Sex has always been a significant theme in my life. As a child, I was unabashedly intrigued by sex and bold in my exploration of this taboo realm. As you can imagine, I got into A LOT of trouble. After several parent-teacher meetings, countless ass whoppings, and serious side eye from parents, I got the message that my curiosity about sex, i.e. sex itself, was wrong. Of course, this didn’t stop my exploration; I just became shameful and secretive about it. And so began a series of disempowering and traumatic sexual experiences which exponentially distorted my understanding of love and sex. At some point, I began to associate love and sex with powerlessness, punishment, and pain. I didn’t recognize this, however, until I entered my first romantic relationship in which I found myself inexplicably drawn to BDSM*.
*Bondage and Discipline (BD), Dominance and Submission (DS), Sadism and Masochism (SM)
I was trapped in a painful cycle of retraumatization, a pattern that persisted in my relationships even as partners changed. In therapy, I learned that by engaging in consensual violent sex, I was attempting to work through the sexual trauma I had experienced, to rewrite the script you could say. What I now understand is that I was using BDSM to not only reinforce my distorted view on love and sex, but also as a defense mechanism to avoid intimacy. You see, our bodies have an intelligence of their own. Despite my subversive attraction to pain and my illogical attempt to heal through pain, there was no way that I could feel safe enough to open myself and establish a deep heart connection with someone who would inflict violence upon me. I now understand that violence and love cannot exist simultaneously.
I was on to something though. As my therapist conceptualized, the way in is the way out. Healing sexual trauma and shame through sex actually makes a lot of sense. Healing, however, required a different kind of sex and connection than the energetic imprint of powerlessness, punishment, and pain that I had become so conditioned to. The healing, the pleasure, the authentic love that I so desperately desired required something beyond sex. It mandated lovemaking that was rooted in consciousness, intimacy, and love.
Healing womb trauma through right relationship and sex
I refer to the womb as an energetic archive. The womb holds the energetic signatures of every person that we are physically intimate with.
Like myself, it is common for survivors of trauma and abuse to engage in toxic relationships and/or violent sex and/or promiscuous sex. While, even if subconsciously, the intention may be to heal, the effect is counterproductive. When we exchange energy, especially through sex, with people who are imbalanced or have distorted, low vibrational energy, we intensify the stagnant, toxic energy that is already in our wombs and bodies from past womb trauma. We become more imbalanced and disconnected.
When doing womb work to heal womb trauma, a first and essential step is committing oneself to right relationships, to be highly selective about who we exchange sexual energy with.
Like the womb, the vagina has an intelligence of its own and when confronted with emotional and/or physical trauma, can develop protective mechanisms. In the case of what is referred to as genital armoring, the vaginal tissues become tense, which, over time can cause tissues to stiffen, inhibiting energy flow in the vagina and lowering sensation. For people with vaginas, genital armoring can be identified by decreased libido, painful intercourse, decreased clitoral or vaginal sensitivity, and/or vaginal dryness. Additionally, like the womb, the vagina also holds energy. One documented energetic access point in the vagina is “the sacred spot.” This spot, located deeper inside the vagina, stores sexual trauma and pain. The sacred spot can be painful when first accessed, especially if a person has experienced sexual trauma or has a significant vibration of shame, fear, or pain surrounding sexuality. Over time, through consciousness and gentle pressure at this energy point, the sacred spot results in deep healing and profound physical pleasure and spiritual expansion.
Putting this information together, it becomes clear the power of sex as a modality for womb healing. However, the healing can only take place in right relationships. As I said before, the womb and vagina are very intelligent. The energy centers that lie deep within the vagina and womb can only be accessed when a person feels safe enough to open them. An environment of love, support, and mutual trust and respect must first be established for someone to feel safe enough in their vulnerability to do womb work with a partner. Creating this environment, this bond, takes time. In right relationship, a loving partner can hold space for one’s healing. They can also provide loving energy, the antithesis to pain, which can speed up the momentum of one’s healing and aid in shifting one’s energy from a dominant vibration of pain.
How is sex different for me now?
Before continuing, I want to state that I do believe that self-work is essential and perhaps the first step before healing through right relationship and sex can occur. The partner that one attracts will reflect where they are vibrationally and therefore, in their healing.
As I recall my earlier sexual experiences, the predominant feelings that surface are fear and disconnection. I recall being so immersed in fear. Most of the time, I was very much in my head, which caused a disconnection between my partner and me during sex. A lot of energy and attention went into keeping myself closed off. I was unable to let go enough to have an orgasm and the few times I did they were surface level and brief, contained within a small area of my body.
NOW during lovemaking I feel deeply connected to not only my partner, but to myself. I am so fully in my body, I can feel every sensation. I feel that I am literally being filled with the energy and pleasure being generated during lovemaking. There is a complete openness and surrendering during sex that allows me to submerge with my partner, creating a flow of energy that loops through us both. As a result, I now have full bodied orgasms. I still have moments of release where I might cry, shake, or feel sad after sex. When this happens, I take space to soothe and connect with myself. I understand that this is my body’s way of communicating with me and releasing the energy of fear and trauma that has become layered and stagnant after so many years of trauma and pain.
Practicing the art of openness and surrender through physical sex created space for me to practice this in my everyday life. I am consistently in a state of openness and surrender. I am open to the Life Force Energy that is always available and flowing through me. I allow the Universe to provide me with blessings and opportunities daily.
As my dominant vibration of pain began to shift through healing sex, I no longer had an interest in BDSM. I eventually became disinterested in doing anything else that felt toxic to my womb. My whole life altered. Once womb work begins, it spreads out to every area of ones life.
It took YEARS and a lot of intentional self-work to get to where I currently am. And my womb work journey is still unfolding. I understand how deep pain and trauma go and releasing it doesn’t happen overnight, especially for those who have had multiple traumatic experiences. The more trauma one has experienced, the stronger the pull, the more momentum the vibration has. It takes less energy to stop a train going 10 mph than 50 or 100 mph.
Lastly, this article is not meant to shame or condemn anyone who enjoys BDSM. I simply wanted to share my experience and revelations. I now understand that every part of my journey was a necessary step in my healing. For those currently doing womb work to heal from womb trauma, accept yourself where you are in your journey. This is the most loving and healing thing you can do.
Jamila Kani is a ritual artist and sound healer dreaming/creating/loving in her home city, Washington DC.