Craig VanKempen

Craig VanKempen

Craig VanKempen, LLMSW/MPH, is a sex educator and therapist practicing in the Detroit/Ann Arbor area. His professional interests include HIV, polyamory, compulsive sexual behavior, religion and sexuality, and GLBT issues.

Recent posts

The New Year’s Kiss

For Valentine’s day, my Special Lady Friend and I went through my extensive collection of rom-coms and decided on a classic: When Harry Met Sally.  Wading through the late 80′s fashion, Billy Crystal’s folksy wisdom, and Meg Ryan’s pastrami-plastering fake orgasm, we noted how important the New Year’s Eve kiss was to them and started to wonder how the tradition of kissing your sweetheart at the stroke of midnight got started. Continue Reading →

Everything I Know About Sex I Learned From Star Wars

After Kate’s rocking post about Star Trek, and since I am a huge Star Wars fan, I felt it was my duty to provide the nerdy counterpoint. Rather than just providing a list of quotes from Star Wars that sound dirty but actually aren’t, I decided to take popular quotes from my favorite space opera and let you know how you could use this wisdom to improve your sex life. “These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.”  - Obi-Wan’s Jedi Mind Trick

While the power of your mind may not be able to convince your partner to do just anything, one of the most important things during sex is using your mind to enhance the experience.  While being physically fit is good for your sex life, it’s more important to have the right mindset when going into a sexual relationship.  Many of the most common sexual dysfunctions have to do with differing beliefs and/or emotions between partners.  Just like the lightsaber stuck in the snow in the wampa’s cave, using your mind can help bring you what you want, even if you don’t think you can get there. Continue Reading →

New Ways to Kinect

As a follow-up to the wonderful article on Vagina Hero, I wanted to share this:

Penny Arcade, one of the gamer communities’ flagship webcomics, is at times both hilarious and offensive.  Is also occasionally impenetrable as well, especially if you aren’t versed in gamer speak.  Fortunately, I am more l33t than n00b, so I am able to keep up with at least half of what they say. Continue Reading →

Vampire Sex Toys

I know it’s still a while before the next Twilight movie comes out (November 18th, 2011, <as if you didn’t know>), but it seems like vampires have become a ingrained part of our cultural zeitgeist.  The logical next step, of course, is to bring them into our bedrooms.

One needs to be careful here, or injuries could happen (see this post from Michaela for a cautionary tale).  However, one of the safer ways to bring the bite into the bedroom is through toys.  Here are two sex toys that, depending on your proclivities, you want to either purchase before the next full moon or avoid like a rabid werewolf. Continue Reading →

Michigan Wins at Sex: Trojan Sexual Health Report Card

Trojan® recently released a sexual health report card for US campuses showcasing what they consider the most “sexually healthy” schools.  And, guess what!  University of Michigan and Michigan State were both in the top 5!  Go Michigan schools! The study looked at data from health centers and student opinion polls, looking for availability of contraceptives, STI/HIV testing, and education/advocacy groups, among other things. I’m very proud that Michigan cracked the top 5, mainly due to the hard push that everyone in the health center has been making to make sure Michigan is one of the most sexually healthy colleges in the U.S. Continue Reading →

Polyamory Resources

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and research around non-monogamy and polyamory lately, and wanted to share a few books and resources I’ve found. First, I found this wonderful resource, which is akin to an FAQ for people who are considering polyamory.  It’s written by, so I don’t know if there’s an ulterior motive, but it seems like a very useful resource for people who are questioning their mono-centric culture. Next, my Facebook friend posted this fascinating visual representing the different types of non-monogamy.  Because I appreciate visual representations of data, I really enjoyed thinking about all the different intersections that this explored.  For those who are confused, it is really like a mutant Venn diagram with many different overlaps. Continue Reading →

My Male Sex Ed Heroes

Recently, Susan Wilson wrote a blog post on Sex, Etc. lamenting the lack of male sex educators.  She cited societal pressures, gender norms, and basic discomfort with males and sexuality as the main reasons this disparity exists.  She shared a quote from an administrator who was concerned about male sex educators because they are “teaching to students who are potentially only three to four years younger than they are and in fact ‘datable’ outside of school.” Continue Reading →

Standing Up Against Hate: Chris Armstrong At The University of Michigan

The University of Michigan’s student counsel president Chris Armstrong has been a subject of national attention lately, due to the attacks on him by Assistant Attorney General Andrew Shirvell for spreading his “radical homosexual agenda” on the University of Michigan’s campus.  You can see the interview with this “concerned Michigan alumnus” as linked by MSP here. I was really amazed by the students’ reaction to this on campus, and how it has morphed into a campaign promoting respect on campus. Continue Reading →

Breastfeeding as Birth Control

While this may be common knowledge among those who have beautiful milk-filled breasts, I was surprised recently when breastfeeding was mentioned in one of my workshops as a method of birth control.  After going to the trusty internet, I was amazed at what I found – for 6 months after birth, breastfeeding will be almost as effective as the pill at preventing pregnancy. has the whole story, but here are the basics: Continue Reading →