Apr 252015
 

Welcome to the Atlas of Erotic Anatomy & Arousal.

This is a short clip from Squirts and Gushes – There She Blows. 


The intention with this video series is to help you better understand how our bodies work and respond to pleasure and arousal.
This video series is inspired by the questions I receive from my clients in private sessions and at my seminars.
So many people just do not know how their or their partners bodies work sexually – after all why would they? Most of us don’t learn about sex at school, and if we do, its always about making babies – not the actual reasons people have sex – for pleasure and connection
This is the sex education you should have got at school, but probably never did.
There is so much more to great sex than just genitals, but this is a great place to start.
The more you know, the more adventure you can have.

Due for release in June 2015, click here to subscribe to be the first to know when it’s available for purchase online

Vulvapalooza

vulva
Welcome to Vulvapalooza. In this module you will learn everything you need to know about the vulva from a sex and pleasure perspective.
Whether you have one or love someone with one or would like to know more about them, this video will show you what you need to know about what they are, how they work, and eliminate the mystery often associated with them. At the end of this video, you will be a pussy expert!

The Penis: Mightier Than The Sword

Capture
In this module you will learn everything you need to know about the penis, balls and prostate from a sex and pleasure perspective.
Whether you have one or love someone with one or would like to know more about them, this video will show you what you need to know about what they are, how they work and bust a few myths about their simplicity, and instead showing you their wonder. At the end of this video, you will be a cock expert!

Squirts & Gushes: There She Blows

orgasm
In this module we travel into the hidden world of the G Spot, Orgasm and Ejaculation. Still hotly debated and misunderstood, squirting is an experience like no other. We’ll discover what it is and is not, it’s relationship to pleasure, and how to make it happen for you.
Whether you’ve tried it, want to try it or have no idea what this is about this video will lead you on a journey of sexual discovery deep within the heart of the vagina to long forgotten lands and beyond.

Butt: That’s Not All


Out of the closet and into our lives, anal is the new black! Whether you’ve tried it and loved it, whether you’ve tried it and hated it, there is so much more to anal pleasure than meets the eye, and this module is designed to bring you beginners knowledge in order to ensure your transition into to delights of anal pleasure is fun, healthy and pain free.
By the end of this video you’ll know everything you need to know to have hot and pleasurable pain free anal sex.

Apr 242015
 
Masturbation is a really important part of our sexuality. Practicing masturbation can actually expand and enhance our erotic experiences with others. Who woulda thunk it?
Any of you that are familiar with my work know that I am a great advocate of deep, focussed sensual sex as a pathway to heightened orgasms, deeper connections and and more powerful erotic experiences that leave you longing for more, more, MORE! Here are a few tips to spice up your masturbation to improve your technique and bring more BANG to your bedroom escapades!

 

Any of you that are familiar with my work know that I am a great advocate of deep, focussed sensual sex as a pathway to heightened orgasms, deeper connections and and more powerful erotic experiences that leave you longing for more, more, MORE! Here are a few tips to spice up your masturbation to improve your technique and bring more BANG to your bedroom escapades!

1. Practice slowing your masturbation down Why? You get to focus on different parts of your genitals or nipples. For example, if you are accustomed to quick wanking or using a vibrator to get off, practice using a slower technique and notice which parts of your genitals and nipples are more sensitive than others.

2. Penises. Instead of just jerking off to orgasm, try stimulating one part of your cock at a time.  A lot of  folks find the frenulum (this is the yummy little triangle in the underside of your penis where it joins the foreskin  – where it is or was) is really a delicious spot to touch with the pad of your forefinger. Using lube, make little circles on this area  and experiment with pressure and speed.

2a. Practice extending your orgasm by getting yourself turned on, but just before you feel you are about to come, take your hands away and shift your breathing to your nose only. This helps you control your ejaculation giving you more choice about how you come and when. Practicing this regularly is a great way to train yourself to last longer during partnered sex.

3. Labia. Take the time to get to know your labia. Both inner and outer. If you haven’t had a good look at yours, may May the month to get out a mirror and have a look around. Using lube really explore the areas you mightn’t usually, like the area between the labia and the forchette, the area where the lips meet at  their lowest point, above the anus. How long does it take for your pussy to start to swell?  Take selfies of your pussy before, during and after arousal – to see how much it varies during these stages of arousal.

3a. Rock around the Clit Clock. (I learnt this one from my pal Barbara Carrellas) Imagine your clit is a clock face  Spend 2 minutes making tiny circles with your finger on each point of the clock face.Use lube but not too much – it desensitises. Which o’clocks feel best to you? A lot of us find the area between 5 o’clock and 7 o’clock the most divine.

