The fact of sexual need in man and animal is expressed in biology by theassumption of a "sexual impulse." This impulse is made analogous to theimpulse of taking nourishment, and to hunger. The sexual expressioncorresponding to hunger not being found colloquilly, science uses theexpression "libido."
Popular conception makes definite assumptions concerning the nature andqualities of this sexual impulse. It is supposed to be absent duringchildhood and to commence about the time of and in connection with thematuring process of puberty; it is supposed that it manifests itself inirresistible attractions exerted by one sex upon the other, and that itsaim is sexual union or at least such actions as would lead to union.
But we have every reason to see in these assumptions a veryuntrustworthy picture of reality. On closer examination they are foundto abound in errors, inaccuracies and hasty conclusions.
If we introduce two terms and call the person from whom the sexualattraction emanates the _sexual object_, and the action towards whichthe impulse strives the _sexual aim_, then the scientifically examinedexperience shows us many deviations in reference to both sexual objectand sexual aim, the relations of which to the accepted standard requirethorough investigation.

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