Venus Libido on Endometriosis, Pleasure, and Self-Exploration
Name: Venus Libido
Day job: Sex Educator and training Psychosexual and Relationship Therapist
I hold a degree in fine art, yet in 2018, I embarked on a transformative journey into sexual wellness and sex education. My fascination extended beyond my sexuality; it encompassed the intricate dynamics of how society, relationships and personal growth influence our journey of sexual exploration. This led me to my current journey: coaching and training as a psychosexual and relationship therapist.
What I find most rewarding is helping individuals and couples steer towards healthier, more joyful and more satisfying lives within the sphere of sexuality and relationships—whether that involves self-discovery or connecting with others. This work is an opportunity to leave a positive imprint on people's lives, enabling them to gain a profound understanding of themselves and their bodies. It empowers them to embrace the pursuit of pleasure without the burden of shame and a journey of self-exploration that I feel everyone deserves.
Pleasure mapping involves open curiosity, exploration and body awareness. It's the process of identifying and understanding one's own sources of pleasure, desire, and arousal. My step-by-step guide for this is:
Self-exploration first, communication and lube!
My symptoms then and now are similar, primarily characterized by persistent lower pelvic pain, back discomfort, pain experienced both during and after intercourse, leg pain, and discomfort in the rectal area. I have also noticed that all the above significantly impacted my mental health over the years and, at times, caused me great anxiety when it came to leaving the house.
Unfortunately, these symptoms tend to alleviate for only approximately six months following surgery before resurfacing again. I have undergone two surgeries, yet the outcomes have remained consistent on both occasions. I experience fluctuations between good and bad days, with the unfortunate aspect being their unpredictable nature, which has sometimes caused me distress.
I do not currently take medication for my pain, but what works for me is learning how to work with my body. I know I can manage my symptoms by focusing on regular exercise, diet, self-care and prioritising myself when pain is at its worst.
Masturbation, rest and regular movement.
It’s crucial to identify your individual triggers. I maintained a food diary for three months to pinpoint my own triggers, which, in my case, include avoiding dairy, white bread, rice, beer, and coffee.
I highly recommend reading the book "Take Control of Your Endometriosis" if you wish to gain a deeper understanding of how nutrition can impact Endometriosis.
For years, I found myself caught in a perplexing dilemma between wanting to delve into my sexuality and withdrawing from intimate experiences, relationships and even self-care as my frustration and irritation grew due to the sensation of my body feeling somehow flawed or broken. My only saving grace is I never gave up on myself. I wanted to keep exploring and figure out what my body wanted, needed and desired, focusing on pleasure rather than performance. I also often remind myself that I should never feel like I have to miss out on pleasure regardless of pain.
Unfortunately, discomfort is unavoidable for some, so I always suggest two things instead of trying to have a pain-free experience.