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Holiday Gift Giving Guide, WEEK 1

Hey sex fans,

It’s Product Review Friday again. And today we launch our 3rd annual Holiday Gift Giving Guide. Over the next five weeks we will feature a boatload of adult products for naughty boys and girls.

We have numerous manufacturers and retailers participating with us this year. So we will bring you an array of goodies from high-end pleasure objects to inexpensive novelty items. I can pretty much guarantee that this year’s guide will have something for everyone.

Let’s start off with two products from our friends at Good Vibrations.

Night of Romance Kit —— $18.00

Jada
My husband and I were babysitting our 5-year-old niece for a few days a couple weeks ago. She’s at that stage when mimicking adult behavior is so much fun. She loves dress up and playing house, but her favorite thing is having a tea party. She took great pains to put on an elaborate party for me when we stayed with her. Everything had to be just right and it was all in miniature; it was so cute. Her joy was truly contagious.

These few days with my niece rekindled in me a sense of playfulness that carried over to a weekend get away with my man. I decided to save the Night of Romance Kit that I received to review for this special weekend. It’s actually a miniature plastic handbag that contains a Vibrating Couples Ring, a 5oz container of Please Pleasure Cream and a 5oz container of Touch Me Massage Oil.
Full Review HERE!

Good Clean Love Lubricant —— $16.00

Christa
Ya know what I dig about Good Clean Love Lubricant? I absolutely get it that it’s organic; well it’s made of 95% organic ingredients anyway. Their corporate logo includes the words: “Chemistry without chemicals”. That rocks!

Good Clean Love Lubricant is a water-based lube, but it has a very natural feel to it. Other water-based lubes I’ve tried can be kinda runny, but not this one. That’s because it’s actually more of a gel than a liquid. If there’s one drawback to a water-based lube it’s that it can dry out with vigorous use. And when I’m pegging my little sub, butt-boy BF, Alex, things can get pretty vigorous, ok? Good Clean Love Lubricant has less of a problem with drying out, but if I find that it is getting a little tacky, I just add a wad of spit. Not very lady-like, you say? Fuck you! Alex totally gets off on spit. So I’m happy to oblige.
Full Review HERE!

Here’s a mighty big handful of pleasure from the good folks at Funwares.

Nexus Max 5 —— $69.95

Glenn & Hank
Glenn: “This here is the Nexus Max 5. The package says it’s a G-spot massager. But, if you ask me, it should also say it’s a P-spot massager.”
Hank: “Glenn thinks everything belongs in his ass.”
Glenn: “That’s not exactly true. But, for the most part, if a toy is designed for G-spot stimulation it’ll probably work wonders on your prostate too. That being said, I’ll admit that the Nexus Max 5 is not for beginners!”
Hank: “That’s an understatement. I couldn’t get the first knob on the insertable end past my rosebud.”
Glenn: “Yep, this is a professional grade insertable, that’s for sure. But for a talented power bottom like me, there’s nothing too it.”
Hank: “I love the shape of it. The Nexus Max 5 is made of medical grade silicone, which is one of the safest and most hygienic sex toy materials available. It’s completely smooth and when you lube it up, with a water-based lube, (and make sure you only use water-based lube) it’s slick and slippery and basically slides into Glenn’s ass like a hot knife through butter.”
Glenn: “The unique shape of the Nexus Max 5 makes it so easy to handle, even when lubed up. You, or your partner, can get a real good grip on the thing. And you can power-fuck your ass with it too, although most guys will probably just use it as a butt plug. Here’s the thing, if you can’t easily insert at least two or three fingers in your hole, this toy is not for you.”
Hank: “I swear my man has the most talented ass in town. It’s been known to swallow my entire fist, so the Nexus Max 5 is a cakewalk for him. It comes with a removable bullet vibe, which has 3 variable speeds of vibration. It runs on one of those little round watch batteries and it comes already loaded with a battery right out of the package.”
Full Review HERE!

