Dawn Okoro artworkJada Pinkett-Smith is one of my favorite celebrity wives. I love her confidence, candid personality, sex appeal, and fierce dedication to loving her husband. Sitting on Oprah’s couch, she gave a sly smile when the Queen of Daytime Television asked how she keeps her marriage spicy. With her husband sitting next to her, she slides her hand to his knee and replies seductively with numerous examples, but one in particular stood out to me. In the middle of the day, sometimes she’ll snap a “sexy” pic and send it to him just as a reminder of what he has waiting on him. I frankly was surprised. With all the risk that comes with celebrity nude photos leaking onto the Internet, she still prioritized making her husband smirk over a potential PR disaster. And then I thought about all the apprehension that many of us feel when it comes to snapping nude pics and sending them to our partners. It requires a certain level vulnerability for a simple moment of pleasure.

When I made the decision to pose nude for the inaugural cover of my magazine, Corset, I went through a deep process of thinking through the consequences. I love my body, and I’m not ashamed of it. But it’s an entirely different thing to appreciate your body in private versus sharing its gifts with the public. Nudity is still controversial despite the fact that we all come into this world naked, bathe naked, (mostly) have sex naked, and do so many other intimate things in our birthday suits. Hence, why do we hesitate to capture our beauty stripped down of layers? And why wouldn’t we send that natural magnificence to our partners?

It comes down to trust.

Would your partner take this photographic gift and exploit it in moments of anger? Would he or she make a spectacle of your body and vulnerability to his or her friends? Would your naked self end up floating around social networks for unwanted eyes to see?

But frankly, if the answer is yes to any of those questions, you shouldn’t be physically sharing your body with them anyway. So why would we hesitate to be vulnerable in photographing our bodies and sharing it with a partner who has already entered our most intimate parts?

I admire Jada for taking the risk. And I’ve certainly done it myself. Not every man I date gets a naked picture sent to his inbox, but the ones that I’ve made love to and have a certain relationship with do get those small moments of excitement and delight. Interestingly enough, it’s actually made us closer, as being vulnerable and sharing my body in more ways than one have become a testimony to the strength of our relationship. Vulnerability is a catalyst for deeper romance, authenticity, and better sex. So I choose to press send.

Have you ever sent naked or suggestive pics to your partner? Would you?

*Artwork by Dawn Okoro

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