4. Instead of racing to orgasm, see how much stimulation you can take and how long it takes you to get to maximum wetness, hardness and arousal. For a lot of us it can be a while. You might surprise yourself at just how much pleasure you can have. After all, why scoff down a delicious meal. Learn to savour each nibble as if it were your last!

All this masturbation and attention to detail gives you more knowledge of your body and how it works and what it loves. The more you know the more you can share with others. To learn more tips like this, subscribe to my newsletter or join me in May for my couples workshop Embodied Connections

*This article also appears with permission on adultmatchmaker.com.au

Apr 162015
 
pleasure map

In my practice as a qualified sex therapist & coach, I meet many women who struggle with their sexual pleasure. After all, we live in a culture that really doesn’t value and prioritise pleasure in any way, so sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start. But the truth is, it doesn’t have to be this way.

Pleasure for each of us is subjective. What one person likes, another may not. So it stands to reason that knowing what you like is a great way to help you better understand what pleasure may feel like for you. After all, the only person who can decide this is, well, you!

What Creates Pleasure?

Although simple enough, pleasure is made of a variety of components; the 3 most prominent are thoughts, feelings and sensations. Sometimes thoughts, especially restrictive or distracting thoughts, tend to dominate our intimate encounters which can prevent us from really experiencing what else is required to create the pleasure we seek.

pleasure map

According to Sally, a 26 year old professional single woman, “The minute we start kissing, my mind drifts to work, emails and even Facebook. It’s almost like a switch goes on as soon as sex starts”. Susan 34, also struggles with intrusive thoughts, but notes “I start thinking about my body and how it must look to him. Then I wonder why he even likes me. On the surface, I seem OK. I have a good job and great friends, but with sex I’m not very confident. I can’t imagine a guy like him would even like me’’. Such thoughts can really separate the three vital components of pleasure, making enjoyment very elusive.

The following tips are based on the practices I use with my clients to help them engage more with their sexual pleasure, and assist in minimizing the distracting thoughts that hold them back, while maximising their feelings and sensations to access the erotic satisfaction they seek.
1. Permission
One of the biggest inhibitors to pleasure is permission. I’m not talking about permission from our partners, parents or friends (although that would be nice), I am referring to permission from the person most able to grant us the opportunity to explore sex. Ourselves. Permission means allowing ourselves to be curious about sex, our body, our thoughts and feelings, without judgement. Experimenting with the idea that sex is fundamentally OK, is a great way to start exploring our own sexuality.
2. Focus
One of the things that holds us back from experiencing pleasure is a mind that is jumping and racing and has difficulty staying focussed. By practicing focusing on sensations, rather than racing thoughts, the mind has a chance to slow down and feel the body. Learn to focus by taking 3 deep belly breaths each time you want to connect more deeply to yourself. Take the time to slow down. The body has a better chance of being included and really recognising the sensations of pleasure.
3. Touch
Touch is a fundamental human tool of communication but not all of us are confident with giving or receiving touch.
• Start alone, close your eyes and bring your attention to your hands.
• Bring the awareness gradually to your palms and breathe deeply three times. You may notice a tingling sensation in your hands as you do this.
• Raise one hand up near to your check without touching. Feel the warmth radiating from the centre of your hand against your face.
• Begin to breathe in and out more deeply. With each breath invite your body to experience the breath as if it were stoking the furnace within your hand, making the heat more pulsating than before.
• Place your hand only your cheek, gently. Palm first, then fingers. Add pressure, but not too much, but more than a light touch. Notice how your face responds to a firm embrace of a warm hand.
• Breathe. And just notice how it feels to be touched firmly and with intention, palm first.
• Apply that touch to other parts of your body. Notice how your body responds.

Embodied Connections

Join me for a life-changing, intimate weekend workshop for lovers. Journey deep into connections you never knew were possible. Places strictly limited.

 

4. Look
Many of us never take the time to really look at our bodies. For many of us it is hard, really hard. If you are one of these people you might want to skip this part. If you feel up for a challenge I invite you to have a look at yourself in the mirror.
• First your face. Notice the features, lips, eyes, hair.
• When you’re ready look at your body, with your eyes and the reflection in the mirror. Stop and notice each part.
• As you focus on each part, notice the sensations and feelings that come. Allow them to be present without judging, and continue to breathe.
• Take out a hand mirror and look at your genitals. For many of us they are the most sensitive part of our bodies and the gateway to so much pleasure.
• If it feels right, place your warm palm over your genitals and experiment with pressure and sensation. Which parts are more responsive to touch? Look in the mirror and see how your genitals respond to touch. Do they change over time? Notice the difference after 10 then 20 minutes of touch.

