. I think I’ve succeeded in piecing out a pretty good fairy
tale about us. It makes me much more interested in your view of the world
than ever I was before. But I can tell you other stories now. I think
I’ve learned how to fire your imagination.”

“You have, indeed! I’m eager for the next. When will it be?”

“Almost any time we have an hour or two alone. We need time to get up
steam, so to speak. We don’t need to swim in a mountain lake every time
either. I think you got your particular thrill because you had me and my
mind absolutely all to yourself.”

“Can I ever get that again?”

“Surely, dear heart, for when I saw for the first time that look in your
eyes, which was not joy alone but pure fire, I learned something about
you I never knew before. I realized that you yourself are a far more
complex and interesting personality with infinitely more potentialities
than ever I had dreamed of. Do you think now I would ever stop telling
you stories like that?”

“I don’t remember a word of it except the perfect rainbow circle. The
rest was silence. But it had somehow a world of meaning for me. I know
we swam. I know we couldn’t fly, but you made me think we did, which is
quite as good for me.”

§ 80

“Dear, why has it taken us twenty years to love each other as we do now?”

“It was our ignorance, which was so dense that it did not know it
was ignorant. That’s the blackest kind. What we knew was that we had
affection for each other, and for our children, but the lack of passion
was not clearly sensed, because there was no article in our creed of
love that declared passion to be a necessary factor in our marriage. We
knew the phrase ‘all in all to each other’; we identified ourselves in
countless superficial ways in addition to the really solid identification
represented in our children, but while we did it with our intellects we
really did not do it with our hearts. We have not been truly united,
truly fused, until this day.

“It needn’t have taken us twenty years, or even one year, for there
are people who instinctively soar in the same ecstatic flight in their
honeymoon, that we achieved only after twenty years of external devotion
and watchfulness. But those whose early married life is instantly
complete in total physical and emotional fusion think everyone else is
the same as they are and they don’t know what they _have_ any more than
we did not know what we did not have. A colour-blind man in a world
of people all colour-blind would not suspect his affliction. Possibly
it wouldn’t be an affliction. He might only laugh at the extraordinary
persons who say they can see colours in things visible, just as we now
consider people freaks who say they can see colour in sounds.”

“Do you think, dear, that most people are blind to the kind of love we
see now?”

“I do, for the vision of the circular rainbow on top of the cloud is
something that really requires a certain fine sensitivity that is the
product of civilization, and depends on the many factors of civilized
life. I could not, as my remote ancestors could, carry you off your feet
in a literal sense, and dominate you by sheer physical strength, which
would have been the only earthbound flight possible with men of that age.
Civilization has transmuted physical strength into mental, moral and
spiritual strength. And just as physical strength was sensibly evident
in every action and motion of the body, so now, in our present state of
civilization, it is obscured or obliterated and every mental reaction to
our environment is taking its place. To some women the strength of this
mental reaction is invisible, and even today they can love with passion
only the physically perfect man. But the majority of women now have been
educated to the point of realizing that physical strength may be present
in men whose mental and moral development is very small and that mental
and moral strength may exist even in the men whose physique is slight and
even frail.”

“Do you think you’re so much stronger mentally, morally and spiritually
than you were? Did you cultivate that strength consciously? Could you
tell others how to do it?”

“Yes, dear one, to all three questions, and so are you. The thing that
finally touched off this day’s passionate union was our realization,
helped by the increasing frankness forced by modern science on all vital
matters, that sex life is a part of the love life, and that not only
is sex not exclusively physical, but it is more mental than physical.
Men as ancient as Ovid knew that love is an art, but they did not know
it as well as we do today. If it is an art, it can be taught, it must
be taught. The reason it has not been taught is the taboo on sex. But
that is being lifted gradually and people are beginning to realize
that sexless love is as impossible as birth is impossible without the
fusion of male and female germ cells. The ancient love manuals were all
composed by men to enable men to get greater physical pleasure out of
what they called love. The modern idea is that man and woman together
are each to contribute an equal and complementary part to a spiritual
fusion comparable to the fusion of two human germ cells, and that as the
male cell causes a reaction on the entirety of the female cell, so the
female cell causes a total reaction on the entirety of the male cell.
To say that either absorbs the other is quite misleading. They stand
side by side and merely melt together, forming another different cell
which is the combination of all the properties of the two. This idea of
love implies that the two lovers be equally frank and open in every way,
concealing nothing of their own feelings from each other.”

“But, dearest, some women, I’m sure, are unable to express themselves,
and others instinctively avoid revealing their true feelings, fearing
perhaps to reveal because they may be giving away something it might be
to their advantage to keep. They think that if they let any man, even
their newly married husband, know how much they love him, they will
cheapen themselves in their husband’s eyes, where they desire to be
valued the most.”

“Do you think you would love me less if you felt you owned me less? If
you did, your love has possibly too much of ownership in it. Love is not
possession, any more than it is the inability to possess.”

§ 81

The erotic acme is the detumescence following a tumescence which
activates, in order to secure, a repose which can exist in consciousness
only by contrast with the intense activity, vivification and vitalization
of spheres of experience otherwise remaining without or beyond one’s ken.

A kiss which is ever so little retarded, a youth laying softly his lips
on those of a fair maiden, and, for the period of a breath or two not
taking them away, feeling that not alone the lips touched hers nor yet
only his arms embraced her, is filled with a natural response which
tingles through his frame to his very fingertips and makes soft and
undulating the sea crag on which they stand. More of her at once would be
too keen a pleasure, would make him faintly dizzy with a joy to which he
is unoriented.

The halo of that first kiss fades not in a day but lingers through his
sleep, recurring poignantly like the after image of the sun caught by
chance directly in his eyes.

All his being is pervaded by the sweet breathlessness of that virgin
experience of a maiden’s lips, a touch that spreads like fire through his
body and craves quenching by another kiss which but extends the influence
of the first.

“Our lips have met, a touch compared with which our hand-clasp was a
grinding of rocks in the mad surging of the ocean surf.

“Our lips have met, a fragrance above the honeysuckle and the roses of
the hedge.

“Our lips have met, our breasts have asked us too, why should not they
repose on one another. Our hands have known each other’s sides, and
flanks have questioned why they also might not have the soft contact.

“Why should not all the remotest parts of us clamor to share in this
meeting of two lovers’ lips? Each of us is whole and every part fired to
yearn for what every other part feels.

“I look into your eyes and see the world. All that invites to do and feel
and learn. There’s not a drop of blood within my veins that does not
hurry on its joyous course, to tell the uttermost confines of me, that
here in you I find a counterpart, for every region of my living self.

“We cannot part for hours. This sandy shore, warm with an August sun,
shall be our couch, remote from interruption. You are mine and I am yours
for now and evermore. Not till I know you all, and you feel me pervading
all the regions of your soul, shall we be able then to take anew the
threads of our existence in the world and weave with them a common robe
for both in which enclosed we act toward our fellows, a single person
binary in form.”

       *       *       *       *       *

“My breathing now is calm like yours; our blood is throbbing softly in
our veins, we two went through a fire together, keen, that welded our two
spirits into one—inseparable, self-contained, at rest.

“Are other men and women thus close fused, each through the other’s eyes
beholding life? If not, dear one, the only other joy, not yet by us slow
tasted, is to look and see how we can make them also feel the deep-down
inner satisfaction pierce the very roots of their own being too, without
which we should lack companionship, and feel ourselves unique and lonely.
Thus, by throwing this same brilliant light of life with which we have
ourselves been newly filled, about us, we can see what ne’er before we
saw back in the times when naught we knew of this glad melting each in
other’s soul here on the sandy rock-bound ocean shore, where wave and
gravel mingle, air and sea and sun and sky; one universal touch and
penetration of each other’s heart. Now we are whole that fragments were

§ 82

The rationalistic thought may occur to some men that a woman’s all can
be taken at one love episode. It may come from her uttering words to the
effect that she is all his. If _his_ means _with his destructive mark
on it_ she is utterly his, to be sure, if he has ruined her. But by a
perfect love episode one can ruin only the egoistic-social value of this
woman for some other man. For any other man her sexual value would be
only increased by the proper kind of love episode.

But her erotic value is something that can exist only for the man whom
she loves and who loves her. The first properly erotic love episode
can never destroy or ruin but only create, or begin the creation, of a
woman out of a gynecoid female. A true woman according to the use of the
term in this book is a female who has become fused with a male. Then
she becomes a woman and he a man. The nature of this fusion has been
discussed elsewhere.

§ 83

As a woman’s all cannot be taken at one love episode, except that “all”
which is constituted by her strictly egoistic-social property value, it
follows that in the true erotic sense, nothing is taken unless possibly
as one should chip a piece of marble from a block out of which one was to
carve a statue of the Goddess of Love. The fragment of marble chiselled
away at the first stroke of the hammer is no part of the statue.

§ 84

The thought that the husband is getting an egoistic-socially valuable
possession by the exercise of his rights at the first love episode is
therefore quite absurd. He is performing an act which is in the nature of
a creation, if rightly carried out, but which is destruction if he does
not himself hold his instincts under absolute control.

That the love episode does not take away from woman anything that makes
her poorer is indicated by the fact, noticed by Ellis and others,
that woman’s erotic nature is deeper and stronger than man’s. For the
development of this great erotic nature it is as absolutely necessary for
her to be controlled by a man quite master of his own sex instincts, as
it is necessary for an ovum to be met by a zoösperm, if it is going to
develop any further than its ovum condition.

At a single love episode, neither can the woman’s all be taken by a man
nor can her development be completed. The first episode is only the
beginning of a development, that needs the entire excess energies of her
man for the rest of their joint lives. In the sections on virginity it
will also appear that except in a superficial egoistic-social sense, her
psychical virginity cannot always be terminated at the first love episode.

§ 85

The thought that she has given her all to him is worked out still further
in the irrational conclusion, which comes to some men’s minds, that there
may be nothing left for himself for a future occasion. Therefore he will
not take all this time, so as to leave a little for next time.

Possibly getting all of her at one stroke may be the root thought in Don
Juanism. _Jus primæ noctis_ may have originated from the idea that the
noble lord should get all there was in the vicinity to get; and he was
exercising his right to own and get everything in sight. The men who
cool in their affections (or whose passions cool) immediately after
the possession of the persons of their love objects may be inspired by
exactly this egoistic-social thought, that there is a possession that may
be acquired by means of one love episode, after which the woman has no
more to give.

§ 86

In phantasying, in his own ecstasy, the complete surrender of the woman
(cf. § 158), a man may also phantasy her being exhausted, dry like an
eaten orange, or, like a flower, drained of its honey by a bee; not
realizing that the beginning of a woman’s love is only the beginning of
an infinite growth, which he alone is able to develop for himself, and
which no other man can develop for him—that, in short, a man who deserts
one woman after another is simply showing an essentially perverted

What any one of these tasted and rejected women might later be developed
into, in the shape of a full-blooded rich, warm femininity, he has not
the intelligence to conceive. Possibly the cynical roué might say—look at
the older women, are many of them attractive? To which we should reply
no, but the reason they are not is simply that they were not properly
loved into a state of full erotic development, in which they would have
preserved the attractiveness of youth.

§ 87

The only true human love drama is one that has an organic relation to a
whole lifetime of love. To the Don Juan type of ravisher of virgins the
love episode, as part of a life drama with unity in it, does not exist.
He satisfies himself with beginnings, with staking out foundations for
other people to build and live in the homes constructed by their hands,
not realizing, for his imagination is poor and weak, how soon his little
stakes will be pulled up and thrown away by the first workers on the
house, even if they do not entirely reject his plan’s outlines.

The only true love of a man for a woman is that in which he studies her
reactions to his own behaviour, and cultivates that power of his, which
is the innate power residing in any whole man, to control the entire
emotional life of one woman, let her intellectual life be what it may.

“Why,” the man of the world may say, “should any man be satisfied with
only one woman, when, if he has personal attractiveness, he may find
hundreds of women ready to fall into his arms, and may drink the love
life to the dregs?” What Enobarbus said of Cleopatra may be said of any
woman, if she be developed by a man, as she should be.

    Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
    Her infinite variety; other women cloy
    The appetites they feed, but she makes hungry
    Where most she satisfies....

Woman’s infinite variety, supposed in Shakespeare’s day to have been
embodied in the arch-dispenser of delights, Cleopatra, was a rare
phenomenon; but the modern view is that the variety is present in every
woman, just as the fourscore keys are in every piano. In this sense,
then, woman’s infinite variety is dependent on man’s control of her
emotional reactions, no woman being full woman unless and until she has
been completely manned.

§ 88

No human male, however, can completely man more than one woman, any more
than one gonad can unite with more than one other germ cell. Complete
fusion of two cells requires the entirety of one cell uniting with
the entirety of another. This is the type of physical and psychical
immortality. The union of two single cells contains the potentiality
of development of all the qualities inherent in both, but in new

In the psychosomatic union of two individuals there is the same
possibility of infinite variety in the physical and mental reactions,
only if the union between them is, like the fusion of the two single
cells, a complete total and exclusive union each with the other.

The fact that of the thousands of egg cells produced by one woman no
two can fuse with each other, and that of the billions of spermatozoa
produced by one man no two can fuse together, but that any one male germ
cell can completely fuse with any one female germ cell is the prototype
of a perfect full marriage, and is the suggestion that probably no
couples need be unhappy; for happiness is a matter of fusion, and fusion
can be accomplished by the removal of ignorance due to tradition.

§ 89

The right of the wife to experience the erotic acme at every love episode
is only beginning to be admitted. Up to the present time the husband has
generally gone on the principle of taking his wife’s body for the fine
physical catharsis he fancies it produces in himself.

Taking a woman’s body, however, for the fine emotional catharsis, without
“considering too curiously” just how it strikes the woman is manifestly,
to any thoughtful man, merely a one-sided affair. It involves only as
a negative quantity the results of his action upon the woman, because
erotically the result is negative in her case. The most it can do is
to stir her emotions a little, leave her with more or less ungratified
desire, a tension which in the end is most harmful to her.

Only a man whose mentality is below par or undeveloped can feel himself
fully satisfied with an attempt at a purely physical love episode like
this. To his unconscious it can be but the stepping up a step that
isn’t there, a striking out at empty air. For the exaltation (which
would come from passion reciprocated) is indelibly registered on his
unconscious as a negative quantity. It is a dent in a surface intended
by nature to be convex. In the fully developed man all the sensibilities
registering response in the mate are present, and if they are not given
the opportunity to function, the lack of it is definitely recorded in the
unconscious. The man has as much right biologically to a response in his
wife as the wife has a right to be sympathetically handled.

In a time soon to come men will take into consciousness and into
conscious control all instinctive actions, and all these unconscious
lacks; and will so plan their love that the absence of response will
be avoided. The woman’s right to be made to respond will be finally

§ 90

The right of woman to experience such stirring up of unconscious depths
of soul as is caused by the erotic acme of the love episode, and the
advantage to her health and general welfare coming from such stirring
are two separate questions. Havelock Ellis has admitted that the woman’s
right to love and all it can include is not a right in a political or
even an ethical sense, any more than the right to be happy.

But for the existence of the relation of a higher type of erotism to
health of body and mind physiological science is piling up proof every
year. There is a positive relation, a direct connection, of cause and
effect. Only the fullest use of all the faculties makes the fullest and
therefore the happiest life.

Response as an actual manifestation on the wife’s part may be absent
while there is a repressed response present. In other words the desire
and gratification of it may both occur in her, but below the level of
consciousness. A previous attraction which drew her toward her husband
when he was her lover may have been repressed by some gauche behaviour of
his. Desire, even after conscious passion has cooled, may nevertheless
remain in the unconscious. If consciously accepted, desire is accompanied
by a perceptible physical condition of tumescence. If not consciously
accepted, either the tumescence does not enter consciousness or it is not
in the same organs it would be in if one were consciously entertaining

In the absence of the proper or suitable substitute gratification, the
increase of blood supply to specific organs gradually diminishes and the
desire gradually subsides; but there is still left a nerve tension that
is closely bound up with various ideas, images and other predominantly
mental states.

Sex desires may be aroused and even if not appropriately gratified, will
subside of themselves. An automatic relaxation of all tensions regularly
takes place in children, who also are much more facile than adults in the
acceptance of substitute gratifications.

§ 91

But after the sexual synthesis of puberty the desires are not only much
more insistent but much more definite and specific. Still they can be and
are repeatedly repressed by many men and most women. That they can be so
repressed is the reason why asceticism has been so emphasized by many
religions. The religious views of many people render uncomfortable the
actual emergence, into consciousness, of any sexual desires whatever.

If the training of the individual has not been such as to render
conscious the manifestation of the sex desire, it then does not appear as
a tumescence in the genital region, in many cases, but as a swelling or a
pain, or a hardness somewhere else, or as an emotion of disappointment,
disgust or hate. Some deeply religious people seem to prefer these
emotions, in spite of their destructive nature, to the constructive
emotions of truly erotic love.

And we are impressed with the irony of fate which condemns innocent
people to accept an unwholesome in place of a wholesome emotion, and
makes some people think they are justified in telling others what
emotions they shall have.

§ 92

The right of woman to experience the erotic acme would be immediately
conceded by every man, if he could in any way get into his mind a visual
image of mangled feelings. The tortures of Tantalus, Ixion and Sisyphus
of Greek legend should be kept in mind, and the erotically unsatisfied
woman regarded as a living, present human being, thirsty and standing in
the middle of a pool of crystal water, which constantly recedes from her
parched lips as they bend to drink; or tied to a wheel which, as it is
rotated, makes her sick and dizzy; or with huge effort rolling a heavy
stone up a hill that has no ending.

The right of a woman to satisfaction even if not conceded by a
hypothetical monster of selfishness, her husband, might be admitted if
he should be made aware of the detriment to his own psyche received
from her condition. It is surely not an exaggeration to say that to be
in daily relations with any human being who is so twisted and bent by
unrelaxed tensions that she can hardly be called sane, is a fate that
no man would choose unless he perversely wished to drive himself mad.
He might see his own advantage, if not her right, an advantage which he
quite clearly recognizes in all egoistic-social spheres. He will insist
on having his material environment as perfect as possible through his own
personal effort or supervision. He will insist on having the plumbing,
wiring and every other installation of house, garage, shop, store and
factory in the finest possible condition; realizing that any imperfection
will reflect directly upon himself. But he commonly does not see that
the reactions of his wife in the most intimate relations of marital life
should be made, not by mere supervision as of a physician but by his own
personal acts, absolutely perfect in every respect, and that his chief
responsibility in life is to do this very thing, without which all his
other forms of efficiency are of negligible importance.

§ 93

One’s wife is the closest part of one’s objective ego. She is at least
that. Many men are of course careless of their own bodies and personal
appearance. They recognize, however, that the responsibility for these is
their own and no one else’s. But their wives are above all things their
complementary bodies, and practically as much their own responsibility
as their own personal corporeal systems. A man may conceivably think his
wife has no right to happiness but as part of himself he must see that
she is really happy. She is as important for his welfare at least as his
arms or legs, which he would not choose to have cramped or palsied. Yet a
man with an unsatisfied wife is as personally and intimately defective in
himself as if he had a withered hand, and he is much more responsible for
the wife’s condition than he is for that of his other members.

§ 94

In the non-fecundating periods in the lives of the lower animals they
spend their energies in either seeking food or hibernating. We humans,
after the work of providing food and shelter is finished, have a surplus
of energy to work off. After procreating our children we need to develop,
in a sense to create, ourselves as humans advancing above the animals,
not as humans descending to animal levels. This development has been
tried in various ways by different men and women in different ages. Some
have given their energies to religion, to philanthropy, to charity, to
arts, to commerce. Few have seen the importance of developing the proper
human emotions.

At the present stage of civilization all objects of study, except the
last, have been worked over so thoroughly that there is nothing new under
the sun. Religions have been analyzed, codified, classified; philanthropy
and charity have been endowed, institutionalized and organized. There
seems no longer any development possible in the technique of the
various arts comparable to what was done centuries ago. Commerce and
applied science are already elaborated into an almost incomprehensible
complexity. Human emotions, however, and _par excellence_ love, have only
just begun to be sensed as a new field and source of human welfare.

It would seem a strange prophecy to make (yet all prophecies are
strange) that, inside of five hundred years, or even fifty years, men’s
excess energies would be devoted to love-making, instead of almost
exclusively to the pursuit of egoistic-social ends. And yet that is
what the renaissance of the erotic values of life will certainly bring
about. Tarde says that “if the ambition of power, the regal wealth of
American or European millionairism once seemed nobler, love now more
and more attracts to itself the best and highest parts of the soul,
where lies the hidden ferment of all that is greatest in science and
art, and more and more those studious and artist souls multiply who,
intent on their peaceful activities, hold in horror the business men
and the politicians and will one day succeed in driving them back. That
surely will be the great and capital revolution of humanity, an active
psychological revolution; the recognized preponderance of the meditative
and contemplative, the lover’s side of the human soul, over the feverish,
expansive, rapacious and ambitious side. And then it will be understood
that one of the greatest of social problems, perhaps the most arduous of
all, has been the problem of love.”

§ 95

Let it not be thought that truly and sublimely intense erotic occupation
is a thing that weakens men for the carrying out of great projects. The
greatest project is the successful living together of men and nations,
and this has not been approached, being as far from us now as the
nearest fixed star. The union of man and woman into the complete binary
individual is the first and essential step toward the formation of the
social group which will have its first perfectly successful existence
when all its individuals are binaries consisting each of a man and a
woman who have become fused into an individual.

Then and not until then will questions of class, nationality and race be
settled. There will probably be no separate and mutually antagonistic
nations. Men will not be strong enough to create the hologamous[17]
binary individual until they are emotionally strong enough and simple
enough to realize the supremacy of erotic over egoistic-social values.

§ 96

A fundamental principle of erotics is that in the relation of husband
and wife, this condition of preparedness for the husband’s relaxation of
his erotic tension is the erotic acme of the wife herself. This is the
pattern referred to at the beginning of the last section.

The emotional relaxation of the husband is, from the biological
viewpoint, essentially inept and silly if it occurs in the presence of
a woman unprepared for it. It is ridiculous enough anywhere else than
in the woman’s _presence_; but she is not all present, spiritually,
mentally, psychically, no matter how close physically, if she be not
herself in the very climax of erotic acme. His emotional relaxation,
occurring at any time previous to the complete alignment of the totality
of her personality solely in the erotic direction is as inept as falling
into the water completely clothed.

It is as if Nature had said unambiguously to man:

“Your happiness depends on your own emotional control of the emotions
of your mate. She should never know that you have lost control of your
emotions. If you do, you are a mere puling infant. It is therefore your
duty to make her lose control of her erotic emotions.

“Only in case you are able to exalt her to this altitude of supermundane
excitement, have you any right to lose control of your own emotions.
You can then let them go, give free rein to them; and you will probably
both come to at the same time, she not knowing definitely exactly what
has happened to her, but surprised, delighted, awed, overwhelmed at the
beauty and wonder of it. She knew that being in love was pleasant. She
did not know that the reward of being in love was a flight of illimitable
velocity through the azure empyrean beyond the stars and back again.”


    Burning—relentless burning—
    With the gently caressing fires that will not be calmed.
    A delicious sense of stifling.
    Suddenly a fierce storm of sharp, exquisite pains ...
    Like little electric needle shocks ...
    Pierces every tiny part of your body—
    Till you are raised out of this earth.

    A great calm comes over you then—
    And you open languorously, luxuriously
    Like an enormous, fresh passion flower opens its petals to the sun.
    Something comes and snuggles into its petals like a honey bee
    And they slowly close again—and then—just nothing then—
    The sensation of having no sensations—great peace, vast peace—and
    Nothing, nothing, nothing.

                              —FLORENCE E. VON WIEN.

§ 97

So far as the woman’s slower progress than man’s toward the climax
requires, as much time as possible should be given to each detail of the
love episode. It will be shown in the chapter on control[18] that this
time, and the opportunity for observation which it gives, is an important
factor in the essentially human element of male control. Only its
crassest animal form, its acutest gasp, is “brief as the lightning in the
collied night.”

In the love episode, at the time when contact is deepest and most
intense, one sees, if one reasons biologically, that the time that would
be chosen by nature for the injection of spermatozoa (of the millions of
which only one is to be chosen by chance to be united to the single ovum
ordinarily developed each month) is the time when the container which is
destined to be the seat of the future life was either most open or most
turned toward the source of the spermatozoa.

As it is believed that the woman’s erotic acme is either coincident with
or associated with this change in shape of the innermost organ, we have
here a prototype giving more rationally the pattern for carrying out this
phase of the love episode.

In other words the wife is to be prepared for an emotional cataclysm on
the part of the husband. Just as the organs of any two animals have to
come together simultaneously so not only is this apposition necessary in
humans, but in them there is a psychical apposition, a rapport of purely
spiritual quality needed in order that the real spiritual fusion may take

§ 98

In animals simultaneity is gained by the same mechanism as that which
arranges for cross fertilization of some plants, i.e., the time for the
impregnation is short or instantaneous in one sex and long in the other.
In animals the female is ready only for a short time, the male always.
The female animal is prepared by physiological changes, the female human
by psychical development. In humans the female is supposed by some men
to be always ready until by their ignorance and diabolical treatment
they find their women never ready. That which occurs in an animal is a
purely physiological heat. In women it has dwindled into almost vestigial
proportions in comparison to the psychically caused excitement. This
psychic element is enough, however (if rightly understood and managed
by the man), to make it safe to say that a woman may always be made
ready, even though by her own constitution and upbringing she may never
know it and so not admit it. The female animal never suffers the male’s
approaches except in her estrual period. Man has it in his power to cause
in woman the psychic analogue of the estrus at any time.

§ 99

Ellis (op. cit., III, 251) remarks that the sexual impulse tends to
involve, to a greater extent in women than in men, the higher psychic
region. Therefore sex, tending in men to be exclusively physical, needs
in them to be raised to the erotic level of the psychical, in order to
give man the master key to the situation. Thus the rapport (which is
psychical and not physical) can be established. The greater psychic
diffusion of love instincts in woman gives man the opportunity for a
complete dominance over her erotism as soon as he learns to exercise
it. In woman’s sexuality “lies the earth, all Danaë to the stars,”
symbolizing the direction from which man should approach woman, from a
psychically more exalted position, and not from below, like mephitic air
from a cave.

As one cannot put a finger into a ring, unless a ring is there, so in the
love episode the husband must be sure that his emotional power will not,
like a blow wasted in the air, fall upon a situation most inappropriate,
unreceptive and unproductive of the end sought. A blacksmith must be sure
the anvil is in place before he takes up his hammer.

It is obvious that, if the relaxation of erotic tension on the man’s part
is to do the work, which it certainly has to do, it must have a condition
which is appropriate for the most telling effect of this work. One of
the best ways in which this condition can be produced in some women is
outlined in the following section.

§ 100

A technique of the love episode has been described and advocated under
several names (Karezza, Male Continence, Dr. Zugassent’s Discovery, etc.)
which consists in that degree of virile control whereby, while the erotic
acme may be produced in the wife, the husband reserves his. There is no
doubt whatever that this technique is of greatest possible advantage to
the wife, if she herself reaches the acme. Opinions differ as to its
possible harm for the husband. It was the principle which the Oneida
Community (organized in 1847 and discontinued as a eugenic experiment
in 1879) followed for the 30 years of its existence with no observable
injury to the men. It is also spontaneously discovered and sporadically
used by married couples at the present day independently of the
propaganda in its favour, conducted by a woman writer who has published
the book _Karezza_.[19]

There is also no doubt whatever that only a comparatively few men are
willing, and some fewer are quite unable to control themselves to this
degree necessary to postpone their own erotic acme until a future time.
The ability to do this is the most potent factor possible in producing
that superiority of virile over feminine power which forms the greatest
fusing medium between the two partners.

§ 101

Indeed, it may be confidently asserted that the accomplishment of this
erotic _tour de force_ on the part of the husband (during which he may
observe the greatest possible effect that man can have upon woman)
gives the husband a sense of exaltation that could not be paralleled, a
feeling of power that produces in him a keenness and penetrating sense of
satisfaction that he has never before felt. After an experience of this
kind, he is fully alive, as he never was before, to the possibilities
of erotic ecstasy emanating from the preliminaries and every several and
separate phase of the love episode as responded to by his wife.

