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How to Have Bad Sex

(10 Ways to Screw Up Your Sex Life)


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated August 13, 2009 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

It may be impossible to prove a negative, but I've always found it easier to talk about how to have bad sex than how to have good sex. A while back I compiled this list, and the first item on the list is all about sexual normativity. If you want to have bad sex start by comparing yourself to others. Most of us are looking for a quick fix to our sexual dilemmas. We want a pill, a DVD, or a series of complex finger movements that will magically make us less anxious and more confident about exposing our true sexual selves. Of course no such magic pill exists. In the end the quality of the consensual sex we have is mostly in our own hands (literally and/or figuratively). There may not be one way to have good sex, but I do believe there are a few sure fire ways to not get what you want sexually, and to increase the chances of having bad sex. Here are my top ten ways to have bad sex.

Compare Yourself to Others:

Sexuality may be the most subjective aspect of human experience. Forget the magazine quizzes and six step sex books, there is simply no meaningful way to compare yourself to a stranger when it comes to your sexuality. Plus, everyone lies about sex anyway. Comparing yourself to others will give you nothing but grief. If you want to do something useful for your sex life, focus on yourself and anyone you're having sex with, and don't turn away. Read more about the pitfalls of sexual comparisons 1

Ignore Your Body:

The idea of a perfect body is a fiction. None of us have perfect bodies. But we're inundated with pieced together visions of beauty that we all compare ourselves to an unattainable ideal. In response many of us turn away from our bodies, pretend they, we, aren't there. But whatever your body is like, you sexuality is part of it, and you ignore your body at the expense of genuine sexual pleasure and empowerment. It's not easy, but working with the body you've got is one crucial part of improving your sex life. Read more about sexuality and body image

Only Listen to the Experts:

If you really want to have bad sex do everything sex experts tell you to do. It's not that people with expertise don't have something to offer (I hope), but in practice sexuality is so personal and unique that the final expert must be you and/or the people you're having sex with. Sexual growth comes from paying attention to your own experience, your own feelings, and your own body first. Once you can do that then it's worth listening to what others have to say and deciding what of their advice rings true for you. Read more about becoming your own sex expert

Stop Paying Attention:

Sexuality is as much about awareness as it is about action. From birth to death, our bodies and minds never stop changing, growing, and developing. This means our sexuality never stops changing either. When you stop paying attention to your most personal sexual feelings and experiences, you shut yourself off from that change, and from aspects of your sexual self. The goal is to become less sexually ignorant as we age, not more. Read more about increasing your own sexual awareness.

Grow Up, Get Serious:

Sex is the closest thing adults have to the kind of play we engaged in when we were kids. While sex can be about all sorts of grown up things (having kids, making love, transcending duality, etc) it can 2

also just be a rollicking good time. If you make sex just one more thing that's serious and routine, and only done in "reasonable" ways, you lose much of the power and magic of sex in our lives. Read more about sexual role play.

Believe That Ignorance Is Bliss:

We all live with a certain level of sexual ignorance. This ignorance keeps us at risk of many things; risk of bad sex, risk of STDs, risk of too many regretful moments. If you want to maintain that level of risk, just keep up your level of ignorance. If you want to turn the tide then get out there and learn something about sex that's relevant to your own life from someone who is qualified to teach you. Read more about ending personal sexual ignorance.

Confuse Sex Entertainment With Sex Education:

Most of the books and magazine articles you read about sex are written by people with two qualifications; they look hip and they live in New York. Sex entertainment (movies, adult workshops, sex toy stores) can be a fun way to explore your options. But it isn't the same thing as sex education or sex therapy. If you're feeling good about your sex life but want more, sex entertainment may offer a quick boost. But if you're feeling genuinely stuck and distressed about your sexuality or your sex life, be sure to turn to a qualified sex educator, counselor, or therapist. Read more about finding good sexual help.

