Georgia Grace spends her days debunking misconceptions we have around sex. As a certified sex coach, she works with individuals and couples on a range of concerns or curiosities to help people have more fulfilling sex. Her Insta account has 30,000 followers and Grace often teams up with brands such as Normal and Tom Organic, to help spread the word on what “good sex” should feel like.

“When I tell people I’m a sex coach, they think I’m like a therapist seeing clients back to back. I limit that to one and a half days a week because there are so many other elements I like working in, such as content creation, writing and product development, such as within sex tech.”

Grace studied something called somatic sexology – “that means bringing awareness to the body,” she tells Broadsheet. “I’ve done certifications in somatic sexology, embodied counselling and trauma-informed yoga to take a different approach to looking at sex.” She’s also developed sex-ed courses, runs workshops online, and acts as a sexual wellness advisor to brands.

She’s part of a new panel of professionals giving advice via period product company Tom Organic. The Tom Talks Panel includes Jess Nguyen, Sabina McKenna, Georgia Hartmann and Melissa Mason, who will share their wisdom over blog posts and social media.

“Like sex ed, very little is taught to menstruators about periods and their cycles,” says Grace. “It’s still a bit of a taboo to talk about sex and periods, and I love working in the taboo. Very few of us have had access to sex-positive spaces and education in a positive way. There’s this assumption that sex should be easy and always good, and when it’s not we think something’s wrong.”

Grace shares five common sex-related myths, and why they’re untrue.

“My genitals aren’t normal”
“I see it all the time: people think they are different or somehow not normal because we don’t have access to enough real images of genitalia. People question if they think there’s too much hair, not enough hair, their labia is too big, or not right. The images we’re exposed to, such as in porn, either have a certain type of labia, or no hair, or the penises are really, really big. In almost all cases, your genitals are normal.”

“Period sex is wrong, messy and uncomfortable”
“For some people, when they’re bleeding sex is so far from their mind – they want to curl up and watch a romcom, eat chocolate, and don’t want to have sex – and that’s okay. For others, they might be really turned on during menstruation, and period sex can be really arousing, but there’s still an element of taboo around having sex on your period. We need to get over this hurdle. There’s also evidence that when you climax your body is flooded with hormones and neurochemicals, which can be really beneficial. So, if you have your favourite toy or you have period sex, and you are willing and wanting to do it, it can be very pleasurable.”

“Toys desensitise your genitals”
“This is a really common one that I’m so over. It’s a myth that using sex toys will desensitise your genitals and you won’t be able to experience pleasure. It reminds me of the sex-shame stigma that ‘sex should only be between two people who love each other and anything else is wrong’. You absolutely cannot rub away nerve endings, with or without toys. If you find that you’re not experiencing pleasure as you usually would, or you’re getting used to a certain amount of stimulation, you may want to mix up your masturbation routine or do things differently if you’re not able to find pleasure in the same way.”

“We didn’t have penetrative sex, so we didn’t have sex”
“This is really important to challenge. It’s the idea that you’ve only had sex for the first time or ‘lost your virginity’ (I don’t use that word, as it’s a social construct that talks about ‘taking something away’, instead I use ‘sexual debuts’ as I hope people have many sexual debuts in their life). Sex is a range of experiences – be it oral, mutual masturbation, using toys, a strip tease, sex with strap-ons, having a steamy shower. We leave a whole lot of people out of the conversation when we limit sex to penetration only. Instead, I hope you have many sexual debuts in your lifetime.”

“My partner doesn’t want to have sex, so they don’t love me”
“Stress directly impacts how much you desire sex. Relationships with less desire for sex are totally normal, and we all go through stages in our lives where we have lower desire for sex,” says Grace. “There are many things you can do to have a healthy sex life, and engaging with professional support is part of that depending on your circumstances. It also loops back to the idea of redefining sex beyond penetration, such as having a massage, masturbation or other ways to connect. The amount of sex you are having is no indication of how loving or healthy your relationship is.”