I was really angry that my dad would do something like that to my mother. And then I realised you can love two people at the same time. 


An interview with Naomi.

Artwork by Merve Iseri.

Artwork by Merve Iseri.

Naomi | Age: 27 | Location: London, UK | Occupation: Classical singer | No. of sexual partners: 3

Why did you take part?

Sex is very taboo so it’s good to talk about it. 


What events in your life shaped your sexuality? What’s your story?

When we left Vietnam my dad stayed behind. In theory to work but actually to be with his lover. My mum knew the whole time but it was kept away from us. When my mum found out that his lover lived with him at our home back in Vietnam it was the last straw. I was really angry that my dad would do something like that to my mother. And then I realised you can love two people at the same time. 

I’m quite a shy person but quite aware of my sensuality. I was brought up with mostly Vietnamese values. I had to be home before 10 till I was 18 or my mum would freak out. I think that’s why it’s so much work for me to network even today. Maybe one day it will come more naturally. I met my current partner when I was 18. I fell in love with other people while with him. It’s bad, but he’s oblivious. It’s painful to fall in love. I never want to hurt him or the other people. They’re normally short but intense relationships. I have been thinking lately that maybe I need to be alone for a bit. I was very young emotionally when I met him. He’s 6 years older and I used to put him on a pedestal. He’s British and had a different outlook to what I was used to. He believed that people should be independent from the time they were 18. He would be out a lot playing music and my family was upset that I was out late with him. Back in Vietnam people who go out are misled. My parents are in America where it’s normal to do that but not for them. There was a lot of tension. My partner would get upset about staying in. My family would get upset when we’d be out. They wouldn’t talk to him or me for a while. I’m very competitive in singing, which requires a lot of focus but I couldn’t do that because of the stuff that was happening in the relationship and in the family. I started having panic attacks one day and that took me out for 6 months. I couldn’t leave the house. I had to see a psychiatrist for 2 years to get out of that. When that happened my partner freaked out because his ex was suicidal. He picked up and left for Miami. That made me stronger but also resentful. After 8 months he wanted to stay on but came back because I gave him an ultimatum. There’s still repercussions. I was really resentful. He was partying when I was sick. He’s charming to women and that made me insecure. I tended to imagine what he could be doing, it was bad. He felt guilty and followed me to London partly because of that. It’s difficult for him to be here so now I feel guilty.

It was when he went to Miami that I started to be with other people. I just meet them randomly. My last lover really affected me. This last time I really fell. He is a bit younger. He was ok knowing that I was with someone. But eventually he fell too and didn’t want me to be with someone else. There’s a lot of pain for both of us. Right now he’s giving me up till July to leave my partner. The tricky part is I’m engaged. We'lI have an engagement party in 3 weeks. Bit of a clusterfuck. I tried to pull the plug but my partner said we should go on because of the families. I don’t feel like I’ve been open and feel stuck. I’m in denial but I said that I need to move out for a while so that I can be with myself. He said it made sense even if it’s weird. I don’t know what I’ll do with the other person but I really miss him. I feel very guilty. I started being cold and short, trying to distance myself and sabotage things with both of them. 


What does sex mean to you?

Right now just difficulty. I can’t enjoy it because of all the emotions. 


What’s difficult about sex?

Being able to achieve an orgasm. I don’t allow myself to let go. I find it hard to feel vulnerable or open. It takes a long time and I’m often thinking or observing what the other person is doing. My partner is great in bed but he’s not expressive. He tries to make me orgasm. Sometimes I wonder if he’s doing it out of duty. 


What do you most enjoy about sex?

Not sure right now. 


Do you orgasm?

Yes. From clitoral. If my partner can last long enough it’s most of the time. 


How often do you have sex?

With partner maybe once a week. With my lover often. 


Do you masturbate?

Depends how stressed I am. The more stress I have the more I do it. I use my hands, sometimes fantasise. Funny enough I think about having two men.


How do you see female sexuality portrayed in the society?

I don’t understand why it’s ok for men to sleep with many people but less so for women. Some of my male friends are shy and feel almost ashamed of how few girlfriend they’ve had. With women it’s just the opposite. The more virgin you are the better you look. 


What’s your advice to women?

I’ve lived quite conservatively. If i were to go back, and liked someone, I’d just sleep with them now. 


What’s your advice to men?

I need to feel that a man really wants it and me badly. 


Is there anything you want to explore?

More emotional connection and expression in bed. I like it when people talk dirty in bed. I like to see the other person lose control and inhibitions.