There are a lot of ways to look at sexuality. People are influenced by their upbringing, culture, religion, and life experiences. Our ideas about sexuality evolve throughout our lives based on all these factors. We may feel embarrassed by the subject or don’t know who or when we can talk about it but these kinds of conversations are important.
As we have a more open discussion in society about sex and relationships and advance our understanding of these complex topics, we’ve developed new ideas and terminology. In recent years, there has been more and more talk about being “sex-positive” but what does this really mean?
What Does Sex Positivity Mean?
The idea of being sex-positive stems from the roots of being comfortable with your body, sex, and sexuality in general. It is an approach and attitude. People who are sex-positive accept that sex is a natural part of life and are accepting of it. They are open to learning about the different aspects of sexuality and themselves.
Many of the ideas about sex that people are raised with and are promoted by society are often damaging. Damaging beliefs are rooted in the idea that our sexuality is inherently bad, sex shouldn’t be had for pleasure, and that sex is bad for your health. These beliefs can disconnect us from our bodies and our sexuality. So there is a lot about being sex-positive that challenges these beliefs and ideas from the way many of us were raised.
Sex positivity embraces personal choice in the level of interest in sex as well as which sex practices a person participates in. This means that sex-positive people don’t judge others for their sexual preferences. The focus is on whether or not people engaging in those activities are consenting or not. There is no moral judgment on the activities themselves. There is also no pressure and moral judgment if someone declines an interest in sexual activities some or all of the time.
The fundamental idea about sex positivity is consent, personal choice, and non-judgment.
So What’s the Downside?
Well, that all sounds lovely and super empowering, so why don’t some people don’t like it? Well like many other things in life, the flaw is not in the ideology but potentially it’s practice. No one is perfect and we all are on our individual journeys that are on different spots on the road. We face challenges as they arise and people who sex-positive are no different.
It can be difficult to challenge a lifetime of preconceived ideas. We all have more growing to do, more prejudices to worth through. It’s a part of being human. Despite how sex-positive a person, or community of people, maybe there are still things that come up that go against the primary philosophy. It may be that a person hasn’t had the chance to confront their own prejudice towards a certain activity or orientation or it may be that they aren’t ready to confront those prejudices yet. We need to be patient with ourselves as well as others and as we continue to strive towards our ideals.
People also assume that being comfortable with the idea of a particular sexual activity means that you must be into doing it. That is not the case at all. A person may be ok with others making the personal choice to engage in something kinky, for example, and have no desire to engage in the activity themselves. You don’t need to want to do every possibility under the sun to be ok with other people choosing to do it.
Be Humble & Keep Growing Towards Sex Positivity
If you like the idea of sex positivity, remember that it’s something that you can continue to strive for. It can take some time to become more comfortable with the idea of all the different aspects of sexuality that exist. Keep an open mind and take the time to learn about each thing as it comes up. Gaining all the knowledge will take time and research.
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