Welcome back to the podcast, Diamonds, it’s great to be here with you! Last week we talked about ‘to-do list sex’, which is engaging in sex simply to check it off a to-do list. This week, we’re talking about the all-important ‘for-you sex’, which is any act of sexual intimacy that leads to increased pleasure, communication, connection, and satisfaction for you.
When you’re on an airplane, you are advised in an emergency to put your own mask on before helping others. So why is sex any different? The answer is, it’s not! You have to prioritize self-care to avoid burnout and a lack of intimacy in your relationship. By putting your own needs first, you’ll improve communication, place a new focus on pleasure, and maintain an increased sense of connection within your relationship.
Join me this week where I explain why self-care is the foundation of for-you sex. I discuss the importance of communicating your needs and share some tips to help you find what turns you on and off. Remember, variety is the spice of life – there’s so much more you could be exploring. It’s time to put yourself first!
You are listening to The Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast, episode 3.
Female Announcer: 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.
Hello from mildly chilly Minnesota. I actually just checked on the weather and it’s actually 39 degrees outside. And yes, it’s 5:00am and I am in my basement once again, you know me, avoiding my eight year old and trying to get some work done. So it’s just you, it’s me and my microphone. And actually I’m beginning to look forward to this time together. What I’ll do is I’ll post a picture of my recording studio so you have a sense of what my downstairs area looks like where I’m recording and talking to you. And you can see where all the magic happens at The Midlife Sex Coach for Women.
So this is where I record my podcast, but it’s also where I do all of my coaching as well. So it’s a fun behind the scenes kind of look at my life and what The Midlife Sex Coach for Women looks like. And you can also see my beautiful flower backdrop in all its glory that I have when I’m recording and when I’m doing my coaching as well.
Okay diamonds let’s get started today. So like I promised, today we’re going to be talking about for you sex. And this brings up an important concept as well, which is self-care. One of the most important factors that leads to, to do list sex, which I talked about last week in the last episode is this lack of self-care and the inability to take care of ourselves first. As women we tend to put everybody else before ourselves.
We prioritize everybody else’s needs before our own needs, our children, our jobs, our partners. And it’s not natural for us to put ourselves first. But you need to understand that as women we kind of carry the weight of the world on our backs. And this is specifically what leads to burnout. You basically checkout, it’s like too much going on and too much responsibility and you’re not taking care of yourself. And this is also what leads to a lack of intimacy in our relationships.
So I’m asking you, no, no, I’m telling you, it’s time to prioritize yourself first. It’s just like if you’re on an airplane and you put your mask on first before you put the mask on of the person that’s sitting next to you. It’s the same concept here, self-care. And self-care is the foundation for, for you sex. I want to make that very clear. When I’m talking about for you sex, the basic, the foundation, the basic requirement is that you’re engaging in self-care and you’re taking care of yourself.
So what exactly is for you sex? I define for you sex as any act of sexual intimacy that leads to increased pleasure, communication, connection and a satisfaction. It does not have to have penetrative sex. It does have to involve pleasure for you. And I’m very clear about this, for you. And also it generally involves touch.
So let’s look at the benefits of for you sex. First of all there’s increased intimacy overall, so the connection, and that’s restored in the relationship and it leads to a new closeness. You also have better communication, partners spend more time. You’re talking to each other more. And because emotional energy is not being used for resentment, and anger, and avoidance, you actually get closer to each other and you do get this better communication.
And this leads to another concept. It’s a new focus on pleasure. For you, sex focuses on your pleasure, the journey requires that you look at everything in your life that gives you pleasure, not specifically just sexual pleasure but overall general pleasure. So walks in nature, taking a bath, holding babies, whatever it is that gives you joy and pleasure. You’re going to want to emphasize that because you’re going to want to figure out how general pleasure feels in your body before we translate that over into sexual pleasure.
So it requires that you get out of your mind and into your body and actually feel what general pleasure feels like. Another benefit of for you sex is just more sex overall. If you have better intimacy and communication, and a new focus on your pleasure then you’re going to actually increase the amount of sex overall that you have. And this is a good thing. And I have to say that sexual encounters or sexual intimacy acts usually double for my clients that I work with.
And then we have to focus on this concept of better body image. The secret is to love your body right now, exactly the way it is right now, not when it’s 10 pounds lighter, not the way it looked when you were 20 years old, but exactly now. And you’re going to have to do the mindset work to really appreciate all your body and what it does for you, and how strong it is, and how amazing it is.