Now we welcome a brand new manufacturer to our review family. Just about everyone’s favorite high-class video production house, Digital Playground is not making sex toys too. We have two to share with you today.

Riley’s Pleasure Ring w/ Silver Bullet —— $24.99

Ken & Denise
Ken: “Denise and I are huge fans of Digital Playground. In fact our all time favorite movie is Pirates.”
Denise: “So imagine our delight when we heard that Digital Playground is now producing a line of sex toys with the Pirates theme.”
Ken: “Think of it as an adult version of the movie themed toys kids get at a fast food outlet.”
Denise: “We scored the Riley’s Pleasure Ring w/ Silver Bullet for review. It’s named after the porn star, Riley Steele, who appears in Pirates 2.”
Ken: “You get this white stretchy cockring that is molded with skulls and a hook to keep with the pirate theme. It’s pretty funny, actually. Anyhow, there’s a barrel shaped thingy on the top of the ring, this is where the silver bullet attaches to the ring in a horizontal fashion.”
Denise: “It is pretty comical, but it works! The bullet has 3 speeds and two pulse settings for variety. It’s amazing what they’re able to do with bullet vibes these days. It used to be, and not so long ago, they were only one speed.”
Full Review HERE!

Jesse Jane’s Pirate Booty Stroker —— $24.99

Brad
Jesse Jane is my favorite porn star. I think I have at least a half dozen of her movies, including the two Pirates movies. So when I saw the Jesse Jane’s Pirate Booty Stroker at Dr Dick’s place, I asked if I could review it.

I want to start my review with how the stroker looks in its package. The clear molded plastic case features a totally hot pic of Ms Jane in her pirate costume. You can see the Jesse Jane’s Pirate Booty Stroker through the clear plastic and it looks like an ice sculpture. Very cool! I know ya can’t tell a book by its cover, but the presentation is totally hot, especially for a Jesse Jane fan, like me.

I opened the package and fished out the jelly-like stroker. It’s made of Cyberskin, which really soft, floppy and squishy. I have to say; upon closer inspection of the stroker outside the package, it is a little eerie. It’s like this see-through elf of a Jesse Jane. There’s also a sweet smell to it, almost like strawberry shortcake. I kid you not.

The thing about this stroker is that it has two small apertures at either end of Jesse’s tiny body — one where her asshole would be and the other at her mouth. Since you can see right through her body, you can also see the textured canal that is supposed to surround your dick when you fuck this thing. I mean that’s what a masturbator is all about, right?

Right off the bat I’m thinkin’ I’m never gonna get my 7.5” thick cock into the Jesse Jane’s Pirate Booty Stroker no matter how stretchy the Cyberskin is. But I proceeded anyhow. I got my favorite water-based lube; it’s the only kind of lube I’d ever use with Cyberskin. Funny, there’s nothing on the package that would warn a user about that. In fact the package has no information about the care and handling of this special material. And that’s way too bad, because if you use the wrong kind of lube with Cyberskin it will disintegrate. And if you don’t care for it after each and every use, you will destroy it.
Full Review HERE!

ENJOY

And they’re off!

Hey sex fans,

It’s Product Review Friday once again and today we have two very delightful toys to tell you about. Because the two toys come from different retailers, I will be introducing each in turn.

First up is a fun new product for a couple to enjoy. It comes to us from our new friends at The Adult Toy Shoppe.

Dr Dick Review Crew member, Angie, does the honors.

Erotic Enhancer Bunny —— $21.99

Angie
I am so delighted to find a toy that both my husband and I can enjoy while we are enjoying one each other. I think that even though the is a plethora of vibrating toys on the market, few are actually designed to be enjoyed by a couple during intercourse. Dildos, particularly the ones that have the shape of a penis are wonderful for solo play, but they can get in the way, both literally and figuratively, when a couple plays together. This is the case with my husband. He, like most men, is put off by sex toys that have a realistic shape. I suppose I don’t blame him. I’m sure that if the shoe were on the other foot, so to speak, I wouldn’t welcome a sex toy that realistically looks like a woman’s parts in our play together.