5. Prioritise
Prioritising sex doesn’t even have to involve another person. By just acknowledging within ourselves that sex is something we would like to know more about, we are on the way to making the fundamental changes that hold us back from being the abundant and sensually confident people we long to be. By making pleasure a habit, it starts to become something we look forward too, much like making a decision to eat well or exercise more, committing to pleasure can feel a little challenging at first, but the rewards can be totally life changing.

Mar 272015
 

MBGIn modern times, the truth is not everybody can be or wants to be in long-term relationships. So many factors are affecting our lives these days, that casual options are available to us which even 10 years ago seemed unfeasible. So – we have moved on – but have our dating rituals? Check out my guide to getting the sex you want in a casual way. Click image to my latest piece on MindBodyGreen.

 

Mar 222015
 

One of the most basic forms of human connection is touch. For so many of us it’s hard to imagine life without it. From erotic passion to profound love, there is no deeper expression of affection, emotion and eroticism. Sadly, so many of us are touch starved, not only because we don’t touch, but because we just don’t really know how to really give and receive touch.

iStock_000016631882XLarge

Seems absurd, doesn’t it? After all touch is at the centre of what good sex is about, but when was the last time you were touched, I mean really touched, in ways that rippled right through your body, in ways that left you yearning, in ways that left you  feeling met, nourished and fulfilled?

If your response is don’t know or can’t remember then read on.

 Embodied touch is a meaningful way of integrating the body with the mind (intentions and thoughts) and emotions to create more passion, potency and connection to your sexual expression. The emphasis is on not only giving touch with intention, intensity and awareness, but also mindfully receiving a lovers’ touch. In other words, embodied touch is a two-way dance between lovers that ignites the flames of desire and keeps them burning long after the honeymoon is over.

It’s easy to mistakenly think that receiving touch is like receiving a massage, you can just drift away and zone out. But sadly, such a disconnection between giver and receiver is often the cause of erotic breakdowns between lovers.

How easy is it to forget where you are or what you are doing in so many of life’s activities; eating, driving, on the bus / train / tram, on social media – you name it, our lives are geared to make us zone out. In fact, businesses make a fortune off the fact that’s exactly what we do. Especially when we are over worked and over stimulated.

So what’s the fall out?  Partners tend to get distracted. Sex becomes mechanical or non-existent. Attention is cool and lovers drift away from each other rather than move toward each other; toward the connection they most deeply desire.

But it doesn’t have to be like this. So what’s the antidote?

Embodied Touch.

In other words, placing your attention on your intention.

Wherever you put your attention, you will experience greater awareness. This is true in all aspects of life. Business, family, sporting skills, learning languages, friendships, finances, pleasure – wherever there is attention, there is change.

Creating the kind of connection you long for is absolutely possible and doesn’t require incense, fasting or endless hours of yoga. No trekking in Nepal or countless hours of study required. Touching your lover as if they were the most precious thing on the planet, and allowing yourself to surrender into that moment, where time stops and you become one with all of who you are, is completely possible at any time you want it.

If embodied touch is so simple, why then so very rare?

Because the truth is, most of us have never really learnt nor experienced the wonder of deeply connected and meaningful loving touch. We don’t learn it at school and we don’t see it on TV or in the movies. We may have learnt to emphasise touch in our homes growing up, but this is rare. The bottom line is we don’t live in a world that values it. So it gets forgotten. We harden up and get on with it, forgetting what it is our bodies need, or never knowing how exquisite erotic connection through simple touch can really be.

But don’t despair.To get you on your way, here are a few essentials of embodied touch you can try, even by yourself, to experience the pleasure of uniting body, mind and heart.

  1. Starting Off.

Decide who will give and who will receive first. We often make the mistake of trying to give and receive at the same time. Instead, avoid the confusion and be clear about where to focus your attention. It’s hard to both give and receive touch with full awareness, at the same time.

If touching alone, place your awareness on one role at time, then switch. For example, if touching your arm with your hand, focus on the sensation of what the hand and fingers can feel first. Then switch to the arm; the recipient of the touch. How does that part feel being touched. Shift your awareness to different parts of your body that are touching and being touched.

In pairs, the receiver can choose to sit or lie down, eyes closed. The giver places *themself comfortably close enough for sustained touch. It’s important to find a comfy position, as being uncomfortable will take your mind off the job and cause you to lose focus by trying to get comfortable.

