Updated: Sep 23
COME AS YOU ARE was published in 2015 by Simon & Schuster. It promises to teach the reader why and how female sexuality works based on the latest research and brain science.
Having just finished the book, I can say that it spreads the important and controversial message that you are normal and you belong.
This book is repetitive at times. However, I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing. It addresses how the messaging we all received growing up resulted in women feeling inadequate about their bodies when it doesn’t react “how it’s supposed to,” but science is finally proving how there is no “supposed to.” We’re all turned on by different circumstances. Our brains process arousal in different ways. We don’t even climax the same way. Everyone experiences pleasure in their own unique way. And that’s a message worth repeating.
While new science is included, it’s important to note that she is writing as a therapist and not as a researcher. The data she chose to include serves to encourage women to think past societal brainwashing when it comes to our sex life. The couples she “interviews” for the book are fictional and supposed composites of past clients. At times, their reactions seem cartoonish and frustrating, but they do get her point across.
Overall, COME AS YOU ARE is an uplifting read for women that’s backed up by facts. It’s the go-to book to begin re-framing how you approach sex and relationships.
Emily Nagoski started her career as a sex educator in 1995. She’s now earned a Ph.D. in Health Behavior with a concentration in human sexuality. Nagoski taught graduate and undergraduate classes in human sexuality, relationships and communication, stress management, and sex education. She now travels to educating people about the science and art of sexual wellbeing.