Dickinson Gives The Talk


courtesy of Sarah Mash ’25

How did you learn about sex?

For Sex Therapist Dr. Lexx Brown-James, it was with pieces of red and blue paper glued together and torn apart. “That’s what sex is,” she was told.

Dr. Brown-James came to Dickinson to talk to students as a part of Love Your Body Week. She identifies as “Black, Fat [and] Pan,” she has a Ed.D. and Master’s in Human Sexuality, a masters in Marriage and Family Therapy/Counseling and an undergraduate degree in Physics.

In 2018, she wrote the book “These are My Eyes, This is My Nose, This is My Vulva, These are My Toes” to encourage young children to learn about all parts of bodies. In the coming year she will take over as the President of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT).

Brown-James began the Pleasurable Sex Salon with students naming every word they could think of for the words “vulva” and “penis.” Some of the most unexpected synonyms for these words she has come across, she says, have been “Honey dripper,” “ax wound” and “Purple helmeted caped crusader.”

“Why do we have this many words?” she asked students, and why could they come up with more words for penis then for vulva. The simple answer? We live in a patriarchal society that shames women who have, and talk freely about, sex, she said.

 Brown-James went on to highlight that Viagra is covered by health insurance but not all birth control is covered. She also added that “The fun thing about the clitoris is that it disappears from textbooks every couple years.” 

She discussed the “Pleasure gap” between different genders and sexualities. According to Brown-James, straight men orgasm the most at over 95% of the time, while for straight women, “if you had sex ten times, if you identify as a straight woman, you might come six times.” She went on to inform people that there are 13 types of orgasms a person can have (she could only remember nine at that moment: vaginal, cervical, prostate, nipple, kissing, anal, le petit mort, A spot — between end of vaginal canal and cervix, and U spot — around the urethra).

Some students were shocked to find out that 76% of people with a clitoris need to have it stimulated to reach an orgasm, and that there are 20,000 nerve endings in the clitoris. Moreover, said Brown-James, the sexual libido of people who have penises tends to begin to die out between the ages of 28 and 32 years old, and their erections decrease in firmness around that time. 

Throughout the talk she included several pieces of educational advice, such as: “If it burns when you pee then you have microtears,” “If you are sleeping with someone that does not care about your pleasure stop f— them!” “typically most pleasurable part of the penis is the underside”, “pee after sexual intercourse”, “take all your pills if you got an STD or a UTI,” “Use lube. Water based,” and finally, “don’t use porous sex toys.”

Dr. Brown-James ended her discussion with a reminder to students to use their privilege to aid in the destigmatization of sex.