No Trump Or No Sex – Relationship Suicide Or Smart Plan?

by Dr. Karen Ruskin on March 13, 2016

“No Trump or No Sex”, “Vote Trump Or Get Dumped” – Have you heard about this campaign against Presidential hopeful Donald Trump? Yes folks, it’s just what it sounds like. A woman decides to create a group to campaign against Trump and determines the ideal method is to spread the word that women (implying men too, though with all the statements in various news outlets the clear focus of this campaign is directed toward women) should withhold sexual intimacy from their mate unless their mate agrees with them to not vote for Trump. As a Psychotherapist who specializes in Marriage and Relationship Issues counseling couples, men and women for over 20 years and owner of a counseling practice specializing in relationships in which I provide consultation to the next generation of therapists, I wish to provide the following 5 points to consider before you take action on implementing this concept:

Bad For Your Sexual Health

NOOOOOOOOO ladies!!! NOOOOOO! This is very bad for YOUR sexual health! This is also horrifically damaging to the relationship health and wellness of the COUPLE. It is my strong opinion through the lens of a therapist who provides counseling for couples and has seen the damage that using sex as a source of control does to couples, that you should not use your sexual self to force another to make a choice based upon your voice thereby forcing your mate not to have a voice.

Points to consider:

This is controlling (thus damaging to the relationship). Being a strong woman, a self advocate and empowered is getting lost in translation of how to live this reality authentically. Using sex as a tool of control, as a way to get what you want – this is not healthy, this is not advocacy, this is not empowerment. This is unhealthy for you and for your mate and the couple unit.

This is relationship suicide.

This is relationally abusive as it is neglectful, as it is withholding of the literal physical form of love (sexual intimacy) and therefore is: emotional, physical and sexually neglectful.

The method of withholding love, be it emotional intimacy, physical connection or sexual intimacy – is a tool of relational destruction.

Each person in the couple unit is to have a voice, for each person’s perspective is of value. If you step on your mate’s voice, over time this will become quite the resentful mate.

A lack of respect of one’s partner’s perspective creates a relationship dynamic that is unhealthy and disharmonious. You don’t have to always agree. How to agree to disagree in a respectful way is an important point to consider.

Know this: couples are not always going to agree, and when it comes to politics, this is just but one example.

Using Sex As Tool Of Control

When women (or men) in a committed relationship use sexual relations as a weapon of hurt or as a reward based system it damages the relationship and defines what intimacy is. For you are using sex as a tool of control. Intimacy is supposed to be about connection. Sexual intimacy and how one experiences it in a relationship is symbolic for the couple whole. In committed relationships if we withhold love when our mate has a difference of opinion, it ultimately creates a power discrepancy in a relationship where one is in control and controlling and the other must obey, or else ____.

We are living in a generation where it is not uncommon for women to be deemed as the boss of the home in that they typically decide and manage how the house is run, and make parenting decisions for the family. In addition, we are also living in a time where women are in charge, decision makers and bosses outside of the home. Is sex yet another category in which for women to be the boss of, to control and determine when sex occurs and when it doesn’t based upon the behaviors or opinions of one’s mate? Sex when experienced as a decision between a couple unit to explore, connect, have fun, experiment and grow during their journey of sexual health – that is a powerful experience for the couple. It is the sexual relationship dynamic that plays a part in other areas of the couple’s life. If sex is used and abused as a controlling tool to get what one wants, the couple becomes defined by that and each person within that couple is affected in a negative way.

James Carville and Mary Matalin

A powerful example of how couples can have a different political point of view, respect each others differences and can successfully remain together is well known husband and wife James Carville (American political commentator and prominent figure in the Democratic party) and Mary Matalin (American political consultant known for her work with the Republican party). Could you imagine if she withheld sex each time they had a different perspective? Likely their children would never have been born.

Thou Shalt Not Interact With People Who Think Differently Then Me

The quote: “withholding canoodling… a tried and true method of getting men’s attention when they are being dumb” as reported by the Inquisitr as stated by “vote trump get dumped” campaign founder, is disturbing to me as a Psychotherapist who specializes in relationship issues. To infer that another’s point of view is “dumb” because it is different from one’s own is concerning. We live in a world of differences of opinions. Should a child who is vegan withhold a play-date with the child whom he grew up with because his friend is a meat eater? “Until you stop eating meat I shall not play with you.” Shall a woman no longer go out for movie night and withhold that quality time with her friend since she thinks her friend’s philosophy of home schooling is crazy in comparison to her philosophy of public schooling? “Until you put your child in public school, we can’t go out for our usual movie night as I think your perspective is dumb since it’s so philosophically different then mine.” Should a husband not have sex with his wife because she disagrees with his opinion about their son trying out for the football team as she fears concussions and he has a love of the sport and thinks her perspective is stupid? “Unless you agree with me and support my opinion for our son to play football, no sex for you pretty lady.” Should a woman of whom has been married to her husband since age 19, but now at age 29 she’s become more religious, and follows the rules of Jewish orthodoxy specifically in terms of eating Kosher state to her husband who does not eat Kosher: “Unless you eat Kosher too, I am never going to hug you again.” Should a parent whose child married outside of their religion cut off their relationship unless the child gets a divorce and marry within their own religion? The list goes on…. Where do we draw the line?

Bottom Line: The philosophy of withholding of one’s affections be it time with another, verbal interaction, physical closeness or sexual intimacy when a person we are close with has a difference of opinion – by it’s very base is a genuine problem. To put it bluntly, we do not live in a world where couples, families, friends, colleagues, etc. will always agree with one another.

Couples Political Differences

When it comes to politics, having a difference of opinion with one’s mate and having an interesting dialogue where each shares their strong point of view while hearing respectfully the other’s perspective can be a powerful deep connection of interaction. Do not let your political perspective control your relationship with your mate. If you do allow your political point of view and whom you vote for control and effect your relationship with your mate, then really who is in power and thus pulling strings versus who is the puppet? If you allow your political opinion that is different from your mate determine your sexual relationship frequency or quality, determine your verbal interaction with your mate and/or your physical interactions, who are you hurting? You are hurting yourself, your mate, your couple unit, and if you have children, your children as well.

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