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Is A Kiss Just A Kiss?

I must start out with a shout out to Shay! In a recent posting she said "This is a weird question for me because I have been kissing the same person for the last 10 years but, as I dig deep into my memory I am not sure I ever thought about this. I just kissed the way I felt like kissing." Well, I asked the question about kissing from both perspectives (see questions #10 & #11 in blog "I am curious as to ... women and men") because I don't think it would hurt for lovers to think about their love making (kissing being one of the many things lovers can do with one another) instead of just engaging in it. Shay's statement "I just kissed the way I felt like kissing" is quite intriguing. Many of us look at kissing and other intimate acts as stand alone natural reactions. They may be just that, but they also could be so much more. Is it possible that your kiss of her/him recently is connected to some childhood drama, a movie you watched, the way you wanted someone to kiss you, or the way you have always wanted to lip-lock with someone, but never had the courage to do it, until that moment? I don't know if I agree with Bogart's Richard Blane's singing piano player Sam from Casablanca. Is a kiss just a kiss? Well, is it?

Not that all men kiss aggressively, nor all women passively, but if we are socialized to carry out certain behaviours (many unconsciously) why would aggressive or assertive men not be carrying that energy into the bedroom with them as well, or even that momentum into a kiss with a woman. Think about it! And I am really talking about heterosexual relationships here, because I think there is a gender dynamic that plays out in something as non-gendered as a kiss. I mean, when two women kiss passionately gender doesn't have to be a factor (though arguably the influence of gender could still be present). When two men kiss passionately (like in some of the scenes from Brokeback Mountain) that moment also doesn't necessarily have to be gendered either. But is it possible for a man and woman to orally, yet silently speak to one another (a very sensual exchange of oral energy) and only be speaking in their voice? In other words, when I kiss you is it unattached from the world I live in?

So, realizing how confident I am in most things (not all) that I do, why would I not want to be more modest here and there to perhaps discover that as a heterosexual male, my lovers may have been deferring to me in ways that I would have never noticed because they were comfortable letting me take the lead (perhaps also succumbing to their socialization).

Oh, it is complicated living inside my own head, but where else can I go? However, is there something to what I am saying, or do I see a phenomenon that others don't see?


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So, the gist of your question, if I am understanding it, is- To what extent is kissing gendered -or influenced by society? Are you asking whether kissing is a social construct? like love? like marriage? And, tempting as it is to get into that with you- and I will after I first protest- Can we not just leave kissing alone? We have lost Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and other lovely fantasies in the interest of rational analysis, must we subject kissing to the same scrutiny??

But, JW, you are who you are and, like me, you can't leave anything alone and so I will join you in this examination of the kiss. I do hope, however, that the next time I find myself deeply immersed in a passionate kiss with my lover, that I don't exit the scene to watch myself and wonder what the influences upon that kiss might be? That would be such a loss for both of us, myself and my lover.

So- the kiss... I think that the initiation of the kiss is gendered and the lead for the level of intensity may be as well. But, for me, there is a point in which I am so inside the kiss, that I am driven, not unllike Shay, by how I feel like kissing. To me, and I don't think I am alone here- although this may be gendered as well- the kiss is the most intimate aspect of lovemaking. The oral connnection, the intensity of the contact and the play can be so powerful and it is remarkable how easy it is to be lost in it (Hence, my resistance to wanting to think about it too much). To go to a psychological place, the kiss is where 2 people negotiate that space of being separate and being merged- even more so than intercourse, I dare say (can I say that in this blog?) In kissing there is a flow of movement - like a dance. The partners may move inside each other and out. They can be in synchrony with each other, or be apart. Instead of heating up to a particular moment, the kiss can flow with changes in intensity and tone. The kissers can be playful and light or agrressive and hungry. I think it is a time when one is constantly shifting between responsiveness to the other and responsiveness to one's inner experience. It is also a time when I feel closest to the person I am with.