At the same time, I need clitoral stimulation if I am going to be orgasmic. This is particularly true during intercourse. So the problem has always been, how do I get the clitoral stimulation I need during intercourse without the use of a traditional clunky, intrusive and noisy vibrator?

Allow me to introduce you to the Erotic Enhancer Bunny. It’s a bunny-shaped cockring that vibrates. How fun and creative!

The Erotic Enhancer Bunny is made of TPR (Thermoplastic Rubber). It’s a phthalate free material that is both soft and stretchy but also durable. I see nothing on the package that says it’s latex free, so those with a latex allergy should beware.

There is a multispeed bullet vibe in the head of the bunny that is powered by 3 mini batteries, you know the flat kind. The manufacturer thoughtfully included the first set in the package. Thank you very much! You adjust the speed and turn the vibe on and off by using the dial on the vibrator. The bullet is easily removed making the bunny-shaped cockring a breeze to clean. More about that in a moment.

I love the fact that the Erotic Enhancer Bunny is waterproof. And that it transforms my husband’s beautiful penis into a rabbit vibe. I couldn’t be happier.

The whole thing is pretty discreet. It measures 1.75 inches across and 3.25 inches tall. My husband says that the ring is mighty snug on him. He found it uncomfortable after 20 minutes. That was long enough for me, but he specifically asked me to tell you that the Erotic Enhancer Bunny is designed for use by a man with a small to medium endowment. Ok, I defer to him on this. I suppose that’s a problem with a one size fits all concept.
Full Review HERE!

Next we hear from Review Crew members, Mick & Chuck. They are going to introduce you to kinky little setup from the newest retailer to join our review family. Join with me in welcoming TheirToys.com a nice place to shop for Adult Toys.

Cockring and Leash Set —— $29.95

Mick & Chuck
Mick: “The Cockring and Leash Set came to us just in time for Halloween. And we put it to very good use.”
Chuck: “Yeah, but it’s not just a Halloween gimmick now, is it?”
Mick: “Right! You can use the Cockring and Leash Set Set any day of the year — Christmas, New Years Eve, Valentines Day, Arbor Day, the 4th of July, your pervy boyfriend’s birthday, whatever.”
Chuck: “Ok, I see you’ve decided to be a little wacky today.”
Mick: “The Cockring and Leash Set is such a fun and kinky setup; I think a little wacky is in order, don’t you?”
Chuck: “I guess you’re right. So let’s get on with telling our audience what the Cockring and Leash Set is, ok?”
Mick: “Sure! It’s pretty simple actually. There are two parts. First, there’s an adjustable black leather cockring, or strap, if you prefer. There is a D-ring on the strap to which you hook on the fine metal leash. The metal leash has a black leather loop grip.”
Chuck: “The Cockring and Leash Set is a KinkLab product, so you know it’s gonna be good.”
Mick: “Oh yeah! Listen, if you’re interested in buying a kinky product like this, even if you are new to kink; spare yourself the disappointment of buying any of the crap that is floating around out there. We’ve see more than our share of that shit here at the Review Crew. If you want quality, look for a quality brand, like KinkLab.”
Chuck: “Right on! So I was saying that we had a ball with this Cockring and Leash Set for Halloween, right? Well, here’s how it went down. We were invited to a totally tripped out party that we knew would surely turn into an orgy before the night was through.”
Mick: “And we were not disappointed. Chuck dared me to wear the cock strap under this flimsy rawhide loincloth, which was pretty much the totality of my costume.”
Full Review HERE!

