Women's sexuality has long been the stuff of mystery and myth, even to physicians and specialists. Female sexual and reproductive health was not considered a major concern of the medical profession, largely because of the attitude society has held regarding femininity, modesty and privacy.
Today it is becoming alarmingly apparent that a large percentage of women are not only unhappy sexually, but uneducated about the functions of their body and unaware of their rights and expectations when it comes to sexual health and pleasure. There are many sexual dysfunctions which can be corrected with information, medication and therapy. Jennifer and Laura Berman are determined to make sure women understand their bodies, how they work and what they can do for us as sexual beings.
"For Women Only" is a collaborative effort for the Berman sisters, Jennifer as an M.D. And Laura as a Psychology Ph.D. The purpose of the book is to enlighten, educate and reassure women who are feeling alone, abnormal or unsure of their sexual selves. The book is a guide to the female body and a wonderful reference tool for women who need information geared specifically for their own gender and not lumped in with basic human medicine.
"We've found that many women are still influenced by the social taboo that nice girls shouldn't feel entitled to their own sexual satisfaction." (pg. 34) That feeling is very pervasive today, but the Bermans also acknowledge that many women may also suffer from physical barriers to sexual health and don't know where to turn to get information and proper treatment.
"In early 1999, the National Health and Social Life Survey published in the Journal of the American Medical Association released a report showing sexual problems to be even more widespread; the survey found that 43 percent of American women, young and old, suffer from some sexual dysfunction-a significantly higher percentage than that of men, who suffer at a rate of 31 percent." pg. xiii (Introduction) That is a staggering number, and it is a daunting task to help that many women to both recognize and fulfill themselves sexually.
The book begins with a history of female sexuality from ancient times to modern. It then moves on to a general but informative description of the female sexual anatomy and its function. The next topic is the definition and some causes of female sexual dysfunction followed by different treatment and therapy options for patients, and what they should be talking to their doctors about when problems and concerns arise. The last chapters deal with sexual function throughout the life cycle, the importance of overall health and exercise to sexual health and techniques to help improve sexual satisfaction that women can use themselves.
The Bermans strongly emphasize self help in this area. They make it clear that women need to seek help and counseling and that a healthy sex life is an important component of a happy, long and fulfilling life. The sisters are committed to making this important part of women's health a mainstream issue and to remove the stigma and shame women sometimes feel about their bodies and the function of them.
This is an excellent read and can be recommended to all women, but particularly any woman who is either unhappy with her sex life, or is experiencing physical discomfort or pain during sex and therefore, avoiding it. The Bermans feel that we all owe this to ourselves and are working very hard to help women recognize and accept this part of their lives comfortably and happily.
For Women Only (Amazon
For Women Only (Amazon.CA - Canada)
For Women Only (Amazon