Breathing is a natural human thing. Everybody does it. No one feels guilt or shame because their body wants to breathe. No one thinks breathing is dirty or wrong. No one feels shame about their lungs, the body parts in charge of breathing.
Sexuality is a natural human thing. Most everybody does it, has done it, or wishes they were doing it (except asexual folks ~ Go Aces!). And every one of us has come from the gift of life of the sexual body parts. Imagine for a moment if our sexual body parts were seen as shame-free as our lungs, or eyes, or elbows, or every other part of our body. Imagine if sexuality in our culture had as little baggage and complications as our feelings about breathing.
We’ve received bad messaging.
In our culture we’ve all received a tremendous amount of bad messaging about sex and our bodies. This messaging has taught people to have really bad or boring sex, as most people have no idea how pleasurable and profound it can be. It’s taught people to hate their genitals, and think there’s something dirty and/or inadequate about them. It’s taught us to objectify women ~ including women objectifying themselves with extremely harsh scrutinizing of their own appearance ~ and to use women’s bodies to manipulate people into buying stuff. It’s also taught us to vilify male sexuality, and to believe there are these two gender boxes that everyone’s supposed to fit into. This messaging has taught people to violate others sexually, and taught people to allow themselves to be violated, or even to feel shame when they were victimized. It has twisted and complicated very natural and amazing aspects of our humanity. And it has done much other damage. Unfortunately the messaging just keeps getting passed down unconsciously.
How do YOU feel?
How do you feel about your sexuality? About your genitals? Do you feel amazing? Do you feel guilty? Have mixed feelings? Compare it to how you feel about breathing. If you feel any less positive about your sexuality than you do about your breathing, you have an opportunity to fully accept and embrace this part of you. You can start on that path now. If you feel disconnected from your body or sexuality, or feel like it’s burdened with negative experiences from the past or negative feelings in the present, check out the first video at the bottom of this post for a simple way to start reconnecting with your sexuality and sexual body. (Or, this video is also good even if you already feel great about your sexuality and just want to take a few minutes to nourish and honor it.) And the second video below will help you reflect on your feelings about your sexual body, and give you a tool to help you shape the relationship you want with it. No matter what your sexual experiences are up to this point, you can always start now to have a fulfilling relationship with your sexuality. I started this blog today because I want to share information with people that will help you be vibrant, healthy, and super satisfied, sexually. I don’t want you to miss out on being empowered in this part of your life. It won’t change overnight, but stick with me, kid, and I’ll continue to share info that will help you return to your true sexual self.
So how did this happen?
How did it happen, that everything got fucked up about something that is supposed to be completely natural? For brevity’s sake we will just look at a couple of the reasons today. People blame the Puritans, but more so there are issues from the Victorian Era. Sexologists debate whether or not they were as repressed as we think them to be. It seems they were not. But at best, it was a mixed bag, and the harmful myths that came from that time are one of the reasons we are where we are.
The Victorian Era published massive amounts of public information about how female people lack sexuality. Oftentimes it either discounted women’s sexual pleasure completely, or said women do have sexual pleasure, “but hey, it’s not like they have a sex drive or anything.” And sex (which was mainly discussed in terms of hetero sex) was considered to be more for the man. Generations of this kind of thinking has, in part, created a mental block for many women to be able to feel their turn on or orgasm, creating guilt or shame; and, for other women it has created guilt or shame because they have a high libido and like to have a lot of sex. That era also encouraged women to just “lie back and let it happen” to a great extent, and many women today still regularly allow things to happen to their bodies during sex that they are not actually wanting.
Freud created a major issue by saying that the mature woman had only vaginal orgasms, not clitoral orgasms. Considering that 3 out of 4 women need stimulation of the clitoris to orgasm, this mentality stunted women’s orgasms for decades. (Not to mention, there are many many of kinds of orgasms, not just two, and the clit is actually ginormous and involved in many “vaginal” orgasms anyway. But that’s another post.)
The Victorian Era really cracked down on masturbation, at the extreme end producing bear-claw sorts of traps for penises, and clitoridectomies, i.e. female genital mutilation, for vulvas. And the rhetoric against people connecting with their sexual body parts was intense and prolific.
Some ideas about male sexuality were also problematic ~ like that it was merely uncontrollable, insatiable lust, that threatened to take over a man’s faculties if left unchecked. This idea still has influence today, and prevents most men from connecting with their full sexual self, and has other consequences for both men and women. For example, since women are supposed to be on the defensive sexually, if you combine that with the slut-shaming of women, it makes it a lot harder for men who like women to get laid.
Religious shaming and portrayals of women is another reason we are where we are.
American culture has been permeated with “religious” values that are sex-negative, body-negative, and misogynistic. (Too bad they’re not more Christ-like values.) For example, The Bible says that women who have sex before marriage should be stoned to death. The church, fortunately, doesn’t say that, but it does tell children and teenagers that they will go to Hell for ‘sins’ like sex before marriage. The subconscious awareness of women being stoned to death for having sex and the threat of eternal torture by fire for having sex both kinda put a damper on arousal.
The way women are treated as property in The Bible, as well as how the virgin is exalted and is the lone female presence truly appreciated, definitely helps to create a mindset in the collective cultural consciousness that is resulting in some bad, unhealthy sex. Also, of course, there is the body-shaming and woman-shaming in the story of the Garden of Eden.
So those are a couple of the reasons for the bad messaging.
I do want to mention that many same-sex couples actually tend to have more fulfilling sex than many hetero couples. One of the reasons is because, while people in any kind of relationship can have baggage, a lot of the millennia of baggage related to gender tends to be absent from these relationships. (Fortunately, I do see our society healing/evolving the gender stuff, slowwwly, but surely.)