Sometimes if one of my clients is a mother I’ll talk about, “Look at the amazing miracle of giving birth, of creating a life within yourself, of breastfeeding,” if you chose to breastfeed, of breastfeeding that child. Look at your body right now, what it does. We push our bodies all the time and it just responds and it does what we ask it to do. So this is something else to look at, whatever it needs to take for you to recognize how amazing your body is. And I work with my clients to do mirror work, to look at their body. And so often we focus on what we don’t like about our body.
Let’s start to look at what we do like about our body and then slowly do the work to love ourselves. I’m going to do a whole separate episode on body image and body confidence because I think this is such an important aspect of for you sex and just life in general.
And then another benefit of for you sex is my clients become more open to sexual exploration. I like to say, “Variety is the spice of life.” And in my course On Your Sexuality Now, we have a whole module that I call the sexual smorgasbord. And we look at a list. It’s like a two page list of different sexual activities that you can do so that it’s not specifically just penetrative sex. But we get the variety in there and we spice things up and we have a lot of fun doing it.
So it doesn’t necessarily have to be penis and vagina sex or penetrative sex. There is a lot more open things that you can do under sexual exploration. So it could be mutual masturbation, oral sex, cuddling, making out. There’s so many different things that we can get in here. And don’t get me started on the toys. I’ve been so good. This is episode 3. And I’ve just started to talk a little bit about toys, but I love toys. Like I said before, yes, I have worked in a sex toy store. So I definitely bring that in.
And actually in Own Your Sexuality Now, we just had a whole section on toys. And one of my friends, Jenny Heart who owns Heart’s Desires came and talked to us. And so maybe at some point in time I’ll have her on this podcast because I love the toys and she’s fabulous.
Alright, let’s see, getting back to for you for sex, more orgasms. More orgasms, how good is that? Who doesn’t want more orgasms? Now, I must say I focus on pleasure and satisfaction, and orgasms are optional. I love orgasms and I believe in them, and I think all women should have them. But that doesn’t have to be the be all and end all of a sexual intimacy experience.
But because I’m talking about orgasms, I just want to say this for a second. Please note that about 75-80% of women need clitoral stimulation in order to have an orgasm. There’s only about 15 to 20, 25% of women that can have an orgasm from penetrative sex alone. So women, get your toys out or do a manual stimulation, but stimulate or have your partner stimulate you in some way. Have some clitoral stimulation. And I’m going to talk more about anatomy as well. Yes, it’s all going to come out.
But I just want you to understand that between 75-85% of women will need clitoral stimulation in order to have an orgasm. And so if you’re having penetrative sex and you’re enjoying yourself but you’re not necessarily getting to an orgasm, it may be the fact that you need some direct stimulation to your vulva and to your clitoris. But my clients overall have increased orgasms. So like I was saying, bring your vibrator to bed. Bring your toys to bed with you, have fun with this.
And you know, women, say hi to your clitoris, please, hashtag, your clitoris is lonely, it needs some love and some attention. It is missing you.
And a wonderful benefit of for you sex is overall improved general wellbeing. You have more connection with your partner. You have more connection with yourself. You’re feeling better about your body. You’re enjoying pleasure. You’re doing sexual exploration. You’re having more orgasms. Overall you’re just kind of happier. You’re in a happier place. And so that’s another wonderful benefit of for you sex.
So the question becomes, so how do you create this for you sex life? And here we go. It begins and ends with self-care. So as I said before, self-care is the basis for you sex. And people wonder what self-care is. Very often when they hear the word ‘self-care’ they think of bonbons and bubble bath, sitting in a warm bubble bath eating chocolates and enjoying life. Yeah, sometimes that can be self-care. But a lot of times self-care can look like prioritizing the things that you have to accomplish that you’ve been putting off. Stop procrastinating and get something done that needs to get done.
Maybe it is stop buffering with food. And we talked a little bit about buffering before. Stop buffering with food or binge watching the Netflix or whatever and focus on what needs to be accomplished. Maybe it’s getting enough sleep and going to bed at 9 o’clock at night, even though you like to stay up till 10 and 11 and watch your favorite show or listen to your favorite podcast or something like that. Maybe you need to prioritize sleep.
