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And so it begins…

Welcome to my blog: WhatTheSlut?

I’m a mid-thirties kinky, slutty, feminist trying to make sense of female-identifying and femme sexuality in the world of patriarchy, religious fundamentalism, and conservative society.

My intention for this blog is to explore concepts of sexuality and the female-identifying and femme body in public spaces. I fully support consensual sex work as work (ie. strippers, cam girls, porn stars, full service sex workers, Dommes, sugar babies) and regularly hang out at strip clubs, burlesque shows, and share personal explicit kinky content with a few trustworthy folks on the inter-web. I believe that in reclaiming spaces for women to express their sexuality, this in turn gives agency to those involved and allows for empowerment through subversive sexual acts.

Whereas I respect and honour the experiences of LGBTQ2SIA+, QTPOC, BIPOC, non-binary, genderqueer, pansexual, and label-free folks, I speak from my own experiential learnings as a sexually fluid, mixed heritage, cis-woman.

I hope to publish content that aims to normalize the female-identifying and femme sexual experience in public as legitimate and powerful. In the meantime, I’ll just rant about it on here, unabashedly.

You can also follow me on Instagram and listen to my brand-spanking (yes, please!) new podcast on Spotify or Soundcloud.

Thanks for reading. Stay slutty, friends.

B.

Wet for Her Review: Tomboi Harness Briefs & Fusion Dildo Strap-On

As y’all know, supporting female owned and operated businesses — and ones that are inclusive and representative of LGBTQ2SIA+ — is my jam. So, when I discovered Wet for Her — a WLW sex toy company out of California — I was all in. Part of their ethos is encouraging others to develop a healthy sexuality both individually and within a partnership, and finding sexual harmony within that journey whether it be with or without toys. Any company that takes part in assisting others to reclaim and own their sexuality is one that I hold in highest regard, and why I am so supportive of these queer babes. (Ok, can you tell I’m smitten? Now back to the review!)

Being the Femme Daddy that I am, I was super pumped to try the Tomboi Harness Briefs and Fusion Dildo. Unlike other harnesses which typically strap on to the body like a belt (hence the term “strap-on”), the Tomboi is a brief-style harness with a built-in O-ring for your dildo. The briefs also come in a wide range of sizes to fit all bodies and are true to size. My partner and I both appreciated the versatility of the Tomboi, which comes in both bikini-cut and boxer-brief style. This works very well for us as a hard femme and a soft tomboy couple.

First things first, the aesthetic of this strap-on is hot as fuck. My partner got all googly-eyed when she saw me in it, which then made me extra excited, as the one thing that turns me on most is seeing my partner get all hot and bothered. As my partner and I are both comfortable with being switches in bed, she was more than happy to oblige strapping me as well. And what Daddy wants, Daddy gets, amirite?

We found that the briefs felt really nice and snug against the body — which is ideal for a harness, considering you and your partner are going to be doing a lot of, shall we say, “maneuvering.” The Fusion dildo slipped into the O-ring easily, and for the most part didn’t move around during penetration.

The dildo itself is amazingly soft and silky to the touch, made of 100% medical-grade, body-safe silicone — which provided a really nice, smooth slide. We decided to go with the small Fusion, which is akin to two fingers in width and just over 5 inches (perfect for beginners and those who find they are a bit “tighter”). Wet for Her also has a very thorough and helpful size guide on their website to assist you with choosing the best option for your ultimate play-sure (ayooo!!).

It’s important to note when giving and receiving to make sure you always have plenty of lube on hand to make the experience pleasurable for everyone involved! As with any silicone toy, water-based lubricant is safest to use, as oil and silicone lubes can break down the material of the dildo over time.

A fun feature of the Fusion dildo is that the base is molded with a raised groove to fit nicely in between your labia and provide clitoral stimulation while strapping your partner. The one thing that we both noticed when strapping — and literally the only downside to the product as whole — is that the base of the dildo didn’t fit onto either of our vulvas very comfortably. While I understand the intention behind this concept, the execution of it could be more mindful of the unique shapes, sizes, and sensitivities of each individual, rather than a “one size fits all” design.

Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience of strapping one another, exploring all the different positions, and just having a gay ol’ time playing.

I am absolutely wet for Wet for Her and would highly recommend trying the Tomboi Harness Brief and Fusion Dildo for yourself and your partner. Find these and more on their website at www.wetforher.com and on IG @wetforher!

***Enter to win the Wet for Her Giveaway on my IG page!***

Stay slutty, friends!

B.

Sacred Sexuality: How the Spiritual and Sexual are Connected.

Some of you who know me more intimately also know that I am certified as a yoga instructor and holistic health practitioner specializing in both physiological and energetic modalities. For some time, I have been exploring what it means to connect the sexual and spiritual bodies through the practice of kundalini, which is mindful and sensual movement, usually through ecstatic dance or asana (yogic postures), that is said to merge the ethereal body with the physical one on its path to ascension/enlightenment. This energetic flow occurs within the spine, and like a snake, spirals its way up through the chakras, or energy points, within the auric field (energy surrounding the body).

Our spirituality is intrinsically linked to our sexuality. This interconnection is vital to healthy energetic flow throughout the body and in moving and releasing any blockages that have occurred due to emotional, environmental, etheric, and physiological responses of the body to what it may be exposed to over time. These blockages, if left unresolved or stagnant, can lead to dis-ease in the body and manifest as autoimmune conditions, illness, or other ailments. Inga Muscio, author of CUNT (and my personal bible) explains the concept of moving this energy by way of climax:

I was sitting at the beach, thinking and watching the waves. The revelation assailed me quite suddenly, as revelations are wont to do: each wave is an orgasm. Sometimes they’re big. Sometimes they’re small. Sometimes they tear faces of cliff from the earth’s surface. If the ocean did not have waves, it would be a big, salty lake. A lake is a still pool of water. Personally, I don’t venture into water that doesn’t move. Bored, malevolent monsters live in bodies of water that do not move. When women function like the ocean, we live happy, healthy lives. Holding on to stuff that does not serve us in our present situation creates actual, physical blockages within our bodies. Bored, malevolent monsters. Which, on the individual level, manifest in bitterness, stifled creativity, sexual perversion, and unwillingness to trust, love, and/or touch. Collectively — when an entire society is sexually repressed — phenomena such as war, rape, racism, greed, and wholesale shitty behavior are considered acceptable.

In other words, have more orgasms. Moving this stagnant energy can be found within the act of sexual pleasure and release. Whether it’s through self or partnered play, there exists a euphoric and spiritually enlightening response to engaging in acts purely done out of sexual gratification. Whether they be dainty ones, explosive ones, everything in between, with or without a partner, and with or without toys or assistance — get funky with your sexy self.

But the key to an epic release is to not focus on the actual orgasm. Too often, we’re concerned with reaching climax, that the lead up and process of getting there, is lost. What if we were to just pay attention to what feels good, drinking in the ecstasy of the moment, allowing ourselves to become encompassed with the waves of pleasure and surrendering to the tides? In this sense, we begin to embody the art of tantra, which is a sensual practice that recycles orgasmic energies throughout the body to create a pleasure-filled full body experience wherein complete release is not the goal. Think of “edging” or when you’re so close to cumming but keep that feeling just before you explode. Now imagine riding that again and again for hours upon hours…I tell ya. It’s a beautiful thing.

So when we begin to work through these sexual energies, allowing them to move freely throughout the body, there no longer exists a “pent-up” or frustrated feeling that can have the potential of affecting our health. Rather, we are flowing with this energy, creating space for things like creativity, motivation, drive, zest for life, joy, happiness, and bliss.

Some great resources for starting your sexual and spiritual journey are:

“Viva La Vagina” sexuality courses and crystal wands by Courtney Davistheempoweredwoman.ca

Sex and sexuality courses by Beducatedbeducated.com

With love,

B.

Your Pleasure Is Your Responsibility.

When was the last time you came? Like, really hard? And with a partner, at that?

What may sound like a simple answer to some, has many searching deep within themselves to remember a time that their partner was able to get them off in the most explosive of ways. Sadly enough, this lack of partnered-play satisfaction happens to many female-identifying folks the world over.

