6 Signs You're A Sexually Mature Woman

Sex really is so much better when you approach it with a mature perspective.


Last spring, I wrote a piece for the site entitled, "What GROWN Women Consider Great Sex To Be". If you're rushing and you just want the list that I provided, it's this: passionate, creative, fulfilling, emotionally mature, reciprocal, consistent, private and real. I still very much stand by those points. But the reason I'm opening this up with that article is because I must admit that when I sat down to write this one, I thought about back when I was a teen mom director for a nonprofit and how often the teenagers in there would tell me how "grown" they were. They'd say that they were having children because they were grown or that they were having sex without protection because they were grown. They'd say that they didn't need any of my advice because they were—yep, you guessed it—grown.

While grown and mature can seem like they are one and the same, that's not 100-percent the case. Grown is oftentimes about how something (or someone) appears to be, while maturity usually can't be faked. Circumstances and situations can easily reveal if a person is truly mature or immature. And when it comes to whether a woman is sexually mature—sexually developed mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and relationally—I wanted to take out a few moments to provide some examples that are dead giveaways so that you can make choices based on being mature and not just…grown.

1. You Have Sex Because YOU Want to…First


While sex is a game that, at least most times, two can play, it's important that you partake in it because you want to more than anything else. I can't tell you how many times I've literally talked someone off of some sort of low self-esteem ledge, all because they had sex with someone, believing that, if they did, that would make the guy want them more or even feel the same way that they do. Not only is that a HUGE gamble (peep this All Def Digital skitSmash or Pass to get an idea of what I mean; sex really can be nothing but a physical act for a lot of people), but real talk—you're better than that. Empires have literally risen and fallen because of the power that lies between a woman's legs. Or, as a wise older woman once said, "You're sitting on a million dollars and giving it away for a Happy Meal." Unfortunately, we think the prize inside of that meal is a man's heart.

A sexually mature woman is fully aware that sex is something that isn't merely "for a man"; it's something that should be enjoyed, to the utmost, by both individuals. And since she is responsible for herself, it's important that she participates, more than anything, because she wants to. Not because it's expected of her, not because she's being pressured into doing it, and not because it will get a man to do what she wants him to outside of the bedroom. It's very immature—and by that, I mean underdeveloped—to believe otherwise. Please avoid this dangerous way of thinking.

2. You Don’t Use Sex As a Tool of Manipulation


"Coochie coupons". That's what I call them. If I get some push-back on this, that's fine, but it really bothers me when I hear a woman strategize getting something that she wants by using sex, or even worse, advising that other women do the same. You know, saying something along the lines of, "Girl, if you want him to get you those shoes, all you gotta do is give him some." Umm, does everyone know what the definition of prostitution is? It's engaging in sexual activity for money (or something that money can buy). Period. So naw, I'm not a big fan of going into the act of sex with a "give to get something monetary or tangible" mentality. No matter how you dice it, it's a form of manipulation (to put it nicely) and that is never a good look.

Am I saying that sex doesn't release stress and bring two people closer together which can result in a partner wanting to bless their companion? Indeed, it can. But how would you feel if a guy's only or even main reason for having sex with you was so that he could emotionally manipulate you or take advantage of you? Doesn't feel very good, does it? So, why would you do that to your partner?

Sexually mature people don't use sex as a tool to control someone; they use sex as a way to connect with them. Anything else is a bonus. NOT their motive.

3. You Are Able to Separate Good Sex from a Healthy Relationship


Guys know that many of us—not all, but many—have a hard time separating our heart from our parts. So much in fact that one guy I know—who has at least eight kids by four different women, last I checked—once told me that the way he was able to get out of paying child support was by continuing to sleep with all of the mothers of his children. It's not because he loves them; it's because it's his way of blurring the lines and preventing them from seeing matters clearly.