Keep a Closed Mind:

Making the arbitrary decision that however you're having sex right now is the only way to have sex is another guaranteed route to sexual disappointment. Regardless of political and religious beliefs, there are countless ways to express and experience your sexuality. You don't need to throw out your principles or blur your boundaries to have better sex. You just need to be creative, which is kind of the opposite of being narrow-minded. Read more ideas on getting creative with sex.

Act Like Sex Is Something Special:

Our sexuality is linked to all aspects of our lives; our health, our families, our jobs and retirement, everything. In this way, sex isn't really anything special; it's every day and everywhere. It follows that if you want to change your sex life in a substantial way you have to change other aspects of your life as well. But when you segregate sex from the rest of your life, whether that means putting it on a pedestal or in an old shoe box, you reduce your chances of change, and cut off awareness that can help you grow sexually. Read more about integrating your sexual self.

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Let Fear Be Your Guide

Sex is scary. Partly because we know so little, and partly because sex demands we give up control and expose ourselves. As a result many of us make a preemptive retreat. We don't talk about our desires, we don't tell our partners what we really want to do, or even what we fantasize about doing but would never want to do in real life. We keep ourselves hidden and collude with partners by not pushing them too much. Oftentimes fear is a reasonable response. But if you're in a safe relationship where there is trust, the more you let fear be your guide, the less you'll get out of the sexual relationship. Read more about revealing your sexual self.

Sexual Exploration

Ideas on Sexual Discovery and Difference


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated September 07, 2010 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Sexual exploration could be used to describe most of what we do throughout our lives when we talk about, think about, and have sex. For many of us sex and sexuality are a bit of a mystery, and you can think of the process of sexual discovery and growth as one of exploration. As a sex educator I get all sorts of questions and requests, and I think about most of them as questions about sexual exploration. How and where you start any sexual exploration can depend on a lot of things. One way to point yourself in a fruitful direction is to think about why you're interested in learning more about sex. What is it you're hoping to find? Here are a few of the most common reasons people give when they ask me for help around sexual exploration:

want to learn more about sexual bodies looking for tips on exploring sexual pleasure hoping to understand sexual diseases and dysfunctions come up with ideas on spicing up long-term relationships find support in expressing what feels right with a new partner

Whether youre looking to learn more on your own or with a partner, and whether youre in a relationship or not, taking the first step in a new sexual direction can be daunting for a few reasons. Few of us are raised with positive messages about sexual pleasure. Not many of us have early access to accurate, honest, and comprehensive sex education. And frankly, most people's lives aren't set up to value and support sexual exploration for its own sake. Here is some context that may be helpful as you move through whatever sort of sexual exploration youre considering. 5

Different Kinds of Sex Information


The best sex information is as complicated as we are, but most of it can be divided into one of a few types of information:

About sexual anatomy and response1: the parts of our body that are involved in sexuality and what happens to them when we're being sexual About sexual thoughts: from anxieties2 to fantasies3 to trauma4, our sexual thoughts have a huge impact on our sexuality About sexual feelings: the slipperiest part of any equation is our emotional and intuitive responses to sexuality. While not always logical or predictable, these are our responses. We need to understand and, in some way, honor them (which isnt the same as always letting them guide our decisionmaking) About sexual activities5: all those things we do that we call sex

Were All Sexually Different


The problem with generalizing sexuality (which happens on this site, and pretty much everywhere else) is that were all different. Take our bodies for example. I might talk about a typical sexual response, or how a body part like the nipples might respond. In reality, everyones body is different. True, most of us have two eyes, two ears, a nose, etc. But some of us don't, and some of us have two eyes, but can only see out of one of them. Some of us have big noses, and some have little noses. Some of us have taken the body we were born with and changed it, either intentionally or unintentionally. But when someone with specific knowledge (like a sexual health educator) starts describing our sexual bodies, most of us begin to compare ourselves to what we are being told. This is a terrible mistake. The amazing thing about sex and people is that were all unique. Our sexual feelings, interests, desires, and body parts are all different, which is one of the things that makes sexual exploration never ending, and sexual discovery always interesting.

