Women's Sexualities

   By: Dr Carol Rinkleib Ellison





Generations of Women Share Intimate Secrets of Sexual Self-Acceptance
Photo by Cynthia Sheffer, Sacramento, California

Starting a SEXSA Circle



Many readers of Women's Sexualities find they want to talk about what they are reading and to share and process the memories that are stimulated by the book. One forum for talking with others about sex and each individual's unique sexuality is the Sexual Self-acceptance (SEXSA) Circle.


Starting a SEXSA Circle

1. Who

Decide who be in the circle. Typically a circle will have between four and eight members. Determine if your SEXSA Circle members will be similar in age and life circumstances or inter-generational, of various ages and life situations.


2. Where and When

Decide where and when you will meet. Will you meet always in one central location, or will group members take turns hosting the meetings? Will you meet in person or online? Will you meet once a week or at some other interval? A regular meeting time tends to be easiest for all to remember. Circle sessions are typically between one and three hours; be clear about when your sessions will begin and end.


3. Details

* Will you serve refreshments at your meetings?
* Provide child care?
* Charge a fee? If so, what will it cover?
* You may want to prepare and distribute a list of members' names, addresses, phone numbers, and
   email addresses.


4. Topics

One way to conduct a SEXSA Circle is to organize each session around a chapter in Women's Sexualities. Circle members read the chapter before attending and the discussion centers around the thoughts and feelings the chapter generates. Some of the questions presented for your consideration at the end of each chapter can facilitate such discussions, and in the Resource section that ends the book you will find additional discussion questions for each chapter. One question or topic might be all you would need for a session, or you might select several. Some topics, such as sexual development in childhood sexual trauma, or sexual concerns and problems, could generate a series of discussions.


You might want to select a circle member to select topic questions and lead the discussions, or the lead could rotate from session to session. For some sessions a circle might want to invite a guest facilitator with expertise on the topic to be discussed. SEXSA Circles might also be organized and led by a therapist or group facilitator.