You are listening to The Midlife Sex Coach for Women™ Podcast episode 74.
Welcome to The Midlife Sex Coach for Women™ Podcast, the only show that combines a fun personality, medical knowledge, sexual counseling, and life coaching together. To create unique sex coaching that helps busy women awaken their libidos, address intimacy issues, and learn how to express their sexuality for the rest of their days. Here is your host, certified life coach and sexual counselor, Dr. Sonia Wright.
Sonia: Hello, hello, hello, Diamonds. It’s Dr. Sonia and I am so excited here to be with Coach Donna. And we have another empowering conversation. And we wanted to do this conversation on reinventing Valentine’s Day. So, Donna are you there?
Donna: Yes, I am. So excited to be here. Thank you, yes.
Sonia: I’m so excited to have you. We have too much fun when we’re together, but we cannot not have fun, and hangout, and talk, and do all the fun things that we need to do together as BFS.
Donna: Yeah, we shouldn’t be left unsupervised for long but this is what happens.
Sonia: This is what happens. Exactly. So today we are going to talk all about Valentine’s Day. And on my last episode I was talking a lot about reinventing Valentine’s Day. I just think there’s so much pressure put on Valentine’s Day. And I honestly I didn’t have time to look at the whole history behind Valentine’s Day but I know it was not meant to be a day for marketing, and money making. It was supposed to be a day about love. And then why does it have to be just one day?
Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves and our partners, on society in general saying that Valentine’s Day has to be the epitome of love, and sex, and relationships, and everything has to be perfect, and flowers, and chocolate? I am just like, why? Why? So, I mentioned that when you go into Walgreens or one of those places and it’s time to buy the Valentine’s Day card. And I tend to be a last minute person and so I’m always there looking for the cards, but I’m also looking at the people looking at the cards because I find that just as interesting.
And they always look really upset and stressed out. And this is their ticket to get in the door.
Donna: Yeah, the door.
Sonia: So, I just wanted to talk about all things Valentines and then how we can reinvent this. So, what are your ideas about Valentine’s Day?
Donna: Well, my ideas now around Valentine’s Day are simply to enjoy it, to express appreciation, gratitude for everyone. It inspires me to go back to even the box of Valentine’s Day cards that you get for kids to give one out to all of their classmates. They’re little and you could maybe put a sucker through it or maybe nothing it all. And it’s just a little card that says to and from.
And go in the building where my day job is find the custodians and hand it out to them. See people and appreciate people. So, it really just heightens that for me. And I think that would be fun. And I think doing what would be fun is what I’d love to do.
Sonia: Yeah, I love that idea, that’s so great. Yeah, it doesn’t have to be about romantic love. And I love how you mentioned appreciation and gratitude for whatever role that a person is playing in your life for however long. And I like to bring up the idea of not just gratitude for our partners and other people in our lives, but gratitude for ourself and love for ourself. I think that Valentine’s Day is an incredible opportunity to really sit with self-love. I think that if you are unable to love yourself you really are unable to love other people unconditionally.
And of course, perfection is not what we’re going after. But if we can to a certain extent work on enjoying self-love from a place where it’s unconditional, where we get to the place where you’re like, I’m kind of quirky. And yes, I’ve got stuff going on. But at the same time, I’m halfway decent, I kind of like myself.
Donna: I’m halfway decent.
Sonia: Halfway decent and the other half is okay too.
Donna: With that, I think a lot of clients I work with are much better at pushing the appreciation, and the affirmation, and even spoiling other people, others other than themselves. You’re uncomfortable with themselves being spoiled or just doted on, if you will. And so, depending on the people, if I’m working with them or just knowing there’s so many people at different places in their growth, in lives.
But sometimes I would highly recommend, I mean I like the idea anyway, but there are some people who literally it would be a challenge and so therefore therapeutic for them to indulge themselves. So, whereas they might take their money and feel okay, here’s my budget for Valentine’s Day maybe. And they go buy stuff and they immediately start thinking, who can I give this to? Okay, well, okay, but you must keep something for yourself. And find ways to indulge yourself.
And I happily will refer to it as indulging because where they’re at in life, there are also anti-indulge because I don’t deserve it.
Sonia: And then I kind of want to challenge. Is it an indulgence to be good to yourself? Is it just something we should expect and normalize it?
Donna: Normalize it, that was the word coming on.