Avoid Sexual Comparisons


In North America, we put a premium on looking a certain way, and feeling like our bodies fit a certain image. This may be the worst waste of time and energy in our society (except for computer solitaire, which is probably a worse waste of time). Information on http://sexuality.about.com/ is meant only as a guide. You should read this and then compare it to how you feel. If it does not apply, then ignore it. If you can use some of the information, that is great. Try to avoid using this information to make yourself feel bad because what your body is like does not match the pictures on this site.

Become Your Own Sex Expert


It is an old, but true, clich that you have the ability to know more about your sexuality than anyone else. You can be your own best expert. As you seek out information, help and support for expanding your sexuality, make sure you always check in with yourself. You may not always know "best" but your experience is true, and exploration should always be on your own terms. Thousands of people call themselves sex experts and are waiting to tell you the right way to have sex, to be sexy, even to think about sex. There may be something to learn from what some of these people say, but be wary of the experts who claim to have answers for you. Sexual exploration is a lifelong process, and finding answers that have meaning for you can only happen when you are fully engaged in asking the questions and seeking the answers. There are few quick solutions and short cuts, and its not the kind of club where you can use someone elses membership to get inside.

Sexuality and Body Image


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated April 12, 2011 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Body image, like sexuality, is one of those very broad terms that most of us use without taking time to question what we mean when we say it. Most social and scientific research on body image focuses on how we think and feel about the shape and weight of our bodies, but body image can incorporate much more than that, including:

The value we put on physical appearance (our own and other peoples) How we experience our bodies (what happens when we look in the mirror, touch ourselves, smell ourselves, etc...) How we imagine our body looks How we imagine other people look at our bodies

And as with sexuality, body image is completely entwined with social ideals and norms of beauty that are always tied to a particular time and a particular place. There is no objective "ideal" body shape, size, or look. There is no "right" way a body should move or smell. Body image is inseparable from a particular society's understanding of race, gender, and class, to mention just a few social constructs that intersect with body image. While arguably the impact of body image is experienced by most of us in deeply personal ways, it's something that is social and socially constructed. None of us are born hating our bodies, it's something we learn. Body image and sexuality are often thrown together in the media, but what do we know about the relationship between sexuality and body image?

Body Image Can Impact Sexuality


When we think about body image and sexuality, we tend to think about it as a fairly simple relationship: If you grow up with positive messages about your body, you'll be more comfortable with it. 8

You'll also likely be more comfortable having sex, and therefore have better sex. If you feel bad about your body, the opposite will be true. But it isn't that simple. Our body image and our sexuality can impact each other in unexpected ways. Consider a study that examined the connection between body image and risky sexual practices which found a notable gender difference (which they limited to just two options, male and female). The study found that while men with more positive body image were more likely to engage in risky sexual behaviors, women with more positive body image were less likely to engage in risky sexual behaviors. So a positive body image can have different effects on different people, and the relationship between sexuality and body image is not so straightforward.

Sexuality Can Impact Body Image


Since the 1960s, feminist therapists and sex educators have been working with women to help them have more positive sexual experiences, specifically helping them learn how to sexually satisfy themselves and teach their partners how to sexually satisfy them. One of the things this work, and the many books it has spawned, reveals is the way that sexual exploration and sexual behavior can have a positive impact on body image.