Eating nutritious food, nurturing that intimacy with your partner, having those difficult conversations that we’ve been avoiding for a really long time, these are the things that are also part of self-care, setting boundaries. Yeah, setting boundaries, getting real with that, so these are all parts of self-care, and the things that need to be taken care of so that we can take care of ourselves.
So let’s start and look for a minute about the mind work that is required around self-care. And sometimes this is really the hardest part. You need to find the value within yourself in order to justify or prioritize to yourself why you should engage in self-care. So you might need to ask yourself some questions. Questions like why should I take care of myself? You might need to journal the answer to these questions. So why should I take care of myself? Am I valuable enough to put myself first?
Journal, think about these, write down your answers, and journal, and write, and think about these questions and the answers until you get to a place where you see that you are actually the most valuable person in your life specifically. If you’re not able to take care of yourself then everybody else is going to suffer at some point in time, especially if you burn out and you’re just at capacity and you can’t handle things anymore.
And you might want to think of some new thoughts to think, like I am the most valuable person in my life. I deserve pleasure. I deserve more sexual intimacy. These are things that are very, very important and something to think about. Alright, so that’s mind work.
Then you can look at creating a weekly or a monthly schedule. So when I’m talking about creating this schedule I’m talking about prioritizing yourself first. So you’re going to put your self-care time in first. So you may want to schedule your free time or come back to your me time, you might want to schedule that first. And then you can schedule in your work and sexual intimacy time. But you’re basically creating a schedule where you’re prioritizing yourself first. And then you’re also putting in your other commitments and the other fun activities that you want to do.
But maybe you’re a radiologist like I am and your schedule has nine different shifts that you have to do. So if that’s the case you might need to prioritize or put in your work schedule first just to get that out of the way. And then put in your me time and then put your sexual intimacy time in. But yes, scheduling can be fun, especially if you schedule yourself first. And then of course, don’t forget bonus sexual intimacy acts which are so much fun.
And I’ve mentioned this before in our Own Your Sexuality Now, we have a section on sexual smorgasbord. And we talk about all the different activities that you can do that are not specifically penetrative sex. And we get creative and we have a lot of fun.
So let’s look at another part of self-care which is sexual care. I am the midlife sex coach for women. So eventually I’m going to be talking about sexual care and self-care. So we are all sexual beings, or the majority of us are. And the best way to learn about your body and your sexual needs is through masturbation or self-pleasure. It’s what gets the system rubbed up. It primes the pump, as I like to say, and it generates more interest in sex.
If you’re engaging in sexual pleasure or self-pleasure then your body’s kind of in tune, it feels what that feels like. It’s not as much of a hump to get over the, oh right, sexual intimacy, I’m tired or I’m not sure. You’ve primed up the pump, your body is ready to go. So take the time to explore your body. Self-pleasure helps you practice dropping into your body and out of your mind.
Your body changes over time and what you may have previously enjoyed is not necessarily what you’re enjoying now. And you know what, that is okay. So things like nipple stimulation that you might have enjoyed 10 years ago, after breastfeeding three kids it may not be the top priority for you. Explore your body and find out what is, what is the top priority? What is the thing now that stimulates you, that turns you on, that makes you excited? And you get to figure it out for yourself.
And just know that your body can change over time. And what you found interesting and stimulating before is not necessarily what stimulates you now and that is okay. Our bodies are always changing and that’s okay. And like I mentioned when I was talking about the sexual smorgasbord, this is the time to open up your mind. This is the time to think about different forms of sexual intimacy like I mentioned, like cuddling, making out. And this is a time where you can add in and try out some different toys and different dildos and vibrators and get creative with all this.
So let’s look and see what’s going on here. Okay, so now we’re going to talk about something fun. And I call it discovering your sexual temperament and we’re going to take a closer look at a woman’s libido and desire. And what factors make you more interested in engaging in sex and which ones are going to make you less interested engaging in sex.
We’re going to talk about one of my favorite books which is called Come as You Are by Emily Nagoski. And we’ll put this in the show notes. But this is really a fun book. I love this book and I encourage everybody to get this book if you’re able to. And we might even be able to put a link, an Amazon link for this book. But in my Own Your Sexuality Now group we actually have a book club for Come as You Are that we’re reading right now. And we’re having a great time with this book. So I definitely recommend this book.
So in this book, Emily Nagoski talks about a dual control model of sexual response. And it helps you create your sexual personality or temperament.
