Interview: Ljubov Dzhuzhynska
Photo: Alexander Prischepov
Tell us about your first memory of sex.
I’ve discovered my clitoris at quite a young age and I remember how I was actively using it throughout my childhood. I don’t know if the adults noticed it, but no one ever said anything to me. At the age of 10 I came across some literature on child sexology, so the whole aspect of ‘what, where, why’ became more or less understandable. And afterwards came 6 years of anticipation before having my first sex experience.
We were raised by an old-fashioned generation that is full of prejudices towards sex and sexual education. How did you manage to go against such an influence?
I’m a rebel by nature – I like to shock people and watch them react. Of course, one can say that I lack attention and that’s my way of drawing people towards myself. And yes! I fucking love attention, so why not combine it with the opportunity to say important things.
When was the first time you spoke about sex publicly and what made you do it in the first place?
It was by accident. Before starting my blog about sex, I ran a blog about motherhood, strolls around Moscow and delicious food. It was my way of socializing while I was on maternity leave. After a while I’ve gained interest in studying sex, and in a couple of months I’ve discovered so many new things that I simply couldn’t keep it all to myself. I wanted to see all my friends while holding a sign that said “would you like to discuss the vaginal orgasm?”. So a friend of mine suggested that I start a blog about it and shared some ideas on how to monetize it. I’ve decided to take a leap and go for it. Sex is something that I am best at, so why not educate others.
Do you have a constant dialogue with your subscribers? Is it difficult psychologically?
Oh yeah! But lately, I feel like I’m starting to emotionally burn out. I really want to help everyone and I often let these stories go through me. Some things in these stories are very sad, like experiences of abusive partners or abusive parents. Now I dream of going on holiday for a week or two. Somewhere with no internet connection, no phone, and not a single book with the word ‘sex’ in it. I’ll take a little break and then get back to business.
What are your most common FAQs?
“How to get an orgasm? I don’t have a vaginal orgasm, does this make me normal? What sex toy should I get first? Open marriage?! What is that? Don’t you get jealous?”
What is your personal definition of sex?
Sex is a way of studying oneself through the help of other people – it’s a way of communicating through bodies.
Tell us about the most common misconceptions and myths surrounding sex.
The most common myth is that during sex with a partner the lady must experience a vaginal orgasm. If she doesn’t then something is terribly wrong with her. And you know, the presence of a vaginal orgasm is a so-so indicator of you as a woman. I think a lot of women want to experience the vaginal orgasm not for the sake of personal pleasure, but merely to amuse the male ego – ‘oh look what I can do’ sort of thing.
And Freud is the one to blame for it, he suggested that the clitoral orgasm is ‘immature and childish’ and that over time it should transform into a ‘mature’ vaginal orgasm and that it should work as an analogy to the male orgasm – through penetration. But we can forgive Freud, back then no one knew anything about the anatomy of the clitoris. Humankind discovered that the clitoris is a fully developed organ, and not just a tiny tubercle, only in 1998. And only in the past few years people started talking about it.
So does the vaginal orgasm exist after all?
Yes and no. What we used to call a vaginal orgasm, in fact is the same thing as a clitoral orgasm, only it’s obtained during frictions. It’s all about the woman’s physiology, some women have a very sensitive front wall of the vagina by nature, and the clitoris is located close to the entrance. The combination of these factors give a quick and strong orgasm when penetrated. But if the vagina is less sensitive then the head of the clitoris is their main source of orgasm.
One can learn the vaginal orgasm through various techniques, but don’t expect it to be something over the roof. You can’t out-jump your physiology. If the clitoral orgasm is a bright and strong flash, then the vaginal orgasm is rather like soft waves that pleasantly spread through your the body. I would really like it for people to stop focusing on the fact that orgasms should only reached during penetrative sex. People should enjoy orgasms in all ways possible. By the way, did you know that the clitoris is the only organ with a sole purpose and task is receiving pleasure?
Is squirting a myth or a reality?
Squirting became trendy in the past couple of years. Anal sex used to be the cherry on top, but now it’s normal to ask “and do you squirt” on the first date. It does exist and it’s not even rare. I know a lot of women who can experience squirting, and if you ask a squirtologist (yes, that also exists), who does this as a job, then 95% of women can squirt. I went to see him and I can assure you that it works.