Positive body image and sexual satisfaction do not always come together
Many people assume that those with positive body image reap the rewards in the bedroom. But the connection between the two is more complicated. A study of women age 35 to 55, for example, showed that poor body image was related to a reduction in sexual desire and sexual activity. But the same study found that when the women were having sex, their satisfaction was very high. A substantial 72 percent of women in the study reported being physically and emotionally satisfied in their sexual relationship, and 71 percent reported general sexual satisfaction. 9

Body image is general--sexual satisfaction is specific


One possible explanation for the above finding is that body image doesn't account for the unique and personal experience of having sex. Some people may be shy and self-conscious about their bodies when they are out in the world, but they may be uninhibited and comfortable while having sex with a partner they trust. Thus, a woman who is bombarded with messages that her aging body is no longer beautiful may feel the weight of that through a decrease in how "sexy" she feels or how often she wants sex. But when she's having sex, the satisfaction may be unrelated to her body image. Sources: 1. Koch, P., Mansfield, P., Thurau, D., Carey, M. "Feeling Frumpy": The Relationships Between Body Image and Sexual Response Changes in Midlife Women, Journal of Sex Research, Vol 42(3), Aug 2005. 2. Gillen, M., Lefkowitz, E., Shearer, C. Does Body Image Play a Role in Risky Sexual Behavior and Attitudes? Journal of Youth and Adolescence, February, 2006. 3. Kliger, L. & Nedelman, D. Still Sexy After All These Years? : The 9 Unspoken Truths About Women's Desire Beyond 50, Perigee, 2006. 4. Tiggemann, M. Body image across the adult life span: stability and change, Body Image, 1(1), January 2004

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Sex Tips for the Rest of Us: Define Your Sexual Terms

Improving sexual communication


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated January 08, 2009 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

We all rely on communication short cuts at times. We use them to make conversations go faster or smoother or just because it doesn't feel necessary to fill in all the blanks that have been filled in a thousand times before. To an outsider these can sound like bizarre coded conversations, like "I'll meet you at the place, by the thing, later today," or "Remember that thing you did before? Do it again, but harder!" We also use this kind of vagueness at times when we don't want to have to spell it out, either because we're embarrassed or we feel that spelling it out would be too challenging or argumentative. The problem with this is that communication short cuts can lead to significant miscommunication. Vagueness, particularly around a topic like sex, can lead directly to confusion. And we have to remember that if we don't clearly ask for what we want, we reduce the chances that we'll ever get it. This sex tip is one part of a larger project of writing your own sexual story1, it's a good first step which involves defining your own sexual terms. It is not meant to produce a final answer on what sex means for you today and in the future. Rather it offers a snapshot of how you're thinking and feeling in a given moment. It's something you can share with a partner, or just keep for yourself. Take some time over the next week or two to answer some of these questions for yourself. If it's easy to do, you might want to write it down. If not you can just think about the questions and how you would answer them today. These aren't the only questions to ask, they may not even be the best questions for you to ask yourself, but they're a good start. 11

When I say I want to have sex, I mean I want to(try to list at least three things) Sex for me is(try to list at least five things) When I think about sex, the first thing I think about is When I think about sex, the last thing I think about is Words I am comfortable using about my own body Words I'm comfortable using about other people's bodies Words I like others to use about my body To me great sex is(try to list at least three things) To me bad sex is(try to list at least three things)

As always, have fun!

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Sex Tips for the Rest of Us: Integrating your sexual self

Deepen sexual expression


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated January 19, 2009 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Many of us tend to compartmentalize our sexual selves. We not only remove sex from the rest of our identity (so sex becomes merely a thing we do, not all the things we are) but we also draw artificial boundaries around our sexual desires. We deny long held sexual fantasies, we act in certain ways because it is what we think is expected of us based on our gender, or our age. But sexuality is who we are, and no matter how hard we try to deny sexual aspects of ourselves we might consider embarrassing or unseemly, sexuality is one of the life forces that touches all aspects of who we are; our mind, our body and our spirit. Take some time over this week and next and pay attention to the ways that your sexual mind, sexual body, and sexual spirit, act in harmony, and how tapping into those connections can open up new sexual possibilities. Its not as flakey as it sounds! Maybe youll notice the way that you feel walking down the street on a good day, when youre happy in your body and feeling sexy. Pay attention to the way people interact with you when youre feeling this way. Maybe youll experiment with breathing techniques when youre masturbating and notice how the moment just before you orgasm can feel spiritual sometimes, and just plain dirty other times. Maybe you will try to vocalize more when youre having sex with a partner, whether that means actually talking and describing what you are feeling, or allowing your body to make uncensored sounds that can also express what is going on for you in the moment. 13