This entire reconstruction of the love episode not only throws into
strong light the value of the preliminary and intermediary phases of the
love episode, but it puts, in the husband’s mind, so much value on the
first and second acts of the play that the actual occurrence of his own
erotic acme has then a much lessened importance.

If he can so transform his wife, as he sees her transformed before his
very eyes, and perceives in every sense quality of consciousness, and
if he can thus express his love any time he wishes, his former hurried,
perfunctory and mechanical sexuality appears to him as a dried leaf as
compared to the full-blown rose of his present triumph. He recognizes
that he has stepped from one level of existence to a higher plane of
life, and that he is human in a new and enlarged sense.

§ 102

Kisses may stale but the occasional practice of this reserve on the
husband’s part in the love episode will never stale, but will compare
to the recharging of an exhausted battery, to the filling of a vessel
drained, to the incoming tide. It is a far greater stimulant to happiness
of all kinds than anything else discovered by mankind.

That this is rare and exceedingly hard to get, and that it involves
self-control on the part of the husband and abandonment of self-control
on the part of the wife, makes it like one of those elements in the
erotic situation mentioned by Freud as having been necessarily injected
into it by man, whenever he found love too easy and too free.

“It is easy to prove that the psychical value of the need for love
sinks, as soon as its satisfaction is made easy. An obstruction is
needed to drive the libido upward, and where the natural obstructions to
satisfaction do not apply, men have at all times conventionally inserted
them, in order to be able to enjoy love. This is true of individuals
as well as of nations. In times when the satisfaction of love found no
difficulties, as occasionally during the fall of ancient civilizations,
love became worthless and life empty, and there was necessary a strong
reactionary influence to restore the indispensable emotional values.”[20]

It is hard enough for any man to hold in check any instinct; but, when
he is holding the love instinct in check, in the face of everything
including his wife herself, unanimously calling upon him to throw away
all restraint, it becomes the most difficult, and (because of its
results, not its difficulty) the most desirable accomplishment possible.

It is hard for a woman of refinement, culture and puritanical antecedents
to relax the inhibitions necessary to be relaxed in order for her to gain
her own erotic acme. If she realizes that her husband must have his,
anyway, regardless of hers, this realization makes her still less able to

§ 103

If on the other hand she is assured by experience from the first that her
erotic acme will be taken care of with absolute reliability by the only
person in the world who can insure its coming, her own inhibitions are
much more likely to be overcome, and she to become relaxed and open to
him at his approach.

The vital importance, therefore, to the man, of doing everything in his
power to make himself absolutely sure, even from the very first, that the
erotic needs of his wife are amply taken care of by him, will be clearly
seen when he realizes that if he does not do it himself, instinct (which
is as strong in a woman as it is in a man) will ceaselessly pull her in
the direction of getting these needs supplied by some other man. If the
husband has not the strength of will to overcome his own instincts to the
minor degree of retarding, for his wife’s health, the relaxation of his
own erotic tension he will be unable consistently to blame her.

Man’s historic remedy for this defect in himself—namely, shutting up his
woman behind the doors of a harem—and the remedy that followed this, of
shutting her in behind psychic bars of repressions and inhibitions, is
the infantile method of force. Its success has been slight. The only
thing that doors and locks confine is the body, and perhaps that was
all he wanted. And likewise the only thing that inhibitions and bars
of repression can restrain is the physical manifestation of the sexual
impulse. The instinct itself cannot be annihilated. We know quite well
what happens to different types of people when the expression of the
sexual impulse is completely inhibited. Man or woman is equally affected
by this suppression, but woman in general has been the more suppressed.

§ 104

It cannot be overlooked that the constant pull exercised over every woman
by her erotic instincts, even though they be so repressed that she is
utterly unconscious of them, is more racking in the more refined and
cultivated type of woman than in the other. Lacking the satisfaction of
her erotic desires she unconsciously seeks gratification in numerous
activities toward which this blind erotism is the only efficient cause.
And as the real need is never met, these substitute activities never
completely satisfy.

§ 105

The practice of Karezza, or the husband’s reserving his own erotic
acme, has an interesting sidelight thrown upon it by the experiments of
Steinach in cutting the _vas deferens_. The effect of this is to stop the
external secretions of the interstitial gland. “The result is that the
seminal vesicle (either one of the two reservoirs for the semen) and the
interstitial gland are completely cut off from one another; and this in
turn gives rise to a multiplication of the interstitial cells, and to an
increase of the hormone produced by them.

“Professor Steinach has performed the operation on men on several
occasions. In some instances these men were fairly young but physically
weak; in others the subjects were senile men. The appearance of the
subjects became youngish, fresh; their bodily strength increased, the
tremor of their hand disappeared, memory and will power returned, and the
sexual power was restored.”[21]

It seems quite likely that Karezza may produce the same results. It has
too the advantage of being removable at will. That is, the husband, in
perfect control of his erotism, can thus reduce the external secretions
of his interstitial gland himself, without an operation, and reduce it to
as low a degree as he finds consonant with the buoyancy of his health,
and at the same time not only perfectly satisfy his wife but give her a
type and a degree of satisfaction wholly incommensurate with the effort
on his own part necessary to accomplish the result. If for any reason
whatever it seems at any time again desirable to produce the external
secretions he can do so. But it appears quite reasonable to suppose that
the arousal of the wife’s full erotism will under such circumstances
have the total favourable hygienic effect upon her, and his fears about
himself—namely, that by excessive external excretions of the interstitial
gland he may be weakening himself—groundless though they may well be,
will be quite removed.

§ 106

There is much discussion among physicians as to the harm that may be
done to the husband’s constitution by the practice of Karezza. But while
the physicians and scientists are weighing the possibilities of physical
harm to the constitution of the husband by this method of accomplishing
psychically what surgeons do with the knife, there can be no doubt of
the extraordinary psychic advantage of the procedure, an advantage which,
considering the well known but little used influence of the mind over the
body, may easily exceed any physical disadvantage.

The physical side of it is discussed by Dr. Robie, who thinks that
undesirable effects are produced by it, if it is continued long enough to
cause any of the disadvantages he mentions. The practice can be stopped
or interrupted at any time. The husband can control it perfectly so as
to have exactly as much external secretion as he finds he needs for his
greatest health.

And no matter how old he may become in years, up to the threescore
and ten, at any rate, he will have no need to give up for any fancied
advantage to himself his love episodes with his wife.

Karezza then while possibly unnecessary, or moderately undesirable for
young and vigorous men, may be a most salutary procedure for middle-aged
and older men, whereby they may preserve in themselves the functioning of
the interstitial gland, continuing its valuable internal secretions that
are stopped by complete abstinence.

Describing Karezza as the husband’s reserving his own erotic acme is not
psychologically accurate. As has been before stated the acme nevertheless
takes place, not physically through the sudden ejaculation of the
external secretions, but psychically through the indescribable emotional
exaltation on his part following the demonstration of his control, a
control which evokes an altogether unprecedented response from his wife.

He soon learns to value this response and his own power, which enables
him to evoke it, as the greatest accomplishment of his life, one compared
with which the egoistic-social emoluments and distinctions are as
nothing, a power of control greater than any other in the world in its
good results, a power of control which once exercised over one person
gives the possessor of the power the same or similar influence over

§ 107

If the husband’s concern is for his adult feeling of exaltation and
power, his greatest concern is the complete overpowering of his wife
in the realm solely of the erotic emotions. His study of her, and his
refusal to study his own feelings, is the best method of arousing her to
the pitch of excitement that glows almost to a point of luminosity. He
should learn by reading, and by consultation with the best erotologists,
how every effect on her is to be produced in the management of the
love episode, failing which he is almost certain to arouse a degree of
resentment in her, which, the more repressed, the more independently of
her own control it develops, so that it may break out even years later in
some act of anger or spite.

What he says, does and even thinks during the hours of the first love
episode, beginning with the first mutual anticipatory thought or look
and ending with the last reverberating memory image of what he has been
through with her, every act, word and thought of his own has an effect
upon her total physical and mental reactions, his mental expressions on
her physical reactions quite as much as his physical or her mental.

He can be absolutely confident that what she most desires, whether she
knows it or not, is to be completely dominated by him in the sphere of
erotic action, and the amazing thing is the number of husbands who do
not seek this domination of the erotic sphere of their wives’ life, but
who seek merely their own relaxation of tension which they could get
mechanically and autoerotically any time, if that was all there was to it.

She cannot desire to dominate him. It is a biological impossibility. She
may be so twisted and muddled in her thinking between social-egoistic
ends and erotic ends that she consciously wants to dictate to him in
everything; but if he properly master her here, she will not continue to
do so.

She cannot desire to dictate to him, except to gain egoistic ends, and
these are largely conscious ones; while the true erotic aims, in every
woman, are deep in the unconscious, and need to be liberated therefrom by
her husband, for the mutual development both of herself and of him.

§ 108

A correspondent of Ellis (Vol. III, p. 210) writes that, one cause,
serving to disguise a woman’s feelings to herself and make her seem
to herself colder than she really is, may be looked for in “the
masochistic[22] tendency of women, or their desire for subjection to
the man they love. I believe no point in the whole question is more
misunderstood than this. Nearly every man imagines that to secure a
woman’s love and respect he must give her her own way in small things and
compel her obedience in great ones. Every man who desires success with a
woman should exactly reverse that theory.”

The unsatisfactory nature of this communication comes from the ambiguity
as to small things and great things. What are small and what great? The
answer is that the small things are those concerned with egoistic-social
impulses, the great things are the erotic. From the truly erotic point
of view no egoistic-social impulses lead to great, valuable or important
actions. A man may defer to his wife’s judgment in all kinds of every-day
affairs, unless this deference is unmistakably due to an actual lack of
confidence on his part, because confidence of all kinds is based on love

And a man who not only defers to his wife’s judgment in egoistic-social
lines but in addition continues to “compass her with sweet observances,”
being always chivalrously polite and attentive to her, if he fail to
control her erotically, will completely dissatisfy her. His attentiveness
will actually annoy her. She unconsciously realizes that he is playing
the obedient little boy to her, and thus making out of her a mother and
not a wife.

The masochism referred to is an exaggeration. The natural desire of the
woman for erotic subjection is not masochism in the ordinarily accepted
sense, which means the pleasure experienced by some neurotics as a result
of pain inflicted upon them by others.

What Ellis’ correspondent means is that giving a woman her way in great
things and compelling her obedience in small things equally show that
love confidence without which any man’s actions will continuously gall
the wife’s unconscious. If he yields to her in great egoistic-social
issues, he shows the same confidence in the superiority of the erotic
instincts (the love confidence par excellence) that he shows in
compelling her obedience in small things.

§ 109

No egoistic-social experience, save when all the circumstances are such
as produce truly marital conditions, ever has the same transcendent value
as when the erotic within the married state is raised to the nth power.
Not does any of life’s rewards in the egoistic-social sphere compensate
for the loss of the erotic consummations of the binary life.

The married pair can be too sexual in the strictly physical sense,
they can leave undeveloped the more complicated organism of psychic
erotism—but they cannot be too erotic in the sense in which I have used
this term, for erotism, in the sense I use it, is psychically controlled
sex, controlled not as in the majority of cases, by repression and
inhibition, but by rational modes of expression.

§ 110

Modern science shows, and clearly, why it must be so, that man’s
emotional tensions are never to be relaxed in the presence of a woman
herself tense.

This applies in every other situation in life, as well as in the
distinctively erotic. A man’s emotional tensions are not to be relaxed on
a woman, but on a relaxed woman.

In every sphere of life the mother[23] is always a relaxed woman to her
son, particularly in his childhood, but is never a relaxed woman to her
husband, except at her consummation in the erotic episode.

If the husband is unwilling, or unprepared to accept these conditions
of marriage, he is marrying a woman to be a mother to him, instead of
a wife, and he is completely deluding both himself and her. If he is
unwilling or unprepared to accept these conditions of marriage, he needs
to wait till he is willing or he needs to be prepared.

This may sound, to some men, like giving entirely and not getting
anything in return. But they must realize that getting the response they
biologically need themselves, and consciously desire, if they be above
the animal level, is a process of constructive giving.

So much of their attention husbands must give in order to get what few
really get—the total response in every fibre of their wives’ life-love.
They cannot get anything by merely taking. Things merely taken turn to
dust in their hands. What they want to get must be lured forth from the
unconscious depths of their wives and must, to the wife, seem uncaused,
spontaneous, no matter how much the husband knows he has practised art.

§ 111

Much has been said not only in this book but in others about simultaneity
of the erotic acme in husband and wife. Gallichan in his _Psychology of
Marriage_ (p. 107), speaking of women, says: “It should be known that the
imperfect fulfillment of the marital act, unaccompanied by the normal,
healthy gratification decreed by Nature with infinite care, has a more or
less injurious effect upon the psychic-emotional being and may affect the
bodily functions.... The husband who does not experience this emotion is
either not the proper spouse for his partner, or some necessary element
of reciprocal love is wanting or amiss. If there is any human act that
should be perfectly mutual, it is this. When passion is shared alike,
Nature approves and blesses the conjunction.”

From that it may be inferred that the author quoted advocates
simultaneity of the erotic acme in husband and wife.

But there is a much better arrangement of the love episode than that.
The husband should see to it that in every episode the wife not only
arrives at the utmost climax of her erotic acme before he does but
that she recovers sufficiently from her ecstasy to enable her to give
thereafter conscious attention to his. Where, as in a passionate
honeymoon, both partners lose consciousness, so to speak, together,
in every love episode, neither has the supernal joy of witnessing the
ecstatic culmination of the other’s bliss. With autoerotic proclivities,
pardonable in the first weeks of marital life, they close their eyes
to each other, at the climax, and they sink into their own subjective
feelings, after which they come to the conclusion that each has loved the
other to the limit.

But this is not the case. They have loved their own sensations to the
limit but not each other’s. If it could be arranged that each should take
turns in “taking care” of the other so that now one and now the other
should first arrive at the climax, they would, it might appear to the
superficial thinkers, each gain the priceless boon of seeing his or her
own ecstasy reflected in the other’s.

§ 112

Nature has, on the contrary, so arranged it, as is obvious to all who
have had any true erotic experience, that a supposition that the husband
gets his acme first and the wife second, _in the same love episode_, is
an impossible one; for man is so constituted as generally to be unable to
continue a love episode after reaching his own erotic acme.

On the other hand woman is so constituted as to be able to continue any
love episode after she has herself passed the point of her own erotic

Therefore if the simultaneity of the ideal honeymoon, mentally autoerotic
as it is in its essential nature, is to give place to truly allerotic
marital behaviour, this transition can take place in only one way. It is
imperative that the allerotic action be that of the husband. The wife may
legitimately remain mentally autoerotic for the rest of her life.

It is a marital crime for the husband to remain mentally autoerotic. That
is what blasts most marriages.

Simultaneity, so unanimously approved by most erotologists, is an
introducing phenomenon, belonging only to the initial stages of marital
life. It should give place as soon as possible to the principle of

§ 113

All erotologists, on the general principle of altruism and mutuality,
sympathy and responsiveness, have advocated simultaneity of acme, without
realizing its mental autoerotism.

This book unqualifiedly recommends succession as infinitely superior to
simultaneity. Only by the arrangement of the love episode in such a way
that in every love episode the husband’s erotic acme follows, even after
the lapse of several minutes, the wife’s, can the spiritually deleterious
results of mentally autoerotic simultaneity be avoided. Only thus can the
most inexpressible joy be experienced by both husband and wife. Only thus
can they be said to be, erotically, perfectly mated.

For there is a peculiarly conscious human joy in feeling, in at least
comparative calmness, the ineffable bliss of just one other human being,
a joy of which no lover can ever, in wildest phantasy, dream, a joy that
mere simultaneity can never give.

Marital success demands succession.

§ 114

It may be said that it is characteristic of woman’s motherly and
unselfish nature that, in her utter surrender to her husband lover, she
is willing to make the sacrifice of giving him all and taking nothing
herself except the vicarious satisfaction of pleasing him. That has
indeed been the preachment, undoubtedly originating with selfish males,
for centuries of repression of erotism in women.

But its results are only conscious and superficial. Unconsciously, and
that means with nine-tenths of her available energy, she is unable to do
this thing. Nine-tenths of her very being, whether she is aware of it or
not, revolts at the monumental injustice of this arrangement.

Women of high moral and intellectual attainments can so coerce their
unconscious erotic instincts as to appear on the surface completely in
control of themselves. But what virile lover would wish them so, just
for the purpose of maintaining himself in a perpetual state of mental

Succession in this order more than doubles the joy of marital fusion, and
does so by stressing the psychical or hypersomatic factor of the episode.
It is an arrangement of the love drama that is peculiarly human and once
attained will never be abandoned.

It is a technique depending entirely on the husband’s absolute control
of the erotic situation. He will have almost every factor in the total
situation against him—his own instincts and those of his wife, which, on
the principle of biological testing carried on unconsciously by the woman
will help make this attainment difficult for him; but it is the true test
of virile marital love.

It will be replied by the average husband that he simply cannot
accomplish this feat, that it is against Nature, and that physicians
have told him nothing should be allowed to interfere with the speedy
attainment of his desires once he is on the path.

But a little reflection will show the incomparable superiority in every
way of this completely virile technique.

It may be also remembered by those who know anything about the intimate
history of the Oneida Community that a group of some 250 persons carried
on a technique successfully for thirty years with no detrimental results
to the males, a technique which differed from this Succession Plan only
in the fact that the men, but not the women, abstained from taking their
own erotic acme entirely except for the purpose of procreation. In this
community in which their principle of Male Continence was raised to a
religious principle there was a much greater health than the average for
the United States at the time (1849-1879) and the nervous disorders were
far less than the average.

What has been done can be done, yet what is advocated here is much easier
of attainment than what was done by the men of the Oneida Community.

§ 115

To a technique like that of the Succession Plan here suggested the
unconscious of the woman cannot fail to respond in the most favourable
manner. It is manifest that in every marriage that is truly happy the
husband must have approximated this technique if he has not finally
reached it. And by happy is meant successful from the erotic standpoint.

For it is conceivable that some lives even of happily married people may
be marred by certain egoistic-social reverses. There may be not as much
money as would make them more comfortable, and either one of the pair may
have bereavements, or they both may lose a child. But none of these will
touch closely the erotic life they live in common.

By happy marriage is meant one in which the partners never have a really
serious temptation to depart from the monogamic ideal. If thoroughly
fused, neither will have the slightest temptation, for each will fill
every erotic need of the other and will continue to do so.

If men were universally taught this Succession Plan, there would be no
dissatisfied wives; nor would any man be attracted away from his own life
partner. For beauty of face and grace of form, brightness of intellect
and brilliance of egoistic-social attainment are as nothing compared with
the sense of power and triumph shared alike by both partners where the
husband controls the erotism of the wife according to this method.

If men universally used this method there would be no possibility of
prostitution or any other form of infidelity, for no man, even following
the lead of his own unconscious, would find anything better than
perfection, and every man would find, because he had himself developed,
perfection in his wife.

Let, then, every man who thinks himself incapable of this degree of
control over his own erotic emotions admit to himself that he is as yet
undeveloped. He is still in the class of autoerotic infants.

Let him not infer, therefore, that because he is mentally autoerotic, he
has become so because of past physical, autoerotic habits. Those who,
uninstructed by erotologists who know the facts, have lost their love
confidence by brooding in secret over the fancied injury they have done
themselves in their youth by physical autoerotism—such men can gain a
mastery over themselves when married, and can become perfect examples of
erotic self-control.

§ 116

There is no question whatever of the ability of most men to attain the
degree of control necessary to practise Karezza, or the Succession Plan
advocated in this book.

The only question is the amount of clear thinking a man may be willing to
do concerning himself, to realize whether he should remain in the infant
class of autoerotics, or should represent to himself in vivid colours the
advantages of ascending into a truly allerotic adult level of control.
It is certain that if a man realizes the advantage, not only to himself
but to his wife and to everyone else in his own milieu, he will make the
outline of it so clear in his mind that all his unconscious energy will
assist him in the attainment of it as an objective reality.

This ideal is here called a representation, or an imagination on the
principle adopted by the autosuggestionists that “where the will and
the imagination come into conflict, the imagination always wins”—Coué’s
_Law of Reversed Effort_. Therefore the natural and obvious expression
was avoided above. It might have been said that when a man realizes the
advantages of the Succession Plan in the love episode, he will exert
every effort of which he is capable to attain it. But for this form of
statement was expressly substituted the form “he will make the outline of
it so clear in his own mind.”

For what autosuggestion has so convincingly shown is that the unconscious
imagination of the _opposite_ of what one says or thinks consciously is
the result that may possibly follow unless he is forewarned. If a man
say to himself a hundred times a day, “I will control myself,” he may
yet have in his unconscious a clear picture of lack of control, of hasty
abandon, and _it is that picture which forms the pattern of his acts as
they are carried out_.

§ 117

The question will at once be asked: first, how one can tell whether
one’s unconscious imagination, which controls one’s acts and one’s
physiological reactions, contains the picture of control or of lack of
control, and, second, how one can change the lineaments of this pattern.

The first question is answered by saying that if a man show lack of
erotic control it is proved that his unconscious imagination is thus, and
not otherwise, patterned.

The second question requires a longer consideration.

If the unconscious is to be controlled at all, it can be controlled by
conscious thinking only by means of substituting one pattern of action
for another.

It is obvious that the unconscious mental processes that govern
digestion, circulation, excretion, and the work of the glands of internal
secretion, cannot be pictured at all in conscious terms, i.e., in visual
or auditory or other images. No anatomist, histologist, or physiologist
has a definite enough mental picture of what actually does take place
in the blood stream upon the injection of the secretions of the various
endocrine glands. Therefore the autosuggestionists give the most generic
formula possible—simply: “Every day in every way I’m getting better and

But in the conduct of the love episode this extremely generic formula is
not sufficient. So we come to a more specific answer to our question as
to how the unconscious can be controlled. It is controlled by impressing
on it patterns of action from the conscious. There is no other way. The
extraordinary and freakish accomplishments of Hindu fakirs are made
possible by their picturing in their conscious minds the possibility
of their living successfully through their months of awkward postures.
If these feats were attempted by Occidentals the results would be
fevers, congestions, and all manner of ills suggested to them by their

§ 118

The Succession Plan of the love episode is, however, no freakish Hindu
proposition. But it is a perfectly possible pattern which involves the
application of psychical (hypersomatic) imagination to a course of action
that in animals is entirely physical and in humans takes on more and more
the psychical characteristics, as men gain more and more insight into
the influence of the hypersomatic over the hyposomatic portions of the
mind-body combination.

It is obviously impossible in this book, however, to be more specific
than to recommend that the man having become fully cognizant of the fact
that other men have done, and are today doing, what is not generally
done, should say to himself, “I will retard here, I will observe there,
I will not hurry or allow myself to be hurried but will take everything
as it comes and reap the full measure of satisfaction before advancing
a single step farther, knowing full well that whatever acceleration is
urged will only defeat its own purpose.”

Each man should fill out the details of this pattern which in a book
cannot be any more specific; but above all he should know that he can
acquire control over his own passions—indeed, that he must, in order to
be able to give them the fullest play later, and that their fullest play
is not an iota less than they should have for the health and happiness of
himself and his life partner.

§ 119

The fetishism of the single sense quality is an important consideration
here. Harvey O’Higgins in _The Secret Springs_ shows how even a part of
the person or a phase of the woman’s personality may take on an overplus
of emotional tension in the mind of the man, such as to make him think
he has found the paragon of all the virtues in the first woman he sees
having this peculiarity.

If his mother’s hands were especially beautiful, it is likely that
beauty of hands will play a big part in his unconscious selection of a
life partner, and that homely hands will repel him in a girl otherwise
eminently fitted to be his mate.

The deep emotions experienced by a little boy in seeing his mother in
evening dress in the ruddy glow of a red lampshade in the drawing-room
gave him a depth of response to that one vision that made him twenty
years later fall suddenly in love with a girl whom he saw illuminated by
the red hall light in her father’s house.

One is partly, but only partly, conscious of one’s fetishes. No man
except the most self-conscious student of his own mental reactions can
tell exactly why he likes or dislikes _anything_. He can give many
reasons; but the real _cause_ lies in the unconscious memory he has
forgotten—a memory of some pleasurable emotion of exceeding depth that
has occurred possibly a quarter of a century before.

But whatever may be the real _cause_ of the disproportionate emphasis on
certain features, mannerisms, or mental or physical habits of his wife,
the fact remains. It may well be questioned that any such overemphasis
on the _way_ she speaks or smiles, or on some peculiar catch in the
breath, _should_ make him lose control of himself, but it does. It is not
necessarily that he is set to go off in ecstasies at the occurrence of
any of these factors, as much as that through his own experience he sets
himself thus in a sort of lock combination.

§ 120

In reality this setting is something that should take place during and
not before marriage, if it must take place at all in a man. It were much
better if it took place not at all in the husband but in the wife.

This overvaluation of a smile, a dimple, a look, a timbre of the voice,
a perfume or froufrou, is used by men even before marriage as a sexual
stimulus when in reality none is needed.

The question of most vital importance is not so much, however, the shape
of eyebrow, the laughter rhythm, or other mannerism or characteristic of
a woman that causes a man to decide that he wants to marry her, for that
is in most cases in the unconscious, and therefore actually inaccessible
to him except through much more study than he is able or willing to give
it. The fetishes made by the unconscious, kept in the unconscious, and
causing selection on the man’s part are as nothing in importance to the
fetishes that he had innately or has acquired that give overvaluation for
him to certain phases of the love episode itself.

It is likely that in highly sensitive and intellectual men some
ordinarily unobserved or half-consciously noted phases of action or
being are major causes in the man’s premature arrival at the automatic
and uncontrollable part of his own action in the love episode. As
an illustration might be mentioned the undue prominence taken in an
episode by the bodily fragrance (natural, not the result of artificial
perfume) noticed and especially dilated upon verbally by one husband, who
thereupon completely lost control of himself at an early stage and was
unable to gain the allerotic result of his wife’s (prior) erotic acme.

§ 121

As is repeatedly stated in this book, there are other types of reaction
on the woman’s part that are unconscious attempts to test his control,
and continually used by her. Unconsciously she gains her deepest
satisfaction, one that permeates every thought and action of hers until
the next subsequent love episode, from her _inability_ to make her
husband lose control of himself.

Fundamentally this is the main cause of woman’s mystery to ordinary
man. She is continually springing surprises on him to throw him off
his rigid course of action. Continually she is deeply disappointed
if she succeeds in doing this. Could anything seem more perverse and
contradictory? Is anything really simpler and more straightforward than
man’s imperative necessity to pursue his own course quite uninfluenced by
her unconsciously motivated actions?

She will beseech him to hurry through the episode, not knowing herself,
sometimes, that it is the last thing she really wants or needs. An
allegory will serve as an illustration.

§ 122

They are ardent mountaineers. They are ascending Mt. Chocorua in New
Hampshire. She is afraid herself to go ahead over the rough mountain
trail and see the new views as they develop. She needs also his
assistance, his hand, to help her over rocks and fallen tree trunks and
up steep ascents. She says to him: “You go ahead and I’ll follow. Rush
up quickly and tell me what you see.” If he does so, he runs till he is
out of breath and then attempts from a cliff he has reached to shout to
her, to tell her how to get up to him, to describe the valley of the
Swift River of which he has just caught a glimpse. But he is panting so
hard he cannot articulate. Why should he have run ahead of her? Indeed he
should not have.

It would have been much wiser for him to reply to her invitation to
anticipate her: “Why, dearest, I see you are tired. Of course no woman
can keep pace with a strong healthy man up these slopes. Let’s sit down
and rest a bit.” He would then sit with her on a mossy stone or tree
trunk, or take her on his lap, and point out the beauties of the place
they were in, and absolutely refuse to leave her. He really does not wish
to see the panorama from the peak first, before she does. He is very
foolish to believe her when she says she wishes not to see it herself but
to hear about it. She may be, consciously, perfectly sincere and really
think she doesn’t care about going clear to the top with him _this_ time.

