Good Sex with Emily Jamea: Female Sexual Empowerment

Good Sex with Emily Jamea: Female Sexual Empowerment

Emily Jamea, Ph.D., is a sexologist, author, and podcast host. You can find her here every month to share her latest thoughts on sex.

We all remember that scene in When Harry Met Sally, right? Why do you think women have gotten so good at fake orgasms? Because women’s sexual pleasure has been second to men’s for centuries, if not millennia.

The lack of recognition that women deserve sexual pleasure runs deep—it’s hard to believe, but the accurate anatomy of the clitoris has only recently been described in medical textbooks. Many female doctors aren’t even equipped to help their vulva-owning patients understand their own bodies.

This lack of knowledge about women’s needs and desires harms women as well as their sexual partners. This was the case with my clients, Luisa and Nathan.

Luisa and Nathan had been married for 10 years. She had two sons from a previous marriage and they shared a 7-year-old daughter. They had trouble getting pregnant and their sex life never fully recovered. By their own admission, it wasn’t great at first.

Nathan and Luisa met through their church and dated for five years before getting married. They connected over their shared values ​​and mutual love of the outdoors. They had no regular conflicts other than the occasional fight with Nathan’s ex-wife. They were happy in their marriage but had reached a point where Nathan was feeling dissatisfied with their sex life which is why they came to see me.

“I love Luisa deeply, and I wouldn’t change her for the world. But I’m not sure we’re on the same page sexually. It often feels like Luisa is going through the motions. I know she loves me but she is so calm during sex. Please tell me what turns her on, what positions she likes, what kind of touch she wants, but she just says she doesn’t know and she’s happy with the way things are. I feel, however, that we could be better.

He glanced at Luisa, gently squeezing her leg, reassuring her that this was coming from a place of love and not criticism.

“Tell me how you see things, Luisa,” I urged her.

“I’m really happy with how things are. Nathan always asks me what I like, but I like the way he does things. I have no complaints. I even have orgasms most of the time.

Nathan sighed.

I asked Luisa to describe the dynamics of her family of origin and to tell me about the sex education she received growing up. She described her parents as loving, but not overly loving. They were married for 35 years before her mother died of breast cancer. Her father never remarried and remained busy with part-time consulting jobs and volunteer work at the church. About her They never talked to her about sex except to tell her that she had to wait until the wedding. She received no negative messages from the church, but she agreed with church teachings that sex was meant for marriage.

She and Nathan spent the first five years making out and exploring each other’s bodies with their hands. They describe their first relationship as a neutral experience. It was a bit physically uncomfortable for Luisa, and Nathan mentions that she always looks tense when they make love, despite her orgasming.

Upon further investigation, I learned that Nathan was always the one initiating the sex and that Luisa had never explored her own genitals. She had not looked in the mirror nor had she masturbated.

“I hear you feel relatively satisfied, Luisa, but I also hear Nathan’s complaint that you seem to ignore it. Did you know that female sexual satisfaction is predicted more for assertiveness than for the frequency of orgasms? I’ve also heard that you may not have gotten negative messages about sex growing up, but that wasn’t something that was celebrated either. I wonder how much this has affected your passion for sex.

“This resonates with me,” Luisa said. “I like sex, but I can’t say I’m passionate about it, at least not as I see it in the movies.”

I asked Nathan to go out to ask Luisa a few questions alone. “Would you be willing to share your sexual fantasies with me?” I asked, leaning forward. She turned bright red before finally admitting that she sometimes fantasized about being punished. “I’ve always done the right thing. I’ve never gotten into trouble. I guess I’m feeling a little excited about being mean for once. I smiled. “That gives us something to work with.”

I explained that he probably would have experienced more passion and hunger for sex if he had learned to express his sexual desires and needs. I told her that this didn’t necessarily mean that she had to tell Nathan every fantasy he had, but that allowing him to share some sexual thoughts might enhance their intimacy and overall pleasure.

“I feel like you’ve reduced sex to a function of the body when it has the potential to be so much more. Sex is an opportunity for connection and even self-expression. I want you to see what it feels like to tap into your fantasy as you explore your body without Nathan present. I told her to use a mirror and learn to identify all of her parts. “Information is power. It’s all about sexual enhancement for you. Sex can only make us feel alive if we feel we are in control of our pleasure.

“Nathen says you’re silent during sex. What is it about?

“I’m not sure,” she said. “I just feel stupid making a lot of noise.”

“I want you to do what feels authentic to you,” I started. “Some people are quieter than others, and that’s okay, but I don’t want you to hold back if there’s a moan or a sigh inside. Being verbal not only communicates what makes you feel good, it also helps you feel more turned on. Try it yourself before dating Nathan if it seems like a safer first step.

I checked in with Nathan and Luisa a month later. Luisa was radiant.

“I didn’t realize how closed off I was about sexuality until I was,” she said. “All this time I’ve been thinking about having sex the way I should, but there’s so much more than I thought. I can’t tell you how liberating it is to let go of limiting beliefs I didn’t even know I had. I even started initiating sex, something I’ve never seen myself do.

While learning to become more assertive in bed doesn’t happen overnight, it is possible. And once you start having sex in a way that feels totally authentic to who you are, it can be incredibly exciting.

From articles on your site
  • Good Sex With Emily Jamea: Sex After Bachelor ›
  • What is your sexual self-esteem? ›
  • Five ways to improve your sexual well-being ›
  • What Really Happens in Sex Therapy? – Healthy women ›
Related articles Around the web