You ask what informs the kiss. Childhood drama - You bet. That 's where our first oral needs are gratified or frustrated (Sorry, you asked for it), movies- maybe as a teenager we see models that we wish to imitate, but I think that is developmental and shortlived. A way you always wanted to be kissed or to kiss---This, I don't know. I do know that there are certain moments, if one is very lucky or very ready, when - in the moment- there is a realization that this kiss is the real deal. It's not that one is trying something out, but just knowing that something missed is now found.

What do you think about that?

*** AMW, I agree that it is easy to get lost in a kiss, to be transported to another place where kisses are the only thing taking place, or at least the only thing taking place until we arrive in another place as a result of all the kissing that occured. But contemplation about the kiss doesn't have to be a bad thing. Not that it needs to be undertaken every time two people's lips meet, but like most things, if we reflect on it with an interest in growing, we will probably discover some things about ourselves that might be worth discovering. There are a whole lot things worse that swimming with someone in combined oral wetness. Oh, and attempting to measure whether you are dominant or submissive in the kiss is a whole lot nicer than always dominating the kiss, or always following someone's lead without realizing that is what you have been doing. Socrates once said, the unexamined life is not worth living. I want to live a life worth living. I consider my kisses from time to time, therefore I am (at least considerate, from time to time)! Rene Descartes is turning over in his grave right now with how I just brutalized his quote. But that doesn't mean you should be wishing for me to "kiss off!" *** -- J.W.

Kiss me first!

To quickly respond to AMW’s comment about just leaving a kiss alone and not further analyzing it like some of us have examined some mythical characters, I have just a couple of things to say. To scrutinize Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and other mythical characters with rational thought should be a required practice regardless of the demystification that might ensue. A kiss is not just a kiss like Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy aren’t just characters created by our fantasies. They all have social ties to our day-to-day realities that are shaped by the society we live in, whether it is patriarchal, heterosexist or capitalist, or all of the above. For example, Santa Claus is the jolly old man that delivers gifts on Christmas, yet he is a white, heterosexual man who serves as the epitome of the ideal parent in our capitalist society. Why isn’t he black, female, homosexual or disabled? Did he and other mythical characters just appear in our imaginations haphazardly? I don’t necessarily think so. They were created from a predominantly white and male context to reinforce that culture. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it can become problematic in some cases. But the kiss is what we’re talking about here. For me a kiss is never just a kiss. It is tied to conventions and rules that are seldom talked about. In the movie “Hitch,” Will Smith helps his client, portrayed by actor Kevin James, to woo women and with the “date doctor” aid other men achieve the suave skills to attract and seduce women. There is a scene in the film when Smith tutors Kevin on first kisses and advises him to lean in 10% of the way and let the woman lean the remaining 90%. Now is this the official rule of first kisses or are there variations. Either a first kiss or a fifth kiss, it is tied to social rules and personal desires, anxieties, and expectations that are constructed and shaped by society and individuals.

Why do I have to lean in for the first kiss most of the time? Is it because women are socialized to be passive and to be on the receiving end? Are some women so entrenched in their gender roles that when wanting a kiss, especially the first one, some play the field and wait for their partners to make the move? This occurs in most cases, but it is necessary to understand, not only the anxieties of many men when leaning for the first kiss, but also the insecurities and assumptions of women while they wait for the kiss. Some women might want to make the first move but recoil because they may not want to be seen as too aggressive, raunchy or with promiscuous tendencies. Still, these assumptions and insecurities are gendered and are constructed in such a way that we seldom come out of our entrenched gender roles. When I kiss, I kiss not because I’m expected to, but because I want to. Maybe subconsciously I want to reenact a passionate kiss I saw in a film one day or maybe I want to find the intimacy and attention I did or didn’t get in the early years when I was being nursed. Whatever it may be, a kiss is tied to social, psychological and biological factors that we often don’t consider since we become so immersed in the act. I think this conversation has conjured so many thoughts that a final question arises. Does conversing about the complexities of kissing on this blog somehow imply that those of us engaged in this conversation have been virtually kissing? If so,…………I enjoyed our first kiss.
Enigma AA

*** Enigma AA, does this mean that you and I have also "virtually" kissed? Man, I didn't even get the chance to stare longingly into your eyes either! I feel cheated! Since we are both men, if we have "virtually kissed, which one of us leaned in 10% and which of us leaned in 90%, or does this only apply in a heterosexual moment?