We’ve all been witness to the seemingly common “faking it” trope that has been a long-held theme in pop culture (think Sally’s quintessential table-slapping, sliding down the chair, hair flipping diner orgasm in When Harry Met Sally, which garners the notable “I’ll have what she’s having” response). The point of that whole scene is to make the case that an orgasm can be faked in order to satisfy the person you’re sleeping with.

But where is the logic in misleading someone else? Especially someone you’ve allowed to revel in the glory that is your pussy. How does this help you or your partner to deny yourself the ACTUAL pleasure of getting off? You end up looking a fool for being dishonest, and your partner is left in the dark thinking they’re banking in on those O’s time and again. Let’s be real — you’re too afraid to admit that you are refusing to take your pleasure into your own hands. And thus, you don’t find your pleasure worth it.

Well, you can just STOP. Stop it right now. Your pleasure is your birthright. OWN IT.

It is YOUR responsibility to attain that pleasure — not anyone’s else’s. You can cry me all the fucking rivers you want about your partner not being able to “find it” or the sex being less than desirable. But, when it all cums down to it — and I do mean CUM — it is you, my slutty friend, that needs to be accountable for what, how, with whom, and when you get off. Your partner is not a mind reader. Nor is it up to them alone to try to find what sends you off. You are the one that needs to direct your partner on the path to blissful release. Being able to vocalize your wants, needs, and desires is an extremely important part of embodying your sexual power, and in having a satisfying sex life with yourself and, thus, with others. This is the definition of sexual agency. It is you that holds the key.

So, how do we hone that power? Getting in touch with yourself. And I mean really getting to know yourself. Discover your pleasure spots, erogenous zones, what gets you going and flying high. Give yourself some lovin’, girl! Once you are able to determine where and how you like to be touched, you can then share your findings with your partner. And trust me, any person that wants to learn you and takes the time to truly know your inner (and outer) workings is one worth keeping around. The rest can literally fuck off.

With that, explore away. Go deep. Go hard. Get nasty. The more you know how to make yourself see God, the better equipped you will be to offer your partners the same insight. They deserve at least that knowing. And you deserve ALL the pleasure.

Cum one, cum all.

B.

Fuck You, Pay Me: Sex Work is Damn, Hard Work & Nothing to Joke About.

As an activist and ally of sex workers for nearly a decade, my purpose for this piece is to facilitate a discussion in the larger community on what it means to be a sex worker.

With the events surrounding COVID-19, I have started to see a trend online wherein young women are expressing their desires to turn to camming as a means to make money during the quarantine period. While some of these sentiments are intended to be playful, I have witnessed others taking it quite literally and establishing OnlyFans sites to pay for and view their sexualized content.

Several folks online have pushed back on such individuals, stating that sex work is hard work and nothing that should be taken lightly. Not to mention that almost every sex worker I know has now moved their services online, as if this weren’t the worst possible time for the industry to be saturated with bored millennials who are hoping to make some extra cash. The sex worker community is one that is being impacted greatly, with folks who are desperately trying to make ends meet during a worldwide health crisis that impedes their ability to meet safely with new clients, all the while coupled with major economic uncertainty.

I’m certainly not criticizing those who want to take it upon themselves to feel good or commodify their sexuality for business, or pleasure, or whatever reason you are doing it for. What I don’t respect is when you are doing it, not out of necessity, but at the expense of those that work their asses off on the daily. And, honey, sex work is not easy money.

This then begs question; what, in fact, entails sex work?

I posed this very question online to the CUMmunity and turned up quite a varied response from sex workers and those in the sex industry. I received messages from those that work in strip clubs, brothels, as well as online and street-based, and folks that work both. Some believe that sex work is limited to transactional sexual acts performed between a worker and a client. Others believe that this can also include online sexual acts such as camming and pornography, and consider performance-based sexuality such as stripping and burlesque to be a form of sex work as well.

Every person that answered this survey question currently works or has worked in the sex industry in some form or another. And to say that one person is more valid than the other does not seem like a very productive way of approaching the subject. What I do think is important to consider in what you believe may or may not constitute sex work, is to look at whether or not these acts are done in exchange for money from a willing client.

