Dr J's Sex Facts

Fun sex facts and accurate information from a clinical sexologist for a hotter and more fulfilling sex life.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Joyous Thanksgiving!

"Gratitude is a twofold love -- love coming to visit us, and love running out to greet a welcome guest."
...Henry van Dyke, late 19th-early 20th century American author and educator

The holidays are upon us, and whatever you celebrate, you’re likely to be inundated with food, drink, shopping and stress. Our body image can take a big hit when we get on the scales in January to discover that special holiday gift of yet another few pounds. Many of us just don’t feel sexy when we’re dragging around some extra weight. Women might avoid helpful p-v positions because they worry their stomachs might look fat or their breasts saggy. Men’s confidence might diminish at discovering their penises look smaller when hidden under a bit of a belly. Let’s recognize that we’re sexy beings regardless of our looks; and most of us will feel even sexier by maintaining our bodies in good health.

On a happy note, here are a few holiday ideas not just for surviving, but thriving:

· Holiday Parties: A friend of mine suggests that you remember not to act like a complete ass when you bump into an ex or that you overcome your innate shyness and talk to that special someone you’ve been wanting to get to know better (what a great holiday gift to yourself!).

· When you’re feeling stressed: Breathe. Smile. Have an orgasm.

· And for those of you who have aaaaaall your issues handled, here’s a reminder to play safe and play smart.

This T-Day, I’m particularly thankful for:

- Living in California, where most (but not all) sexual rights are protected. Did you know that vibrators are illegal in Texas? No wonder they spend all that time bouncing up and down on horseback!
- The new Congress, which gives us all a glimmer of hope for a new, more educated and humane approach to sexual health.
- And finally, Maestro Jim and #9 for all their inspiration and help with producing this blog.

Next Week: Help for Sexual Concerns—Sharing Pleasure

As always, the doctor is in for your questions and comments.

With Pleasure,

Dr. J

Friday, November 17, 2006

“I Can’t Do That!”: Climbing out of the Gender Rut and Having Some Fun

“When both genders feel free to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ with no concern for anything but their own desires, a truer understanding, and a more positive sexuality, can be achieved.”
Dossie Easton and Catherine Liszt, The Ethical Slut

Most of us are no longer bound by the restrictive gender roles of the past. Society is changing: as more women enter the workforce, more men are actively parenting, and people generally feel freer to express themselves.

Masculinity and femininity—formerly engrained as sugar and spice for girls and snails and puppy dog tails for boys—are now far more diversely defined by the culture in which we live. For instance, in Paris, many men carry small clutch purses—that’s considered masculine. In Italy, it’s not uncommon to see men walking with their arms around each other as a comfortable extension of male comeraderie. These cultural definitions of feminine/masculine are changing all the time. For example, 20 years ago, an earring on a man was considered feminine; now it’s the epitome of masculine.

How Sex Roles Affect our Pleasure:

· She might be thinking: I like being on top because it’s the best position for stimulating my clitoris, but what if that makes him feel inadequate? (Women take care of others’ feelings—often to their disadvantage)
· He might be thinking: Once in awhile, I’d love to just lie back, be passive and not have to initiate everything. (Men feel inadequate if they’re not taking the lead; and face it, sometimes behind that big macho top there’s an acquiescent bottom)
· She: I’d love to try initating things sometimes, but he never gives me the chance because he always seems to want sex. (Men feel like they’re supposed to always want sex)
· He: I’d love to ask her what she likes, but I’m supposed to know everything, or I’ll look like a wimp. (Would it be worse if I find out I’ve been doing it wrong?) Even if you’re doing it right, wouldn’t it be great to find out how to do it even better?
· She: I’d like to share what kinds of touch I like, but isn’t he supposed to know? (What if he thinks I’m a freak?)
· He: I’m afraid to allow myself to be vulnerable. (What if she thinks I’m a freak?)
· She: I’d love it if he’d just relax and not be so macho. I really can’t keep my hands off him when he shows me his vulnerable side.
· He: Sometimes I might like to try dressing up in sexy clothes just like my partner, but won’t she think I’m “unmanly”?

Get out of that Rut!

Sometimes it’s easier to tell a partner your secret desires or curiosities by presenting them as just a fantasy. Here’s a fun way you can each share some previously unspoken desires in a non-threatening way. I call it “build-a-fantasy”:

One person starts the fantasy with a sentence, then the other person adds another sentence, and so on. It might go something like this:

She: I’m walking on a tropical beach, wearing nothing but a see-through blouse
He: And then I walk up and offer you a beautiful flower before I kneel down before you and start kissing your feet and ankles
She: And then I throw you down, put whipped cream on your nipples and start licking it off
He: Oooh.

He’s just told her—indirectly—that kissing her feet and ankles turns him on, and she’s just told him that she might like to play with his nipples.

Another fun experiment is doing everything the opposite of what’s usual for you. Ask him to do a striptease, or ask her to hold you down and kiss you all over. Try on these new behaviors and see which ones you’d like to experiment with further and/or keep in your repertoire. They don’t have to replace all your old patterns, but let yourselves be open to experiment with a variety of possibilities. Try them on like you would a costume just for the sake of variety.

As you were reading the above, did any of it make you uncomfortable? Exploring that might help you learn something important about yourself and your desires. And if there was anything specific that piqued your interest or made you uneasy, let me know. I’d love to hear how you felt about these issues.

Next week: Sexy Holidays!

As always, the doctor is in for your questions and comments.

With Pleasure,

Dr. J

Monday, November 13, 2006

Back to Reality

I'm back from a sexual science meeting in Las Vegas. In addition to attending lots of lectures, I also saw the Cirque du Soleil show, "Zumanity." What a visual/sensual treat it was: bodies writhing, dancing, touching, kissing, dripping, sweating. And so diverse! Congratulations to Cirque for including something for just about everyone and for positive role modeling of comfort with the diversity of human sexuality. Highly recommended.

This was the first post-election scientific meeting I've been to in many years where attendees felt there might be some positive changes in the political and social climate. Some long-anticipated research projects just might get funded in the next few years, enabling us to advocate for sexual health issues.

Stay tuned Thursday/Friday for my next post. Dr. J

Thursday, November 02, 2006

I Know You’re Out There; I Can Hear You Breathing

I’ve now published nine posts and have received many enthusiastic emails from you, dear readers. However, these have not translated into many posts here on the blog, so I’d like to hear from you this week and next. Please either comment on one of the previous posts, or add a general comment here. Questions are welcome too. And although I have many future posts planned, I’d also like to hear from you about your ideas for the blog, e.g., what areas would you like me to cover and what information you need. Now’s your chance. So send me a post. Shy about sharing? Remember, it’s confidential; you can use an alias.

Next week, I’ll be in Las Vegas, at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (
www.sexscience.org), where I’ll be participating on a panel about eroticism in the arts.

With Pleasure,

Dr. J