Dr J's Sex Facts

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

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Power: Catnip for Women (And Some Men Too)

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”
Abraham Lincoln

Just in case nobody has ever told you, let me be the first: Power is an aphrodisiac. It gets you into all the best places, it introduces you to interesting and influential people, it’s headier than any perfume, and I hear it can be even more intoxicating than drugs or alcohol. (I hear things.)

But Wait, There’s More!

That’s right; when you combine a dash of charisma with a dollop of testosterone and a large serving of power, guess what you get? If you said a man who’s irresistible to more than just the electorate, you’ve played this game before. Now, pair that kind of irresistible force with a few examples of poor decision-making, and you have an all-too-familiar story—the kind reporters like to lead with by saying, “details at 7; pictures at 11.”

Ever wondered how you’d act after spending years as a powerful and charismatic figure, someone who’s always performing for an adoring public—a public who’s constantly telling you how wonderful you are, and occasionally even throwing themselves at you? Who can say what any of us would do? Just think about how tempting it could be—and how easy it would be for almost any of us to start losing just a bit of our own sense of reality. In fact, when you think about it, it’s a wonder that anyone actually stays sane in that world!

Why is all this so not a big deal in other countries, but always a delicious scandal here? It has more than just a little to do with this country’s attitudes about sex. That and the fact that newspapers have a pressing need to sell stories.

Pop Quiz: What’s one of the hottest selling topics in U.S. newspapers and magazines? Survey says: cautionary tales about sex. Why? Because in the U.S., sex = bad, while in other countries it’s not nearly such a big deal; hence, people can’t be as easily manipulated into buying these tales.

OMG!!! Not Me!

So, when you do see these kinds of stories, ask yourself: did this person actually bring any kind of harm to his/her public; or cheat us out of our time or money or in any other way violate the public trust? If the answer to these questions is a resounding NO, then perhaps it’s really no one’s business but theirs and those closest to them. We’ve all made poor decisions, but most of us don’t have them held up for public scrutiny. What if your every blunder and impropriety was scrutinized under a People Magazine microscope?

Which do you think is more harmful to the public?

A) Lining your pockets with lobbyists’ money?
B) Spending your constituents’ hard-earned tax dollars on overseas “fact-finding” junkets?
C) Having a late night tryst with someone other than your spouse?

If you picked “C,” welcome to America in the early days of the 21st century, where everything is fodder for supermarket gossip tabloids and magazines.

Let’s Slay the Dragon

How do we all put a stop to this kind of manipulation? Step one: Refuse to participate. Don’t read/listen to gossip. Don’t engage in discussions about it. Let’s face it: unless you’re intimately related to the people involved, anything you say is an uninformed opinion anyway.

OK, stopping cold turkey is a bit drastic, but if all of us learned to slowly back away from and eventually refuse to take part in these public rites of character assassination, before too long we’d find the level of discourse would have risen quite a bit. And wouldn’t that be a refreshing change from the usual slap and tickle?

But I DON’T want to forbid you to gossip. That would be wrong. Plus it would just make it that much more attractive. So how’s this for a compromise: YOU be the one in your group to take the high road and maybe mention a few of the above points while everyone else is “tsk-tsk”ing over the latest scandal. Now aren’t YOU the smart sophisticate! Gives you a feeling of power, doesn’t it?

With Pleasure,

Dr. J

Friday, March 14, 2008

Ma, Can I Be a Feminist and Still Like Men?

“Stand by your man, and show the world you love him
Keep givin’ all the love you can
Stand by your man”

Tammy Wynette

By now we’ve all heard about the latest “sex scandal” in which the governor of a large eastern state has allegedly spent thousands of dollars on sex-for-pay. There he stood, for all to see in the 21st century version of the old stock and pillory, his wife stoically beside him, as he made a very public apology for his behavior (let’s pause here a moment and consider this very timely question: Just what was he apologizing for, and why should his private life be any of our business?).

His wife is a high-powered attorney, so we can assume she’s an educated, intelligent woman. Yet there she was, standing next to him, with her eyes downcast, very obviously in pain.

Some pundits are asking: If feminism has brought women equality, why do some continue to stand by their man and allow themselves to be publicly humiliated? In other words, if you’re a feminist, it’s presumed that you’d never put up with that kind of behavior from your partner? Ha! (What world do these pundits live in, anyway? Is it the one with fairies and unicorns?)

