Are you Sex Positive? Do you know what that means?
Last week I came a really great article on Huffington Post by Eric Barry, check it out here. About being sex positive, what it is and how many people don’t even know what it is.
So what is it? And why do we care?
By Webster’s Dictionary Definition, Sex Positive means: pertaining to being comfortable with one’s own sexuality and with sexuality in general
Which of course is vague and doesn’t really tell us much other than it means to be comfortable with your own sexuality and sexuality in general. The definition rings true. Sex positive definitely means being comfortable with your own sexuality but at the same time the more relative definition includes being comfortable and non-judgemental of others sexuality.
So Wikipedia (I know terrible source but they do have pretty good definition) defines the Sex Positive Movement as:
A social movement which promotes and embraces sexuality with few limits beyond an emphasis on safe sex and the importance of informed consent. Sex Positivity is “an attitude towards human sexuality that regards all consensual sexual activities as fundamentally healthy and pleasurable, and encourages sexual pleasure and experimentation. The sex-positive movement is a social and philosophical movement that advocates these attitudes. The movement generally makes no moral distinctions among types of sexual activities, regarding these choices as matters of personal preference.
Technical definitions are boooorrrring. So here’s the plain and simple version. Sex Positivity is ” RESPECTING the sexual freedoms, choices and lifestyles of others.” (Nadia Cho, Think Sex Positive; The Californian. Oct 2, 2012. Think Sex Positive )
When we hear definitions like that we often clump it in a really broad, yet narrow mindset. Oh yeah I’m sex positive, I don’t care if your gay, straight, bi, etc. But what really needs to be understood is that sex positivity is accepting and respecting all sexual choices and lifestyles. There are people who have lots of sexual partners, people who don’t really like sex at all, people who like BDSM or Kink, those who are into orgies, those who are in polyamorous relationships, those who prefer monogamy. Regardless of what a particular person is into or enjoys doing, sex positivity means to respect those choices and not shame or judge the people who participate (or don’t participate).
Why is Sex Positive becoming so prominate?
Sex Positivity has been around for quite sometime, its definition has changed according to the changes in culture and time. But Slut shaming has become quite a little niggling problem. And part of why Sex Positivity is so important. Prior to becoming a consultant for my company I had gone through a period of being some what promiscuous (or so I thought) I had slept around a little and was enjoying being 21, young and single. At the time I enjoyed it but after each encounter I had (whether it be a one night stand or if I was dating someone) feelings of guilt and my own personal shame. But now that I look back on it and as I aged, grew and developed as a person. I know don’t think of myself that way at all. I was young, experiencing life and sex and having fun doing it! Slut shaming is out there and its a bad thing. There are even things called Slutwalks. Which is down right despicable. There’s always been that double standard of its cool if a guy can get a ton of girls in to bed with him, but when a girl does it she’s a whore or a slut. Thats not ok. If she is consenting to the sexual encounter, there’s no reason why she can’t do it without judgement. Just because someone chooses to have more sexual partners than others doesn’t mean their character is any less.
More and more people are latching on to the term and promoting it. There are a ton more ways to get out the message, through blogs (like mine! woot woot!) podcasts, documentaries, news publications, organizations and groups of people who are getting together to promote sex positivity. Which is absolutely awesome! The more people familiar with the term and accepting of it is a great thing.
So how can you be sex positive?
If you already are, or are more curious about it, thats great. The first step is to truly accept your own sexuality. It took me a long time to really do that. The last year has been tremendous for that for me. It can be hard to do, for some harder than others.
To me, the key to sex positivity is to remember to each his own. Just because I personally don’t like something doesn’t mean someone else can’t love it or that its wrong. And who am I to judge! Its just not for me. As long as all parties involved are giving the A-OK and are being safe then good for them!
Consent and Safe Sex (regardless of what type) is a core part of Sex Positivity. When the consent is not there then its not ok. If you’re not being safe (ie protection, STD testing, communication) then thats not ok either. Being informed about what your into is the best approach, educate yourself on the health risks, the safety measures and ways you can protect yourself.
Spread the word! If you’re sex positive share it! Share this blog! Share the movement! If your not thats ok too. I won’t judge you if you don’t feel the same way, but I also would expect the same courtesy. Don’t judge me because I am. We all believe in different things, we all follow different faiths, beliefs and practices, the best thing we can do is to respect other’s choices regardless if you agree or not.
So what do you think about being Sex Positive?