Here’s your 3-bullet Thursday, Sexy-time Edition!
(Note: there are 4 bullets today!)
Our typical sex education consists of 1) the Cosmo sex advice column, 2) movies and tv, and 3) porn. While all 3 can actually have some interesting pointers (looking at you Cosmo), there comes a time in most people’s lives when these models stop working. Enter the world of “holistic” sex-ed.
Let’s start with a fun one, suggested by Courtney the other day – the Savage Lovecast
, Dan Savage’s podcast focusing particularly on LGBTQ issues, kink and fetishes, polyamory, and plain old advice and insight on relationships and pleasure in general.
Our most checked-out book in the clinic library
Moving on to something more clinical, but still excellent, is Barbara Keesling PhD’s book Sexual Healing
. It’s about healing sexual problems ranging from low libido to inability to orgasm, but at it’s core, it’s about 4 words: Non-demand sensate-focus. 1) Non-demand means giving up all thoughts of performance and goal oriented thinking around sex. Whoa – is that even possible?! 2) Sensate-focus means you’re focusing on physical sensations that you’re actually feeling in the moment. Not your fantasies, what your partner is feeling, your hair, or taking out the trash. This turns sex into a mindfulness meditation practice – being in the moment. Sounds boring… but only if you’ve never taken your meditation practice to its deeper levels (where joy and pleasure can be an amazing and consistent part of your meditation experience). And yes, this non-demand sensate-focus approach does take a lot of practice! After all, you’re re-wiring years of doing things differently. And, as Keesling mentions throughout her book, it’s a key to solving a whole host of sexual problems.
Again from Courtney: “There’s a condom and lube company (about to also come out with a line of tampons and pads) that is kicking ass. All their products are designed to match a woman’s vaginal pH, contain no harmful and random chemicals, are latex-free, and fragrance free (their lube is basically aloe). Aaaaand their condoms come in 3 sizes. It occurred to me that our female patients who are experiencing chronic vaginal issues, especially related to pH and bacterial growth, may benefit from knowing about these products. I know I often will talk to our patients about getting away from tampons in general and pads that contain rayon and chlorine, but I’ve never talked with any of them about what ‘bedroom products’ they are using that might be contributing to their issues.” Consider yourself informed.
From Andrei: Chocolate Love Tonic from Urban Moonshine
(which we carry in the clinic store). Or, as one of our patients calls it, “Chocolate Sex Sauce.” Good for an overall boost to sexual energy for both men and women. And also good as an anti-depressant (and a delicious one at that, way tastier than Zoloft).
For men over 40
Ok, everyone has heard of menopause, but what about andropause? The poor guys 40 and over (and I now count myself among them having just turned 40) have been left behind, silently needing to come to grips with their changing hormonal reality. Andropause, like menopause, denotes a change in sex hormone balance that happens as men age. Testosterone declines, and with it, libido, erections, sexual performance and more. Beyond the excellent resources in Keesling’s Sexual Healing book, I always recommend The Natural Testosterone Plan book by Stephen Buhner
, which gives an excellent overview of andropause as well as the herbs and supplements to address it. The one supplement I will mention here is pine pollen (from pine cones). Among plants, this substance has the highest amount of plant-based testosterone. Buhner recommends it as an herbal “hormone replacement therapy” for men over 40. Read his book to find out more.
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Jeremy Riesenfeld, Co-owner