Maybe youll pay more attention to the subtle ways that sex comes up in family discussions. Does it get joked about? Is it never spoken about? Are there family members youve never talked to about sex? Maybe youll take a chance and talk to them this year about something that feels comfortable to bring up. Maybe you will pay more attention to the way people look at you when youre outside in public, and the way you do, or dont, look back at them. A casual glance can be a sexual encounter. Maybe youll pay extra attention to how your body feels when youre listening to your favorite music, and notice that the simple act of listening to a song can be a sexual experience. There is no one way to do this, but turning your attention inward, and giving yourself permission to think about anything (or everything) as sexual, can open your mind up to the connections that are ever present in us between our physical, psychological, and spiritual experience of sexuality.

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Sexual Fantasy & Sexual Role Play


Information about sexual fantasy, and tips on sexual fantasy role play, including ways to get comfortable engaging in sexual role play, how to develop different characters, the importance of setting the scene, and books and videos that are good for exploring sexual role play fantasy. All About Sexual Fantasy Information about the origins of sexual fantasies, the most common sexual fantasies, how healthy it is to have sexual fantasies, and ideas for more sexual fantasies. Sexual Fantasy Ideas Tips on developing sexual fantasy ideas and coming up with fantasy scenarios that work for you. Top Sexual Fantasies While every list of top sexual fantasies differs slightly there are less than ten themes that consistently appear on surveys of top sexual fantasies. How common are sexual fantasies? Research indicates that roughly 95% of men and women engage in sexual fantasy in one situation or another. Learn more about gender and age differences in the frequency of sexual fantasizing. What are sexual fantasies? Explains sexual fantasies, how sexual fantasy is related to sexual health, and the different roles sexual fantasy can play in our sex lives. Exploring Taboo Fantasy Through Masturbation Using masturbation to explore taboo sexual role play fantasies.

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How to Explore Fantasy Sexual Role Play Tips on Sexual Role Play Scenarios Information and ideas on sexual fantasy role play, creating scenarios, developing characters, finding costumes and props, and setting ground rules for safe and fun sexual fantasy role play. Sexual Role Play Tip Choosing a Fantasy Role that Feels Right. Ideas on how to choose a sexual role for sexual fantasy role play that feels right and will work. With suggestions on where to get ideas for different sexual roles for sexual fantasy role play. Sexual Role Play Tip Setting Your Fantasy Sexual Role Play Scenarios Ideas on how to elaborate your fantasy sexual role play scarios by filling in the details of your sexual fantasy scenario. Sexual Role Play Tip Choosing costumes and props for fantasy sexual role play Ideas on how to elaborate your fantasy sexual role play scenario with costumes and props. Sexual Role Play Tip Exploring the Psyche of Your Sexual Role Play Character Ideas on how to elaborate your fantasy sexual role play scenario by understanding the motivation and feelings of your character. Sexual Role Play Tip Setting Ground Rules for Fantasy Sexual Role Play Ideas on setting ground rules and boundaries for fantasy sexual role playing. Sexual Role Play Tip Use Masturbation to Explore Fantasy Sexual Role Play Ideas on using masturbation to explore fantasy sexual role playing.

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Sexual Exploration

Ideas on Sexual Discovery and Difference


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated September 07, 2010 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Sexual exploration could be used to describe most of what we do throughout our lives when we talk about, think about, and have sex. For many of us sex and sexuality are a bit of a mystery, and you can think of the process of sexual discovery and growth as one of exploration. As a sex educator I get all sorts of questions and requests, and I think about most of them as questions about sexual exploration. How and where you start any sexual exploration can depend on a lot of things. One way to point yourself in a fruitful direction is to think about why you're interested in learning more about sex. What is it you're hoping to find? Here are a few of the most common reasons people give when they ask me for help around sexual exploration:

want to learn more about sexual bodies looking for tips on exploring sexual pleasure hoping to understand sexual diseases and dysfunctions come up with ideas on spicing up long-term relationships find support in expressing what feels right with a new partner

