DR. HOOK- Get familiar: Women: know your body
Sex and The City put women's sexuality on the map. Or did it? They touched just about every sexual topic that exists for women, and yet they left us wanting to watch more. However, according to my female friends, women just don't talk that openly with each other about sex. Really? I thought Tupperware parties were just an excuse for women to get together and unseal their containers.
I guess women don't want to reveal their ideas or questions about sex. But if that's true, why do they all ask me sex questions? (Dr. Ruth, eat your heart out!)
When I worked a year in DC, I had to report about male and female sexual dysfunction at the weekly rounds. One of my colleagues begged me to please not embarrass him in front of all the medical residents. I looked at him in disbelief because he was the most non-sexual, depressing person in the world, so why would I bring him up? Oh, wait, now I see his point.
Anyway, there was a ton of literature on male sexuality to the point of suffocation. On the other hand, for female sexuality, you could write down all the information on a square of toilet paper— one ply.
I ask my patients about sexual issues, and one question pertains to orgasm. And I'm not surprised by how many women are not able to climax during sex. In one Sex and The City scenes, Miranda had to teach an ophthalmologist about the female anatomy, because he must have fallen asleep in medical school during that lecture. Unfortunately most men don't ask or want to know what they can do to improve things, and most women don't want to bring it up.
So I encourage women to become familiar with their bodies and find what works best for them. For some, they take notes, do their homework, and come back with an A+. For others, they cringe, crawl around the subject, and make faces at me as if I were Caligula.
"Ew, Dr. Hong, that's disgusting. I can't bare to check things out south of the Mason-Dixon line. I don't even travel to South Carolina."
It's amazing to me to see how many women find their own body parts to be unappealing. C'mon! The female anatomical parts sound like flowers in a Japanese garden. They aren't odd or disgusting. Yet, I have quite a few women who just won't do their homework.
You might ask what this "homework" is. As you might know, I type out an instruction sheet for all my patients. So I simply incorporate the sexual issues within the rest of the stuff.
"Your tetanus shot is due next year. Your mammogram is due next month. Your blood pressure is 110/70, which is perfect. Go to the sex store, get blah blah blah, play some Barry White music... And come fasting on your next visit so we can check your cholesterol."
Don't think I'm insane. I do the same for men with erectile dysfunction or other sexual issues. Speaking of ED, remember in Sex and The City when Samantha was using Viagra? Well according to urban legend, some women have been "followers of Samantha" with good results. (I still find in interesting insurance won't pay for many blood pressure medicines but will pay for erectile dysfunction medicines. Oh, that's right; it's hardly necessary.)
Sue Johanson, the Canadian RN who had a sex talk show, constantly told women to get over their fears of sexuality and their own sexual parts. And she is 70 years old! I think she should be in the Sex and The City movie. The problem is Samantha would respond to everything with, "Been there! Done that!"
How anti-climatic that would be.
Dr. Hook cracks a joke or two, but he's a renowned physician with a local practice. Email him with your questions.