These two are ardent mountain climbers; but there are many couples where
the woman has not ever climbed to the top of a mountain who sends her
husband on alone; and, poor thing, he goes, not realizing how much better
the view is when two are looking at it.

§ 123

But any two ardent mountain climbers are practically certain to arrive
at the top, whether they get there together or the man goes ahead and
waits for his lady to come up herself—with the help of another man.
For the mountain of which I speak has the peculiarity that no woman can
climb alone to the top, as the path is extremely narrow, precipitous and
dangerous. If her husband leaves her as they approach the peak (which is
an enormous hill of rock capped by one huge boulder), she will be forced
to wait until he feels energetic enough to descend a couple of hundred
feet or so and help her up. Or if, enchanted himself by the glorious
view—miles and miles of rolling country, numerous lakes and the silver
ribbon of the Atlantic Ocean nearly eighty miles away—he is absorbed in
his own sensations of grandeur, and forgets his wife down there below him
as so many men do, it is just possible that another more unselfish and
less uncontrolled man will give her his hand and help her to the top,
slowly and courteously as behooves a man to do in spite of her effusive
protestations to him to leave her and see the sunrise himself from the
mountain top.

How will the husband of this woman feel, if, standing and facing the
east, he suddenly realizes that there appears his own wife over the edge
of the boulder, lifted by the strength of another man?

Had he known the true etiquette of mountain climbing among true married
lovers, he would have waited until both had covered together the entire
ascent up to the base of the boulder, six feet high and twenty in
diameter; and then, making a foot rest for her with his two hands, he
would have assisted her to get on this pinnacle herself first, before he

Then he would have watched her face for full five minutes in its
varying lights as she turned about in ecstasy at the sublime panorama,
the sunlight falling on her cheeks with their heightened colour from
her climb, the wind blowing a lock of hair across her temple. He would
have enjoyed for a while her outcry of delight as she saw and recognized
the miniature presentment of now a familiar village, now a lake, before
he jumped up beside her, clasped her in his arms and both turned about
from north to east to south to west together, and together drank in the
vitalizing air. He would be infinitely better able to tell her what to
look at, than he was able when he was on the boulder and she two hundred
feet below, to shout to her that he could see a hundred miles in every

And now he need not shout. He can whisper in her ears, between kisses on
every part of her head and neck, the joy of both of them, and can listen
to her murmuring endearments she never otherwise would have thought of

§ 124

This climax-capping boulder on the peak of Mt. Chocorua in New Hampshire
has on its southeast side the six-foot sheer perpendicular up which he
helped her first. On its northwest side it has a slope of some forty
degrees up which they might have scrambled hand in hand and reached the
utmost altitude simultaneously. But she will be much better pleased and
admire his restraint forever, if he not only keeps her ahead of him all
the long trail up the mountain but finally lifts her up ahead of him,
up the steep side at the southeast and (with her pardonable childish
satisfaction, which well becomes her but ill becomes him) lets her, on
this mountain-climbing experience, be his superior in this one little
thing for these brief five minutes. During this time she will recover a
bit from the sublimity of her position, will regain her breath, and will
be able to turn her attention from the wonders of the mountain view, so
that she too may have the pleasure of watching _his_ face and covering
it with kisses when he has made his final upspringing to the highest
physical altitude in the region. Ardent mountain climbers like this will
not be satisfied until they have symbolically, so to speak, climbed Mt.
Everest in the Himalayas. And these ascents, each with the other, will
preclude their taking any interest in the company of other mountain
climbers. No woman will want other company than that of her husband, no
man will be able to find a more attractive companion than his wife.

§ 125

For, on the mountain top, thoughts come to each—thoughts that can occur
in _no other_ situation. The difficulties encountered and overcome make
them inseparable soul mates. The refusal of her husband to leave her and
go up without her endears him more to her than presents of many jewels.
It shows her he has the only strength a woman can respect, the strength
to reserve his strength and to use it for and with her, a strength which
all unconsciously she must test at every step of the ascent. If this
strength is found wanting, she will be left forlorn, the most wretched of
living things, far more miserable than any female animal. If it is found
present, it will make her the happiest of mortals, happy beyond words in
her defeat in the contest of strength, yearning to make him the father of
her children.

To both of them come deep thoughts, those of the one reflected in the
multitudinous facets of the personality of the other, thoughts deep into
the past, thoughts looking far into the future, thoughts corresponding in
depth to the vastness of the prospects before them as they turn now east,
now south. A realization of the greatness of the world will come to them,
of the minute littleness of lonely atoms of humanity, a realization that
this aspect of nature alone is the one view of life that enables each
to know the other deeply and to be a complete unity instead of solitary
demi-humans each longing for an unseen other.

§ 126

To revert to the concept of fetishism one may use the mountain-climbing
symbolism of the love episode and say that almost anything on the ascent
may be used as, and become habitual as, a fetish capable of causing the
husband to leave his wife on the trail and hurry forward to the peak that
has a thousand ecstatic views.

She may use any of a number of suggestive arguments or mannerisms or
actions to convince him if she can that it is his duty to leave her, no
matter how harmful may be his abandoning her for his own erotic abandon.

She may tell him that he must get there so as not to miss the setting
(or rising) sun, or a rainbow, or a nuance of cloud forms, obscured from
where they are, halfway up the trail.

Of course, he too, unless he has been convinced of the childishness of
his act, may think there is some reason why he cannot or should not wait
for her, halfway, three-quarters, nine-tenths, perhaps, of the way up.
At the very boulder he may be persuaded to take this last jump alone,
and indeed it were a pity if, having brought her so far, he should leave
her, walled by the boulder from at least half the complete view. Some
women would petulantly begin the descent, forever unknowing what was the
husband’s experience in looking over the half of the circumference of
horizon impossible for the wife to see.

§ 127

The _one_ injunction necessary for the too enthusiastically climbing
husband is: There is plenty of time. Sit on this mossy bank. Help your
wife over every stone and stick in the path. Tell her of the grandeur of
the view. There is no hurry provided you both arrive at the top and she
take the final step before you. No aspect of sun, sky, clouds, forest or
lake but is absolutely different after every ascent and superlatively,
nay ecstatically, sublime. This is not the only chance you will have to
climb Chocorua. Mountain climbing, if not too speedy, is good for the
heart, and no expedition so fortifies one for work among the world of men
as this pedestrian ascent into the sky. Only you should go together and
be together all the time. The men who leave their wives on the piazzas
of the hotels in the valley are purely autoerotic boys. No man can tell
in words this mountain-climbing experience.

There may be women who think this mountain climbing immoral, coarse, too
rough for their fine constitution. These will have to be tenderly lifted
up each step of the way but when once at the top will be enthusiastic
converts, for they will have in the panorama an experience they will then
recognize as totally different and distinctively human.

    “It has always been common to discuss the psychology of women.
    The psychology of men has usually been passed over, whether
    because it is too simple or too complicated. But the marriage
    question today is much less the wife problem than the husband
    problem.”—HAVELOCK ELLIS: _Little Essays of Love and Virtue_,
    New York, 1922, p. 75.



§ 128

Evolution has produced in man a being in whom the erotic has now a
greater significance than the egoistic-social impulse. In the development
of plant and animal forms, science recognizes certain new productions
that differ from the norm of the species in which they appear, in such a
way that they were at first called freaks or mutations. But as they breed
true to their form, they are necessarily regarded not as freaks (_lusus
naturæ_), but as well established varieties.

The establishment of the erotic as a norm in humans has the further
implication that here we have a phenomenon existent nowhere else in life,
namely the non-procreative or social love episode.

Indeed it may be that love itself, as distinguished from sensual desire,
is a mutation on the psychical level, a form not recognized in any
description of natural phenomena until late in man’s evolution—the love
that comprises both physical and spiritual reaction for the man, and both
physical and spiritual counter-reaction from the woman. Without this
interaction man cannot be said truly to love.

For the man of today, who has succeeded in placing the erotic above the
egoistic-social impulse, has achieved a height that few, if any, have
attained before him, has gained a joy and fullness of living compared
with which the so-called happiness of successful marriage according to
former standards is but foredawn to noon-day.

The existence of this higher type of erotic control leading to the
establishment of the non-procreative or social love episode, brings into
clearest relief the distinction between control as repression and control
as expression.

Control as expression is analogous to driving a horse and getting
somewhere, control as repression is like unharnessing him and letting
him run away. Control of the erotic instinct by repressing is not like
shooting the horse, because repression never annihilates an impulse but
only removes it from conscious control.

Keeping in mind this difference between control by repression, which is
only apparent, not real, annihilation, only removal from consciousness
and not destruction of the impulse, we shall more easily note the
necessary connection between self-control and individuality, i.e.,

His individuality is just what he makes up his mind, and exercises
his utmost imagination, to _do_. His work is his own, only in so far
as he controls his actions in doing it, so that they are better than
the external demand. If he is an office boy and told to put stamps on
envelopes, he can do it and only it, or he can put them on so quickly or
so straight that the quickness or straightness is immediately seen as his
particular part of the performance.

He can control the actions of his work and his play; but, except
indirectly, he cannot control his digestion, respiration, blood pressure
or circulation. He has to eat more digestible food, or to take more
exercise, or to cultivate pressure-raising emotions, or those that lower
the blood pressure.

He has been taught to believe that his physical constitution and his
instincts are tendencies inherited from his ancestors and that he cannot
control them. If his instincts or inherited disposition make him lose his
temper so that he is not himself, he is supposed not to be responsible
for all he does.

But is he freed from responsibility because he is temporarily governed
by his instincts, or is he steered by his instincts only when and
because he throws away responsibility? Is it impulsive, instinctive
action that excuses him, or is it excuses that are wanted by him, which
makes him call his action, or the part of it he wants to be excused for,

Is not his only reason for calling some actions instinctive or impulsive
the fact that he does not want to be held responsible for them? What he
cannot control is not his fault. Therefore, what he does not want to
be blamed for he says is not under his control. Any thing, person or
mysterious power can be made the scapegoat for his misdeed. Much more
likely is he to blame other things, persons or powers for what he does
contrary to what he thinks people want him to do, than to account for
some praiseworthy action by saying it was the result of some power other
than himself.

If his marriage has turned out unhappily he consoles himself by saying
all marriage is a lottery. If it turns out well he pats himself on the
back and says, in actions though not in so many words: “See what a fine
match I have made!” But why should he take only praise and put blame on
some mysterious power—luck, or providence or what not?

§ 129

His sexual instinct is most likely to be assigned to some mysterious
power. But it is no more mysterious than his heartbeat and no more
miraculous than the growth of his beard or finger nail. In spite of the
fact that he has not given them much thought, his sex instincts are as
much a part of him as any tissue of his body.

The same principle applies to the praise or blame attached by others
to the acts which his sexual instincts prompt him to do. If he kiss
a strange girl in an environment where strange girls are kissed by
everyone, his act is not blamed. So it is his own act and not inspired
by some unholy power (unless indeed he has to explain to someone how he
happened to be in that environment, or he would have to blame that on his

If his amativeness shows itself in any place where that form of
self-expression is frowned upon, he will be mentally preparing excuses,
even if he does not have to use them, and he will simply say he was
forced by his irresistible impulse to do that very thing.

If his environment consisted at the time of one woman whose unconscious
passion was already directed toward him, she might call upon him for an
explanation which of course she wouldn’t really care about, but any sort
of explanation logical or not would suffice, because the demand was only

He takes the praise for what is conventionally praised in his actions. He
shifts the blame to anything not himself. Also he takes the praise, if
any is accorded, to anything that has cost him much effort. He leaves,
or dodges, the blame. So the two ideas according to which he reacts to
praise or blame are the idea of whether the actions praised or blamed are
his, the result of his conscious effort, and the idea of whether or not
the actions or their results are pleasant.

§ 130

On this principle he does always the next best thing to what he thinks is
expected of him provided he cannot or fancies he cannot do exactly what
people look to him to do.

This praise and blame, coming from other people and this looking to him,
to do this or that, are both examples of the control society is exerting
on him from childhood up. The clothes he wears, the books he reads, the
plays he sees, everything he does is at least partly dictated to him by
the people with whom and among whom he lives. If he knows people expect
him to wear a linen collar and silk tie he puts them on if he has them.
If he has only a collar he puts that on. If he has no linen collar he
possibly puts on a paper or celluloid one.

At any rate he gives them the next best thing in any and every line
coming up as far as possible to their demands.

In sexual instincts there is only one conventional demand; namely,
that, except in marriage, he repress them entirely. The next best
thing, the celluloid collar, in this case, is any and everything
society calls non-sexual. He may waste his time playing cards and his
money on the races or the stock market, and if he succeeds in getting
excitement enough out of them to prevent his thoughts turning to sex
topics he will have the comparative approval of society. If he leaves
women alone entirely he will be called a clean man. Anything short of
actual criminality serves as the next best thing to sex in the eyes of
conventional society.

Society to date makes only this negative demand on him. It as much as
admits that it has nothing to do with sex and still less with love. That
simply means that society is so blind it has not yet seen that it can get
anything out of sex, or of love either. Society has no eyes, no arms, no
lips. Why should society be interested in the employment of these parts
of men in amatory ways? They need not expect it to. They have no need to
look to it for such things.

Society on the other hand wants the individual’s time and energy devoted
entirely to professional, commercial and artistic ends, and grudges him
every moment he spends in doing and thinking along lines of pleasure
and advantage to himself. Society plans the rôle of the gods in the old
Platonic fable before mentioned (§ 46) but has taken the half-humans and
halved them again.

Society, unlike the fabled gods, however, wishes each of these to devote
full time to making, manufacturing, buying, selling, even fighting, which
always makes more work, but never to loving, which it considers a mere
waste of time. Children it wants, but they can be begotten without love;
and the less love the greater numbers.

Society therefore completely ignores the individual. It tells him to make
chairs and tables but never to make love.

§ 131

One has to reflect thus, so as to disentangle the motives that rule
one’s actions. The most individual and intimately personal motive is
love. One’s strongest individuality, if one can discount society and be
oneself, is seen in the ability to make love.

What a man most controls is most himself. Those actions that are
most controlled by forces _outside_ of himself are least his own. In
his thinking he has to learn inseparably to link individuality and

He has been taught from infancy to give up doing what he wanted to
do himself and do what other people want. All other people want him
to do almost the opposite of what he wants to do himself until, with
punishments, retaliations, and all sorts of rebuffs, their wants
have snowed under his instinctive desires with such an avalanche of
prohibitions that his actions are about ninety-nine per cent controlled
by the kind of selfishness that consists of selfishly trying to please
other people for a release from this snow pressure, which release is
called approbation or praise.

The impulses which come from the avalanche are the egoistic-social
motives, social because they come down upon him from everyone with whom
he comes in contact, egoistic because he is really protecting and
pleasing himself by following these motives.

But one can see for himself how much of the control of his ordinary
every-day actions is his, how much is the control of the avalanche.

Really then the only thing left to the individual is his love impulse.
Society is not interested in it, or does not see that it is. Society
would be a very different thing if it had eyes. It might have some
sympathy. The individual’s love impulse is the one bit of leaven in the
human mass today. It is the one thing he can call his own, the one thing
whose expression he can control. But society has taught by implication
that that is the one thing he cannot control except by annihilation.

So it appears society has shown quite Machiavellian abilities in
checkmating the erotic impulse which is the individual impulse par
excellence. Society is confronted with an apparently antisocial influence
and reacts to it on the low intellectual plane of trying to destroy it.

§ 132

But control is not annihilation nor is annihilation control in any sense
whatever. If you cannot train a horse by shooting him dead, you cannot
drive him by poisoning him. If you do you haven’t got him.

If you kill your love impulse you haven’t got it. You cannot kill it, but
you can knock it in the head so that it is unconscious. Ascetics have
done it. Society would as lief you did it yourself.

Your love impulse, not the Sunday school variety but the full red-blooded
variety of woman-loving (or man-loving) impulse is not only the most
individual thing about you because it is capable of the most complex
development in your case but it is the most valuable dynamo you have
generating endless power whose source is the sun itself.

Control of the love impulse therefore, and not annihilation of it, is the
individual’s most personal advantage.

§ 133

An essential difference obtains between the average man’s control and the
average woman’s chiefly in that the woman’s is a control by repression,
virtually, of course, no control at all; while the man’s control wherever
it exists is a control through expression.

It accords with the nature of masculinity and femininity that the control
of the woman’s erotism, if it be a control through expression, is the
control exercised over it by the man. Any control she may obtain over it
cannot but be the control by repression. In other words no woman has any
control over her own erotism except the ability to refuse to express it,
and even that she may lose if she meets the right man. And no control
is exercised over her erotism except by her true mate, if she is thus
developed by him.

The man’s control over his own erotism is a real control only after he
has succeeded in freeing his psyche from the mental autoerotism in which
he has been born, and has achieved a real allerotism. No consideration
need be given to the objection possibly raised here by some; namely,
that the double standard of sexual morality that obtains so widely may
have given the man a taste of allerotism, and may thus have given him
a control through expression. But it must be clearly understood that no
clandestine liaison of any sort whatever, except where there is a true
love of one woman, to the social recognition of which there is some
insuperable barrier, has any real value as an erotic control through

Finally in the differentiation between masculine and feminine erotic
control it may be said that the woman needs and can, by the nature of the
circumstances, have no control through expression herself. She needs no
release from her own natural autoerotism. Her love problem is _toto cælo_
different from man’s.

§ 134

The question—Are not all healthy men prone to relax their erotic tensions
more rapidly than women?—may be answered. Possibly they are, but they
need not be. If a man is sick he is more likely to feel like crying,
yet he does not always do so. If a man receives any great blow, he is
proportionately more likely to regress to the stage of infantility.

Healthy men, on the contrary, need not be short-winded in the love
episode any more than in playing a baseball game, painting a picture,
singing a song or writing a book. It may be that no art can be taught.
Even if this is true, we shall always attempt to teach arts of all kinds.
It may be that the art of love requires a certain amount of innate taste
in a man, for him to make any great progress.

History has shown a few great geniuses and a few great lovers. Few great
lovers figure in history because the average human adult married lover
has no penchant for advertising himself. The average childish married
man can, however, learn to take steps in the direction of adulthood in
married relations, even if he never becomes truly great as a lover.

This is indeed the most important point of all. Divorces in large numbers
and unhappy marriages in still larger numbers occur simply because the
husband will not have, or has not had the opportunity to learn the main
lessons of the married life, the greatest of which is that it is his
privilege to insure his wife’s attainment of the erotic acme, preferably
before his own, but at least simultaneously, and every time his own

They are not truly mated unless this plan of simultaneity or succession
is followed whole-heartedly. If it is not now followed, it must be begun
at once, and the only method is through the appropriate action of the

A baby takes its mother’s milk and gives nothing in return except smiles
and gurgles and sleep. A man taking his wife’s body and giving her no
adult emotional return for the emotional catharsis he gets himself,
except the infantile smile and sleep, is himself no less a baby.

And she will “mother” or “baby” him, first, and unconsciously hate him
later. Asking him if he has his rubbers, his umbrella, his overcoat and
the thousand and one things that more or less consciously irritate him,
show (but, in the average man, only to his unconscious) that what really
irritates him in these minor solicitudes is his manifestly infantile

§ 135

This complete lack, on the woman’s part, of any ability whatsoever to
secure erotic control over man leads her to try, unconsciously, of
course, to compensate, for her inability in this region, by securing
egoistic-social control over man. This she succeeds in doing every time
she meets a man who has not yet developed from a mental autoerotism, in
which he thinks that she has pleasures to bestow upon him and that he has
to get them from her, with or without payment of egoistic-social services.

It thus appears that woman not only has no exclusively erotic control,
which by the nature of things belongs entirely to man where he has
developed sufficiently to assume it, but also she invariably confuses the
two types of control, getting a vicarious satisfaction from different
forms of egoistic-social control, and missing, in a great number of
instances, the deep biological and organic satisfactions from the
exercise of control over her by the man.

A hazy notion that happiness is her prerogative at least in the first
months of her marriage leads many a woman to believe even to the extent
of a virtual hallucination that she _is_ happy, i.e., that she is
erotically controlled by her husband.

A love episode in which this control has not been secured by her husband,
or in which he may not even have tried to secure it leaves her in a state
of psychical conflict. She consciously knows she ought to be supremely
happy, unconsciously she feels blankly unhappy; and if, as so many women
are, she is without erotic insight, she fancies that her husband has
slighted her in some purely egoistic-social action.

Woman’s negative control in the erotic sphere results in the complete
depersonalization of her body.

§ 136

Unconsciously as well as consciously she _wishes_ to find all pleasure
in her honeymoon, and so strong is that wish that she is impelled to
believe that all the several experiences of it are pleasurable. They
_must_ be pleasurable or she must admit that at the start even, she is
_not_ happily married. This is the state of mind of those who enter the
married state with the most disingenuous sincerity. Those who marry with
any initial conflict, such as feelings of guilt for any previous illicit
sexual adventures, are more unfortunate.

Those whose wishes for happiness are so strong as to interpose a
rose-coloured glass between their eyes and their actual experiences are
deceiving only their conscious selves. One cannot deceive the unconscious.

Unconsciously they are disappointed in the lack of rapport between their
own emotional erotic situation and their husbands’. They are in the
position of a starving man looking through a plate-glass window, at a
restaurant full of merry feasters.

According to her bringing up she may repress all or a part, or none,
of her natural resentment at this situation; and the resentment is
going eventually to make her more exacting of her husband, if she is to
surrender to him even her impersonal body. For impersonal her body does
become even to her. She regards it as belonging by law to him and she
will not virtually inhabit it when he is with it. At his approach she
flees from it every time. And as this flight is an unconscious, though
a real flight, we cannot blame her if her husband will not, or cannot,
take enough care of it and its reactions to enable her to assimilate the
necessary food of love.

She will think: “He says he loves me, but I know only that he likes my
body. I begin to hate it because it does not give me the satisfaction
it does him. I can’t understand it a bit. It’s a strange world. But I
suppose it’s got to be as it is. I can’t do anything about it.”

And she cannot, if he will not or cannot. Is there any more powerful
deterrent than despair to prevent a young wife from being able to produce
in herself a relaxation of erotic tensions? Her usual course, when
she begins to despair thus is to deny to herself that she has any sex
feeling at all. Her husband then agrees with her and calls her frigid.
This crystallization of her feelings not merely retards but annihilates
whatever abilities she has to express her love in an erotic way. She
fortifies herself with the compensating thought that sex is, as she has
always heard, sinful, filthy, nauseating. Her face begins to become
hardened, to develop a wrinkle or two and she is in a fair way to become
an anti-something.

She begins to realize that he has not done this or that, such as
remembering to post a letter or make a purchase or keep an appointment
with her; or he has contradicted or opposed her in some judgment
concerning practical every-day occurrence. He has not done what he should
have done, to be sure; but not only does she not know what that thing is
but she has no means of knowing what it is. She therefore is forced to
express her dissatisfaction with him in terms of a sphere of impulse with
which she is acquainted; namely, the egoistic-social. She cannot talk to
him in a language of which she knows not a single word.

The relations between a new bride and her husband in their first love
episode are those of an examination or test. The bride tests the groom,
of course, in the majority of cases unconsciously. There is nothing else
for her to do. There is no test she has to meet. By the circumstances of
the case she is not required to do anything for the conscious performance
of which she is to be judged or tested by anyone. She has not to do but
merely to be, to exist—as if, asleep, to be awakened.

The unconscious situation is quite the reverse. The husband is the one
who is tested. If he fails in any detail of this test there remains in
the story of his actions a lacuna which she has no means of filling, but
which forms the nucleus of a doubt in her unconscious mind and the centre
toward which all subsequent failures on his part tend to congregate in
such numbers that she may become later completely skeptical. She will say
she knows he loves her. To be sure, he does a thousand little things for
her all of egoistic-social, none of truly erotic value.

If he even once takes these virtually friendly, unconscious examinings of
hers as real evidence of hostility or lack of interest, he is failing her
where she feels it most keenly, and is beginning to lose his control of
her erotically. If he continues to be switched off the main track by her
well-nigh inquisitorial attitude he as much as admits to her that he is
not longer able to come up to her standards—a humiliating admission for
any man to make to any woman.

Kittens are born blind. Women are born love-blind. No woman is other
than anesthetic, which means “not perceiving” until she has perceived
something. And there is nothing for her to perceive except what her
husband does.

Woman’s negative control, coming as it does from her anesthesia which
is innate in her and is removed only by the proper kind of marriage,
makes her “uncertain, coy and hard to please.” If not met and handled
erotically by a man who has abandoned autoerotism, it develops in her
a degree of opposition, antagonism, obstinacy and resistance that is
completely misunderstood by a man without erotic insight.

§ 137

Women confuse the control on the egoistic level with that on the erotic
level, because the latter prompts them to keep testing their men in
the unconscious attempt to assure themselves of their own security.
This testing is done on both levels. When it is done on the upper or
superficial level of egoistic-social acts it takes the form of all
varieties of fantastic and capricious behaviour. The most “temperamental”
woman is using her moods only to try the steadfastness of the man
concerned, although she is quite unaware of the unconscious motive.
She either cannot explain her actions or she assigns reasons that are
pure rationalizations. When the testing is done on the erotic level it
sometimes assumes the form of coldness or anesthesia.

Women will later come to see that their use of egoistic-social tests is
only an indirect manner (and never a reliable one) of assuring their
erotic security, but they will attain this insight only after they have
made the distinction between the two groups of motives and have given to
the erotic its true superior value.

If the young bride has had the good fortune to be enlightened on sexual
matters, and thus to be prepared for a descent upon her of an expression
of force which otherwise is easily too great a shock, she may even
welcome its impetuosity.

If on the other hand, as is almost universally the case, she is ignorant
of sex, her reaction to an uncontrolled husband will be one of utter
despair. The majority of educated women today have been brought up with
all the inhibitions which crass ignorance of sexual psychology produces.
As a precautionary measure many of them were instructed by their mothers
that boys and men are uncontrolled brutes and should not be allowed to
touch girls, who are destined to become married mothers.

Therefore the majority of women enter the married state with faces at
least slightly averted from sex, just as some religious sects train their
believers to wash in the dark and never under any circumstances to look
at their bodies undraped, much less any other persons’.

So the chance is that the husband will have as his first duty to
eradicate this sex inhibition, for which his wife is in no way to blame,
for as a child she started in the right direction, and was misdirected by
her parents, guardians or teachers.

If a man is constitutionally unable, or has trained himself to be
unable, to control his own emotional catharsis, and must see to his own
satisfaction, before (or even instead of) his wife’s, the prognosis of
happiness, if he gets a woman with the sex inhibition, is negative.

§ 138

That the soul as well as the body of the newly married, in their first
love episode, should be inexplicable and unreservedly “blended with the
only other soul and body in all the world for him” certainly requires
a mental ante-nuptial preparation that has rarely been attained in the
past. It implies the belief on the man’s part that the woman should have
_from the first_ exactly the same true physical and psychical ecstasy
that he expects himself. How many men think that?

It must be admitted, however, as has been indicated above, that the
woman’s erotic development progresses, and that in some cases it takes
months and even years for it to reach its full expansion. In the meantime
the hasty, anesthetic husband has lost his grip and, unconsciously
unwilling to grow up with his wife, remains at his selfish, animal level.

Incidentally, too, he holds his wife there; for it must be remembered
that the wife’s erotic development, on which depends not merely her
contentment, but the stark possibility of her becoming more than a
gynecoid female, is absolutely nil, if it be not developed by her
husband. This is unequivocally a one-way process. All the latent love and
beauty of being and action on the woman’s part are dependent solely on
the ability of her husband to unfold her.

§ 139

It may be argued that the woman’s erotic acme is conditioned by the
prior or simultaneous emergence of the man’s. But this argument is the
working out of a defence mechanism coming from the unconscious of the
man. He makes this statement not because it is true but because, from an
autoerotic phantasy, he wishes it were true.

The statement, too, may be sincerely made by the woman, but, if it is,
it is because she has heard him make it or correctly inferred from his
unconscious actions its tacit existence in his mind. It is shown in
another place that there is always in the man’s unconscious a phantasy
that his part in the love episode will produce his wife’s erotic acme at
once and without effort on his part. This phantasy amounts in some cases
to an hallucination.

