Balance of Sexuality and Spirituality

It can be difficult to find the balance between healthy sexuality and flourishing spirituality. You may feel as if being healthy sexually leaves you feeling as if you are slacking spiritually. But why can’t you have both? It’s possible, even important, to find a way to be connected to your higher power and still be connected to your body. It’s uncomfortable to feel as if you must choose between having a healthy sexuality and being comfortable with your body and physical affection but then feeling as if you are letting your higher power “down,” or being connected to your higher power but then feeling shame or guilt around sexuality and sexual experiences. Can’t there be a way to have both?

This is a journey each individual has to take for themselves. Everyone will have different thoughts and feelings on this topic. The goal is not to choose one or the other, but to instead have a balance that works for your life. Each person has different values and morals and their interpretations of what they want for their life, their mind and their body. There doesn’t need to be any judgement on yourself or others while you experience this journey. I would encourage people to start self reflecting based on their wants and needs physically, spiritually, and emotionally.

If you are one who has always been connected to your higher power but yet feels shame and guilt around your sexuality or your body then maybe it is time to process those feelings. Take the time to understand where these feeling stem from and how to move forward to a place where you can have a healthy sex life with yourself and with your partner. It may be a slow process but it is something that can be done.

If you are a sex positive person but feel that makes you unable to connect with a higher power despite feeling a spiritual void in your life, that can be cause for reflection. Sex positivity is not necessarily in opposition to a robust spiritual life, but rather both can, and do, coexist and even complement each other. You can start to understand what has driven those thoughts and how to start the process to change. Again you want to find the balance.

By finding the balance the hope is you do not have to select one or the other. You do not need to stop vibrant, playful, passionate, fun sexual activity in order to connect with a higher power. You also do not need to disconnect from a higher power in order to start having a positive sexual relationship with yourself or a partner.

By finding your own balance the hope is that you can maintain happiness and health not only with your sexuality but also with your spirituality. You can feel connected to your higher power and also yourself. Your wants and needs can be validated and fulfilled without guilt and shame.

–Emily Barlow, LMFT


Emily Barlow is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in North Carolina and a former therapist at Carolina Sexual Wellness Center. To schedule an appointment with any of the therapists at CSWC, call 919-297-8322.

Emily Barlow

Learn more about the author >>

Contact us!

Browse other CSWC blog posts!

Bridging the Gap: Desire Discrepancy and the Role of Sex Therapy

Dive into what desire discrepancy is, how to identify it, and how consulting a sex therapist can provide valuable guidance and solutions.

Sex Talk: A Celebration of Black Women in Sex Therapy

I’m Kimberly, one of the clinical therapists at CSWC, and welcome to my first blog post here! Since this is my first blog post, I wanted to pay homage to two...

“Am I Normal?” & Other Common Worries About Sex

  A question I often get asked when meeting a new client is: “I have ____ issue affecting my sex life. Am I normal?”.  The answer? Yes! Concerns and issues related to...

STIs and Your Right to Pleasure

Life can be stressful when juggling commitments to loved ones, jobs, school, and community. There are many experiences or circumstances that can make enjoying sexual...

Honesty, Vulnerability and Trust…Oh my!

It can be difficult to fully open up to someone. It can be hard to be your authentic self and let someone fully in for fear of not being accepted. When you let someone...

We Should All Be Embodied

I hope you have had the pleasure of listening to WUNC’s Embodied, a weekly radio show hosted by Anita Rao that is “an exploration of our brains and our bodies that...

I Am an Ally, and It’s Not About Me

It’s not about me.  This can sometimes be a difficult awareness to digest at times. In my existence, I always matter. With my level of privilege, my needs, thoughts,...

Your Trans Gender Journey

Good news: we are living in a world where people in the LGBTQI community are finding a voice and are becoming more and more accepted in our society. We are living in a...

The Best of Me

Soulful singer, Anthony Hamilton, penned a song detailing what his partner gets when he offers his best self to her. His melodic voice sang about breakfast in bed,...

Explained: The Dual Control Model of Sexual Response

You may not know this, but when it comes to sex, you have something in common with a car. Now, human sexuality is way more complex than a simple machine and each...