Squirt is all about a little skill. But it’s the case when your partner is more responsible for the squirt than you are. Squirt requires a certain physiological inclination and skillful hands. It’s difficult to achieve at home, because not every partner is willing to massage you for an hour in order to direct you towards the right wave. Squirting is all about the right technique, but it only works if accompanied by strong excitement and relaxation. But if you can’t relax, if you don’t trust your partner or you’re not horny – nothing will come out of it.
You’ve mentioned that you are a sexually positive person. Why do you think some are sexually negative?
Because it’s frightening for some to get out of their shell filled with stereotypes and unresolved personal issues. It’s easier to slut shame while hiding in the bushes. That’s that meme analogy.
What are the two types of people?
Dipshits and non-dipshits. Just kidding. I can’t think of an answer that would be uncensored.
How will you educate your child on the topic of sex?
I will openly answer all of her questions at any given age. There will always be a condom vase at our house, which she can take whenever she pleases. I will also get my daughter a vibrator and tell her why it’s better than sex with a miscellaneous partner. I’ll also get her a menstrual cup, which would really ease up my life back in the day.
Why is it so important to get a proper sexual education and what are the downfalls of getting a bad one?
I can go on about like a school teacher discussing STDs and unwanted pregnancies, but I hope everyone is aware of that already. Sex education provides an understanding that there is no taboo in sex and nothing is prohibited if both partners mutually consented. I would focus extra attention on LGBT +, so that people would understand that it’s normal to be different from normal – you will be understood and supported. I recently conducted a survey about what kind of sexual education people received throughout their lives, and I’ve read such nonsense! Kids would be better off without their parents telling them anything at all, in that sense. As a result of this, we have so many broken and frightened girls who can’t build relationships, because of the abusive parenting they had to deal with when growing up.
What does your daughter teach you?
She teaches me to talk a lot, to speak out my emotions, to explain my actions and to find mutual grounds with people. Hopefully, this will help develop her emotional intellect and in the future she will easily voice her concerns and emotions, and that I believe is the secret of a healthy relationship. But currently she is a insufferable three-year old who wants to scream all the time because the dress is not quite the right colour.
What are the most amusing and unexpected places where you had sex?
Oh I’m boring. My husband and I lived in a one bedroom apartment with our daughter for quite a while so the only place where we could have sex was the kitchen, bathroom and balcony. I got so tired in that period that nothing beats the simple comfort of a bed. But I’ve had sex on the beach, in the forest, in the car, and in sex hotels.
What is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen in your life?
This year I fell in love with Amsterdam and Venice. I haven’t witnessed such beauty in a long while – it’s a visual orgasm.
If you could choose just one type of sex, what would it be?
Tantra. You can transcend into open space without even genitalia contact.
If you had to choose between sex with a man and all your sex toys, what would you choose?
But wait, if I say no to either of those, I can still have sex with women haha. But this is me being fussy. Of course, no sex toys will compare to human contact. But if I had to choose between genders then it would take a while for me to decide, because having a penis or a vagina says nothing about a person, but having a brain says a lot.
Tell us a funny or awkward story from your sexual experiences.
Recently, I’ve decided to surprise my husband and ‘gift’ him a woman. A good friend of ours came over, and we thought that it would be a great idea to hide her in the wardrobe, butt-naked, covered in a festive bow. But as it happened, my husband came home from work very tired, so when he opened the door, he jumped away and was terrified. It looked like a jump of a graceful doe. Thankfully, he doesn’t have the instinctive defense reaction, otherwise our unicorn would be quite unfortunate. I no longer plan surprises.
Is sex merely a physiological need?
I really love delicious food, so every time I have a meal, it’s not just a necessity to fulfill hunger, but it’s also a way to taste food, to try something new. But sometimes I notice how other people approach food and for them it’s simply a task to get rid of hunger, it’s a purely a physical need. The same algorithm works with sex. It’s definitely a gourmet for me, it’s a way to taste and try a person in all possible ways. It’s another way of communication – the most pleasant way of all, in fact.
Does the availability of porn shift the sexual drive of people? Are there any specific difficulties that you would like to note on? Do you think that porn creates problems of intimacy and alienation for people in the real world?
