Why Is It So Hard To Deal With Shame Around Sexuality?

by Reid on April 9, 2021

Why Is It So Hard To Deal With Shame Around Sexuality?








Reid: C’mon… Hello it’s Reid Mihalko from https://reidaboutsex.com/  and we have a special guest star today.

Amy: Hello.

Reid: It’s Amy Jo Goddard. What…what’s your website URL?

Amy: https://amyjogoddard.com/

Reid: https://amyjogoddard.com/ and I’m wearing one of AJ’s t-shirts which she thought I didn’t…I didn’t…

Amy: I mean I just you know we should be promoting the Sexual Evolution all the time

Reid: We should!

Amy: since that’s what we’re here to do today.

Reid: Yeah

Amy: I think you’ve dressed appropriately

Reid: Yeah and then talking um and talking about what to talk about today, we talked…  we came up with the idea of talking about why doing work on yourself? And working on like sexual pleasure, working on shame and like shame resiliency like why that can be so tough? So we are in my backyard

Amy: It’s so pretty!

Reid: for those of you… for those of you…the duck pond

Amy: Yeah there’s a pond

Reid: The duck pond has water in it ‘coz it…it has run off wait I’m gonna show, it has run off from the rain and it’s starting to become rainy. So there’s…there’s the duck pond it’s got water in it but that’s not as important as about what we’re gonna talk about today. So why you do you think in…in all the…the books you’ve written, in all the work that you’ve done with human beings about this kind of stuff like why do you think it’s so…so difficult?

Amy: Looking at ourselves is hard and I think with sex you know we’re still even though we’ve you know you and I’ve been doing this work for a long time, there’s a lot of people in our field that have been doing this work talking about the importance of learning about sex, there’s still this really big myth that we should just know how to do it, we shouldn’t need help and I think there’s still um there’s you know there’s less of it in terms of like psychological well­-being and working with therapists and doing…doing that kind of work on ourselves but people still feel like…like “There’s something wrong with me if I admit that I’m going to a therapist or if I admit that I’m reaching out to somebody.” And so I think it’s…it’s almost like the shame keeps us in the shame.

Reid: Yeah

Amy: Because we feel shame that we don’t know everything and then that’s what keeps us not asking for help which keeps us in the shame.

Reid: Yeah. So one, if you want to leave a comment like…like how does shame occur to you or how does the dynamic of trying to get better at…at sex or intimacy like how does that occur to you like what are what are the feels that you have around it to build on what you are saying it kinda echoes it? What’s interesting for me is like when I talk about sex toys like being you know like “Professional tools creates professional results” like we have…we have shame that…that my partner needs a vibrator to get off.

Amy: Alright yup

Reid: But like you don’t you don’t think a carpenter feels ashamed that using a hammer, right like I don’t…I don’t

Amy: Good analogy

Reid: Thank you…thank you

Amy: Yeah welcome

Reid: Yeah. It’s all about banging

Amy: [Laughing]

Reid: But like but again like…like…like if you’re using a hammer to drive in a nail you don’t feel bad that you can’t use your fist

Amy: Yeah

Reid: but like it…it’s like “Oh well, of course, you use a hammer because we don’t shame people for using hammers”

Amy: It’s effective

Reid: “to drive nails in, right?”

Amy: Right [laughing]

Reid: And the idea of like “I feel shame about needing to go to a coach or have somebody teach me carpentry.”

Amy: Right

Reid: Right? Or even to go to YouTube and…and watch a video to learn how to you know fix a hot tub like I did figured out how to not poison the hot tub, right?

Amy: You can find everything on YouTube

Reid: Yeah but I didn’t…I didn’t feel ashamed that I was looking for information

Amy: But nobody saw you looking for it that’s part of it too

Reid: Well Google did, Google sees everything even if we’re not

Amy: Alright that’s true. Google they’re keeping task

Reid: but…but the idea of like I wasn’t being secretive

Amy: Right

Reid: like I…I didn’t have to click my browser shut if Allison walked into the room

Amy: Right she’s gonna see any help with the hot tub [laughing]

Reid: Yeah she’s like “Oh my god he’s watching hot tub videos how dare he?” So…so the big thing for me is like there’s the unknown like you don’t know what you don’t know about your body and then there’s all the cultural shame that just swoops in and then the shame like freak…here’s my question for you like for you what does shame resiliency or even just resiliency mean to you? Like as an educator like when…when you’re teaching

Amy: Oh, that’s a good question

Reid: people about that concept.

Amy: Well I think I mean number one it means that we can look at it, we actually can acknowledge that it’s a human emotion; it’s something we all feel. And I know one of the most powerful tools I’ve learned for myself personally and that I work with people on is…is just learning to not only acknowledge that we’re feeling shamed to ourselves but to be able to acknowledge it to somebody else and I think that you’re good at that, you’re good at that, you’ll acknowledge it too.

Reid: Yeah but there’s a lot of stuff that I don’t like also.

