Dr. Laura Berman Webcast Transcript
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Oprah: Well, it's Friday. Yes, it is. And the final night of our Best Life Week webcast. So far this week we have tackled your questions about weight and health and spirituality and money. But now I want you to kind of cozy up with your partner or gather around with your girlfriends, because tonight we're talking about sex, baby. Yes. After last week's Sex 101 show, thousands of you had so many questions for world renowned sex therapist Dr. Laura Berman, and she'll be answering many of those questions tonight. And since we're on the Web, we can get a little more explicit, although I've seen a preview of some of your questions. Lord, listen, I never knew black people could blush as much as I have reading some of those questions. Welcome, Dr. Berman.
Dr. Berman: Thank you.
Oprah: Oh, my goodness gracious. What is—
Dr. Berman: These are questions people have.
Oprah: What is going on? So it's going to be explicit. It's the kind of thing where if I was on television, I would be taken off the air with the kind of questions you all have lined up for us tonight. But let's start. Let's explain why this has sort of hit a nerve and why good sex is such an important part of the overall whole of living your best life.
Dr. Berman: And I feel so grateful to be part of this, because sex is such a fundamental part of living your best life. Obviously, your diet and your economics and your health and, you know, your spirit and well-being.
Oprah: Your well being and spirit.
Dr. Berman: They're all fundamental. But you can't leave your sex life. Sex is such a basic part of your intimacy, your emotional intimacy, your connection to your partner. It's the fiber that keeps the two of you together, different from roommates, and also for each of us individually it's such a fundamental part of who we are, and when we get cut off from that, everything else sort of gets unraveled as well.
Oprah: Okay. So we have people who are standing by for Skyping, we're taking your calls and we have your e-mails also live. So if you have a specific question for Dr. Berman about living your best sex life in 2009, you can e-mail us your question on the right-hand side of your computer screen or call us at this number that's right there on your screen, 866-677-2496. You can do both, actually. To begin, let's quickly recap the five steps to better sex that Dr. Berman covered last week. Here we go.
Dr. Berman: Here we go. So the first one was to tell the truth.
Oprah: Tell the truth.
Dr. Berman: And when we were talking about the show, we were talking about the show, we were talking about it in terms of not faking orgasm. We heard Luanne's story who had been faking orgasm for over 25 years, and that's not an uncommon story. But it's also telling the truth about what you want in the bedroom. Not only what's not working but what you'd like to work better, what you want to change and what you want more of and being honest with yourself when things aren't working in your relationship and not working in your sex life, really not sweeping those issues under the rug.
Oprah: And a lot of women in particular have trouble doing that.
Dr. Berman: Yeah.
Oprah: Because if you have been lying for 27 years and haven't had an orgasm, you've been faking the orgasm, how do you suddenly now—
Dr. Berman: Right.
Oprah: —come forward and say whatever?
Dr. Berman: "Guess what." Yeah.
Dr. Berman: And it's scary.
Oprah: I think we need the language for it. And tonight on TV—we're not on TV, so we can actually get the language for what to say.
Dr. Berman: Absolutely. We're going to.
Oprah: Okay, number 2.
Dr. Berman: Number 2 is to ask for what you want. So that means not only figuring it out for yourself, that's the first step, but being able to put into words or actions what it is that works for you. So the disconnect is that women think that, you know, if they're in a heterosexual relationship, they think the guy's going to be their knight in shining armor and figure it out for them. "If I'm just with the right guy, then I'll be able to have an orgasm, then I'll sexually respond." No. You have to own your own sexuality and your sexual response and you have to be really explicit. Men like directions.
Oprah: Yeah, they do.
Dr. Berman: They do. They like a manual. And so you have to be really explicit about what you want.
Oprah: Dr. Berman's foreplay map is available at Oprah.com to help you start that conversation with your partner. That foreplay map, we were talking about that the other day, a lot of that—
Dr. Berman: Yeah.
Oprah: —that really changed things for a lot of people.
Dr. Berman: It really did. And it's such a great way to get the conversation started. And one woman e-mailed me and asked, "Okay, what happens if it changes?"
Dr. Berman: "Tonight I give him this map, but it does change from time to time." That's the great thing.
Oprah: "Don't start on my ear. Start on my nose."
Dr. Berman: "Tonight I want my nose first." But you have a blueprint to start with. and you can make modifications or revisit the map or you can say, "Remember last time I liked my nose first? Tonight I'd really like this first." So it's an ongoing conversation.
Oprah: We were doing a show today live and Denis Leary was there and Gayle and Ali and Mark, and we're talking about how Denis Leary had, you know, he was going to do this book—he actually did this book called Why We Suck, and he was going to do this whole chapter on why I sucked and then—(laughter)—and then he started watching the show and, you know, went to Oprah.com and he—the first word he put in was penis. And we said all this on the air because you can say penis on TV.
Dr. Berman: Yeah.
Oprah: And then Ali asked him, "Why didn't you put in the word 'vagina'?"And he said, "I actually did." And we were then talking during the commercial break with the audience, and we were talking about how some words we're more comfortable with than others.
Dr. Berman: Right.
Oprah: The "vagina" word, just uncomfortable. It's easier to say "penis" than it is to say "vagina."
Dr. Berman: Right. Right.
Oprah: And it's easier to say "uterus" than to say "vagina." And we were saying that "uterus," because it's all, you know, connected to the whole woman's—