Given over to desire

(Technically not visually X-rated, but very heavy in sexual content.)

In writing about facial expressions during gay sex (especially, during man-on-man intercourse), I’ve remarked on an ecstatic expression often shown by one partner (usually, the bottom) or both of them. From a posting on “Captioned croppings”, this example of mutual ecstasy (mouths open, eyes narrowed or fully shut):


The expressions are an outward manifestation of an inner state of mind (and body), an intense giving over of one’s self to, or losing one’s conscious self in, the sexual experience — an ecstasy or rapture. Gay men sometimes speak of a bottom in this transcendant state as being in heat; the counterpart for a top would be, I suppose, being in rut or rutting, though I’ve never heard the expression. These ways of talking adopt the vocabulary of sexual behavior in certain animals for an only very roughly analogous human phenomenon.

From Wikipedia:

In species with estrous cycles [like cats and dogs], females are generally only sexually active during the estrus phase of their cycle … This is also referred to as being “in heat”. (link)

The rut is the mating season of ruminant animals such as deer, sheep, elk, moose, caribou, ibex, goats, pronghorn and Asian and African antelope. During the rut (also known as the rutting period, and in sheep sometimes as tupping), males often rub their antlers or horns on trees or shrubs, fight with each other, wallow in mud or dust, and herd estrus females together. (link)

In human beings, the transcendant state during sex can be distinguished from a preceding state of intense desire for sex, though the two are part of a larger behavioral and psychological pattern. For the state of intense desire for gay sex, the general expression in English seems to be the all-purpose being horny, although this is most often used of men desiring the sexual services of another man (who serves as fellator or bottom). Otherwise, being in heat or in rut can be extended to the preparatory phase, or a longer, more compositional expression can be used: need dick or be hungry for dick, need a blow job, need to be fucked, need (an) ass, etc.

Some animal behavior that looks sexual may in fact spring from other sources — humping in dogs, in particular. (The term humping relates the phenomenon to sexual intercourse, since it also serves as a synonym for the stronger fucking.)

From a Psychology Today piece of 9/1/12, “Why Dogs Hump: There isn’t, a single reason behind this normal behavior”, by Mark Bekoff:

“On a beautiful, warm afternoon, I watched a group of dogs frolic in a dog park. Suddenly, I heard a woman’s high-pitched yelp, followed by the pounding of human feet. There was no need to look; it was obviously about humping, which we can also refer to as mounting.” So wrote Julie Hecht in her excellent review of humping by dogs. Indeed, because humping often often offends some people, Julie titled her essay “H*umping”.

Mounting and humping by dogs are among those behavior patterns about which humans make lots of assumptions but we really don’t know much about them. Dogs will mount and hump other dogs and other nonhuman animals … from a wide variety of positions, human legs, and objects such as beach balls, water buckets, food bowls, pillows, and garbage pails without a care in the world. If you want to watch please do but an audience isn’t necessary. Sometimes they hold on for upwards of 20-30 seconds and sometimes they just jump on and slide off and saunter away. And size doesn’t matter.

While many humans feel embarrassed when they see a beloved four-legged friend mount and hump in public places, this behavior is a normal part of a dog’s behavioral repertoire. Both males and females mount and hump, and these behaviors first appear early in a dog’s life, particularly during play. Mounting and humping should not be considered abnormal behavior patterns.

While mounting is best known for its role in reproduction, it also occurs in many other contexts and emotional states. Dogs mount when they’re excited and [aroused] and even when they’re stressed and anxious. Take out the leash to go for a walk and Lassie starts humping Toto. You come home after a long day’s work and Spot goes for your leg.


One Response to “Given over to desire”

  1. Michael Says:

    I’m not sure how different the dog humping is from human humping, at least as how it’s outlined here or from what I’ve seen. After all, human sexual repertoires are quite wide and include all kinds of objects and roles and with many different motivations and triggers. It’s certainly not primarily or at least usually about reproduction. Reproduction tends to be a primary reason NOT TO FUCK. The primary difference is that there is at least awareness and concern with others watching.

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