March 20, 2018

Breaking Taboos

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Intimacy, Sexual Health and Cancer, Cancer and sexuality, breast cancer, intimacy, communication about sex, intimate touch


   Do you know how to initiate a conversation about intimacy and sexuality with your partner?       Given the shaming culture we live in and that talking about sex is largely taboo, it’s no surprise that many people don’t know how to open this door. Not talking about intimacy and sex is one of the main reasons many people don’t have as much fun sexually. It can feel like tricky terrain that you don’t know how to navigate.

How to break the ice and get the energy flowing? There are 3 steps to take to get started:

  1. Explore and learn what brings you pleasure. Take some alone time to touch yourself from head to toe with the intention of mapping your pleasure zones. We have millions of nerve endings in our skin and they’re located all over out body. As you explore, experiment with different types and pressures of touch ~ do you like the sensation of light fingernails raking your skin or do you prefer firm and deep touch? You will probably discover that there are places and types of touch that feel healing, loving, sensual, erotic or sexual. Make note of these and also note that they may feel different at different times and with different touch. Also note that this is new territory for you now that cancer is in the picture ~ you may have missing or altered body parts, scar tissue, numb areas, and so on. Learn your body as it is now.
  2. Make a date with your partner and tell them that you want to share your Pleasure Map with them and explore theirs. Show them what you’ve discovered and then guide their hands so that they learn how, where and when to touch you. Then invite them into and exploration of their pleasure zones ~ if they’re willing, you touch and have them guide you about what feels good to them. As Pleasure Mapmakers, you are communicating with the language of touch as well as with your words. Learning the language of touch and the different aspects or levels of touch is a wonderful experience. Take turns telling each other 3 specific ways and locations of touch that bring you pleasure. If you want to continue sharing more, please do.
  3. The next time you are together, ask your partner to touch you in some specific places in the ways that feel best to you. Then ask them how they want to be touched, and give them what they ask for. This is an easy way to learn to ask for what you want and need, and to listen to your partner as they tell you what they want and need.

One of the secrets to intimacy and satisfying sex play is to ask for what you want, and to learn what your partner wants to feel loved, and then give it to them.


Play with this practice and see how many maps you can create and share with each other. And let me know what you discover!


  1. Barbara,

    I enjoyed reading your blogs. Great words of wisdom even for women who have not had cancer.
    10 years ago when I had a double mastectomy and chemo I wanted to buy a fashionable nightgown and could not find one. Because of this my friend and I started Still You Inc. We manufacture a line of fashion clothing ( all with bilateral pockets ) and a prosthesis , the Illusion. The Illusion wan be worn swimming or in a hot tub ( will fit in many regular bathing suits ) and can be worn immediately after surgery .. it only weighs 6 oz.
    I hope that you will consider adding our website information as a link to your webpage. We would love for more women who have to take the breast cancer journey to know that there are beautiful garments for them.
    Thank you for letting me share our information.

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