ENJOY

The Self-Sexological Exam

No podcast today; instead there’s this…

The Ballad of Sylvie

Hi, my name is Sylvie. I’m 24 and I’ve been sexually active for three year, but I’ve never had an orgasm…at least not that I know of. I hear my friends talk about their orgasms and I know I should talk to them, but I don’t want them to know. Do you think there’s something wrong with me?

Boy, if I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard this complaint over the years, I’d be a wealthy man. Even in this day and age where sexual messages permeate the popular culture, there are still some women who are unversed about orgasms and their own bodies.

However, I almost never hear this from men. Sure, our sexual response cycle is more obvious. When we’re at attention, we’re at attention. I often wonder what the world would be like if men had as hard a time getting off as some women do.…

But let’s begin with dispelling the notion that there may be something wrong with you. There isn’t. You do, however, fall into a category we in the biz call “pre-orgasmic.” The idea is that you’re going to be orgasmic one day—you’ve just not accomplished it yet.

And I’m gonna assume a couple of things, even though I think it’s really dangerous to make assumptions in this line of work: 1. You’ve never had an orgasm, because you’d sure as hell know it if ya had. 2. You are sexually active with male partners.

I’m going out on this limb because I absolutely never hear from pre-orgasmic lesbians. And it stands to reason—lesbians tend to be more attuned to their bodies, and they certainly know their way around the bodies of their partners. But I digress.

Orgasms don’t come easily for some women. I suppose there are as many reasons for this as there are pre-orgasmic women. A woman’s pleasure center (her clit) is more subtle and less obvious than a man’s raging boner. Women are socialized about sexuality—even nowadays—in a much different way then men are. Men have more cultural permissions to be sexually adventuresome than do women. And, truth be told, men have never needed any permission to get themselves off!

The Ballad of Amy

Case in point: When I was just beginning my practice, a young couple, Joel and Amy, visited me with this very issue. As I’d soon learn, Joel considered himself a top-notch cocksmith. He was fond of saying that he could reduce any woman to blubbering jelly with either his mouth or his magic wand. But Joel was completely flummoxed to discover that the love of his life was immune to his sexual prowess—so he hauled the little woman in for my diagnosis.

Amy, for her part, squirmed with discomfort. I thought she’d absolutely die as Joel detailed the explicit intimacies of their lovemaking. I knew I’d get nowhere with Amy while Joel was there, so I told him to take a hike while she and I had a chat.

I first asked Amy about the early messages she got about her body. She thought for a moment and answered: “I don’t know if this is what you mean, but one of my earliest recollections is my mother teaching me to wash myself. I must have been no more than 3 or 4. She began by telling me I should wash my body like we washed dishes. First and foremost, I was to attend to my hair, my face and my hands—like we would first wash the fine crystal and silverware—because they would be what would attract a husband. Then I was to wash the rest of my body. Finally, at the end of the bath, I should wash my genitals…but only with a different cloth than the one I used on the rest of me…just like we washed the pots and pans.”

This unearthed memory startled Amy. Even though she hadn’t thought about it for years, she realized she continued to wash herself in the same manner to that very day. And she followed that revelation with one equally astonishing. She told me that once she reached puberty, her mother took her aside for “The Big Talk.” Menstruation and all the embarrassment and confusion that came with it added to the “pot and pan” imagery. As to her genitals, her mother said: “You must save that for the one you love and will marry.”

“This dirty part, this thing that’s cursed with a monthly unclean bloodletting was supposed to be SAVED for the man of my dreams. YUCK! Why?”

Poor Amy! She was a tangle of mixed messages. No wonder she was pre-orgasmic. No wonder fucking Joel, despite her love for him, was a teeth-clenching chore. No wonder his begging to eat her pussy was met with, “Oh, please don’t!”

There was a lot of work to be done, but she was eager to begin.