Frankly, not to offend you, but if I was going to kiss a man, even virtually, it would be George Clooney. Now, does that mean I have succumbed to some type of societal suggestion which has me valuing Clooney's celebrity, whiteness, and maleness? Why couldn't I just want to kiss him because he is so damn cool? Maybe I want to kiss him because he was involved in one of the coolest, yet hottest romantic scenes ever with Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight, and I might have a better chance of kissing him than ever kissing Jennifer Lopez. I will admit this much though, I agree with you that first kisses often are the culimation of gamesmanship. However, with the right person at the right time, it is a game that is worth playing, don't you agree? As a matter of fact, where are my tic-tacs? *** -- J.W.

First, I agree that lovers should ALWAYS be thinking about their love making. OK wait..that statement may have made me sound weird!?! What I mean is we need to keep things interesting and that requires thinking about ways to change it or improve it.

Is a kiss just a kiss? Well that depends on the context of the kiss. Is this a one night stand or a relationship? I would venture to say that a kiss was just a kiss in all the one night stands that occurred in my past. Now that last statement really made me sound promiscuous. However, the kisses were different in my relationships. There is more behind the kiss. Feelings, emotions, a longing to be with that person (not necessarily sexually). I do think that a "man and a woman can orally, yet silently speak to each other." (By the way I love the sound of that phrase, very poetic!) When you're kissing it's not just the aggressive or passive is it? What are you doing with your hands? What are you doing with your heads? Where are you? Is is light or dark out? What were you doing prior to the kiss? Do you love this person? Do you lust this person? What kind of feelings do you have for this person? Have you kissed this person before? What are they doing? How aggressive or passive are they being? I could go on and on...

You ask is a kiss unattached to the world we live in? Probably not. I mean we have all been raised a certain way and we all believe certain things to be true, even about kissing. I do like to think about kissing as an escape from the world we live in though. I am guilty of trying to kiss as passionately as the hot couple in the movie but in the end it didn't matter! It should just happen however it happens!

*** Shay, do men say to you

"Shay, I pray you don't keep me at bay today. What does it take to allay, or sway, you in your way, so that I may, well, okay, that is enough, anymore I may pay for what I say."

I thought it would be fun to go all the way with the name Shay. What can I say!

Now, to business... first, who defines promiscous? Not I? Frankly, I'm surprised that you would even be concerned with how a statement about your sensuality might sound to others. Who listening hasn't delved into some moment or another that wasn't a bit freaky from other's perspectives. If I interpreted your statement in a judgmental way, would I really be worth the time to even converse with. Not that it should be more or less a major event to have access to conversations with me, or anyone for that matter. But life is too short to give someone's opinion over us more credibility than it warrants, and no one's opinion should warrant enough weight for us to feel as if some aspect of our sexuality is deviant because it doesn't conform with theirs. After all, most of the time those judging our morality haven't taken the time to unpack the various dimensions and hypocrisies of their own. But more importantly, why should someone with an unprogressive perspective on post-millenial sensuality have that type of power over someone who is sensually unchained. Of course I am not discounting deviance or deviants that often become the topics of sensual discourse by prevailing moralists of a Judeo-Christian ethic (rapists, child molesters) to further legitimize the conservative, traditionalists sentiment of Puritanical prudence. But I am saying "aint nothing like getting your sweve on from time to time. A kiss is the catalyst more often than not!

It makes me feel really good to know that you liked my phrase 'when a "man and a woman can orally, yet silently speak to each other."' It is definitely a phrase I was using to paint a visual while also stimulating other senses in the process!