Amy: I’m dealing some shame right now about this that’s true but we all do

Reid: Yeah

Amy: And…and so it’s baby you know it’s like what are the steps and I think that is one of the steps is at least being able to acknowledge it to ourselves because the thing that keeps shame in place is that we stay alone with it so acknowledging that it’s there, okay one step being able to acknowledge that there’s something happening around shame even if we don’t say “I’m feeling shame about this.” We could still address the issue of like “There’s an insecurity coming up in me” or “I’m feeling confused about this dynamic that’s happening with us, could we talk about that?” And then that allows us to air the things that we’re keeping to ourselves and holding on to that…that make us small and make us you know and make the shame so big.

Reid: Yeah…yeah like I’ll…I’ll admit shame…shame time, shame admitting time, I have an event coming up a three-day event coming up in six weeks and I have done almost no promotion for it and most of the…the backend stuff like the buy buttons and registrations stuff like isn’t done and I have so much shame and feel like I’m failing everybody that it’s one, it made me it made it hard for me to ask for help. I’m also trying to figure out where all this shame kind of failure stuff’s coming from like I’m trying to play detective and find it but like me being quiet and losing myself in secret isn’t helping me find any resources

Amy: No

Reid: or have some like I don’t I might…I probably have a faster breakthrough asking my friends like “Well what do you think the fuck is going on with me?” And it could be that we just moved and I moved into a house and all these other things but if feels like an excuse, it feels like I’m…I’m excusing myself. But my ability for me the resiliency piece isn’t just talking about it, it’s being how…how long or how do you take care of yourself? Because it’s not always about how long you can be in your feels but can you be in your feels and still be present and take baby steps forward?

Amy: Right

Reid: Right? ‘Coz then if…if at some point it becomes too great and I “shut down” that I go back into my little…little you know container and then it I have to crawl out of that container you know and I think that’s a little bit different than I need to take a pause for self-care because we have to be careful of overachieving this like I have to tough through this but the resiliency is can you…can you stay in it while you stay effective or have your agency?

Amy: And love yourself in it, really love yourself. And I think in relationship you know this happens in sex, right? So people will stay alone in their shame they’re like, “Oh my god I’m not doing it right. I’m…my body this, my sex skills that,” whatever the shame is that they’re in and then you have two people in relationship are sitting there in their shame

Reid: And their shame’s barrels

Amy: not connecting

Reid: Yeah

Amy: Yeah and then they’re feeding each other’s shame or silence because they’re not able

Reid: Yeah

Amy: to address it and then that’s painful because you’re not having the connection that you actually wanna have which is the point usually to begin with.

Reid: Yeah

Amy: So you know and then people go on for years in relationships like that where they’re not connecting, they don’t know what the problem is and they’ve and the shame screens have become so big you know and so like

Reid: screens?

Amy: yes so that’s a concept that Brené Brown talks about you know that we all have these shame screens. We have this way of protecting ourselves around the shame and so there’s the “I’m gonna so there’s the I’m gonna move towards you in my shame”

Reid: Yeah

Amy: like “Okay let me put attention on you, let me try to make things better, let me people please you” you know like as a way of like not dealing with what’s really going on, there’s the “I’m gonna move against you and…and ahh so I’m gonna fight you, I’m gonna make you wrong, I’m gonna make a scene”

Reid: Lash out

Amy: “lash out so that I don’t have to deal with the shame.” And then there’s…what’s the other one? I think it’s…it’s a width and I think about this before but you know so but this idea like

Reid: Brené Brown please come…come tell us

Amy: Brené help us.

Reid: or leave a comment leave a comment

Amy: leave a comment yeah, she’s probably watching. Yeah

Reid: Yeah

Amy: But yeah this idea that like we have these ways of you know it’s a defense, we have these ways of protecting ourselves from feeling that shame too so deeply and yet it’s such an amazing place where we can grow and we do it emotionally, we do it spiritually, we do it sexually, you’re doing it in your business

Reid: Yeah

Amy: professionally

Reid: Yeah and just a quick distinction for those of you who haven’t nerd it out on this yet, the distinction between shame and guilt like shame…guilt is “I did something wrong, I didn’t promote my 3-day event effectively.” Shame is “I’m broken, I’m wrong, I’m a bad person.”

Amy: I’m a bad person

Reid: And again like it’s like how do you…’coz you can forgive somebody for not doing something, you can forgive them like “Oh you made a mistake. I can forgive you” but it’s really hard for somebody to accept forgiveness when…when everything they’re feeling and telling themselves is that they are bad person.

Amy: Right it doesn’t matter how much you forgive them

Reid: Yeah ‘coz you can forgive me but like

Amy: Right.

Reid: you just don’t get it,

Amy: Right.

Reid: you don’t get how bad I am

Amy: Right. How unworthy I am. Yup

Reid: And the only thing that has saved me in the past is I’m a I…I get so nerdy about shame and…and how I know I’m doing it is what I loathe myself and I’m like “Oh loathing this is good.”

