In the blogging/social media age, it’s hard not to look at other people’s lives and compare them to yours. I try not to, but I do it. I think things like, I wish I made more money like —, I wish I was as popular as — blogger, I wish I was as pretty as —, as confident as —, as successful as —. But we all censor our lives for the Internet. We choose what we want to share. Everything looks better through an Instagram filter or sounds better when you’ve carefully thought out your words.
From the outside, my life as a sex blogger probably seems pretty glamorous. I’m a nympho, right? I’m sexy and confident, right? My partner and I fuck like bunnies, right? I’m rolling around in free sex toys, right? I get paid to masturbate, right?
Not exactly. Not at all, really. I think it’s time to let you in on some of my truths:
1. I’m not a nympho.
I like sex. I love sex toys. I believe in the power of self pleasure. I am open about my sexuality. But I am not an insatiable sex machine. Just because I write about sex, that doesn’t mean I’m always horny or that I always feel sexy. I’m a “normal” person. I get sick. I get moody. I bleed. I cramp. Sometimes I feel really down. Sometimes I get yeast infections. Sometimes I just don’t feel like sticking anything in my butt. Or my vagina. Sometimes I forget to take care of myself. Sometimes my partner and I don’t have sex for a week. Or two. We’ve been together for 6 years. We still have to work at it.
2. I don’t always feel confident and sexy.
I’m proud of myself and my body. I’ve told body shame to go fuck itself. I love my boobs. I love my curves. I try to work out occasionally for health and sanity’s sake, but I’ve given up on looking “perfect.” But that doesn’t mean I don’t have those days when I feel ugly. When I breakout from stress. When my curves seem less curvy and more…blah. When I don’t feel pretty enough. When I don’t want to wear makeup, but I feel gross without it. When I start making a mental list of everything that I could do to look better. When I feel like I should stop eating pizza or hell maybe grains altogether (before I quickly come to my senses…pizza.)
3. I self edit. A lot.
I don’t change my body shape with Photoshop or anything drastic, but I reserve the right to remove zits or pick only the photos I feel sexiest in. My photography is one way I celebrate and take control of my body, and I get to choose which photos I share. So although I do post artistic photos and some photos without make up…you don’t really see me at my worst. I don’t wake up with wing tip eyeliner.I don’t always stand in an S shape. I edited out the rash I got on my ass when I was rolling around in the grass shooting nudes. It happens. Photography is an art form, and for the most part, I work really hard on every single photo.
4. I don’t get paid to masturbate.
I don’t get paid to use toys or write reviews. I make some money through affiliate programs associated with my reviews, but it’s not a lot, and it’s not guaranteed. I would not be able to live the way I do and focus on my blog if it weren’t for the support of my amazing partner. It’s a labor of love. But it is labor. I have plans to improve my blog business/income wise, and I have faith in myself…but it’s not easy.
5. The toys I get aren’t free
I am grateful to have a nice collection of toys, and companies do send them to me for “free,” but they aren’t actually free. I have to use them. Usually that’s awesome and obviously the point…but I have to use them even if they don’t seem like they’ll ever fit into my butt, even if they feel like they’re poking my insides, even if they make me shit. I also have to review them, and it takes a lot of work. See #6.
6. Sex blogging is hard work
I don’t just masturbate all the time and write about it. I don’t just snap quick nude selfies. I take copious notes after masturbating. I am constantly on social media. I write. I write. I rewrite. I rewrite. I edit. I edit again. I photograph toys. I photograph myself. I think really hard about where to position my camera, and what lighting to use, and how to pose. I spend hours editing cat hair and dust off of silicone dildos. I do my best to coordinate Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc. I fix broken links. I answer emails. Long story short: I work hard on every post, and I spend even more time promoting my work and doing behind the scenes stuff.
7. It’s not just a hobby
I’ve been at this for 3 years now. This isn’t just some hobby to me, at least not anymore. I invest a lot of my time and effort into my blog. This is my main focus in life.
8. It still isn’t socially acceptable
When it’s all done, and my review/photograph/etc. is finally posted, I don’t get that many comments, especially compared to other types of blogging and how many views I get. A lot of people don’t want their names associated with a sex blog. I can’t bring what I do up with family or around certain people. A lot of people still don’t take me seriously.
9. The world is mostly sex negative
Most of the people I meet think it’s awesome that I write about sex, because I tend to hang out in circles where it’s acceptable or encouraged. All of my friends are supportive, thank gob. I’ve met some truly amazing friends and bloggers at conventions and sex shops. I appreciate every comment, every message, every encouraging word. But I still exist in a mostly sex negative world. And my Mom will never stop trying to shame me for what I do. Thankfully she doesn’t bring it up explicitly anymore, but she still sneaks in comments. She doesn’t support my “lifestyle.” I try not to dwell on it, but it still hurts. It’s frustrating.
10. I have doubts
I love what I do, and I think I’ve made a difference in a lot of people’s lives and hope to continue to do so. Most of the time I know in my heart that I’m doing the right thing. But I have my doubts. I worry about if I’ve made the right choice deciding to stand up for sexual freedom, equality, and positivity. Creepy messages don’t help. But my nudes are out there. My face is out there. There’s no turning back.
I still love it (most of the time)
Before you start thinking I’m super frustrated with sex blogging or that I hate my life, let me assure you that’s not the case. I love sex blogging–it’s changed my life. Sex blogging has helped me get over body shame and sex negtivity, and I know it’s helped others too. Sex toys keep me happy, healthy, and sane. I still get excited every time something new comes in the mail. I have epic masturbation sessions and mind blowing orgasms. I love writing and photography, and this is my niche.
And the fact that it’s not socially acceptable or easy makes it that much more important to me. If everyone already had a positive outlook towards sex and knew all about sex toys, I might consider doing something else with my life. But sexual pleasure and body positivity are so important and undervalued, and I want to change that.
But I also wanted to be honest with you. And myself. I admit that sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m allowed to masturbate with only the toys I actually want to use. That my sex drive isn’t always through the roof. That sometimes all I want to do is use my Hitachi over my gym shorts. That I don’t have to try to be a sex goddess, I can just be me. That I can write about things besides sex. That Jake and I have to work at our relationship just like any couple. That sometimes, hell often… I’m afraid of trying new things. Of pushing past my comfort zone. Of failing. And sometimes I just don’t feel sexy, or sexual.
And that’s ok.