Sonia: Yeah, that it’s just a normal part that we love ourselves as much as we love other people. And we can give ourselves gifts or just be kind to ourselves. Even be kind to ourselves and giving ourselves a nap. But so often I find that people think about Valentine’s Day as I give you this, therefore you give me that.
Donna: Quid pro quo day.
Sonia: I give you some Valentine’s Day card, and flowers, and chocolate and hopefully I’ll get some sex and I should get some sex out of it. Or it’s kind of the way it’s been done, especially the way that society has influenced women’s minds, the patriarchy, yes, I said it. But this, Valentine’s Day becomes about value, how much other people value us. It’s almost like, I got this for Valentine’s Day, or I got diamonds, I’m really appreciated. Or I got really a big bouquet of flowers, I got, I got, I got. In order to represent somebody’s love and appreciation for that individual.
Or if you can – I don’t like to use the word ‘coerce’ but in some ways don’t come in the house if you don’t have chocolates and some flowers. Because that is going to be the symbol or that’s going to represent how good and valuable I am in this world. And so that’s what I don’t like about Valentine’s Day, that it’s, you’re once again looking for somebody else to validate you, somebody else’s actions and beliefs.
Obviously it’s your thoughts about their actions and beliefs that brings you back to this place where if they buy you all the flowers, and all the diamonds, and all the everything then you are worthy enough. And honestly you’re worthy enough right now. That’s the important thing to understand. And you get to be kind to yourself right now. And you get to love yourself right now. And what if we didn’t make Valentine’s Day mean any of those things except an opportunity to love yourself or to love another individual and nothing more?
Donna: Yeah. I like that. I am all in favor of helping individuals, and particularly women, come to a place of giving themselves more choice and not feeling backed into a corner where it must be this way. And that comes back to expectations. And for me that comes back to programming and conditioning which you alluded to, patriarchy. However, you see that coming in, expectations and how much of your expectations are truly what you want or what you think you’re supposed to want, or are you being conditioned to want? And is in fact maybe the void of connection.
Sonia: Yes. I love that, when you bring in the connection. I’m always about the connection, the pleasure, the satisfaction, the love, the laughter, whatever that is. Those are the things that are not really measurable in terms of how big, buy a bouquet of flowers are. But those are really the important aspect, any relation with yourself and with another is just the connection that you have.
So, what if we took this pressure off of this 24 hour period of time? What kind of bullshit is this, this 24 hour period that represents your whole relationship? Or who thought of this idea? So, let’s take the pressure off.
Donna: Right. And I like that very much. So, the people who are trying to express themselves to you are not guessing at what you want or guessing that their offering is acceptable. And then somehow that is a reflection of they’re being acceptable. I really liked how you talked about in your episode 23, I really liked how you talked about the loving year and taking this day back. And again, for me that, reevaluate expectations. And it might be that it’s once a year just to remind us to put that love and appreciation on the front burner.
But then that’s just a habit of making your relationship more of a priority and keeping it on the front burner, keeping it on the front of your mind. I mean we talk about where energy goes. Sorry, where focused those energy flows, the same with relationship, whether it’s your business or whether it’s your fitness. Then it’s going to happen with relationships and is that the habit of your relationships? Is that who you are? And I know you ask about that. Who do you want to be? You touched on the concept of a loving year.
Who are you now when it comes loving yourself and others? And how do you want to show up in a year of loving you, loving others, making time for you, making time for others and being appreciative. And so, what I’m coming around to with this is the idea that that can be any day of the week that ends in Y. As long as that’s a habit for you and that’s what I want it to be for me in my relationship with David is a habit of being mindful of my partner that they know that they’re not just the one I love.
And we actually had this conversation last night. I said, “So you know I love you because I tell you that. But how do you feel loved by me?”
Sonia: Good question.
Donna: And he’s like, “Oh.” I didn’t see it coming but after a few minutes then he could list off things and explain that. Because I know that I love him and I know that I believe I communicate I love him. But is the way I communicate I love him the way he hears and feels I love him? And we’ve been down that road with the five love languages as well. And so not just, “Hey, I got you this. You should feel loved.” But speaking his language and not just sex.
Sonia: Yeah. Well, it’s not just sex.
Sonia: Isn’t this podcast all about sex and here I am advocating to stop sex for a minute and see what happens. See what the foundation of your relationship is.
Donna: See what else comes up. It had to be said. [Inaudible], sorry, not sorry, [crosstalk].
