So... eyes open or eyes closed? Which is the best? We disagree, so have decided to turn to you for the final word on this matter. We’ve been together for six years, get along well on the whole and mostly enjoy our sex life.
Mrs S as referee? I don’t think so! And who says there’s a best way to make love? Enduring desire requires ongoing attention to both eroticism and emotional connection.
With eyes open you are certainly aware of who you’re making love to, eye contact can be part of a close connection during lovemaking and you have the potential visual cues for erotic stimulation. So if those things turn you on and if your partner is someone you find visually pleasing, then eyes open will be your style. Disadvantages include some Picasso-type views, close-ups of blackheads and up hairy noses, and the reality of “imperfect” partners – if, erotically, you’re a perfectionist or have specific body shape preferences.
With eyes closed you can focus on the sensations of your lover’s skin against your hands, lips, body – which is great for people who are more kinaesthetic than visual. You can introduce fantasy, either privately in your own head or shared with your partner, to enhance the erotic charge. You can also airbrush your image of your lover if there are some aspects you find displeasing. Disadvantages of this are that you may miss out on the intimate connection by not being fully present, although some people find the visual aspects lead to sensory overload and they’re more present without them.
Clearly, the biggest challenge is when two lovers each fall into a different camp, as you two do. In that case sometimes the very benefits of an eyes-closed stance are actually offensive to the partner. It’s essential – as with every aspect of relationships – to accept each other as unique individuals and not expect the other to be a clone of you, even though the ease of that neat fit may appeal greatly.
This doesn’t mean that change isn’t required. You two need to listen carefully to the other explain exactly what they prefer about their own style of lovemaking and generously, wholeheartedly, seek to join them at least half of the time in providing what they seek. Keep your relationship and mutual co-operation as your priorities.