Let’s do a little experiment.
A friend recently sent me an article about a mural of a penis painted on a wall in NYC. My heart was a bit sad to see anyone in an uproar about a depiction of an erect penis. “Think of the children!!” they say. Ummmm, did your kids not get here because of a hard penis? And a lovely vagina, of course. Do you really think that which created your children is a dirty thing? If so, ASK YOURSELF WHY. Obviously sexual activity is an adult activity meant for adults. But (as a former elementary school teacher for many years, I’m telling you) there’s truly no need to freak out if children see a painting of a penis. There’s no need to freak out if they see a real-life woman breastfeeding a baby. Stop passing the unnecessary shame on to the children.
K. So, what do you think/feel when you see this picture?
Now what about this one? Or this one? Or this one?
Do you think Michelangelo’s ‘David’ is dirty? Probably not. How did it feel when you saw the close-up pic of the cock part? What about the close-ups of his hand and knees? Also, importantly, notice how you’d feel if these were pictures of body parts made out of flesh and not out of stone. If you felt any differently about the sexual parts compared to other body parts, ASK YOURSELF WHY. Generally, it’s an emotional reaction you can let go of, not grounded in anything real. Now, if you’ve experienced trauma that is triggered by seeing genitals, that is a different situation. And there are a couple other situations where it’s NOT just conditioning. But I want to tell the masses, all parts of the human body are equally “good” and none of them are “bad.” And every part is as non-sensational as every other part. Yes, the sexual organs are very powerful and special. But so are your hands that help you do so much. So is your mouth that eats for you, and talks, and breathes. And so on. There’s no reason the sexual body parts should be seen as any different than any other part of you.
The essence of Innocence ~
Many people associate the word “innocence” with a meaning of not knowing, or ignorance. But if we look at the etymology, it actually has a different meaning, which is more like, “harmlessness.” It comes from the Latin root “nocere” which means “to hurt, harm,” and adding the “in” at the beginning, which means “without,” creates the Latin adjective “innocens” and has meanings/nuances of “harmless, blameless, inoffensive, guiltless,” and even “virtuous.” You can start associating the feeling of innocence with your sexual body parts and your sexuality. Let go of the idea that your genitals or your nipples or your pubes or any part of you is dirty or shameful. Let go of guilt about what you want (or don’t want) sexually. Quit vilifying these parts of yourself.
When you think of the quality of innocence, what does it feel like? Just feel that for a moment. Now think of shame, what does that feel like? What does guilt feel like? What about embarrassment, or the feeling of not being good enough? Shame, guilt, embarrassment, and feelings of inadequacy are the things people need to shed, to completely release and let go of. If you feel any of those things about your sexual body or sexuality, I want you start practicing feeling innocence instead. One way you can do this is to feel the feeling of innocence, and while you’re feeling that, think of your desire. Or reflect on innocence and think of penetration. Or your vulva. Or anal sex. Or that threesome you always wanted to have. Etc. Also, reflect on who and what taught you to feel shame and guilt and at the same time, feel the feeling of innocence, and let that take over. Start re-wiring your psyche so that you don’t have to be bogged down with those negative associations anymore, and instead live in a place that allows you to experience your sexuality with the light, wholesome, harmless, blameless, fresh, free feeling that you feel with the quality of innocence.
How to get on the path to realizing your amazing sexuality ~
Get back to the bare essence of this life force within you. We can connect with our sexuality in various ways. My upcoming blogs will help with this and with the things below, but to get you started thinking about it ~ One way is to take it back to the realm of play. Like the analogy of when you were a kid in the sandbox. Think about what’s truly fun for you, and just enjoy playing in each moment, without worry of an end goal. Also, don’t worry about how you look, or about “performing.” Be authentic. Learn what you want and don’t want, and learn to express that. Be in integrity. Be brave and mature enough to have conversations about STIs and pregnancy if you need to. Give and receive mutual respect, even if it’s just a one-night stand. When you are feeling lust, own it and celebrate this life-affirming sensation! Or when you feel like someone is moving too fast, own it, and tell them you’d like to go slower. Be yourself. Be honest, with yourself and with your partners.
And remember, when we judge others, we judge ourselves. Stop slut-shaming. Stop fat-shaming. If you ever put people (including yourself) down for their bodies or sexuality, catch yourself next time you go to do it, and consider reining that attitude in and shifting to something more liberating for everyone.
Forgive yourself for making mistakes, or having shitty sex just to please someone, or taking advantage of someone when you were much younger and less aware. Let yourself off the hook if you feel guilty because of your religion, or your parents, or because you don’t want sex as often as your partner, or because you want it more often. Embrace your genitals just the way they are. And you don’t have to love your body if your feelings about your body are more complicated than that, but your body does deserve respect from everyone, including you.
This is just the beginning.
What I want is for people to strip away the layers of bad messaging they’ve gotten and get to the heart of their sexuality. The true essence of your sexuality is wholesome and natural. It has the capacity to bring you tremendous joy and good health. It has the capacity to do such an amazing thing as create new life, OR be channeled into other powerful creative endeavors. I want you to be having the kind of sex you want, that is fulfilling and extremely pleasurable, where you walk away from virtually every experience feeling holistically good and deeeeeply gratified! I’m so happy for you if you are deciding now to start on this path of reclaiming your sexuality, your body, your voice, your desire, and I’m honored to support you in empowering yourself in this way. Keep checking back here ’cause there’s more to COME! 😉
And I love reading comments so please feel free to leave any comments below. Blessings upon you and your path.
Videos I made for you ~