Current Issues

Do women need to be ‘whores’ to enjoy sex?

I started reading a book called ‘Finding God Through Sex’, by David Deida, ‘one of the world’s most insightful and provocative teachers of our time’, so the blurb at the back says. I have had issues in the area of sexual fulfilment myself, being influenced by the Christian society I live in (but am not necessarily a part of) and having what I would describe as guilt associated with sexual pleasure, whether with myself or a partner in whom I trust and love.

I had hoped that this book would help me to discover the divine in this area of my life and help me to embrace my sexuality more. I had hoped to gain more insight as to how I could honour my own divinity through sex. I had also thought it might help me to overcome some of my own negative emotions regarding sexual enjoyment.

I won’t say it has done nothing for me: I now understand that it is possible to become aware of the divine through sexual expression and enjoyment. In fact, it seems it is one of the best ways to commune with the divine and infinite love. I will be more aware of certain things I do in my future love making and see how it brings me closer to the divine and my own, and my partner’s, inherent divinity.

What I wasn’t prepared for were the several references to ‘whore’ he made throughout the book.

You can be a whore, making him beg for more. (Page 120*)

The offending passage...

This is just one example of the many references in the book.

My immediate thought was – why do you have to be a whore to know what you’re doing in bed? I haven’t had that many sexual partners in my life, but I would not consider myself bad in bed and I haven’t had any complaints. In fact, having an honest, exploratory, trusting, open and communicative relationship with one partner did more for my experience than the few randoms ever did.

Why can’t a mother, maiden or Goddess leave her partner feeling this way? And why is this term used in reference to a sexually experienced woman? Why can’t she just be a woman?

Also, why do you have to be a whore to make him beg for more? Why couldn’t you do this with the only person you ever slept with, if you know them deeply and understand what turns them on? I would much rather be ‘inexperienced’ and have my partner chomping at the bit, than have slept with a thousand guys to the same end. The point here is, the number of partners you’ve had doesn’t even matter…

Now I think about it, why has he not mentioned this term in relation to the men? Why is it that only women are referred to as whores? Most of the men I know have had many more partners than I have, why don’t they get called whores? Why is their ‘experience’ not making them more accountable for our pleasure?

Another ‘offending comment’ was the following:

You can be a demoness, tearing him apart.*

Again, another derogatory term in reference to a sexually promiscuous woman. Why do I have to be possessed by a demon to enjoy sex with my partner? Can’t I be a Goddess (Aphrodite?), or a mother, or a nerd, or (Gods forbid!) myself!! Why can’t it be the power of God/Goddess that moves me to such extreme excitement that I want to tear my lover limb from limb? Why can’t it be the power of the divine and my own love that gets me to such an extreme and pleasurable emotion? Why can’t it be my love of life and all it has to offer? Or simply the fact that our emotion centre is close to our aggression centre in the brain and the two often overlap… (first year Psych, coming in handy!!)

The answer is simple – the patriarchy.

Please, don’t get this confused with ‘men’, for men have been just as hurt and emasculated by the expectations of the patriarchy, as I have mentioned before . The patriarchy is essentially a certain group of men (usually white men) telling everyone else what to do, wear, be etc out of a misguided need for power. This has lead to many issues throughout the last 5000 years, including the oppression and subjugation of women, children and most racial groups. And, it has lead to the pervading rape culture and recent development of ‘incels’ who believe they are entitled to sex (Google it, it’s a thing…).

It is also the reason why women are labelled ‘whores’ if they are sexually active, experienced and enjoy sex. Why we have to be ‘demons’ in order to feel the strong sexual energy that most men feel on a daily basis is beyond me. I guess it goes back to the ‘Adam and Eve’ thing and the resultant repression of female sexuality. Why do women have to live up to certain archetypes in the first place?

Do we need to reclaim the term ‘whore’ like some racial groups have reclaimed their derogatory terms? I don’t think so, because I dislike this appropriation in all its forms. The intent of the use might be different, but it’s hard to erase 2000+ years of energy, no matter how well meaning you are. The negativity is built into the words, permeates them. This is not the answer.

For me, the answer is to stop using them all together. Not out of fun with our friends. Not in reference to women we don’t know. Not to women who dress a certain way. Not for anyone. Ever.

We also need to reclaim our sexuality. Make people (yes people, women are included in this as many of us seem to be as confused as the rest of the world) aware that women are sexual beings and that it is ok to explore your sexuality. It is ok to try new things and express this side of ourselves. We can be the goddess in the bedroom and it’s ok!

Also, we need to educate people on the true purpose of sex. Many people are having sex for the wrong reasons – myself included for a very long time. Sex is often seen as a way to be accepted and approved of by, not only the people they are sleeping with, but society as a whole. Men and women are using sex to achieve a state of belonging and love that in reality can only be found from within oneself. Again, I speak from experience.

I see this happening with teenagers at schools I teach in, girls who brag about sleeping with X amount of boys at a party and think this is cool. Teenage girls walking around asking the boys how big their dicks are. They get short term approval from the guys, but it never lasts and people need to be aware of this.

Maybe this last will be addressed in a separate post, as this has turned out to be a much deeper issue than I had first thought. The issues of derogatory terms, warping of sexual attitudes and the rule of the patriarchy are becoming more and more important to me. I have been affected and hurt by the all of these things in my life and I have a desire to educate people so they don’t have to be hurt by them either.

We have so much to unlearn about sex and sexuality, but we can do it. One comment at a time.

 

Spiritual Awakening

How I Learned to Love Myself

For many of us, love is easy to give. We love our parents, our friends, our children, our cat, our neighbour etc, etc.

We give our love away freely, and often to people who don’t deserve it. We give it to people who use and abuse it, betraying our trust. A lot of the time we continue to give it to these people even after they have broken our hearts.

