The Term ‘Sex Positive’ is becoming pretty popular, especially on social media - but what does it mean?
It’s actually pretty simple, and you’ll probably find you are already practicing sex positivity!
What is ‘Sex Positivity’?
The term ‘sex-positive’ can be interpreted in different ways. For most, it involves having positive attitudes about sex and feeling comfortable with one’s own sexual identity and with the sexual behaviours of others.
It’s much easier to explain what sex positivity is and isn’t, so let’s get down to it!
Sex Positivity is…
A positive, judgement-free attitude towards all things sex. A sex-positive person constantly works on destigmatising and changing any areas of their sexuality that society has taught them for so many years to shame.
It’s the idea and awareness that sex isn’t just for procreation but for our pleasure and our health! You encourage healthy, consensual conversations surrounding sex and sexual health without shame and are pro-inclusive sex education.
A sex-positive person doesn’t demonise sex in any way or attempt to make anyone feel guilty for their interests, kinks, desires etc.
Sex Positivity isn’t…
Many people think that ‘being sex positive’ means you are kinky AF or hyper-sexual (although you can be that, too) - but you can also have never had or wanted sex and still be sex-positive!
Being sex-positive doesn’t mean you push sex on everyone. It is respecting and understanding every body's preferences, whether that’s abstaining, joining the kink scene, feeling like you never want sex or swinging!
Tips on being Sex Positive
Being sex-positive is a journey and there are little changes you can make that won’t really impact your life!
Follow Sex Posi Accounts
There is a lot of fluff on social media, but you can also find some gems and Instagram accounts are a great way to get clued up on sex positivity without spending hours researching!
Here are some of my favourites:
- @cliterallythebest (obviously 🤩)
Stop/call out the ‘Slut-Shaming’
I see this constantly still, and more often than not, by cis women.
Slut-shaming is used to describe criticising women for behaviour or clothing that is perceived as promiscuous. What exactly does dragging others down about their choices do for you? Nothing, so stop it and call out those who do it too. Let’s cheer each other on like we do with cis men!
Talk candidly with others
Talking openly about sex with your friends or loved ones can help so much. Normalising that conversation around something pretty much all of us do goes against everything we’ve been taught about shame and taboo.
Due to the awful sex education that was previously taught in schools, we mostly learn through trial and error or through hearing from others. Speaking honestly with others about our own experiences can also help us understand what is ‘normal’ and what is something to seek help with. For example, you may have experienced non-consensual sex but not realised it because the media always portrays it as being violent. Similarly, you may have STI symptoms even though you thought you only had a UTI.
Learn about other peoples experiences
This is my favourite thing to do. You don’t need to have tried everything to be sex-positive! Learn, respectfully, about other people's preferences (especially if they are very different from yours) and keep aware that not everyone is into the same things. Because that’s what makes sex amazing!
Learning properly about other peoples experiences, kinks and fetishes also helps us be less judgemental, open to exploring our own interests and ultimately shake off that shame that's been so ingrained in us from an early age - it’s never productive to yuck someone’s yum!
Be open about your STI status
An STI is any kind of bacterial or viral infection that can be passed on through unprotected fun.
Contracting an STI isn’t just something that happens to those who have multiple partners (which is more than fine), it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve had sex or who it’s with; anyone can get an STI - even from not having sex at all!
Keep in tune with your body and get those regular STI tests as for many of them, the most common symptom is no symptom at all!
ALWAYS disclose your status, and if someone chooses to react badly to you being honest for their benefit, then they are probably not someone you want to be getting intimate with.
Make consent the priority
Consent is not talked about enough, in both sexual and non-sexual situations. Make sure that consent is a priority in your life and that the people in your life are aware of it and do the same.
If you have kids, teach them consent from an early age, this certainly doesn’t mean jumping straight to sexual consent, but there are few ways you can introduce this into their day-to-day life. You can read more about teaching kids consent here.
Why Is Being ‘Sex Positive’ Important?
Talking openly about sex and our sexual health in a judgement-free way can help us form much better relationships that are full of consent and communication, ultimately experiencing much more pleasure!
Being sex-positive can be difficult, especially for those whose sexual behaviours may not align with a person’s cultural/religious values or if a person has been sexually assaulted. This can make it harder to talk openly about these topics, so it’s important to take your time and if you are not comfortable being openly sex-positive, simply internalise it on your own.
As always, if you’d like to talk more about this topic or you’d like to share any feedback, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can!
Lots of Love,