Sonia: I have lots to say about that. The first thing is you made a comment about the days of the week ending in Y. And honestly, my brain was like, what day of the week doesn’t end in Y? I’m like, wait, I’m a bit slow today. But yeah, I love that concept of the loving year and that Valentine’s 2022 and Valentine’s Day 2023 get to be the bookends of the loving year. And how can you share that love? And this is about knowing your own love language for yourself and knowing the love language if you happen to be partnered, of your partner.
Because very often we have different love languages. And this causes a lot of miscommunication and misunderstanding. In fact, I coach on this quite a bit. It happens that one partner’s love language is acts of service and words of affirmation. And the other partner’s love language is touch, their love language is touch, touch, touch. And so, they don’t have the same love language. And so how one person may be trying to show appreciation to the other person, in the context of what they think is important, may not be leaving its mark on the partner because they’re not seeing.
So, words of affirmation really don’t matter and acts of service maybe don’t matter to that partner. They would like some touch. So, they’re not feeling loved at all. So, I love how you asked your partner how do they know that you’re loving them, so that you can do a check-in and make sure that they’re aware that you’re loving them. It’s important to understand your own love language because I think it’s important for you to know how to care for yourself and how to be there for yourself. And just in case you also have a partner and so that they’re aware.
But then if you are partnered I think it’s important, or if you have a child or whatever it is, another loving person in your life, a person that you love, to know what their love language is. With my partner I check in with them and when we started the relationship I asked them to write out what they need in order to feel loved. So, I would know ahead of time. And that’s been very helpful. And I’ll go back to that and I’ll be like – because I tend to be a very logical person in my mind.
And for me my love language is acts of service. So, I’ll think that that will suffice. But my partner’s love language happens to be words of affirmation are very high and touch are right up there next to that. So, it’s important for me to recognize that they need the touch and they need the words of affirmation. And if I’m doing something that I think is fabulous in terms of acts of service that might not be anything that matters to them at all. So, part of the loving year is to know how many ways can I love you? Let me count the ways.
Donna: You kept a journal of that, yeah.
Sonia: Yeah. Actually because of that I did start a journal. And I attempted to write, it was called the love journal. But my handwriting is abominable and nobody can read it.
Sonia: So, it didn’t matter if words of affirmation were in the love journal if nobody could read it. So, then I actually switched to a Google document which may not seem as romantic until you realize, at least you can read what I’m writing.
Donna: It’s quite an act of service isn’t it, for you to put it in such a way that it can be read? Yes.
Sonia: That it can be read.
Donna: It’s very thoughtful.
Sonia: Well, there’s my logical mind. And if they want me to write it out, I’ll write it out but then I’ll stick it in the Google document so that they could decipher it. Alright, so we talked about the loving year. And I had all these ideas of things that people could do or change it up. One was also deciding not to have sex at all on Valentine’s Day. You could have it on any other day but not have sex. Because when I talk about sexual intimacy, that is built on a foundation of overall intimacy which is built on a foundation of communication.
So, it’s kind of getting back to the communication and the overall intimacy. And sometimes it’s easy to just have the sex. Sometimes that is okay, I can check off a box, that to do list check. It’s Valentine’s Day so it must be time to have some sex, let me slap on some lube and do one and okay, I’m done till next year. But what if you take out the sex, what are you left with? And that’s really what you can look at and evaluate in terms of how things are going in your relationship. Yeah, so yeah, so take out the sex. What do you think about that?
Donna: I mean I think that that’s kind of for me totally fine because just the idea of we have to, builds the pressure. Check the box on the chocolates, and the flowers, and a nice meal, and taking time to think about me. And then alright, we know how this night’s going to end, kind of thing. And again, the expectation, if that’s mutual because you have connection and because you’ve been communicating, fantastic.
And ladies, I just want to remind you, anybody listening that depending on what’s important to your guy, moving this to Sunday may not be a good option because that’s Super Bowl Sunday this year alone, February 13, it’s Super Bowl Sunday. So, a heads up, you are welcome. So, plan ahead.
Sonia: But that would be the perfect day for minentine’s. And I do want [crosstalk].
Donna: Girls’ night.
Sonia: No, I don’t want to have it like a heteronormative thing. So, any partner that is really interested in football you may not want to be scheduling something on February 13th, unless it involves an amazing football spread and stuff like that. But if you have a partner that is so inclined and very into football and you are not, that is a perfect minentine. So, let’s talk a little bit about minentine’s.