Whether youre looking to learn more on your own or with a partner, and whether your in a relationship or not, taking the first step in a new sexual direction can be daunting for a few reasons. Few of us are raised with positive messages about sexual pleasure. Not many of us have early access to accurate, honest, and comprehensive sex education. And frankly, most people's lives aren't set up to value and support sexual exploration for it's own sake. Here is some context that may be helpful as you move through whatever sort of sexual exploration youre considering. 17

Different Kinds of Sex Information


The best sex information is as complicated as we are, but most of it can be divided into one of a few types of information:

About sexual anatomy and response1: the parts of our body that are involved in sexuality and what happens to them when we're being sexual About sexual thoughts: from anxieties2 to fantasies3 to trauma4, our sexual thoughts have a huge impact on our sexuality About sexual feelings: the slipperiest part of any equation is our emotional and intuitive responses to sexuality. While not always logical or predictable, these are our responses. We need to understand and, in some way, honor them (which isnt the same as always letting them guide our decisionmaking) About sexual activities5: all those things we do that we call sex

Were All Sexually Different


The problem with generalizing sexuality (which happens on this site, and pretty much everywhere else) is that were all different. Take our bodies for example. I might talk about a typical sexual response, or how a body part like the nipples might respond. In reality, everyones body is different. True, most of us have two eyes, two ears, a nose, etc. But some of us don't, and some of us have two eyes, but can only see out of one of them. Some of us have big noses, and some have little noses. Some of us have taken the body we were born with and changed it, either intentionally or unintentionally. But when someone with specific knowledge (like a sexual health educator) starts describing our sexual bodies, most of us begin to compare ourselves to what we are being told. This is a terrible mistake. The amazing thing about sex and people is that were all unique. Our sexual feelings, interests, desires, and body parts are all different, which is one of the things that makes sexual exploration never ending, and sexual discovery always interesting.

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Avoid Sexual Comparisons


In North America, we put a premium on looking a certain way, and feeling like our bodies fit a certain image. This may be the worst waste of time and energy in our society (except for computer solitaire, which is probably a worse waste of time). Information on sexuality.about.com is meant only as a guide. You should read this and then compare it to how you feel. If it does not apply, then ignore it. If you can use some of the information, that is great. Try to avoid using this information to make yourself feel bad because what your body is like does not match the pictures on this site.

Become Your Own Sex Expert


It is an old, but true, clich that you have the ability to know more about your sexuality than anyone else. You can be your own best expert. As you seek out information, help and support for expanding your sexuality, make sure you always check in with yourself. You may not always know "best" but your experience is true, and exploration should always be on your own terms. Thousands of people call themselves sex experts and are waiting to tell you the right way to have sex, to be sexy, even to think about sex. There may be something to learn from what some of these people say, but be wary of the experts who claim to have answers for you. Sexual exploration is a lifelong process, and finding answers that have meaning for you can only happen when you are fully engaged in asking the questions and seeking the answers. There are few quick solutions and short cuts, and its not the kind of club where you can use someone elses membership to get inside.

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Sex Education & Seeking Sexual Help


Information on sex education and different ways to find help for sexual concerns, sexual problems, and sexual dysfunction. Places to find sex advice, sex therapy, sex education, and sex information for adults wanting to expand their sexual options and understanding. Sexuality Helping Professions What's the difference between a sex therapist and sex educator? How about a sex researcher and sexologist? This article describes different kinds of sex professionals and how their work is defined. Sex Educator Continuing Education A discussion of the difficulty in staying open to learning as a sex educator, and the importance of continuing education both personally and professionally. How Do I Find a Sexual Health Clinic? Find a sexual health clinic in your area. Sex Workshops Many sex stores and private groups run sex workshops for adults that focus on learning specific sexual skills or practices (e.g. oral sex, BDSM, tantra). Find out if there is a location in your town offering sex workshops. What Is Good Sex Education? Lists the essential elements of any good sex education material or program. Bad Education Ive been disappointed with my experience going to sex workshops at local sex shops. How can I tell if a sex workshop is going to be good? How to find a sex positive doctor Tips from Ducky Doolittle on how to find a sex positive physician. 20