  1. The Essence of Presence.

Breath is a core component of connected, embodied eroticism. In fact, great sex is created by attention, but sustained by breath. Wherever there is breath there is life. Dead people don’t breathe folks! It’s true!

Synchronise your breath by observing or ‘feeling into’ each other’s bodies’ rise and fall with breath. Allow yourself some time for this. This process also allows you the opportunity to help slow your mind down.

Ideally the giver matches their breath with the receiver as a way of creating a safe container the receiver can be held in. Even with partners who have been together a long time, the idea of safety might seem absurd, but I am not talking about safety here as in ‘safe from danger’, but rather the safety that comes with not having to perform or be on show – being able to deeply relax into an experience without worrying about ‘doing it right’. This may take a few moments until it settles into a relaxed and ‘natural’ state.

If alone, pay attention to your own breath, the rise and fall of your chest and abdomen until you start to relax.

Practice the secrets of embodiment in this weekend masterclass

Join me for a profound instructional weekend masterclass for lovers. Spaces strictly limited.

 

  1. Be Present.

Focus your awareness on yourself. Take a few minutes to notice how you’re feeling, what you’re thinking and what you’re experiencing in your body. Without judging it, just acknowledge its presence. Whether giving or receiving, this process of ‘tuning in’ or observing yourself, means bringing this quality to the dance between you and informs the way you touch or receive. When you are more aware of how you are, you are better able to share that with others.

  1. Put Your Attention On Your Intention.

This helps to bring purpose to what you’re doing and allows the receiver to be more receptive and aware. Receivers can state (verbally) what they would like; sensual touch, arousing touch, genital touch, basic massage etc  and givers can bring all of their attention to this request to offer the kind of touch required. Intention might be anything from relaxing and connecting, expressing love, letting go of the day or facilitating a profound orgasm. Studies have even proven that when we give and receive touch with intention we are able to communicate more intuitively than with words. If touching alone, set an intention for the experience – it may be something like permission to experience pleasure  for its own sake without shame, to experience a different kind of erotic sensation ( do something out of your normal masturbation routine) or  maybe experience masturbation without ejaculation.

  1. Touch From The Heart.

Begin the connection by becoming aware of your own heart (or heart beat if you can).

Givers place the left hand over the heart of the receiver. Palm first, then fingers. This way we are setting up a direct line from the giver’s heart, down the left arm into the heart of the receiver. You’re literally connected by the heart.

Check the breath is still synchronised and take a moment to feel your hand on your partner’s chest.

Slowing everything down is vital. Place the other hand on a part of the body that feels appropriate. The lower abdomen can often feel good. Ask if you need to. Apply the same ‘palm first’ process as a way of creating a stable and deep connection.

Receivers, feel the warmth of your partner’s hand and allow your heart to open and move toward it. Stay with this moment as long as required. Sometimes just having one’s heart touched can be a profoundly humbling and tender experience. If touching alone, use the same process to touch and honour your own heart. Don’t be surprised if you experience deep waves of pleasure and sensation from this process alone.

  1. Touch With Reverence.

Maintaining the palm to body connection, slowly move your hand(s) around the receiver’s body, sliding** with mindful awareness of the grounding sensation of the palm and breathing together.

Invite the receiver to receive ‘actively’ by breathing or releasing gentle sighs to show they are present to the touch and not drifting off into their own thoughts.

Givers, allow your intuition to guide speed and pressure and take your cues from the receiver’s expressions, body movements or invite their (verbal) feedback. During all of this you may like to maintain gentle eye-contact.

      7. Trust.

One of the biggest myths about sex is that our bodies are dangerous, that we are taught not to trust our bodies. We are told that our body leads us into so many areas of error. In my experience, nothing could be further from the truth. Our mind is capable of playing all kinds of trick on us, but the body just never lies. By trusting in your bodies’ ability to communicate, you create connection in ways that words alone cannot. Rather than worrying you’re doing it ‘wrong’, build deeper erotic connection that leads to pleasure, orgasm or healing and release from old wounds.

*this word is used intentionally as a gender neutral pronoun

**If you notice your hands are a little clammy or sticky, sprinkle a little ‘pure’ corn flour over your partner’s body or into your hands. (Not great for the genitals though). I say pure because some corn flours aren’t actually made from corn flour – so check the ingredients on the pack first. Corn flour as opposed to wheat / rice flour or baby powder creates a very, very soft sliding sensation on the skin, as inviting as oil, but –  well, without the oil. A different yet exquisite sensation. Or you could use massage oil – something natural and edible, coconut, almond or olive oil but not both oil and flour at the same time – otherwise you end up with a very claggy disgusting mess – unless that’s your thing, in which case enjoy!

