Currently Browsing: Writing
Jul 19, 2014
I didn’t really know what to expect from queer, anarcha-feminist activist and performance artist Diana J Torres’ Vagaculation1 workshop at Forbidden Fruit Thursday night. Or rather, I kind of just expected it to be a class on techniques on how to ejaculate, but it was so much more than that–it was full of real talk about the social and political reasons why women (or people who have a vagina) don’t ejaculate.
Diana began by telling us her story–she’s always been an ejaculator, leaving a “lake on the bed.” For years she thought she was peeing every time she had great sex, but something clicked for her after a time when she noticed a white ring around the puddle she’d left.
She had a feeling that she wasn’t peeing during sex but didn’t know what was happening, so Diana turned to science to try to figure out what was going on with her body, where she found bullshit and sexist ignorance at every turn. At the University of Barcelona, she found scientific diagrams of female anatomy with white space where the female prostate should be. Medical descriptions undermined women’s pleasure, calling the vulva a “secondary characteristic” and the clitoris an “incidental organ” (are you fucking kidding?)
I’d rather have my head cut off than my clit, she said in response to that.
Basically, women’s anatomy that isn’t related to reproduction or hetero sex is undermined or ignored within medicine and ignorance reigns. So much so, that in Spain and Mexico, if you go to a gyno and explain that you think you’re peeing during sex (ejaculating), that they’ll send you to a urologist, and then they’ll remove your prostate to “fix the problem.” Girls as young as 18 have come to Diana’s workshops and have told her about this happening to them. I know that cunt ejaculation is still very taboo, but I had no idea this was happening–it’s beyond infuriating!
You may have noticed by now that I haven’t referred to the “g-spot” so far in this post, and there’s a reason for that. Another thing Diana talked about was what she considers the conspiracy or war against the (female) prostate. She explained that she thinks that Gräfenberg (the man who “discovered” the g-spot) couldn’t just come out and say that women have prostates because of his era, but that everything he discovered pointed to what he found (the g-spot) as being a prostate very similar to men’s prostates.
From that point on, according to Torres, the idea of the g-spot and especially its relation to orgasm was a money making ploy to get people to buy books and products about how to find the g-spot, while at the same time keeping women from actually knowing their bodies. Many of the books about finding the g-spot were aimed at men, as if women can’t find it themselves. In her opinion, the word g-spot is overly femme and misleading because in reality it’s a prostate, and there’s no reason not to call it that.2 She explained that women can get prostate cancer, but that by the time it’s caught it’s often spread and is classified as vaginal cancer, and that the prostate isn’t a gendered thing–there aren’t a lot of differences between male and female prostates.
Her ideas were reinforced by research of other cultures that mention female ejaculation as completely normal. Aristotle, Hypocrates, and Galenus all mentioned cunt ejaculation and the term sperm wasn’t gendered because they didn’t know yet that sperm are only present in male ejaculation. Female ejaculation is also part of a ritual in matriarchal socities called “kachapati” in Uganda, wherein older women teach young women to ejaculate as part of a rite of passage.
So if ejaculation was seen in history as a normal part of women’s sexuality (and is considered normal in some other cultures), what happened? Our western cultures and oppressive religion happened (namely, Catholicism.)
After talking about the ways in which female ejaculation has been systematically ignored, or worse, vilified as something that only whores do, Torres went on to explain how we can GET REVENGE (aka take back our sexuality) by:
-Knowing out bodies better than science does. Mistrust science always.
-Make up for lost time by practicing.
-Spread the word! You don’t have to tell everyone you meet on the street about cunt ejaculation (though that sounds kind of amazing to me.) Tell everyone you care about.
She also shared tips on how to start ejaculating (or become ok with it if there is shame associated with it):
-It’s NOT pee. Repeat this like a mantra. She suggests cumming onto a black sheet so that you can see a white ring around it after it dries as she did, or ejaculating into a container to see that it’s not yellow.
Even though I ejaculate, and I know it’s not pee, I still stick my nose in my come almost every time, just to smell it and remind myself. I’ve also blotted the wetness with toilet paper to check its color. She also suggests checking your pee color right after sex, because if you don’t expel ejaculate, retrograde ejaculation happens and it ends up in the bladder, often changing the color of your pee to white.
-Get over the women are “clean” and their pleasure is “discreet” lies. LIES. LIES. LIES.
