I had to write a response paper for my sexuality class. I wanted to share that here because I believe it is very relevant to my blog. I hope you enjoy…I adapted some for this post.
One of my many hopes in this field is to deconstruct the societal views around sex and sexuality. I hope to break barriers around the ultimate truths of sexuality and advocate how these views are oppressing and discriminatory.
I get asked these two questions constantly; at least I did in the Midwest; “How do you have sex, and don’t you want to have kids?” This is what they are really saying; “How do you have sex without having a penis inside of you? And how dare you not use your body according to what God intended for women!” This is how I respond; I sure hope sex is more than the male body part inserting itself into the female body part because, fuck, how boring! And being a woman has nothing to do with being able to have children, however being female does, please get your definitions correct. Sexuality is still paired with patriarchy, conservatives, and I believe society still views sex as only complete with orgasm and/or conception. It is still so linear
*According to David Scharnch and his book; Passionate Marriage, “Differentiation is your ability to maintain your sense of self while in close contact with people who may pressure you to conform…There’s no beauty in sex, the beauty is in people. You cannot save the beauty in sex; you have to put it in. We all develop inner beauty to varying degrees (2009 p. 75 &107).”
*From my first sexuality class we came from a very different approach than Greene and Flemons. In their book; Quickies: the handbook of brief sex therapy, they state this; “No couple can be intimate without freedom in relationship (2004, p. 144). These are very different views and I tend to agree more with Schnarch because I do not believe freedom in a relationship can occur without freedom within oneself. However, both of these quotes touch on my view of sexuality; freedom!
I had to really form my beliefs around sexuality due to having such liberal views in a conservative state and the best way I did that was ask the question, if I were to explain sex and sexuality to my child, student, or client, how would I? Sex is passion, it is beauty, and it is serious and not meant to be with multiple people. When we find that someone, that hopefully is the person we spend our lives with do I believe the act of sex is at its best. Sex does not just mean a male in missionary position with a female. Sex is commitment; intimacy and connection in whatever form people choose, with a person we know will not throw our self-esteem and worth around because we matter. Deconstructing social norms and expanding the definition of sexuality, though a major goal for me in this profession does come from a selfish place related to my own journey as a sexual being. *From the book, Handbook in clinical sexuality for mental health professionals,” by Candace Risen, she states this;
“Everyone has sexual thoughts, feelings, and experiences that are integral to their sense of who they are and how they relate to the world. Sexual problems often manifest and mask themselves in the major symptoms that bring patients to treatment; depression, anxiety, failure to achieve, low self-esteem and the inability to engage in intimate relationships (p.4).”
I am not shy when it comes to talking about sex. I love who I am and am proud of who I am. This quote is why family therapy is so important and so crucial to normalizing the topic of sex and sexual orientation! Connecting to another person sexually is the most personal activity we can engage in. Societal views and definitions gives sex a bad name and have people feel crappy about themselves because most of the time we do not fit in the constricting mold which can lead to the opposite of what sex is supposed to be; intimate.
This picture alone is proof the topic of sex is still so uncomfortable for so many, i was reading this in public and got so many judgmental looks…it was crazy.