In light of my recent hormone surge, today I watched a controversial film called Diary of a Nymphomaniac. It was not what I expected.

I saw a couple of reviews that referred to it as pornographic, but I have to disagree. It was a disturbing, dark picture that dared to delve deeply into a young woman’s inner struggle to reconcile her sex drive, her need for reciprocal love, and society’s expectations of her. There was lots and lots of sex, but none of it seemed like porn – it was artfully done and part of the tale.

The story begins in France, and the lyrical rhythm of the language reminded me of my western European love affair. It then moves to Barcelona, where the majority of the movie is spoken in Spanish.

This film left a mark on me… while I don’t think I’m a nymphomaniac, I strongly identified with Valerie’s suffering.

In my own search for fulfillment, I also wrestle with the difference between sex and love. Sex appears to be a purely physical need, but it’s inextricably connected with my emotions. Ideally, I want both – everything. But I’m wondering if, right now, it’s possible for me to just love myself and have my sexual needs filled elsewhere (I’m bored of handling that myself.)

Mixed into this curious experiment lie my own values and morals, a plethora of “shoulds” and “should nots,” and my desire to balance my needs with my boundaries and self-care.

I have many questions and curiosities.

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