Sex Is Normal!

by Sheri Winston, CNM, RN, BSN, LMT
I’m just back from the CFLE Sex Ed Conference and reminded of a few things. One – I love hanging out with other people who think sex is normal, that talking about sex is normal and that learning about sex is, absolutely normal.
Being not just a teacher, but a perpetual student, I, as always, learned new things. Here are a few gems that I picked up.
The first was from the excellent Sex and Happiness presentation, given by Molly Stranahan & Bill Taverner. They spoke of the distinction between happiness and pleasure. Although I quibble with the idea that pleasure is necessarily fleeting (after all, I teach how to have extended orgasms!), I really do get that happiness is a sustained and sustainable condition that includes long-term satisfaction, contentment and purpose.
The other piece that stays with me is from Al Vernacchio’s excellent presentation, You’re Out, Baseball! A New Model for Teaching the Concept of Sexual Activity. I’ve been a critic of the baseball metaphor for sex for a very long time, while fascinated that it still holds such sway. But I hadn’t spent much time recently dissecting the ‘sex as baseball’ model. In his entertaining and informative presentation, I was reminded about one of the fundamentally problematic issues. The baseball-sex model is inherently sexist and dehumanizing since it makes the women the field the game is played upon while the man is the player. I very much appreciated his alternate model. (I’m not telling what that is – it will ruin the plot for you if you ever get the privilege of enjoying him present). However, his model is cooperative, pleasure-filled, egalitarian and delicious!
I look forward to future tasty, informative and useful CFLE conferences – a place for all us sex geeks to share, learn and get our batteries charged up to head back out into the world where sex is not yet normal.€

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