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Sex Talk...

Having mature conversations about sex...

‘What do I enjoy, sexually? What do I want to explore, sexually? How do I communicate these things to a new partner, or my current partner, so that I get to experience them?’

These are foundational questions that prompt many clients to enquire about sessions. Many are struggling with the fact that their main source of inspiration, information and ideas about sex is…porn. Many recognise that there is a disparity between what is portrayed in porn, and what they actually find enjoyable, satisfying and pleasurable. To quote Jordan Peterson (Psychologist & Professor), the thing about porn is that it is ‘sub optimal: it gives you access to part of something but denies you access to all of it. It offers immediate gratification but no medium to long term development of character or life.

I’ve written in a previous blog about the neurological and addictive impacts that porn can have, and one of the major things that came out of that research was the difficulties that porn addicts have in forming new, physical relationships. Many clients share with me about how their confidence around being sexually intimate is just at zero, and they are aware that this is strongly linked to the skewed expectations they have from porn. So, how to explore your ‘medium to long term development’ and move away from the short term gratification of porn?

In this really interesting interview, Jordan Peterson talks about some ‘basic guidelines for initiating sexual activity with a new partner’. Amongst other things, he suggests that:

  • You probably shouldn’t initiate anything that you wouldn’t talk to them about first. Because what that probably means is you don’t know them well enough to go that far with them, physically.
  • There’s nothing wrong with not moving forward sexually until you’ve been able to discuss with that person what you are like, personally, in relationship to sexual behaviour: what are your personal experiences & history, what do you enjoy or avoid etc.

Two things here: first, you need to actually know & understand what you are like in relationship to sex; second, if the idea of sitting down and having a chat about sex with a new partner just feels totally awkward here’s where sex coaching comes in! I would say that most adults are basically operating (emotionally and psychologically) at the level of an uncomfortable 13 year old when it comes to conversations about sex. As an adult you need to…

  • Identify what excites you & how your body feels
  • Develop your language and confidence in communication
  • Allow those layers of conditioned shame and guilt to be felt and released
  • Move through any emotional and physical trauma
  • Address the issue of the extreme stimuli of internet porn

Coaching sessions give you a space in which to experiment and practice these things, to explore what your actual desires are in relationship to sex (away from porn) and build your confidence in communicating those things without fear of performance, offending, judgement or rejection.

The thing is that your habits around sex and intimacy cannot be divorced from your patterns of behaviour elsewhere in life: emotionally, financially, physically etc. Intimacy and connection are the root of what we seek as human beings. If you are treating that casually, unconsciously, only pursuing short-term immediate gratification, not able to have honest, open and mature conversations - this will inevitably be rippling out into every aspect of your behaviour.

If you can really address what is going on for you sexually, develop maturity and dialogue, you will also notice that your capacity for more nourishing and responsible approaches to things like food, exercise, finances & other addictions will increase.

If any of the points here have resonated for you (porn addiction; lack of confidence in relationships; wanting to form deeper, less casual intimate relationships; expressing and communicating sexual desires) and you’d like to discuss how coaching sessions could support you to explore, then drop me an email on libby@sexcoachinguk.com.

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