Sexual Empowerment | Lora Dicarlo

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Sexual Empowerment

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There’s a surprisingly common scenario that many women and femmes experience during sexual interaction that can also be a source of embarrassment: the orgasm achieved in secret after being unable to get across the finish line with a partner.

Perhaps it occurs quietly in the bathroom or on the couch. It may even happen in bed after your partner has fallen asleep. Because just six percent of women experience orgasms through vaginal penetration, sex can often be unfulfilling, so femmes are often left to take care of themselves alone, after the partnered sex is over.

If you’ve ever experienced this, you know the frustration and shame that can result from being unable to orgasm during intimacy. Even if you haven’t acted a role in this particular scene, you may also experience other side effects from a lack of women’s sexual empowerment. Failing to orgasm at all, feeling emotional or confused after sex, feeling shame for sexual desires or actions—these are all consequences of a lack of empowerment.

The most important question is: What is sexual empowerment to you?

What is Sexual Empowerment?

By definition, “empowerment” means “authority or power given to someone to do something” or “becoming stronger and more confident, especially claiming one’s rights”. Women’s sexual empowerment, then, is the authority over one’s own body and rights, especially the right to be intimate however we like.

Sexual empowerment means something different to everyone. It’s as unique as the femmes who define it individually. For one individual, it may look like wearing sexy outfits or posting bikini photos on Instagram. For some, it may be covering up one’s body, or having a quiet and powerful conversation about sex with a new partner. The situations aren’t mutually exclusive; empowerment means choosing what we do and don’t like in each moment. It means changing our minds as often as we like.

The most important question is: What is sexual empowerment to you?

Why Is Women’s Sexual Empowerment Important?

Sexual freedom for women and femmes creates a more equitable society. When we have control over our bodies, we have control over our lives. Being able to control how, when and where we have sex, how, when and where others view our bodies, and creating equitable standards among genders means each individual can enjoy and contribute to society how they choose to. Women’s sexual empowerment means a drastic reduction in rape culture, fewer instances of sexual harassment, and justice for those who are assaulted. It creates a safer and more enjoyable world for everyone, but particularly femmes.

However, it’s not just femmes who benefit from this kind of empowerment. Tough conversations about sex and intimacy benefit men too, removing the pressure to always perform or achieve perfection. A more equitable society gives men the ability to air their concerns, explore new modalities of sex, and encourages vulnerability. A rising tide lifts all boats, especially when it comes to gender equality.

How to be Sexually Empowered as a Woman or Femme

There are so many ways to feel more sexually empowered, but let’s start with the most basic. To begin, you must ask yourself: What is sexual empowerment for me? As mentioned above, this will look different for everyone. Journaling, meditating or reflecting is an important step. You get to define the idea, and you get to set your boundaries. That’s amazing and exciting!

Once you have defined how to be sexually empowered in your life, you’re ready to take another step.

Discovering Your Anatomy

For many women and femmes, simply learning our body’s anatomy is an act of rebellion. The first cadavers dissected in autopsies were almost always male, and for centuries, women’s bodies were not studied properly. Many doctors had wild theories about the clitoris, like the French physician who called it the “shameful member” in 1545 and stated its sole purpose was urination. Many times, it was left out of medical textbooks altogether.

If you feel less than familiar with your own anatomy and genital structures, make it a priority to befriend your body. Some women may benefit from learning more about vaginal structure, and some women may enjoy insight into better sex if they have a penis or have had genital surgery.

Learning about your anatomy is your right and in some cases, an act of defiance.

How to be Sexually Empowered as an Ally

Just as gender equity benefits both femmes and men, sexual empowerment is an important cause men should support. If you have a femme partner, you can still read all the material on her anatomy. You know the common joke that men are clueless about the clitoris? Don’t be that guy!

How to be Sexually Empowered Together

Women’s sexual empowerment benefits everyone and builds a more equitable society. There are so many ways to take steps in achieving that goal, and we hope you’ll get started right away.

While we’d love for femmes and women to feel empowered all the time, on their own, it’s important to invite allies into the conversation, too. No matter what step you choose to take on your own or with a partner, we can’t wait to hear how you’ve chosen to empower yourself and those around you.