-Techniques: Relax right before orgasm instead of contracting, which is usually our reflex. If you do start to ejaculate, push to keep it going. You can’t contract and push at the same time, so if you push, you’ll stop your contracting. She also suggests using fingers (and putting your shoulder into it when your hand gets tired) though personally dildos work better for me. Either way, you can’t usually ejaculate when you have anything big inside of you, so it’ll have to come out at some point.
-Protect your mattress. Get a plastic mattress cover (or if you want to be fancy, a Throe–I don’t know what I would do without mine!) This is actually a health issue, as fungus can grow on a wet mattress and cause health problems.
-Tell partners ahead of time that you might ejaculate. This can serve as a filter for good lovers and will help avoid people who may have unintentionally (or intentionally) negative responses when surprised by vagaculation.
Although her workshop was very different from the one Deborah Sundahl hosted here in Austin a few years ago, the core theme I took away from both of them was the same–that the reasons women don’t ejaculate are mainly psychological.
What does this mean for us though? It’s definitely not as simple as, “Oh, ok, I’ve been told that women are meant to be clean and proper, and that’s BS so I’ll just start ejaculating now!” As Diana said–you’re not going to erase centuries of oppression in one workshop (or one attempt.) It takes time and effort. And it may never happen, and that’s fine. Not being able to ejaculate doesn’t make you any less of a “real women” or a “real feminist.” You aren’t missing mind blowing orgasms if you don’t ejaculate (in fact, ejaculation isn’t even necessarily connected to orgasms at all.)
Another thing I found incredibly interesting during the class was that Diana told us about how once she tried to stop her ejaculation by putting her finger over her urethra, and she still ejaculated. So she looked into it more and discovered there are actually other holes besides the urethra that expel ejaculate–the Skene’s ducts.
This led to an interesting discussion that I started on Twitter. She said you can see the ducts if you pull the labia taught and shine a light directly in front of it. I have yet to see them on my vulva (I need a magnifying mirror stat!) but I am definitely going to explore this.
I could go on and on about the workshop. It was extremely thought provoking, and Diana was in your face and intense and at times hilarious. At first I wondered if I should share the things I learned in this workshop on my blog…since we did pay ($10 which was well worth it) to go to her workshop.
But that is the opposite of what her workshop was about. It was about fighting ignorance and spreading knowledge and breaking through the patriarchal bullshit and owning our sexuality. It was about explaining that the g-spot/prostate isn’t something you need to spend money to find or something mysterious you have to go mining in your vagina for.
And on the flip side–this is by no means an all inclusive explanation of her workshop. I took copious notes, but there was an energy in the class that I can’t explain by just describing her points. I may write more about some of the things she talked about in greater depth because there was so much to think about, and if anyone has questions or thoughts, I’d love to chat.
If you’re in Austin, Diana’s doing two more events this weekend, one tonight (Porno Terrorismo) and one on Sunday (Muestra marrana.) And if you ever get a chance to go to one of her workshops, GO. Just trust me. Also, she’s coming out with a book soon, so I can’t wait to read that.
*Thanks for hosting this awesome workshop Forbidden Fruit!
Jul 16, 2014
e[lust] is a monthly digest of the best sex related writing on the Internet. This month’s edition features my piece “Shame Hurts” as a top post!
Photo courtesy of Chintz Curtain
The only place where the smartest and hottest sex bloggers are featured under one roof every month. Whether you’re looking for sex journalism, erotic writing, relationship advice or kinky discussions it’ll be here at Elust. Want to be included in Elust #60? Start with the rules, come back August 1st to submit something and subscribe to the RSS feed for updates!
~ This Month’s Top Three Posts ~
Of Cocks and Cunts: The Language of Erotica
~ Featured Post (Molly’s Picks) ~
I may never suck another cock, but I’m still
~ Readers Choice from Sexbytes ~
*You really should consider adding your popular posts here too*
All blogs that have a submission in this edition must re-post this digest from tip-to-toe on their blogs within 7
days. Re-posting the photo is optional and the use of the “read more…” tag is allowable after this point. Thank you, and enjoy!
Jul 14, 2014
This week’s edition of HedoVibes includes my review of Violet Blue’s Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fanatasy and features my photo.Photo courtesy of Penny for Your (Dirty) Thoughts
Welcome to HedoVibes, a collection of reviews and giveaways that were posted in the past week or so from around the web. This is a collection of adult product reviews & contests from real reviewers. If you want to be included in the next edition start with the guidelines, then use the submission form.