§ 140

It was said above that you cannot control what you cannot see or touch or
otherwise perceive. To what you cannot see, you are blind; to what you
cannot hear, you are deaf; to what you cannot smell you are—but there is
no English word for that, so we have had to take a Greek word—_anosmic_.
Similarly if you could not taste, touch, feel, you would be insensible.
There are many more forms of insensibility than merely being knocked
out in a fight. The insensibility to the penultimate one of the various
phases of the love episode has been called in a woman anesthesia. In the
love episode of the hasty husband there are innumerable reactions of
his wife to which he is insensible, anesthetic; but which would be a
revelation of supreme joy to him if he could but see them; therefore it
is better that the love episodes should take place in the light rather
than in the dark.

Yet not alone the visually perceptible reactions. For there are reactions
of every variety. If you have ever used a blow pipe on a piece of copper,
and observed the iridescence which soon comes, you will realize the same
beauties in every sense preceding the complete annealing of your wife
by the heat of passion you engender in her. If you have ever watched
the iridescence of a spraying fountain in the sun, you will see the
same effect in the emotions of your wife when the relaxation of tension
has broken up her being into fine particles that float slowly down and
refract the light rays of your love. And the beauty and calm of the
rainbow after a summer storm is nothing to that of the mental state of a
woman after the downpour of her erotic passion.

All these are features to which the anesthetic man is insensible.
Although the similes used are visual, there is not a sense quality that
cannot be thrilled by the perception of the woman’s reactions. And
although the similes rather hint at the finale than at the preliminaries
they all refer to the effect produced on the woman by the activities of
the man. The kinesthetic sense of the husband must be developed. He is
much wiser if he will give these sensations some appreciative study.
It will help to give him control by taking his mind off the burden of
tension he has to carry himself, and enable him to acquire over his wife
that domination in the exclusively erotic sphere which is essential not
only to his wife’s happiness but to his own.

§ 141

Anesthesia is love-blindness. Love is pictured blind because he does not
see _defects_. The worst blindness of love is its not seeing beauties.
Most husbands’ love is blind. This is the anesthesia meant. When one is
given surgically an anesthetic it is to make one insensible to pain. Love
anesthesia is the insensibility to the love emotions which are stirred in
every man by every woman.

Can a man be aware of these appeals, made by every woman, and choose
to remain true to the woman he has married? What good would be done to
him if the anesthetic to which, by virtue of conventional repression,
we are all subject, should be suddenly removed? Would not such a man be
irresistibly impelled to make love to any and every woman he saw? Where
then would monogamy be? But if monogamy depended on anesthetics of this
type it would be on a very insecure basis. It would not endure a week.

Yet most men are love-blind, are anesthetic to woman’s deepest erotic
appeal. Furthermore the securest protection for monogamy is the removal
of that anesthesia.

§ 142

This doctrine of the supremity of masculine erotic control will be
objected to, and by the best of women. They will say that they get their
joy in perfect marriage from the knowledge that their husbands are made
happy. They will also say that it is only fair play if there is a give
and take on both sides, and that the denial of woman’s control relegates
them to an inferior position.

They misunderstand, however, the biological foundations of the marital
state if they consider woman’s position of receiver and not giver as
in any way implying inferiority. They confuse erotic control, which is
demonstrably a one-way control, with egoistic-social control, which is
quite as normally exercised by women as by men, by women over men, as by
men over women.

They fail to see also that the secure establishment of the one-way
masculine erotic control will so satisfy men that no dispute can arise as
to the rights of women in the egoistic-social sphere. They fail to see
also that the solid foundation of truly erotic control over them by their
husbands will release for egoistic-social activities an enormous fund
of energy which is now irrationally locked up in the erotic sphere. In
other words if they are fortunate enough to be married to a man who is in
perfect control erotically they will not need to worry about his approval
of whatever they may find interesting to do in egoistic-social spheres of

§ 143

The excellent women who may on theoretical grounds, object to their
husbands’ supreme erotic control, are merely echoing the sentiments
of traditional convention, which are man-made sentiments, made by men
centuries ago, dictating what was right and proper for women to do
centuries ago.

Today there is nothing, even in the ordinary every-day service a man
receives from his wife that he would not rather have servants do for
him—cooking, house-tending, clothes-mending or the supervision of these.
If he were rich enough he would.

But the personality reaction in the most intimate psychical as well as
physical relations of married life he can secure from no other than a
true wife, and in no other sphere than the exclusively erotic and in no
other way than as she, like the vibrating string of a musical instrument,
responds to his technique.

§ 144

The main thesis of this book is that in the instincts and emotions of
love the self-control of the husband and, through this, his control of
the exclusively erotic emotions of his wife are essential to a successful

A continuous interplay of control on the egoistic-social level between
husband and wife tends to exist in all marriages. There is an impulse in
women to control the actions of men at this level quite as much as men
attempt to control women. But the control of the egoistic-social impulses
of each by the other has nothing to do with real marriage, and the
impulses and emotions peculiar to it, which are erotic only and, at that,
subject to a one-way control.

In the sphere of the erotic emotions man should be supreme. Neither
husband nor wife is ever really happy unless he has this control, and is
indifferent to the other control on the egoistic-social level.

The facts that control is neither annihilation nor repression, that
control is of the very essence of personality and individuality, that
biologically man’s control of woman is the only control needed in the
erotic sphere, and that woman, not being able to control there (and
feeling, if she be not controlled, a need which she unconsciously
interprets as a need to control others)—all these are facts that are of
slight importance, however striking they may be, compared with the fact
that man, on the average, is brought up without knowledge of the erotic
control he needs to assume in order to make both himself and his wife

The unsatisfied woman experiences the fact that she has bestowed upon her
mate unutterable joy and bliss. A satisfied woman’s recognition of this
fact, however, cannot occur at the same time that her own erotic acme
takes place, for at that particular time she is as oblivious to anything
save her own sensations as if she were the only being existing in the
universe, and her sensations are as indefinite and infinite as though she
were taking chloroform. She must, in all the processes leading up to her
temporary psychic dissolution, realize that these processes are being
accomplished for her by the being and doing of her husband-lover. She may
not ever know exactly what he does do, but she is translated—and by her

§ 145

The man of the twentieth-century type gets his supreme gratification, not
from anything that is done to him, nor yet from any sensations which his
activities produce in him, which indeed he could get blindfolded from
any living woman of similar proportions and somatic reaction, but from
the knowledge his own visual and tactual sense gives him of the effect
of his acts on his partner, the physical and psychical effect which his
being and doing have not on himself directly (which is the ordinary
autoerotic procedure) but indirectly on him through the body and soul of
his mate.

The analogous statement cannot be made about the woman. To be sure, she
both is loved and loves, both is desired and desires, but she can herself
do nothing that gives the man other than autoerotic pleasure. His joy,
on the contrary, comes not from what she does to gratify him directly.
His appreciation and response to any artful action on her part is a
feminine reaction, and while excusable in egoistic spheres of action is
inexcusable in the erotic.

For he neither wants her, nor does she want, essentially and
biologically, to be the active, creative factor in the love episode, just
because this factor is the exclusively masculine factor. Her unconscious
reaction to this reversal of masculinity and femininity may amuse her
for a while, as a variation; but it cannot continue. Conscious purposive
action on her part gives neither her nor him a lasting gratification,
as it is a step in the direction of psychic autoerotism on his part to
receive such satisfactions.

Her reactions on the contrary should have such a degree of spontaneity
and unreflective artlessness as to give him assurance of their being true
unmeditated responses as sure and inevitable as the chemical action in
an opening flower, but as purely hypersomatic (spiritual) as they are

Otherwise, he will never be able to know her as she is. He will know
her as the traditional suggestion of her environment has taught her to
be. This pervasive influence of environment, which is well enough in
egoistic-social impulses, is wholly out of place in the erotic sphere.

The truly modern husband will wish more than any other thing to know his
wife as he himself alone can know her, and will more and more consciously
resent, as the century grows older, any egoistic-social conventionality
slipping into the purely erotic.

In order for him to gain his greatest joy from marriage with this
particular woman, she will have to be made _sui generis_. The only means
toward this end is her utterly unpremeditated, spontaneous response,
unclouded by the suggestions of tradition as to how she ought to respond.

A woman thus rendered _sui generis_ by her husband’s erotic control will
more than fulfil any requirements or specifications of a pattern of
romantic love. Such a woman, thus known by a fully percipient husband,
takes on for him a value, transcending far those of the ordinary
so-called loves of the every-day, mildly contented variety, and becomes
for him alone, incandescent with vitality.

The considerations offered in the preceding paragraphs point to the
conclusion that the average man’s lack of erotic control is due first of
all to his mental autoerotism.

Man’s lack of erotic control is due also partly to a certain anesthesia
on his part, taking the word in its etymological sense of a failure to

He fails to perceive that his function in married life is giving and not
receiving. He also fails to perceive the difference between woman’s
spontaneous reactions and those suggested to her by her environment. He
fails to perceive that woman’s resistance has a deep biological cause and
that she is unconsciously forced to test him hourly. He fails to perceive
that she inevitably confuses erotic and egoistic-social instincts.

§ 146

The man to whom the love episode is only an animal sex act, a swift and
dizzy whirl, is one who, so to speak does not in advance plot out the
trajectory of this flight, does not let the component factors enter his
consciousness for long enough to observe them and devote some conscious
love to them. These innate associations are there in his unconscious;
but his training has repressed them. Such a man to whom the love episode
is like a swift gulping of strong liquor has no time to reflect upon its
various bouquets and glints in natural and artificial light.

The ideal enactment of the love episode, if permitted to enter
consciousness in the proper manner, enables one to prolong it, because
this admittance of new factors into consciousness, that were all along in
the unconscious, gives a reason for stopping and taking account of the
phases of it as they occur. The most important phases are those where the
husband takes note of the effects of his being and doing upon his wife.
The hasty husband is the one who has no regard for any other’s feelings
save his own. If his own were the only ones that existed, he would of
course have no reason to retard his own erotic acme. With an insensate
spouse he might go through the love episode as often and as rapidly as he

It must be kept in mind always that there is a definite biological cause
for the slow progress of woman through the phases of the love episode—the
inescapable necessity that she shall assure herself continuously and
beyond the slightest doubt of the erotic strength of her partner.

It is probable that the women who are not slow in this progress are in a
sense degenerate, if that term have any real meaning. They would be the
ones who would not, unconsciously, of course, express that biological
need for impregnation by the strongest male, which is expressed by the
average woman in her slowness. They would tend to reproduce what might
be called a lower order of humans in which the erotic in itself, the
hypersomatically or spiritually erotic plays a much smaller part, an
order of humans that were nearer the animals than those humans who have
amplified the erotic factor.

The hasty husband, as will later be shown (§ 158), unconsciously reasons
that his own speed demonstrates his quick and masterful control over his
wife’s erotic emotions. This unconscious fallacy is made worse if the
wife has followed the doctor’s advice to simulate an erotic acme in order
to preserve the marital peace.

If the effect on her of his mere presence were so overwhelming, and if,
as soon as he embraced her, she soared into the empyrean of ecstatic
bliss, his mere embrace might have the effect at once of producing, in
her, her own erotic acme. This would, however, imply either that she
was herself weak, judged by the standard just given, or that she had
assumed, without testing, his superior strength in the erotic sphere.

This assumption is an exceedingly rare one, depending on an inference
from mere physical muscular strength, or from the fact of a great
egoistic-social reputation. In other words such a woman might think that
because her husband was or is an athlete his physical strength implies
erotic strength, or that because he was a famous man he would be a great

§ 147

The husband’s lack of erotic control based on his own lack of perception
renders him too precipitant in the love episode.

It is believed, on the authority of physicians and such others as have
studied the subject, that the love episode, in about seventy per cent of
civilized marriages, is but a one-sided affair from the first. This is
due almost exclusively to the impetuosity of the husband during the first
weeks of marriage. Sometimes under the inspiration of the purity of his
bride-to-be, or from an increased cautiousness against the chances of
contracting venereal disease, he abstains from resorting to prostitutes.

If this practice of his has come from a belief on his part that he
was obliged, as he believes all men are, to relax his sexual tension
periodically, he will generally believe that his temporary pre-marital
continence is piling up tension in him, and he will approach his bride
for the first time with an idea probably that his tension is greater
than it has ever been in his life.

A very important distinction must here be kept in mind; namely, that
between the perfect erotic love episode, free from conflict, and
involving both hyper- and hyposomatic levels of the personality, and the
imperfect, illicit sex act. It has been pointed out[24] that the physical
sex act does not relax a true love tension, that the instinct itself may
not be satisfied even with numerous hyposomatic sex activities.

If, therefore, the young husband be of the type that believes that an
illicit sex act invariably produces the desired relaxation of erotic
tension, he will be the more likely to give way to an impulse that has
a large proportion of the purely hyposomatic (or physical) factor in
it. This abandon on his part will exclude all possibility of mutuality.
He will thus lose at the start the possibility of that control which he
might have gained over his wife’s erotic reactions, had he been able to
control his own. And he would have been able to control his own but for
the erroneous belief that the tensions he relaxed clandestinely with the
_demimondaine_ were the main tensions, which undoubtedly they are not.

It is obvious that the annihilation of his bride’s natural responsive
actions that results from his faulty procedure is fatal to married

§ 148

This hastiness marks the love episode on the part of the average man.
What he wants is a reaction that is to take place in himself, for which
his bride is merely the external complementary mechanism. The purely
mechanical side of this he could either purchase from a courtesan or
seize against her will from an innocent “honest” girl, but he fears
venereal disease in the former and trouble of accidental paternity or
discovery or both in the case of the latter. Eventually he regards both
types of women with equal impersonality. Either is merely food for his
sexual (not erotic in the highest sense) hunger, and it is his own sex
hunger that he is bent on appeasing, with absolutely no idea of the
difference in erotic value between the two types of women, in the way he
acts. There is none, for neither is more appropriate to his spiritual
need than hay would be for his stomach.

The man who desires a wife either for the purely sexual or for the
purely domestic motive has no conception of marriage whatever. If he is
influenced either consciously, or unconsciously by such a motive he might
as far as his own sole advantage is concerned, confine himself to sexual
affairs with prostitutes. He is unaware of the new light that has been
thrown on love by the recently acquired knowledge of the work of the
ductless glands. He has never heard of them, of course, and could not be
expected to know how intimately they are connected with each other and
with his entire mental and physical welfare.

What he later finds out, and that with no help whatever from science,
but from tough experience, is that the two things that he craves—namely,
sexual satisfaction and all the good things of domestic life—are in some
way inevitably and more and more sundered. His wife either is and remains
“cold” or acquires suddenly or gradually a coolness which increases to
actual pseudo-frigidity. He notices a change in her. He knows he has not
himself changed.

The change should have been in him and then there would have been in
her a change which would have gratified him instead of disappointing
him. But, never having been taught how to behave in the most intimate
relations of marriage, he is feeling the results of his ignorance just
as would a landlubber feel eventually the resulting shipwreck if he
undertook, or were forced against his will, to pilot a big ship. The
husband should be the matrimonial pilot, but he has received no course of
instruction in that form of navigation.

§ 149

Haste in the husband comes primarily from fear. Fear makes the thief
hurry through his thieving. The pickpocket must be so deft and swift
that the victim’s consciousness is not aroused to the theft. But a true
husband-lover is not, in the love episode, stealing anything from his
wife, no matter how much his actions may resemble those of a thief. His
aim should be not to avoid arousing her consciousness, but to awaken it
to the gift he is offering her.

Fear makes anyone telescope, curtail, syncopate and abbreviate any
act, selecting out of all the portions of the act some element of it,
considered perhaps the cream of it, and cutting out all the rest of it.
Fear alone—the fear felt by the thief—is unconscious motive enough for
haste on the husband’s part. If he did not fear her erotic acme, or her
reactions that occur prior to it, he would not repress them, or allow her
to repress them. Why should he fear to give his wife the same erotic acme
in every love episode that he uniformly gives himself?

He fears—unconsciously, to be sure, for the most part—that, if his wife
develops so strong an erotic reaction, she may have an irresistible
craving to satisfy herself when he is not present, thus giving herself to

Haste in the husband is therefore due to a fear that he may lose his
wife’s passion, if it be aroused. He does not realize that the modern
educated civilized woman is unable to give herself to any but the one man
who has first aroused her deepest passion; and that the more educated and
cultivated she is, the more surely she is centred upon the one man about
whose being the entire erotic sphere rotates as on an axis.

Man’s fear that his wife may be or become “oversexed” is at least a
part of the cause for his haste in the love episode. Unconsciously, of
course, he does not want her to have the same ecstatic pleasure as he
has himself. Not only because, in his squinting regard, this puts her
in the prostitute class, but also because he fears her becoming too
passionate for one man and therefore requiring two or more. This is based
on an undercurrent of opinion among men that a woman’s sexuality is
fundamentally stronger than a man’s; and that her comparative leisure
in view of his own, will tend to foster in her the desire for sexual

Added to this is the other erroneous supposition, common among ignorant
men, that excessive indulgence in the pleasures of the love episode has
a weakening effect on the man. Viewed as excretions, as the seminal
products have been until today, it would seem quite illogical to fear
an evacuation of these at least once a day. But although they have been
regarded as excreta, there has always been an unconscious belief in men
that their retention somehow strengthened the brain. Still a way has been
pointed out (see § 100) for the love episodes to be continued without
this fear.

A consideration favouring the erroneous belief that the seminal products
should not be ejaculated too freely is the phenomenon of a certain
lassitude and inactivity following the love (?) episode as it has been
hastily put through by many men. On the contrary the perfectly balanced
love episode cannot have this unpleasant result. It ensues only when the
episode has been imperfect either through too great haste or through the
lack of suitable response on the wife’s part. If both share equally,
i.e., if the husband reserves his own acme, the result is perfect. It
cannot be perfect in any other way than that perfectly shared in flawless
mutuality. The evocation of the suitable response on the wife’s part
lies wholly in the husband’s self-control. Whether the effect is caused
principally by psychical or by physical causes, it is he that in all
cases is responsible. Without his proper conducting of the love episode,
she is impotent and anesthetic. She cannot feel what he does not do.
She cannot see what he does not show her. Who can blame her if her
unconscious passion, over which she has never had, has not now and never
will have any control, is magnetized by the really superior conduct of
another man?

In brief, divorce is in the power of the husband to render imperative or
impossible. The wife has essentially nothing to say in the matter except
that she has found in her husband a rover among women, a beast that
treats her brutally or an ignoramus who is not competent to be either a
good husband or a good father.

§ 150

Some men are always delighting the conscious life of women by the
intensity and frequency and rapidity of their emotional relaxations.
Such men seem so generous in their spending of the small change of
emotion. But they are always maddening the unconscious of their women,
whether these women be wives or mistresses, for they are repeatedly,
almost universally, taking in the woman’s presence, and through the
instrumentality of her presence, what she cannot herself get, and what
she has biologically an expectancy, if not a right, to have. Such men
are practically annihilating the chances of their own and their wives’

The woman that is governed by the egoistic-social instinct unwittingly
plans for the man’s hasty emotional relaxation, the while completely
holding her own emotional reactions in check, under perfect repressive
control. In the average civilized woman brought up under sex inhibitions
this control by annihilation is the only control she has. The ability
thus to annihilate the finest possibilities of erotic reaction in herself
is the result of the only training many women get. It is the fine art
of the prostitute, but not all of hers, however. The rest of it is
to simulate a loss of control on her own part in order to effect the
aggrandizement and unconscious sense of superiority on the part of her

This conscious retaining of erotic control is, to be sure, based on
the biological necessity of man testing. The best of women cannot of
themselves let go their own erotic control. It has to be taken from them
by men who are emotionally their superiors in strength.

In so far as it (woman’s tendency to lie) is “almost physiological”[25]
and based on radical feminine characteristics, such as modesty,
affectability and sympathy, which have an organic basis in the feminine
constitution, and can therefore never altogether be changed, feminine
dissimulation seems scarcely likely to disappear.

Woman’s tendency to dissemble is dependent on her unconscious reaction of
testing the male. But she must test her male for the deeply biological
purpose of finding out whether he is strong enough for her. He needs to
be, for her purposes, only stronger than she is, to be strong enough;
although, when this motive is sometimes transferred to consciousness,
she may become a fortune hunter or vampire, and throw away any man for
the next egoistic-socially stronger she finds available. This does not
of course refer to physical muscular strength but to psycho-sexual
strength. If physical strength were enough there would be almost no
divorces and no marital unhappiness.

§ 151

Her testing her male, therefore, whether it is in pre-marital
egoistic-social relations or after marriage erotically, is a resort to
the negativism (which is indeed a characteristic of infantility). This
negativism is seen in the critical attitude which is so intense in some
of the later incidents in married life. And in the first love episode any
coolness on the bride’s part is a tacit resistance which seems to say:
“I am not yet fully mastered. Any opposition I present to you is no more
than what as a man you should be able to overcome. You may be my superior
in physical strength but there are numerous kinds of strength. I did not
obviously marry you for your physical strength much as I appreciate,
value and need it. But the love episode,” she continues unconsciously, in
blushes, averted gaze, occasional paleness, interspersed with impulsive
advances, all of which are here set down in their equivalent words, “the
love episode consists in far more than physical violence. In fact for
many centuries physical violence has formed no essential part of it. It
has on the other hand a tendency to fluctuating, wavering, more or less
trembling behaviour, that to the uninitiated appears contradictory or
inanely silly. If you are upset or disconcerted audibly or visibly by
any of the obstructions I am placing in your way, you are really not
strong enough for me. By my instinctive need for being controlled, I
am impelled to see how much strain you can bear, how strong your mental
and spiritual nature is, for I need that control more than anything else
in the world. I hope you will not fail me at this juncture, for I want
above all things to find a firm base to which to attach the wavering,
vacillating, fluctuating algæ of my emotions.”

All this she says in her actions, while her words may be: “Oh, Rob, you
certainly are awkward. You don’t understand me a bit.”

How tragic if Rob should take her words as gospel truth and substantiate
them by showing any irritation whatever!

§ 152

Possibly this is the place to say that if the young husband shows
surprise or, worse, irritation at any of the, to him, seemingly bizarre
acts of his new wife, he is providing her with exactly the reaction which
her careful and thorough unconscious is looking for, finding which it
says to itself: “Well, if I find many of these defects, farewell! I’ll
attach myself to some other man.”

Whereas consciously she is triumphant in her power over him to make him
anything from miserable to blissful.

This unconscious tendency to test the husband, based on the biological
necessity of choosing a mate at least slightly stronger spiritually,
psychically, mentally than herself, determines much of the actions of a
maid with a man.

In married couples where the man is properly schooled in love, this
wrangling on a low level does not take place except at its minimum at
the outset. Frequently the woman immediately senses, unconsciously,
that the man whose attentions she is receiving is of the stronger type
necessary to compel her emotional submission.

This theory admits the possibility of perfect marriage between the lowest
and highest types of intellect (which is an egoistic-social expression,
not erotic) with proportionally happy results.

It also shows how every married couple can reinstate themselves in the
most satisfactory mutual relation, even if they have already started on
the wrong path.

If the husband realizes that he is only being tested, and by a
sympathetic examiner who really wants him to pass the test, and that it
requires only a little thinking on his own part to make him erotically a
fully followed husband instead of a led one, he will certainly give the
necessary time to visualizing the pattern his actions will have to take
thereafter in order to make him successful.

In married couples where the man does not know or cannot learn the erotic
principles, the surface wrangling based on the perpetual unconscious
test continues, involving more and more of the couple’s egoistic-social
activities, until finally it becomes so acute that nothing can prevent an
open rupture.

In other couples where the man’s reactions satisfactorily answer the
woman’s first tacit interrogation, the dramatic testing automatically

Woman’s tendency to dissemble thus includes not merely verbal lies
but also all forms of her behaviour toward her husband. Of course, if
her erotic nature is entirely engaged she will have (for example) no
possible motive to spend his money above what is needed for pleasing
him through her developing her own personality in every way, or in
acting in any capacity whatever that would in an egoistic-social sense
be to his detriment, for through the perfect love episode she so
strongly identifies herself with him that all his interests, even the
egoistic-social, are superlatively hers, quite in contrast with the wife
whose love impulses have been ungratified.

The wife with the ungratified love impulse reacting unconsciously, as
described above, with irritated but unsatisfied desires, unconsciously
reasons to herself on the talion plan because she has not risen from that
to total identification. The irritated but unsatisfied wife, still on the
“eye for eye” level of reaction, unconsciously says to herself: “If I
cannot get something out of him one way, I will another, to pay for all
he is getting out of me. If I cannot make him give me a real love episode
I will make him give me other things. I will buy what I want and send him
the bill. He shall give me money if he cannot give love. Love is what I
want but I must have something.” This is unspoken, but still it exists.

§ 153

A man cannot feel what isn’t there without phantasying up to the point of
hallucination. But what isn’t there is simply what he hasn’t put there in
the way of response to appropriate action on his own part. He cannot put
it there if he is mentally autoerotic. (§ 112).

He must know in advance what to expect, and what is the necessary
expression of woman’s erotic feelings. If he does not, he is doomed to
surprise of an unpleasant character; for he will either be disappointed
when he finds that his wife’s reactions are not up to his narrowly
limited pattern or he will be embarrassed by a too great gush of feeling
on her part and an arousal of passion so tremendous that he does not know
how to handle it.

This embarrassment is related to a certain type of mild disgust or
aversion felt by men to whom some women make advances not considered
truly feminine by the men. This does not refer to the brazen
self-assertiveness of the prostitute which is by most men clearly
recognized as egoistic-social. It refers to a truly erotic abandon
sometimes seen in a woman who absolutely throws herself upon the man that
has inspired her fancy. This attitude makes impossible for some men the
satisfaction of victory or conquest.

This too great abandon on the woman’s part evokes in such a man the
thought either that she is sexually more potent than he (an erotic
reaction in no way connected with egoistic-social impulses); or that
her own environment has been such as to bring out this expression in
her. If she has been brought up in a family where love needs are frankly
recognized, their wholesomeness will make her much more responsive, at
once, to her husband’s love.

Naturally he will be neither embarrassed nor dismayed, if he has himself
been trained to believe that his capacity for woman’s love is, if fully
developed, as great as or greater than any woman’s could be. If he was
thus well oriented, he would be pleased rather than otherwise to be
relieved of the task of removing love’s inhibitions from his wife.

§ 154

Fate is inscrutable and mysterious. Dame Fortune is a mother-imago.
The husband who does not understand his wife is a child who does not
understand his mother. According to her fancy she may give or not give
what he wants her to bestow upon him. Children comparatively early
learn to manage their mothers, but the man who has failed to learn how
to control his wife erotically has not advanced even as far as these

Such men are the ones who profess to revere the mystery in the feminine
nature. They are simply a case of arrested emotional development. There
should be no mystery in marriage. There is plenty of room for passion and
romance without demanding that there shall be in it any mystery whatever.
The inscrutability of the mysterious expression on the face of the _Mona
Lisa_ was the expression of Leonardo’s extreme infantility, the erotic
childishness of a man who never really loved a woman as a man should.

Man’s projection of mystery upon woman is his infantile attitude toward
her expressing his unconscious desire not to give but to receive.

What constitutes the husband’s complete erotic control is the removal
of all mystery, his full perception of all the factors in the erotic
situation. One of these is the actual fact as to whether or not his wife
has in the love episode reached the erotic acme.

He frequently thinks, if he is one of the numerous men without insight,
that she has; when as a fact she has not.

It is sublimely stupid for a doctor to tell the wife to pretend that she
has reached the erotic acme in every love episode, and to say that no man
can tell whether or not she has reached that degree of exaltation; so she
might as well deceive him in order to keep the marital peace. Such men as
follow this advice have not the remotest resemblance to human men, nor
do they deserve to retain the love of their wives even if they have once
gained it. One can tell whether a person is _unconscious_ or not, or if
she sleeps or not. A real husband can tell whether or not his wife has
reached the erotic acme.

