Write your own sexual history

// 15 April 2008

One of the many brilliant resources that I’ve come across through our sex-ed for adults project is the About.com sexuality blog.

Today they recommend an exercise about writing out your own sexual story. Not in the sense of a sexual history you might tell a doctor, or long list of conquests, but more a private diary, or opportunity to think through your experiences of sex and sexuality.

Cory Silverberg suggests some excellent questions to get started with, such as:

How has your thinking about sexual satisfaction changed over the years?

How has masturbation been influenced by having sex with others?

Have you had experiences where your body, mind, or emotions didn’t work the way you wanted them to sexually? Describe some of these times.

What were some of the sexual values you were raised with?

How have your values changed, and how have they remained the same over time?

Have you noticed any differences in your body as you’ve gotten older that impact your sex life?

Some of the questions are quite basic, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good exercise for everyone, and I like the way those questions are put – for example “When would you say you lost your virginity?” is phrased in a way to challenge the notion this means one particular thing (penetrative sex), and might act as a gentle prompt to re-think.

Good stuff.

Photo by Paul Watson, shared under a Creative Commons license

Comments From You

figleaf // Posted 16 April 2008 at 2:31 pm

I remember maybe ten or fifteen years ago someone got the idea of collecting oral histories from older family members and then before you knew it there were maybe a dozen books and articles and even a computer program about it.

Anyway, from what I understand the best way to prompt people to tell their stories is to give those kind of clear but very open-ended questions. Usually, if I understand the process, it takes a couple of questions to sort of break the ice, and then each follow-up question can unleash pages of memories.

So this project is a very cool suggestion, Jess, both for your adult sex ed initiative but (and this is why I think it’s *really* cool) for those of us who take the time to do the work.



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