The Passing of Virginia Johnson…

One of the leading pioneers of sex research left us yesterday at the age of 88.  Virginia “Ginny” Johnson and her late husband Bill Masters conducted the largest clinical sex study ever conducted on women in the United States.  Can you imagine the courage it took to conduct an observational study on 700 women and men having orgasms in a laboratory half a century ago in conservative Washington University in St. Louis?  Of the many gifts she left us, the three I appreciate most are:
1. Masters & Johnson (M&J) dispelled the myth created by Sigmund Freud who said clitoral orgasms were an immature sexual response compared to vaginal orgasms.
2. M&J helped us all to understand the four stage human sexual response cycle that those of us who followed have been able to build upon.
3. M&J created Sensate Focus which are a series of sex exercises for couples and individuals that are to a sex therapist what a hammer is to a carpenter.
On October 7, 2013 I have the honor and privilege of moderating a workshop in Denver on Sensate Focus that will be taught by Linda Weiner who worked with Dr. William Masters and Dr. Virginia Johnson back in the 1960’s.
Thank you, Ginny for your enormous impact on our field and for the many lives that you positively impacted.  We are all better clinicians because of you!