My Story: the Connection Movement — the Future of Love and Sex?

by marc on September 30, 2016


My name is Marc Beneteau. I am an author, sex and relationship coach and I am here to tell you my story and to invite you into a project which I feel very passionate about.

To start off, I was completely clueless about women and sex until I was 44 years old . I had done a lot of personal development work, therapy, consciousness raising, men’s work, community-based healing, etc. I had had a number of relationships but they really hadn’t gone so well and I felt at the time quite far from the prize, a deeply loving and deeply sexual relationship with a woman that would have continuity and a tolerable amount of craziness. And when I was honest with myself I knew THIS was really what I wanted the most. I became a little bit obsessed with this desire. I looked around and had not found a teacher. I could not even find a good book on the deeper aspects of sexual relationships which so fascinated me. I read David Deida and there was real wisdom there [show slide of Way of the Superior Man] but in terms of my real experience with women, I felt that Deida missed a lot.

Finally at the age of 44 I had my first big break. I met my now former wife Rebekah. We were together 9 years. She was with a teacher and we studied intensively with her community for 5 years. During this time I was also doing a lot of reading and research [showing slide with Baranco, Dieter Duhm, David Deida and Jerry Jud] and found other teachers as well who were talking about this problem of sexual loving. Here are a few of them and in this video I don’t have time to go into the content. I will only say I felt each of these brilliant teachers had a piece of the puzzle but I was unable to put it together into actually making a relationship work. Rebekah and I had a powerful connection but there were aspects that were extremely difficult. And then we split and I found myself at the age of 53, single, horny, looking for love, trying hard to connect but without much success. AGAIN.

And so I wrote a book, this is it. [showing book and then zoom to the back cover]. I felt that if I could put together and articulate everything that I had learned about men and women in my 30 year quest, it would at least help me and maybe help other men as well. Writing this book was huge for me. Probably the most important thing I had ever done in my life up to that point. Because it finally started to make sense. I can’t go into all the nuances and details of the content but let me give you a 60 second taste.

I believe there are two fundamental problems with sexual loving in our culture. The first is related to patriarchy, the thousand year old history of male violence and the demonization of women and sex. This is in part a problem I call “internalized oppression”, and here is my context for that term: “the guilt and the shame that is put upon for being human, for having human needs and human desires (including sex)”. I am curious if any of you relate to that.

And the second fundamental problem of sexual loving is that many men continue to be clueless in the arena of women and sex, just as I was. We have a situation in which many men are simply not able to “SHOW UP” for their women, to give them the quality of attention, real presence and the deep sex that will truly satisfy a woman, or any person in a dominant feminine polarity if you happen to be gay. This was my problem. I had too much attention on myself and I was arrogant and ignorant, fundamentally.

But the women really aren’t any wiser, in that very few of them have the self-awareness, communication skills and strategies to support and motivate their men into really showing up for them in their powerful masculine vulnerability and deep caring. And so we have a situation here of the blind leading the blind and this is one of the major causes of the disaster that are sexual relationships in America [Show NormSchriever article]. Studies show that 52% of Americans are sexually frustrated, and men and women are about as angry at each other as they have ever been.

Now this story does have a happy ending, although its not what you might expect. I did NOT find my true love and become happy ever after. I found something even better.

What I found is a network of people, men and women, who are committed to showing up for each other in their raw need and in their vulnerability and human brilliance, which is the capacity and deep desire that human beings have to love each other. A network of people who are sick and tired of feeling guilt and shame for being human and having human needs. Some people call this the Connection Movement and some call it Authentic Relating, [show map slide] and it is spreading like wildfire all over the world and particularly in America. A lot of these people are coalescing around two basic practices or group structures, the first is called Authentic Relating Games and the second is a practice called Circling. There is also a third very strong movement called Non-Violent Communication that is a very similar mindset.

So here is my project. I want to bring more sexual resources and practices into the Connection movement. Because you need to understand that sexuality is still very edgy and very raw EVEN in these developmental groups. Our collective internalized oppression around sexuality runs very, very deep. This is cutting-edge stuff. It is my belief that deep relational practices such as empathy and vulnerability obviously are critical for creating deep partnership and deep sex, but they are not enough. We need more information, more communication tools, and more shared reality around this fundamental problem of men and women getting along.

If you are interested in this and want to participate here is what I suggest. [Show Authentic relating resources slide] You can signup to my website ,, and then read the free brochure “What Women Want” and tell me what you think. This is something like my manifesto but its a draft version, there is a lot that I don’t know, that I am still learning. I need your help to create this movement. And finally and most importantly try and find an authentic relationship game night, or a circling group, or an NVC meeting near you. Because the bottom line is this, that sexual relationships really work best in community, indeed this may be the ONLY to make sexual relationships work in a modern world.

Thanks for listening. Consider me at your service. Feel free to reach out to me also at I hope to meet you in person and connect at some point.


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