Sexuality is a fundamental component of what it means to be human. It is one of the most basic drives behind the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of human beings. So if we’re built to attract a mate, have we refined our sexual practices beyond mindless coupling? When having sex with a partner, we aim to understand our partner’s desires and enjoy fulfilling them. When masturbating, we aim to understand and love our own bodies. Sexual pleasure is about exploring and embracing our human sexuality to fulfill our desires. It is completely natural.
We’re All Different
Whether we’re attracted to the opposite sex, the same sex or both, the truth is: We learn how to experience sexual pleasure for pleasure’s sake by understanding our own sexual desires and responses.
Our enjoyment of specific sexual behaviors and practices varies from one individual to another. For example, pornography may be irresistible to some people and repugnant to others. The point is that no matter what stimulates our individual sexual desires or which sexual practices we use to satisfy them, we are all sexual beings. How we choose to behave as sexual beings is up to us.
Remember, sex has been shown to promote better sleep habits, less stress, more happiness, etc. Sex is a healthy bodily function. Our bodies thrive on the chemicals released during orgasm, so a healthy sex life is indeed part of a healthy body.
How will you experience sexual pleasure?
Are you or were you ever under the impression that there’s a “right” way to enjoy sex? A lot of what we see and hear – movies and TV shows, commercials, even listening to the exploits of our friends – would have you think so. If you’re wondering why your sex life isn’t playing out the way modern culture tells you it should, it’s good to remind yourself that your sexual-response triggers are unique to you. So how will you experience sexual pleasure?
Maybe you have a sexual fantasy. If you have a partner, he/she might enjoy it as much as you do! Talk about it with your partner. Understand that sexual pleasure is a matter of mutual interest. Remember that consenting adults can be as sexually adventurous as they please. And don’t forget that your partner is likely to have an entirely different set of turn-ons.
Communication is Key
Successful, long-term relationships are based on communication. Feeling safe and trusting our partner is the foundation for comfortable, relaxed healthy sex. Safety, comfort and trust allow us to freely discuss our sexual needs and limitations with a partner. Be direct! Speak up!
“I like it when you touch…”
“I really enjoy…”
Everyone doesn’t have a partner. Not everyone wants a partner. Some people are between partners. The reality is: You don’t need a partner to enjoy great sex.
“Would you like me to…”
Open, frank communication with a partner is fundamental to giving and receiving maximum sexual pleasure. Mutual trust in each other’s desire to please while respecting personal boundaries can lead to heightened enjoyment
It’s About You
It’s okay–even healthy–to masturbate regularly. Orgasm not only relieves stress; it also boosts the immune system and burns calories! Indulge in whichever solitary sexual behaviors bring the most pleasure. It’s up to you to choose how you reach orgasm. There are no rules, no “right ways” to achieve sexual pleasure as long as there’s no danger to you or anyone else.
A satisfying sex life begins and ends with an acknowledgement and understanding of our ownsexual needs and responsibilities. Ultimately, we are responsible for our own sexual pleasure. Then we can acknowledge the needs and responsibilities of our partners.
Check out this link for more resources on sexual pleasure!
Declaration of Sexual Health
In 2019 the World Association of Sexual Health held their 24th World Congress where they published the Declaration on Sexual Pleasure. You can read more about that here.