Summarised from Come as You Are by Emily Nagosky.
In Nagosky’s book Come as You Are, she comprehensively explains a really useful theory in sexuality research – The Dual Control Model of sexual response.
Complicated name, but incredibly user-friendly.
This post is my summary of the most critical points in the theory, and how they might apply to our sex lives. Please indulge me as I use an automotive analogy throughout. Continue reading Hand-Break Off, Gas Pedal Down
Undergoing gynaecological exams (such as pap smears or fertility related procedures) is commonly somewhat uncomfortable.
It’s normal to feel some awkwardness or nervousness before and/or during these intimate exams. Fair enough – these are necessary but invasive procedures. And sometimes with a complete stranger.
It is also common to feel some physical discomfort – the equipment may be cold and hard, you may be feeling tense and find it hard to relax your pelvic muscles, a swab may poke in a sensitive spot.
For some people though, gynaecological procedures are very uncomfortable, painful and distressing. Pelvic pain can impact in a variety of ways and may be caused by a variety of factors. These include: Continue reading Painful Gyne Exams: First Steps to Good Care
A lot of people who own a penis or have sex with penis-owners find it difficult to request condom use (when safer-sex is relevant). And I’ve written about some of the reasons why here.
Alternatively, they might find it hard to follow through on their preference for condom use in the face of resistance from a partner, or in the face of lust (ie. sexual disinhibition once aroused).
And this was the topic of a discussion between myself & Victoria Cullen recently. I’ve written about Victoria before here – she is a Sex Educator and Researcher, and has a great sexuality blog called The Lubrarian. Continue reading Condom Prime-Time for Penis Lovers
For most men, the idea of providing a sperm sample during their IVF workup or treatment is a bit awkward and uncomfortable. And fair enough – this is far from the ideal situation of making-love to make a baby from the comfort of your own bed.
All of a sudden, the whole scientific community is in your bed, and you have to masturbate into a cup.
But for some men, the idea may be particularly anxiety provoking and distressing.
Why does collection day cause anxiety?
Here are a few reasons why:
- You may be worried about “performance anxiety” in a strange and clinical environment, and not being able to arouse yourself to ejaculation;
- You may have been fine when you did the initial semen tests, but now feel the pressure of providing sperm on the actual big-day of treatment;
- You may have had issues in the past not being able to ejaculate in sexual or medical situations;
- You may not actually be familiar with masturbating on your own – you may be used to having a partner with you for all sexual stimulation; or
- You may have religious reasons for not masturbting.
Continue reading Andrology Angst: What are my Options Doc?
Painful sex is incredibly distressing & confusing for the women who experience it, and their partners.
Sexual pain can be caused by a variety of medical factors, and it manifests in a variety of ways – such as chronic discomfort during sex, pain upon genital touching and/or vaginal penetration, or an inability to have vaginal penetration due to intense pain. Some women who experience sexual pain may also experience pain using tampons, and/or discomfort sitting or wearing tight pants. Continue reading Painful Sex: Empowered Help Seeking
I recently had the honour of interviewing Tanaya, a 32 year old mother, about her experiences of early motherhood and sexuality. Her partner is Jon, 34 years old, and their son Sean is currently 10 months old.
This is an abbreviated version of the interview. To read the full interview – go here.
ALICE: To start, maybe you can give a bit of an overview of how things have changed in your sex life, or your thoughts and feelings around sex, before pregnancy, during pregnancy and now that you’re breastfeeding. Continue reading Interview: Three in the Bed & the Mother Said… (short version)
In many relationships, talking about sex is difficult. And it can be especially difficult if your sex life isn’t going so smoothly.
For some couples, or perhaps in more casual sexual relationships too, the idea of going from no meaningful conversations about sex to full-on sex discussions about erections, position preferences, sexual desire discrepancies and secret fantasies may feel like a very daunting leap.
And sometimes it’s best to start small. Continue reading Let’s Talk About Talking About Sex, Baby
Eroticism can be defined in many ways. Here are a few definitions that I like:
- a quality (in a person, artwork, fantasy, etc.) that causes sexual feelings;
- a philosophical contemplation concerning the aesthetics of sexual desire, sensuality and romantic love;
- a state of sexual arousal or anticipation – an insistent sexual impulse, desire, or pattern of thoughts;
- the cultivation of pleasure for its own sake;
- the exploration of sexual imagination and fantasies.
Continue reading Curating Your Erotic Diet
In recent posts I’ve been discussing the idea of sexual novelty and variety. Go here for an overview, or go here to read about The Healthy Sex Pyramid.
But even when we believe a bit of variety might be nice, the idea of introducing something new to our sexual repertoire can be very daunting.
Perhaps you’d like to try some dirty talk or sexual narration. Or maybe a new sexual position or location. Maybe role-play is on your to-try list, or perhaps you’d like to experiment with being more sexually assertive or sexually submissive in bed.
Whatever it is that you or a partner are suggesting, here is a little tip for easing the anxiety. Continue reading Novelty Nervousness and the 5-Minute Rule