Also remember if you are using oil –it breaks latex condoms and gloves so if you are going to use condoms and gloves for internal massage or intercourse – DON’T use oil for massage or vaginal / anal intercourse. Or, take a shower to wash the oil off the genitals before genital or anal sex. Easy peasy!

Mar 172015
 

As our attitudes to sexuality become more open and accepting, we’re seeing an increasing range (rainbow, even) of sexual identity and expression become recognised. We’ll be talking bisexuality, polyamory and ethical non-monogamy. What are the freedoms of these different modes of sexuality? Is white-picket-fence monogamy stopping us from being happy? How might sexuality evolve even further in the future … what’s next?

With sexuality educator and researcher Linda Kirkman, Melbourne Bisexual Discussion Group founder and Bisexual Alliance Victoria Inc co-founder James Dominguez, and relationship coach and polyamory educator Anne Hunter. Hosted by sex therapist and counsellor Cyndi Darnell.

Feb 182015
 

The reasons so many people have sex lives that underwhelm them is not because they’re doing it wrong, but because of the way they understand sex to be. My latest contribution to MindBodyGreen.

 February 18, 2015  adult, communication, feelings / emotions, genitals, health, intimacy, libido, myths, orgasm, pleasure, published, relationships, Sex Advice, sex education, sex positive, skills, tips, touch, wellbeing Tagged with: ,  Comments Off on Top 5 sex myths that are preventing you from having the connection you long for.
Jan 142015
 

One of the most frequently asked questions I get from women who come to see me for counseling (AKASexyLadyInPinkBraLyingOnWindowsill-850x400 sex therapy) is about their ability (or inability) to orgasm. In many cases, women who struggle with having orgasms believe that the issue is theirs and theirs alone, and that there is something fundamentally wrong with them if they don’t orgasm during partnered sex, especially heterosexual intercourse… Click image for story.

 January 14, 2015  adult, feelings / emotions, intimacy, My Blog, myths, orgasm, pleasure, published, sex, sex education, sex positive, shame, skills, tips, wellbeing, women Tagged with: ,  Comments Off on What I Wish All Women Knew About Orgasms
Dec 022014
 

When sex makes headlines, it’s usually for all the ‘wrong’ reasons. Do a Google News search (see images below) for sex and you will see endless examples of sex gone bad; shame making articles, heinous violations, articles espousing bigger-better-faster-stronger, or a celebrity sex tape that begins to circulate and the accompanying moral outcry is proof of society’s demise. Rarely, if ever, is the complex nature of sexuality discussed, nor is it encouraged. Black and white assertions are made to serve as click bait- not as education. The trouble with this is while such fear and danger based stories dominate our public discussions about sex, we have little incentive nor examples to reimagine what healthy eroticism can look like. While such a delicate area of the human condition remains so heavily legislated and socially manipulated, it’s no wonder so many of us feel powerless and afraid to stand our ground to make meaningful sexuality a part of daily conversations. But by learning to engage with sex from a place within that extends beyond knee-jerk responses to social conditioning, we have the opportunity to create something genuinely meaningful and empowering – on our own terms.

1

Cultural Climate

Atrocious sexual violations need to be discussed in public and at length. These are cultural issues that intersect deeply with the core of my work. Much of the work that I do is repairing the damage caused not only by sexual violations, but also the way sex is dealt with culturally. The aforementioned Google search highlights how mainstream media focuses almost exclusively on negative depictions of sex that perpetuate fear, shame and stigma.  What I would like to see in addition to these narratives (not instead of), are more examples that celebrate and empower people whose relationships with sexuality inform their identity, their wellbeing and their relationships. It’s rare for us to read stories of genuine sexual freedom and empowerment. It’s even rarer to read about sex that leads to greater understanding of the nature of sexuality. In the same way we celebrate fitness and cooking on TV – why don’t we also celebrate sex? What is it about sex that means it remains a vital component of wellbeing that must be silenced, shamed or less valuable than any of our other ‘achievements’?

Too often the moral and politically correct panic about sex derails important conversations about what sex can actually mean for us. The ways that sex can fulfil us as part of overall self-acceptance and give us the confidence to be more present in the world, to overcome our fears and to affect change in more areas than just the bedroom. The truth is, sex is fundamental to our wellbeing. Sure, we can ignore it and many of us do (just like fitness and cooking), but from my own experience and my work as a sexuality coach and therapist, I see day-in and  day-out the overwhelmingly positive impact that engaging with sexuality thoughtfully and respectfully has on our self esteem, relationships and productivity in life.