Want to read more reviews? Check out HedoVibes for a list of the latest reviews and stellar reviewers. You can also follow on twitter for the latest round ups. HedoVibes is also accepting photo submissions for each edition.
Jul 8, 2014
I started reading Violet Blue’s The Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fantasy while on a bus to Houston. A college aged guy sat next to me and asked what I was reading, and when I flipped the book to show him the cover, his tone went from conversational small talk to genuine interest.
“So what’s that about?” he asked.
We chatted about it for a bit, and at one point I gave him the book, which he flipped through, checking out the chapter and section titles like “Fantasies for One (Masturbation, Just Do It)” “Fantasies for Two,” and “Role Play,” and he even stopped and started reading at “Threesomes, Foursomes, and Moresomes.” After a few minutes he returned the book to me, but it had definitely piqued his interest, as I think it would most people!
The Ultimate Guide to Fantasy is quite a claim, so you’re probably wondering, does it live up to its title? And what exactly does this book cover?
Basically, the book discusses how make your sexual fantasies like exploring dirty talk, erotic dancing, group sex, public sex, fetishes, s/m scenarios, and more come true. The book is meant for anyone–it has an easy to read, conversational tone, and it isn’t specific to gender, sexual orientation, or experience level.
Violet Blue doesn’t just give you tips and ideas (although those are aplenty), she provides the practical advice you need, like how to bring it up with a partner, how to plan ahead for the fantasy, how to find props, and how to make sure everything goes as smoothly (or as roughly, depending on your fantasy!) as possible. And at the end of every chapter, there’s a hot story related to the section by well-known erotica writer Alison Tyler to fuel your imagination.
In addition to covering a huge range of fantasies, Violet also covers various options for making that fantasy happen depending on your comfort level. If you and your partner are interested in adding a third to your sex life, for example, Violet offers many different ideas for how to make that come true, from using sex toys & porn in the background to create a “pretend” threesome, to finding someone to actually join your for a hot encounter, to exploring strip clubs, phone sex, call girls, and sex parties.
The Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fantasy is lengthy sex book (at 256 pages), and although you may want to read it cover to cover like I did, I think many people would best enjoy it by exploring a chapter or two at a time, based on what peaks your interest. Some of my favorites chapters were “Threesomes, Foursomes, & Moresomes,” “Strip Clubs, Phone Sex, and Call Girls–for Two,” and “Public Sex.” With all of the taboo that surrounds sex work (and all of the interest for that matter) I’m glad that Violet included it. I’m also glad she included a vital chapter on safer sex practices with protection options and charts with the risks involved in various sex acts.
In certain parts of the book I could tell that it was an updated version of the last edition (2004), like in the DIY porn section (no one uses VHS video cameras anymore, do they?) and in the resources section (Forbidden Fruit only has 1 location now, not 3,) but it was only a few minor things.
After reading The Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fantasy, I’m confident that you’ll feel like the world is your sexual oyster, ripe and ready for you to devour it! I recommend it to anyone who wants to strengthen their sex life–Violet Blue makes learning about all of the possibilities for fantasy fueled sex accessible and exciting.
“Fantasies are your own private, personal sex toys. They send a direct current buzzing from your brain down to your groin. The right sexual fantasy, running in your head like your own private movie, can turn you on like a switch. When you know what works for you, your own vivid imagination can bring you to dizzying heights of arousal–and take you over the orgasmic edge.” — Violet Blue, The Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fantasy
Jul 1, 2014
I’m generally pretty adept at not letting society’s women-shaming, body-shaming, sex-shaming attitudes bring me down. I surround myself with sex positive people, and since I work from home, I don’t encounter as many closed minded people as I used to. I hardly ever see my conservative family, so that’s not usually an issue. Shame still comes from at me in a general sense, but when it’s from ignorant people I don’t care about, it’s just an annoyance.
But when the shame comes from my Mom, it hurts.
I told my Mom about my blog early in its creation. It was probably a mistake, as I was merely stroking my ego (the blog helped me get a job, and that’s initially why I told her about it.) At first she was proud, and while the topic of sex toys isn’t her thing, she didn’t condemn it. We’d discuss it from a business standpoint from time to time, and she never seemed to have a problem with it.
