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Satisfying Sexuality

Developing more satisfying personal expressions of sexuality

Susan M. Mumm, MA

This article is derived from a lecture I did on CTN, the community cable television station, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It was part of a series called “Asking New Questions, Finding New Answers-- Contemporary Issues in Psychology.” I am a licensed professional counselor in the Ann Arbor metro area, and enjoy presenting lectures on issues that people tend to seek counseling about. Sexuality is, without a doubt, one of those issues.

Being a mental health professional is a challenge sometimes. It is sometimes difficult to try and offer opinions, without coming off as having an “I am an expert and know all the answers” kind of attitude. In regards to sexuality in particular, I at times ask myself; “Do I really have any right trying to define what “good sex” and “bad sex” is? Isn’t that always a personal determination? To some degree, it is personal, but I have come to believe that, in fact, there does seem to be some universal wisdom that can be taught about sexuality. I don’t claim to have the “be all” and “end all” answers about sexuality, if I did, I’d be a much more famous (and richer) author than I am. However, I do think I’ve accumulated some valuable insights which I will outline in this article.

I have interviewed men and women of all ages, from many different walks of life for over thirty years. I had a lot of curiosity about the topic of sexuality long before I was a professional counselor. I was always eager to engage any willing person in conversation about sex. What I discovered again and again from my discussions with people, is that a substantial number of people are not as satisfied with their sex lives as they would like to be and some people will even openly admit to being downright unhappy with their sex lives. So I’m hoping I can offer some wisdom to help people develop more satisfying expressions of their sexuality.

I think it makes sense to start this discussion with a brief historical summary. The concept of “Satisfying Sexuality” is a relatively new concept for humanity. In centuries past, people did not spend much time and energy discussing their various options for sexual/romantic relationships and encounters. Peoples’ freedom to explore sexuality was extremely limited for a number of reasons.

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