That Poor Woman!

In the real world, relationships don’t come in a convenient “one-size-fits-all” package. For all we know, the couple in question might have an “arrangement” (like many other couples) in which she may very well have her own boy toy (or girl toy), or she’s fine with him paying for sex as long as it’s not a relationship with personal attachments. Gasp! Do people really do that? Yes, people do! And it’s more common than you think—but it’s not the kind of information people usually share about themselves.

So, before we go any further, let’s take a moment to remember that being an empowered and self-actualized person doesn’t preclude:

a) looking the other way,
b) letting someone else dictate the terms of the relationship,
c) not caring what your partner does as long as the relationship is solid.

The Things We Do for Love

You get the picture. There are probably HUNDREDS of reasons why someone would put themselves in that position—and I, for one, think none of them are any of our concern. Not that I’m suggesting that the woman in question is any of the above—merely that we’re all just trying to do the best we can, and maybe not as wisely as possible when love rears its seductive little head.

Next week in Part 2 of this post, we’ll look at the phenomenon of power as an aphrodisiac—and absolute power as the ultimate turn-on. In the meantime, feel free to write in with your own comments and join the dialog already in progress.

With Pleasure,

Dr. J.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Heal Your Self and You Heal Yourself!

“The people who say they don’t have time to take care of themselves will soon discover they’re spending all their time being sick.”
Patricia Alexander, Book of Comforts

I’m Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired!

That’s right: I’ve been thinking about this subject a lot lately—not only because several members of my family have been felled by this season’s killer flu, but most especially because one person who is very special to me has just been through major surgery. “But Dr. J, I don’t get sick, and I’ve never had surgery, so what does any of this have to do with me?” All of us, whatever our age, will eventually experience some physically challenging period in our lives which can affect our sexuality. So file this away under “Dr. J’s Wise Words of Wisdom for the Future.”

Talk about Opening Up and Sharing!

Ten years ago, I had a minor surgical procedure myself, and I remember quite distinctly how easy it was for me to shut down my own sexuality while I was going through the healing process.

This Just In...

Of course, who should know better than Dr. J that this is the worst possible thing to do to yourself? Why? Because our individual sexual health is inextricably entwined with our overall health. Are you feeling poorly? Well, remember how great you feel when the object of your desire touches you; not to mention how wonderful you feel when you touch someone you desire? And let’s not forget how fantastic you feel when you have an orgasm! So even if you’re bedridden, that doesn’t mean you can’t try visualizing yourself as sexy and desirable as all get-out. Open yourself up to them, and those old urges will return before you know it. Keep in mind that an orgasm stimulates the release of endorphins. And just what are endorphins? Those special hormones that help elevate your mood and contribute to a sense of well-being.

Here are some fun, indoor ideas for those times when you’re recovering from illness, injury, or just feeling like it’s an emotional rainy day.

Three Words: Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize!

Ever notice what school kids do when they’re fettered with a cast? They paint it, they draw on it, sometimes they even make it into an artistic collage—but the important thing is they do anything and everything they can to adorn it so that it becomes an attractive part of their ensemble. Think about it, when you look better, it actually helps you feel better too.

So, is your arm sporting a large bandage? Hmm. How about tying a colorful scarf around it? Got the flu or a cold? Just because you’re stuck in bed doesn’t mean you can’t wear your nice PJs or lingerie. Whatever the situation, when you’re stuck with lemons, there’s no reason you can’t make up a batch of sweet, delicious lemonade.

You get the idea: the more you turn all those various mementos of healing into symbols of attractiveness, the sexier you’ll feel.

Hey Everybody, Let’s Eroticize Surgical Stitches!

Wow. Now there’s a challenge! Let’s see…what can we do? How about asking a partner to gently rub the area with a bit of Vitamin E oil? Double bonus, that: Vitamin E not only helps heal your body, but being touched helps heal your soul. That’s like seeing a dollar on the ground, picking it up and realizing it’s a ten dollar bill. Let me help you with the math—that would be a good thing.

Here’s wishing you all a happy, healthy, sexy March. And don’t forget: Welcome Spring with a bang!

With Pleasure,
Dr. J