Sex and Psychology Podcast

Step into the sex lab

The Sex and Psychology Podcast, hosted by Kinsey Institute Research Fellow Dr. Justin Lehmiller, is here to help you understand the most important sex organ in the entire body: your brain. Each episode offers a deep dive into the psychology of sex and relationships, drawing upon expert interviews and Dr. Lehmiller’s extensive body of research. The Sex and Psychology Podcast is the sex ed you never got in school–and won’t find anywhere else. Catch up with the latest episodes below, and subscribe on your favorite podcast platform to keep up to date.

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Latest Episodes

October 15, 2021

Episode 56: Where Do Sexual Fetishes Come From?

People can develop sexual fetishes for virtually anything. In fact, it’s not a stretch to say that if you can think of it, somebody probably has a fetish for it. So why is that? How do fetishes develop in the first place? Are some people more likely to develop them than others? And what role does porn play in all of this? For the answers to these questions, I spoke with Dr. Jim Pfaus, a researcher in behavioral neuroscience in the Department of Psychology and Life Sciences at Charles University in Prague and with the Czech National Institute of Mental Health. Jim has conducted some fascinating research on animals that sheds important light on how fetishes might develop in humans. His studies show that rats can learn to associate sex with everything from articles of clothing to specific odors (including very aversive smells). Some of the topics we explore in this episode include:
  • What does it mean to have a sexual fetish?
  • How can learning theory help to explain the development of fetishes?
  • How do people’s early sexual experiences affect their sexual turn-ons?
  • Are some people more predisposed to developing fetishes than others?
  • In what ways does pornography shape our sexual interests?
  • How has porn (and what kind of porn people find to be arousing) changed over time?
This podcast was made on Zencastr. Join Zencastr today and receive 40% off of their professional plan for 3 months with my exclusive discount code: sexandpsych *** Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on FacebookTwitter, or Reddit to receive updates. You can also follow Dr. Lehmiller on YouTube and Instagram. Listen and stream all episodes on AppleSpotifyGoogle, or Amazon. Subscribe to automatically receive new episodes and please rate and review the podcast! Credits: LEGIT Audio (Podcast editing) and Shutterstock/Florian (Music). Image created with Canva; photos used with permission of guest.

October 8, 2021

Episode 55: Sex, Pleasure, Consent, and the Intimate Lives of Teens Today

Today’s youth are facing a complicated landscape when it comes to sex. They live in a world where sex is all around and porn is more easily accessible than ever before, but they’re not being educated about it and they’re receiving a lot of mixed messages. So are young adults getting what they want out of sex and relationships? What do their intimate lives look like? And what can parents and schools do to better support them? For insight into these questions, I spoke with Peggy Orenstein, author of The New York Times best-sellers Boys & Sex and Girls & Sex. Her TED Talk, “What Young Women Believe About Their Own Sexual Pleasure,” has been viewed over 5 million times. Peggy conducted in-depth interviews with dozens of teens and college students about their intimate lives for her recent books, and the results were fascinating. Some of the topics we explore in this episode include:
  • How do today’s youth define the terms “sex” and “virginity?”
  • Young women today have been empowered in many ways compared to generations past, but that doesn’t seem to be translating into sexual empowerment. Why is that?
  • Why does pleasure need to be a central focus of sex education? How does sex ed need to change more broadly?
  • How are young people today navigating conversations around consent?
  • How do young men feel about “hookup culture?” Is hookup culture disenfranchising everyone?
  • How are LGBTQ youth faring in all of this?
  • How can parents have more effective and productive conversations about sex with their kids?
To learn more about Peggy and her work, visit peggyorenstein.com

This podcast was made on Zencastr. Join Zencastr today and receive 40% off of their professional plan for 3 months with my exclusive discount code: sexandpsych

***

Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit to receive updates. You can also follow Dr. Lehmiller on YouTube and Instagram.

Listen and stream all episodes on Apple, Spotify, Google, or Amazon. Subscribe to automatically receive new episodes and please rate and review the podcast!

Credits: LEGIT Audio (Podcast editing) and Shutterstock/Florian (Music). Image created with Canva; photos used with permission of guest.

October 1, 2021

Episode 54: How To Have Better Sex And Deal With Sexual Difficulties

Sexual difficulties are common, but people tend to have a really hard time talking about them. In fact, people often find it easier to avoid the subject entirely, which can lead sex to disappear in a relationship. So how can people start healthy and productive conversations about sexual difficulties? What can they do to address them? And whether sexual difficulties are present or not, how can you have better sex?

For insight into these topics and more, I spoke with Jeff Abraham, CEO of the company Absorption Pharmaceuticals. Jeff built a successful tech company that allowed him to retire early—but he later emerged from retirement to run a sexual health company founded by urologist Dr. Ronald Gilbert, who developed a product called Promescent designed to help men last longer in bed.

