We’ve been talking about sexual shame and how debilitating it can be. So today we need to confront the myths. Not a day goes by that I am not confronted by it on both a personal and professional level. This week was no exception.
The conversation usually starts with:
I am (fill in the blank) and you know we grew up in a very conservative home … It doesn’t matter is you are Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Moslem or a sun worshiper, chances are you grew up conservative! No religion has a monopoly on it and in my opinion every religion has something to answer for.
Shame is so deeply ingrained in our psyche that we feel it at the mere thought. We know that religion is not solely to blame. We know that it is the million little cuts from the myths and lies you were told by those who thought they knew more than you.
Maybe you never had access to the correct information or sexual vocabulary. Maybe you come from a sex negative belief structure, have sexual fear or simply have low self esteem. Maybe you have a combination or all of them. Each one will impact on your life in a variety of different ways. The good news is that you can overcome it. All you have to do is want to.
One of the discussions we almost never have is the one about sex being pleasurable and that enjoying sex is not a bad thing. It is very much a part of our upbringing that pleasure equates to lust and lust is a sin! If you have the good things in life, loads of money and a fancy car you are somehow bad people. Admitting to pleasure is somehow inappropriate. Little wonder then that so few of us will own up to enjoying pleasure.
And then there is sexual rejection. Any rejection is awful to experience. My help was rejected recently and I was incredibly hurt by the stranger who rejected it. How much worse is it when it is from someone you love and want to please?
Sexual rejection is not just about someone turning you down. It’s also about the fear of what your partner will think about you if you admit your sexual nature. Will they think you are kinky, sexually deviant, inexperienced or sexually inadequate. The more you think about it the worse it gets.
Are you comparing yourself to a porn start performance?
Real sex as opposed to reel sex! Let me remind you that reel sex is a performance, porn or romantic comedy style. I love the fact that all women orgasm, multiple times in movies when the truth is very different.
So how do we move on from sexual sham, find our sexual confidence and start getting the sex we deserve?
Start with what you know to be true and talk about that. Something like: I find it really hard to talk about sex and don’t feel comfortable when I’m naked or I find it difficult to talk about what I want because I’m scare you will laugh at me.
As with most things in life, when you confront your shame, timing is everything. A conversation when the soccer is on, while you are on the short strokes or helping the children with their homework is always a bad idea.
Try to have the discussion when you are both relaxed, having dinner, sitting on the patio watching the sun go down or on holiday is a much better idea.
Which brings me to privacy. It’s very hard to explore and talk about your sexuality, sexual needs and sexual relationship when the house is crowded and there is no privacy to speak of. You need to find a way.
Go for a walk or a drive without the children. I love chatting in the car because there is nowhere to go and you don’t even have to look at each other. This is a great tip to use with children in the car as well. It makes discussion much easier.
Start with discussing the small things and never play the blame game. Always make the discussion about what you are feeling, experiencing or desiring. If you don’t know where to begin, start with: I’m feeling inadequate/ shy/ uncomfortable/ a bit lost, is there something I can do to make our sex life better, more pleasurable, or more exciting? Would you like to try … or I think I may need to use some lube!
If you’re brave enough download the BDSM contract featured on the Lola Montez website https://www.lolamontez.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Bondage-Contract.pdf, and chat about everything it contains. You mate everything about it but it will give you both an opportunity to voice your opinion and laugh.
The most important thing to remember when you are trying to overcome your sexual shame is to have a sense of humour because when you take all the angst out of sex it is a very funny and odd looking act! So get over your conservative upbringing because let’s face it –
How’s that working for you?
For comments or questions email me on Sharon@lolamontez.co.za