We started her with journaling and a self-sexological exam. I instructed Amy to get a hand mirror and a detailed diagram of female genitalia. She was to familiarize herself and make friends with her estranged pussy. Her exam would entail a touch-test. Every square inch from her anus to her navel was to be tested for sensitivity. I suggested she draw pictures of herself and color them to represent the levels of sensitivity: red being the hottest and most pleasurable areas; blue being more neutral, and all the colors in-between. I encouraged her to try this exercise first with a dry hand, then a wet hand using a personal lubricant. I encouraged her to spend at least 30 minutes a day for three consecutive days. She had a lot of reacquainting to do.

And this was to be private time. Joel was not to be invited.

On the forth day, if she was ready, she could invite Joel to join her. No pressure; just a suggestion. But whenever she was ready to invite Joel, he could only attend as a guest, NOT a participant. Joel was only to receive the royal tour of Amy’s fabulous cunt. She was to show Joel her drawings, and once the show was over, that was it. No fucking, no sucking, no nothing—this was only to be an exhibition.

Poor Joel was beside himself. He couldn’t see the logic of him not being involved. I had to impress upon him that this was Amy’s work—not his. And if he just held on to that magic johnson of his, he’d be back with an orgasmic Amy in no time—but he had to be patient.

When next we were together, Amy shared her artwork with me. I could tell right away from pictures she’d drawn and colored that she’d found her clit. Amy was extremely pleased with her “newfound” pussy. She was eager to take it to the next level.

The following week’s play would include a vibrator. Amy was to buy the one she wanted, take it home and introduce it to her pussy. Using the pictures she’d created, she was to throw it into first gear and start making small, lazy circles around the blue areas, working her way to the bright red areas. She was to do this privately for 30 minutes for three consecutive days or until there was a breakthrough.

I knew this wouldn’t take long, and it didn’t. The very next day, I got the anticipated phone call. Amy was breathless.

“Holy shit, I did it!” She exclaimed. “I saw stars—the earth moved and I made so much noise that Joel came running into the room. He thought I’d somehow hurt myself. He stood there stunned as I threw myself another screaming me-me.” I loved the way she already had a name for her orgasms…screaming me-me’s.

And that’s how Amy went from pre-orgasmic to I totally know how to give myself a big fat juicy orgasm in a matter of a couple of weeks.

The Ballad of Becoming Presently Orgasmic

Now let’s review for you, Sylvie. The basic formula for achieving an orgasm is acquainting yourself with your pussy. Map out all the points of interest. Find out what feels good, and repeat it. The object of this first step is not to stress about having an orgasm—it’s all about reconnecting with your body.

The more you know about yourself, the better you’re gonna be at slamming yourself a “screamin’ me-me”. Knowing your way around your pussy is also helpful in partnered sex, especially if your partner doesn’t know shit from Shinola about your pussy.

Step two is masturbation. You may have tried before without success. This time, thanks to step one, you’ll better know your hot spots. I’m a big fan of full body masturbation. So while you’re diddling, be sure to spread the sexual energy all over your body—tits, ass, feet, mouth, whatever you like—stroke, pinch, pat, massage, and rub yourself all over. Vary your breathing, gyrate your hips, listen to sexy music, rent some porn, watch yourself in a mirror, or throw in some Kegel exercises. Try a wet hand. Play with yourself in the bath. Hell, dance around naked with a jewel in your navel…whatever it takes.

Like Amy, many women experience their first orgasm with the help of a vibrator. I encourage you to experiment with one—or try another sex toy.

Be sure to keep a journal during this exploratory period. This will help you later to bridge the gap in communicating with your partners.

Good luck!

Elemental, my dear Watson!

Hey sex fans,

This week’s Product Review Friday is coming your way a day late. Technical difficulties {damn internet tubes!} prohibited me from posting this yesterday, Friday. But you know what they say, better late than never.

The Dr Dick Review Crew and I are delighted to welcome a new retailer to our happy family — Vibrator.com. They are the purveyors of fine sex toys and they sent us a new Tantus product for review.

Review crew members, Ken & Denise, are here to show you around.

