Page 14 Chapter 13:
Is There Sex in Russia?
When many years ago Phil Donahue held his first talk show with an American and Soviet audience, one of the elderly women participating in the show stood up and declared with pride, “There is no sex in the USSR!” These words took a life of their own, and after the roaring laughter and jokes died down, many people started seriously asking whether there really was any sex in the USSR.
Obviously, it was not the case that Soviet citizens did without any sex at all. But what was taking place in Soviet bedrooms could hardly be described as sex in the Western understanding of the word.
It is important to make clear first that Soviet people did not have any bedrooms — at least the majority of population. At best, couples slept in one of two or three communal rooms, without any privacy at all. Many more lived and slept in the same room with their children and/or elderly parents.
Since grown-up children lived as a rule with their parents, it was almost impossible to have a “trial” marriage in Russia. Of course some people still engaged in premarital sexual relations, but it was sex in a hurry, in the most inconvenient and inappropriate places.
An amorous couple couldn’t even find respite in a hotel room for an evening. The hotel and motel business was badly underdeveloped. Hotels did not have enough rooms even for visitors from other cities, much less local couples in search of privacy. Besides, they allowed only registered couples to stay in the same room. A marriage certificate was required when renting a room.
Other roadblocks included the official puritanical policy of the socialist government regarding sex, a complete lack of information about sexual relations and contraceptives, and rampant alcoholism, abusiveness, and selfishness among Russian men. Donahue’s guest was probably right — there was no sex in the USSR.
Even before the Revolution, Russia had been a puritanical country on the question of sex. In the lower classes, sex had only one function — conception and the birth of a child. Only the Russian Orthodox Church did not sanction that kind of sex. While sex for the sake of pleasure, even between married couples, was not openly denounced as a sin, it was highly discouraged. Abstention from sexual relations has always been considered a virtue in the Orthodox philosophy.
There are many days in the Orthodox calendar when sexual relations are not permitted. Monasticism and hermitage were widespread. Sexual chastity was considered fundamental to human purity. Small wonder that with such an attitude, virginity was observed and honored. If a girl lost her virginity before marriage, or gave birth to an unwed child, she was guaranteed a miserable and disgraced existence. Such girls often committed suicide, preferring death to eternal shame.
Russians’ history of chastity in sexual relations finds its expression in the Russian language. In it, there are no proper words to describe sexual intercourse and other aspects of sexual relations. There are either obscenities or clinical terms — nothing in between. Even highly educated people in past centuries used the much richer and more figurative French language when discussing intimate relations. “Goodness! How can we say this in Russian?” they wondered.
Thus it became a custom — talking about sex was called talking “about this.” And with this tradition, talking about sex has not been considered a proper topic of open conversation in Russia. Even now traditional girls feel awkward when they have to discuss such — as they call them — “ticklish” subjects.
Noble Russians, especially those who were close to a royal court, had a different attitude towards sex. They were under the heavy influence of European — mostly French and German — culture and morality. Tsars and their favorites were famous for their corrupt morals and numerous affairs. In Russian upper classes double morality dominated.
Boys from noble families typically began active sexual lives during their teenage years. Often their experience began with young enslaved peasant girls who belonged to the family and were obliged to satisfy the whims of the young lord. The young lord’s parents closed their eyes to the “pranks” of their “child” and did not consider such behavior improper.
Later, during study at the University or service in the army, young noblemen enjoyed themselves with gypsies and prostitutes. Only after reaching 30 — or older — did they feel that they had sown their wild oats and had their fill of the bachelor’s life. And thus came the period of looking for a decent wife from upper classes.
But even though Russian men from noble society almost never married before the age of 30, they generally chose their brides among girls who were only 16-18 years old. A 24-25 year old girl was considered in Russia a spinster. This tradition still exists in some provincial Russian towns and villages.
In the old days, as soon as a girl reached the age of 14-15, her parents began an active search for a potential husband for her. Sometimes young people were engaged in childhood. According to the Russian traditions, parents were supposed to give their daughter a dowry. The richer the dowry, the more chances she had to find a worthy husband.
Girls without a dowry, however beautiful and smart they were, often remained spinsters. There is a simple reason for this. According to Russian law, all noblemen had to serve their country as military officers for several years, and many of them were killed during wars and conflicts. So noble, young, single men were always in deficit in Russia. There were always several young noble brides for one noble gentleman to choose from.
Perhaps stemming from those times, a code of behavior began to take shape. Like in Victorian times in America, noble Russian women were supposed to behave like ladies. Open displays of emotions and sexuality were considered attributes of lower class in a woman. A lady was supposed to be always reserved, meek, submissive to the will of the husband, and immaculately faithful. Russian society developed stereotypes of good and bad women — “Madonna” and “prostitute” — which took firm root.