I once heard R&B singer Tank say in a pretty infamous interview (I don't feel right hyperlinking it; it's just that notorious) that he used to be known for having sex with women like he had been knowing them and was in love with them for years, even if that couldn't be further from the truth. He ain't the only man who's wired that way. That's one of the main reasons I wrote articles like "Don't Mistake A Great Sex Partner For A Great Life Partner", "We Should Really Rethink The Term 'Casual Sex'", and "Experts Believe Passion (Not Love) Makes Sex Better. You Agree?"

I know what it's like for sex to be so outstanding that you think your partner is good for you simply because they might feel good to you (some of y'all will catch that later). But experience (first) and maturity (second) have taught me that there is a difference between climaxing and intimacy and, just because a man is good in bed, that doesn't automatically make him a worthy candidate for a relationship. If you don't believe me, check out a few episodes of the podcast,Advice From A F*ck Boy. If that doesn't convince you, I don't know what will.

4. Your Entire Self-Worth Is Not Based on Your Sexiness or Sexual Performance


Although I am a big fan of linking sources, something else that I'll spare you from is a tweet that I recently saw—one that, as much as I read, research, and talk about sex, still had me over here like, "Wow. Really?" At my age (45), it's hard to tell the difference between what 15 and 20 looks like at this point, but what I do know is the girl on the video was young. What I also know is whoever filmed her performing fellatio on—wait for it—a gas nozzle (she even took the time to put a whole condom on it) is NOT her friend. Shoot, the girl doing the act isn't her own friend, either. As I was reading the comments, what I noticed is a lot of folks were calling her a clout chaser. Perhaps. But the first thing that came to my mind is how much she must base her self-worth in her sexuality.

Is that an extreme example of this particular point? Lord, I hope so. But let's not act like sex doesn't sell and that a lot of women base their self-esteem on how sexy they are or on how good their sexual performance may be. I know I used to be that way. It actually took becoming abstinent to realize that being told that I'm sexy is nice and being told that I ain't too shabby in bed is cool, but if a man doesn't see my worth and value beyond that, something is very dysfunctional within our dynamic. More importantly, if I don't see my worth and value beyond that, something is very, very awry within myself.

5. Your Sex Life Is Part of Your World but It Doesn’t Consume It


One definition of mature is "completely developed". Now, I talk about sex…a lot. I mean, a lot. But it's still considerably less than I used to. One day, when I took out a moment to ponder why that was the case, I realized it was because I used to always lead with the thing that I felt the most comfortable with and confident in. I was knowledgeable about sex, I had been told that I was good at it and, my self-esteem at the time was constantly looking for ego boosts so—sex, sex, sex is all that would come out of my mouth. But as I began to nurture other parts of my being, I saw how immature that way of thinking and approach was—how immature it is to be a one-dimensional being, period. Because, again, to be mature is to be developed and a completely developed person brings more than one topic or issue to the table. They don't always lead with just one thing and they encourage their own selves to expand their horizons.

If you choose to look at sexual maturity, just from this angle alone, and then think about how much sexually related stuff that you see on Instagram on a daily basis, it might make you wonder how many sexually mature people actually exist. The good news is you have the power to be one of them—and then to model what that looks (and acts) like to others.

6. Your Holistic Health and Well-Being Trumps Everything


A couple of years ago, I wrote "Each Of My 14 Sex Partners Taught Me Something New" for the site. While I get that everyone might not want to put their entire sex life on blast, I do recommend doing a little sex journaling on the topic. For one thing, make no mistake about it, soul ties are very real. It's a good idea to take "inventory" on how your sex partners and patterns have and/or are affecting you. Another reason why it's a good idea is because, we're all sexual beings. Because we consist of a mind, heart and body, sex affects all three.

That said, oftentimes, there is "sexual imbalance" (if not straight-up mayhem) in our lives because we lack the wisdom, insight and yes, maturity to realize if there is a sexual activity or sexual partner who is only benefiting one part of us, they're not really doing us much good.

An example of where I am coming from is, if sex is good to your body but it's got you constantly stressed out and heartbroken too, at the end of the day, it's not doing you much good at all. Sexually immature individuals ignore this fact while sexually mature people tend to nip the sex in the bud because nothing is worth sabotaging their holistic health and well-being. Sexually mature people know that good sex is easier to come by than finding oneself after it's been "lost" in another person.