I just said a lot, and its late and I may not have been as lucid as I would like. On the other hand, your response to the question "Is A Kiss Just A Kiss" steamed up my glasses, and they are two rooms away. Shay, I didn't know you had it like that! Damn... *** -- J.W.

I prefer to take this blog dialog down another path to understanding the "power of the kiss." While I believe the kiss is probably the most public of intimate acts we can express, it's also what's being said or not said with that kiss that's so facinating. Who you choose to kiss, who you choose not to kiss, where, when and how not only is a reflection of your own sexuality but, and I believe most importantly, how relationships are defined/framed. Why not take the "kiss"... oh and I should qualify... I mean the "kiss on the lips" , which symbolically represents and should be reserved for those very personal and intimate of moments, and put it right out there for all to see. How better for all who are watching to understand or contextualize the meaning of a relationship when it's "sealed with a kiss."

*** ABV, Sealedn with a kiss, eh! So, let the kiss represent the permanency of a relationship, eh! I can appreciate that symbolism, but what happens to the kiss when it is constantly occurring within a non-public relationship? All kisses aren't situated or don't occur within relationships that everyone has access to. What is the statement that is made with kisses that take place unexpectedly, or that aren't supposed to happen? Stolen kisses that occur amidst or amongst forbidden love; what do both lovers say with those kisses? While your statement about kisses that "seal the deal" specifically indicates the finality of certain moments of "oral expression," that may or may not be gendered, do those kisses or kisses that must be furtive or clandestine happen without underlying statements of control or influence? When the two lovers kiss publicly is it a moment whereby both immediately knew it needed to happen, or is there often something political occurring with one person having more power in initiating the moment, dictating the length or location of the kiss? Do both people kissing want the same amount of intensity in the kiss or is one kissing quickly (wanting it to end but complying with their interpretation of what they think the object of their affection may want) while the other is kissing longingly-- wanting more but not being given it? I don't enter into these discussions without having given them much thought. Your posting speaks to the power/magnitude behind a kiss.This may be why I wanted to teach a class on Romance, Sex, Love, and Marriage. Ironically years ago I wrote a poem called "Listen To My Kiss." I think it may frame the essence of what you suggest:

Listen To My Kiss

Listen to me closely
for what I have to say
will not be spoken in the old
routine traditional way.
Conveyed in normal fashion
my point you still could miss.
I think you'll understand me totally
if you listen to my kiss.

May I kiss you sweetheart
may I gently lick your lips
and look you deeply in the eye
while my hands rest on your hips,
for as my body ever so nervously
brushes against your upper thigh,
don't be surprised
for I'd be surprised
if that's all I dared to try.

Let me kiss your neck erotically
and nibble if I may
not stopping until the night has seen
the dawning of the day.
I want to kiss you passionately
though as tender as I might
for it's moments like that
which tempt me very much to take a bite.

I want to kiss your body
like it has never been kissed before,
a billion times in a million places
and then in a million more.
For I eagerly await the moment
when our heart will skip a beat
from our chest to breast embracing
and various other treats.

When our lips do wed,
why, the very essence of you
gives me the wisdom to realize
that my lips belong to you.
And all I'm really striving for
is that day our kiss will take
us to an orgiastic paradise
where love can not be faked.
Until that day does happen
a point you should not miss
is that to me a kiss is really more than just a kiss.
It's the total expression of what I think,
what I feel,
and who I am
and I'll kiss you any time and place
and just not give a damn
as to the opinions of people
who can't relate to our sensual bliss
for not everyone will have the chance
to kiss the way we kiss!
J.W. Wiley

Is this what you are suggesting about the public expression of oral wetness ABV, or am I overstating the case? *** -- J.W.