§ 155

The unconscious inference of a man’s reaching the erotic acme is that his
wife has done the same in the erotic episode or surely will when he does.
This feeling is so strong as to make almost everyone take the sign for
the thing signified. The thing signified is the woman’s utter surrender.
It is signified by the sign, which is the man’s losing or letting go his
own control. Prior to the wife’s erotic acme there is no time during
the love episode when the husband’s loss of control will not affect his
wife’s unconscious adversely. She will surely though unconsciously resent
his throwing down his burden of tension before he has torn hers from her,
because his own tenseness is his only instrument wherewith to operate on
hers. His desire lapses with his relaxation. Her relaxation cannot take
place if he loses his tenseness before she does, even if it be only one
second before.

Men would make happy marriage certain if they should universally grasp
this idea; namely, that their letting themselves go entirely without the
prior or simultaneous erotic acme on the part of their wives, is putting
themselves on the same level as the animals without, however, being in
the animal environment.

To that level the wives cannot sink; yet the husbands allow themselves to
do so almost without exception. Because of centuries of repression their
wives are not able to respond to the erotic situation as rapidly as they
do themselves, and yet the husbands act as if they responded fully. This
type of behaviour is practically equivalent to producing a hallucination
in themselves.

To use a term from pathological psychology, every husband who does
not secure his wife’s erotic acme before or with his own, actually
_hallucinates_, for his own benefit, that reaction on her part. He is
exactly like a man walking along a level sidewalk and making as if to
step upstairs each step he takes and thinking he is climbing—in so far,
just crazy, that is all.

It would be much better in some ways for a husband of this type to
renounce love episodes forever, for such actions form no part of a real
one; they are as productive as half a pair of scissors without the other

This solitary vice in a husband (masturbatio per vaginam) always comes
from his hallucinating the effects he should produce instead of producing
them. He is alone with his wife in his sexual (not love) episodes
because she is practically not there. He may never have thought of the
question as to where she may have been. She may have been mentally in the
arms of another man. “With another person and yet alone!” is a terrible

Yet when we think about what we see and hear among so-called humans we
must realize how much alone all except the very fewest are, alone because
they have not yet discovered the only method of not being alone—the
supernal communion of one man and one woman. The few men who have learned
how to love, and the exactly equal number of women whom they have taught,
are the only persons in the world who are not absolutely and completely
as alone as would be a solitary chemical atom in an illimitable universe
of space.

§ 156

All the crowds and jams of people we see are merely, for the most part,
huddling together, as an unconscious compensation for the sickening
loneliness they feel in their heart of hearts. We see them in amusement
parks, and in all places where hordes of people congregate; and
undoubtedly a part of the impulse which moves them is their unconscious
solitude for which they get only consciously perceptible consolation
in the sight of each other and rubbing of elbows and treading on each
other’s feet.

If one should ask if sex is the sole or major motive in all this the
answer would be, by no means, if physical sex is all that is meant. The
need is for companionship which many followers of crowds, not having the
companionship furnished by the complete love of a man or a woman, fancy
they get from the sight or elbow-touch of masses of people.

The deeply, profoundly, thoroughly married couples are the only ones
who have no need to fear anything that comes from incompleteness. They
neither crave nor are averse to other people, but the most fully mated
never appreciate crowds very highly. Into their own mystic circle of
binary personality they cannot take a third.

For these thirds there is no hope but to find each his or her own
complementary personality. The women wait; for there is nothing else to
do. They cannot find by looking; they can only give themselves the gaunt
consolation of distracting their own attention from love until they are
found by the proper men.

For in spite of the great popularity which George Bernard Shaw gives to
his ideas by putting them in epigrammatic and striking literary form,
the truth is manifest to all who think straightforwardly and do not
believe in a statement simply because it is paradoxical and therefore
emphatic—the truth, namely, that women are not the choosers but if there
is any choice they are the chosen, and are themselves utterly helpless
and must remain inactive.

They can try to attract men but the more they try, the more will the
erotically developed men unconsciously and unerringly infer that there
is some weakness about them that necessitates this strenuous attempt
to compensate for it. The harder they try to attract men, the more
suspicious do the men become, particularly those having any deep acumen.
As for the men being simply the helpless puppets of a sex of sirens—it is

The world is made up of the unmarried, the truly mated and those
ill-assorted thirds whom ignorance has left unhappy and helpless until
knowledge comes to the male partner.

§ 157

Many of these third persons are the wives of ignorant husbands who have
hallucinated the fusion which they have never made. The husband fancies,
perhaps, that the fusion can be effected by the wife; that all he needs
to do is to submit himself to the wife as dispenser of delights and that
by merely having him she will glow and burn with the heat necessary
to fuse their two souls and make them a whole instead of fragments.
Delusion! Hallucination!

The child says to a stick, “This is a horse.” The child husband says to
himself, “This is my wife,” whether he knows it to be a fact or not. And
curiously enough the child knows he is only fancying; but the man, in
thousands of instances, _does not know it_.

This unconscious, and therefore almost irresistible, tendency on the
part of men to believe the existence of what they wish is the main
obstacle to man’s control of the erotic situation. Based on biological
necessity, which in the merely instinctive acts of animals secures the
sexual reaction on the part of the female, the unconscious phantasy still
persists in the human animal, the phantasy that the erotic acme of the
man causes that of the woman every time. But it is a phantasy in the
majority of civilized marriages and tragically enough it may be the only
flaw in some where congeniality and affection are flawless.

The bridegroom has this definite task before him to know his wife,
for he can never know her before marriage. His knowing is a process
of perception, the failure to perceive being a form of anesthesia in
himself. Adam knew his wife—the only good he brought out of Paradise and
fully compensating for the loss of Paradise.

When he knows his bride he will know exactly how much resistance he
has to overcome in order to develop her. She cannot tell him anything
in words, for no woman can know. Not even the most experienced woman
sexually can put into words exactly what unconscious resistance she may
have to even a virgin-pure man.

The bride’s resistance is just as real a force as is the gravity in
a pile of stones. At the bottom of that pile of stones his bride’s
soul waits and he has to remove them one by one; actions which take as
concrete an amount of psychic energy as if they could be measured in
foot-pounds or kilowatt hours.

§ 158

The groom not only has to see what resistance there is, but has to
know that he must remove it all. The bride herself has no more power
or control over these resistances than she would if she were literally
buried under tons of rock. She depends entirely on his work to get at her
soul. Will he ecstatically embrace one of these stones that cover her
up? Like the child calling a stick a horse, will he say: “This stone is
my wife. If I can believe hard enough, she may change, in my eyes, into
my wife and I shall be spared the effort of releasing her from the weight
which now oppresses her. How sweet and tender this stone is! How it
throbs and palpitates as I squeeze it tightly in my arms! There, it has
melted entirely. Dear wife!”

Insane? Yes. And the woman herself, alive and breathing under the load of
stone which antiquity with more than bestial blindness, with infinitely
more than granite heartlessness and marble stupidity has heaped upon her
for centuries, is so deeply buried that she cannot herself even direct
her own release. Dimly she hears her man apostrophizing with love the
outermost stone. Will he ever get the sense to drop it, pick up one after
the other of those overwhelming _her_, and actually penetrate to her and
grasp her in his arms. Good heavens! How can intelligence be conveyed to
that imbecile?

Or instead of hearing her husband hallucinating her release by means of
rapturously caressing a stone that holds her down, she may have the still
more poignant agony of hearing him make love to a woman already released
from her bonds by some other man.

“Damnation inconceivable! Is he, my husband, willing to take the woman
whom other hands have released, whom the work of other men has made
practically theirs, and whom he virtually steals, or as a beggar accepts
like a fruit skin from another’s feast?

“Or is it,” the poor soul may think to herself, “that really in my
own true being, I am less attractive than the women whose weight of
oppression so many men have cheerfully lifted? What have I done to make
myself so unattractive? Must I curse my parents, who have, besides,
perhaps, helped to entomb me alive under these stones?”

§ 159

The situation in many marriages is not less tragic than this. The husband
in this case has either not been able to see the obstacles that lie
between him and complete emotional fusion with his wife, or if he has
seen them, he has not thought himself able to remove them. In either case
he may be more ignorant than to blame; but not after he once gets the
point of view of this book.

His accomplishment, the only virile accomplishment in the world, is
plainly before him. He must acquaint himself with the exact amount of
resistance and repression; and he must remove it piece by piece if it
takes a half a century. He must realize fully that it is a piece of
constructive work, and that no one else can do it for him.

§ 160

The anesthesia of the husband and the failure to come up to the constant
test are both increased by man’s ignorance of the fundamental biological
nature of the woman.

The only remedy for it, which will improve the conditions of marriage
and reduce to the minimum infidelity of wives and of husbands as well,
is the husband’s deeper knowledge of the feminine element. This
knowledge, which should be an essential part of a man’s education, cannot
be entirely given him by another, but must be the result of his own

It is obvious that the intimate adaptations required of each marriage
are absolutely individual. While all women and all men are actuated by
similar unconscious motives, the specific working out of these motives
results in an interplay of forces which is different in each individual
marriage. There are over a thousand types of this intimate interplay of
personalities within the marital state; also the types change in special
cases from time to time. It is easy to see, therefore, that the minutiæ
or marital living have endless combinations of possibilities, concerning
which the husband would do well to become as well informed as possible.

§ 161

The hasty husband takes his own motions and his own erotic acme, which
are but parts, for the whole. He takes the most physical aspect for the
love episode. Naming the part for the whole is a sort of metonymy, which
is a figure of speech and not literal truth. The hasty husband is in this
sense unconsciously a liar. He cannot tell the truth because he cannot
know it. If we say that this fragmentary performance of his is taken by
him to be logically or intellectually like the whole, we must say that
he rates low in discrimination. He ought to know that the fragment is no
more like the whole thing than a hand is like the body.

Giving the physical side of the love episode too great a value is like
connecting it too closely with the imagination, or with that part of the
imagination that is bound up with the emotions. The factor in the sex
life of most of the animal-like humans, that is, most closely connected
with the strongest emotions, is the acme. In true human love, then, the
strongest emotions are reassociated with other elements of the love
episode than the acme. And the acme is the greatest desideratum only from
the unconscious or instinctive point of view.

The imagination, the power of visualizing (and other forms of
representations as well) then involves the power to affect, or to effect
changes in the somatic reactions of the husband that render possible the
prolongation of a sex act, and its transformation, into a love episode.
The imagination of organic sensations in himself, in the normal husband,
retards the progress of the love episode for the benefit of the wife. The
hasty husband lacks just this imagination and the love episode is hurried
through in the manner of an animal sex act.

The husband who reaches his acme of erotic relaxation even before actual
contact with his love object has not in consciousness dwelt much upon the
numerous preliminaries. Methods of retardation are methods of admitting
into consciousness the different innate associations between emotions and
the touch and movement sensations constituting the first stages.

§ 162

The use of the imagination as a transformer of unconscious energy is a
comparatively modern technique and one made use of with great effect in

As a transformer of unconscious psychic energy, or possibly, better, a
re-shaper, it has sharply to be distinguished from phantasy.

Phantasy is the continuous mental activity that goes on night and
day in the mind of every man, woman and child. It consists of visual
images, auditory images, tactual, kinesthetic, thermal and a dozen other
qualities all combining with each other in the patterns by no means
fortuitous, but organized into groups, some of which have been called
complexes. This organization is the unconscious wish. The patterns
formed are unrelated to time, are unmoral and follow exclusively the
pleasure-pain principle.

Phantasy, which is entirely spontaneous, or independent of any conscious
volition on the part of the individual, is about ninety-nine per cent
submerged in the unconscious. The one per cent more or less that emerges
into the consciousness of the ordinary man of the world comes in as
day-dreaming or as dreams of the night. In these two forms it appears
in a shape least disguised, and is therefore the chief material of
psychoanalysis, which is an inventory of the contents of the unconscious
of the individual, an inventory that shows what possibilities he has of
future better adaptation to his environment. It also shows why the people
who are ill-adapted have failed to adapt themselves.

We are obliged to assume a causal connection between the phantasies of
unconscious mind and the physiological process in the body on the one
hand and on the other the broader life currents of the individual.

§ 163

Only by assuming this causal connection, which must also be a two-way
connection, can we explain any influence of mind upon body. From
innumerable instances, however, we are all absolutely sure that the mind
influences the bodily functions and that the bodily functions influence
the mind.

In no sphere of human activity is the influence of the mind on the
body more clearly demonstrable than in the erotic sphere, both in its
equatorial physical zones and in its polar intellectual zones.

This makes it absolutely incontrovertible not only that man can control
his emotions, including the erotic; but that he should, if he wishes to
be human and not merely animal.

In the causal connection between hypersomatic (mind) and hyposomatic
(body) there is at least one link called the imagination. But the fact
that imagination is so broad a term makes the understanding difficult as
to how the various mental mechanisms, mostly unconscious, interact with
each other.

The fact, however, is well known and admitted by all scientists that the
mind does influence the body. It causes changes in the functions of the
bodily organs. A purely mental state caused by external stimulation,
for example, the hearing of some bad news or witnessing of some tragic
occurrence, will alter the internal secretions of some of the endocrine
glands, postpone digestion or upset it, accelerate circulation and
respiration and cause other changes.

Sex phenomena are no exception to this principle that bodily processes
are conditioned, that is, partially caused, by mental processes. Sex
cannot be a part of love until love which is hypersomatic (mental) is in

It would be exceedingly satisfactory if one could devise a mental pattern
for love that would apply to all individuals; but the fact that the
various factors are over twenty in number, making over four hundred
combinations of only two at a time, render it practically impossible to
do more than make a generic verbal formula such as “better and better
every day.”

It is impossible however, to get away from the fact that the sense type
of imagination has not a little influence in the original rapport that
springs up between two persons of opposite sex. Obviously a colour-blind
man could not be much influenced by the iridescent beauty of some young
women. There are people who are tone-deaf, and, to such, a monotonous
voice might not have the deterrent effect it would for some. There are
individual variations in the sensitivity to every one of the twenty-odd
sense qualities that enter consciousness from time to time. Any of these
variations may play a part in the first attraction exerted by young
people on each other.

§ 164

Every one of these twenty-odd different qualities of sense impression
may enter consciousness from time to time as a representation or
reverberation of an original sensation. The commonest of these is sight.
The appearance of some facial expression, for example, of an attractive
woman, will, spontaneously recur to a young man for a long time.
Motivated by pleasurable emotions experienced at the first sight, these
visual memory images will recur again and again, each time accompanied
by, if not caused by, the continuance or reëmergence of the pleasurable

But visual images are not the only ones that spontaneously recur. If the
individual belongs to the auditory type, there will be numerous auditory
“images.” He will hear in his mind’s ear the joyous timbre of a woman’s
voice, also perhaps motivated by the same recurrent pleasurable emotion
he experienced when listening to it the first time.

Visual and auditory “images” or representations may be supplemented by
those of any of the other twenty-odd qualities of sense impression.
The memory of a dance recalls a number of these, tactual, olfactory,
kinesthetic, mostly, however, in the average person, not clearly

People have to be taught to see what is before their eyes. They also
have to be taught to recognize timbres of musical instruments, intervals
between tones, composition of various chords, etc.

Conscious attention must be used to enable some people to recognize the
difference between various flavours, perfumes, odours, bouquets of wine,

This sharpening of sense discrimination is accomplished by means of the
conscious attention to the various images.

The sharpening of sense discrimination with the assistance of the
mental standard supplied by the various representations of former sense
impressions involves a change in the sense organ itself if we include
in the organ, as we must, its nerve connections with the brain and with
other organs.

§ 165

This is how we may conceive the effect of mind upon body. The
imagination, composed of its various qualities of images visual, auditory
and other, involves the change in the sense organ and in the brain and
the other organs connected. We are thus being changed continually,
both body and mind, by impressions coming from without and by the
reverberations of these impressions that are known as mental images.

Is it any wonder that the drama, and lately the moving picture, is
recognized as one of the deepest transmuting influences in human life?

§ 166

Every sense impression is a suggestion. It is a psychological axiom that
every idea tends to work itself out into an act on the part of the person
that accepts the idea. This is the basis of hypnotism and any form of
non-hypnotic suggestion.

It is evident then, that the sense impressions received every second of
our waking life (together with the images or reverberations of these
impressions that continue to live in the unconscious and appear only
occasionally in consciousness) accumulate suggestive force. It is evident
that every individual is subjected from birth to a continuous stream of
suggestions, some of which he accepts (among them the most often repeated

If these suggestions are formed of images (conscious or unconscious) of
health, happiness and triumphant activity, they will be accepted and
constitute a pattern for the entire life activity of this individual. And
the same is true _vice versa_.

The impressions thus received constitute the content of the imagination
and this content produces either well-being or ill-being (not to say
illness) in the individual so influenced.

§ 167

The inference that a wholesome erotic pattern must be provided for young
people, and adopted by older married persons, is therefore irresistible.

_The only way actions of any kind can be made better is by introducing
into the mind a pattern according to which these actions are to be
carried out._ The only means for introducing this pattern into the
mind of a man, if he does not already possess it, is by way of the
imagination. The various visual, auditory and other images must be
created in the mind of the individual before it will be physically
possible for him to follow this pattern.

Mere verbal reiteration of a clumsily worded command or prohibition
_never_ provides the imaginative factor which is the essential one.
Prohibitions are discussed elsewhere (§ 197).

Thus it appears that the imagination is the vital factor in any action
just because it constitutes the pattern of the action.

It is always much better psychologically to show or describe a person
doing what one desires him to do than in abstract terms, to tell him to
do it.

§ 168

Therefore a love pattern is needed. It is needed by the husband in order
that he may control the erotic situation. It is not needed by the wife in
order that she may control, for in the erotic sphere control is not hers
nor does she want it; but it is needed by her in order to know whether or
not she is being properly controlled erotically.

As no two individuals are alike, this makes it evident that the function
of the husband necessary to create a happy marriage is to emphasize the
mental (or hypersomatic) side of it, for the purpose of including every
physical aspect in the most comprehensive way.

Again it must be reiterated that instinct alone can never _guarantee_
a successful married life. The erotologist knows full well that the
husband, relying on instinct alone, remains unutterably selfish, and
therefore anesthetic, in thousands of cases; and that he can, if he has
the confidence of knowledge, make of his wife a whole wife and not, as in
the majority of cases a fragmentary wife.

A man should not let his wife remain fragmentary. He should not be
content with either the domestic-servant fragment or the cook fragment,
nor should he regard her solely as washwoman, stenographer or performer
of any other essentially egoistic-social function. “Wife” should be
restored to its original Anglo-Saxon concept of “the trembler,” i.e.,
the thrilled woman. Many men on the contrary speak of “the” wife, exactly
as they would say “the” cook, or “the” chambermaid.

Instinct alone, which is purely selfish, in spite of its occasional
marvellous faculty of providing for the future of others, can in
almost none of the intimate marital relations insure a continuance of
completely satisfactory love episodes. Continuance of these alone cements
married love and furnishes the foundation for a truly artistic erotic
superstructure—a love mansion, having a beauty far surpassing the lust
hovels in which, after their tinsel and gingerbread honeymoon cottages,
the average married pair spend the remainder of their lives.

§ 169

If, as assumed broadly above, the remedy for the ills which beset the
married life which is guided by instinct alone are more excitement for
the woman and less for the man, this only in one way suggests a balance
which (as many wives consciously or unconsciously perceive) grows less
and less as the years go on.

The man advances in his profession, makes more money, gains more or less
gratifying triumphs in the world of affairs, joins a club or lodge, meets
and has more or less stimulating contacts with more and more of his
fellow-men. His wife the while remains mostly in the home, is restricted
by the necessity of care of children, if any. If there are no children,
she is generally steered by her husband into the least stimulating life
possible, for he knows unconsciously that the interest of his wife in
other people is mildly displeasing to him. He wishes to own her all—her
actions, her thoughts. If he does not someone else will, and she will
be, to that extent, not his. It will be difficult for him to reason that
this type of ownership is merely the gratification of an egoistic-social
instinct. If there is one thing a man should not, for his own erotic
interests, want to do, that thing is the establishing of an ownership or
possession. Ownership of wives dates back at least to the early Roman
times when one had to own and control one’s wife’s whereabouts in order
to satisfy oneself, and one’s neighbours, that one’s freeborn children
were one’s own.

As a gratification of the egoistic-social instinct, ownership of the
wife’s person, property, actions and thoughts is in direct antagonism
with pure love instinct, which controls most satisfactorily and
gratefully when there is no egoistic-social compulsion acting through
husband on wife. Pure love instinct is gratified only when the control is
perfected by eliminating all egoistic-social motives of husband or wife
from the situation.

This is realized by some young women who marry but insist that they be
not supported by their husbands.



§ 170

Those who marry from merely physical sexual motives, who overemphasize or
overweight the physical side of sex, are not able to gain from marriage
what the rationally controlled love episode can give them. They naturally
never admit that this is the case. They frequently do not know it

They think perhaps that they are putting the love instinct ahead of
the egoistic-social, but their knowledge of men, women and things is

They are to a certain degree anesthetic in the etymological sense,
because they do not know how to live most fully. They are in a position
similar to a child who should find a package of new thousand-dollar
bills, and take them out into the street and play with them. They are
infantile in appreciation of values, which, however, they may later learn.

To overweight the physical factor in the love between the sexes and
to place the love motive ahead of the egoistic-social motive are not
by any means the same thing. It has been already indicated that the
overweighting of the physical factor proceeds from an egoistic motive,
and is thereby vitiated as a truly human motive in the highest sense.

Both parties to such a marriage can, if they see and understand, change
so as to raise the level of their own motive and give the true love
motive its real place, as might be illustrated by the case of a young man
who marries a woman author twenty years older than himself, motivated
at first solely by the glamour of her reputation; but, finding in her a
great heart and womanly qualities he had not before suspected, becomes
her true mate in every sense; or the girl who, dazzled by the wealth of
a suitor old enough to be her father but rich enough to “buy and sell”
her father several times over, finally discovers in him a completeness
and fullness of love that quite satisfies her when she realizes that,
in spite of his egoistic instincts that have made him rich his love
instinct is still richer. All that is necessary in a match “misgrafféd
in respect of years” is the proper subordination by both partners of the
egoistic-social to the love instinct.

§ 171

Unconsciously, of course, such people know from the first that they
should get from each other the sweetness par excellence of human
life, but while they know this unconsciously and it makes some of
them uncomfortable and eccentric, even unhuman, they fancy so many
inhibitions and barriers to it (particularly in the case of narrowly
brought up women) that they do not gain from marriage that unspeakable
and indescribable sense of identity each with the other that would
successfully obviate any tendency whatever to infidelity.

This feeling of identity is not only thus physical in the husband
and wife at the climax of erotism, but is given tangible, visible,
and in all ways perceptible, manifestation in their children. It is
given ideal existence in the community of interests it engenders in
connection with the family life, interests which are here the expression
of the ego-instinct, but here, as they should be, interests arising
from the subordination of the ego-instinct to the now brightly revealed
love instincts, which are not accessible to consciousness until after
enlightenment in the technique of the love drama.

Those people also are unable to give fullest expression to themselves in
the love episode who consciously or unconsciously, frankly or otherwise,
place the egoistic-social motive above the love motive, who marry “for a
meal ticket” or for any other egoistic-social motive such as wealth or

Both of these may be taught, if they can be made to see their false
positions. Those who overweight the physical motive can, unless their
intelligence is of too low an order, be made to see eventually, that they
are contenting themselves, or trying to make themselves content, with
much less happiness than they are capable of. Those who overemphasize the
egoistic-social end of their relation to their spouses, can be instructed
in love, so that they can raise their union to the higher order, unless,
of course, there is the comparatively rare absolute incompatibility of

Marriage need not in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred be dissolved.
Within reasonable limits; that is, excluding the widest possible
divergence of taste and interests, almost any man can learn to control
the erotism of almost any woman, if he wishes to take the trouble to
learn how to do it.

§ 172

Most emphatically this does not mean that the control here referred to
is all there is to a perfect marriage. It has been reiterated that the
erotic control is only the foundation, but important as all foundations
are. The erotic control leads not only to the maximum egoistic-social
freedom, but to the greatest possible development of each of the
partners’ distinctive personality.

The love confidence gained by the establishment of the one-way control
in the erotic sphere only opens the windows of the house of love to the
invigorating air of the outdoor world.

The unhappily married are unhappy because each is watching the other
continually, devoting to this conscious and unconscious surveillance so
much energy that either they have none left for the development of the
properly subordinated egoistic-social interests or they lose so much
energy in the unconscious conflict that they tend to become neurotic.

The unhappy married ones’ lack of love confidence is the most deeply
gnawing care known to human misery. No egoistic-social interest of either
but is regarded by the other as drawing him or her away.

§ 173

The marriage of two young people need not be postponed over a month or
two after they have learned enough of each other to be sure that they
are placing each motive, the love motive and the egoistic-social motive,
in the proper relations to the other; namely, that the egoistic motive is
recognized as being of less value toward their happiness. No fears should
be allowed to enter their minds about the happiness of their marriage.
Birth control should prevent any fear from the egoistic-economic point of

§ 174

If it should seem to some that the potentialities of the marriage that
has been called a lottery are usually those of misery, and that the
ordinary marriage only brings out the miseries of existence to which
some shut their eyes, and from which others run away, it need only be
suggested that almost nothing runs itself in the world as we know it, but
everything needs constant upkeep, and it would be unreasonable to expect
that when the nuptial knot is tied all activities in the direction of
keeping it tied could be given up.

If the world about us is in constant change, to which we are obliged to
make constantly changing adaptation, it is even more strikingly a fact
that the world within us is constantly changing; and that we need to
control this change ourselves and could not, if we tried, find a more
fascinating occupation than learning how to make our inner adaptations in
the best manner.

Marriages that run down before death has ended them are those where the
man has lost his psychic potence, due to initial or gradually developing
anesthesia on his part.

In the courtship he has taken a man’s part, presumably; but has stopped
his wooing after marriage, because he has confused egoistic-social
impulses with erotic. He has thought marriage was a civil contract by
which he came into possession of something. Love scorns contracts; as it
evaporates in barter. Most unhappy marriages are of the “run-down” type.
The thesis of this book is that the only distinctive man’s work in the
world is to keep winding them up. The man that lets his marriage run down
is probably a perpetual-motion crank at heart. He thinks that in marriage
he has found a thing that will run by itself forever.

§ 175

A passionate desire for culmination represents well the attitude of the
executive head, or man of affairs who advances business by delegating
details to others. There is no detail of the behaviour of the truly mated
that the husband can want to be delegated to underlings. Love is not a
business and no part of it should be either left undone or delegated to
another man; though there are many husbands who apparently think some
of the preliminaries can be omitted. Possibly the hasty husbands have
thought that only the “high spots” of love could be or should be touched
by them, because their business or professional lives do not permit them
to look into every detail, much less do it themselves. But the minutiæ of
love are like the notes of a violin score; they all have to be played by
the violinist and they are all given their due effect and proper shading
by the true artist.

Possibly one may say that all men cannot be virtuosos in love,
particularly as it is infinitely more complicated than even the
musical art; but at any rate all can use their utmost endeavour in the
performances of the duets, which constitute the most valuable works of
art for the family and the nation.

§ 176

The unconscious polyandry of the average married woman is absolutely
proved if she does not regard her husband as satisfying in every way. If
there is the remotest doubt of this, if she has the slightest repulsion
or disinclination or aversion to any feature, act, mannerism or personal
quality of his, she is withholding from him, possibly blamelessly because
unconsciously, a feeling which, as she cannot give it to him, she must
and does unwittingly give to some other man either seen or dreamed of.
Absolute surrender on her part to one man is essential for a strictly
monogamous union, a complete union entirely excluding the appeal of every
other man under the sun. Any reserve whatever on her part is a reserve
that will be kept by the unconscious part of her solely for the use not
of her husband but of some other man possibly not yet seen by her; later
she may meet him.

How can a woman give herself, if she has keen sense discrimination, to a
man who isn’t strong, isn’t clean, isn’t well-dressed, isn’t generous and
loving? If she has this fine discrimination she will not run the risk of
approaching a marriage with such a man. If a man of undeniable strength
(mental, not physical) makes love to her, his sincerity and the strength
of his desire will enable her to change other characteristics in him
before marriage.