I'll be the first to say that sex is beautiful, breathtaking and magnificent. But it's this and so much more when the two people having it are sexually mature. When they approach sex from the angle of being emotionally well-developed, spiritually cultivated and mentally sound. This year, make it a goal to either become or remain a sexually mature woman. Then require that your partner be nothing less. Feel me? Something tells me that you totally do.

Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:

9 Sex-Related Questions You & Your Partner Should Ask Each Other. Tonight.

10 Things Couples Who (Consistently) Have Great Sex Do

These Are The Deal-Breakers You Shouldn't Hesitate To Have In The Bedroom

I Only Have One Rule In The Bedroom: I Come First.

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You may not know her by Elisabeth Ovesen – writer and host of the love, sex and relationships advice podcast Asking for a Friend. But you definitely know her other alter ego, Karrine Steffans, the New York Times best-selling author who lit up the literary and entertainment world when she released what she called a “tell some” memoir, Confessions of a Video Vixen.

Her 2005 barn-burning book gave an inside look at the seemingly glamorous world of being a video vixen in the ‘90s and early 2000s, and exposed the industry’s culture of abuse, intimidation, and misogyny years before the Me Too Movement hit the mainstream. Her follow-up books, The Vixen Diaries (2007) and The Vixen Manual: How To Find, Seduce And Keep The Man You Want (2009) all topped the New York Times best-seller list. After a long social media break, she's back. xoNecole caught up with Ovesen about the impact of her groundbreaking book, what life is like for her now, and why she was never “before her time”– everyone else was just late to the revolution.

xoNecole: Tell me about your new podcast Asking for a Friend with Elisabeth Ovesen and how that came about.

Elisabeth Ovesen: I have a friend who is over [at Blavity] and he just asked me if I wanted to do something with him. And that's just kinda how it happened. It wasn't like some big master plan. Somebody over there was like, “Hey, we need content. We want to do this podcast. Can you do it?” And I was like, “Sure.” And that's that. That was around the holidays and so we started working on it.

xoNecole: Your life and work seem incredibly different from when you first broke out on the scene. Can you talk a bit about the change in your career and how your life is now?

EO: Not that different. I mean my life is very different, of course, but my work isn't really that different. My life is different, of course, because I'm 43. My career started when I was in my 20s, so we're looking at almost 20 years since the beginning of my career. So, naturally life has changed a lot since then.

I don’t think my career has changed a whole lot – not as far as my writing is concerned, and my stream of consciousness with my writing, and my concerns and the subject matter hasn’t changed much. I've always written about interpersonal relationships, sexual shame, male ego fragility, respectability politics – things like that. I always put myself in the center of that to make those points, which I think were greatly missed when I first started writing. I think that society has changed quite a bit. People are more aware. People tell me a lot that I have always been “before my time.” I was writing about things before other people were talking about that; I was concerned about things before my generation seemed to be concerned about things. I wasn't “before my time.” I think it just seems that way to people who are late to the revolution, you know what I mean?

I retired from publishing in 2015, which was always the plan to do 10 years and retire. I was retired from my pen name and just from the business in general in 2015, I could focus on my business, my education and other things, my family. I came back to writing in 2020 over at Medium. The same friend that got me into the podcast, actually as the vice president of content over at Medium and was like, “Hey, we need some content.” I guess I’m his go-to content creator.

xoNecole: Can you expound on why you went back to your birth name versus your stage name?

EO: No, it was nothing to expound upon. I mean, writers have pen names. That’s like asking Diddy, why did he go by Sean? I didn't go back. I've always used that. Nobody was paying attention. I've never not been myself. Karrine Steffans wrote a certain kind of book for a certain kind of audience. She was invented for the urban audience, particularly. She was never meant to live more than 10 years. I have other pen names as well. I write under several names. So, the other ones are just nobody's business right now. Different pen names write different things. And Elisabeth isn’t my real name either. So you'll never know who I really am and you’ll never know what my real name is, because part of being a writer is, for me at least, keeping some sort of anonymity. Anything I do in entertainment is going to amass quite a bit because who I am as a person in my private life isn't the same a lot of times as who I am publicly.

xoNecole: I want to go back to when you published Confessions of a Video Vixen. We are now in this time where people are reevaluating how the media mistreated women in the spotlight in the 2000s, namely women like Britney Spears. So I’d be interested to hear how you feel about that period of your life and how you were treated by the media?