Elements Pi —— $49.00

Ken & Denise
Denise: “The Review Crew has reviewed a few Tantus products so far. You can find them HERE.  From all we’ve seen, Tantus is a health conscious and pleasure centric company that is producing some really wonderful products.”
Ken: “The Elements Pi is a real good example of this corporate philosophy. It is made of 100% pure silicone, so you’ll never have to worry about using it internally. It is completely non-toxic and safe.”
Denise: “And because it’s nonporous high-grade silicone it is easy to clean and you can sterilize it too. This makes it the perfect toy to share.”
Ken: “And since both Denise and I are totally into our butts we love a toy we can share!”
Denise: “The Elements Pi is ideal for the novice butt pirate. It comes with a removable vibrator and features an arch of bead-shaped ripples from a very slim 5/8″ up to 1 1/4″ diameter. Its ergonomic base is molded to the probe end. And the silicone warms to your body. It also makes it is very pliable and comfortable.”
Ken: “The base also has a bit of a tab on it so that when inserted it provides a little extra ‘taint’ (perineum) massage. Very nice!”
Denise: “You should also know that the Elements Pi doubles as a fantastic G-spot vibe. The textured pad on the base, that Ken just mentioned, is an effective clit stimulator too.”
Ken: “If you are new to ass play, you’ll want to keep in mind that you need a lot of lube for any insertions. And in the case of the Elements Pi, because it is a quality silicone toy, you can only use a water-based lube. A silicone-based lube would degrade the toy’s surface and you don’t want that.”
Denise: “Ken and I can’t decide if the Elements Pi is a plug or a probe. I say it’s a little of both. The graduated sized beads on the shaft make for easy insertion even for someone unfamiliar with anything in her/his butt. The user can enjoy just hanging out with the toy on each of its ridges.”
Ken: “That’s true enough, but if it was supposed to be a plug, then there should have been another ridge or notch on the shaft at the base so that my ass sphincter could clamp down on it and keep the Elements Pi in place. As it is, that doesn’t happen and so I found that it kept slipping out of my hole. This was disappointing when I tried to use it as a plug in my ass while fucking Denise. But, I must say, it is terrific to sit on.”
Denise: “The bullet vibe that nestles in the base of the Elements Pi comes already loaded with batteries; those little round watch batteries. It has only the one speed, but I suppose you could easily swap it out for a dual-speed bullet of the same size.”
Full review HERE.

ENJOY

Human Rights + Sexual Rights = Sexual Freedom

On this the first annual National Sexual Freedom Day, sponsored by The Woodhull Freedom Foundation, I’d like to propose something quite radical. I suggest that our sexual freedoms, here in the United States, are intricately linked to universal sexual rights. And I contend that the notion of universal sexual rights is at its core a respect for human rights and human dignity.

In a world wracked by poverty, disease and war; where we threaten our very existence with climate altering pollution, nuclear proliferation and extreme population growth; is there room to talk about human rights that include sexual rights and sexual freedom?

I emphatically answer yes! In fact, I assert that sexual inequality and oppression is at the heart of many of the world’s problems. I contend that trying to address human rights without including the essential component of sexual rights and sexual freedom is ultimately doomed to failure.

An absence of sexual rights and sexual freedom leads to domestic and societal violence; human trafficking; suicide; a rise in Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs); unplanned pregnancies, abortion, and sexual dysfunction.

You know how we are always being encouraged to Think Globally and Act Locally? Well while we busy ourselves securing and celebrating our sexual rights here in this nation, I think we’d do well to focus some of our attention on how our struggle binds us to the rest of the human community.

I offer three examples of what I’m talking about. I invite you to consider how a myopic sexual rights and sexual freedom agenda, divorced from the overarching issues of human, economic and social rights, can be ineffectual and even counterproductive.