Some of the topics we explore in this episode include:

  • We’ve all heard that “sex sells,” but does it really? What are some of the challenges of running a sexual health and wellness company?
  • How long does it usually take men and women to orgasm? What is the size of the orgasm gap?
  • What counts as “premature ejaculation” anyway?
  • Why is it that premature ejaculation sometimes gets misdiagnosed as erectile dysfunction?
  • How do you bring up the topic of sexual difficulties with a partner, whether you’re the one experiencing a difficulty or your partner is?
  • Is there anything that men can do to last longer in bed?
  • What do both men and women need to know about having better sex?

To learn more about Jeff and his company, visit promescent.com

This podcast was made on Zencastr. Join Zencastr today and receive 40% off of their professional plan for 3 months with my exclusive discount code: sexandpsych

***

Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit to receive updates. You can also follow Dr. Lehmiller on YouTube and Instagram.

Listen and stream all episodes on Apple, Spotify, Google, or Amazon. Subscribe to automatically receive new episodes and please rate and review the podcast!

Credits: LEGIT Audio (Podcast editing) and Shutterstock/Florian (Music). Image created with Canva; photos used with permission of guest.

September 22, 2021

Episode 53: Everything You Think You Know About Sex Is Probably Wrong

Have you ever heard that there are 8,000 nerve endings in the clitoris, or that the clitoris has twice as many nerve endings as the penis? These statements appear as facts in countless social media posts, news articles, and books. There’s just one problem with them, though—they’re wrong. It turns out that so many of the things we think we know about sex and that we hear repeated over and over just aren’t true.

That’s why this episode of the podcast is all about what we don’t know about sex. To help us set the record straight, I spoke with Dr. Lisa Dawn Hamilton. She is an associate professor of Psychology at Mount Allison University in Sackville, where she teaches about sex, gender, and neuroscience. Lisa Dawn also has a fantastic podcast called Do We Know Things? that corrects common misconceptions about sex.

Some of the topics we explore in this episode include:

  • What is the G-spot, really?
  • Do we actually know what the average penis size is?
  • Can men have multiple orgasms, too?
  • Does peeing after sex really reduce your risk of getting urinary tract infections?
  • What is the real purpose of pubic hair, and how is public hair removal related to STD risk?
  • How do hormones like testosterone and oxytocin really affect us?
  • How do the brains of monogamous and non-monogamous men differ?
  • What’s the connection between sexual arousal and disgust? Why does disgust sometimes become a sexual turn-on?

To learn more about Lisa Dawn and her work, visit doweknowthings.com

This podcast was made on Zencastr. Join Zencastr today and receive 40% off of their professional plan for 3 months with my exclusive discount code: sexandpsych

***

Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit to receive updates. You can also follow Dr. Lehmiller on YouTube and Instagram.

Listen and stream all episodes on Apple, Spotify, Google, or Amazon. Subscribe to automatically receive new episodes and please rate and review the podcast!

Credits: LEGIT Audio (Podcast editing) and Shutterstock/Florian (Music). Image created with Canva; photos used with permission of guest.  

September 17, 2021

Episode 52: Sex Fantasies Around The World

Do people from different cultures have different sexual fantasies? Or are there common threads that run through our fantasy worlds? As someone who studies fantasies, these are questions that have long interested me—and now I have some answers!

During my recent study abroad course on sex and culture in Amsterdam, I met the author of the largest study of erotic fantasies in the Netherlands. He traveled to festivals with a caravan and interviewed hundreds of people about their sexual turn-ons. Needless to say, I had to do a podcast with him!

My guest today is Lucas De Man, an artist, TV host, and CEO of the company New Heroes. In collaboration with psychologist Mariëlle de Goede, he published a book titled Yes, Please! about his work on Dutch sex fantasies, which they are currently expanding to include a worldwide audience.

Some of the topics we explore in this episode include:

  • How do you get people to open up about their sexual fantasies during an interview? And how can you be sure they’re being honest?
  • What do our sexual fantasies tell us about ourselves?
  • How are sexual fantasies similar around the world? How are they different?
  • Why do Americans seem to be more into cuckolding than Europeans?
  • Where do our sexual fantasies come from?
  • What happens when celebrities share their sexual fantasies in front of a live audience? How do you get them to open up, and how does the audience typically respond?

Learn more about Lucas here.

This podcast was made on Zencastr. Join Zencastr today and receive 40% off of their professional plan for 3 months with my exclusive discount code: sexandpsych

***

Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit to receive updates. You can also follow Dr. Lehmiller on YouTube and Instagram.

Listen and stream all episodes on Apple, Spotify, Google, or Amazon. Subscribe to automatically receive new episodes and please rate and review the podcast!

Credits: LEGIT Audio (Podcast editing) and Shutterstock/Florian (Music). Image created with Canva; photos used with permission of guest.

Let's Collab

Want to be a guest on the Sex and Psychology Podcast, sponsor a podcast, or do you have a question or topic you want to see addressed on the podcast? Send Justin an email to start the conversation.

Email Justin