Sex Ed

Sex Education ⚤ #

As you probably know, sex education at American public schools is narrowly focused on basic anatomy. My parents, for whatever reason, did not provide much supplemental information. The unstated sentiment was that I should figure it out for myself. On one hand, the minimum competencies are mostly innate. My daughter was born in 2004. On the other hand, such a rich area of behavioral affordances prompts much more detailed exploration.

Annotated bibliography #

History #

British primatologist Richard Wrangham argues that humans have domesticated themselves by a process of self-selection similar to the selective breeding of foxes described by Dmitry Belyayev. Perhaps this theory sheds light on the origin of patriarchy.
Feb 25, 2023 Interview

A stunning lemons to lemonade story: Based on the non-fiction book The Honest Courtesan by Margaret Rosenthal, the 1998 film follows Veronica Franco, a courtesan in sixteenth-century Venice who becomes a hero to her city, but later becomes the target of an inquisition by the Church for witchcraft.

Despite some fictional elements, Hysteria 2011 is a charming alternate history of the vibrator.

The invention of the polygraph inspired a remarkable film, Professor Marston & the Wonder Women 2017.

Thomas Maier wrote a history of the first scientific investigation of human sexuality. The associated miniseries, Masters of Sex 2013, incorporates some fictional elements that well complement the extraordinary story. I particularly enjoyed the rich depictions of Sensate Focus Therapy.1

Contemporary Feminism vs. Dignity #

Perry, L. (2022). The Case Against the Sexual Revolution. John Wiley & Sons.

Harrington, M. (2023). Feminism Against Progress. Regnery Publishing.
Mar 2, 2023 Interview

This important book is unfortunately written in a conversational stream-of-consciousness style with complex sentence constructions. Here is a simplified summary.
  • Part One examines the history of feminism from the 1600s to around 1950. This information isn’t all that important. You can skip this part and get most of the arguments. In my mind, this part is mostly a flex by the author to show that she has done her homework.
  • Part Two describes the three areas that have been disrupted by disembedding, disembodiment, atomization, and marketization.
    • The relationship between men and women
    • The relationship between mother and child, “the devouring mother”
    • The relationship between mind and body, “meat lego gnosticism”
  • Part Three suggests some ways to address the aforementioned problems.
    • Commit to marriage and take advantage of work-from-home compatible jobs to better share the responsibility of caring for family members.
    • Don’t blindly favor androgynous associations. Embodied sex can make a difference. Examples of where biological sex segregation is appropriate include Boy/Girl Scouts, small military units, and prisons. Examples where sex segregation is usually inappropriate include elite executive golf clubs and corporate boards of directors.
    • Abstain from hormonal birth control. That is not to argue against all types of family planning, but to reject casual, no-consequence sexual encounters.

Clark-Flory, T. (2021). Want Me: A Sex Writer’s Journey into the Heart of Desire. Penguin Books.

Science #

Hite, S. (2003). The Hite Report: A Nationwide Study of Female Sexuality. Seven Stories Press. (Original work published 1976)

Hill, S. (2019). This is your brain on birth control: The surprising science of women, hormones, and the law of unintended consequences. Penguin.
Nov 21, 2022 Interview

Hooven, C. (2021). T: The story of testosterone, the hormone that dominates and divides us. Henry Holt and Company.
Oct 27, 2022 Interview

Research Collection on Orgasmic Meditation 🪷

Kegel Exercises

Originally developed to treat urinary incontinence, improvement in sexual arousal and orgasm are happy side effects.2 See kegel exercises

Some dietary tweaks:

  • For improved body odor, avoid meat3 and eat mushrooms4
  • Ginger5
  • Fenugreek6

Lube carefully7

Cannabis8

Tools for Healthy Relationships #

Menakem, R. (2023). Monsters in Love: Why Your Partner Sometimes Drives You Crazy - And What You Can Do About It. Central Recovery Press.

Excellent, except for Chapter 37 “Healthy Monsters and Healing Relationships.” Instead, I recommend my pages on health and exercise.
May 16, 2023 Interview

Sensate Focus Therapy1

Orgasmic Meditation 🪷

Morin, J. (1996). The Erotic Mind: Unlocking the Inner Sources of Passion and Fulfillment. Harper Perennial.

Shah, R., & Davis, B. (2020). Nourish: The Definitive Plant-Based Nutrition Guide for Families–With Tips & Recipes for Bringing Health, Joy, & Connection to Your Dinner Table. Simon and Schuster.

Pregnancy #

Check out Dr. Greger’s recommendations!

What to eat during late pregnancy, labor, and delivery?10

Parenting #

It’s simple.

Do you own work. If you’re in a great state of mind then you can improvise great solutions to any parenting challenge. ䷤

Kearney, M. S. (2023). The Two-Parent Privilege: How Americans Stopped Getting Married and Started Falling Behind. University of Chicago Press.
Oct 5, 2023 Interview

Kids are the ultimate judge of the health of your relationships and sex life. 🚸

Summary #

Honor and elevate. Don’t degrade and cheapen.

Ladies first.

Anasyrma

Credit: Lucy Churchill

Notes #


  1. Sensate Focus Therapy (summary) ↩︎ ↩︎

  2. Nazarpour, S., Simbar, M., Ramezani Tehrani, F., & Alavi Majd, H. (2017). Effects of sex education and Kegel exercises on the sexual function of postmenopausal women: A randomized clinical trial. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 14(7), 959-967. ↩︎

  3. Havlicek, J., & Lenochova, P. (2006). The effect of meat consumption on body odor attractiveness. Chemical Senses, 31(8), 747–752. https://doi.org/10.1093/chemse/bjl017 ↩︎

  4. Nishihira, J., Nishimura, M., Tanaka, A., Yamaguchi, A., & Taira, T. (2015). Effects of 4-week continuous ingestion of champignon extract on halitosis and body and fecal odor. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, 7(1), 110–116. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcme.2015.11.002 ↩︎

  5. Benefits of Ginger for Menstrual Cramps ↩︎

  6. Fenugreek Benefits for Sexual Function, Painful Periods, and Milk Production ↩︎

  7. Edwards, D., & Panay, N. (2016). Treating vulvovaginal atrophy/genitourinary syndrome of menopause: How important is vaginal lubricant and moisturizer composition? Climacteric: The Journal of the International Menopause Society, 19(2), 151–161. ↩︎

  8. Mulvehill, S., & Tishler, J. (2024). Assessment of the effect of cannabis use before partnered sex on women with and without orgasm difficulty. Sexual Medicine, 12(2), qfae023. ↩︎

  9. See Scott Carney’s The Monk who F*cked Everything: a Brief History of Print Capital from Tibet to Modern America ↩︎

  10. Best Food for Late Pregnancy and Best Food for Labor and Delivery ↩︎