It has been a ride, folks. For everyone. The only power I have is wishing you well from this keyboard. I hope there’s been little to no suffering in your life, but much reflection, action, and growth during the last year.
Being back in France where this whole journey began is a dream. If you haven’t been around too long, James and I had plans of settling in Georgia, USA. But, having been met with a global pandemic – and a system (ehm, president) that had no grasp on reality – left us reconsidering our future. It has been a grueling process, I’ll be honest, but it’s allowed Jay and I to peel back the layers and ask the right questions of ourselves.
For me, what helps is getting back to the basics; revisiting the lessons that made me whole. At the end of the day, James and I seek two things: peace and pleasure. Luckily for us, we find those things in the same places: writing and sex!
Ironically, one of the places I did most of my inner work was during my time as a sex coach. By exploring life beyond my own existence, I gained confidence and perspective. I no longer practice; however, for the sake of the theme – peace and pleasure and to provide some solid reminders – here are 8 of the most incredible lessons I learned during my time as a sex coach.
1. It Isn’t About You
I was listening to Cameron Glover online recently, and she mentioned this specific lesson. It may seem obvious, but so often have I witnessed people dismissing someone’s experience by objectively invalidating or justifying it in their own terms. Approaching a person with curiosity and support, rather than judgment and agenda, creates space for honesty, trust, and enlightenment. By making a situation about you, you are only robbing that person of their security, validity, and truth.
2. Unicorns and Butterflies Don’t Live Here
This is the reality: people don’t come to sex coaches with their victories, at least not at first. Individuals seeking such services usually require assistance in area(s) they can’t navigate on their own. Bracing yourself for the harsh realities of another person’s troubles requires mental fortitude and empathy. It is a great responsibility to take on another person’s demons and sit well with them. The blessing in this is that you are creating a safe and sacred space for others to release themselves of their burdens, giving them permission to have demons in the first place.
3. You Won’t Always Agree with People
I won’t lie, I’ve had clients whose belief systems clash with mine. I’m not naïve; in life, not everyone is going to think the way I do. What makes humans so intriguing to me is our vast range of life experience, characteristics, and thought processes. In saying that, I have one basic rule I will not budge on: never validate or encourage dehumanization. There is a grave difference between opinion and dehumanization. Having someone confront you with their blatant discrimination against women, POC, LGBTQ+, disabled or senior folk, is oftentimes a very scary and uncomfortable situation. To deal with this, I have referred clients to therapists and provided educational resources. When suggestions and tools were declined or not taken seriously, I have refused my services.
At times I judged myself for not following through with these individuals; however, it is beyond my range of expertise, and I refuse to risk the perpetuation of such belief systems. Learning that it is not my responsibility to save people – that they must do the work themselves – regardless of their situation, may be one of the more difficult, yet valuable, things to swallow.
4. Sometimes People Just Need a Safe Space
Human beings are social creatures. For overall wellbeing, we require connection to some degree. Sometimes that may look as simple as being provided a safe space.
Every human has their unique life experience. The brain is a complex organ that represses certain happenings, while holding on to others like muscle memory. Navigating these complexities can be an overwhelming and tricky process, oftentimes deeply connected to the ego, causing trust issues, inability to open or communicate in a healthy and productive manner. As a sex coach, it can take several sessions with the same client before they share their experiences and needs. The day that this happens is an honour because it shows trust and confidence have been established.
When walls come down with one person, it is proof that it can happen again. Like a flower blooming, what begins as fragile becomes vibrant and present! Having a safe space to just be yourself, share your story, and learn to own your truth is something I wish every human could know.
5. Not Everyone Has Access to These Services
Being aware that not everyone has access to sex education and coaching services is one of the heaviest lessons I learned. I am a white, abled, middle-class, cis-gender female (that was a mouthful), and this field has profoundly put that into perspective for me. Generally, coaching services are not cheap, which excludes the accessibility for lower-income communities. Also, this arena is saturated with people like me – another white girl on the internet.
Representation of POC, LGBTQ+, bigger bodies, disabled bodies, and senior individuals is hugely important simply because that’s what the world looks like! By not diversifying our platforms we are excluding full communities. It has got to stop!
6. Topics I Prefer
Sex coaching brought clarity to areas I wish to focus. For one, letting go of my sex coaching career was a choice I made so I could pursue my writing further. If it isn’t obvious, I mostly enjoy writing on alternative lifestyles such as BDSM (heavy on the DS), open relationships, kink, normalizing these things, along with body diversity (micro-penis, anyone?) and female pleasure! With the BLM movement, and my experience in the south of the USA, I plan to learn more on the connection between sexual education and social justice, something that’s long overdue.
7. My Favourite Giants in the Sex Ed Arena
Since March of 2017 I have been researching my butt off on all things sexuality (more specifically in my area of interests), and without surprise I discovered some incredible humans along the way. Here is an unexhausted list of my favs:
- Cameron Glover: I only recently discovered this badass femme, but I’m in loovveee. She is a valiant voice in the sexual education arena, with an “inclusive, pleasure-focused, and social justice-oriented” approach – you know, the way all sex-ed should be! Additionally, she is a content creator and business coach for other sex educators.
- Kate Sloan: I will always have a warm place in my heart for this woman, as she was my gateway into sex blogging, specific to BDSM, kink, and open relationships. I recommend everything she puts out, as her voice is genuine, her platforms are inclusive, and she is just…bomb! (Also, Canadian…not biased, I swear 😉)!
- Ev’Yan Whitney: Alright, do a web search of “top sex blogs,” and I promise you she will show up near, or at the top, of every single one. Sex educator and sexuality doula, Ev’Yan Whitney, is the founder of The Sexually Liberated Woman. She is taking the internet by storm, teaching women that pleasure is their birthright, and processing trauma is a courageous journey. She is a straight-up, no bullshit kind of educator, and I am both terrified and in awe of her!
8. My Values and Beliefs
For me, I began intentionally pursuing my sexuality in 2017. Above all, I’ve learned how connected my sexual health is to my overall confidence and peace of mind. Who I am as a sexual being is as equally important to me as who I am in daily life. Why? Because being raised as a female in this society has offered a narrative I profoundly contrast with.
Growing up, I dissociated from my body and my own pleasure. I fell into the belief that neither belonged to me. Thankfully, through (s)exploration and radical self-love, I took back my power. My values lay in the fundamental belief that everyone is their own unique human, and that trying to define someone based on a generalization (or your own biases) only perpetuates harmful narratives and stereotypes. Let a person show you who they are and create space for their love and pain.
It seems simple, but knowing who I am on a fundamental level, specifically in a sexual context, has solidified my own self-worth, strengthened relationships (even non-sexual ones), and has provided a clearer perspective on the diversity of human beings.
The Work Never Ends
Although I am no longer a sex coach, the work here is never complete. For me, peace and pleasure are my compass, and helping others define what that means for them is always a gift within itself.
With all the lessons I’ve learned, the moral is we can apply these to our everyday life. Exchange the words “sex” or “sexuality” with love, relationships, friendships, family, self – there is always room to grow and heal, no matter where you currently stand. It’s a special and unique moment in history, and coping is a subjective verb. This brings me to my final, most significant lesson:
No one has to do any of this alone.
Reach out, comment below, join the Club – we are all in this together.
Fuck well, friends!
Quean Mo xx
So, tell me, what struggles are you facing currently? What is keeping you from your own peace and pleasure? Is there anything here you can implement to help get you closer? I would love to know.