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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Oh Megan puts the ‘Oh’ in orgasm

Published: February 17, 2012
Section: Arts, Etc.

For the second time this year, the Brandeis Vagina Club brought back “Oh Megan!” to impart her knowledge about the female orgasm. Held in Lown Auditorium, the workshop quickly became standing room only as Brandeisians learned about themselves, their partners and how to stimulate their sex lives.

Megan is a nationally certified sexuality educator who has toured the country giving workshops on sexual issues. She has taught at more than three-dozen higher educational institutions from medical schools to the Ivy Leagues to Brandeis. She boasts a “sassy yet approachable style” that allows her to impact her knowledge without her audience feeling uncomfortable.

So why bring Megan to Brandeis? Aside from teaching all the different ways a female can reach orgasm, what does she bring to campus? A major part of Megan’s presentation involves dispelling myths. During her presentation she told a story of how at one of her other workshops a woman came up to her after they had a section where they shared stories about masturbation. She asked Megan why none of the women who had talked about masturbation had physical impairments, for she had always been taught that disabilities resulted from masturbation. It is myths like these that Megan helps with; she knows the answer to every old wives tale told and every rumor heard. For example, vibrators can cause desensitization, but it is only for a short amount of time, while circumcision can make it harder to orgasm. Sexual myths are easy to believe, it is not always a talked-about topic, and it is easier to believe something heard one time than to know nothing about sex at all. Megan’s ease in covering myths in her presentation as well as in questions asked by the audience is one of her true skills.

Megan’s style of talking about sex is what truly makes her a good sex educator. She is very down to earth, aware of what makes people feel uncomfortable or awkward but at the same time encouraging them to share those feelings of discomfort. She cracks jokes as she wields her vagina puppet, easing tension that arises from people’s uneasiness about talking about such taboo topics. She easily encourages “genital self-esteem,” explaining that women should be proud of their genitals no matter what they look like. She backs up her facts with hard evidence, showing pictures of how women’s genitals always look uniquely different and even beautiful. When asking for thoughts and reactions she is sincere, accepting all people’s views and reactions whether they are disgusted or gleeful.

Brandeisians’ reactions to Megan are also somewhat astonishing. While sporting events or plays are often only half-filled with spectators, Megan’s workshop was very well-attended. Couples sat together, presumably trying to learn about how to please each other, while others attended just to learn these facts for themselves. The audience would raptly pay attention, often asking Megan to repeat questions asked and waiting impatiently for answers. While class discussions often result in students falling asleep, Megan’s questions were met with multiple answers. Students would reveal their actual reactions to the presentation and video clips shown. It seemed as though Oh Megan’s openness is contagious; since she is so open and honest in her presentation, it inspired students to act the same way in their responses.

That being said, Megan is not for the faint of heart. She is serious about exploring all aspects of sex, from showing a sex move dubbed “The Alien” to explaining the most explicit of questions. Megan’s presentation also includes playing a video centered around a woman named Betty Dodson. Dodson is a woman past middle age who claims she used to believe she was “genitally deformed” and it was only once she realized that some other women’s genitals looked like hers that she was able to lead a successful life. In this way, she said, “porn transformed her.” The video with Dodson shows normal middle-aged or older women fully naked, displaying their genitals to the camera. While the clip is occasionally hard to watch since in our culture it is not the norm for average women to sit in a circle and compare genitals, the message Dodson and Megan are trying to get across is actually important. Women’s genitals come in all shapes and sizes. The way they look does not matter for sexual enjoyment and should not be viewed negatively. Instead the clip focuses on the “beauty” of genitals.

Why Megan is so important is because she is able to inspire confidence. Whether students were worried about their sex lives, genitals or just purely curious, Megan preaches that all sexual identities, appearances and desires are acceptable. She encourages communication between partners, and explains that it is normal to want to have sex, or to want to talk about it. While it is easy to feel alone and have sexual questions in the society in which we live today, Megan is here to help spread acceptance and knowledge.