Sex had always been confusing to me. My sex education consisted of admonitions to keep my legs closed so as to avoid getting pregnant, the AIDS patients I saw at my dad’s clinic and the awful images of STD ravaged privates I saw in medical textbooks. The message was clear. Sex was bad. Still, I couldn’t reconcile these lessons with the images I saw on TV. Moaning, writhing, screams and Cheshire cat grins.
I went to a Catholic school that glued together the biology book pages on contraception and my biology teacher fumbled through human reproduction. I remember a classmate beginning to ask a question about male sexual response.” What if you, as a man….” Before she could finish, he interrupted with” Not me, not me another man.”
My senior reading list included two books that had sex as a theme. An older lady took younger women and taught them about sex. On their wedding night the same old lady would take a bloody sheet out to an expectant crowd to announce that the new bride had remained chaste. The sexist nature of this hit me, but it was what it was. I wondered what virginity tests were carried out on men on their wedding night.
When I went away to university, I began to explore not only the act of sex but the ideas I had about it. My boyfriend at the time was from the Coastal region and told me that he was taught how to pleasure a woman and women were taught how to pleasure men. He told me about Unyago; a form of initiation that included sex education. I was fascinated. This information blew my mind. I had always thought of sex as a chore women had, never as anything pleasurable.
In university, my friend took me to a bridal shower with a sex auntie in attendance. The older lady was there to teach the bride to be how to please her husband in bed. The night ended up being a bit like a live sex show sans a male participant. She showed us everything, including how to squirt. No amount of wine can prep you for that. I left unsatisfied, wondering what about me? What about my pleasure? Who was teaching the men how to please me?
Enter Getrude Mungai. A self proclaimed sexologist who made pleasure her business. Mrs. Mungai, as she prefers to be addressed carries out trainings on love and romance for couples. She even has a TV show, Connect that focuses on intimacy. That alone is a coup, it being that Kenya is a very straight laced religious country.
Getrude’s message is very feminist. She does not just teach women how to pleasure men; she teaches men how to pleasure women. With whole shows dedicated to ‘How to touch a woman- Gertrude ensures we get ours too.
The revolutionary nature of her show has earned her many critics. Church groups have accused her of being nothing but a glorified pimp, ruining African values. The African status quo where sex was just for men’s pleasure is being questioned and this makes very many people mad. Women here are seen as a means to an orgasm, baby makers, but never as sexual beings with needs and wants. We come from a culture where virginity tests are the norm, where Female Genital Mutilation is still practiced. For someone to go on TV and proclaim that women need to get theirs shifts that power dynamic. She has had to tone down her content, using words like Mr. Victor and Miss Victoria for sexual organs. She has regular teaching sessions where she goes into detail about positions and how to locate the G-spot; stuff she can’t show on TV. Her show has started a national dialogue on sex and women as well as our very archaic view on women. You can watch her show here