Adesuwa Ewoigbokhan: Unmasking sex
By Jemi Ekunkunbor
She is a product of the prestigious St Maria Goretti Girls Grammar School, Benin city. She also holds a degree in History from the Edo State University, Ekpoma and an MBA from the University of Benin. She worked briefly with Delta Broadcasting Station and later ran her own business but each move brought no clear cut satisfaction. In a bid to truly discover herself, and do something for women, she went to Salem Pastoral and Management College, at Salem Church Lekki, Lagos were she studied Theology and Pastoral Management. Still not satisfied, she went for short coaching courses, first in neurolingistics and later life coaching training. It was at the tail end of her programme, that she discovered what she was looking for all these years- sex!
Today, the mother of three and a certified sex coach, talks frankly about sex in a manner many would not dare to speak. Her story and counsel is compelling. Enjoy.
Why did you think sex talk was what you were yearning for all these years of taking different courses?
Well, I’ve always desired to help women. As a young girl, I suffered because of the behaviour of some men. This is the reason; as a growing teenager, I developed faster than my age mates in terms of my physical features and that used to draw undue attention from men; some old enough to be my grandfather. But thank God I knew God at that age and that acted like a guide for me. However, that undue attention made me develop a low self esteem by the time I entered the University. I was always self conscious that all men wanted from me, was to sleep with me because I am busty. But when I got to the university and started reading magazines, I got to know about a woman called Yemi Fawaz. She gave me my first confidence. She used to say in those days that you flaunt what you’ve got. For once, I saw the other side. Instead of becoming shy and having low self esteem, it became a bonus for me. Having gone through this kind of experience, it has always been my desire to help other girls or women who are dealing with issues like that. I try to reach out to others who find themselves in this kind of situation, who could end badly if they fall into the hands of those old men not knowing that after sex, there is nothing more for those who are not married. And you know that in this part of the world, sex is not something you can discuss freely. It is like a taboo. So you can imagine what some young girls are going through. Who would you talk to? Growing up, all the sex talk you heard at least in my own case which I believe applies to many young girls, is that when you have your first menstrual experience, you are handed sanitary towels and asked to stay away from men or else you’d get pregnant. That is where it ends. Nobody tells you anything. And if you are told anything at all, sometimes, it makes you hate sex completely.
What can a 13-14 year old do to save herself from the prying eyes of men so that her self esteem is not crushed at that age?
Let me say here that sometimes, these older men are not just outsiders, some are uncles and close family members. At this stage of the girls life, it is the responsibility of the parents to get her trained, have a proper talk with your daughter. Thank God for modern schools that try to teach these things now. My daughter was taught at school in grade 5 and when she came home, I enlightened her more. Now that she is in secondary school, there is nothing you can tell her that she doesn’t know. So to answer your question, parents need to give them necessary information, prepare them. We didn’t have that advantage. Children can Google things to read with the supervision of their parents so that they don’t read it for other purposes. Let them know that there is nothing wrong with learning about sex, the only thing is to keep yourself pure from it.
Apart from being a Christian at an early age, I also used to ask myself, what is it that this man or boy wants to give to me? Is it chocolate? I am the only child of my mother, even though we were not rich, but all my needs were met. I got everything I wanted and even if I didn’t get it immediately, my mother would give me a time frame for her to get it for me. So I always tell my daughter that what is it that that boy wants to give to you? Mummy can give you so, don’t fall for for guys because of those little gifts. Also, let them know that whatever they choose to do especially with sex, they will take responsibility for their actions.
How can a young girl address those “uncles” who look at her lustfully?
At every point we should try and build the self esteem of our daughters. Build their confidence, make them your friend so that they can confide in you. In my case I couldn’t tell anybody because I grew up with my granny. What happened was that I became shy and withdrawn. I couldn’t tell anybody until I met my husband. But that shouldn’t be the case. In the case of the family member who harassed me, I didn’t want to cause any family problem. But what I tell my children now is, if anybody harassed them especially a family member or friend, they should mention the persons name. I also tell them not to sit on any man’s laps. But mothers now don’t have time. Most things are left in the hands of house helps and nannies and they are even the ones committing all the crimes against children. So build self confidence in the child so that even when you are not there, they will be able to handle the situation.
society does not like you talking about sex even though it is taking place almost everywhere. How do we address this culture of silence?
