is love without sex possible?

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Pascal Anger (Family and Marriage Psychotherapist)


It is hard to imagine today that a romantic relationship can last without sex. Platonic love, simple concept or real experience

In a hypersexualized society, it is hard to imagine that a love affair can last without carnal relationships. And yet platonic love can affect everyone, in the more or less long term. Testimony and explanations with Pascal Anger, psychotherapist.

Elaborated in the text Party by Plato and highlighted by the philosopher Marsile Ficino, the term platonic love denotes a love affair devoid of sexual relations. A concept that can work “a bit outdated“, Notes Pascal Anger, psychotherapist,”since today we are more into hypersexuality. It feels like we’re talking about a time that no longer exists. Still, he states:At any age, platonic love exists. When you are a child, teenager, adult, you can also be married and have a platonic relationship with another …“.

Platonic love will favor a non-physical contact: “eye play, tenderness, affection, especially intellectual sharing … It’s all softness and nuance. Sometimes we are aware of what is happening, sometimes not ‘. The psychotherapist develops a “kind of innocence“in this love:”we will love the other for his soul, this whole and spiritual dimension, and not for anything else. “

What is the difference between platonic love and friendship?

In platonic love as in friendship, “there is no physical possession, ”Explains Pascal Anger. He nevertheless believes that platonic love is “more than a friendship because there may be desire, but it is not necessarily expressed. We can covet the other, but without acting.

Platonic love: who is worried?

Is living a platonic love a choice or a relationship that suffers? What can make a couple not have sex? The psychotherapist first mentions “the couple’s wear and tear, where we will find ourselves in a kind of routine and displace our desire. This love without crowded sexuality will be enough for us ”.

There may also be pain during penetrating intercourse, which may cut off all sexual desire or prevent the penetrating sexual act over a more or less long period of time. This was the case for Marine *, 25, and her partner, with whom she has been in a relationship for four years. “We had a long period with no or very little sex. Which was destabilizing because it happened pretty fast. I have a disease that makes intercourse painful, so I developed vaginismus. “ A situation which the couple initially experienced poorly and which did not immediately understand the causes of these difficulties. Marine admits to having felt “shame“while his partner”thought it was his fault“than she did against him”more effect“.”I think he lost his confidence a bit.“, she adds.

Certain religious beliefs may prohibit sexual intercourse, especially outside of marriage.

In addition, some asexual people, that is, people who do not feel little or no sexual attraction, may not want to have intercourse, although libido may be present.

Pascal Anger also evokes platonic love in certain extramarital affairs. “There is joy in loving the other, there is feeling, but we are not guilty as we do not touch the other and we do not break the covenant. We will keep his secret. “

Platonic love: what are the pros and cons?

If Platonic love often imposes itself, the benefits can be several. Starting with the ability to take stock of each individual’s true feelings. “It proved to us that we love each other even without sexsays Marine, It did not affect the love we had for each other. “ This period without sex has really allowed them to express their love in other ways. “We cuddled a lot, we kept saying dirty words to each other or sending sexts. It did us good. We kept loving each other very much. “

Pascal Anger plus silk. “Basically, it’s not just sex in the couple! With platonic love we will be in love with the other. And besides, love and sexual desire do not always go hand in hand. “ A way to release the pressure around sex, in short.

But platonic love can also have drawbacks, including frustration on the part of one or both partners. “Sif you feel that at some point there is desire but you are not able to express it other than through sex, it can be embarrassing“, explains the psychotherapist.”Obviously, we missed sexadmits Marina. This releases tensions, but it is above all a very intimate moment between two people. And in the couple, it’s important“, she assesses. She also mentions the weight of the taboo on” no sex “in the couple:”That in our case it is a couple problem that we do not dare to talk about so easily with friends and relatives, the problem crystallizes even more. We both feel alone in this. “

Finally, Pascal Anger evokes the dangers of a platonic love that one imposes on oneself due to complexes or lack of self-confidence. “If we only live it, we will never go to the other, and that can be disruptive.

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Can a platonic relationship last?

In the end, is sex essential in a romantic relationship? Can a platonic relationship have a future? “Of course, it can even last a very long timesays the psychotherapist. It depends on what we are looking for, on our desires both, on our desires. It depends on where we are in our emotional life, in our sex life. We are not all equal in terms of sex and sexuality. It’s a part of life, but it’s not crucial to all of us. “ But he insists:The important thing is that there is no frustration, either on one side or the other. “ Everyone needs to find their account and ignore the pressure from society.

For Marine, sex remains “super important”. “It is something that is shared between the two partners, it helps to feel good about your body …“Thanks to a drug she could”find desire“.”And it made me very good to want the man I loveshe lets go. We started having sex without penetration again, had intimate moments without pressure. He also bought me sex toys so I could have some time to myself. “ And basically, what is the sexual act when you can live it solo, without penetration, or a simple kiss can be considered as such?

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