American Association of Sexuality Educators Counselors Therapists An online referral directory for sex therapists and educators who are certified by the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists. Bisexuality-Aware Professionals Directory The Bisexuality-Aware Professionals Directory is a listing of professionals who are sensitive to the unique needs of bisexual clientele. Professionals listed include psychologists, psychotherapists, physicians, lawyers, financial advisors, massage therapists, social workers, chiropractors, lecturers, organizers, and others. Erectile Dysfunction Help Where to turn for help with erectile dysfunction questions and concerns. Erectile Dysfunction Forums How to find erectile dysfunction forums, or any online spaces to talk with others who have experienced or are experiencing erectile dysfunction.

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Sex Tips for the Rest of Us


Short and sweet sex tips for exploring solo or partner sexual activities, feelings, and communication. Easy to follow challenges that will stretch your sexual creativity. Desert Island Sex Picks Imagine you could only engage in one sexual behavior for the rest of your life. What would it be? This sex tip encourages you to stop taking the kinds of sex you have for granted and think more introspectively about the role of sex in your sex life. Stop and Go Sex Play This sex tip is for two people and offers a way to playfully communicate about what you like and dont like in sexual touch and activities. Broken Sex Telephone This tip helps you communicate what you want to a partner and do a better job of hearing them when they want to talk about sex. Sharing Sexy Pictures and Sounds For two or more people, this scavenger hunt sex tip is about finding and sharing sounds and images that you find arousing. Defining Sexual Intimacy On your own, this sex tip guides you through the process of defining sexual intimacy. It also suggests ways to share your definition with a partner. Put on a One-Person Show Here's a way to teach your partner the ins and outs of your sexual response while exploring (or perhaps discovering) the exhibitionist within.

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Learn About Your Sexual Anatomy Take a personal tour of your sexual anatomy and learn how to draw a map of your own sexual body. Sexualize Something New Follow this tip to more fully explore and appreciate your partner's body. Find new erogenous zones for both of you to enjoy. Define Your Sexual Terms A solo sex tip (but you can share if you want) that helps you define your sexual terms as a way of exploring your boundaries. Writing Your Sexual History A step-by-step guide to writing your own sexual history in order to better understand and communicate about your sexuality and sex life. Mess with your Sex Life Part 1 This sex tip could be done alone or with a partner. It's great for getting out of a sexual rut or boring routine. Mess with your Sex Life Part 2 You know how when you're doing a big cleaning job there's a point where everything seems messier. And you have to remind yourself that you're on the way to a new kind of order. That's what this sex tip is like. But it's about sex, not cleaning. Exploring Fantasy Through Sexual Role Play Sex tips and tools to experiment with bringing sexual fantasies to life through erotic role play with a partner. She Shoots... This sex tip works alone or with a partner, and encourages a focus off of scoring on onto the act of shooting (metaphorically speaking). Stop Having Sex in the Dark Alone or with a partner, one way to change up your sex life it to play with lighting for different sexual scenarios and moods.

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Breathing and Sex Conscious breathing techniques can be used to increase awareness and understanding of our sexual thoughts, feelings, and physical responses. Simple tips on using conscious breathing for sexual exploration. Heat it up, Cool it down This classic sex tip is all about playing with temperature, hot and cold. Ask One Sex Question This Week This tip suggests that the route to better sex may start with better questions. Everyday Sex Talk A sex tip for couples with some very specific homework about words and actions. Dirty Talk Tip Tips on relatively embarrassment-free ways to introduce the language and love and lust into your sex play. Integrating Your Sexual Self A solo sex tip that suggests looking inward for sexual discovery. Reveal Something About Yourself A sex tip that asks you to take chances with yourself and your partner by revealing sexual interests and desires that you feel some embarrassment about. Switch It Up...With Yourself A sex tip for one, whether your in a relationship or not. This tip is all about taking the time to explore your own body and turning masturbation into self-love. Plan Ahead For the Holidays How to stay sexual over the holidays and how sex can help ground you at the most stressful times.

