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Breaking Free from Unrealistic Sexual Expectations
How Porn and TV Shows Can Affect Your Perception of Sex and What You Can Do About It
Have you ever found yourself comparing your sex life to what you see in porn or on TV, and feeling like you're not measuring up? Have you ever felt like your sexual desires and experiences were abnormal or weird, simply because they didn't match up with what you saw in the media? If so, you're not alone.
During a recent client call, I spoke with a woman who was struggling with feelings of inadequacy and self-blame because she and her partner weren't having sex as frequently as they used to.
At the beginning of their relationship, everything was hot and heavy. But now that they’ve been together for a while, life happens, sex frequency tapered off, and she was starting to blame herself.
During our call, she pointed to the TV show “The L Word” and porn, telling me (I’m paraphrasing):
“I saw people having lots of sex. How frequently they had sex. And I’m not keeping up.”
She’d watch porn, where everyone has orgasms all the time, and felt weird because she doesn’t orgasm every time. Or she’d see videos of everyone squirting all the time, and she doesn’t squirt.
[Does this sound familiar to you too?]
All these standards or expectations come into your mind when you see something and don’t have the proper sex education to understand how sex is really supposed to go. I know you’ve heard this from me a million times now, but it’s all tied together! So many sex and relationship issues stem from a lack of sex education that we don’t receive…anywhere!
Of course, we talked and by the end of our session, she expressed her takeaways and how her viewpoint had shifted. I highly encourage you to take a moment and listen to what she had to say…
“What I've taken away today is…what's happening here is normal. It's not something that's like unusual and not just me. I was on the treadmill today and just kind of started bawling uncontrollably. Cause I just kind of like, we don't even have the intimacy to like hug or like kiss or touch each other.”
Can you hear the emotion in her voice? I got choked up with her; I never want someone to feel bad about something that is so normative.
It's easy to fall into this trap of comparison, but the truth is that these things we see become our “standards” or baseline. In reality, they are unrealistic and can lead to feelings of inadequacy and shame. Yuk.
So, how can you overcome these challenges and embrace your true desires? Here are some practical tips that I want to share with you:
Seek out accurate sex education: Whether it's through books, online courses, or working with a sex coach like myself, it's essential to have accurate information about sex so you can make informed choices about your own desires and experiences.
Explore your own desires and preferences: Take time to get to know your own body and what feels good for you. This can involve self-exploration, trying new things with a partner, or experimenting with different types of stimulation.
Communicate openly with your partner(s): It's essential to have open and honest communication with your partner(s) about your desires, preferences, and boundaries. This can help you both feel more connected and satisfied in your sexual experiences.
Embrace your own unique sexual identity: We're all different when it comes to our desires and experiences, and that's okay. Embrace your own unique sexual identity, and don't compare yourself to others.
Do you compare yourself to what you see in TV shows and porn? Does it make you feel bad about yourself, like you’re doing something wrong?
Today’s takeaway for you: YOU’RE NOT ALONE!
And you don’t have to suffer alone. You deserve to have a sex life that feels authentic, satisfying, and joyful.
Whatever issues you’re facing, they are normal, and you’re not broken.