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Let’s Talk About Sex!

Sex Ed

Let’s Talk About Sex!

Suppose we did not have a head that is wired in a complicated manner. Maybe having sex would become more animal-like: totally natural, following a deeper underlying pattern, usually without problems. Suddenly, you see the fabulous tail of a male peacock or the irresistible sent of a female cat tickles your nostrils. It’s the right time of the year. You’re a mature animal. There are no rivals close by. Automatically, your level of arousal starts to rise. You do what you simply have to do: You approach your sexual partner directly, gracefully or carefully, depending on your species. Then you perform the right sexual actions.

Copulation is a fact (after Jacques van Lankveld, Dutch psychotherapist & clinical sexologist).

But for us human beings, sex doesn’t work that way, or does it?

No. Apart from acting sexually (having sex in infinitely different ways and styles) and feeling sexually (experiencing sexual desire and sexual arousal) we tend to think about sex. We think about our actions. “Will he like it when I do this?” “Does she want me to do this?” “Will it turn him on or—god forbids—off?” We think about our feelings. “OK, he wants to have sex, that’s pretty clear, but do I really want to?” “I’ve been desiring her all day and now here she is but I’m exhausted from work …” And, worst of all, we think about our thoughts. “What would she think if she knew that my thoughts are on the football match later that evening while we were getting busy?” “What would he think if he knew I was wondering about that mysterious colleague who works in the accounting department?”

Sex isn’t just a physical act combining two bodies in various ways. Sex is always much more than that, especially when we do our best to convince ourselves that it’s nothing more than just combining hands, lips, tongues, penis(es), vagina(s) … The bulk of people experiencing sexual problems and seeking professional don’t have purely physical difficulties in having sex. The origin of all sorts of problems are not only pertaining to sexual desire (difference in the desired sexual act or style; difference in the level of sexual desire … ) with sexual arousal and orgasm (difficulties getting or maintaining your erection/getting wet; either being unable to reach orgasm or just with a specific partner or in a specific situation; reaching orgasm much sooner then you feel comfortable about …), but also with one experiencing pain during sex or being unable to achieve penetration (with the penis or simply with a finger). This is most often, a combination of both physical, psychological and social factors. And every sexual problem will have an undesired impact on your self-image and self-confidence and/or—for those of us lucky to have partners—on your relationship.

So why worry about all this if you’re just a fun loving sort of person who enjoys his own sexuality? The answer is simple: Don’t!

Don’t worry. As long as you find yourself feeling good about the sex you have, not having a care in the world and enjoying it! Just know that when you have sex, there is more than the possibility of STD’s and HIV to think about. As for the other stuff, a condom won’t do you any good.

Think about your own self image and your self confidence. Think about what you emotionally experience having sex. These elements are vital to have and to keep having sex in a way you can enjoy freely. So, just from time to time, ask yourself these two simple questions:

When I have sex, do I feel like it & do I enjoy it?

As long as you find yourself answering with a enthusiastic ‘YES!’ on both accounts, you should take the chance to experience your sexuality freely. If you find yourself doubting your answer; if you find yourself experiencing disturbing or negative thoughts or feelings while having sex, talk to someone about it. Talk to your partner, your best friend, your doctor, a therapist or a sexologist. The bottom line is that it is important to talk to someone about it! Don’t brush those negative thoughts under the carpet for they tend to come back with a vengeance—undesired consequences on your sex life.

All most of us want is to live long, be happy and have a pleasant personal [and for some of us professional] sexual experience every now and then. So think about your sexual thoughts and feelings. For thoughts and emotions, apart from our bodies, are the true reasons why sex can be so enjoyable!

Image courtesy of Shutterstock
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Sam Geuens

Sam is a European clinical sexologist (MSc), hailing from Belgium. After working in the Netherlands as a clinical sexologist & couples therapist, he returned to Belgium where he now works at the General Hospital St. Elisabeth – Herentals. There he co-founded the Policlinic for Sexology in cooperation with the resident departments for Gynecology & Obstetrics and Urology where he counsels people on a variety of sexual problems. Also ethicist (MA) by training, Sam sits on the hospital’s ethics board and in his work with clients focuses on normalizing sexuality as a part of life, viewing different sexual practices and preferences as ‘natural variations’ in turn on’s. To further expand the care he can provide his clients, Sam is currently working towards a certification as solution focused Psychotherapist. Fascinated by the new field of E-healthcare he actively explores what the internet can offer to bring sexual & couple therapy to the next level. At the moment Sam functions as online clinical supervisor & sexologist for the Student Sex Work Project, both supervising interns providing an online, chat based netreach service for students across the UK active in the adult industry and diverse sex work markets and providing online therapy for the Project’s student sex worker-members. A big believer in sharing his views about sexuality, Sam has been active as a trainer for Sensoa – the Flemish Expertise Centre for Sexual Health & HIV for years, providing training to diverse professional groups such as federal police, medical doctors, psychologists, nurses, secondary school teachers & principals, policy makers, etc on topics such as sexually boundary crossing behavior, sexual abuse, sexual & relational education methods, sexuality policies in social & health care organizations, ... Sam sits on the boards of the Professional Society for Flemish Sexologists (VVS) and the European Federation of Sexology’s Youth Group (EFS), and is a member of the International Society for Sexuality and Cancer (ISSC) and Centre for Ethics & Value Inquiry (CEVI) based at Ghent university Belgium.

Get in touch with Sam via email at


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