Sex Therapist Casey Tanner and Out & About’s Wayne Carkeek Talk Sex and CBD
Have you ever thought about incorporating CBD into your sex life? Well, you’re not alone. The benefits of sex and CBD might just be one of the world’s best kept secrets but, with CBD Day around the corner, what better time to try than now!
Introducing Out & About, a company with a mission to leverage CBD for the greater wellness of the LGBT community and promote CBD products uniquely suited for their audience. They’re literally coming out with a range of CBD products that can upgrade your pleasure in the bedroom; including a lube, a lavender massage oil, gummies, mints, even an energy drink mix.
We got an exclusive interview with Sex Therapist, Casey Tanner, and Out & About’s Co-Founder, Wayne Carkeek, to hear more about how they’ve incorporated CBD into their sex lives!
Wayne Carkeek: Thank you, Casey for being here. As Co-founder of Out & About, I’m happy we have the chance to talk about what brings CBD and sex therapy together. I was hoping maybe you could just start by describing your practice.
Casey Tanner: Usually, I start with what sex therapy isn’t. I always say: I don’t have sex with my clients, they’re not performing any sex acts in front of me. I think the thing that surprises people is we do talk about sex but it’s actually probably only 10% of the work that we do. We bring our whole selves into the bedroom. Like something bad happens at work earlier in the day, it shows up in one way or another during sex that night. Then, I happen to have a further specialization in the LGBTQ community. There’s sort of this added layer of moving through shame, talking about creative sexuality, and really coming into one’s own in terms of identity.
Wayne: A good place to kind of understand the grasp of sexuality is to understand the spectrum. Could you explain?
Casey: Everyone says: gender is a spectrum; sexuality is a spectrum. I think that the more you learn about sexuality the more spectrums you uncover. We know that gender isn’t binary, so there’s the spectrum from feminine to masculine, and all in-between. I almost picture a graph. Our sexualities are an intersection of like 20 different places, on 20 different spectrums. There’s so much pressure for us to put ourselves in boxes because boxes are neat, and people understand boxes. Even if you don’t put yourself in a box, other people will silo you into one. There’s this pressure, especially in American culture, for people to know themselves fully. Hold your identity with confidence and if you don’t, you don’t know yourself.
Wayne: With the uniqueness of the LGBT community, it seems that we value and are interested in sex a little bit more than heterosexuals. Is that correct?
Casey: I think we certainly have to think about it more than straight people. Straight heterosexual sex is the default right? But if you’re queer, odds are you didn’t get any sex education that had to do with the actual sex that you’re going to have. So, whether or not you have a higher desire for sex I certainly think it can be more at the forefront and that can cause even more anxiety because we’re often self-educating. We’re self-educating ourselves and with our partners in a way that not all straight people have to do.
Wayne: What is the best way to communicate with someone in sex?
Casey: I think assertively, right? Communication ranges from passive, where we’re trying to give people signals based off of body language, based off of facial expression—too aggressive, where we’re making demands, or just being overly aggressive in saying this is what I need, and I need it now. But somewhere in-between passive and aggressive is assertive—where we are just stating as bluntly as we can, these are my yesses, my nose, and my maybes.
Wayne: Do you think that the queer community pushes boundaries on what typical sex is?
Casey: Yeah, totally. I think for folks who do come out we start out our journeys as queer people by pushing boundaries. Like okay, I was taught that like penis goes into vagina. Wait a second in my relationship, those two body parts aren’t there now, I have to expand. The script that I was taught doesn’t work for me so now I have to rewrite it.
Wayne: I know the benefits of the CBD lube that I enjoy, but what benefits do you see in it?
Casey: The number one concern that shows up in my office or with my friends is: I’m anxious. Anxious about performance, about will I orgasm or not, etc. But the thing that we know about healthy sex and good sex is that it flows. Literally. The opening of the blood vessels and the flow of blood into the genitals is what causes sensitivity, the juicy good sensations that we get.
So, here’s what I see as the genius of the CBD lube: it’s got lubricating quality to it. Then you add the CBD to it which increases blood flow and increases sensitivity. That’s why for folks who are anxious, when you’re anxious you also lubricate less, so the CBD lube basically takes care of both all in one.
Wayne: What would you say are some common sexual strengths and weaknesses when having sex with a partner?
Casey: People become disconnected from their bodies when they have the type of sex they don’t want to have. It’s really powerful to be able to actually be in the middle of something and say: “Hey I’m not feeling this today, can we try something else”. That is so huge because what it shows is a Secure Attachment. Willingness to involve things outside of the body is another. A lot of people that are socialized to believe that if we can’t make our partner orgasm with our hands, or tongue, or penetrative sex, then we are failures as partners. The more we can let go of our egos, the more we just expanded our sexual repertoire. And I think the weaknesses are the flip side.
Wayne: When you’re with someone, how are you able to fulfill your own sexual priorities as well as fulfill theirs?
Casey: Some people love sex because it’s de-stressing for them. Other people love sex when they feel really calm and peaceful. Some people like sex to connect, and some people like sex to disconnect. It is okay to have two different priorities, but we have to build up what we call, Distress Tolerance. Depending on the insecurities we’ve brought to the table in that relationship, it may lead somebody to feel unwanted or disconnected. We just have to accept that we do things for different reasons and no value is better or worse than the other. They’re just different.
Wayne: You and I have talked a lot about Desire Discrepancy before. Could you explain?
Casey: Essentially: in a relationship, different members of that relationship have different levels of desire. And what’s so interesting is it’s so rare that members of a couple desire sex the exact same amount anxiety. I think it’s the number one reason that that desire discrepancy happens. Either the person with higher desire has really high anxiety and uses sex to cope, or the person with low desire has really high anxiety which prevents them from getting aroused. This is where I will always recommend CBD, and not just the CBD lube. When you take a couple that is negotiating about whether or not they’re even going to have sex to begin with; we’re not talking about lubrication. We’re talking about managing anxiety and energy on the day-to-day, before sex is even on the table.
Wayne: The most eye-opening thing you have said was: “having good sex is not just turning on the ons, but it’s also turning off the offs”.
Casey: Totally, so we often think about whether somebody is turned on or not. But in reality, we want to find as many things that arouse you but get rid of as many things that don’t arouse you. A turn on might be your partner giving you a massage with CBD oil, but the dishes being dirty in the other room is a turn off. As our brain decides whether or not we’re going to want to have sex, it’s looking for the ons but it’s also looking for the offs. So, foreplay isn’t just pulling our partner towards sex, it’s pulling them away from the things that stress them out, that made them feel unsexy. So, we have to look at it from both angles.
Wayne: As soon as you said that, I went through a tunnel into my history of events where that spoke so truly to. And through our conversations I’ve learned so much about the things I’ve done in my past, sexually. So, thank you very much for your time. I really appreciate it.
Casey: Yeah, of course. And have better sex!
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