2

My Experience

Prior to my discovery of the wonders of body-based sex education and erotic expression, I struggled with sex too. To many it would  have looked more like issues of self esteem or shame management, with a  focus around my value and sexuality. Call it what you will, but I felt disconnected from my body, deeply flawed, unattractive, frumpy, awkward and undesirable. I lived almost exclusively ‘in my head’ and was at the mercy of my powerful emotions. I had every reason to be like this. Women of my shape and colouring were not celebrated as ‘sexy’ (read: valuable) nor even ‘sexual’ in the community at large nor in the media. Everything around me was telling me I was NOT worthy of a relationship, even with myself, based on the idea that embodying more of who I was, was fundamentally at odds with what was expected of me. I even had friends tell me if I just ‘settled’ and learnt to compromise, I would eventually be as ‘happy’ as them!

The thing was, I knew what I wanted, and I knew what I needed. Yes I wanted to be happy, but I also knew I didn’t want to be like them. I didn’t want to water myself down to fit a cultural stereotype that said, as a woman, I could embrace certain aspects of my power, but not all of it. The trouble was, I lived in a culture that kept telling me that expressing my sexuality was not OK. On both the left and right sides of the sociopolitical spectrum was and still is the belief that sexuality for women is essentially dangerous at worst, or indulgent at best.  Pleasure for its own sake was not a good enough reason. And that my desire for more meant I was either a victim of patriarchy and oppression or selfish. The possibility that I sat outside of this either / or perspective on sex, meant my personal freedom was classified as trivial.

Now, in hindsight, they were pretty powerful reasons to stay in my box. Such limited narratives and alarmist responses can be enough to destroy even the strongest spirit, but the call I felt within me to leap from fear and restriction became too great. I sensed I had no choice but to push on through. It was almost as if sexuality chose me. On some level I think it did. And what I chose was to learn how to engage with sex differently. I learned to engage with sexuality in ways that were totally outside the square and contrasted with limiting assumptions about what women did, said and wanted from life. Sex for me was no longer about toeing the line. It was about being real and raw and being seen, even if at times it made me unpopular with those who thought they knew better . It was bold and scary but has yielded the richest rewards of my lifetime. And I wouldn’t change a thing!

3

The Inner Conflict Around Sexual Expression

The struggle for sexual acceptance is not only felt by women. Anyone who has experienced some kind of internal conflict around their sexual desires or lack of, versus the collective moral compass, has had a taste of what I am describing. The very same system that shames women for enjoying sex in any way at all, ( although coquettish submission is usually ok), reduces  men to neanderthal – like thugs with absolutely no self control and an inability to distinguish between their very own body parts. Add to this mix misinformation and stigma around unconventional gender expression, non-intercourse based sexual relations, or interest in kinky sex practices, and you have a society that sees ‘acceptable’ sexuality as about as interesting and alluring as boiled cabbage.

Even though the manifestations of sexual shame are different depending upon your gender, identity or preferred sexual sub-culture, what is consistent is the sense of unworthiness  and trivialisation surrounding sex and pleasure.   That wanting to experience meaningful sexuality is somehow perverted or deranged. None of us are immune to the Google News eye of scrutiny and social judgement.

Change The Conversation from Fear to Freedom

Sex is such a vital part of our existence. It’s the source of so much that is good in our lives. Along with food and shelter, Maslow declared it a fundamental human need! But unlike all of Maslow’s other needs, sex for many women is way down on the list, and for a lot of men is something they would like to connect with but genuinely have no idea how. The trans and gender diverse communities are currently defining and redefining what sex even is and how it extends beyond genitals and sex acts. No one is exempt from the challenge of finding the best fit for sex in our lives.

Making time to prioritise sex does not involve having to have a partner, having the perfect body or endless Tantra classes (although a bit of the latter will most definitely help IMHO). Prioritising sex doesn’t even have to involve another person. By just acknowledging within ourselves that sex is something we would like to know more about, we are on the way to making the fundamental changes that hold us back from being the abundant and erotically confident people we fantasise about being. By acknowledging this within ourselves we are also more able to understand and accept this in other people. The thing is, the process of self discovery in sexuality needn’t be a scary one. It’s exciting, inspiring and so worthwhile, leading you back to your own potent source. It’s like you’re finally coming home!

If you are one of the millions on the planet who feel that something is missing- you’re probably right. It is missing. I urge you to look within and heed the call. Any investment you make into erotic self-inquiry can only ever lead you closer to the freedom and peace of mind you crave ( not to mention more fulfilling sex). And I‘ll meet you there, in the heart of pleasure town. (I’ll be the one with a margarita in one hand and a vibrator in the other!) First round is on me!

