Sex & Death: Why So Taboo?
On a recent hike through the beautiful Rocky Mountains, I was shaken out of my sex-positive, sex-normalized bubble and reminded that sex and death are still considered taboo, unspeakable, outrageous and scandalous topics. I met several new friends who were intrigued to learn that I am a "Sex Therapist". The response I get when I add the descriptor "sex" in front of therapist, is wildly more reactive and interesting. When I simply say that I am a "Therapist, Psychotherapist, Couples Therapist, Marriage Therapist, Counselor, or even Head Shrinker", people nod and may inquire more but it is not the eye popping, panty twisting reaction when I dare say Sex Therapist! Dun Dun Dun
After the initial "sex therapy" shock dissipated, my new friends and I openly discussed topics of sex, death, parenting, love, adventure, work, travel, nature, and ego as we huffed and puffed up the vertical mountain.
How strange it is that two of the most natural topics in life are so difficult to discuss and left in the shadows.
Sigmund Freud based much of his work on his theory of "Drives" where he hypothesized that all instincts fall into one of two major categories, the life instincts and the death instincts.
"Life Instincts (Eros): Sometimes referred to as sexual instincts, are those that deal with basic survival, pleasure, and reproduction. These instincts are essential for sustaining the life of the individual as well as the continuation of the species. While they are often called sexual instincts, these drives also include such things as thirst, hunger, and pain avoidance. The energy created by the life instincts is known as libido. Behaviors commonly associated with the life instinct include love, cooperation and other prosocial actions.
Death Instincts (Thanatos)The concept of the death instincts was initially described in Freud's book Beyond the Pleasure Principle, in which he proposed that “the goal of all life is death” (1920). He noted that after people experience a traumatic event (such as war), they often reenact the experience. He concluded that people hold an unconscious desire to die, but that the life instincts largely temper this wish."
Quoted from VeryWell
Why are sex and death so taboo?
They symbolize two of the most transformative experiences humans undergo: the beginning of life/birth (a result of heterosexual intercourse), and the final exit/death. Sandwiched between these two enormous bookends is day-to-day life, where the majority of the western world's attention comfortably resides.
Sex: a wonderful, dangerous, connecting, painful, lovely, explosive, terrifying endeavor that can cause cosmic pleasure, induce traumatic pain, and result in new life.
Death: a confusing, painful, hard to comprehend, lonely, relief, take over of entropy, final goodbye (to our scientific knowledge, not taking spirituality, religion, or other post-death beliefs into account).
Why this long blog rant on two topics that make you squirm in your seat?
Because I'm a cruel and unusual, sex-crazed, death-obsessed, psychoanalytical sadist??? No not quite.
Because these topics weave through everyones life in some fashion and I truly believe (and the science backs me up) that we can navigate these issues more effectively and with higher quality of life if we can talk openly and comfortably about them.
Learning how to bring up hard topics in a calm and compassionate way is a invaluable skill. Soul-searching and examining one's own values and experiences around sex and death and considering new ways to put meaning to these topics are essential for leading a fulfilling and aware life. If you are reading this, you were clearly born, weather sex or science made you, you are here with us today and you will surely die. No one makes it out alive. What is on the other side? Perhaps we find out, perhaps we don't. What we do know, is that in this life we will experience death and quite likely, sex.
What would it be like to die in your own bed at home?
How would sex change if your told you partner what you liked and didn't like?
I want you to have a wonderful life, full of growth and self-discovery and the ability to talk comfortably about thorny topics so that you can experience pleasure and less anxiety. Give yourself a voice. Shed light on these amazing topics. How are they unique to you? How would you like your experience of these topics to be? How do you want to teach your children about these topics? Your lover? Your parents? Yourself?
Ask. Answer. Be honest. Be curious. Take a part in how you experience your life!
Mothers Of Boys:The Birds & Bees
It was such a pleasure to collaborate with Eileen & Sandi, the creators of the company Mothers of Boys, to present a special event regarding the "how to" tactics of having more comfortable and effective conversations with boys regarding sex, porn and much much more!
Here is a review of the event and Here for Photos.
A review of the topics covered:
If you have 3 or more sons (and no daughters) visit the MOB page to check out membership to this incredible group of women and attend educational and fun events hosted by the marvelous Eileen & Sandi.
To see pictures of the event taken by the talented Mellisa Hirsch, Click Here!
If you are interested in booking a workshop with me, please contact me here.
I am thrilled to announce that our workshop is just around the corner!
Last Chance to come join our panel of sex-positive Professionals!
When: November 15th @ 6pm
Where: The Painted Primrose in Niwot 7960 Niwot Road
Who: Amazing Local Professionals who are Sex positive
What: Panelists will be presenting on how functional nutrition, an aligned nervous system, eastern medicine and continued respect of intimacy and the erotic throughout the lifespan into old age are essential components to holistic wellbeing and happiness!
We hope to see you there!
There is still time to register for this FREE event. Click Here
The Naked Truth
Sex Therapy may sound like a taboo profession but it is simply a specialized psychotherapy that focuses on helping people create healthy sexual identities, satisfying fulfilling and functioning sexual lives, and a connection to themselves and the world at large. Sex therapists, like myself, work with a variety of professionals who collaborate and address client concerns in a holistic and comprehensive way.
What is Sex Therapy?
