“I am not driven by society—I am driven by the righteousness of my love for my family and myself, and if you want a piece of this body, you better love it too. You’re going to call me fucking ma’am!”
Sexuality, Pleasure, and Relationship Coach Jennifer Zurba has studied human sexuality over the past 15 years while furthering a mandate of sex positivity, inclusion, ethical non-monogamy, and sexual self-esteem.
On March 8, Zurba and the VIU Student Organization for Social Change (SOSC) held a Sexuality Matters workshop on campus, which filled the room with both students and members of the community eager to learn about sex positivity.
Zurba grew up in a Mennonite community, but, now 43, she takes the idea of gender out of the box and identifies as pansexual and polyamorous—which means she has the ability to love multiple people. She now has two children and is married to a man.
Zurba uses her personal experiences and feelings toward sexuality to illustrate each of her lessons and highlight the fact that there is no one right answer when it comes to sexuality. Using a vibrantly crude form of teaching that included flirting, (consensual) spanking, a table of sex toys, and giant stuffed genitalia, Zurba captivated the audience and allowed for an open platform where everyone could voice their questions, opinions, and concerns.
“I use words like cock, pussy, ass, and fuck when I do these workshops,” she said before beginning the lessons, symbolizing how she clearly steps away from the dryness of high school-esque sex-ed classes.
During the workshop, Zurba covered a wide span of sexual topics. She touched on the idea of gender, teaching her children about sexuality, consent, anatomy, polyamory, BDSM, safe sex practices with multiple partners, and, of course, pleasure.
When it came to her own children, she recalled when her son, now six years old, discovered his first erection. “I just said, ‘Oh my god! That is awesome!’ And then told him to go play with it in his room,” Zurba said. Zurba described this as an example of using sex positivity to allow her son to be open about discovering himself. “Teaching kids about sex is about balancing boundaries and desires,” she said.
Highlighting the details of consent, Zurba used her experience working at a sex party. One man happened to fall asleep on a couch, and, since sex party rules state this is not allowed, Zurba approached him, thinking he opened his eyes and saw her. She decided to wake him by playfully tickling him on his inner thighs—but he was still fast asleep, and was mortified by her actions. “I was over confident in myself and my qualifications,” she said. Using this as a teaching moment, Zurba explained how even accidental non-consensual actions must be followed by immediate apology, offers of support, and respect.
On pleasure, Zurba used anatomy demonstrated on larger-than-life models to offer advice. She also explained how casual encounters can be “amazing if you know how to practice safer sex and communication, and you know your body.” Building on this, she highlighted online sexual checklists to help partners further explore themselves, and the ways in which she has taught people who have lost pleasure to find it again.
From coaching people who have lost the use of their legs to use a row machine in order to penetrate their partner, to an 80-year-old recently widowed woman how to masturbate for the first time, Zurba showed that sexuality can matter for everyone.
Her final message was one of self-discovery and confidence that goes beyond sexuality. “Your best intimate relationship is with yourself,” she said.
SOSC and Zurba plan to hold more sexuality workshops at VIU in the future. Contact SOSC at email@example.com for details and questions. To learn more about Jennifer Zurba, her workshops, and initiatives, she requests you message her on her personal Facebook.