I remember being in college and creating a show for campus TV station called “Ask the Sexperts!” We created a mini Love Line where students could call or email in with their questions and a panel of students would answer their questions! Looking back- none of our panelists were actually experts, they were just students who really enjoyed sex! Little did I know, but this was a major foreshadowing in my life because about 13 year later, I became a Certified Sex Therapist!
People love asking questions about this part of my work, so I thought I’d chronicle the answers for all of you!
Is it really weird to talk about sex all day long?
I actually think it’s weirder that we don’t talk about sex. People think about sex often so why should it feel so odd to talk about it? I think its because our society still feels that sex is a taboo and there is so much shame wrapped up in our sexuality. Shame, like many things, grows in darkness and isolation. So we don’t talk about sex and the shame/mystery grows…and we still don’t talk about sex. I will tell you that once you start talking about sex, it feels easier and way more natural to talk about it with partners, with your kids, or with your friends.
Isn’t sex supposed to hurt?
No. Sex is supposed to feel pleasurable. If sex hurts, please go see a medical doctor first to rule out any biological or physical issues. If there is nothing going on, go talk to a sex therapist! Telling young people that sex is supposed to hurt has done harm to people who put up with painful sex because they think it’s normal.
If you could change anything about sex education, what would you change?
I love this question. I would change so much! I would teach about pleasure! I would teach that heterosexual sex is not the only (or the optimal) type of sex so that hetero/cis-normative sex doesn’t become everyone’s definition of sex. I would over-rule the “baseball” metaphor and teach how all types of sexual touch is important without assigning a hierarchy to penetrative sex. I would teach that kink and fantasies are healthy.