January 28, 2015

Let's Talk About Sex - Part 3

This week, we wrap up our series with Tina Nies, Holistic Sexuality Coach. In this post, we get to the heart of the matter -- how to actually talk about sex!

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To begin to build confidence and clarity around talking about sex, I shared a few simple, yet powerful, exercises in parts one and two that may be helpful to you. There are lots of ways to build your confidence and whatever you decide to try, remember to continue it as a practice. Like anything, talking about sex gets easier with practice. So that’s where we’re going now.

Let’s talk about sex!

In previous posts, I also gave some examples about how a child might explore life and even sex without even really knowing it (acting out scene in adult magazine and playing house). They were just quick mentions to maybe trigger some innocent memories of your own, without much discussion, without judgment.

What we talk about with friends and/or share with our partners regarding sex has a lot to do with what we learned and experienced around sexuality. Those early experiences also impact what we believe about ourselves and our sexuality, what is “right or wrong” regarding sex, even things we might secretly or not secretly be turned on by later in life.

I was raped and sexually abused from the age 12 to 16. I was date raped and escaped an attempted rape in my teens. A boy I liked in high school, after I wouldn’t perform oral sex on him, called me a slut at school. I dated (and loved) a ‘college guy’ in my senior year of high school, but he turned out to be leading a double life and was married with children. I was raped by a man I trusted while in college. My early experiences around sex and relationships were negative, really negative.

Sex felt good sometimes, sometimes sex was just something I did because I thought it was expected, but I had no idea what orgasms really were. I had no idea that sex could be amazing, intimate, healthy, and powerful. I just didn’t know. What I did know was about secrets, sex and secrets, secret sex, abusive sex (that my body naturally responded to), coerced sex, etc.

Whatever your experiences were, good or bad, whatever reactions and results you experienced, good or bad, whatever you felt, good or bad, all led you to how you relate to intimacy now. It’s okay to feel or think or fantasize about anything. (Of course, it’s not okay to act out in ways that harm others, but you’re not a bad person for having thoughts.) It’s also okay to want to let go of some of those thoughts. Talking about sex, all of it, good and bad, can help you get clear about what you want more of and what you want to let go of.

In the past, I could talk about sex… secretly. I kept secrets. I loved secrets. Sometimes the secrets around sex was an excitement for me. Honestly, secrets still excite me and that’s okay. It’s also okay to keep secrets. No one needs to or probably wants to know everything in my mind.

Today, I can talk about sex, even talk with clients about extreme sexual fantasies, with the casualness of talking about the weather. I can even talk about my own sexuality in that way. Yes I can talk about sex. I love talking about sex. And even as I write this, I’m improving my own level of talking about sex – because I practice talking about sex!

Recently, a group of teenage girls giggled when I told them that they can tell a boy what their expectations are. This conversation began with whether or not they believed they could reach their goals. Some expressed concern around preventing pregnancy and I told them it was “easy to not get pregnant.” I shared with them the idea that they can and should have conversations about what they want or don’t want LONG before they “fall in love” or are talked into having sex or their hormones take over during a hot date.

I’m glad I can say this to them at their age, regardless of whether or not they believe it to be true or if they ever tell a boy what I recommended, “I am not getting pregnant and I’m not getting an STD.”

I’m glad because their giggles and laughter told me that no one else was having this conversation with them in this way. They might hear, “use condoms, don’t be stupid, don’t have sex,” etc. But no one is telling them that they can and should take the lead and talk about sex with their partner.

You can take the lead in your relationships too!

When you know what you want to feel and you know the experiences you would like to create, and you express that to a partner BEFORE you have sex, that’s really powerful. And if that new partner can express to you their expectations and what they desire, that creates intimacy. If you’re already in a relationship, begin to have these conversations outside of the bedroom. It’ll make it easier to also have them in the bedroom.

If you are worried about reactions from your partner or something seems too intense, too personal, too much risk, then begin to open up the dialogue and talk about sex in general. If you rarely talk about sex, begin the next time you are intimate with your partner. Afterward (or during), share a complement about what you enjoyed most, maybe hint that you’d like to do more or try something a little different. This will be easier if you’ve been practicing saying “I’m grateful for you because…” every day. You will have opened some space.

If you’re ready to share something deeper, then just go out there, say it and get it.

Yes, it may be scary. Yes, you may be taking a risk. So, before you say it, plan it. Plan how you will say it – especially if this is something really new for you. Sometimes a TV show, movie, magazine article, etc. can help you get the conversation started. Mention an article you read, plan to watch a particular movie together, something where bringing up YOUR sex topic is easier.

Here’s an example that has come up more than once, (seems to be a popular issue). I was asked how in the world a man might share just how much he enjoys his wife’s intimate scent. He was afraid she would think he was weird, that she might be embarrassed, that she might start showering or using perfume or something to cover her scent. But he really wanted to be able to tell her and it became a problem for him that led to secretly sniffing her clothes. He was embarrassed and worried she might catch him and really freak out. It was affecting his life.

That is what our natural curiosities, preferences, fantasies, can do – affect our life – when we begin to feel bad and ashamed for something that is just simply a desire.

So in this case, I gave him reassurance that there was nothing wrong with him. In fact, our scent attracts us to each other in many ways. It’s natural. But it is possible that she would freak out if she caught him in the laundry. So, it was important to bring it up in a positive natural way.

I suggested he begin by complimenting her scent while they were having sex, telling her how much he desired her and how her scent turned him on. We practiced things he might say. We also practiced what he might say to her if she responded with something like “I’ve just worked all day, I can’t smell good or I need to shower.”

Think about what it is about sex that you want to talk about. Do you have a fantasy to share with your partner? Do you want to just get it out of your mind and out, to someone, somewhere?

If you’re not ready for a face-to-face conversation, there are websites where you can post anonymously. Just be careful - some sites and apps allow people to also comment anonymously and some people can be judgmental and mean. If you’re worried about electronic trace to your post, go to www.postsecret.com where you can write a secret on a postcard and mail it! Pictures of the postcards are posted on the website. It’s a great site to visit when you feel like you’re the only one with a secret. Some of the postcards are funny, some very deep and personal. Another site that allows any type of share, nothing is taboo, is www.mysecretpost.com. When you put it out there and you see it, it can be a tiny relief. It’s a step in opening up and talking about sex.

Like anything, getting more comfortable talking about sex takes practice. Start wherever you feel comfortable and go from there.

So, speak up and share a secret, a fantasy, whatever you desire with your partner, a friend, or even anonymously. If you’d like to build your confidence and self-acceptance, you can read my bestseller, 40 Day LoveFest for You, free, visit www.40DayLoveFest.com/freebook.




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Tina Nies is a Happiness Consultant, Mentor, and Holistic Sexuality Coach. She works with individuals & organizations to build self-love, acceptance, and respect as foundations for success and happiness through programs about Love, Smiles, and the Power of Choice. http://www.40daylovefest.com/

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