***

In 2008 the research community was all aflutter about ‘conclusive’ evidence linking HIV transmission and uncircumcised males. While I’m certainly not ready to take this data on face value, let’s just say, for the sake of discussion, that the link is conclusive. A massive campaign of circumcision was proposed as the best means of HIV prevention. The medical community would descend on epicenters of the disease, scalpels in hand; ready to eliminate the offending foreskins from every male in sight, young and old.

But wait, there’s a problem. Most HIV/AIDS epicenters are in underdeveloped countries. In these places, access to enough clean water to drink or attend to even the most basic personal hygiene, like daily cleaning under one’s foreskin, remains an enormous chronic problem. Without first addressing the problem of unfettered access to clean water and adequate sanitation, which according to The United Nations is a basic human right, further disease prevention efforts are doomed.

I mean, what are the chances that surgical intervention would succeed—one that would involve significant and sophisticated aftercare—if there is not even enough clean water for drinking and bathing?

These well-meaning medical personnel suggest imposing a strategy that not only works against nature—our foreskins do have a purpose after all: a healthy prepuce is a natural deterrent to infection. But this intervention would also violate long-held cultural and societal norms—circumcision is abhorrent to many of these same cultures. Wouldn’t this proposed prevention effort to stem the tide actually make matters worse?

***

Indentured sex work is another indicator of how human rights, sexual rights and sexual freedom are intertwined. Until the economic and educational opportunities for women throughout the world improve—which is a basic human right according to The United Nations—women will remain chattel. Families in economically depressed areas of the world will continue to be pressured to sell their daughters (and sons) simply to subsist.

Closing brothels and stigmatizing prostitutes overlooks the more pressing human rights concerns at play here. Sex is a commodity because there is a voracious market. Men from developed nations descend on the populations of less developed nations to satisfy sexual proclivities with partners they are prohibited from enjoying in their own country. Young women (and boys) in developing countries are viewed as exploitable and disposable, because they don’t have the same civil protections afforded their peers in the developed world. And runaway population growth in countries that deprive their women and girls access to education and contraception inevitably creates a never-ending supply of hapless replacements.

Addressing the endemic gender inequality in many societies is key. Equal access to education and economic resources must come before, or at least hand in hand with any serious sexual liberation effort.

***

Finally, people in the developed world enjoy a certain level of affluence and economic stability which allows them to indulge in sex recreationally. Thanks to effective birth control methods we can ignore the procreative aspects of sex and replace it with a means of expressing a myriad of other human needs. Not least among these are status, self-esteem and self-expression.

If we’re trying to prove something to ourselves, or others, by the way we conduct our sexual lives, simple prohibitions against certain sex practices won’t work. If I’m convinced that unprotected sex with multiple partners and sharing bodily fluids is edgy, cool fun, without serious consequence, as it’s portrayed in porn; I will be more likely to express myself the same way. This is especially true for young people who are already feeling invincible.

Case in point: there has been a startling uptick in seroconversions among young people, particularly gay men, which indicates that disease prevention efforts, even in the world’s most affluent societies, are simply not up to the task. It’s not that there is a scarcity of resources, quite the contrary. It is more likely that these efforts are not connected to a fundamental understanding of the role sexuality plays in the general population. I believe that sexual expression and sexual pleasure are the overarching issues here. These too are fundamental human rights.

No amount of safer sex proselytizing is going to prevail unless and until we look at why and how we express ourselves sexually. As we unravel this complex jumble of motivations and behaviors, effective prevention strategies will manifest themselves clearly. We must develop a sex-positive message; one that celebrates sexuality, builds self-esteem and counteracts the prevailing media messages of sex with no consequences.

***

National Sexual Freedom Day brings into focus the micro-strategies needed to combat a macro problem. But it also shows that we cannot work for and celebrate sexual freedom in a vacuum. It’s imperative that we see how global health and wellbeing is completely dependent on basic human rights, including sexual rights that include gender and reproductive rights, the elimination of sexual exploitation and the freedom of sexual expression.