Exchanging Sex for Affection is a Dangerous Trade

The exchange of sex for affection, which does anything but benefit us, can greatly hurt our self-esteem since others can't give us what we're lacking.
Exchanging Sex for Affection is a Dangerous Trade

Last update: 27 May, 2022

Have you ever exchanged sex for affection? At first, no one would dare to admit to this and the answer is always “no”. However, this belief is more than instilled in our minds.

I’m sure that you’ve heard that men show women affection in return for sex and that women are completely the opposite.

When this happens, we find ourselves in a toxic relationship that tears us apart and we end up hurting ourselves.

How you enter into a relationship determines everything

Do you think you get into a relationship because you’re in love? On occasion, we get into relationships because we’re afraid of being lonely or for fear that no one will ever love us again.

Read more here: The Main Characteristics of Toxic Love

The problem is that we never question what was the initial factor that caused all of the misfortunes that later took place.

Both the fear of loneliness and the fear of losing the person we need (but not the one we love) brings us to a point where we end up exchanging sex for affection.

How many people have had sexual relationships without actually liking their partner? Or how about those who have slept with someone after the first date because they were scared that their date wouldn’t want to see them again if they didn’t?

As you can see, we’re talking about fear, a fear that has nothing to do with love. More so, our own self-love gets damaged by these actions and this leads to terrible suffering.

Damaged relationships

However, we don’t realize that we are the first to disvalue ourselves by exchanging something as intimate as sex for a little dose of affection.

What are we looking for? What void are we trying to fill? Are we missing something? These are the questions that we should be asking ourselves and we should know how to answer them so that we can avoid falling into these traps that we put ourselves and lead us to get into very damaging relationships.

People put so much importance on the other person that we go so far as to “sell” ourselves in a way so that we can get something that we think we lack.

We don’t realize that, by doing this, we set ourselves up to get hurt… and it usually ends up happening.

We think that we’re needy and that we aren’t enough. Because of that, we look for others that can complete us and fulfill our needs even if that means exchanging sex for affection.

Exchanging sex for affection. Maybe it’s love?

A person who exchanges sex for affection.

When we exchange sex for affection, can we call it love? The truth is that we can’t because, in reality, it’s a necessity.

We’re looking for something that we don’t have, something that hurts us and that we know isn’t healthy for us.

We always tend to look outside of ourselves. Maybe because it’s easier, but it’s also riskier.

This is because we forget about our own well-being and happiness because our self-love depends on other people who disappoint us, deceive us, and frustrate us.

This happens because no one but ourselves can give us the things that we need. People will never meet all of our needs.

Also, blindly believing that love is what we’re feeling, when in reality it’s necessity, is one of the worst things we can do to ourselves.

We’re not being honest and are fooling ourselves. We know it but we just don’t want to see it. Our fears can control us far more than any truth.

A dangerous trade

Exchanging sex for affection is a dangerous trade because it affects our well-being. It makes us suffer and can even lead to anxiety and depression.

We don’t have to exchange anything because we don’t need anything that we can’t get on our own.

This is why we need to stop believing that other people are the ones who’ll fix the things that happen to us and why we need to start doing it for ourselves.

Discover: 8 Pieces of Advice for Ending a Relationship on a Good Note

We can’t wear ourselves out in vain because our wounds will just take longer to heal.

Each time we exchange sex for affection, we open a new cut that’ll bleed, that’ll be a tough blow to our self-love. We’re enough and we’re loved. We only need to look inside ourselves.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Debrot, A., Meuwly, N., Muise, A., Impett, E. A., & Schoebi, D. (2017). More than just sex: Affection mediates the association between sexual activity and well-being. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 43(3), 287-299.
  • Hobbs, M., Owen, S., & Gerber, L. (2017). Liquid love? Dating apps, sex, relationships and the digital transformation of intimacy. Journal of Sociology, 53(2), 271-284.
  • Fisher, H. E. (2015). Why we hook up: Searching for sex or looking for love?. In Gender, Sex, and Politics (pp. 238-250). Routledge.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.