Did you know that? Well, it does make sense, doesn’t it? Sexuality is an important topic for most people but at the same time, we haven’t really learned how to talk about it very well (or at all), especially when it’s not going as well as we would like it to.
Sexual issues actually come up a lot in my online counselling sessions. The distance the screen provides (and the fact that my clients and I are usually in very different parts of the world) really helps to open up about difficult topics.
Here are some of the resources I frequently recommend to my clients who would like to know more about their own sexual issues, about what is “normal” or not and who would like to work on addressing those issues in a more constructive manner.
Come as You Are
Emily Nagoski is one of the leading researchers on the topic of female sexuality, something that has been traditionally ignored by the scientific community. In Come As You Are, Nagoski offers an evidence-based discussion of female sexuality, exploring how women are different in their sexual desires.
Nagoski states that every woman is different and that understanding one’s body and needs is essential for a healthy sexual life. Desire for sex depends a lot about the context: the feeling of safety, the place, the other person; and each woman needs to find how her desire manifests. Nagoski discusses in detail her dual model of sexual response, which consists of a “brake” and an “accelerator”. The accelerator responds to sexually relevant information and the brake is the system that slows down sexual desire. Nagoski offers a wonderful, easy-to-understand description of female sexuality and empowers women to take control of their desires. She validates every woman and their experience as normal, using cutting-edge research as her foundation. Come As You Are is an honest, sensitive, and practical guide to female sexuality that will be useful for any woman who wants to understand what turns her on (and off!).
«I am done living in a world where women are lied to about their bodies; where women are objects of sexual desire but not subjects of sexual pleasure; where sex is used as a weapon against women; and where women believe their bodies are broken, simply because those bodies are not male. And I am done living in a world where women are trained from birth to treat their bodies as the enemy.» – Emily Nagoski
Wanting Sex Again
Many marriages suffer from the lack of sex or, rather, the lack of passion. Millions of women find that their sex life is not what it used to be, that there is something missing. Wanting Sex Again is a book by recognized sex specialist Laurie Watson who offers proven methods to spark passion again. Laurie Watson puts her twenty years of clinical experience to good work by giving personal and clinical accounts and research-based methods to make a couple find their sexual thrill once more. The book discusses in-depth the factors that can inhibit and promote sexual desire, like culture and stress, including those that are not usually discussed with such openness. The author also openly talks about the challenges and changes that come with age and impact all individuals at some point, hurting their sexual desire.
Laurie Watson’s earnest and experienced voice gives women the opportunity to reconnect with their passion and rekindle a healthy sexual life within the context of marriage regardless of the problems that the women face. She normalizes sexuality for older women and explains how we can live our best sexual lives despite the challenges of ageing. Watson’s book is a must for any woman hoping to make sex enjoyable and passionate again.
Where should we begin?
Psychotherapist and bestselling author Esther Perel is one of the most unique psychologists who specialize in relationships. After her books Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence and The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity became international phenomena, she has helmed a new, fresh project: the Where Should We Begin? podcast. This audio series boldly explores intimate and taboo topics in a respectful way, talking to the couples who have offered their experiences to help others. The listeners get to explore and experience the relationships of many different couples through the three seasons of the show. Guided by a true specialist in relationships, the podcast is a wonderful opportunity to reflect and learn more about the way we engage with our partners.
Sex Gets Real
Sex Gets Real is a weekly podcast about all things sex and relationships. The host, Dawn Serra, is someone who has specialized in teaching sex to others and coaching people on how to develop their sexualities. Dawn wants her listeners to experience their own pleasure and develop a strong connection to their own bodies, making sex a rich and varied experience. Through more than 270 episodes, Dawn and her guests explain how to experience sex and teach the listeners things that nobody ever bothered to. The podcast touches on the emotional side of relationships as well and helps us develop the necessary skills to enjoy our sexuality, set our own boundaries, and discuss intimate topics with our partner. Dawn’s approach is gentle and open, shining the spotlight on all those questions we rarely dare to ask but that can make or break our sexual enjoyment.
Do you know of any other great resources covering sexuality and sexual issues? Are you maybe unhappy with your sex life yourself and feel like it might be time to do something about it? How about talking to a psychologist who won’t judge and will help you figure out what you could do?