And this dual control model was first developed in the late 1990s by Erick Janssen and John Bancroft of Kinsey Institute. And the basic concept is that there’s things that accelerate or make you more interested in sexual intimacy. And there’s things that detract or breaks that make you less interested in sexual intimacy. And they both are factors which influence your brain and your genitalia basically, so, this concept of a sexual accelerator and a sexual break.
So it’s important for you to figure out what your sexual accelerators are, what make you more interested in sex. Do you like to read erotica, does that do it? So the question is what turns on your mind? So is it reading erotica or possibly texting with your partner throughout the day? Or maybe you need to have the kids asleep in the house before you are thinking about it. Maybe you need a bath to relax. Maybe you like to shift into feeling sexy by putting on lingerie or something fun like that. Maybe you need to start first and have some additional vulva stimulation with a vibrator.
So these are things to know and understand about your body and this is what you’ve got to explore to see what makes you more interested in sex. And then there’s also the breaks, things that make you less interested in sex, things that turn off your mind. Things that make you more aware of the environment and ‘threats’ that are in the environment that are going to make you less interested in having sex. So is there a pile of dirty dishes in the sink or the house is a mess? Or maybe the kids are screaming and running around the house past their bedtime.
Maybe it’s the grabby husband that we talked about last week, or the grabby partner and that’s not respecting your boundaries. Maybe you’re just exhausted and you need some sleep. So know what are the things that sexually turn you off, and so those are your breaks. And it’s good to know what they are and to take care of them ahead of time.
And so another part of self-care basics is communicating your needs, so talk to your partner. So many people come to me and they’re kind of afraid to talk to bring up the issue of sexual intimacy and how they’d like to improve it. It’s hard for them to have a discussion about this. And I say that it’s time, it’s time for those hard conversations. But overall, partners usually love to learn what your needs are and to help you meet those needs.
But I always say ultimately your needs are your own responsibility, whether you’re in a relationship where you have a higher libido or a lower libido, your needs are your responsibility and it’s not specifically what your partner has to meet. They don’t have to necessarily meet your needs, but generally they want to make you happy and so they help you out. But I do want to make sure people understand that you are responsible for meeting your own needs. But you do have the right to express your needs.
And usually once the partner understands what these needs are, that usually leads to more intimacy and more sexual intimacy specifically. And you’d be surprised, they catch on really quickly and they’re usually excited to help out.
I have a lot of clients and their partners are saying, “What did Dr. Sonia say to do this week? What’s your homework this week? What did you guys talk about this week when you coached together?” And then they’re saying, “When will you seek Dr. Sonia again? How’s the homework this week? Do we need to do more homework?” So they really get inspired and they really enjoy the fact that you’re actually coaching with me.
Alright, so let’s look at our friend Helen, we met Helen last week. She’s my hypothetical client. And let’s see what she’s doing after working with me for about 12 weeks. So now Helen’s more engaged with her partner, she’s communicating and that’s definitely improved. She’s enjoying more sexual intimacy and she’s getting more for you sex. And she has four sessions a month, which was ultimately what she came to me for.
But they’re sessions that are geared around her sexual intimacy, her pleasure. And she’s having fun with it. She’s rediscovered her body and she enjoys sexual intimacy. And she’s actually even getting creative. So basically Helen has shifted to do list sex to a place where it’s now been replaced with for you sex. And that is my goal for you, all of you diamonds. So what about you, what about the sexy midlife woman?
I’m going to leave you with a few questions. So what does self-care look like for you? How can you take care of yourself? What mind work do you need to do in order to prioritize yourself and put your needs first? What are your sexual accelerators? And what are your sexual breaks? How can you get creative with your sex life? And how can you express your needs and have that communication with your partner? These are all things to think about.
Okay diamonds, that’s all for this week. Feel free to visit me any time at my website www.soniawrightmd.com.
And to celebrate the launch of The Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast I’m going to be giving away a $50 Amazon gift card to five lucky listeners who subscribe, rate and review the show on Apple Podcast. It doesn’t have to be a five star review, although I would really love it if it were a five star review. But more importantly, I want your honest feedback so I can create an amazing show that provides tons of value.
Visit www.soniawrightmd.com/podcastlaunch to learn more about the contest and how you can enter. I’ll be announcing the winners on the show in an upcoming episode. Okay, that’s all for now, see you next time diamonds.
Female Announcer: Thanks for listening to this week’s episode of The Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast. If you enjoy Dr. Sonia’s fun and caring approach to sexual intimacy, head to soniawrightmd.com to learn more.