The kiss is what you make it. Eyes closed, maybe open, heads tilted slightly and then lips connect, tongue brushstrokes on your lovers canvas.
What am I doing here? when will this be over? Did I remember to take the dog out?
Heart racing as questions of performance invade the mind - Does he/she like the kiss?
Ultimately, whatever power a kiss holds, when two beings communicate through that oral embrace, the gravity of the moment rests solely in the participants minds. One can let society's parameters dictate the essence of the kiss. One can own the moment and create the essence of the kiss to one's own liking.
I would rather make my moment, and I think for me it becomes exiting reality and entering a world in which there only exists a pair of mouths dancing in the pool of each other's essence.
I too believe energy can be exchanged through a kiss. So kiss, kiss, kiss and kiss some more.
A friend once told me that the kiss she and her lover shared had him "smilin' sexy" the next day. I like that.

So…… Mr. Wiley, if we could say with words what we mean with a kiss then, you’ve captured the “telling of the kiss” so beautifully with your poem. Maybe that’s it, the inherent contradiction of the kiss: The simple act of kissing can heal or cause heartache. That so much can be understood about a person by their kiss should be reason enough for all of us to take notice of how we apply this “oral expression.” What we are able to say without words is as powerful as what we may imply with those words. To answer your question about the “meaning “ whether in a clandestine moment or in a public place, it doesn’t matter where that kiss happens in space. All that matters is if it’s intended message was conveyed accurately. That’s what is so sensual, so essential about body language…. “It goes without saying” so to “not” speak. So I believe “A kiss is worth a thousand words”, and that we all need to un-clutter our minds, relax and listen to the “kiss”.

*** ABV, you've got me listening! *** -- J.W.

Oh, just one more thought and expanding on what you shared with us earlier. Body language, like a kiss, is such a critical piece of the human conversation. It may reveal how you’ve been socialized, your cultural identity and how you fit into that continuum. I understand AMW’s concern for over- analyzing even something as simple and beautiful as a kiss. However, we need to recognize what we may imply with that kiss and how it impacts the recipient. We may need to change our delivery…. Thanks for “listening”

Listen To My Kiss gives the reader, at least me in this instance, a nice glimpse into a very sexy and romantic moment between two lovers who have retreated to a haven, perhaps in their alternate universe, where they can forget the outside world exists and devote themselves and their thoughts to each other. This kiss is not just an ordinary kiss. It is transcendent, the way a kiss should be, but often times is not. Kissing, to me, is the unspoken expression of self and we sometimes allow ourselves or our partners to take it for granted. So, rather than experience such an unfortunate loss of intimacy, it may behoove us to invest in a little thought, or perhaps a conversation about it. Then, our minds are freed from future worry or distractions and we can listen to our kiss.

*** EDR, Wow, so you suggest getting all the analytical and theoretical conversation out of the way so that nothing impedes "the kiss." ! I guess in the future those of us fortunate to read you should heed you, try your method, and listen more closely to those kisses! *** -- J.W.

I've thought about the philosophical meaning behind kissing for quite some time now, although I have had few conversations about it. The consensus seems to be that a kiss is definitely not "just a kiss." Gender based socialization, especially but not exclusively in heterosexual relationships, most certainly does have an impact on a kiss, although it could entertain or defy social norms. I know this because I have kissed both men and women, and my experience with each sex has been different. A women’s kiss has always felt gentler to me, and a man’s kiss more aggressive and arousing. There could be several reasons behind my feelings (i.e.-heterosexual socialization, gender norms, etc…) but the bottom line is that those interpretations are mine alone. My kissing partner could be feeling completely different or completely in sync with me, but when the sync takes place, its existence is magical!

When, as a woman, I initiate a kiss, or dominate a kiss, my male counterpart almost always has some type of reaction, whether it be one of surprise or excitement, the reaction is there! Looking at what we are implying behind our kiss is obviously extremely subjective and up for interpretation, even so, the power behind a kiss is unique. Because there is no language involved during the moment or moments of the kiss, several barriers are broken down. I kiss people to learn about their nature, among other reasons, and I find the kissing-connection to be unique of a conversation-based connection. Although language serves as a bridge between one mind and another, it limits our ability to express our mind's contents. There are things I can express to another person through a kiss that I could never put into words. That is the beauty of kissing!

