This Intimacy Coach Helped Our Wellness House Guests Explore Their Deepest Desires

Brittany Flippen

While plenty of ESSIES are enjoying the perks of the 2024 ESSENCE Festival, like the fantastic performances (we’re looking at you, Cash Money Millionaires (Birdman, Juvenile, B.G., Lil Wayne), T-Pain, and others, or the Food and Wine Festival Experience, some are opting to focus and center their mental health, have difficult conversations about their well-being and overall lifestyle, and have fun. 

This year at Festival, we’ve decided to have wellness pods with experts doling out advice and providing expertise at the Wellness House activation to help our guests make sense of their everyday lives, from Tarot card experiences to nutrition advice and sex talk. Yes, you read that correctly; we brought the pillow and sex talk to ESSENCE Fest.

I decided to start my column, “Sex Talk,” last year because I wanted Black women to begin to feel comfortable with broaching and openly discussing the topic, as well as exploring their sexual desires freely. Too often, we’re raised in households that encourage us to bury our sexuality, which leads to disastrous physical and mental ramifications. “Sex Talk” has grown as a safe space for Black women to learn of the newest sex trends, learn some tips and tricks for the bedroom, establish ways to preserve their sexual health, and, most importantly, allow them just to be themselves.

At the Let’s Talk About Sex pod, we tapped the best Black women sexperts and relationship coaches to counsel, encourage, and inspire our ESSIES. One of our standout experts, Brittany Flippen, is a New Orleans native, mother, wife, and relationship and intimacy coach. We spoke to her today about what our guests should expect, how to find creative ways to work in intimacy in your schedule with your partner, especially if you’re busy, and how to find the courage to be more intimate. Check out our conversation below!

ESSENCE: We are excited that you’re here talking about sex. So, what do you hope that our guests can get from these sex kind of sessions with you?

Brittany Flippen: Although I’m a relationship coach, sex is such an important element of partnership. You need sex to keep a relationship strong and healthy. 

You know, with age and with women going through everything from postpartum to menopause, you have to learn how to keep intimacy as a priority. Of course, there are other things in the relationship that matters as well, but intimacy doesn’t always have to be sex; affection is important. 

What are your top three tips for keeping intimacy and sex top of mind in relationships?

One is that you always have to try to reignite that fire. You know, relationships go through different things. Also, try to explore new ways to be a bit open by using toys, trying new things, being open-minded, maybe the place where you’re having sex, switching it up a little bit and being spontaneous in your relationship. 

One of the reasons why I started Sex Talk and why we brought it to Wellness House is because a lot of Black women are just not comfortable speaking about sex and intimacy. Do you have any tips for Black women to feel more relaxed, even in their sexuality? 

Speak with a sex therapist! Sometimes, you need to receive professional help and not rely on your girlfriends. After you speak with an experienced professional, apply their tips and recommendations to your household. You have to try!

How do you keep your relationship spicy, especially when you’ve been together for years? 

I’ve been with my partner for 12 years, so we must try new things to keep our relationship spicy. We have two sons, and it’s to the point where, at times, I don’t want to be intimate, but I know it’s an important component of our relationship. So, I try to be open-minded when trying new things, like getting dice, toys, and lingerie. He loves loud colors when it comes to lingerie. So, I try to purchase colorful lingerie just for him. We want to be together until we are no longer on this earth, so we must find ways to keep each other engaged.

What are quick tips to have sex seamlessly or to achieve intimate conversations or moments with your partner when you’re low on time?

Strive to have strong communication to deepen your sex life. My husband has several businesses, and so do I, and we’re limited on time. We found out that it’s best to have sex when the kids are at school or during their lunchtime! Sometimes, my intimacy levels aren’t high, but we end up on the same page through communication. We also never stopped dating. Sometimes, we even do a staycation where we’re away from the kids to go get a hotel, go to dinner, and have sex, where I can be louder, given the kids aren’t there.

What’s one main takeaway you hope our guests here today leave with?

Feeling empowered in their bodies and mind! A lot of people I spoke with were expressing that they don’t feel like they are in the mental space for sex or intimacy. So, aiming to get back to yourself is important so you can enjoy the beauties of love, sex, and intimacy.

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