Over the past weeks, as I have over the years, I’ve had some conversations with women.
These are women who are looking to heal, expand, change, and improve their relationships. They want so much: to have greater intimacy and connection, to have more pleasure, to share more, feel more, and love more.
They’ve opened the door—out of love, out of desire.
Some of their partners are willing to share the journey, do the work, and go into themselves.
Some are not. And that’s not exclusive to men.
For so many of us, regardless of orientation, sex is still the part of life that’s filled with fear, guilt, shame, embarrassment, anger, and disconnect. And it’s also the part of life that is filled with possibility, energy, openness, expansion, pleasure, love, healing, grace, power, and more.
There are things that women—your woman—would like to say to you, things she’d like you to know.
Sometimes, she’s said these things—once, twice, endlessly—and hasn’t felt heard. Sometimes, she doesn’t know how to say them. Sometimes she’s nervous to say them, scared to say them.
These are the things that have been shared with me over more than 20 years of teaching in the world about conscious sexuality.
Many of them are big and could do with so much more discussion. They’re also not always so simple; we’re complex and our sexuality is complex. But hopefully they plant a seed, a seed of possibility, of opening, of softening.
Because we can have relationships and experiences of incredible, deep, fulfilling intimacy, ones of happiness, growth, excitement, pleasure, and love.
This is an inner journey, as are all aspects of life. Our relationships are more about us than we often see and acknowledge. Our sexuality, when we’re with another, is more about us than we see and acknowledge.
These journeys are difficult because of what they show us of ourselves, and walking the path that takes us into our bodies and our hearts takes courage.
I’m going to digress here to share something from my own journey:
A few weeks ago, I had a massage with someone I do regular exchanges with. It was deep, beautiful, sensual, touching, and filled with love. I was driving home afterward and I felt an anger building inside of me. I’ve done a lot of anger work over time, but this felt different.
I got home, laid down, and the anger became rage. I saw a being in me, an aspect of myself made of fire—it was huge, bigger than me. As I began to work with this, I saw a deeper level of the anger: the impact it’s had on my life. The point of sharing this is how endless, and limitless this inner work is.
Here are some of the things your women would like you to know:
She wants to feel safe with you. This often has nothing do with sex, and sometimes lots to do with sex. The nothing to do with sex part is about how you are in all ways in life. How open you are. How clear you are. And, interestingly, how vulnerable you are.
She wants you to know that sex is not a performance. It’s not a race, it’s not a contest, it’s not a competition. It’s not an achievement. It’s not about making something happen; there’s no “standard.”
She wants you to know that there are many times that penetration is not important to her—in fact it’s sometimes the last thing she wants.
She wants you to know that her sexuality, as is yours, is deep, wide, and has a range of possibilities. There are so many ways of being fulfilled, of feeling loved and desired. There’s a whole body that is delicious and desiring. And there’s a heart, a mind, and a spirit.
Connected to this is her desire for you to receive. And I don’t think you know how important this is. When you receive, you open. And so much of her sexuality, her sensuality, is in the giving. There is so much pleasure for her in exploring your body, in knowing your desire. There is so much curiosity she has about you. There is so much trust in this. There is so much sharing. When you let go of the control you’ve been holding onto so tightly, she welcomes, with such love, with such honoring, the space to meet you in so many ways.
When we are unable to give or receive, important parts of us lie unexpressed. When we can’t express and share these aspects of ourselves, they become blocked within us, and that becomes something that’s blocked between us.
There’s a practice I share with my clients and students:
Make two lists. The first is what’s important for you to give, the second is what’s important for you to receive—in relationship, in pleasure, in sex. My advice is to throw the first draft away, as it’s often the patterns and beliefs we’ve held onto for so long.
Then, starting again, for everything you write down, ask, “Is this important?” If it is, it stays.
This makes us aware of what’s important to us because we often don’t know. And if we don’t know, we can’t communicate that to our lovers.
It’s a growing, organic practice to keep looking at what’s important, and it changes as we change. What we think, want, and need now may not be that way tomorrow. When the circumstances of life change, we change.
There’s an expectation in relationships that things will always be as they are. It’s an illusion.
And speaking of illusion, we get no real education for pleasure, for love, for relationships, for intimacy. The models we see in porn, the media, Hollywood, and religion are filled with fantasy, illusion, myth, misinformation, and misunderstanding.
We have this idea that we’re supposed to know how to do it all. We have this idea that it will happen by itself.
Because of those models, and more, we often don’t know how to have these conversations, we, all of us, don’t know how to listen with an open heart, with love, and to share ourselves with love.
The desire to love, to be loved, the desire for pleasure, is within us.
And in our openness, in our sharing, we step into the possibility of intimacy—of life.