Today’s personal story features Jenn, a 47-year-old woman who has undergone more than her fair share of stressful events during her life. From being molested as a child and losing her virginity to date rape, to facing repeated infertility issues, miscarriages and finally a hysterectomy.
We cover how all these events affected her relationship with herself, as well as her intimate relationships with others.
Early sexual experiences
Courageous, Jenn outlines several of the challenges she faced with her first sexual experiences, and how her very first Obgyn appointment at age 15 was one of the key experiences that shaped her outlook and behavior with regards to infertility later in life and led her to adopt, foster and mother a total of 18 children!
Becoming sexual by choice after date rape
Listen in as Jenn discusses how losing her virginity to date rape informed her sexual encounters for a period after the event. She explains her reaction to having her choices taken away, causing a need to take control of her sexual experiences in a way that many people who have been through that trauma can relate to.
Jenn goes on to muse over some fateful positive experiences that spurred important realizations, empowering her to switch to more positive ways of relating to partners intimately – from a fortuitous massage, to a close friend who not only gave her first orgasm, but taught her an important lesson that resonated for the rest of her life.
These events led her to a fulfilling emotional connection with a new partner which turned into a long-lasting marriage.
The importance of receptivity
Jenn’s life could have taken a very different path if she hadn’t chosen to be receptive to the moments that mattered. She tells us why, for her, she chose to be in tune to these moments and receive the messages they contained.
The impact of infertility on an intimate relationship
As many women experiencing infertility problems can relate to, Jenn shares how she felt as if essential parts of her womanhood were ‘broken.’
She shares that undergoing seven surgeries and taking a variety of medications made her feel lost and ‘not herself.’ Describing her sex life as a scheduled chore, we hear why she decided to end the process, forgoing in vitro, and miraculously fell pregnant despite the odds.
Maintaining an intimate connection with your partner
Tune in to hear how fertility treatment, pregnancies, miscarriages, and finally a hysterectomy changed and impacted Jenn’s body, self-image and sex life. She shares with us how she was determined to turn things around by taking charge of her body once again.
Dating after divorce
In her next life stage, Jenn went from married stay at home mum to a working single mum. She tells us how the hysterectomy changed her body and sex life, and the strangeness of having sex with new people after coming out of a long-term, comfortable connection with a partner, describing it as “needing a whole new map.”
She also talks about the difficulties of negotiating a sex life in a mixed household with 12 children!
Important advice from a survivor
Tune in to hear Jenn’s powerful advice for survivors of rape, molestation, infertility or any emotional problems, culminating in her empowering final sentence, “Just leave the lights on!”
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Recent episodes from Jessa Zimmerman (see all)
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- 99: From Sexual Madness to Mindfulness – Jennifer Gunsaullis – November 18, 2019
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