Images from Google News search for Sex Dec 2nd. 2014

Dec 022014
 

Cyndi spends some time chatting with Daniel Burt on Elastic Manifesto on Melbourne’s RRR as we explore “D” for Desire.  It’s Triple Rintense, it’s big, it’s long, it’s bawdy and maybe even controversial. Click image to be taken to the ”On Demand” link or click here.

Nov 242014
 

Absence of orgasm doesn’t need to be called ‘dysfunction’. The language we use to shame people around sexuality must stop! What’s dysfunctional is our inability to understand the requirements of sex that bring meaning to all of us, not just those who fit a medical definition (made up by clinicians, not sensual pioneers.) – Cyndi Darnell

 

One of the most frequently asked questions I get from women who come to see me for counselling (a.k.a sex therapy) is about their ability to orgasm.

Orgasm, it seems, is the main outcome or goal so many of us focus on when discussing sex. Linguistically and culturally it’s THE thing we (all of us, not just women) use to determine whether or not sex has been not only satisfactory, but more accurately, worthy of our efforts.

For most of us, we never stop to even consider what good sex is, means, or even feels like. Especially if we’ve never had it. As a result we have little to no frame of reference, so understandably we latch onto a framework provided to us, by – of all people – clinicians in lab coats to decide what ‘good sex’ looks like. In the history of human consciousness, what was once in the realm of mighty cosmic superpowers like Eros, Aphrodite and Pan, has now been superseded by the high priests of the universities whose life blood is determined by the likes of pharmaceutical companies, whose primary function is to tell you whether on not your sex life is normal and worthy. The trouble is that neither entity, divine or clinical is either capable of, nor responsible for, knowing something so fundamentally idiosyncratic as the nature of your own orgasm.

When we conjure up  images of clinicians, few (although some), may find this especially sexy.  So unless you have an erotic bent toward clinical sex and its associations as a means of direct arousal, using a scale of satisfaction created by people who have no idea what you like, and whose economic well-being is determined by corporate interests, seems utterly ludicrous to me. Some would argue it’s a better model than that of our ancestors, but that is neither my point. My point is that whether you’re praying to Eros or Viagra, your focus isn’t on the place where you will find the information you’re looking for; the very machinations of what motivates your decision to have sex in the first place. When you know why you’re doing something, you’re in a much better position to be able to enjoy it (and maybe have an orgasm).

What is Good Sex?

Take a moment to allow yourself to think about GOOD SEX… Go on… really think about it…

Notice these things:

What part of you is most responsive to the thought of good sex?

STOP – take notice

What part of you comes alive when you think of good sex?

STOP – take notice

How about when I change my language and invite you to feel good sex? What happens then?

STOP – take notice

Sensation?

Emotion?

Both?

My guess is that at the very least you will need to slow down, and allow yourself to get out of thinking and into more feeling, something that neither Eros nor Viagra alone will be able to do for you.

Now, there certainly are techniques, tips and tricks I can share with you to help you get on your way to super-duper orgasm land, absolutely.

Motivation + awareness + technique = orgasm.

Sometimes.

But what happens if you do EVERYTHING I say and you still don’t have an orgasm? Does that mean you are abnormal and unworthy? Does it mean you are defective? Or does that mean you don’t fit into The Big Cheese model of female sexuality, just like most women on the planet? According to a model of ‘sexual dysfunction’, then yes! But according to the dance of sexuality, your body is doing just fine.

Indeed there are endless blogs, articles and  videos online these days dedicated to how to have bigger, longer, stronger, faster more explosive orgasms. But let’s stop and consider this; if many or any of them held absolute bona fide secrets that applied to all women all of the time – wouldn’t we then all be focussed on those very things that all women (allegedly) crave in order to achieve the greatest orgasm of all?

So what are they?

Nobody knows.

Because unlike in clinical manuals or new-age blogs describing (often noteworthy) sexual function, these erotic secrets don’t exist in isolation from the rest of your life.

The truth is, that just because we are women (whatever that even means), it does not mean we are all hardwired the same way for pleasure, sex and orgasm. Nor does it mean what we like in our twenties, we’re going to like in our 30s, 40s and beyond. Our genitals may look and operate similarly, but genitals alone do not good sex make. What distinguishes so-so sex from utterly mind blowing sex is exactly that; our capacity to distinguish, to truly be with the experience of our bodies, allowing our minds to be blown and not distracted by trying to do something that a text book or magazine article tells us we ought.

If you are a woman who struggles with orgasm, let me ask you this:

Why do YOU want to have an orgasm?

Really.

