When to Say "Yes" or "No"

Our sexual intimacy contributor, Tess Deveze, shares some wisdom about sexuality.


Here are 3 realisations I have had since training and working as a sexuality clinician and from these realisations, regrets.

Regret 1: Saying 'yes' when I really wanted to say 'no'

Studying, practicing and teaching consent has opened my eyes to how often I non-consented myself. We are a should culture and especially regarding intimacy and I have said 'yes' to things because I felt like I 'should'. I have now learnt that the word 'no' is not nearly as scary as I used to think, and my life has gotten better because of it.

Regret 2: Pushing through the pain
Intimacy should never hurt. It sounds simple, but in combination with my 'should' brain, I would say 'yes' to intimacy even when it hurt. And guess what? It didn't make anything better, it made things worse. I want you to scrap the saying 'no pain, no gain' and replace with with 'no pain, no pain.' Intimacy should NEVER hurt. 

Regret 3: Being too shy to find people to talk to about s*x
This will sound ridiculous coming from me, but back in the day, I didn't reach out to people when I needed to. I didn't know there were sexuality communities, educators, workshops and clinicians to help me live a better life and have better relationships. I regret taking so long to realise that it's okay to ask. I'm doing the work I do now because I have been the person who desperately needed help and didn't know how to find it. I want to be there for as many as I can.
With all that being said, I am stronger after these learnings, which regret stands out to you?

Connect with Tess here

Shared with love by Jan James, Hope After Breast Cancer

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