I'm happy to introduce and feature some amazing Black Sexologists for Black History Month (and always because it's always BHM here and at The LatiNegr@s Project!) This month I will be featuring amazing Black women in the sexuality and sexology field. Each woman featured is also a member of the Women of Color Sexual Health Network (WOCSHN), an amazing space that has given us a connection to one another and ways to network.Please meet Nicole Clark
Each woman featured is not only an amazing provider, educator, therapist, and/or activist, but they are also a part of the WOCSHN Fundraising effort to raise funds to attend AASECT conference this year where we will present our original research and findings. Please consider donating if you can and spreading the word so we can meet our goal!
Why you are in the field, what brought you to the field?
I'm in the sexual and reproductive health field based on personal experience and the overall curiosity to know how a variety of factors (upbringing, physical environment, SES, race, gender, etc.) influence sexual decision making. My personal experiences stem from conversations (or lack of) that I had about sex, sexuality, and relationships with my mother. While it was easier for my mother to focus on having discussions on teen pregnancy, I realized as an adult that we never had an actual conversation about sex and sexuality. I, like many others, had to sit through inaccurate and often boring sex ed classes that were focused too much on abstaining for religious reasons and not on the human need to connect with others in an intimate way and to know how your body works. So, I set out to focus on young people getting the most accurate information on their sexual health as possible (and to help adults have those intimate conversations).
What work do you do, what do you hope to shift/change/work on?
My mission is to improve the health and loves of women and girls of color by infusing my passion and creativity through workshops, speaking engagements, social media, research, program evaluation, and writing. My hope is to empower women and girls of color to know what's happening with their sexual and reproductive health, know how to raise their voices against policies that seek to limit their power over their sexual and reproductive health, and to share this information with their peers.
Ideas of future work for Black women in the field (esp Black sexologists)?
An idea for future work for Black women in the sexuality field is to really focus on the power of storytelling, as a way to connect young women of color to the older generation. While times may have changed, there are many experiences that connect all of us. Together, we can develop empowering ways to change the conversation that can present us in a better light and will enable us to have a deeper understanding on our bodies and how we express our sexualities.
Follow Nicole's work on her personal website.