World-renowned sexpert Tristan Taormino spoke to University students about how to improve their sexual experiences. She discussed topics such as masturbation, orgasms, sex toys, anal sex and more in an event open to the public and hosted by FLAG&BT, with the help of the Women’s Resource Center and Dean of Students Susan Lantz.
Taormino focused on how to bring pleasure to sexual encounters, and her talk took account for different gender and sexual orientations. Taormino looked to bring sex into a positive and healthy light.
“I think the subject material of the lecture is generally shocking to a lot of people, but I think Tristan handled it with grace and humor,” Lindsay Allardyce ’14, one of the leading organizers of the event, said.
The lecture was interactive, comprised of explanations of anatomy, as well as fun facts, myths and truths. She also had a trivia section and winning students won prizes.
“I really enjoyed the event because Tristan was so open about sex,” Maddie Pucciarello ’14 said.
“In part, the success is gauged by the attendance, but it’s also gauged by the audience reaction to Tristan,” Sam Lauer ’13 said. “She was captivating, funny, honest (sometimes brutally) and engaging. She kept us on our toes and provided us the sex education we should have been receiving since elementary school.”
Many students were open to volunteering, which helped the audience members learn more and have fun at the same time.
“The most interesting part was probably the anonymous Q&A section,” Allardyce said. “She passed out note cards and students wrote down questions they had about sex. It was also really cool how many people felt they could finally ask a question about sex that they had never asked before and get a real answer. Also, no one felt alone because everyone really wanted these questions answered.”
Allardyce, vice president, and Lauer, the diversity master, represented FLAG&BT and co-organized the event.
“I wanted to organize this event because I have seen some of the unhealthy sexual habits of students at Bucknell,” Allardyce said. “It was really important to me that myself and my peers get the opportunity to learn how to have more fulfilling sexual experiences in college that involve more communication and pleasure. I also wanted to get students talking openly about sex, and not be afraid of being stigmatized for it.”
Both Allardyce and Lauer said the event was a huge success. Lauer said that the forum was packed and all of the seats were filled to the point where students and faculty had to sit on the steps and on the floor. Lauer also said that mostly students attended.
“She included a lot of emphasis on safe, communicative, consensual sex throughout the presentation,” Lauer said. “I think her talk was eye-opening, and most of all empowering. It felt so good to hear sex talked about openly and most importantly honestly. I am so grateful to Tristan for traveling to Pennsylvania to speak to Bucknell. We really needed it.”
Next year Allardyce hopes to run more sex positive events, whether that means doing another lecture or opening up a student-facilitated dialogue.