Episode 7: Sex talk with Reba, The Diva
Sex, pleasure and sexuality as a whole seem to be a sensitive topic. This is doubly so for men of colour.
Ladies and Gentleman, allow me to introduce the lovely Reba, The Diva.
"Reba Corrine Thomas is a professional actor, producer, sexuality educator and consultant based in Washington, DC. Reba discovered her passion for the arts at the tender age of 8-- starring in numerous locally and regionally acclaimed classic musical theatre productions. In 2009, Reba began her career in independent film serving as creative director for several music video productions, as well as lead and supporting talent in several independent web series in Washington, DC and Atlanta, GA.
In 2015, Reba began successfully hosting a series of pleasure-positive sexual education workshops in D.C. and was determined to realize her dream of becoming a full-time entertainer and entrepreneur. After an unexpected lay-off in 2017, Reba walked away from her 8-year career as a fundraising and development officer in the nonprofit sector in pursuit of that dream. Specializing in independent film, sexual health education and marketing/communications, Reba is presently the founder and CEO of Sexpert Consultants LLC, a direct sales company that offers educational entertainment with a focus on sexual health; and co-founder of 38 Creative Media Group, a boutique public relations agency specializing in communications, marketing and brand development.
Reba is an ambassador for the American Sexual Health Association (ASHA) and through her work at Sexpert Consultants LLC is committed to promoting sexual health awareness among adults of all ages. She attended Howard University and has received specialized sexual health education training from Indiana University's Center for Sexual Health Promotion.
Reba is married to her best friend, chef and soulmate, and together they have a beautiful blended family with several kids. In her free time, Reba loves to entertain-- working on multiple projects in audiobook production, independent film, music production and theatre. Reba's work can be found on NPR, iTunes, Audible, YouTube and SoundCloud." - RebaTheDiva.com
Let's kick it:
Reba is a Pleasure Professional. Now, this is something you don't hear often. So let me stop right here and give my guest Reba a big shout out for doing her thang and living her best life. For those of you who immediately thought about porn when you read the "pleasure professional", I want to say I'm not here to judge today. But no, she's the other kind of professional.
Now, you might be wondering why I had Reba on the show, considering what Apparently With Mr Ganda is all about. For those who have no idea what I'm talking about or are just joining or listening to the show for the first time (welcome and thank you by the way), this podcast is all about exploring life's un-cut moments. What do I mean by this, well, this podcast is interested in shedding light on all the extra shots you took before finally getting that Instagram-worthy picture.
Fine, I'll break it down more. By Instagram-worthy picture, I'm talking about your come-up, success, glow-up, blessings, reaching your goals, or whatever you call it. I guess you may have figured out that the extra shots equate to the journey. Okay, now that's out of the way, let's get back to Reba and her awesomeness.
I wanted Reba to come on the show to address a problem we as black folks have been facing for centuries; sex, pleasure, and sex education. There, I said it and I'm not taking it back. While this episode like all my other episodes applies to the lives of all my kinfolk out there, I wanted to focus on the brothers. Now, whether you want to accept it or not, there's this fear that black men have when it comes to discussing sex and pleasure.
By the way, shout out to Cove DC at Capitol Hill for having us in the building for this episode. If you are ever in the DC area and are looking for a workspace to work out of, check them out (I'm not being paid for this, but I won't refuse a free few months if they offer).
#FBF #TBT #Throwback
Reba was gracious to jump into the Kulture Time Machine #KTM (you can use my tag but don’t claim it) with this hunk of West African dark chocolate into her past. Was that too much? I asked her to take me back to when she was 15 years old.
Guess what, Reba met her husband at fifteen. Now, you mums and pops must have been livid. Hold on, step on the breaks...she did not get married at fifteen. Okay, fast forward 15 years later, they are happily married with a kid of their own.
Look, I'll be honest with you and tell you that a lot of juicy details were revealed by myself and Reba during our travel back in time. But you won't believe me. So you just have to listen to the episode yourself. Did you really think I was going to sit here and transcribe the entire episode for you? I'm actually testing out one of those transcribing software but till then, this is what you get.
You don't believe me about the juiciness of this episode, how about this, Reba talks about her first experience with sex and intimacy. Yup, that's right. She was in love with this guy and wanted to...gotcha, you'll have to listen for yourself.
For The Culture:
Now, this is the point where I started throwing in my teacher voice. It's a good feeling to know that there's a sister out here like Reba, doing her thing and educating the community not just about pleasure but also safe sex. We all know that's important.
So the first lesson Reba had for us was this, "stop comparing yourself to other people." Oh, she wasn't done, she then followed up with this, "what's normal is what you feel." People, I can't even begin to make up the gems that Reba dropped during this episode. She has been given the title of Resident Sex Expert for Apparently With Mr Ganda. Okay, maybe not yet, but I intend on making it official soon.
Here is the link to the study Reba talked about on this episode; What Do Women Say? A few months ago, she also shared an article with me about the idea of shame when it came to sex and pleasure. This article explores how our brains link sex with shame. This is so relevant especially within our community because we shame others and in turn ourselves for discussing sex out loud.
"destigmatising and normalising conversations about sex" - Reba C.
I am just glad for people like Reba and podcasts like Cocktales: Dirty Discussions Podcast by the ladies Kiara "Kiki" Alexandra and Medinah Monroe. Again, the common factor in all this is the Black sister. Fellas, all bragging aside, we avoid so many sensitive topics because we either don't want to admit we know very little or do not want to be judged. Take the topic of mental health for the Black man for example...sorry people, I just got in my feelings for a sec there (no Keke I don't want to know if you love me).
As always, I ask my guest how you can connect with them and share that information with you. So if you would like to connect with Reba, The Diva, you can do so by visiting her website and signing up for her newsletter at www.rebathediva.com. She's @RebaTheDiva on Instagram and Twitter. Go ahead and signup for her online courses if you don't feel comfortable attending an in-person class. Reba is based in the Washington DC area so if you are ever in the area, check her out.
Until the next episode, I'll leave you with these sage words from my guest, "Don't use aloe on your sensitive parts" - Reba C. 2018
All photo credits: Reba The Diva official site.