About the time of the October Revolution, a sexual revolution also took place. It first spread among students and the bohemian class. Feminists and other liberal women helped spread the fire. The most “advanced” women of Russia were fond of the idea of sex as a purely physiological need, the so-called “theory of a glass of water” (the desire of sex was believed to be similar to a physiological thirst, which needed to be satisfied instantly). Traditional marriage came to be considered a bourgeois prejudice.
After the victory of socialism in Russia, the puritanical communists suppressed the sexual revolution. According to the “Moral Code of Communism Builders,” sex and romance once again were transferred to the bottom of people’s vital needs. For married “comrades” it was something condoned, but not discussed.
In recent years a new sexual revolution has been rapidly developing in Russia. As in any revolution, the first thing it did was to attack and undermine old morals. Young people became its first victim, as an “anything goes” attitude has become more and more commonplace throughout the country.
The good news is that the truly traditional Russian women have remained free of the destructive influence of this “revolution.” It seems that the heart of the traditional woman only becomes stronger and purer under the pressure of temptation.
So, what then is the attitude toward sex of traditional Russian women? For them, physical intimacy with a man is the highest stage of spiritual closeness. In no way do they view sex as a base, physiological act. As with so many other aspects of their character, they think first of the feelings and needs of the man.
Personal pleasure ranks second for them. Not particularly experienced in sex, they do not expect any super performances from their partners. In frank terms, they are not concerned with the amount of orgasms they achieve, and most would not even know that there are four distinct types of orgasms possible for them to have.
They are natural in their love and do not view sex as a sport or achievement. Men are very comfortable and confident with them. Traditional women value tenderness, caressing, touching, and hugging much more that the sexual intercourse itself. In traditional Russian culture it is not common to express one’s feelings in public, for example, to kiss in the presence of other people, hug in public, or stroke the partner on the back.
But, it does not mean that such caresses and endearments are something strange for Russian women. They are just modest and well-mannered, and prefer that the relations between two people should be really intimate and closed from other people’s eyes.
That is why, when making an acquaintance with a traditional woman, you must be a gentleman. Do not try to initiate intimate relations with her on the first evening of your acquaintance, or soon after. Do not embarrass her and touch her in public. She may not refuse you if she already loves you, but her upbringing and morality will ensure that she will be uncomfortable with your behavior. Show her respect and patience. The more you do, the more appreciative and grateful she will be.
Russian men can sometimes be egotistical and primitive in their approach to sex, and do not think much of the feelings of their partners and wives. That is why, for most Russian women, their experiences with men have left negative feelings and humiliation.
Unfortunately, many of them begin to think that intimate relations with men always result in pain, suffering, and the sacrifice of their own dignity. It’s your job to prove to her that there are still gentlemen in the world who understand how to treat a lady. A woman will be pleasantly surprised at your Western manners and delicacy in intimate matters.
Most likely you will be her first real man, even if you marry a divorced woman with children. If you give her the time she needs, she will learn to feel confident in your arms, and will open her true passionate and gentle nature for you. Some of my clients tell me approximately the following: “All right. I understand I need to be a gentleman. But we have so little time to get to know each other.
I cannot buy a pig in a poke. I don’t want to marry a woman without testing our sexual compatibility first.” I will tell you what I usually say: If sexual compatibility is more important to you than the rest of what she will offer, then you do not need a traditional woman and traditional marriage. You will get better results if you meet a liberated and sexually experienced woman. Forget Russia. Go to Los Angeles.
I have never heard that a really happy and harmonic marriage was built primarily on the sexual compatibility of its partners. On the other hand, a well-matched couple always achieves harmony in intimate relations. Sexual harmony is much more based on spiritual and mentally harmony than you may think. It is a combination of emotions, spirituality, and mind.
Without these, sex is little more than animalistic pairing. Traditional Russian women believe that one has to come to intimacy gradually. One cannot skip one or two stages in the development of relations. First, souls have to come to unity; then, minds; and only then, — bodies.
As for Russian women themselves, they have such strong intuition and “internal vision” that they can love a man just for his soul and heart. That it spiritual love, and it is the highest love that one could hope to achieve. The traditional Russian woman who will love you will not love you for your bedroom eyes, your sexy butt, or your strong physique. She will love you for who you are, unconditionally.
She will help you to see yourself in a different way — the way you were conceived and made by our Creator. This love will purify and ennoble you, and you will understand the magic that a traditional Russian woman can bring to your life.