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Holiday Sexual Wishes Instead of (or in addition to) all the holiday gifting, give the gift of desire, and share something you really want with your partner. Sexy Halloween Ideas Halloween may be the sexiest holiday of the year. For adults, dressing up, eating candy, getting scared, and getting down is possibly what its all about. Here are some tips on making the most of a sexy Halloween. Why (and How Much) Sex Matters to You This sex tip encourages you to think through why and how much sex matters to you, and how that may influence your current sex life.

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Sex Tips for the Rest of Us: Integrating your sexual self

Deepen sexual expression


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated January 19, 2009 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Many of us tend to compartmentalize our sexual selves. We not only remove sex from the rest of our identity (so sex becomes merely a thing we do, not all the things we are) but we also draw artificial boundaries around our sexual desires. We deny long held sexual fantasies, we act in certain ways because it is what we think is expected of us based on our gender, or our age. But sexuality is who we are, and no matter how hard we try to deny sexual aspects of ourselves we might consider embarrassing or unseemly, sexuality is one of the life forces that touches all aspects of who we are; our mind, our body and our spirit. Take some time over this week and next and pay attention to the ways that your sexual mind, sexual body, and sexual spirit, act in harmony, and how tapping into those connections can open up new sexual possibilities. Its not as flakey as it sounds! Maybe youll notice the way that you feel walking down the street on a good day, when youre happy in your body and feeling sexy. Pay attention to the way people interact with you when youre feeling this way. Maybe youll experiment with breathing techniques when youre masturbating and notice how the moment just before you orgasm can feel spiritual sometimes, and just plain dirty other times. Maybe you will try to vocalize more when youre having sex with a partner, whether that means actually talking and describing what you are feeling, or allowing your body to make uncensored sounds that can also express what is going on for you in the moment.

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Maybe youll pay more attention to the subtle ways that sex comes up in family discussions. Does it get joked about? Is it never spoken about? Are there family members youve never talked to about sex? Maybe youll take a chance and talk to them this year about something that feels comfortable to bring up. Maybe you will pay more attention to the way people look at you when youre outside in public, and the way you do, or dont, look back at them. A casual glance can be a sexual encounter, and . Maybe youll pay extra attention to how your body feels when youre listening to your favorite music, and notice that the simple act of listening to a song can be a sexual experience. There is no one way to do this, but turning your attention inward, and giving yourself permission to think about anything (or everything) as sexual, can open your mind up to the connections that are ever present in us between our physical, psychological, and spiritual experience of sexuality.

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Reveal Something About Yourself

Exploring Hidden Sexual Desires


By Cory Silverberg, About.com Guide
Updated June 28, 2011 About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by the Medical Review Board

Despite claims that we live in a time of unprecedented sexual openness and communication most of us still hold secret sexual desires, desires we may not even admit to ourselves, and with them some sexual shame1. One way to begin dealing with shame2 is to reveal our secret desires at least to ourselves. Over the next week take time to pay attention to where you mind wanders when you fantasize about sex. Try to do this at least twice, and each time try to spend at least five minutes thinking about it. If thinking about where your mind goes feels painful, don't force it. But just kind of take note of what it is that you think about, or what you feel in your body when you begin to have a sexual fantasy. Remember that sexual fantasies3 are not the same thing as sexual actions. Thinking and doing are two different things. Although often it can feel like just thinking about something is bad, even if we never share our thoughts or desires with anyone or act on them. Have fun!

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