Located in the heart of beautiful Niwot, Colorado at the lovely Painted Primrose, you will have the opportunity to talk with a variety of specialists:
Auburn Meisner, LMSW
Auburn Meisner, LMSW, is a licensed social worker and sex therapist and in Colorado. Auburn provides individual, family, couples, group, and sex therapy at Intimate Inquiries in Niwot Colorado and at The Intimacy Institute in Boulder, and leads workshops, retreats and speaks at conferences focusing on different topics on human sexuality. Auburn holds a Master of Social Work degree from Washington University in St. Louis and holds a postgraduate certificate in Sex Therapy and Human Sexuality from the Buehler Institute. Her clinical experience and diverse training allows her to effectively address a variety of issues that range from relationships, sexuality, desire, pleasure, intimacy, gender identity, sexual orientation, communication, trauma, depression, anxiety, and major life transitions. She uses a solution-focused, strengths-based approach that integrates empirically supported methodologies such as Cognitive Behavioral, Mindfulness, Humanistic, Art Therapy, Emotion focused therapy and Family Systems theories with modalities that include Gina Ogden's 4 D Medicine wheel, somatic yoga, and music. She uses empathy, a sex-positive approach and a touch of humor to guide her practice and facilitate growth.
Auburn will be hosting this panel of sex-positive professionals.
Jessica O’Leary, MA, CVW
Jessica has over 12 years of experience working in elder care. Jessica is a Gerontologist, has a certification in Validation® from the Validation Training Institute, is a trained Art Therapist, as well as a speaker on Alzheimer’s, Dementia and other topics related to aging including the Savvy Caregiver. Jessica is passionate about educating the community on the need for intimacy throughout the life course, especially as people age and how cultivating and maintaining intimacy has a profound positive impact on well-being through the aging process. Jessica has worked in Nursing Homes, Assisted Livings, in Memory Care, Palliative and Hospice Care. Jessica is currently a Liaison at TRU Community Care and is available for private consultation with families and organizations in need of guidance through the aging process.
Dr. Hillary Rowenhorst
Dr. Hillary Rowenhorst comes from a family of chiropractors out of her 5 siblings, 4 are chiropractors! Dr. Hillary graduated from Cleveland Chiropractic College in Kansas City with a Bachelors degree in Biology and a Doctorate in Chiropractic. After graduation Dr. Hillary and her husband Dr. Topher Rowenhorst moved to Boulder, CO to be part of a community that understands and values the importance of an active lifestyle. Dr. Hillary and Dr. Topher have 2 chiropractic offices, HillTop Chiropractic in South Boulder and the second in Gunbarrel. Dr. Hillary cares for patients from hours old to 100 years old.
Dr. Hillary will be discussing the importance of your spine being aligned and how that connects to your bodies ability to experience pleasure.
Alyssa Neill RDN
Alyssa Neill is a Registered Dietitian, who simplifies the pathway to a balanced biochemistry through nutrition. With her whole-food-centric protocols, Alyssa promotes that nutrition is always individual; as we each have our own bio-chemical “finger print”. With nutrition counseling, personalized protocols, and an enthusiastic no-fail atmosphere, Nourishment Nutrition provides guidance for women and men throughout the US. Alyssa continually guides her clients to reach optimal health and performance, while to illuminating life through whole food, individualized nourishment.
Evolutionarily, it's all about, "survival of the fittest", or maybe, "survival of the sexiest” is more accurate. The desire to be beautiful, vibrant, and attractive is one that is deeply intertwined with our desire to survive. To be wanted, lusted after. To reproduce. Stop shaming yourself for wanting to radiate health and beauty and come to the grand realization that our sex hormones, are what give us our vitality. Lucky for us, through nutrition, we can optimize our biochemistry to balance our hormones, and reach radiance.
Jeff Brew, L.Ac., Dipl. Ac.
Jeff has been in practice for nearly four years. He earned a Bachelors in Psychology and went to SWAC (Southwest Acupuncture College) in Boulder for his Masters in Acupuncture. Aside from general holistic wellness, Jeff’s main clinical focus tends to be women's health and sports medicine. Jeff has found that Sex Positivity and acupuncture collide on a variety of levels. He treats many patients for conditions such as erectile dysfunction, pelvic floor pain, low libido, and anorgasmia, but the roots actually go much deeper. Jeff acknowledges that acupuncture approaches healing through a mind / body / spirit approach and American culture tends to have peculiar attitudes toward sexual personhood, his main goal is to help people connect with, and embrace their essential selves. While psychotherapy therapy is a critical tool for many people, acupuncture acts on our ways of processing emotions that aren't based in language. By applying the principles of traditional East Asian medicine we are able to address complex spiritual and emotional issues around things like traumatic history (sexual or otherwise), body dysmorphia or other body image issues, and helping to navigate emotions surrounding gender identity to name a few. Generally speaking acupuncture helps people connect and embrace who they truly are, dissolve shame, heal trauma, and remove the blocks that are getting in the way of their delving deep into the rich, zesty, wonderful sex life they have every right to enjoy. Being able to address these issues without having to experience the vulnerability of explicitly articulating them in a clinical setting can be such a huge step for people in all stages of the therapeutic process.
Who is this workshop for?
This workshop is for anyone curious in learning about local sex-positive professionals and how they can enhance your life in and out of the bedroom.
Is this workshop age-appropriate for children?
Up to your parental discretion. There will be no sexually explicit images in this workshop. There will be information specifically addressing sexual health and pleasure for all age groups. There will also be a raffle giving away Discounted sessions from the sex-positive professionals as well as intimacy paraphernalia.
This fall, Intimate Inquiries is hosting an informative and fun event at the Painted Primrose.
Intimate Inquiries brings to you a panel of sex positive professionals who will be presenting on their expertise and provide you with excellent information relating to sexual health and happiness.
Click here to register.
Hope to see you there on Tuesday November 15th from 6pm-8pm.
Everyone is invited! Come curious with questions and ready to win some free swag.
Ever wonder if there was an ethical, functional and fun alternative to monogamy? Come join Elizabeth Wood and Mim Chapman, PhD, in exploring different relationship styles in their upcoming workshops.
For more information email me or Elizabeth.
Registration closes soon!
Come join this November in Boulder!