That is, until I started posting nude photos. It started when she emailed me this photo of myself from my blog, along with a frantic “warning” that my images could be copied & posted on billboards and in ads. I saw this as a passive aggressive way of her bringing up my nude photography, said as much about it and that it hurt my feelings, and this was her reply:
Your posting of nude photos of yourself shows a lack of self respect, low self esteem and is really a selfish act , which could embarrass you and your family should these photos be copied and posted in the newspaper, books etc……. And you think I should be concerned about hurting your feelings? This selfish act of YOURS has truly hurt my feelings tremendously….do you really feel like this is what you have to do to get an online following? Isn’t your writing talent enough? Isn’t your photography creative enough without posting nudity?Can’t you sell something besides very initimate pictures of your body? I think you have many other talents, which should be used to get work, not your body.
First of all, I am aware that my posting nude images on the Internet results in a lack of control over the images (though they are copyrighted, and I post them at low resolution, so they can’t be easily posted to billboards, etc. Plus it’s illegal to post nudes without model releases & proof of legal age.)
The real issue here though, is that my Mom sees nudity as shameful. She was fine with me talking about using sex toys on the Internet, but as soon as I posted photos of the body I was born with, I have a “lack of self-respect” and “low self-esteem.”
On the contrary, I post nude photos of myself because I am PROUD of my body and my sexuality, and I no longer feel the need to hide it. Why do people assume that if a woman does nude modeling, exotic dancing, or sex work, that she lacks self-respect? Why is showing a woman’s body considered so horrible? In my case, I post nude photography for artistic self-expression, and I don’t currently do it to gain followers or to make money, but what if I did? Why would that be so wrong? What if I didn’t enjoy nude modeling, and just did it for a paycheck? How is that different from someone working a grilling 9 to 5 they don’t enjoy just to pay the bills?
It’s not. Work related to sex is still just work, it’s just stigmatized because it’s related to sex. There is nothing wrong with choosing to work at a strip club instead of choosing to work a desk job. It’ naive to assume that someone doesn’t like their job just because you don’t like it or wouldn’t like it, and it’s also naive to assume that everyone needs to love their job. Sure, it’s great to do things that fulfill you in life, but if you wouldn’t judge someone for cleaning toilets even if they don’t like it because they need to feed their kids, then why would you judge that same person for being a nude model or a sex worker?
I don’t think sharing any degree of nudity or pornographic imagery is shameful, but the particular photo my Mom was so offended by isn’t even super explicit or pornographic. It shows my breasts. It shows my NIPPLES, heaven forbid. I am deeply offended by the fact that women are expected to hide their breasts, while no one thinks twice when they see a topless man. Contrary to sexist belief, breasts do not exist to sexually temp and titillate men. Yes, the photo I posted was meant to be sexy, but that doesn’t matter. Any photos of women’s nipples are regarded as explicit, even women breastfeeding, regardless of intent, and that is not only unfair, it’s infuriating.
I’ve already written about how I don’t see being open about my body and being a talented, intelligent writer as mutually exclusive. I understand that it would be “safer” for me to not post my nude photography and only focus on my writing, but I enjoy nude photography. And honestly, things will never change if we all play it safe. I respect and admire women like Molly who share intelligent writing as well as erotic imagery because it’s a bold act, women daring to be both smart and openly sexual. I am proud to be one of those women. It comes with consequences, but so would hiding the work I’m proud of. So would going to sleep knowing that I let people with narrow minded views of the world control my life.
I didn’t expect my Mom to jump for joy at my posting nude photography. I don’t think most people want to think about their parents or children’s sex lives. But my posting nude photography does not mean I have a lack of self-respect or low self-esteem. And I think it’s (almost) funny that she considers my naked body as more offensive than me describing my sex life in detail. My body certainly isn’t shameful, and neither is my sex life.
Shaming people for their bodies and sexuality is hurtful. Shaming people because they make different life choices than you is also hurtful. Thankfully my Mom and I have been able to agree to disagree on the subject for the most part (we don’t talk about it anymore), and we still have a semi-decent relationship, but she will always consider what I do less valuable than other work (if not downright shameful and embarrassing.) And that’s part of why I care so much about being open about sex and nudity. With all of the negativity and shame that surrounds sex and nudity in our culture, we are in desperate need of strong, positive voices that declare:
Naked bodies are not shameful.
Sex is not shameful.
Sex is natural.
Bodies are beautiful.
*I wrote this piece in response to the Wicked Wednesday prompt “Shaming…or being shamed.”