Celebrating International Women’s Day: Chantelle Otten

March 8th is International Women’s Day. Here we talk to LoveHoney Sexologist, Chantelle Otten, about her thoughts on the global celebration and if it’s actually useful to women.

What does InternationalInternational Women's Day mean to you?

International Women’s Day is about empowering and celebrating females from all walks of life. It’s about uplifting the women around, owning your individual femininity and embracing your sexual happiness and wellbeing. 

What do youyou believe can be done to address gender stereotypes?

We’ve grown up in a patriarchal society that has typically made a lot of rules and regulations around who we are as women and femmes. But it’s time to change this, and to take up space in society. This means challenging standards that are rooted in white privilege, racism, misogyny, fatphobia and ableism. It also means unlearning people pleasing, centering your joy and pleasure, challenging inner misogyny, enforcing boundaries and asking for what you want and wearing what you want.

What progress havehave you seen on gender equality in your life and work?

Femmes are leading the way when it comes to normalising conversations around sex and pleasure. There are so many fabulous femme sexologists and online creators who are really driving awareness and attention to these topics. It’s truly wonderful to see.

What will youyou be doing to celebrate IWD?

My day will be all about talking openly about female empowerment. I will be loud and I will be honest, authentic and vulnerable. I am proud to be a woman.

What are thethe most effective ways to counteract the negative stereotypes of feminism, especially in the workplace?

Ohhhh great question! I think finding a group of friends and allies that are open to debating this topic is great, because then the confidence to be loud and unapologetic will be easier with support behind you. I think it also means saying what you need and want with more gusto. Taking away the ‘sorry’ from your conversations and just doing what you do best whilst calling out bullshit.

What does itit mean for you to be a women leading the sexual wellness space?

I’m so proud to be a leader within the sexual wellness space. My life work is dedicated to always learning, always striving to understand sexuality and to educate those who want to know more. I run the largest Sexology practice in Australia, I’m an author of a best selling sex education book and I work as a brand ambassador with notable companies, helping them improve in the sexual space. I love my job.

Share a women’swomen’s empowerment moment that inspired you?

There are so many. I think that we can all agree the Grace Tame and Brittany Higgens have inspired all of us. I also think that my friends and colleagues, patients and female family members inspire me every day. We have always been taught as femmes to be nice, say please, don’t say no… but my allies have taught me so much about the power in being a femme, and the power of standing up for yourself and I am so grateful!