That is not so any more. We are shouting it now, talking about it and learning new things about our bodies and sex. In the church, they tell them you must be a virgin, it is good because if you do not play around and you get married, you won’t have anything to compare your husband or wife with, you’d work with what you have. But when you have experimented too much, you begin to compare and this can create problems.
What are the likely problems that a couple will have when one partner who is over exposed to sex, meets with a partner who is more reserved and conservative?
What we advise is that the one who is more exposed will have to calm down and be gentle and patient with his or her partner who does not know much. Try and build her up, let her know you love her and help her around the house and build self esteem into her. With time, she will get to your level. Sex is good for everybody. It’s only if you’ve not tried it that you will say it is bad. The man has to be patient. But if it’s the woman, allow the man to lead in the bedroom. Don’t kill his self esteem or confidence because, some men are shy. When he has done all he knows, you can then introduce something new that can help.
What are the likely things that can crack a marriage in this regard?
Sex is a major problem. A lot of marriages are crashing and when it borders on irreconcilable differences on sex, they will not come out to say why the marriage broke down.
Sex is a mutual activity between husband and wife. It’s supposed to happen within a marriage setting. The bible says that it is not good that a man should be alone. Sex is one of the best gift that God gave to us. For us to avoid what you just asked, effective communication is very important. Tell the man or woman what you want. No man is a mind reader. Most people are afraid to take initiative because they don’t want to be branded as loose. The truth is, to have a good marriage, there has to be good sex. Sex is a need that needs to be met. Once a couple realises this, then you can do anything with your spouse within that boundary of marriage. If you don’t give him or her what he or she desires, somebody outside will do it and problem starts will start. That’s when you see the man starts coming home late.
Again, you find that during courtship, a woman takes her time to dress up and look good. Now that she is married, what does she do? You come home and meet her with wrapper tied around her chest and hair net on her head; that will put a man off. Most men are moved by what they see and sex is starts from the mental. So, you make yourself presentable.
Is it always a woman’s fault? Shouldn’t the man be concerned about her well being?
It is not always a woman’s fault but she stands to lose more because, he will go out when he is dissatisfied; but the woman can’t do same. She will look at the society and what people will say.
Yes, the man should be concerned about her well being as well. That is why there is foreplay before the real deal. But the problem is that most women can’t even say what they want. Women are too shy. And this is killing marriages. If people can have good relationships, the society will benefit from it and couples will be more productive. But when there is no sex, there will be problems. An average man thinks of sex 19 times in a day much more than food. If you give him sex, he will forget that food, give him sex, he will sign that cheque. So we are the one losing. So to have a good sexual relationship, tell him what you want. If a man does the right things, play around before time, we are too uptight. And the truth is that a good sex makes one younger, high blood pressure will not be a problem and, you will not have need for all those chemicalized anti ageing creams. The women need to be worked on.
What can the men do to help the women?
Start the talk from outside the bedroom. Learn to listen to her. Be gentle, be patient. Say nice things to her. Send flirty text messages, use the social media. When she gets your messages, something will happen inside of her, by the time you come home, she is almost ready for you.
As a sex Coach, what are the issues you face during counselling?
Sometimes, people don’t come out to tell the truth about their situation so that you’d properly guide them. Instead, they will tell you other people’s story and later come out to say that the coach did not help them well. And the women are too shy to talk. But the answer to their problems lie within them.
Does pornography interfere with the natural flow of things?
In counselling, I deal with Christians and none Christians. Christians will tell you outright that pornography is not right. But as a Counsellor, I take a neutral position.
Instead of pornography, certain kinds of music can help and certain kinds of outfits can also help you. You don’t have to watch pornographic films. Find what works for you.
What about the nutty issues of circumcision that makes some women frigid?
The truth is that a circumcised person also enjoys sex. If I am to go by what my parents told me, I was circumcised twice. And I don’t have a problem with sex or its enjoyment. But we are not all the same. You see somebody that is not circumcised telling you that she does not enjoy sex, it’s all about the mind set. If you don’t enjoy sex, what is it that you have to do? That is where communication comes in because you are the one that can help yourself to get optimum sexual satisfaction. And if you have a good self esteem about your sexuality, you’d be able to like your partner and to bring spark back into your marriage. Circumcision is not an obstacle. And even when your circumcision is the chronic type, there are things that you can do to help yourself.
Would you encourage circumcision?
Not at all. I didn’t circumcise my children. Circumcision has done more harm than good.