§ 177

There is, as Krafft-Ebing argues, a natural “sexual subjection” of woman
(i.e., “women are naturally masochistic”). Saying that the essence
of femininity is to be erotically led, does not mean that women are
naturally masochistic. In no sense does being led, in the purely erotic
or love impulse aspect of the marital relation, imply masochism. Only,
however, when the ego impulse is so strong as to need much sacrifice in
the love episode can really masochistic feelings occur in the wife; and
in the husband only when he uses the love episode as an egoistic act, by
which he is to compete with other men in the favour of his wife.

If that jealous stage occur, it is a condition where the full expression
of the love instinct itself is diminished in favour of the other. The
even momentary thought that his wife could be given a more thorough
relaxation in the purely erotic sphere by another than himself, a more
perfect consummation than perfection itself, which he has induced in her,
is a thought that is in itself masochistic and least likely to occur to
either of a thoroughly married pair.

The idea of masochism as an element in marriage is worthy of
consideration only because it is the ruling motive of the wife in those
unions where the husband has not assumed control of the emotional
situation and the wife has been so well trained in the Christian duty of
self-sacrifice as to believe that she must suffer—truly a humiliating
thought for the husband if he happens to be a man. He thus vicariously
suffers from his own ignorance.

Masochism, the tendency to gain pleasure from the pain another inflicts
on oneself, is a natural phenomenon at a certain stage of pre-synthetic
childish erotic development; and, in all normally developed persons, is
outgrown. Indeed, a woman,—and _a fortiori_, a man, who retains any great
masochistic element in his love life—is, in that respect alone, a child
and not an adult, and incapable of adult love until that tendency is

But it persists more frequently in women, and constitutes a part of the
sexual inhibition already referred to. It is a tendency about which all
young husbands should be warned in advance. They are not to allow their
wives for an instant to have any reason to infer that the wife’s marital
“duty” is to sacrifice herself or any part of herself to the physical or
mental pleasure of her husband. The eradication of this idea can be begun
by the man long before engagement, in spheres of activity quite far from
the sexual, and should be steadily and consistently carried on. He should
never ask her to do anything “for him,” especially not anything to which
she may have expressed any unwillingness, not to say repugnance, herself.
He should see to it that he gets his pleasure from the knowledge that
what he does is most likely to be gratifying to her. This is, of course,
the attitude of the real man.

A girl should be instructed enough not to be impressed by the mental
autoerotism of “lounge lizards” who are feeding their own erotic
phantasies by sight and touch of her. They are more than likely to become
mentally autoerotic husbands.

While on the topic of masochism it is necessary to warn all young women
that in no sense is self-sacrifice the object of a healthy marriage.
The self-sacrifice which is so lauded in theologies is a sacrifice of
egoistic impulse gratification. In the face of a great erotic exaltation
there can be no such thing as a thought of sacrifice. No woman really in
love can perceive anything but gain in really erotic action, for if she
knows herself she realizes that her strongest impulses are those of Eros.

§ 178

Any conflict in her psyche is between the erotic and the egoistic-social
impulses. The only inhibitions against the erotic impulses, as
everywhere, appear to be the egoistic-social ones, though it has been
pointed out that even the erotic instinct itself contains an innate
antithesis that might cause a conflict even were the egoistic-social
influences minimized or even removed.

One suspects that in the woman these unconscious doubts must come
primarily from not having been completely controlled, so completely
in the erotic sphere that no egoistic-social impulses are for the
time perceptible. A woman of a highly refined nature whose husband’s
erotic control is not forceful enough thus to expunge totally all
egoistic-social impulses for the time being, will have a certain number
of them not disposed of.

It thus happens that such a married woman, when loved by another than
her husband and yielding to him, will in so doing obliterate even this
residue of egoistic-social inhibitions. This explains why an illicit
love is to them so powerful a stimulus. They observe a sudden separation
of the two spheres of impulse in themselves, and they realize the
illimitable enhancement of the erotic motive over the egoistic-social,
the latter naturally appearing as dross against the gold of the erotic.
If in the clandestine love they have swept away all egoistic-social
conventions, they have practically rendered themselves subject to erotic
impulses alone. Thus the very fact of this love being illicit appears
to render it purely erotic, absolute, all-comprehensive, the conflict
settled beforehand.

§ 179

Freud in his paper on the love life already referred to[26] makes the
observation that there is a type of “love” in a certain class of men in
which the man seems to prefer as his loved one a woman who is at least
nominally possessed by another man. His attentions to her are carried
on as if he were rescuing her from some oppressor. In extreme instances
he often professes to be solicitous for her virtue, which consists
in his eyes only in not being used by the other man. Freud continues
that the other man from whom this type of lover wishes to rescue the
woman represents this lover’s own father, the woman his mother, and he
himself is the little boy in the original family triangle where the son,
according to Freud, is always jealous of the father and continually
trying to get his mother away from the father. The “love” type here
described is another instance of the compulsion to repeat, referred to
in his book _Beyond the Pleasure Principle_.

It should be the privilege of the husband to sweep away all
egoistic-social inhibitions. He should see to it that his actions
throughout his married life are such that his wife makes to him the total
surrender here implied. If he does not, he has not taken all the steps he
might, to render his marriage absolutely happy.

§ 180

It is likely that the woman who responds thus erotically to the illicit
love situation, because love is thus cleared of all egoistic-social
inhibitions, may be the counterpart of the man just described. If he
wishes to rescue her from a personality, apparently her husband, but
in reality the father influence (from the point of view of the lover),
so she may wish to be rescued, i.e., removed from all influence of
authority—the father influence in her own personality. For in the
unconscious the father factor represents the egoistic-social impulses. It
is the father who requires compliance with egoistic-social demands. And
whoever can sweep away all these influences symbolically rescues her from
her own father. It should be, and in many cases indeed is, the husband
that does this; and if he does it completely there is no motive for
illicit love.

In no sense can the so-called sacrifice made by a woman of these
egoistic-social demands be regarded as a masochistic self-sacrifice
involving any erotic factor. The erotic is not sacrificed but magnified.
The misfortune is only that in some cases the husband does not cause the
sacrifice which then is left for some other man to bring about.

Without for a moment implying that this illicit love on the woman’s
part has any more ethical value than the man’s attempted rescue, it is
impossible not to believe that the periodical abolition by the husband
of all egoistic-social inhibitions of his wife is a purification of the
erotic factor. Taking place within the marital state and effected solely
by the husband, this makes the light of love burn so much more brightly
as to illumine every other life activity.

§ 181

Jealousy is treated by Ellis in a vein apparently unaware of the
contribution made to this subject by Freud, who shows that the man is
jealous because he is either physically or psychically impotent. If the
husband either knows or thinks that he is unable to lift his wife into
the empyrean, the thought inevitably comes to him that there must be some
other man who can do it. If this thought is an unconscious one it is
manifested in every restrictive measure taken to prevent his wife from
meeting other men, for which measures he assigns not the real cause,
for he does not know it, but all sorts of reasons developing through
the unconscious mechanism of rationalization, either that she is not
attending to her duty, or neglecting him and his interests or spending
too much money, or what not. This condition of jealousy is all the more
likely to exist in the husbands who are so ignorant of love that they are
unaware that there is any such thing as the woman’s acme of pleasure in
the love episode. This form of jealousy, primarily due to the husband’s
ignorance, is all the more painful to him because he does not understand,
and all the more tragic in its irony.

It seems, too, quite probable that part of the jealousy of women is due
to a corresponding situation of their own erotic life. A woman who fails
to apperceive in consciousness the overwhelming somatic reactions which
occur at the climax of the love episode is in a condition quite analogous
to that of psychic impotence in man. If man’s jealousy, as has been shown
by psychoanalysis, is really caused by his psychic impotence, i.e., his
anesthesia, woman’s jealousy is evidently also caused by her anesthesia
which is a form of psychic impotence.

§ 182

The case cited by Ellis (that of Mrs. Samuel Pepys, as recounted in the
famous diary) contains only the man’s side. Possibly if the lady’s side
were known it would be found that she was herself deficient in love
and that she dreaded her husband’s possibly finding a woman who could
react toward him in a more complete and satisfactory way than she could
herself, this entirely apart from the question whether or not it should
be the duty of the man to evoke such a response. She would feel unhappy
and all the more conscious if she knew it was his duty and that he had
fled from her to others where perhaps the task would be easier.

It is also insignificant that Pepys himself records: “I must here remark
that I have lain with my moher (wife) as a husband more times since this
falling out than in, I believe, twelve months before, and with more
pleasure to her than in all the time of our marriage before.” This cannot
be adduced as a proof that the jealousy aroused in the wife was the cause
of any improvement in the marital relations of the Pepyses, but that
his noting an increase in her pleasure simply indicates that because of
his own lack of imagination he had not been playing the husband’s part
for the preceding twelvemonth as he should have. His own imagination
was probably stirred by “Deb’s” propinquity; as it would not have been
had his erotic life with his wife been on the high passional level it
should. This is the only reason why a little jealousy is supposed to whet
the edge of love. If Pepys had been grounded in true love instead of a
small-minded man, flinging notes to his wife’s maid, advising her to
help him out in the lie he told his wife, he would not have failed so to
control his wife’s erotic emotions that she would have outshone any other
woman in attractiveness.

§ 183

Furthermore Ellis admits, and quotes his authorities to show, that
jealousy is “an emotion which is at its maximum among animals, among
savages, among children, in the senile, in the degenerate, and very
specially in chronic alcoholics.” He notes that the supreme artists and
masters of the human heart, who have most consummately represented the
tragedy of jealousy, clearly recognized that it is either atavistic or
pathological. Shakespeare made his Othello a barbarian, and Tolstoy made
the Pozdnischeff of his _Kreutzer Sonata_ a lunatic. But the jealous
person is above all (at least psychically) impotent and projects, on the
most likely object, his own desires, which he cannot fulfill for himself.

Let every jealous husband ponder this. If he cannot utterly satisfy his
wife erotically, he is jealous of other men simply because consciously
or unconsciously he thinks some other man can. Also if he cannot, his
inability probably proceeds either from ignorance of the art of love or
from a foolish disbelief in his physical powers, a most common delusion
in the ordinary man who is brought up in the tradition that sex activity
involves a loss of vitality, instead of constituting, as it does, an
exercise of the interstitial glands, whose functioning is necessary to
the most robust health and success, both of which are inimical to or
destructive of the emotion of jealousy.

§ 184

One of the factors that make marriage a lottery for those who cannot or
do not know about the unconscious element in the marital situation is the
unconscious homosexuality characterizing so many men and women.

It is quite probable that the only impossible women, psychically, are
those who have this unsuspected homosexual trend. It is an absolutely
proven fact that the men who have it strongly developed are themselves
impossible, unless they are cured of it.

The subject of homosexuality is one of the most serious, most complicated
and most difficult ones of all the subjects connected with the marital

Let it not be understood that the homosexuals are all manifestly
woman-hating men or man-hating women. Their homosexuality is not as
evident as that. Sometimes its only visible sign is being what is called
a man’s man or a woman’s woman.

The man who enjoys men’s company almost exclusively, the club man, the
man who never misses an opportunity to meet men, who invariably rides in
the smoker but who does not invariably smoke there, who is much more at
ease with men than with women, is in all these reactions motivated not
solely by the conscious motive of carrying on so-called male activities,
but partly by an unconscious homosexual tendency which, though it may
never express itself in overt acts, is still an influence dominating the
majority of his actions, and, to that extent, is an influence working
against his completely hologamous status. It is, in some if not all
cases, undoubtedly the factor that is most powerful in preventing him
from obtaining the erotic control over his wife necessary to a perfect

Our man-made civilization has strongly homosexual tendencies, and has
had them for centuries, expressed not only in men’s (and women’s)
clubs, associations, fraternities and secret societies, but also in
the compensatory woman-hunting and woman-worshipping done by some of
the individual men, as a reaction from the unconsciously perceived
homosexuality of their environment.

Psychoanalysis has shown, indeed, that some of the illicit sex
relationships maintained by men are mostly for the purpose of
demonstrating to the men themselves, bachelor club men, for example, that
they are not really homosexually inclined.

Psychoanalysis also shows the close connection of this deficient
masculinity with jealousy on the one hand, and with paranoia on the
other. Also it has been shown that morbid jealousy in woman has
sometimes the same cause. “The root of this jealousy is a non-conscious
homosexuality. She is jealous of her woman friend, because she herself is
in love with the friend. She puts herself in the rôle of the man.”[27]

From these considerations it will be evident that the man or woman with
the unconscious homosexual trend cannot be a true mate until the trend is
redirected. The obverse of this is also quite suggestive, although not
necessarily operative in all instances; namely, that, if the passion for
his wife cools, it _may_ be because he has, or has developed, in himself
a homosexual tendency of which he is unconscious.

§ 185

A careful distinction needs here to be made between the sex activity that
is really erotic—that of two perfectly mated lovers—and that which does
not rise above the hyposomatic (physical) level. This latter invariably,
except in the most unintelligent and spiritually undeveloped of humans,
contains a conflict which may or may not enter consciousness. There is
in people highly civilized according to puritanical ideals always a
conscious conflict between the physical expression of love and their
traditional ideas that the body is base and ignoble and the soul is a
thing separate from the body and superior to it.

Psychoanalytic research into the unconscious shows that there in the
levels below, and inaccessible to consciousness, the conflicts that like
a perpetual tug of war are uselessly consuming large amounts of psychic
energy are also, in that shunting of energy from its natural destination
to other termini which may be practically any of the organs of the body,
causing a derangement that if long continued easily becomes a functional

The conflict that is conscious also produces a physiological derangement
that may become a disorder. So in either case, whether the conflict be
conscious or unconscious, the physiological processes are more or less

If, as sometimes happens, a man’s inhibitions are too great, he is
absolutely unable even to begin to have a love episode. If they are less
great, he may be able to begin it but not to continue it. If there is any
inhibition at all his part in the love episode is affected by just that
amount of psychic energy that represents the force of his inhibition.

The conflict that is expressed in physical derangement, disorder, malaise
or any other unpleasant result is almost always a mental conflict that
can be resolved by mental means better than by physical.

In sex activity that is truly erotic there is no conflict in the man and
none in the woman. It may be said that sex activity never becomes truly
erotic until these conflicts have subsided.

But in the unhappy marriage a part of the conflict on the husband’s part
comes from his unconscious realization that he has not assumed the truly
masculine rôle.

§ 186

A brief résumé will be now given of conclusions so far reached. Man’s
control, while difficult for him to gain and particularly in the love
episode, is yet essential to his perfect union with his mate, unless
there is proved to be, which has not yet been done, a congenitally
uncontrollable type of men. Such men could never satisfy any except women
who are erotically the most highly developed, in the sense that anything
or nothing would send them into transports—a comparatively rare type of

Haste on the man’s part in the love episode, his acknowledged
precipitateness, his hurry to relax sexual tension, is due directly to
his own anesthesia, his insensibility to the preliminary reactions of
his mate, and in some cases a total ignorance of the existence of her
final reaction. He does not know what effect in his mate he should really
strive to get.

A knowledge of that effect involves a recognition of the fact that all
women are unconsciously trying continually to test the man’s psychical
strength. Many actions of women cannot be accounted for except by
assuming this unconscious motive, for which, of course, there is a
biological cause in the attempt of nature to mate the woman with the
strongest man. The congenitally uncontrollable (if any exists) man will
go down under this test, uniformly.

This biological cause produces in the woman the tendency to dissemble.
This tendency makes the woman coy, bashful, modest, reserved, retiring.
As animal she is always facing away from the male in the sexual act and
as Ellis has noted, only the human female has in the human love episode
turned so as to face the man. But this subhuman characteristic is always
present in the woman, manifesting itself in some of her actions if not
in all, and constitutes an obstacle to the man’s self-control; for,
unless he has insight enough into the feminine character to discount her
dramatic prevarications, he will infer that it is useless and hopeless
for him to try to produce any effect whatever in her, so he might as well
produce what effect he can—namely, in himself. He does not know that the
most satisfactory result in his own feelings is produced by the reactions
which he effects in her, through the reservation of his own supreme
reaction until she is past knowing it herself, until, therefore, he has
convinced her that his control is greater than hers, that his strength is

As it is evident that in animal copulation whatever acme is reached is
reached simultaneously by both sexes, because of the briefness of the
act, it is reasonable to suppose that the man’s unconscious situation
contains the implication that his own erotic acme necessarily involves
the woman’s. In other words every man has an unconscious phantasy
that when he has completely satisfied himself his mate is completely
satisfied. Only after years of married life do some husbands begin to
suspect that something is missing from the marital relation.

If the male _subhuman_ animal is excused from any concern as to the
proper reaction of the female, that does not excuse any man and yet
in so far as he is animal he has no cause to act otherwise than take
his satisfaction without delay. The female animal is accessible only
in the rutting season. Human woman is at all times accessible to the
love expressed in true mating. Human sexuality has not only made a
fundamental distinction between procreative and erotic love episodes but
also has almost obliterated the periodicity in the sexual accessibility
of the woman. Therefore human love is _toto cælo_ different from animal

Considerations of the matter of control lead to the conclusion that it
is possible only by means of the imagination, and because imagination
is only the reawakening with possible recombination of images of past
experiences, we are again confronted with the problem of explaining how
the experience to be imaged in advance and looked for and waited for may
be presented both to the men who have and to those who have not had sex

As one cannot control anything except according to a pattern, the pattern
of controlled action must be in the mind of any who intend to achieve

The method then, by which the husband is to achieve control of his own,
and thus over his wife’s erotic reactions, is simply observation. He
absolutely requires fully to note the effect that what he does has on his
wife. If he succeeds in averting his gaze, figuratively, from himself to
his partner, he will find that his own reactions take on a lessened value
in his eyes. His own reaction, one of ecstatic pleasure is, in comparison
with his wife’s, highly concentrated on one detail of the love episode.
This is, of course, the most important one in animals and would be in
humans, if humans were animals, but the fact that they are not and that
erotic values have developed in humans that do not exist in animals,
makes the man’s erotic acme take on a much smaller significance and value.

Most husbands go through the love episode as if they were animals, merely
procreating progeny, while yet starting from no such purpose. The purpose
is, of course, in so many men solely the purpose to gratify themselves
and not anyone else, that, of course, any deliberate thought of ways and
means of gratifying any other, does not occur to them.

Many men, indeed, are filled with embarrassment, if not dismay, in
perceiving a deeper and more extended reaction in their women than they
perceive in themselves. With such a power which they observe developing
in their wives they do not know how to compete. The situation of a
husband who finds himself developing in his wife a much richer and fuller
erotism than he thinks he has himself, contains the unconscious factor
of unflattering comparison. Unconsciously he does not wish to find
her richer than himself because that gives him a sense of unconscious
inferiority and injures his feeling of control. So the marital situation
contains the unconscious wish on the husband’s part not to find in his
wife an erotism greater than his own, entirely apart from any conscious
idea he may have that he should not have an “oversexed” woman as a wife.



§ 187

Marriage, in the sense of a legal bond between two people who are bound
together in no other way than that affecting the interests of the
egoistic-social type, is not truly monogamous.

True monogamy between two people whose interests are entirely implicated
each with the other’s on both the conscious and the unconscious level of
the erotic sphere needs a new name for which is offered the term hologamy
or whole marriage—complete marriage.

The completeness implied here is that in which both conscious and
unconscious affection and passion are involved. The hologamous union is
the one in which both partners have allowed instinctive impulses from the
unconscious to enter consciousness. Their erotic insight consists in just
this admission.

A hologamous erotic union is the assurance of earthly felicity. It is
utterly uncaused by egoistic-social factors, though it may yet itself
be the cause of egoistic-social success. At any rate it is the most
favourable condition for the development of both members of the union
along egoistic-social lines. No man now imperfectly married will fail
to become more successful in his life outside of the home by improving
the conditions of his life within it. The most important condition has
been clearly indicated. No woman, now imperfectly married, but is waiting
(for that is all she can do) for the time when her husband may chance to
improve his erotic technique, or learn from others how to do so.

It is tacitly assumed by both European and American society that
either the erotic or the egoistic-social motives may independently
and exclusively be an adequate basis for a marriage. On the contrary
psychology shows that the erotic one is the only one necessary, and that
the egoistic-social is never adequate, without the erotic, to constitute
anything but a mildly sentimental business relation between man and woman.

§ 188

The erotic motive is not represented or meant by the ordinary expression
used by married people who say, of course, they love each other, or they
would not have married. Erotic means more than “inspired by love” in the
sense that the uninitiated use the term love, which in common language
is of very wide application including even food and clothing and all
other egoistic-social expressions. Erotic not only means inspired by love
in the most whole, passionate sense but implies also that the persons
activated by erotic motives have at least some knowledge of the art of
love, a knowledge which includes something about the unconscious factor.
Otherwise love has not progressed to its higher phase of erotism, and is
mostly made up of affection which is primarily egoistic-social. Love is a
word that has become too debased in the minds of most people to serve as
a term for what is here outlined.

If on the other hand a marriage is a hologamous one, in which the
husband’s egoistic-social motives are duly subordinated to his erotic
motive, then the erotic motive, freed from extraneous elements, will
cause both his conscious and his unconscious passion to be centred on one
woman. No other marriage deserves the name. “Marriage” is derived from
the Latin word _mas_, male, and originally referred only to the woman.
She was “manned.”

If we should say today that a woman was thoroughly manned we should be
understood to mean that she had sexual relations with one or more men.
To most we should not probably convey the meaning that she had been
completed, as an originally defective demi-human being, by the necessary
complement to fill out her being to the totality of human possibility, or
that this completion involved the development in her of an absolutely new
attitude toward the world which she could not attain without physical and
spiritual union with one man.

This implies also that the corresponding statement should be made of the
truly married man. As an originally incomplete or defective demi-human
being lacking a complement, he needs to be completely womaned, for which
indeed there is no appropriate word of Latin derivation. But if we should
say a man was comprehensively womaned we should be understood to mean
probably that he had both a wife and concubines—that his affection and
egoistic-social impulses were gratified by the former and his erotic
needs by the latter. Yet it is really not possible for a man to be
perfectly and completely womaned except by one woman. If his counterpart
is a mosaic of fifty different varicoloured fragments he cannot be said
to have done anything but use a separate facet of each woman composing
the mosaic, and to have left unused all her other facets. So he cannot be
said to have seen any of the other facets, a lack of vision constituting
a kind of anesthesia already mentioned in § 141.

§ 189

Monogamy is not perfect if there is anesthesia on either side. Anesthesia
prevents complete union. Only the mates who are completely directed each
to other are fully married, and marriage means not partial but complete
union. All degrees of fragmentary attachment are defective monogamy and
so not monogamy at all, but unconscious polygamy.

Furthermore, that portion of the ego which is not attached to one’s
mate exhibits a tendency to attach itself to some other one’s actual or
potential mate, simply because attachment is a case of tension fixed to
relax on a definite object, and if the legally sanctioned object has been
detached, if the tensions natural to either sex are, by some complex,
detached from that object, they tend of themselves to seek relaxation
from some other person. If a man is completely satisfied with his wife he
will not only seek no other woman, but will be dangerously attracted by
no other, and _vice versa_.

So we can suppose a possible scale on which a husband’s union with his
wife, not hologamous, is measured in units from 1 to 100 such that we
might say a man was sixty-five per cent married to his wife, while yet
she might be a hundred per cent married to him. This gives 10,000 degrees
of non-hologamous marital union, M 1 — W 100 representing a man with
only slight interest in his wife who is herself quite devoted to him.
This man’s other ninety-nine per cent of libido might be directed to any
number of other women. If it were directed toward one other woman he
would undoubtedly be happier if he divorced and remarried. But it is the
thesis of this book that M 1 — W 100 is an impossibility.

A division of libido as disproportionate as this would not imply much
split in the man’s libido. He would thus be ninety-nine per cent devoted
to his paramour and only one per cent to his wife. His paramour would
be his _de facto_ wife. But if his ninety-nine per cent of libido were
directed toward ninety-nine other women he would be called a personality
of maximum diffusion.

§ 190

Now the personality in perfect health tends toward the preservation of
unity. The man whose love life should include one hundred women would be
unable to devote more than one per cent of his libido to one woman. He
would be as far from being a unit as, on the supposed scale, he could
get. He would be not one personality but a knocked-down pile of parts
waiting for a skilled mechanic to assemble.

There are different types of men, those who tend more, and those who tend
less, to preserve their own unity of personality.

In general the progress from infancy to adulthood is a progress from
partial synthesis to complete synthesis, so that the type of man
whose synthesis is incomplete is an infantile and dissociated type of
personality; or better than dissociated, he might be called dissipated,
disjointed, dismembered, disassembled.

Unfortunately, the infantile condition can completely satisfy,
consciously, the infant of adult size. This makes it difficult to
approach him, makes him difficult of access. If one present him with a
fully developed adult woman, he immediately recoils much farther into his
youth which he regards as a fine quality. Because of the uncomfortable
nature of the comparison he unconsciously sees his inferiority and
unconsciously compensates for it, by getting (in the only way he can) the
feeling of satisfaction that comes _via_ mental autoerotism whenever it
fails to be obtained from the outside world.

Adult society always produces this reaction somewhere in the sub-adult
psyche; so it becomes a great problem, to devise some method for getting
the sub-adult to desire to react in adult modes.

§ 191

Any plurality of women for a man implies reservation. He cannot love all
of a woman entirely who thinks he loves in any degree any other woman.
If for example he “loved” one woman for her hair and another for her
eyes, another for her smile, this could not be called love, but only
physical sex stimulation, or fetishism. Man’s supposed love of more than
one woman is where his reservation makes him love one woman consciously
and the others unconsciously. But conscious love is not complete love
either, so that a man who consciously loves his wife, but is not able to
arouse in her the erotic acme for any reason, cannot really be said to
love her. He may rationalize to himself that his wife is a good mother to
his children, a good housewife, patient, painstaking, self-sacrificing;
but that other women whom he has seen interest him more in various
intellectual spheres.

His wife could not be a brilliant pianist, good conversationalist, noted
writer, artist, and singer, all at the same time. It would be a physical
impossibility. He is interested in all those spheres in other women; why
should he not find pleasure in their company? Why should he not call love
that interest which the thought-provoking, intellectually stimulating
woman arouses in him? Simply because he would not and probably could not
evoke in her the fullest erotic reaction, and probably has not in his own

Plurality of women would compare with Guyot’s violinist who should say
he could play “Yankee Doodle” only on one violin and only a concerto on
another, or could play only in E flat Major on one, and A flat Minor on
another, needing a different instrument for each of the twenty-four keys.

That is not to say women are not different, but only that man’s
satisfaction in marrying one is dependent largely on his own erotic
technique which is far more important and valuable than either musical,
artistic or any other technique; and that if he does not play upon her
emotional instrument, to his and her complete satisfaction, he has
no right to try to play on any other. Men go from one musical erotic
instrument to another, saying, virtually: “I cannot play on this one. Of
course, I shall be able to play on the next. This is an inferior one.
Besides, the more practice I get the better I shall be able to play.
After I have had a hundred or so I shall be a virtuoso.”

Women in general, however, are one as good as another for the production
of the erotic music which can completely satisfy a man. He not only needs
no more than one but on _a priori_ grounds it can be safely said in
almost every case that he can evoke no more satisfactory erotic response
from one than from another, regarding this from the purely erotic
viewpoint and not confusing it with the egoistic-social one.

Undoubtedly it gratifies a man’s egoistic-social impulse of
self-magnification to have a woman flatter him, to make him feel that his
very presence excites her, thrills her through and through. It is almost
automatic in some women thus to try to play upon a man. But this too is
never from purely erotic motives, but largely from egoistic-social ones.

The man who prides himself on his success with all women is constantly
confusing the erotic with the egoistic-social aim. And many a man
considers that he has fulfilled this erotic aim when, through his
personal magnetism or his susceptibility to flattery, he has succeeded
in getting a woman to consent to try to surrender herself _in toto_
to him. But in using this pseudo-erotic situation as a factor in the
egoistic-social sequence, he is showing an utter blindness to the essence
of erotism, which consists in the woman’s fully conscious placing of the
erotic motive ahead of the egoistic-social one she has been following in
her course of verbal or other flattery and blandishment.

