One of the most effective ways to gain more connection, awareness, and control in your body and with your sexual self is to learn about each part of your genitals and it’s role in arousal, sex, and pleasure.
Somatic sex educators can support you in this through a technique called ‘genital mapping’.
To date, I have worked with students who were unaware of the correct names for their body parts. Students who thought parts of their body were ‘abnormal’ and some who have deep shame associated with their genitals.
Creating time to learn about your amazing body in a non-judgemental and nonsexual setting can be a powerful exercise to liberate and inform.
To connect with your body in a different way sheds shame.
During the mapping exercise
Your practitioner will support you by offering a safe and relaxed environment to learn about your body. When you are ready to begin, the session starts by naming and explaining each part of your erotic anatomy on your terms. This can be done through touch or using a vulva/penis demonstration model.
Your practitioner will also ask you to comment on any sensation or numbness in each region and ask you to notice any feeling or emotions that may be associated with each part. In this way, you and your practitioner get a sense or a ‘map’ of your genitals. Through this work, many students learn to integrate the subjective and objective sense of self.
Body mapping is learning the geography of your genitals so that you can discover how your body wants to be touched in all the different places. In the words of one of my students:
“Dee helped me feel comfortable and proceeded at my own pace. It was the first time I had ever explored my genitals in a non-sexual, non-judgemental environment. I had always felt a deep shame with my sexuality since childhood. That it was somehow not okay, I disconnected, even during sex. I am so glad to have learned more about my body and what each part can do and it’s really helped me with my self-confidence and reduced my embarrassment. I feel more connected during sex and pleasure'”
Knowing your Genitals
So often we leave it all to our partners to guess what we like or do to us what might have worked with a previous partner. Through genital mapping, you learn more about your pleasure. Trust me, this will work wonders in lovemaking, opening up channels of communication.
Genital mapping can assist you if you:
- Wish to learn how to control ejaculation and stay in pleasure
- Want to enhance your orgasm
- Experience lost sensation through surgery, childbirth or scarring
- Have numbness or feel disconnected from your genitals.
- Experience pain in the pelvic tendons, muscles, and fascia.
- Wish to enhance self-acceptance of your sexual anatomy
- Want to embrace your sensual self and reach your potential in pleasure.
- You are a survivor of sexual abuse
If you opt for genital touch, your practitioner wears hygienic gloves throughout. Staying in close communication with you during this exercise. She or he will only give touch that you are comfortable with.
This is also an opportunity to discuss any areas of chronic holding in the pelvis, tightness, and issues such as STI’s, thrush, scarring, period regularity and pain often associated with abuse.
When we consider chronic holding in the pelvis from a somatic perspective. We understand that our bodies are tensing and pulling away from the region of unwanted touch a natural bodily survival response. Numbness or tension in this region was an attempt to protect yourself, to protect your body from something it did not consent to. Your body is amazing, it has worked to protect you.
“Learning about your body on your terms can be so empowering”
Much of this theory is based on the work of sex educator and pioneer Betty Dodson, now in her late 80’s, she is an all-time hero of mine.
I shall leave you with one of her amazing educational videos.
Thank you, Betty.