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Claiming Our Sexual Pleasure 

Beth Keil July 2020

Sex, Aphrodite Awakening, Kuel Category Expert: Beth Keil 

“I’ve never had an orgasm.”

This is what a woman in her early 30’s told me, when I was a counselor at a woman’s health center in the early 1980’s. She had never told anyone, including the nurse practitioner she just saw.

She had a partner, and they were sexually intimate, but she had no clue as to what pleased her. It appeared he didn’t either. 

Sexual Pleasure, Ladies, Is Our Birthright! (Men, as well)

Physical pleasure is as diverse as the number of stars in the sky.”

Our entire body is wired for pleasure, and involves all of our senses! Did you know that a woman’s clitoris has more nerve endings than the tip of the penis?   

Its purpose is pleasure; our pleasure. 

Physical pleasure is as diverse as the number of stars in the sky. What pleases one person, might not another. What pleases you one day, might not the next. When you pleasure yourself (masturbating doesn’t have the same feel to it – and yes, that was a play on words!), it might not carry over to when you’re with a partner, or to a particular partner.

Knowing your anatomy and physiology can be useful, so you have an idea of where things are, and what you might feel or experience. However, it’s important to recognize and appreciate that each of us has our own unique responses, interests. And, as I spoke about in June’s blog, feelings about our bodies, sexuality, and sex. If we were brought up with judgment, including body shame and guilt, we might not feel entitled or deserving of pleasure.    

Pleasure, Of Any Kind, Requires We Surrender Ourselves To It      

There can also be fears about being vulnerable, so we try to protect ourselves from being hurt and abandoned (many times subconsciously). But, there’s a price. We don’t experience the intimacy we really want, need or desire! It’s like, “Go away, a little closer”. Without vulnerability, none of us can be deeply intimate, as there’s a part of us that we guard and keep closed. 

You may have heard Brene’ Brown speak about these fears in her TED talk on vulnerability. I’m going to add, pleasure of any kind requires we surrender ourselves to it, so we can receive it!  In this culture, we don’t really speak about surrender as part of pleasure. (I will share more about it in an upcoming blog.)

As a hypnotherapist, I have worked with many women and men who were dealing with shame and guilt. Through hypnotherapy, they were able to begin to heal and free themselves, and to feel good about themselves, unlike ever before!  I worked with a woman whose gynecologist suggested hypnosis for vaginismus, or painful intercourse. She was unable to even insert something the size of a pencil into her vagina without pain. During the course of the hypnotherapy, the core of her issue revealed itself: anger, feelings of self-worth, and fear. For her, it wasn’t about pleasure, but around intimacy and vulnerability, and of course, surrender. 

The Power Of Being Heard And Acknowledged

About five years ago, I was speaking with a woman in her mid-to-late twenties. She shared with me how she was embarrassed about a particular physical response she had when she was sexually intimate with her partner.

It didn’t upset him, but she was ashamed of it. I listened to what she said, and told her I knew other women who also squirted, and how they also went through feeling embarrassed, but now weren’t. Up until this moment, she had felt very alone and I don’t think she ever shared this with another person, except for her partner. During our conversation, she spoke about how her religious upbringing had influenced her sexuality, and how she wanted to feel differently. She wanted to enjoy sex and pleasure!

Sometimes we each just need to be heard without judgment, to be acknowledged for how we feel, and what we’ve experienced.  Each is powerful in creating inner change.

The Only Way To Discover What Pleasures Us Is To Explore It!    

Just like our clitoris, our taste buds and sense of smell are there to provide enjoyment and enhance our experience.”

When I spoke with that woman at the health center, I suggested she read the book, For Yourself – The Fulfillment of Female Sexuality, by Lonnie Barbach. It was a book I learned about when I was a student and peer contraceptive educator at Penn State University. It introduces the reader to a process for exploring and learning about her body.   

Exploring our physical pleasure is similar to trying different foods to discover what textures, flavors, and aromas you enjoy. Just like our clitoris, our taste buds and sense of smell are there to provide enjoyment and enhance our experience. 

And it’s worthy of our time! 

Sexual Pleasure Comes From More Than The Clitoris

By focusing on this one aspect of our body, of having such a narrow view, we miss out on the pleasures our entire body can provide us!   It’s the same when men focus on is staying hard, and not on pleasure.   The media has made us destination-minded; having us focus on orgasm, and not pleasure-focused.

I know of a number of people who make love with their partner for three or four hours at a time!  They explore one another’s bodies as a means of creating deeper intimacy, connection, and vulnerability through pleasure.  Such a person doesn’t have an orgasm destination either. 

Making Pleasure A Priority

Just like anything in our lives, making pleasure a priority is important, and it means scheduling time for it!

If this sounds unromantic, don’t you schedule other things you enjoy like a massage, time away, spending time with friends, etc.?  Scheduling something, and keeping the appointment with yourself, is what makes it happen. 

Think of taking pleasure time, as sacred. And that’s exactly what it is, whether we are alone or with a partner.

Here’s to Aphrodite Rising!


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About The Author:
Beth Keil helps her clients change and transform their lives. She offers a special focus on helping people claim the birthright of their erotic identity and to live in the joy, intimacy, and connection it brings. Beth is a Registered Nurse, MindSet Coach, and a Board Certified Hypnotist. Through her work, she enjoys integrating all her interests, experiences, and skills to bring sensuality, sex, and the erotic into greater awareness and conversation. You can schedule a 30-minute complimentary phone consultation with Beth using the Discovery Session icon.

2 thoughts on “Claiming Our Sexual Pleasure 

  1. Audrey says:

    I love this so much! It is a solid discussion to have with the men in our lives, not just ourselves. Pleasure can equal orgasm but there are so many other things that bring pleasure. I wish I would have known that when I was younger. Thank you for sharing!

    • Beth says:

      Audrey, I so appreciate your sharing, and how what you read impacted you.

      I agree this is an important conversation to have with the men in our lives and with other women; the programming we learned doesn’t create, let alone enhance, intimacy, and connection in our relationships, particularly sexual. I wish you all the best in having them! And if I can be of support, let me know!

      So you know, in September I will be blogging about a relationship model that does create and enhance intimacy and connection. In August, however, is about having conversations with our lovers (or other close relationships) expressing needs, wants, and desires.

      I look forward to hearing your thoughts after you read them!


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