After watching Erica Lust’s films I simply cannot watch ordinary porn anymore. The unethical attitude towards women is irritating and the whole thing is so unrealistic: partners go for uncomfortable poses in order to look good on camera, the ladies swallow 30cm penises and don’t even flinch, and in anal sex all one has to do is spit and it’s a done deal. Where is the awkwardness of putting on the condom? Where is the lube, that one cannot find in the right moment, and what should one do if an erection is gone? Porn actors seem to have an erection 24/7. I, for example, thought for a very long while that sex without penetration is not even sex. But for real, it would be so much better if porn showed the prelude more often, the caresses, other types of sex that exclude penetration. It’s all just a permanent mechanism of the Woody Woodpecker.
When there is no normal sexual education (and in our country* it’s non-existent) and porn acts as the only visual manual, then this leads to a bunch of myths and misunderstandings in the matters of sex. Porn is a great thing, but it would be great if all these videos started with a text line that said “done by professional porn actors, so don’t repeat at home!”.
* I don’t know how things are in Ukraine with this, but everything is bad in Russia. On the day of ‘Fighting AIDS’ in schools, teachers were asked not to pronounce the word “condom”, which is just one thing among the endless bullshit. And overall in schools there is no sexual education, and parents don’t educate their kids either.
What is the difference between male and female perceptions of sex?
I think there is no difference really. There are imposed stereotypes, the ones like ‘women don’t need sex’, ‘men only care about one thing’, ‘you can have sex only after 5 dates’. If we throw these stereotypes away then we desire sex equally, and we also feel bad when we don’t have it in the same way. Neither men nor women are used to speak out about their true feelings and desires. I often laugh that if people would actually talk to one another about sex freely, then I would be out of work.
There is this belief that sex with the same person gets boring over time. What do you think about this? Is it possible to keep the relationship monogamous?
I can’t imagine a monogamous relationship for myself. For me, it’s the equivalent of eating the same food over and over again for the rest of your life. You can do that in terms of survival, but what if you have the option not to? Nevertheless, I know a lot of couples that manage to keep the passion alive throughout life. It’s just as surprising to me, as is my polyamory to them.
Name some books, films or TV series that in your opinion are vital for sexual education and development.
A must read is Naomi Wolf’s “Vagina: A New Biography” and “The Sex Nerd on What Women Want” by Emily Nagoski. Women should read those in order to accept themselves and men should read those in order to understand the mechanisms of a female body. In terms of films, I would suggest Erica Lust and her so-called ‘ethical’ and ‘feminist’ porn. The films portray and pay a lot of attention to female pleasure. The men are beautiful, the women are not ‘perfect’ and are all shapes, races and have different sexual desires. The series xConfessions is filmed based on real life fantasies of Erica’s fans. It’s truly the best porn that I’ve laid my eyes on and it’s impossible to watch ordinary porn afterwards. By the way, a lot of my subscribers now watch it, even though a lot of ladies were very negative towards porn, but they’ve had a change of heart after watching these films.
What are you trying to convey to humanity with your work?
I want girls to stop being ashamed and scared of their own bodies, I want them to understand how their bodies work and that sex is a vital and natural part of life, where you are allowed to do anything you want if it’s not forbidden by the law.
What’s wrong with the modern world?
Before, I used to be irritated by how sex is approached by post-soviet countries, but now I’m angry that all the huge corporations like Facebook and Instagram periodically ban my publications, despite the fact that they follow all regulations. Truth be told, there is not a single social network where one can freely talk about sex. It’s a pain in the ass for everyone who is in someway connected to the sex industry. And I’m not talking about escort services or anything in that matter. I’m talking about people like me, people who shed light and knowledge on sex matters, they write books, give lectures, but it’s all under the controlling eye of the big brother. One wrong move and you’re banned, and all your work is gone.
What’s it like to be you?
There should be an option “It’s complicated” that I could tick haha. But can anyone say anything other than this about themselves? For the first time in many years I am truly happy and I enjoy the thing that I do. So despite any difficulties I face – it’s fucking awesome to be me.
What question would you want to be asked at an interview and what would your answer be?
I often get asked what my parents think. When I told my grandmother, she asked: “Do your parents know? Is your husband ok with it?”. Apparently it’s a defense mechanism to something that is difficult to comprehend. It’s easier with my parents, they’re being great and understanding, they’re very supportive of what I do. I recently told my mom that I run a sex blog and that I plan to become a sexologist in the future. Mom laughed and said: “Geology and sexology are quite close, both are deep”. What’s funny about it is the fact that I’m a land surveyor with my first education, but if you generalize the field – I’m a geologist.
Translation: Elena Savlokhova