One last thought- A kiss is unique to other physical, sexual, interaction between individuals because a kiss is the only act that lets you not only feel the other person, but taste them as well. How’s that for stimulating the senses?

*** ALC, first off, it should be apparent to all who have read your blog posting that discussing a kiss you may be on the verge of engaging might escalate the moment for you. I have had some non-posters disclose to me that they had read some of these exchanges and were ready to test some theories. Your post made me want to go to Sam's Club and purchase one of those super packs of chap stick so I can really put in some work.

I am curious though about the things that you say can be expressed during a kiss. I imagine you could say "don't stop" or "can we lie down and do this." I can even imagine expressing "why aren't your fingers caressing my shoulder blades in feather-like fashion as our lips lightly slip-slide along one another's with enough wetness for them to not lose their lubrication, but not so much wetness that our lips lose their connection."

Yes, I can imagine some things in a romantic sense, but also in a socio-political sense. Race is a factor in a kiss for most of us though we may not want to own it. You can't live in a society that devalues others overtly and covertly and not think that it has no effect on any social moment, including intimate ones. Often many of us live in communities that reflect our racial reality. Therefore the first kiss/es we usually experience is/are with someone of our own race. If the kiss is with an Asian woman, White woman, or Latina the images/stereotypes that may/may not accompany my fantasizing about an intimate moment with any of these women may only be surpassed by the fact that the moment is actually at hand. For you, as a bi-sexual woman, or perhaps even trysexual (try anything once,) woman, I wouldn't know if race would be a factor for you or any other bisexual woman, gay man, or lesbian. Would it? Think about it, if I shared with my friends that I had kissed a Black woman they would have a different response than the one they might have if I identified the woman as Black and disabled, perhaps paraplegic. The same would apply if most women I kissed were shorter than me (I'm 5'9) and all of a sudden I am tip toeing to silently chat with a woman 6'1'. So, knowing that my intimacy with someone is not above society's judgment, when I pucker and lean I know there are more people who will attach to that moment than just the two people exchanging breath selfishly and sensually. Your thoughts?
The bottom line though, welcome to WW, ALC! Oh yeah, you got game! *** -- J.W.

J.W.- My initial response you your reply-post was whoa!!!... I'm not bisexual, I've never been in a relationship with another woman, and does kissing one make me bisexual? Pondering the question allowed me to realize something about my way of thinking. My belief about the sexuality of an individual is not one that includes categories or labels (not to imply that you were labeling me, because words are needed to have a discussion). Most of us like to think of ourselves as heterosexual or homosexual or bisexual, but in my opinion we are all somewhere in between, and that place is not one society accepts. In opinion of most, that place does not even exist! Because of the unsafe feeling that accompanies choosing not to choose, most people make a choice and call it their nature.

Getting back to our original topic of kissing though, you're right; race does play a factor in whom we kiss, how we kiss them, and why we kiss them. To be honest, I can’t remember every person I have ever kissed. In contrast to that, I can remember every person who I have kissed that was of a different racial background than myself, and there must be a reason for that. The moment that the kiss took place, my mind began to wander to places that entertained thoughts like, what are his friends going to think me, or what if this turns into something serious, would his family care that I’m white? Those thoughts take away from the “sync” of a kiss that I mentioned before. They place the simplicity of language in-between the beauty of the energy that is exchanged during a kiss.

This is not specific to race, it can happen when the sex is the same between each person, or when the ability of each person is different, but talking and thinking about it has helped already helped me to realize that these thoughts need not be entertained. Freedom isn’t always taken away; sometimes it is given away subconsciously. There is no reason to consciously give up the potential of a kiss. ALC

*** ALC, other than the fact it is apparent that you have seen the film Kinsey (with his sexuality scale that situates our sexuality inclination), while you may not see yourself as bisexual because you just experienced a kiss with a woman (and society allows you that freedom of exploration), when a man kisses another man, and society gets wind of it, was he experimenting and in the process of the experiment retaining his heterosexual status, or does he uneqivocally become "gay." Oh, and I could care less if you are gay, bisexual, lesbian, or heterosexual, as long as you keep buying my albums! (what albums? that's the point!)

