Chantelle Otten: “We Need to Talk About Sex From an Unfiltered Perspective”

chantelle otten sexologist

On an earlier episode of POPSUGAR’s Love Rants, host Melissa Mason sat down with Chanel Contos and discussed how basic, biased, and ultimately unhelpful school-taught sex education has been in Australia, specifically for women. Women have historically been told to not talk about sex, and aren’t explicitly taught to enjoy it. So, what are young Aussie women supposed to do when they experience pain during sex?

Chantelle Otten, arguably Australia’s most well-known sexologist, has long been on a mission to eliminate the shame and stigma when talking about problems like this. Otten offers therapy and advice — and sex education for adults — that is helping normalise these conversations among ourselves and our peers. Her book, The Sex Ed You Never Had, is all giving readers knowledge that’s both empowering and without shame. But, stigmas aren’t erased overnight.

So, on this week’s episode of POPSUGAR’s Love Rants, Otten joins Mason to discuss why some of us experience this pain and discomfort during sex, what are the solutions, and how they can bring it up with those we’re intimate with.

Chantelle Otten on How to Handle (and Talk About) Pain During Sex

According to Otten, “One in three vulva owners will experience pain at some point in their lives, and… it might be upon penetration.”

She says the pain can feel like a razor blade, a burning or stinging, and even just tightness and discomfort. But, while experiencing pain isn’t often talked about, nor are the actual solutions, even for those who are meant to help.

“There just hasn’t been enough education for professionals who are meant to be also treating these concerns.,” Otten says.

“I’ve had so many patients coming in who’ve been told, ‘Just, you know, like have a glass of wine, you’ll be fine and relax a little bit more.”

But what advice does Otten have if you want to address your pain and discomfort with a sexual partner or whoever you’re in a long-term relationship with?

“I think the hardest thing or the hardest person to talk to about your sexual life is actually your partner,” she says.

“That’s why working with the sexologist when you do have sexual pain is really important because we can often bring the partner in. Even if it’s a casual hookup, we can teach you how to discuss these concerns with someone who you’re seeing. You’ll be able to say, ‘Well, actually, I can do a whole heap of things. I’m just struggling with this certain aspect of my sexual life’.”

Listen to Chantelles full episode of Love Rants above, or wherever you get your podcasts.


Related Posts
Latest Living
The End.

The next story, coming up!