Let’s Talk About Sex – Part 2

The exhibit, Undress Your Mind, at the Institute of Sexology certainly followed through on its promises with over 200 artifacts from around the world spanning art, film, photography and more. The exhibit, while about sex and the study of sex, was about just that: the science of sex.  How it has been viewed over the ages, particularly as seen through the work of pioneers like Kinsey, Mead and Freud.

It took me nearly an hour to meander my way past strange sexual contraptions, close-up photos of genitalia and phallic art from around the world.  The end was rather anticlimactic, the last portion of the exhibit featuring rather boring interviews from four researchers on the subject.   It would be untrue to say that any of this wasn’t interesting — but as I wandered my way through the exhibit, I was left wanting for more.

As I was preparing to leave, I stopped to sit down a minute next to some groups of girls huddled in a corner, up against a wall, looking at a graphic book of photographs featuring peoples’ naked bodies.  That felt like the most interesting part of my experience at the exhibit — witnessing this fascination we have with ourselves and why its such a source of embarrassment and sometimes shame.  As if our curiosities are ours alone, as if we are not in any way part of a larger whole — we somehow think that we are different in our wanting to see, to feel, to touch, moreso than anyone else.

As I reflected there on the seat near the exit, I felt disappointed.  Like I hadn’t been loved properly.  I wasn’t sure why I was left unsatisfied with the entire exhibit and I also wasn’t sure how I was going to write about anything interesting.

When all else fails, get your iPhone out of your purse and check your messages.  I had an email from my mother in Dallas.  Her neighbor had lost his battle with cancer, she said.  Life goes by in a blink, she said.

Reading about a loss after having just spent an hour  mulling over life’s primal life force, it occurred to me what I had been hoping for and from this exhibit without being fully conscious of it.  I wanted it to be about something more than just sex.  I wanted it to be about love and connection and how sex fuels these things.  I wanted it to be less about the early days of sexual research and more illustrative of how this research has allowed humans to become more comfortable with ourselves.  I wanted it to be about how sex shapes our lives.  How our yearnings and desire for one another, while fundamentally necessary, bear both positive and totally disastrous consequences in our lives.  I wanted it to be about the meaning of the role of sex in our lives.  Perhaps that was the whole point of the exhibit — to get us thinking.  And as far as the meaning of the role of sex in our lives, I suppose that’s the conclusion we must conjure for ourselves.

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Good Sex = Good Health

Good Sex = Good Health

Not that we need any excuses to have sex, but because it’s a pleasure and often pleasures are associated with luxury, there’s a tendency to dismiss its importance as an integral part in an overall healthy lifestyle.  According to WebMD, sex not only eases stress and improves our sleep but it also lowers our risk of heart attack, lessens pain and gives a boost not only to your libido but to your immune system.  Plus, it’s fun.   So, Hayden’s Listers…have sex and not only be merry but also healthy.

Here’s a little funny for you that we liked:  13 Types of Sex Everyone Should Have at Least Once.

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Let’s Talk About Sex

Let’s Talk About Sex

After the shocking news of what happened in France this week and then Russia’s ridiculous decision to ban drivers with so-called “sex disorders,” I’m thinking about opposites.

The opposite of love is hate.  And hate is, obviously, what both of these headlines have in common.

But I don’t want to talk about hate.  It gets far too much attention as it is.

In the spirit of “make love, not war” what I actually want to talk about is sex.

Today I’m in London and heading to the Institute of Sexology for its current exhibit, “Undress Your Mind.”

“Moving between pathologies of perversion and contested ideas of normality,” the exhibit “shows how sex has been observed, analysed and questioned from the late 19th century to the present day.”

What particularly interests me is how the Institute “highlights the profound effect that the gathering and analysis of information can have in changing attitudes and lifting taboos.”

Sound familiar?  I believe it resonates loudly with what we’re doing here at Hayden’s List.  By gathering people’s opinion, of course our main mission is to direct the LGBT community to those with open doors.  But zoom out a little and look at things through a wider lens and you’ll see that by gathering this information en masse, we have the potential to create real change on very large scale.

That’s Part 1 of my sex talk.

I’m going to let a little tension build now.

Stay tuned for Part 2.

And while you’re waiting…maybe you could create a little momentum for change and leave a few reviews?

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