Amy: “Oh it’s getting juicy.” [Laughing]

Reid: Yeah. But…but it took me a while to rewire that response and know that…that’s a good thing and it helps it in…in when I’m a having a good day it helps me move forward.

Amy: Yeah

Reid: In a bad day it just crashes me and then I’m…I’m back in my little hole and not you know not wanting to do anything

Amy: Yep

Reid: Any steps for people before my battery runs out if around like when you’re feeling shame or…or what time you use shame and resistance for you?

Amy: Shame and resistance?

Reid: Like I have a block versus I have a shame or maybe it’s a shame block?

Amy: I mean I think the resistance comes up because we don’t want to look at it…either…either we don’t want to acknowledge it, the shame is there and admit it because we think that makes that makes it real clear something’s wrong with us which again is just like the shame all over again.

Reid: Yeah

Amy: It’s like dual layers, multiple layers of shame you know and…and…and sometimes the resistance is “Yeah, I’m just really unwilling to look at myself, I’m…I’m feeling defended, I’m…my shame screens are up.” So you know I mean I think it’s one of like the biggest tasks of adulthood and maturity in relationships to be able to see when those defenses are up and to not let them lead and to just be able to acknowledge them and be like “Oh, I don’t want to be passive-aggressive or I don’t wanna you know be responding to you in this way. I don’t want to be projecting all of my daddy issues on you, I don’t want…” you know like to

Reid: Yeah

Amy: start to see like these are my patterns when I’m feeling insecure or in my shame. Let me try to interrupt that pattern and those can be baby steps it’s like pick one like we’ve all got multiple defenses.

Reid: Yeah

Amy: there are so many defenses there in my book read chapter

Reid: Yeah…yeah…pro…pro…promote your book will put the link on the description

Amy: read the emotion chapter [Laughing]

Reid: Where can they find your book?

Amy: Everywhere books are sold it’s called Woman On Fire

Reid: Woman On Fire

Amy: but it’s good don’t let the title fool you. It…it is…is very helpful of all people of all genders. Woman On Fire nine elements to wake up your erotic energy, personal power, and sexual intelligence and the emotion element is the biggest chapter in the book. There’s still so much more I couldn’t have written but there’s a whole list in there of our defenses and there’s you know I…I talk a lot about how to identify those and then start to interrupt them and sometimes I think it can be over whelming because we’re like “Oh my god” like in groups when I’m teaching this and you know people are like “Ooh!” I’m like stepping in or raising my hand for all of them and then people start to feel shame and feel bad about it. It’s like we all have lots of defenses, we learned those for good reasons to take care of ourselves

Reid: Yeah

Amy: so we could survive…so we could survive our family dynamic whatever was happening for you. So we could acknowledge that and be gentle with ourselves like “Wow, I learned to this for good reason but maybe that’s not how I want to be in my adult relationships.”

Reid: Yeah it’s about choice.

Amy: Maybe that’s not helpful now

Reid: ‘Coz in childhood we don’t have a lot of choice often and then I think one of the things about being an adult is to start tapping into your own agency and using your voice and…and starting to have better boundaries and agreements in your life. Like…like that choice piece that gets removed when we’re kids sometimes because you can’t ride your bike in the street at night and so you…you get told you can’t do that.

Amy: Right

Reid: But now

Amy: and you slam the door and you snap your feet and you’re mad, right?

Reid: Yeah and…and now you can have more choice and you can figure out ways to do it safely, if you want to ride your bike on the street, now the analogy sounds horrible. So where people can find you again?

Amy: https://amyjogoddard.com/  A M Y J O G O D D A R D. You can find me on Facebook, you can find me on Instagram as Sexual Empowerment and you can write me on twitter at @AmyJoGoddard

Reid: Yeah. And then if…if this video talking about the scary stuff resonated for you, I’m doing a Halloween Facebook live where I’m…I’m doing answering scary questions, so go to it’ll the link will be in the description but go to https://reidaboutsex.com/scarysexed. And….and then if you’re interested about my three-day weekend in the first weekend of December that’s happening in Irvine, California in the OC, then if you really wanna help me email me directly at Reid@ReidAboutSex.com  and say “Reid, where is the fuckin information about what is going to be called “High Performance Relationship Mastery?” Like…like because you all asking for it will get me more motivated ‘coz I’ll get stuck in my own ways but I…I will tend to motivate for other people. So if you really feel inspired and you want to keep me in the pants just send me the email directly and that will…that’ll actually get me unstuck in certain ways. So alright everyone, thank you so much leave some emoticons for Amy Jo on our way out and…and we’ll see you tomorrow

Amy: Sexual Evolution

Reid: on Facebook live again.

Amy: Bye.

Reid: Thanks for being a part of this

Amy: Yeah

Reid: This was fun in the backyard [Inaudible 00:15:39]

Amy: Thanks for inviting me. I know.

Reid: Bye everyone.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

suzann April 10, 2021 at 10:03 am

Reaching out, longing for touch — to be in touch!


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