You know I have never asked or even thought of the impact of race on a kiss until this dialogue with you and others. Now I am really curious as to what others think about the phenomenon of the actuality of the moment, as well as how we anticipate the moment of a kiss with a differently racialized person. I think I see another blog taking shape. *** -- J.W.

After recently enjoying one of my most passionate and intimate kisses, I think many questions are formed with relation to your blog. What is the intent of the kiss? How well do you know the person with whom your kissing, how well do you know them sexually? I choose to not believe race plays that much of an important role as to how well do you know that person. Regardless of race, the extent of how well you know the person's sexual needs (and how well you satisfy those needs) is crucial for that magnesium flare sparked between two souls, as it is also a catalyst for less intimate events. I think kissing does more to us than what we realize. The hunger of the person ignitiating the kiss inspires a creative lust within us. We are desired, we are wanted in that very moment and nothing of the outside world matters. How does the desire of another person for us influence us in a kiss? For females, (who have been stereotyped as more "passive kissers" due to societies influence) do we reciprocate passionatly accepting, or aggresively leaning the 90%?

I think the most enjoyable kisses are the kisses we sethlem think about. They are not done without thinking of the location, or the opinions of others. They are not concerned with the reaction of the other person, simply because the concent is already anticipated. Being in love with the person can generally mean being intuned with the person, fulfilling their desires and prioritizing their sexual needs before that of your own. In the analyetical world that our adult minds now reside, LOVE is the closest thing we have to magic; and it is both beautiful and mesmerizing to experience.

A woman once said, “Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after.” I would say the same thing about a kiss.

Beyond the physical and emotional stimulation that a kiss produces, a kiss is an intimate form of communication. Whether its love, friendship, respect, thanks, or passion, a kiss is designed, directly and indirectly, to tell another how we feel about them. To start with, we (i.e. society) have classified kissing on a sequence and placed restrictions around when kissing is appropriate. The old baseball analogy to intimacy is a great example---kissing illustrates 1st base, touching or “heavy petting,” is 2nd base, and so on until you “score” at home plate. The sequence is built up or progressed through and the order is rarely changed. Moreover, we’ve even instituted social norms on when kissing is appropriate and criticize others when those norms are broken. For instance, many believe that it’s considered “slutty” for a woman to kiss on the first date. Pre-pubescent children have been charged with sexual harassment for kissing a peer in the school yard. Moreover, what’s acceptable in one society may not be acceptable in another. In many East-Asian cultures, males’ first sexual experience is often with other males because of the gender restrictions placed on children.

Beyond the sequencing and appropriateness of kissing, the type of kiss and its location communicates different information. Many would agree that a French kiss is considered much more passionate and even erotic than say a “peck.” But how about a kiss on the forehead, neck, or ear? A buddy of mine once criticized me for kissing a sexual partner of mine on the forehead when leaving the morning after. In my friend’s mind, the single act of kissing her on the forehead communicated a deeper level of intimacy and sincerity than our casual sexual relationship allowed for. He stated that he had been dating a girl for several months and had yet to kiss her on the forehead because he wasn’t ready to communicate that sort of commitment. Can the location of a simple kiss, even after a night of intimacy, communicate the status of a relationship? While it may seem trivial to many, I would say the answer is “yes.”

That being said, if, according to Will Smith’s character in “Hitch,” women do in fact infer how a man is in bed based on how he dances, (dance being a form of communication all its own), what do you think they infer from a kiss---an act that’s actually on the “path” to sex? I guess I’ll engage in some “stimulating” conversation over some black coffee to find out.

Kissing is too another form of communication in my opinion.
Scientists have found that it's a way for women to tell instantly whether a man is confident, has a good immune system and is dominant.
I too didn’t know about this, I thought that a kiss is just a kiss, but apparently there is more to it.

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