Can any satisfaction come to a woman except the purely egoistic-social
one of superseding another, his wife, in the preference of a man whom
she endeavours to captivate? Can any satisfaction except egoistic-social
come to a man who prides himself on his conquests, on how easily women
fall for him? Can he be said to be motivated more by erotic or by
egoistic-social impulses in his attempts to add other women to his list,
or to run risks and arouse in his soul the excitements of danger?

§ 192

If he need the excitements of a plurality of women, it is proof that
he cannot get a normal amount of tension and relaxation from his own
wife. There are those, of course, who live their married life on the
theory that the physical tensions and relaxations of sex are too gross
for refined marital relations, and that their wives would be shocked if
they experienced them. The boy brought up with the _angel_-imago (or
mother-imago, see § 195) as his ideal of woman necessary to be the mother
of his children would inevitably identify his wife with a prostitute if
he succeeded in evoking the highest psychical exaltation in her erotic
sphere. He has plurality ingrained in his nature from the cradle; the
feminine sex is not one but at least two: angel and prostitute. Unable to
conceive the two existing in one woman, in fact unwilling to conceive
this, he perforce puts the mother of his own children in the angel class
and would be shocked if she evinced any of the characteristics of the
other class.

The irony of which is that whatever reactions the prostitute shows are
her attempt to imitate what she conceives as the highest type of erotism,
what her patron’s highest erotic development would call for. Whatever
impulses of erotic nature she has, which are few enough in the class that
practise promiscuity for pay, are so overweighted by the egoistic-social
impulses of material self-advancement, that they lose whatever value they
might otherwise have.

A so-called prostitute, like Victor Hugo’s Mlle. Drouet, who after
promiscuity devotes herself with absolute fidelity to one man is no
longer a prostitute. She has, in thus placing the erotic above the
egoistic-social motive, fulfilled the highest human function except that
of parenthood.

It is possible that a man of many women may think he is seeking for
his final mate. Such men have been heard to express somewhat similar
sentiments. “If I could,” said one roué, “effect a grand passion with
some woman, she would be the only one for me.” He thought he could not
gain this result from his wife, but if he were a whole man with erotic
unity instead of a roué with the disassembled psyche, he could effect the
grand passion quite as easily with his wife as with another woman.

§ 193

Some considerations on the status of prostitution are necessary in every
book that attempts to discuss marital relations. Far as the poles
asunder though they may be in externals, they are yet the common activity
of the same man in many instances. Figures show that the married man is
the main support of the prostitute. What he does to his psyche in the
direction of actually splitting it by this double life has been described
more or less in the following manner. It is not merely that he either
lies to one woman and consorts with another and is under the psychical
strain of remembering never to confuse the parts of this double drama he
is enacting. It is worse than that.

It has been shown through studies of the unconscious in men that show a
strong leaning toward fallen women, that they are unwittingly reënacting
a jealousy drama of their own infancy in which they try to rescue from
the father their own object of earliest love, their mother (cf. § 179).

Furthermore, the average man’s bringing up leads him unconsciously
to separate all the women in the world into two classes. This simple
division is characteristic of childhood, which sees everything either
black or white and does not conceive fine gradations. The two classes of
women are the angel-mother type and the devil-prostitute type, and this
distinction with hardly any other he maintains sometimes till the end of
his life.

§ 194

Strangely enough this division of women into two classes, while it is
made by most men in their unconscious, evokes opposite reactions in two
types of men, some of whom are found by the psychoanalysts as “more
potent” with the prostitute type, while others are more potent with their
wives. Yet these men are not wholly potent to the extent of carrying out
the love episode to a conclusion perfectly satisfactory to their wives,
and in the illicit relation they are still more precipitant.

It seems, however, most probable that the illicit woman has the effect
on them of producing an overvaluation of some particular factor in the
nature of a fetish which has lost its overplus of emotional value in the
case of the wife. As has been already pointed out, this overvaluation
of one or another factor in the total situation of the episode has an
accelerating effect in the episode with the less familiar woman, an
effect which, because of habit, has become less in the episode with the

Another element in the situation is that with the woman of the prostitute
type the man is concerned in no degree with any reaction on her part,
whereas with his wife he may, in some cases, feel a certain dim sense of
responsibility. Added to which the professional prostitute frequently
pretends to be controlled, while the average wife does not.

It happens that this unimaginative paucity of merely twofold division of
women unfortunately involves almost without exception the unconscious
assumption that his sexual gratification is the function of the
prostitute and is both absent from and not supplied by the woman of the
angel type, from which stratum of society he naturally selects his wife.
No wonder then that many men consider their wives “oversexed” if they
show any great passion. “Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.”
This type of man who rigidly demands that his wife shall be an angel
(as, when an infant, he thought that his mother was) makes, or tries
to make out of her a sexless worker or butterfly while he goes to the
prostitute weed for the satisfaction of his imperative sexual needs.
He is unable to act as if his wife had exactly the same human body as
himself, the same or homologous glands and identical sexual needs with
himself, the denial of which is the cause of much if not most of the
nervousness of women and accountable for a good part of their ill health
and weakness.

§ 195

The boy of five or less has no means of knowing that his mother has any
sexual needs, jealous though he may be of his father. The same boy when a
man of thirty, if he keep the same childish viewpoint that women of the
angel type are as angelically sexless as his mother was to him, will,
unless he picks out a woman of the other type for a wife, which is, of
course, exceedingly rare, never be wholly free from inhibitions against
the full development of the true love episode with his wife. Regarding
the prostitute as of another caste, he thus avoids with her alone the
inhibitions caused by his childish separation of all women into two
diametrically opposed castes.

It is obvious that this early-formed association of mother (and of
course, later, wife) with absence of sexual interests or even instincts
may in some men be a large factor in causing the repression of the
majority of the components of the love episode. One component, however,
alone, is impossible for the man to repress, though he may later find to
his supreme satisfaction that he can control it and retard it; namely,
the final relaxation of all his erotic tension.

If he continues love episodes with his wife and has a fixed but
unconscious idea that with a wife all varieties of preliminary love
actions, in brief, every component but the one to him absolutely
essential component of dropping his burden of erotic tension,—which by
the way he might just as well drop elsewhere—are actions more appropriate
in a brothel than in a home, he will tend more and more to avoid with his
wife all but the essential, as he virtually conceives it.

§ 196

It is admitted by all students of married life that not less passion but
more is needed, and the precipitant husband undoubtedly needs more. For
him the love episode’s passion is concentrated into the climax of it. It
has no beginning, no middle, and no end, for it rarely if ever gives the
full satisfaction that is gained by the husband who really takes care of
his wife’s erotic responses. For the ignorant husband, who is emotionally
about five years old, the love episode is featureless and crude like a
five-year-old child’s drawing of a man on a slate. It has no proportions,
a head, rectangular body and two straight lines for legs and quadrangular
sinkers for feet and asterisk hands.

The passionless love episode is no love episode at all as it lacks the
essential of deep love. Putting more passion into his love for his wife
is of course exactly what the man, whose woman’s world consists of
only two widely sundered castes, is unable to do unless he succeeds in
overcoming the early-fixed habit of his thought about what he knows as
love. But putting more passion into his love for his wife is exactly what
he must do to be fully a man and to control her erotic emotions.

One who is fully a woman latently, as are all with negligible exceptions,
is never fully developed into a woman, actually, except by the man
who can play on her, as on a violin, all the melodies of which she is
capable. She will never know herself unless she is thus developed by man.
She will be like an undeveloped photographic plate.

§ 197

The attitude of society toward prostitution is, as a whole, as
unorganized and haphazard as could be, in all civilized countries. Both
kinds of laws are made, prohibitive and regulative, neither of which has
any more effect on men’s actions than would a law have which attempted
to prohibit drawing breath or to regulate the number of inhalations per
hour. In general the laws have been prohibitive and have met the same
fate as any prohibitive legislation. It has been realized by a few deep
thinkers that no prohibitions have to be made against what nobody ever
thinks of doing, and that the existence of a prohibitive law is proof of
a widespread tendency to do the thing prohibited. All prohibition is,
from the point of view of both conscious and unconscious psychology,

§ 198

A part of the motive that leads the husband to resort to the prostitute
is the widespread notion mentioned by Ellis (op. cit., VI) that
prostitution has a civilization value in adding “an element of gaiety
and variety to the ordered complexity of modern life, a relief from the
monotony of its mechanical routine, a distraction from its dull and
respectable monotony.”

These are the arguments advanced for the use of alcohol also. While
admitting, however, the desirability, indeed even the necessity, of
variety in life which means the family life as well, we should not
forget that the lack of variety in marital existence is mostly if not
exclusively due to the infantility of the husband. Marriage is the most
vital institution of society, but the one that has been most carelessly
left to its own haphazard development.

For this abandonment of marriage to its own fate amidst the most hostile
possible environment of rapidly developing egoistic-social impulses, the
husband is solely to blame. His fault, however, is primarily due to his
bringing up and chiefly to that feature of the mother-imago which leads
him invariably to look for interest, variety and all good things from the

The child’s frequent whine, “Mother, what can I _do_?” is here virtually
repeated by the unimaginative husband, defended by the sexologist and
answered by the prostitute. If, as has been intimated before in this
book, age cannot wither woman nor custom stale her infinite variety,
then the infinite variety, or enough of it, at any rate, to satisfy any
husband, should be evoked from his wife.

In the fragmentary love of the average married man it is not to be
expected, of course, that he will find much variety. For fragments do
not, or at any rate, a single fragment does not, provide much.

The relief from the monotony of the average married life is most
desirable in every way, but the relief can come in the best way only from
the variegation of the marital pattern, a change that is fully within the
power of any husband who will acquaint himself with the findings of the
modern psychology of love.



    Certain it is that the chrysalis, man, is emerging from the
    cocoon of tradition.—DR. ROBIE.

§ 199

The new husband is the man who realizes that the type of passion which
he has idealized to himself as appropriate for himself is logically
quite as appropriate for his wife. Quite as logically he may deduce
that if there is, therefore, to be not only no double standard with
regard to promiscuity, but also no double standard with regard to the
rights to erotic exaltation, he may create a single standard by means
of reducing the number of his love episodes to a minimum of intercourse
for procreation only. Many men have done this or nearly this. But all
who try it find that there are two sets of difficulties in the way, the
difficulty of attaining this semi-ascetic end from the purely volitional
point of view, and the difficulty, or more exactly the detriment, which
modern science is beginning to demonstrate as inevitably coming to the
psychic as well as the physical powers of the ascetic individual.

Also the single standard idea is to be transferred to the degree to
which each partner carries, and is carried, in the love episode. Truly a
double standard in this respect is little better than a double standard
in promiscuity. There is no good reason why it should be right for a
husband to reach his erotic acme at each love episode and wrong, or even
indifferent, for the wife. The true single standard of married life
implies, therefore, that the same standard of erotic gratification should
be for both husband and wife. Man has no biological privilege here over
woman. What is right for man must also be right for woman. So we see that
the new husband is the one who recognizes the single standard of monogamy
and also that of hologamy which provides for the wife’s erotic acme as
well as for the husband’s.

§ 200

Woman fundamentally and biologically calls for man to be the stronger
to impregnate by force the impregnable fortress of her femininity, and
he who fails to do this fails to make a good husband. The training for
husbandship, irrespective of wealth or social position, should start from
this fundamental principle of masculine control of the marital situation.
This control should begin at the altar, and never weaken, never relax for
a moment, except at the times when the wife is by her erotic emotions at
the climax of the love episode incapable of witnessing its relaxation, at
least of envying her husband.

After a long courtship in which there has been much worship of the woman
by the man, there may tend to be preserved, to hang over, a sort of
worship habit in the husband; but this should give place to an inflexible
attitude and a positive aggressive treatment, Petruchio-like, yet only in
the erotic sphere, increasing in power as the years go by. Woman will
test it hourly to detect any weakening, jealous of the strength to be
handed down to her offspring. It is unconscious in her. She cannot help

In the modern woman with a vocation, to which there cannot be a possible
objection if it does not exclude her proper maternity, the relation to
her husband must still be one of emotional subservience. She cannot
control him emotionally without making herself a mother-imago to him.
He cannot, even unconsciously, accept this control of himself by
her, without regressing to the condition of being dominated by the
mother-imago, without being to her as her child and not her man.

Modern marriage must be an entirely new and different thing from most
previous marital relations. Mastery over the woman must remain, if
marriage is to continue; but it must be a spiritual mastery, a love
mastery in place of the old Rome-inherited legal, economic and physical
mastery. Thus the poor husband of a rich wife need lose no mastery,
nor need the non-professional husband of a professional wife, nor the
unintellectual husband of an intellectual wife, the uneducated husband of
an educated wife.

Mastery or control does not consist any more in the regulation by the
man of any egoistic-social activities of the woman, the dictating of
what she shall do or wear or think, nor in the acts of the man himself
consciously designed to steer her this way or that. Mastery does consist
in what the husband, and the husband alone, can make the wife feel. It
does consist in the establishment and maintenance of a sense on her
part of belonging to him, which he can develop even though granting her
in the egoistic-social sphere, the most absurd license—the _Hörigkeit_
(mentioned by Freud) based on the peculiar intensity with which he
gratified after awakening it in early married life, her erotic need.

§ 201

Possibly the great increase in the number of divorces is due to the
increasing expectation of something unutterably fine in marriage and an
inevitable disillusionment resulting from concrete experience. There
would be no divorce on the grounds of adultery if the married woman felt
that her paramour could give her no joy remotely resembling what her
husband could. The adultery of the man, too, comes from disappointment.
Where there is absolutely complete satisfaction the motive for adultery
cannot exist.

The man or woman with conscious and unconscious passion of the one
developed into a habit may be attracted by other women but the other
woman’s attractiveness will not be as great as his wife’s. And deflection
in either husband or wife, if they think at all precisely on their
action, must be quite repugnant to them in every way. The uncontrolled
man who does not master his wife’s erotic emotions is disappointed in her
and seeks his supreme gratification with another woman who appears to be
able to give him what he thinks he cannot get from his wife in the way of
appreciation, sympathy or understanding.

If this is the man’s attitude then, of course, he cannot have grasped
the idea of the higher monogamy, which is not that of getting but of
giving. No man in any degree cognizant of the concept of true mating
can fail to find even the woman to whom he happens to be married, able
to receive if he practises properly the technique of presentation. He
must have found certain qualities in her before he married her, which
his awkwardness in presenting himself have perturbed, and he can now
review these and work upon them until he is utterly accepted. For his
presentation of himself and his service to her in the worship of Eros
are the only means toward his adequately virile satisfaction. _Credite

No one who has had prosperity in the egoistic-social sphere, who has had
a comfortable home, for example, will choose adversity, will thereafter
prefer to live in a tenement, noisy, squalid. No man who has experienced
the greater profundities of virile control of the total erotic situation
will choose to give any less of himself to his wife. No wife who has
received from her husband the maximum that a man can give, which is
himself—that is, his supreme control of himself and of her—will choose to
look for anything greater or higher, for it does not exist even in the
most extravagant imagination.

§ 202

In the marriage of the future we must make sure that the art of love is
thoroughly learned by the husband. Without it, he has only a small chance
of making a successful marriage. And we must see to it that this new art
of love be not like Ovid’s the adulterer’s art of winning a woman away
from her home, but the husband’s art of retaining her in it.

This will require a readjustment, possibly of the concept of “home.” The
home meant here is not in any sense the material house and furniture and
embellishments. The home is the family, to which all the members should
belong in a sense far more spiritual than the average. The truly mated
couple belong to the family forever and to the children, until the latter
marry and make families of their own. Any deflection from the purely
hologamous ideal on the part of either the husband-father or wife-mother
is a misfortune to the latter, but unequivocally the fault of the former.

The marriage of the future, if it is to follow the single-standard
pattern of equal joy for equal mutuality, will be in no way inferior to
any type of so-called romantic marriage of today. It will have all the
totality of fusion of the individual’s body and soul, all the fusion of
the personalities of the two mates. It will have all the finality and
indissolubility now wished for it by the present generation whose marital
relations begin to crumble in a year or less. It will never degenerate
into a situation where life seems not worth living, but will be the only
circumstance in which life is consciously and perennially known, as well
as believed and felt, to be thoroughly worth while.

By their confusion of the two levels of control women lose much of the
happiness that would come to them from the direct control exercised over
them by men, on the erotic level. Into the love episode egoistic-social
impulses, being the uninvited guest at a feast, only intrude. Women’s
sphere of active control is limited, on all rational grounds, to the work
in the world which they choose for themselves apart from being wives.

It is equally true, too, that if the erotic life is to be rationally
developed in both partners the husband will have to keep carefully
separated the egoistic-social in his life from the erotic. There is much
talk about the ability of a woman to be a mother, which tacitly implies
being a housewife, and at the same time to be a professional woman or to
do anything whatever of an egoistic-social nature outside of her home.

The idea never seems to have occurred to anybody that in an equitable
marriage at least, not to mention an ideal one, the husband has any part
to play in the construction of that spiritual situation which should
constitute the home. The father really has as vital a part to play in the
home as the mother. There is no perfect home that does not contain these
two absolutely equally unifying factors. “What is home without a father?”
is quite as pertinent a question as the other trite one.

This does not for a moment imply that the duties of the father and the
mother in the material home should be the same. This would give only a
literal verbal significance to the statement that a man’s duty is quite
as much toward his home as is a woman’s. If we were simply using words
that sounded reasonable we might as well repeat the oft expressed and
seemingly perfectly balanced retort of woman to her husband: “If I have
to _bear_ the child, why on earth shouldn’t _you_ care for it?”

§ 203

To illustrate with a concrete example the utter helplessness of some of
the finest women, the following excerpt is made, with his permission,
from a letter received by Dr. Robie:

“The man whom I finally married came into my life as an intellectual
wonder. I marvelled at his knowledge and his worldly poise.... Whenever I
pleaded for consideration, kindness, he would say: ‘Haven’t you a home,
clothes, money, a baby? What more do you want?’ or ‘Haven’t I told you
once that I love you? Can’t you take that for granted?’

“No gentleness, no petting, just hardness and the greatest conceit over
his own personality and ability.

“I found at dances that other men could thrill me, and one man in
particular.... He never knew it.

“I got the reputation of being a perfect mother, and a beauty, and my
spirit never has been broken; but my faith is broken. My love is as dead
as last year’s leaves; and I scorn men who stop being lovers on their
wedding night.

“Health, enthusiasm, good nature, big sense of humour, beauty, ideal
birth inheritance, magnetism, yes, and passion—for I am not cold, but
_very_ impulsive and affectionate—all this lost to the right man, and the
wrong one quite content, apparently, in his worldly successes, and with
a cultured wife who does not bother him, and keeps his noisy brood of
children at a distance.

“This comes from a bursting heart. It is true I am a success as a mother;
and the world thinks I am in all ways. Yet that greatest of all things,
LOVE, is denied me.”

§ 204

The father’s part in the home is something, however, far more
hypersomatic than that, more spiritual. The truly husbanded wife will
make the egoistic-social aspects of home-keeping so much her own business
that she will tend to appropriate more than she should really have. And
the thoughtless man will let her and wonder why she is tired and cross.

If rugs have to be beaten and windows washed, and there is no money to
hire a man to do it, the wife will do it, frequently, and the husband,
who does not husband his wife’s health and beauty will let her. And so
on up the egoistic-social scale till we reach the millionaire who might
do certain things for his wife much more acceptably than hirelings, but
dissociates himself more and more from her.

The management of the children is really an egoistic-social affair, in
which some men are much better able to plan, and execute plans than
are most women. The management of very young children in the home is
something that no _paterfamilias_ can afford to leave entirely to women.
This is by all odds the most important part of the child’s life.

It does not mean that the banker or politician should spend hour after
hour in the nursery, though, indeed, he should know pretty well what
goes on there. The nature of the personal contacts the child gets in
the nursery is a determining factor in many cases, in the way in which
he will later behave in his marital existence. In the nursery, meaning
by that any locality where the child spends most of his playtime and
sleeping time, he gets the experiences from which later he may develop
neuroses, phobias, and other emotional disorders. He forms there usually
his mother-imago, for even if he belongs to the class of children who
never see their own mothers except on the rarest occasions, he will form
his mother ideal from his hired nurse, or from any other woman with whom
he comes into close contact.

Here then, the egoistic-social trends of the parents play an important
rôle in determining the erotic life of the child. The egoistic-social
pressure exerted on one or both parents withdraws them from their
children, and partly or wholly orphans them. Many a child’s father is no
more personal than a checking bank.

Not only, therefore, does the absorption of the parents by
egoistic-social trends diminish the chances of their own erotic
development as husband and wife, a development that takes time, energy
and imagination, but it deprives their children of the proper environment
in which to develop the germs of future wholesome erotism.

Parents and children should spend a certain amount of time in each
other’s company during which they do nothing but love each other all
around and have a jolly good time together. It is just as important
for the parents to banish egoistic-social claims for short periods and
actually loaf and fool around with the children as it is for the children
to have a taste of adult idling company. Such, for example, is a real
picnic or camping trip or ocean voyage, or any situation that brings
parents and children together.

§ 205

It is important, too, for every woman to keep clearly separated in her
mind and in her action the two levels, egoistic-social and erotic. Only
then is she in a satisfactory position to become a wife in a higher sense
than that in which most women are wives, and her becoming a mother need
interfere in no way with her remaining a wife to her husband.

It is therefore to the advantage of man to realize that, however much he
may value his wife’s clear intuition in egoistic-social matters, he is
to be sure about their utter exclusion from matters purely erotic. A man
can never fall in love with a conventionally so-called unattractive woman
solely because she has a good business head. If any man should think
so, he would find, on closer analysis, that, if he was really in love,
his motive was truly erotic. If he cannot find any really erotic factor
in his attitude toward her, his union with her can never be a complete

He has confused the two levels. He cannot love her _because_ she can
manage a library or a bond broker’s office or an insurance agency, any
more than he can love her really because she knows how to make fudge. He
may be attracted by the fudge. He is undoubtedly attracted unconsciously
by other factors truly erotic in her character. Otherwise he would be
more prudent to marry the fudge rather than the girl.

Similarly if the woman thinks she attracts by her business or culinary
ability she is confusing levels. There are some women who unfortunately,
because erroneously, believe they have little or no erotic attraction.
Plain in face, not well formed, possibly under-weight, complexions not
clear, they think that by sedulously following egoistic-social trends
they can make an appeal to other people and particularly to men. They
fail to see that these trends have hardly anything to do with love,
that, once they love, their form improves, that the homeliest face,
once lighted by the fire of love, has a beauty all its own, pure and

The same is true of unloving, unillumined, unfired men. Judging
erroneously from a confusion of the two levels, they fail to see not only
that erotic trends are the strongest and most universal in the world, but
that being the fundamentally vital trends they are almost inexhaustible
and provide the untapped energy which the egoistic-social thinking of
these diffident men makes them fear to draw upon.

The mathematical exactness of the comparison of men on the
egoistic-social level makes many a man think his erotic impulses are
similarly inferior. He should ponder well upon the prodigality of nature,
remembering that he, too, is part of nature.

§ 206

Unrestrained nature is most prodigal. The thousands of ova and millions
of spermatozoa produced in every woman and man show that the analogy is
false that is drawn between the human body and a mere container like a
basket. Anything with life cannot be exhausted until life has gone, and
yet through asceticism the secretions can be rendered great or small
or almost non-existent. Men can make eunuchs of themselves by force of
will, yet their egoistic-social performances are not improved but rather
impoverished by the process.

Men should train themselves to produce, which consists in being lavish of
self in every manner. The richest are those who give most. The miser is
the poorest man in the world and the most miserable.

Fear of giving self is the fear of losing self. What most men fear if
they love their wives too much is that they will impoverish themselves
and enrich their wives, thus making their wives contemptuous of their
resultant poverty. But the poorest man or woman is the one who has not
begun to love, and many are such even in the married state.

And they begin to enrich themselves even more than each other, when they
give each to other the uttermost that is in them.

Giving is the only thing that produces fertility of giving. It is
tapping the inexhaustible, the only way in which to unite oneself to the
infinite. Withholding is closing up the gate to universal strength and

Control is not annihilation or denial. It is direction of an endless
stream of energy. If the energy is not delivered it cannot be directed
and therefore cannot be controlled.

The tragedy of present-day marital life lies in the deception men
practise on themselves by believing that annihilation is a kind of

The facts of the intimate marital relations of most couples are too
unlovely to be welcomed by most people, but in order to progress it is
necessary to face them.

In the new marriage the husband, therefore, will relinquish certain of
the egoistic-social spheres of action and will confine his attention
solely to those most closely associated with the erotic. He will assume
the responsibility for these.

§ 207

Trial marriage is little more than a method of testing man’s control in
the erotic sphere. It implies that if a man is found lacking in control
over one woman, he may be tried with another, in the hope that with the
second up to the _n_th he may find a woman whom he can control. But as
stated elsewhere in this book the probability of an uncontrolled man’s
acquiring control by a superficial trial and error method is almost nil.

Science has not a word to say against permanent marriage if the pair are
really compatible. What constitutes compatibility, however, is much more
a mental attitude on the part of the husband. A man that thinks he has
to have a special, peculiar type of woman for a wife, or because of a
bringing up in an excessively romantic family thinks there is only one
woman in the world, specially born for him, who alone can make him happy
in marriage, or who thinks he has found her when he has fallen in love
at first sight, assumes no responsibility for his own happiness, but
fatalistically waits for destiny to provide him with a suitable spouse.

“Spouse” is derived from Latin _spondeo_ which is at the root of the
word _response_, and means “to promise solemnly.” This refers to what the
person confidently expects to _get_, not himself contribute to the union.
But it has been clear to the seers of all ages that giving is the only
true getting.

On the basis of giving, almost any woman can be made a wife, but never in
the sense of spouse if it has its ancient meaning of a person bound to
give something.

If a young man is given the proper training in the right way, which shows
him that the most intensely physical contacts are emotionally worthless
without the spiritual factor in the truly erotic, and that the intimacies
of marital life are far more determined by hypersomatic (spiritual) facts
than by physical ones, that he has the privilege of making his married
life as romantic as he wishes or can leave it quite prosaic and dull; if
he knows this, even a provisional marriage entered into with a woman not
positively distasteful to him can be made a triumphant success.

The proviso, however, will be made by most people that there must be an
original rapport between the two. It is the unequivocal position of this
book, on the contrary, that the rapport, even if it never existed, can be
created by the husband, by means of his own conscious creative power.

§ 208

This implies neither that the rapport is solely a physical one nor that
it is based on solely physical factors. Nor does it imply that a perfect
marital love that has all the qualities of the romantic may not, by
the proper behaviour on the husband’s part, be progressively developed
as the years pass. Indeed, the fully matured love of at least a quarter
of a century’s duration is the only marital love that has any claim
to be called romantic. In the young, love is not romantic but may be
spectacular, in its expression, or in the egoistic-social circumstances
which surround it, but the only perfect love of a man and a woman is the
one that has the growth of years.

If a man knowing the true technique which is more spiritual (more
hypersomatic) than physical in every instance, though impossible without
the complete combination of physical and spiritual, chooses any woman
whatever of his own free will, and uses with her the real love technique
of word and deed, he cannot fail to find in her his erotic complement, if
she be really a woman.

The choice, it is admitted, is the work largely of his unconscious. The
unconscious is an absolutely accurate registering apparatus; and as such
is the real foundation of the choice of a mate.

But it should not for a moment be forgotten that the unconscious
mechanisms that present this woman as more attractive than that to a man
are only the foundation of the edifice of his marital love which it is
his triumph to build with his own hands.

And it should equally well be remembered that the erotic control is
his, and will remain his, if the marriage is to prove happy; also that
the erotic control is more spiritual than physical, though it can never
endure without the physical.

§ 209

The duty of marriage is the procreation of healthy children. The
privilege and pleasure of marriage is what Havelock Ellis has called the
play side of love.

If the husband does not secure and by a superior knowledge of love insist
on securing in his wife this essential of human marriage, his marriage is
only legal, only social, and has no love instinct back of it. It is not
an erotic union. Erotic unions are the only healthy ones.

Erotic unions are the only healthy ones not merely in the sense of
health-giving to the partners, but also in the sense of having themselves
a healthy growth in progressively embracing all human activities, in
which the partners are concerned in egoistic and social lines, embracing
them in such a way that the love instinct increases its control over the
ego instinct. This increase is the real object of a love marriage, not
increase of wealth, honour, distinction, and experience of the world but
increase of the dominance of love over self.

