This Friday, June 24th, my colleague Jackie Pack, CSAT and I are hosting an event for professionals and community members called "Let's Talk About It", starting the conversation about porn being a public health issue and the reality that porn addiction really exists.
However, during our three events, we will also talk about sex. Specifically, how do we talk about healthy sexuality in a way that is palatable to youth, couples and families? Sex, after all, is about so much more than parts and gettingoff. Yet, with today's numerous hook up apps, and the obsession with social media, pop culture, and porn (violent porn now being the primary form of sex education for our youth), sex has become a matter of function, and with that comes a lot of dysfunction(Perel, E., Mating in Captivity, 2006, Audibles).
As Esther Perel discusses in her book, Mating in Captivity (2006, p. 73), "[The] emphasis on physical achievement rather than desire and pleasure goes hand in hand with the emphasis on genitals, and reinforces the dominant male orientation." She adds, "The subjective experience of sexual pleasure is replaced by....erection, intercourse, orgasm (p.73).
How can we fully experience surrender, sensuality, intimacy, and connection when we are preoccupied with the frequency, duration, and intensity of the next sexual experience? When we become so obsessed with the mechanics of sex (how often, performance, etc) instead of the actual art of sex, we invoke perpetual dysfunction in our relationships.
Maybe it is time we get off of "getting off" and get real about what sex is and how we can reclaim it. Sex is not just about function, object, or orgasm; it is not about violence or image after image of airbrushed bodies. It is not the mere act of going through the motions. Sex is about love, surrender, sensuality, intimacy, connection, vulnerability, desire, and eroticism. It involves independence, dependence, and interdependence. Real sex includes consent and choice. It involves passion and spontaneity; a dip into the unknown while fully embracing what is known.
Talking about sex needs to start young and include all the elements of sex: what love is and isn't, what consent is and isn't, what it means to really connect with someone, how to be intimate in a healthy way.
For sex/porn addicts, learning how to engage in sex with one's partner in a healthy way takes time, attention and intention, and a new focus. That focus is on their partner and connecting on a deeper level-raw, vulnerable, open with all the elements previously discussed.
Getting real about sex instead of just getting off creates lasting intimacy and connection. It starts with a conversation, one that gets to be on-going. Sex is really beautiful if it is given a chance to be experienced as such.
If you haven't signed up for our June 24th event, whether you are a professional wanting to come for CEs, or a community member wanting to attend our free evening event, trust me, it will be worth your while. Join us and let's start this very important conversation about sex.
In case you forgot, remember, you are worth it.
*This blog is based on Esther Perel's book Mating in Captivity (2006).
Check out what's happening at Namasté~
JUNE 24TH PROFESSIONALS EVENT: Earn CEs: Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a flyer! Come listen to expert neurosurgeon Dr. Don Hilton talk about Porn Addiction as a Public Health Issue and how to talk to your clients about healthy sexuality.JUNE 24th FREE COMMUNITY EVENT: Email email@example.com for a flyer and learn ways to protect your family from porn in a porn culture. Dr. Hilton will speak at this event as well; Fight the New Drug, Jackie Pack and I will do a panel discussion on healthy sexuality.
JULY 16, 17TH: Mastering the Trauma Wound Weekend Workshop with Candice and Cari. Come learn how trauma has impacted your brain and body, as well as simple mindfulness based tools for healing your mind, body and spirit! Only seven seats available! RSVP (or for a flyer): firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com.
COMING IN AUGUST: "Embracing Desire and Eroticism as a Couple" A Workshop for Couples; Facilitated by Candice and Cari....stay tuned for details!
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