EO: What I said earlier. I think that much of society has evolved quite a bit. When you look back at that time, it was actually shocking how old-fashioned the thinking still was. How women were still treated and how they're still treated now. I mean, it hasn't changed completely. I think that especially for the audience, I think it was shocking for them to see a woman – a woman of color – not be sexually ashamed.

I hate being like other people. I don't want to do what anyone else is doing. I can't conform. I will not conform. I think in 2005 when Confessions was published, that attitude, especially about sex, was very upsetting. Number one, it was upsetting to the men, especially within urban and hip-hop culture, which is built on misogyny and thrives off of it to this day. And the women who protect these men, I think, you know, addressing a demographic that is rooted in trauma that is rooted in sexual shame, trauma, slavery of all kinds, including slavery of the mind – I think it triggered a lot of people to see a Black woman be free in this way.

I think it said a lot about the people who were upset by it. And then there were some in “crossover media,” a lot of white folks were upset too, not gonna lie. But to see it from Black women – Tyra Banks was really upset [when she interviewed me about Confessions in 2005]. Oprah wasn't mad [when she interviewed me]. As long as Oprah wasn’t mad, I was good. I didn't care what anybody else had to say. Oprah was amazing. So, watching Black women defend men, and Black women who had a platform, defend the sexual blackmailing of men: “If you don't do this with me, you won't get this job”; “If you don't do this in my trailer, you're going to have to leave the set”– these are things that I dealt with.

I just happened to be the kind of woman who, because I was a single mother raising my child all by myself and never got any help at all – which I still don't. Like, I'm 24 in college – not a cheap college either – one of the best colleges in the country, and I'm still taking care of him all by myself as a 21-year-old, 20-year-old, young, single mother with no family and no support – I wasn’t about to say no to something that could help me feed my son for a month or two or three.

xoNecole: We are in this post-Me Too climate where women in Hollywood have come forward to talk about the powerful men who have abused them. In the music industry in particular, it seems nearly impossible for any substantive change or movement to take place within music. It's only now after three decades of allegations that R. Kelly has finally been convicted and other men like Russell Simmons continue to roam free despite the multiple allegations against him. Why do you think it's hard for the music industry to face its reckoning?

EO: That's not the music industry, that's urban music. That’s just Black folks who make music and nobody cares about that. That's the thing; nobody cares...Nobody cares. It's not the music industry. It's just an "urban" thing. And when I say "urban," I say that in quotations. Literally, it’s a Black thing, where nobody gives a shit what Black people do to Black people. And Russell didn't go on unchecked, he just had enough money to keep it quiet. But you know, anytime you're dealing with Black women being disrespected, especially by Black men, nobody gives a shit.

And Black people don't police themselves so it doesn't matter. Why should anybody care? And Black women don't care. They'll buy an R. Kelly album right now. They’ll stream that shit right now. They don’t care. So, nobody cares. Nobody cares. And if you're not going to police yourself, then nobody's ever going to care.

xoNecole: Do you have any regrets about anything you wrote or perhaps something you may have omitted?

EO: Absolutely not. No. There's nothing that I wish I would've gone back and said to myself, no. I don’t think at 20-something years old, I'm supposed to understand every little thing. I don't think the 20-something-year-old woman is supposed to understand the world and know exactly what she's doing. I think that one of my biggest regrets, which isn't my regret, but a regret, is that I didn't have better parents. Because a 20-something only knows what she knows based on what she’s seen and what she’s been taught and what she’s told. I had shitty parents and a horrible family. Just terrible. These people had no business having children. None of them. And a lot of our families are like that. And we may pass down those familial curses.

*This interview has been edited and condensed

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