Donna: Yeah. Well, how can you treat yourself? What would be a treat for you? What would you enjoy? Is that you and some girls go out? Or is that you, get a book, get a glass of wine and plan or go out if you want to. Whether you want a bubble bath or you want a float tape, you want a massage. Well, how will you, and how will enjoy that for you? Maybe you love to garden and that really lights you up, okay. And so, you’ll be planning your gardening out for spring for those of you who live in a place that’s a frozen tundra like Dr. Sonia.
Sonia: Wait, wait, wait, because I have this thing and it’s an indoor garden, except I unplugged it the other day. And so, I’ll have to put a picture in the show notes because I’ve killed off my indoor garden in two days.
Donna: Is that like a tower garden?
Sonia: Yeah, it is a tower garden, yeah, and I’m going to put the picture in the show notes so you can see how – I just don’t have a green thumb. There’s a reason – yeah, I killed it off. I unplugged it and now it’s all drooping in the corner but I plugged it back in.
Donna: I’m all good to spend my money on food. Somebody else grew and showed them my appreciation at the market.
Sonia: And it’s from a gardener, I had this planned to become a gardener, so that was part of my minentine’s. I got a juicer because I wanted to give myself more micronutrients. And I also got an indoor garden so I could start growing some stuff indoors. And it was, actually it worked. I grew romaine and I have three berries on the thing, three little cherry tomatoes that refused to change to red. But I’m going for it because of the minentine thing. I want to grow veggies for myself. Yeah, I could not grow. I think I grew one string bean.
Apparently you can’t grow these beans inside. And my broccoli and cauliflower is non-existent. But I have about five pieces of kale. But my butter lettuce and my romaine grew like wildfire. It’s just all over the place. So, one of my minentine’s was to have my indoor garden.
Donna: Congratulations. And there are people, they may not like smell good stuff and that kind of thing. So, what is your doting on you? What’s your pleasure that may not be sexual at all in nature? And so, you would enjoy the expression of self-appreciation, appreciating somebody else, maybe it’s going to be minentine, then the self-appreciation, what would you enjoy? And it doesn’t matter what I think about it or even what I suggest. What matters is your answer to what would you enjoy and you owe nobody an explanation.
And then you start defining your own expectations. I love the concept that just answering that question right there might help you start giving voice to your own expectations, your own wants. And you do it once and you can do it twice, and then you start developing a pattern. I like that for you. I like that.
Sonia: That’s pretty good. I like that idea. And I think it’s important to talk to yourself and ask the question about expectations and why, what will that mean about, what do you want to make it mean? If you get the flowers, what does that mean? So, you get to figure out. And then you get to provide it for yourself such that then you’re just coming into Valentine’s Day just for the experience of loving yourself or loving another person. And not that it needs to mean something. And then I talked about the Valentine’s burger bar.
Donna: What a segue.
Sonia: What would you put in your Valentine’s burger bar or your Valentine’s Day bar? Not the ones that has tons of cocktails. I’m not advocating everybody drink up a storm, I mean that’s up to you, stay safe. Be in your house. But if you could put anything in Valentine’s Day, what would you put in there? Would you put the cuddles in there? Would you put sleeping in, recommitting to yourself or to your lover? Time to dream about vacations and life just in general. Maybe a cooking class.
What would you put in your Valentine’s Day bar, just like a burger bar where you can put some pickles, and lettuce, and chirata on there? What would you want to put in your Valentine’s Day bar?
Donna: You know what? I pondered that, listening to episode 73 and I wrote some stuff down. And just now I realize you know what? I think it would be fun to take the day off. Why the heck not? And if you plan ahead, so I can, you know, there’s allowances for that. So, if I plan ahead for next year which is fine with me, and just plan to take the day off. And if I want to sleep in, sleep in. And for me now, and again this is very specific, I would love the peacefulness and time to reflect getting up kind of lazy, which my dogs still will not let that be terribly long.
Get some coffee and enjoying the world getting going and not having to get going with it. And reflect on that. And then if, you know, and you and I talked about this year, that we have – David’s doing some training. And so, it’s no big deal. I’m happy. Let’s invest in you. And that’s the timeframe for it so let’s get it done. And I’m not put out a bit that you’re not available on the 14th, the evening of the 14th, great. But if I took the day off and for fun I let it be a reflection and maybe even – anyway I just like this idea, the loving year and giving yourself some parameters for that.