Just take a moment to think about that answer. Do not read any more until you have that answer.

One thing I do know for sure is that when I ask women who don’t have orgasms why they want to, they very, very rarely if ever say it’s because they want pleasure. This may come as a surprise to many of you. Remember, I am in the very privileged position of hearing people’s deepest, most intimate erotic secrets day in and day out. For many women, genuine pleasure is rarely even on their radar. More than anything, their reasons are because they want to feel normal or because they feel they are missing out, or because everyone else is having them (apparently), or their partner expects it of them – all of which are answers motivated by fear and shame rather than pleasure.

So if pleasure is not the motivation (which is actually perfectly OK), why then would you torture yourself with the pressure of achieving something exclusively associated with pleasure, when YOUR personal motivation is fear or shame or something more nebulous? It’s like eating gravel in order to satisfy hunger but wondering why you’re perpetually dissatisfied? After all, it’s heavy, mineral-rich and fills you up; on paper it should work, but it’s just not what your body wants.

Busting Through The Bullshit

As far as I am concerned, it’s not women’s fault that such a cycle of thinking tends to dominate the minds of Western women. It a combination of a lack of understanding of, and respect for, the diversity of sex – not just by regular folks, but also those who decide what’s normal and abnormal. Shame and fear are very powerful motivators that keeps us in our place (and dependent upon clinicians for answers) but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Sad but true, the concept of sexual dysfunctions has been largely created in labs and universities and perpetuated by media across the world; not in bedrooms, beaches, hotel rooms or parks where much more sex generally occurs! Even the mere concept of function vs dysfunction implies a standard of performance rather than the very urges that drive sex in the first place, including pleasure, shame, guilt, fear, money, obligation, boredom and revenge[1]. Unless you are a sex professional where you are paid to perform sex , why on Earth would we use a scale based solely in performance to measure satisfaction, when in actual fact it is satisfaction we seek? Our scales and our objectives are deeply misaligned.

When you’re motivated by anything other than pleasure (which is OK, remember?) and wondering why you’re struggling with orgasm, you may have found your answer right there. No pills or lab coats required. And this my readers, is where we are rather complex and nuanced creatures. Regardless of our gender, we are not necessarily all the same, but all of value regardless of difference. It’s fundamentally important that you understand your own motivations around sex in order to get the most out of it.  When we learn to better understand ourselves through recognising our needs and emotions and how they motivate us, we’re in a better position to get and maintain the kind of sex we want, which may or may not involve abundant orgasms.

While we keep racing madly looking for a cure to the ‘sex problems’ women have, we are missing the answer that is so obviously in front of us.

 

[1] Meston. Cindy. Why Women Have Sex. St Martin’s Press. 2009. New York.

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Nov 182014
 

sex-nerd-sandraWhile recently in USA, I had the pleasure of being ‘had’ and interviewed by the delightful and quirky Sex Nerd Saaaandra ( you’ll get the joke when you tune in)  of Nerdist.com. In this in depth and meaty interview, Sandra and I get real and raw about what makes for getting the sex you really want, navigating new sexual terrain, the difference between being a sex therapist and a sex educator and why I love both, but how they are such different skills. We also cover how gender roles are being redefined, how unnatural sex  really is and well a whole lot more. Strap yourselves in for this one. It’s intense, it’s passionate and it’s online here.

Nov 102014
 

Daily-Life-Logo-TN-200x133Cyndi talks with Jenna Price from Daily Life about ways to tackle the orgasm gap found to be affecting Australian women. Click the Daily Life logo image or here to be taken directly to the story.

Sep 242014
 

logoToo long the exclusive realm of men, women are successfully claiming the world of pornography as their own, and shaping it in a direction more suited to their desires. The rise of feminist pornography highlights the growing demand for explicit portrayals of sex by women, and for women.

Sex therapist Cyndi Darnell has devoted her life to the pursuit of pleasure, assisting countless women in realigning their sexual expectations. Award-winning feminist erotic filmmaker Anna Brownfield has changed the nature of sex on film for an entire generation of young Australian women. Gala Vanting is an erotic imagist, who retains ownership of her sexuality through photography and short films that challenge what it means to be a sexual being. CEO of the Eros Association, and the leader of the Australian Sex Party, Fiona Patten also joins the panel.

Together, these three women discuss feminist pornography as an expression of female sexuality. Honest, revealing and illuminating, this event gives conventional notions of pornography a firm and long overdue slap.

 September 24, 2014  adult, communication, consent, feminism, pleasure, porn, sex, sex education, sex positive, society, women Tagged with: ,  Comments Off on Feminist Porn at The Wheeler Centre
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