I often wonder, are women ready to talk about sexual health the way they so easily slip into conversation about other areas of wellness like oil pulling and the must-download meditation app? Last night over dinner at a New York City Fundraiser, a woman at my table, upon me explaining what I do, said to me, “Yeah, I mean my friend called me up yesterday, she’s going through a breakup, and I asked her what she was doing tonight and she said, ‘Eating and masturbating!’” This woman, as many women I meet do, vented to me about how she wished women could just be more honest and open when it came to sex. I couldn’t agree more, and after last week, I think things are moving in the right direction.
I, like I suspect every almost-30-something woman, spend my Saturday mornings binge watching Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin on the Netflix hit show Grace & Frankie. What do I have in common with two 70-something recently divorced women you might wonder? The answer is: A lot. In the show, an incredibly hilarious feminist comedy, Lily Tomlin plays an up-and-coming organic lubricant entrepreneur and Jane Fonda, her roommate and also ex-wife of her ex-husband's now husband, is in the works to develop a vibrator for women with arthritis. Basically, they are my spirit animals. After finishing the second season of the show last weekend, I was like damn, if these two women can get Netflix to write a show about lubricant entrepreneurism, there is no question that sexual health is IN.
But then it got better. The morning after I finished season two, Goop’s weekly email popped up in my inbox: “The Sex Issue.” Wait, what?! I open the email to find out that Gwyneth Paltrow and I have so much more in common than I thought previously. Not only are we both diehard Grace & Frankie fans but we also both love organic lube?? I had to be dreaming.
Don’t get me wrong, I fully think it’s damn well time that women everywhere say YES to talking about their sexual health, but as a young woman running a condom company for the past two years, to say I saw this moment coming (at least this quickly...oh God, too many puns) is an understatement. I think what was also really critical about these movements was that, yes there have been the Lenas, Amys and Broad City girls (thank God for all of them) talking about sex in public forums for a while now, but we’ve always had to use comedy to try and break down the taboo of women and sex in order for it to be talked about. Now that’s all changing. We can be sexual, we can have serious conversations about what’s going inside us, and we can also start sexual product businesses.
So go ahead, talk about your sexual health (possibly while watching Grace & Frankie), what are you waiting for?