And even, you could even take Valentine’s Day, or you could let that day be a model. Maybe this year you don’t have time enough to schedule that. You could just say to yourself, look, okay, I’m going to take March 1st off, that’s going to be my day one of the loving year. And I’ll let it in Valentine’s Day 2023. And I’m going to document that, I’m going to write out, what do I enjoy. And I’m going to challenge myself to express myself to and for myself, to and for others. And maybe there are some greater causes.
Close myself, close to home, next layer of the circle of community, and then to other layers of that, for me. My brain’s blowing up on this idea now. Because what global cause can I commit myself to? And on any level, giving to, whether that’s financially, praying for, if you’re a praying person. So now you’ve got some focused energy, but getting support for whether it’s a resource or your time. So, on every layer of the world that you touch, the loving year and what would be a goal for that, I’m all going off on that idea now, so pardon me.
Sonia: I love, I love how excited you are about the loving year. And yeah, yeah, there’s so much that we can do. There’s so many ways that we can redefine Valentine’s Day, Valentine’s year, the loving year. It can be anything that we want. And just it’s time to just throw out other people’s concept and society’s concept of what Valentine’s Day should be about. Make it about love and just do what it is that you would like to do. So, Coach Donna and Dr. Sonia are giving you permission to do whatever the hell you want to do on Valentine’s Day and your Valentine’s loving year.
You have heard it first here. We are ready to write whatever permission slips need to be written in order for people to have a fabulous year and to not have to – what is the word that I want? Not have to subscribe to this concept of Valentine’s Day.
Donna: Yeah, totally, subscribe, yeah, that’s exactly it. You don’t have to subscribe to anybody else’s idea. What are your expectations? What are you desires? How do you want that to look like? And figure out, when you’re doing stuff, are you taking it from a bucket that says theirs or are you taking it from a bucket of choice that says mine?
Sonia: And that’s so good, yeah. And I love that. We can end on the fact that you have the choice. It is your choice 100% what you want your Valentine’s Day, week, month, year to look like. It’s 100% your choice. Alright, Diamonds, as usual, this has been a fantastic empowering conversation. Thank you, Coach Donna.
Donna: Thank you.
Sonia: It’s always so much fun. And I will spend the rest of my life pondering why every day of the week ends in Y.
Donna: Because day ends in Y.
Sonia: Oh, wait. Well, Diamonds, thank you so much for another empowering conversation. And just remember, you have the choice, you can decide whatever you want to do for Valentine’s Day, Valentine’s week, month or year and we love you. And Dr. Sonia and Coach Donna are out.
Hey Diamonds, do you want to reignite the passion that’s gone missing from your life? Do you want to want to want it again? You know I’m on a mission to end the emotional pain and isolation that women experience associated with sexual difficulties. And many of you also know that I was once in that place where I was experiencing little to no sexual intimacy in my life. And I kept thinking that there was something that was wrong with me, that I wasn’t enough. I wasn’t attractive enough. I wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t smart enough to fix this problem.
And I was worried all the time that my relationship was too far gone because of this lack of intimacy. Well, you know what? I was right about one thing. The relationship didn’t last. But even though the relationship didn’t last I committed to doing the work that I needed to do to own my sexuality. And now I have this amazing sex life and it’s everything that I wanted it to be. And I’m also committed to helping my Diamonds by teaching them the same strategies that I figured out in order to revitalize the intimacy in their life.
So if you want to stop feeling broken, if you want to stop feeling shame and guilt about sexuality, if you want to feel more comfortable with your sexuality and tap into that pleasure then I’m here for you Diamonds. First of all know that there’s nothing that’s gone wrong with you. You’re not broken. And you know what? You can solve your intimacy issues. You can let go of that shame and guilt, and you can tap into that passionate person that’s just waiting to come out.
Let’s get on a strategy call together. And let’s discuss how we can work together and how I can help you. And know that a strategy call, it’s like a 100% a safe place, there’s no judgment. We’ll talk about your intimacy situation which is what’s going on right now. We’re also going to talk about your intimacy goals, what you would like your intimacy to look like in the future. And then we’ll talk about how we could possibly work together to come up with a personalized strategy plan for you so you can get the results that you need.
So, Diamonds, I’m here for you. Don’t wait another minute, book that consultation call with me today. And I can’t wait to talk to you. You can get that consultation call by going to soniawrightmd.as.me and the link is also in the show notes. Okay, have a great day. I can’t wait to talk to you. Take care.