§ 210

Possibly this dependence of the woman on the man to unfold her accounts
for man’s instinctive desire to marry a virgin. Unconsciously he may
imagine that to make her most his own, she should have been influenced
erotically by no other man.

Whether or not the future development of the general attitude toward
marriage will include an insistence on the woman’s being a virgin when
she enters the marital state, there are still some considerations
concerning both the physical and the psychical condition of virginity,
both of men and of women, that are pertinent today, and that seem
advisable to take up at this point.

§ 211

The study of the unconscious throws an important sidelight upon the
matter of the termination of physical virginity of women.

It has been clearly shown that this termination when, as is frequently
the case, it is accompanied by sudden and severe pain on the rupture
of the hymen, is the cause of a revulsion of feeling on the woman’s
part, utterly incommensurate with the actual intensity and duration
of the pain, a feeling also of which she never is, and possibly never
becomes, directly conscious; but, if the pain is caused by the action
of the husband, it is the cause of a resentment which, in the wife’s
unconscious, is ever after associated with her husband.

From this point of view it would seem more felicitous if that unconscious
association of ideas could be made in her mind with some other man, e.g.,
the family doctor, if it is an inevitable association and absolutely
uncontrollable by the wife, as all deeply unconscious mental processes
are. It would seem that a man would profit by not being the particular
man associated in his wife’s unconscious with a painful incident that
cuts so deep. This applies to the average uninstructed man but not to
the adept or even inexperienced man who is willing and able to act
intelligently and profit by the knowledge now available about how to
avoid this one of the many mischances that may occur in the case of the
virgin episode.

This phenomenon of the unconscious resentment due to the forcible and
painful termination of merely physical virginity is recognized in the
frequently happy second married life of women who have lost their first
husbands, and in the customs of some savage tribes in which no woman
becomes a wife until she has been deflowered by the official appointed by
the tribe for that special purpose.

The inference from these facts is not necessarily that a man will be more
happy with a wife who comes to him “impure” or widowed; though this may
be the case. The inference is on the other hand that the man, if he knows
enough, will be able in the very first love episode so to act that the
bride inflicts any necessary pain on herself, and not he on her; making
all the difference in the world to her, because in this case, never,
even in her own unconscious, can she lay up against her husband this
cause of resentment. The technically instructed husband thus gains an
initial prestige with his wife and with her unconscious, which enormously
increases his erotic control of her emotions—the _sine qua non_ of a
felicitous marriage, that essential condition for fully functioning adult
human life.

§ 212

Women are unable to control or direct their own development in the
erotic sphere up to the point of greatest exaltation. They are perforce
required to be developed by men. But, in from fifty to seventy per
cent of marriages, men are too uninterested or too ignorant to develop
their wives’ erotism to this point, and, of course, to develop their own
erotism to the necessary degree of self-control whereby they can secure
the total erotic relaxation of their wives.

So that when we say that men are more virginal than women we imply a
responsibility on the husband’s part, and none whatever on the wife’s
part, for the proper erotic development which alone constitutes the basis
of a permanent monogamy.

That is the reason for saying that in the love episode control is the
husband’s organically, fundamentally, biologically. The husband reader
of this book should ask himself whether he has exercised the adequate
amount of control in the erotic sphere. Has he left his wife, the mother
of his children, in the condition of being psychically a virgin? If he
has, he must realize that he, too, is in a sense, himself a virgin. This
signifies primarily that because his wife’s erotism is left undeveloped,
his own is too. Undeveloped erotism is no secure bond, no perfect
assurance, of a true monogamy.

He will need to take the matter into his own hands and truly marry his
wife by means of fully developing his own and her erotism. This need of
marrying one’s own wife is the greatest need of the present day. It can
be fulfilled only by more knowledge and more (truly erotic) passion on
the part of the husband.

The husband, therefore, who has not in this sense married his own wife,
is illogical in thinking that there is any justice or beauty or poetry or
romance in any attempted affiliation, liaison or other intimate relation
with any other woman. On the other hand, the husband who has married his
wife in this sense, will neither seek nor need the intimacy of any other
woman than his wife.

The phantasied happiness with any other woman rests solely on the thought
that the erotic development of the other would be easier for him, or that
it would be unnecessary. If it is unnecessary, it has been accomplished
by some other man; for true mutual erotic relations are not attained by
a woman alone or by two women, man being the only developer of woman’s

He may think indeed that some extra-marital woman actually loves him,
and that his wife does not. This may be true, if he is fully developed
himself, has made sincere attempts for years to develop his wife and, in
spite of his own best thought and advice of erotologists, has found that
she is definitely ineducable. This is an exceedingly rare case.

It may _appear_ that the extra-marital woman loves him, and that he loves
her; but the experience of many centuries has shown that, except in the
rarest of instances, the woman is ignorant of her own true feelings and
that the attempt on the man’s part to develop her erotically would be a

If his own desire for the extra-marital woman is conditioned, as it so
often is, on the mentally autoerotic nature of his own satisfactions,
which his lack of success with his wife has, in most cases, amply proved,
his success in the adulterous union is not likely to be any greater. He
will be most likely to expect an easier conquest in the extra-marital
liaison than in the marital relation. His going from the marital one to
one fancied easier is an evidence of his mental autoerotism.

§ 213

In conclusion it may be said that the feeling on the part of any critic
of modern civilization that marriage has been a failure applies only to
the facts of the imperfect carrying out of the ideal of monogamy. We
may remind such critics that, like Christianity, monogamy (in the sense
of hologamy or the total physical and psychical fusion of man and wife)
cannot be called a failure, because in the vast majority of persons,
it simply _has not been given a fair trial_. External, conscious,
superficial fidelity is not true hologamy any more than lip service is
Christianity; and, as a whole, civilized peoples have not yet succeeded
in attaining faith either in the one or in the other.



§ 214

This chapter is written; but, because of the egoistic-social legislation
of fifty years ago, cannot be printed.

While it is lawful to inform readers that abortion is a crime and in
every way unnatural, the practice of —— and ——, and the use of ——, ——,
——, etc., none of which in any sense causes the death of that which has
begun to live, as is the case in abortion, cannot by law be described.

While it has been conclusively proved that in countries like Holland
where birth control is not only legalized but made a matter of public
instruction, the birth rate declines, _but_ the death rate declines
_still more_, legislators in this country have apparently gone on the
principle that more unintelligent voters were more desirable than fewer
intelligent voters. For where the death rate, due to birth control,
is still less than the birth rate the result is a great increase in
intelligence as well as eventually in population.


[1] One of the questions of a questionnaire submitted to prominent
neurologists, and published in _Mental Hygiene_ (Oct., 1920) was the
following: “Do you consider that absolute continence is always to
be insisted upon, or may it be taught that under certain conditions
intercourse in the unmarried is harmless or beneficial?”

To this question A. A. Brill of New York gave the following answer:
“Years ago I encouraged intercourse in some neurotics who were constantly
worrying about sex. I soon found out that it had not benefited them. The
same factors which produced the original conflicts continued to disturb
them. Now I remove their conflicts by analysis, and then they need no
advice. I have known a number of cases who have successfully abstained
from two to three years following analysis.”

[2] Used in technical sense explained in § 141.

[3] BERMAN: _The Glands Regulating Personality_, N. Y., 1921, p. 96.

[4] _Erotism_ is defined in the dictionaries as a medical word meaning
“abnormal sexual desire.” But that is simply because the doctors got hold
of it first. There is no Greek word _erotism_ nor yet _eroticism_, but
“erotism” has resulted from being the common element in autoerotism and
allerotism and being shorter than eroticism was adopted by the present
writer to name the highest type of the combination of body and soul
mating. He never suspected till he looked up the word that it had a bad
sense in the minds of others. (See also p. 82.)

[5] As will appear in the following chapters (especially § 43),
egoistic-social impulses or instincts are those which include the trends
toward self-maintenance and self-magnification—practically all impulses
that are not truly erotic.

[6] The “playmate” is a new term for an old thing, which does not,
however, imply that present conditions are exactly the same as those of
Sheridan’s day who, in _The School for Scandal_, makes Lady Teazle say:
“You know I admit you as a lover no farther than fashion sanctions,” to
which Joseph Surface replies: “True—a mere Platonic cicisbeo, what every
wife is entitled to.” And the Century Dictionary defines _cicisbeo_ as
“In Italy, since the 17th century, the name given to a professed gallant
and attendant of a married woman; one who dangles about women,” and shows
that the word is derived from _chiche_, little, and _beau_.

“Tame cats” and “house friends” are also names given today, by these
discontented women, to the persons who engage in this form of cicisbeism.

[7] Havelock Ellis, who coined the word autoerotism, defines it as
follows (_Studies in the Psychology of Sex_, Vol. I, page 161): “By
‘autoerotism’ I mean the phenomena of spontaneous sexual emotion
generated in the absence of an external stimulus proceeding, directly or
indirectly, from another person.” The present writer calls autoerotic
those husbands who, in the love episode, secure their own erotic acme, in
which their sexual, if not their erotic, tension is relaxed; but either
do not know or do not care whether their wives reach a corresponding
relaxation. The opposite of autoerotism is allerotism, where the husband
places on the wife’s erotic relaxation a value at least equal to that
which he places on his own.

[8] Hologamy, however (see §§ 187 to 198), depends on a direct and not an
alternating current.

[9] See § 43.

[10] Derived ultimately from _cano_, sing or utter in impassioned tone
and rhythm. Women are more erotically impressed by men’s singing than men
are by women’s.

[11] In § 44.

[12] See § 65.

[13] Further discussed in §§ 100-106.

[14] For a more detailed explanation of mother imago, see the chapter on
Hologamy and Prostitution.

[15] Stekel, W., in _The Homosexual Neurosis_ (Boston, 1922) says: “The
evil effects produced upon the child witnessing marital bickerings,
the household inspiration it receives with regard to judgment-feelings
about women and men, the decisive manner in which parents affect it
when they transfer their conflicts on the child—these capital facts the
life histories of homosexuals given above illustrate very clearly for
anyone willing to look squarely at the truth. We do not yet appreciate
how careful we must be in our relations with the children. Our educators
are still guilty of a serious blunder when they conceive their duty to
be to instil goodness in the child through the instrumentality of fear.
There are only two educational levers: one’s own example and—love. The
healthiest children come from happy marriages. It is love that determines
whether a marriage shall be a happy one and whether the offspring will
be healthy or weak. The unconscious sexual instinct manifesting itself
in love is the guide for the regeneration of the human race. Social
conditions favouring early love marriages are the only social reform to
which I look for results.” (Page 316.)

[16] _The Glands Regulating Personality_, Macmillan, 1921.

[17] See § 187.

[18] §§ 128-169.

[19] Dr. Alice B. Stockham, _Karezza: Ethics of Marriage_, N. Y., 1896.
She recommends that both husband and wife refrain from the erotic acme.
“During a lengthy period of perfect control, the whole being of each is
merged into the other, and an exquisite exaltation experienced. This
may be accompanied by a quiet motion, entirely under subordination of
the will, so that the thrill of passion may not go beyond a pleasurable
exchange.... With abundant time and mutual reciprocity the interchange
becomes satisfactory and complete, without emission or crisis. In the
course of an hour the physical tension subsides, the spiritual exaltation
increases and not uncommonly visions of a transcendent life are seen and
consciousness of new powers experienced.” (Page 25.) She suggests that
such episodes should take place from two weeks to three months apart,
and should be the only type of love episode except where procreation is

[20] _Beiträge zur Psychologie des Liebeslebens._ Psychoanalytische
Jahrbuch (1910).

[21] Harrow: _Glands in Health and Disease_, N. Y., 1922, p. 105.

[22] For a discussion of masochism see §§ 177, 180.

[23] For a discussion of the Mother-Imago see the chapter on Prostitution.

[24] “When we say that for health any individual requires an adequate
sexual outlet, it must be understood that this outlet may be secured in
a great number of different ways. A person may be having regular and
frequent sexual intercourse (excessive intercourse, in fact) without this
affording him an adequate outlet, or preventing his libido from becoming
dammed up.”—FRINK: _Morbid Fears and Compulsions_, p. 268.

[25] LOMBROSO and FERRERO: ap. ELLIS, op. cit., VI, 415.

[26] § 102.

[27] STEKEL, W.: _The Homosexual Neurosis_, Boston, 1922, p. 117.


    Acme, § 26, p. 44; § 28, p. 48; § 68, p. 103; § 75, p. 110; § 76,
      p. 111; § 81, p. 121; § 89, p. 128; § 96, p. 136; § 97, p. 137;
      § 101, p. 141; § 110, p. 151; § 111, p. 153; § 121, p. 165;
      § 139, p. 193; § 144, p. 197; § 146, p. 202; § 157, p. 221;
      § 199, p. 277

    Adult, § 48, p. 77

    Affection, § 182, p. 259; § 188, p. 260

    All, a woman’s, §§ 82-85, pp. 123-125; § 89, p. 128

    Analogy, § 57, p. 91

    Anesthesia, § 8, p. 12; § 20, p. 31; § 73, p. 108; § 136, p. 187;
      § 140, p. 193; § 141, p. 195; § 149, p. 206; § 163, p. 228;
      § 181, p. 248; § 199, p. 276

    Annihilation, § 132, p. 182

    Apperception, § 195, p. 271

    Art of Love, § 74, p. 109

    Asceticism, § 33, p. 56; § 42, p. 66

    Athletic _vs._ Sedentary, § 32, p. 53

    Autoerotism, § 20, p. 31; § 21, p. 33; § 23, p. 37; § 27, p. 46;
      § 28, p. 48; § 48, p. 77; § 112, p. 154; § 115, p. 157;
      § 116, p. 159; § 133, p. 183; § 145, p. 198; § 153, p. 214;
      § 155, p. 217

    Autosuggestion, § 28, p. 48; § 30, p. 51; § 116, p. 159

    Bennett, Arnold, § 18, p. 26

    Berman, § 10, p. 13

    Binary, § 66, p. 100; § 95, p. 135; § 159, p. 224

    Birth Control, § 214, p. 298

    Brill, A. A., § 6, p. 7

    Charity, § 3, p. 3

    Charm, § 17, p. 24; § 18, p. 26; § 73, p. 108

    Cicisbeo, § 12, p. 18

    Clandestine relations, § 49, p. 78; § 71, p. 105

    Coldness (see _Frigidity_.)

    Combinations of conscious and unconscious passion, § 189, p. 262

    Comparison, § 44, p. 68

    Companionship, § 46, p. 73; § 158, p. 222; § 159, p. 224

    Compensation, § 156, p. 219

    Completeness of Life, § 47, p. 75

    Compulsion to repeat, § 146, p. 279

    Conflict, § 6, p. 7; § 147, p. 203; § 180, p. 247; § 187, p. 259

    Confusion of erotic and egoistic-social, § 40, p. 64; § 135, p. 186;
      § 137, p. 190

    Continence, Male, § 100, p. 140

    Control, § 5, p. 6; § 23, p. 37; § 26, p. 44; §§ 28-30, pp. 48-51;
      § 32, p. 53; § 67, p. 102; § 68, p. 103; § 100, p. 140; § 114, p. 155;
      §§ 128-169, pp. 175-234; § 174, p. 240

    Control, woman’s, § 67, p. 102; § 68, p. 103; § 133, p. 183

    Coué, § 116, p. 159

    Creating, § 84, p. 124

    Demi-human, § 31, p. 52; § 125, p. 169

    Despair, § 136, p. 187

    Disagreements, § 25, p. 43

    Disappointments, § 136, p. 187; § 201, p. 279

    Discontent, § 15, p. 22

    Dissembling, § 150, p. 209; § 152, p. 212

    Dominating, § 5, p. 6; § 107, p. 148

    Double Standard, § 44, p. 69; § 199, p. 276

    Drouet, Mlle., § 6, p. 7; § 192, p. 268

    Drama, Love, § 69, p. 104; § 74, p. 109; § 87, p. 126

    Duty, § 50, p. 82

    Education, § 152, p. 212

    Egoistic-social, § 17, p. 24; § 25, p. 42; §§ 43-45, pp. 67-71;
      § 50, p. 82; § 51, p. 83; § 171, p. 237; § 191, p. 264;
      § 206, p. 287

    Ellis, § 37, p. 60; § 84, p. 125; § 90, p. 130; § 99, p. 139;
      § 128, p. 175; § 181, p. 248; § 183, p. 250

    Embarrassment, § 70, p. 105; § 153, p. 214

    Emotional catharsis, § 24, p. 39. (See _Acme_.)

    Emotions, § 1, p. 1; § 24, p. 39; §§ 33-42, pp. 56-65; § 94, p. 133;
      § 193, p. 268; § 197, p. 273

    Environment, mental, § 145, p. 200

    Erotic, § 10, p. 13; § 25, p. 42; § 33, p. 56; § 36, p. 59;
      § 45, p. 71; § 46, p. 73; § 48, p. 77; § 49, p. 78; § 51, p. 83;
      § 109, p. 151; § 147, p. 203; § 180, p. 247; § 187, p. 259;
      § 191, p. 264

    Erotic, superiority of, § 63, p. 97

    Erotism, § 10, p. 14

    Erotologist, § 65, p. 99; § 107, p. 148; § 112, p. 154

    Estrus, § 98, p. 138

    Evolution, § 128, p. 175; § 190, p. 263

    Fakirs, § 117, p. 160

    Fate, § 15, p. 22; § 154, p. 216; § 208, p. 290

    Father, § 204, p. 284

    Fears, § 149, p. 206

    Femininity, § 16, p. 23; § 27, p. 46; § 66, p. 100; § 72, p. 107;
      § 107, p. 148

    Fetishism, § 119, p. 162; § 120, p. 163; § 126, p. 170

    Fickleness, § 41, p. 64

    Freud, § 67, p. 102; § 102, p. 142; § 179, p. 246; § 181, p. 248;
      § 183, p. 250

    Frigidity, § 136, p. 187; § 199, p. 276

    Frink, H. W., § 33, p. 56; § 52, p. 85; § 147, p. 203

    Fusion, § 56, p. 91; § 76, p. 111; § 88, p. 128; § 114, p. 155

    Gallichan, W. M., § 111, p. 153

    Giving, § 23, p. 37; § 24, p. 39; § 154, p. 216

    Glands, § 10, p. 13; § 63, p. 97; § 105, p. 145

    Gonad, § 80, p. 120; § 88, p. 128

    Habit, § 42, p. 66

    Hallucination, § 157, p. 221; § 161, p. 225

    Harrow, B., § 105, p. 145

    Haste, § 67, p. 102; § 134, p. 184; § 147, p. 203; § 148, p. 205;
      § 150, p. 209

    Hologamy, § 19, p. 29; § 88, p. 128; § 95, p. 135; § 187, p. 259

    Home, § 15, p. 22; § 202, p. 280

    Homosexuality, § 184, p. 251

    Honeymoon, § 22, p. 35; § 23, p. 37; § 112, p. 154; § 136, p. 187

    Hutchinson, § 15, p. 22

    Hypersomatic, § 29, p. 49; § 32, p. 53; § 145, p. 198; § 166, p. 231;
      § 190, p. 263

    Hyposomatic, § 29, p. 49; § 32, p. 53

    Identification, § 80, p. 118; § 171, p. 237

    Ignorance, § 80, p. 118; § 98, p. 138

    Imagination, § 116, p. 159; § 164, p. 229; § 165, p. 231;
      § 166, p. 231; § 167, p. 232

    Individuality, § 128, p. 175

    Infantility, § 27, p. 46; § 60, p. 94; § 155, p. 217

    Infidelity, § 160, p. 224

    Insight, erotic, § 199, p. 276; § 200, p. 277

    Instinct, §§ 42-63, pp. 66-97; § 103, p. 144; § 120, p. 163;
      § 199, p. 276

    Islet, § 79, p. 113; § 80, p. 118

    James, W., § 33, p. 56

    Jealousy, § 179, p. 246; § 183, p. 250; § 185, p. 253; § 186, p. 255

    Juan, Don, § 85, p. 125

    Jus primæ noctis, § 85, p. 125

    Karezza, §§ 100-106, pp. 140-146; § 116, p. 159

    Krafft-Ebing, § 177, p. 243

    Law of Reversed Effort, § 116, p. 159

    Lombroso, § 150, p. 209

    Loneliness, § 156, p. 219

    Love, § 33, p. 56; § 46, p. 73; § 64, p. 98; § 75, p. 110;
      § 94, p. 133; § 128, p. 175

    Love at first sight, § 19, p. 29; § 47, p. 75

    Love Drama, § 69, p. 104; § 74, p. 109; § 87, p. 126

    Love Episode, § 10, p. 13; § 26, p. 44; § 74, p. 109; § 75, p. 110;
      § 84, p. 124; § 97, p. 137; § 146, p. 201; § 212, p. 294

    Love Impulse, § 5, p. 6; § 132, p. 182

    Love Pattern, § 30, p. 51; § 53, p. 87

    Man’s _vs._ Woman’s egoistic-social and erotic urge, § 35, p. 59

    Marriage a lottery, § 66, p. 100; § 128, p. 175; § 184, p. 257

    Marriage not to be postponed, § 173, p. 240

    Marriage, run down, § 19, p. 29; § 174, p. 241

    Marriage, Happy, § 115, p. 157

    Masculinity, § 16, p. 23; § 27, p. 46; § 60, p. 94; § 66, p. 100

    Masochism, § 108, p. 149; § 177, p. 243; § 180, p. 247

    Mastery, § 200, p. 277

    Meisel-Hess, G., § 4, p. 4; § 6, p. 7; § 14, p. 21

    Mental _vs._ physical, § 29, p. 49

    Metonymy, § 161, p. 225

    Monogamy, § 213, p. 297

    Mother imago, § 27, p. 46; § 64, p. 98; § 110, p. 151; § 114, p. 155;
      § 134, p. 184; § 193, p. 268

    Mountain-climbing allegory, §§ 122-127, pp. 165-171

    Mutuality, §§ 21-25, pp. 33-42

    Mystery, § 31, p. 33; § 121, p. 165; § 154, p. 216

    Negativism, § 23, p. 37; § 59, p. 93; § 60, p. 94; § 151, p. 211

    Next best thing, § 130, p. 179

    Observation, § 28, p. 48; § 97, p. 137

    Ocean shore, § 81, p. 121

    O’Higgins, H., § 119, p. 162

    Oneida Community, § 100, p. 140; § 114, p. 155

    Over-sexed woman, § 149, p. 206; § 186, p. 258

    Parents, § 52, p. 85; § 53, p. 87; § 54, p. 89

    Passion, § 33, p. 56; § 49, p. 78; § 196, p. 272; § 203, p. 283;
      § 207, p. 289

    Passive, § 27, p. 46; § 33, p. 56

    Patterns, § 11, p. 16; §§ 31-32, pp. 52-55; § 53, p. 87;
      § 117, p. 160; § 118, p. 161; § 168, p. 233; § 170, p. 236;
      § 199, p. 276

    Pepys, § 182, p. 249

    Perverse, § 7, p. 11

    Phantasy, § 86, p. 126; § 139, p. 193; § 146, p. 201; § 153, p. 214;
      § 157, p. 221; § 162, p. 226

    Phobia, § 38, p. 61

    Physical _vs._ mental, § 29, p. 49; § 170, p. 236

    Plato, § 46, p. 73

    Playmate, § 12, p. 18; § 27, p. 46

    Plurality of women, § 191, p. 264

    Polyandry, unconscious, § 176, p. 242

    Polygamy, § 20, p. 31

    Polymorphous-perverse, § 7, p. 11

    Preparation of wife, §§ 97-99, pp. 137-139

    Problems, sex, § 11, p. 16

    Prodigality of Nature, § 206, p. 287

    Prohibition, § 197, p. 273

    Prostitute, § 4, p. 4; § 67, p. 102; § 150, p. 209

    Prostitution, § 4, p. 4; § 54, p. 89; §§ 197-198, pp. 273-274

    Psychic erotism, § 109, p. 151

    Psychoanalysis, § 6, p. 7; § 31, p. 52; § 52, p. 85; § 184, p. 251

    Rapport, § 99, p. 139; § 166, p. 231; § 207, p. 289

    Rationalization, § 25, p. 42; § 82, p. 123

    Reassociation, § 38, p. 61; § 39, p. 62; § 41, p. 64

    Relaxation, § 96, p. 136; § 99, p. 139; § 192, p. 267

    Repression, § 6, p. 7; § 35, p. 59; § 37, p. 60; § 128, p. 175;
      § 144, p. 197; § 162, p. 226; § 197, p. 273

    Resentment, § 136, p. 187

    Resistance, § 157, p. 221; § 159, p. 222

    Responsibility, § 45, p. 71; § 194, p. 269

    Restlessness, § 13, p. 19

    Right of woman, § 89, p. 128; § 90, p. 130; § 92, p. 132; § 93, p. 133

    Robie, Dr. W. F., § 65, p. 100

    Robinson, J. H., § 1, p. 2

    Romantic, § 14, p. 21; § 15, p. 22

    Sacrifice, § 177, p. 243; § 180, p. 247

    Satisfaction, § 2, p. 2; § 16, p. 23; § 26, p. 44; § 27, p. 46;
      § 72, p. 107

    Science, § 110, p. 151

    Sea and rocks, § 81, p. 121

    “Secret Places of the Heart,” § 78, p. 113

    Sex Inhibition, § 137, p. 190; § 178, p. 245

    Sex life, normal, § 9, p. 12; § 11, p. 16; § 77, p. 112

    Sex talk, § 11, p. 16

    Shaw, G. B., § 156, p. 219

    Shrew, § 20, p. 31

    Simultaneity, § 98, p. 138; §§ 111-113, pp. 153-155

    Single standard, § 199, p. 276

    Solitary vice of husbands, § 155, p. 218

    Soma, § 29, p. 49

    Splitting of libido, § 189, p. 262

    Spouse, § 207, p. 289

    Steinach, § 105, p. 145

    Stekel, W., § 54, p. 89; § 184, p. 251

    Stoics, § 33, p. 56

    Strength, § 59, p. 93; § 60, p. 94; § 80, p. 118

    Study (see _Observation_)

    Sublimation, § 104, p. 145

    Succession plan, § 112, p. 154; § 113, p. 155; § 115, p. 157;
      § 118, p. 161

    Suggestion, § 166, p. 231

    Supremity of male control, § 142, p. 195

    Surprise, § 33, p. 56; § 121, p. 165

    Surprise of married, p. 15

    Synthesis, § 7, p. 11; § 91, p. 131

    Talion, § 152, p. 212

    Taming of the Shrew, § 20, p. 31

    Tension, erotic, § 91, p. 131

    Testing, § 72, p. 107; § 114, p. 155; § 121, p. 165; § 136, p. 187;
      § 137, p. 190; § 150, p. 209; § 151, p. 211; § 152, p. 212;
      § 160, p. 224

    Thesis, § 144, p. 197

    Trial marriage, § 41, p. 64; § 207, p. 289

    Tumescence, § 81, p. 121; § 91, p. 131

    Unconscious affection, § 187, p. 259

    Unconscious factor, § 65, p. 99; § 66, p. 100; § 192, p. 267

    Unconscious love, § 193, p. 268; § 206, p. 287; § 207, p. 289;
      § 208, p. 290

    Unhappy marriage, §§ 170-186, pp. 236-258

    Unity, § 190, p. 263

    Variety, § 87, p. 126; § 198, p. 274

    Virginity, § 84, p. 124; § 210, p. 292; § 211, p. 293

    Virility, § 17, p. 24; § 25, p. 42; § 72, p. 107; § 100, p. 140;
      § 114, p. 155; § 159, p. 224; § 201, p. 279

    Wells, H. G., § 78, p. 113

    Wifan (root WIB), § 66, p. 100; § 168, p. 233

    Wife, § 170, p. 236

    Wife’s helplessness, § 92, p. 132; § 157, p. 221; § 160, p. 224;
      § 161, p. 225

    Woman’s infinite variety, § 87, p. 126

    Woman’s lack of positive control, § 133, p. 183

    Work, § 50, p. 82

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