Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at www.sexualhealth.indiana.edu.

Recent posts

How a Therapist Can Ease Your Separation or Divorce

Aside from Ice-T and Coco (who will always hold a special place in my heart as she and I were both stalked by the same strange man), I seem to be encountering so many breakups, separations, and divorces these days in my personal and professional spheres, not to mention the readers I hear from on a regular basis. Some of these endings are going fairly smoothly. Ohers have taken ugly turns. It doesn’t have to be this way. When a marriage or committed partnership (especially one that’s involved two or more people living or raising children together) comes to an end, it’s common for people to call an attorney. Continue Reading →

My Non-Thing Holiday Gift Guide

Recently, two friends and a few readers have asked if I’m planning to pull together a sex-themed gift guide. We’ve done this in the past and may do so again this year. I’ve heard from people who have bought the books, art, and sex toys we’ve suggested and their relationships and/or orgasms have been the better for it, so that’s encouraging. Certainly, books and sex toys can make a difference in a person or a couple’s sex life, relationship, or marriage – especially when they are chosen with thought. But, these days, my heart and mind are elsewhere. As holiday shopping emails arrive in my Inbox at an ever-feverish pace, my eyes scan for the “unsubscribe” link and I disengage from all but my favorite stores. Continue Reading →

Who “Owns” Information about the Clitoris?

Apparently the Museum of Sex (an interesting place) has a blog. I learned about their blog because, on it, they have a post titled “How Cosmo Stole the Clitoris” in which it’s suggested that Cosmo writer Jessica Knoll “stole” aspects of her article from a MoSex blog post. Not only that, but the blogger who wrote the post – Julie Ruvolo – suggested that either I was misquoted in the Cosmo article (I was not) or I was “in on it” (I was not “in” on anything except that I agreed, as I do several times per week, to be interviewed on sexuality topics for a magazine). Ms. Ruvolo never contacted me to ask about the Cosmo article or anything else pertaining to this article. She didn’t fact check with me. Continue Reading →

Vibrator Research Study – Looking for Participants!

Our Indiana University research team is currently recruiting 18+ year old, male/female monogamous couples into a study about vibrator use. Participants will receive vibrators in the mail and will earn gift cards for participating in the study. You can learn more below and at the study website. – Debby



Our research team at Indiana University is recruiting heterosexual, monogamous couples between the ages of 18 and 50 to participate in a study related to the daily sexual experiences of couples who use vibrators. Most research to date has focused on sexual behaviors and perceptions on rates of vibrator use within the US. Continue Reading →

A Vibrator Researcher Checks out the Vibrator Movie, Hysteria

Being something of a “vibrator researcher” (see here, here, here, and here for starters), it’s perhaps not surprising that I wanted to see Hysteria – the new so-called “vibrator movie” – as soon as I could. Fortunately, it was playing nearby at the IU Cinema (a beautiful venue for watching films). The verdict? I enjoyed Hysteria. I went for escapist fun and it delivered. Continue Reading →

Genitals in the Wild: The Washington Monument Edition

While eating dinner with a few friends at Scholars Inn, a friend was flipping through the photos on his phone and came across one he’d taken on a recent trip to Washington DC. As he put it, he didn’t mean for this image of the Washington Monument to turn out as phallic as it did, but his finger happened to get in the way thus making the Monument and little more penis-like and his finger a little scrotum-like. Naturally I was thrilled that he was willing to share his photo for our MSP Genitals in the Wild series. (Thanks, B!)

Follow the author of this post ( @DebbyHerbenick ) on Twitter and keep up with MSP posts by following us all @MySexProfessor Continue Reading →

Seven Sex and Vagina Lessons from Sarah Silverman’s Twitter

In a country with very little sex education, I think it’s great that Sarah Silverman (who I follow on Twitter) is around to keep the masses educated. If you follow her @SarahKSilverman, you too can learn the following sorts of things about sex:

1. Vulvas are diverse in their beauty. They are also sometimes called “vaginas” by most people (including Sarah) and that’s probably okay. And while it’s possible that Sarah Silverman – who my Read My Lips: A Complete Guide to the Vagina and Vulva co-author and I once gave vulva-themed “muff”ins to * before her show at IU – may mean that her vagina (vaginal canal) has “off-beat good looks,” I think it’s a more likely scenario that she is referring to her vulva (the outside parts) in the following Tweet:


2. Continue Reading →

Zombies and Your Love/Sex Life

When Kate alerted me to the coincidental zombie posts she and Jeana had written for today – and how they’d named it “Impromptu Zombie Theme Day” – I had to join the fun. Though I’m not personally into zombies, I can appreciate the idea of zombies and have enough of an interest to have apparently stored several memories of zombie-related things to share with you. For example:

1. I remembered seeing these Zombie Engagement photos taken by Amanda Rynda. I love that this couple decided to celebrate their engagement in their own way and with humor and style rather than a typical engagement photo session. Continue Reading →

Welcome Kate – Our New Editor!

Dear MSP Readers,

It’s difficult to believe that about 4 1/2 years ago, I started a little blog called MySexProfessor.com as a way to connect with readers of my various sex columns. I wrote about sex topics in the news, answered readers’ sex questions, reviewed various sex toys, and occasionally buried defunct sex toys in the yard and wrote about them in a “Sex Toy Cemetery” series. Recently, however, I’ve become increasingly busy. As many of you know, by day I’m a research scientist at Indiana University’s Center for Sexual Health Promotion and a sexual health educator for The Kinsey Institute. I also write books about sex and love. Continue Reading →