We often find it hard to love the one person who matters most in our world. Ourselves.

We ignore our own desires, our needs, our wants. We betray ourselves by doing the things we say we won’t do anymore, be it food or lending something to an unappreciative sibling. We don’t do the things we know we should, like say no or exercise.

We don’t honour and love ourselves, because society teaches us it is wrong to love ourselves. If we get a shred of self-esteem we are told not to be ‘up yourself’ or ‘full of yourself’.

We don’t know ourselves, because society tells us that being alone is wrong, that there is something wrong with people who would rather be on their own. That you have to be popular and spend heaps of time with people to be happy.

I personally struggled with self love. Every time I looked in the mirror I hated what I saw, wishing I was different. Wishing I had this face, or this body, or this hair. I didn’t even like who I was as a person.

Then my awakening journey lead me along the path of self-discovery and I realised a lot of things about myself. I didn’t love myself, because I didn’t know myself. I had spent the last 2 decades trying to fit in with everyone else and to be like everyone else that I no longer knew me.

I also discovered the truth in the saying ‘to love another, you must first love yourself.’ I realised I had never truly, deeply loved my boyfriends, my friends, even my own family. This may in part be because I’m an empath, and we feel emotions way more intensely (an idea I can verify through personal experience), often leading us to shut our emotions down, but I don’t think it’s the whole reason. I didn’t know how to love, because I didn’t love myself.

So, as I followed this path of self-discovery I found a few ways that helped me to build a relationship with myself and learn to love myself:

  • Learned my love language and practised it on myself: mine is quality time and affection. So, I started spending ‘quality time’ with myself. This included writing, reading, watching TV, exercise. I mustered the courage to take myself out on a movie date and a lunch date, which eventually lead me to taking myself on a holiday! This quality time allowed me to get to know myself as I would another person and I gradually began to love the person I was. So, find your love language and start practising it on yourself.
Me, on my solo holiday to Byron Bay.
  • Practised Self-love: this is about learning to love the physical you, as well as the emotional. Many of us will say ‘I love my personality’ or ‘I love my intelligence’, but few of us can say ‘I love my body’. I have found this is because we don’t know our bodies. We haven’t explored them the way a lover would. We have to learn to make love to ourselves. This the main idea I took from an amazing book, Unleashing the Sex Goddess in Every Woman, by Olivia St. Clair. Along with advice about how to unlock your special potential in the bedroom, she says that one of the best ways to understand what you like, is to find out for yourself with yourself. I discovered that the more I made love to myself, the more love I felt for myself. So, the next time the urge takes you, don’t see it as a means to an end. Rather, explore yourself, your body, be present with you and make love to you.
  • Exercise: this is how I learned what my body was capable of and to appreciate what it could do. I never thought it would take me the 20k round trip from my house to the beach, let alone on a 3 day hike up the Andes!! But it did both of these things, and more. Now, I practice yoga and ride my bicycle often, not only because it makes me happy, but when I get up that hill, I can appreciate myself and love my body more. I also practice yoga with intention: my personal mantra is ‘strong body, strong mind, strong heart’. I am definitely learning how strong my body is, and how strong my heart is. So, find what you love doing and do it! Have the intention of it building the relationship with your body and your self and it will.

Doing yoga on the Andes. Well, maybe just a few poses for the camera! I had just hiked for a day and a half and there wasn’t much left.
  • Energetic hygiene: as I said before, I am an empath and part of the reason I didn’t know myself was because I had so many other people’s emotions and ideas floating around inside of myself. So, if I was going to sponge other people’s emotions, they better be good ones, right? I made a decision to surround myself with people who uplifted me rather than pulled me down. This was often hard, because I truly did enjoy the company of these people. The day finally came when I had to call it. As usual, I had hung on for way too long, but I had to learn the lesson to be ruthless with my own well-being in this way. I now love myself enough to be ruthless with what I put inside of my body, both physically and energetically.
  • Practise integrity, especially with yourself: you have to be honest with yourself first, and then with others. This second one is hard, because I never want to hurt people’s feelings, but I’ve decided that my feelings are more important and, as long as I’ve delivered what I need to with tact, how they react is their issue. I need to be who I want to be in all areas. When you practice integrity, you start to be the person you want to be and this fosters personal love. I am not sure how it works, but it did for me. Don’t just talk the talk, walk the walk. Remove that mask and practice what you preach.
  • Stop comparing yourself to others: this one sounds pretty obvious, but I found this one quite difficult to do. We are constantly bombarded with advertising that shows us who we could be if we had something we don’t already have. The truth is, we already have what we need, the rest is aesthetics. I had to stop comparing my life and myself to others, because it was making me depressed. Why didn’t I have the husband and the kids and the fancy house and car and holiday home? Why was I single in my 30s, still renting, with a car that is almost as old as my youngest sibling? The truth is, this is my life. I have made decisions based on what matters most to me. Other people have done the exact same, it just so happens that our core values are different, nothing more. I accept responsibility for where I am now, and not in a bad way because I am very blessed with a lot of freedom and independence. I learned to appreciate what my life is, and learned to love myself in the process.
Love this little flier! ❤ 

This is by no means an exhaustive list of ways you can love yourself more. It is merely what I did, and still do on a daily basis. As usual, take on what feels right for you and leave the rest. If one of these strategies helps you to find self-love, then I am happy.

Just remember, it is an ongoing process. We will be faced with challenges along the way (as I have very recently), but we need to remember to come back to ourselves and spend time alone to reconnect with us for it to have any lasting effect. We need to remember to keep practising those things that made us fall in love with ourselves in the first place. Like any relationship, it doesn’t just develop on its own, you have to put something into it. That being said, the relationship you have with yourself will be the one that never ends. 💖😇🕉