Christmas In July – ASK A SEX THERAPIST

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It’s July and Wal-Mart and Amazon have decided to throw down in an epic battle of the discount giants and I’m just over here trying to take advantage. I will say, however, it’s kind of getting me in the Christmas spirit. Yes, I know it’s a bit early, but with all these discounts, I can’t help but think about how I can use this as an early opportunity to chip away at my Christmas list.

The Holiday Season has to be one of my favorite times of the year. There’s a spirit of giving that seems infectious and propels everyone, regardless of religious affiliation, to celebrate relationships, whether with family, friends, or partners. However, I think that in the hustle and bustle of taking care of everyone else, it’s important to carve out a little time for yourself. I have a habit of always buying a small gift for myself as I’m shopping for others. Some may call it a little selfish but eh, what can you do?

And so it is with orgasms.

I think we often look for the gift of orgasm from our sexual partners. We expect them to know exactly what to do to give us those moments of involuntary muscle spasms that usually cap a satisfying sexual experience. When we experience a climax, we praise our partners for their sexual abilities or take time to reminisce about the skill set of partners past. Toe-curling, body-quaking orgasms can seem to help us escape from reality, even if for a moment, and even bring us closer to our partners. On the flip side, we often blame them if an orgasm is not achieved, and in some instances, end relationships because, “They just couldn’t make me come.” But whose responsibility is it anyway?

It’s important to know and understand how your body responds and this understanding usually comes from self-study. That means you should know what your body likes and loves before expecting someone else to be able to provide you pleasure. Yes, you should understand your basic anatomy and women should know if they’re able to orgasm through penetration alone or if they need clitoral stimulation to climax (as most women do). AND that means that you’re responsible for your own orgasms. Yes. You.

Although it can be difficult to have conversations with your partners regarding what turns you on, open and honest communication can not only benefit your sex life, but your relationship as a whole. Once you set the stage for dialogue that is non-judgmental but moves you toward pleasure, you open the door for better sex and an enhanced relationship. Also, not every sexual encounter will end in an orgasm and that’s ok. Often when we’re focused on that one goal, we miss the beauty of the spiritual and physical exchange that can occur during sex. Although orgasms are amazing, they’re not always the capstone of every sexual exchange.

Orgasms are important and it’s imperative you understand what works for your body. Don’t be afraid of self-study. While Wal-Mart and Amazon duke it out and you might take advantage of their discounts, don’t forget to unwrap the gift of orgasm for yourself. Take time to understand what turns you on so that if you choose to share yourself sexually with a partner, you can properly exchange gifts.


De-Andrea Blaylock-Johnson is a licensed clinical social worker and sex therapist in private practice at Sankofa Sex Therapy, LLC. She’s on the Executive Board of the Women of Color Sexual Health Network and has been featured as a sexpert on Check out her YouTube show, Ask A Sex Therapist, where she answers your questions related to sex and sexuality.



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