Perhaps some sex workers prefer to work exclusively online due to privacy concerns, disability, or health and safety risks — does this make them any less a sex worker than someone that chooses to meet with a client in person? And perhaps there are sex workers that get naked on stage and have money thrown at them rather than choosing to offer physical touch or exchange sexual services. Does this make them any less a sex worker?

Sexuality, sexual acts, and how we choose to partake, or even define sex is so different for everyone. There is not one set way to do it. Humans have found a plethora of creative and unique ways to pleasure one another, and it will only continue to expand. I say we celebrate the sexual liberation of others rather than force it into a hierarchy or presume that your methods are more, or less, legitimate.

The most important takeaway, is that there are those who are far more marginalized and at risk for sex-based violence — including BIPOC and QTPOC street and brothel sex workers — and this is something that definitely needs to be at the forefront of the conversation.

Some food for thought.

With love,

B.

Image by: Clayton Cubitt (IG: @claytoncubitt)

Guest Post: Polyamorous While Asian on “Solo Polyamory”

A scene that wraps up the first half of the movie Gone With the Wind has stuck itself like gum under the desk of my mind for years. Scarlett O’Hara returns to her home, Tara, only to find it pillaged and barren. At rock bottom, she trudges along the field and finds a single carrot in the ground, which she lunges for wildly and desperately begins eating. She gets up, the music crescendos, and with fierce indignation, she cries: “As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again.”

First of all, fuck the romanticization of plantations and the slavery era south. That being said, there is something about just that single line that comes up for me again and again.

At 18 years old, a man hit on me at a Barnes and Noble. He was 14 years my senior and would become my first boyfriend in a toxic relationship that lasted 5 years. 

A meaty memoir could be filled regarding the details of that relationship, but it would be a waste of space here. Rather, I’d like to focus on the one good thing that came out of that dumpster fire: being introduced to ethical non-monogamy. 

As a child of divorce raised by a working single mother, I became disillusioned with conventional romance at a young age. My parents’ relationship had ended poorly and my mother would eventually go through a new boyfriend every year or two. Those almost always ended poorly, as well. (She did eventually get re-married, though, and they are still together and seem fairly happy with one another.)

Sometime during my adolescence, whenever I encountered a love triangle on TV, a conundrum would brew in my mind: if both partners are seemingly good for him/her, why don’t they come up with some sort of arrangement to share? Surely, there’s some way they can all be happy together? Two great partners are better than one, right? (These days, I call it the “porque no los dos” solution.) I never extroverted these thoughts to anyone. What insight could my fellow teen peers give me? Or the purely monogamous adults in my life? Would I even be capable of presenting my case clearly or would it come out as idiotic babble? I’d likely only be met with shame and judgment and perhaps exclusion anyway. It felt best to shelve those musings in the back of my mind. 

A few months into my freshman year of college, the Barnes and Noble man recommended I read the book Sex At Dawn. I would later find out it was because he was already dating a woman at the time – also my age and in another state – and wanted to rope me into his own freshly embarked non-monogamy journey. If only present day Michelle could have given freshman Michelle a primer on spotting red flags. 

Despite these tricky maneuverings, when I dove into the book, wave after wave of relief and revelation washed over me. My adolescent ponderings were retrieved from the shelves and dusted off, given new life. All my misgivings about monogamy that had been restlessly kicking about in my mind for years finally clicked into a framework that made sense. Non-monogamy in humans has existed for thousands of years. It really is possible to rectify those love triangles. This flung a door open to a world of possibilities I couldn’t even fully imagine yet. I felt seen. 

However, while newly validated and excited to explore this foreign territory, I was certainly naive and bit off much more than I could chew in my first relationship with this 32 year old. Lessons were learned the hard way, lines carved through my head and heart with the trowel of emotional trauma. 

In those five years, I lived with him, was codependent with him, and allowed him to make me think I was less capable and worth less than I actually was. 

That was two years ago, approaching three. 

Today, I find pieces of myself still much the same yet overall undeniably different. With my ex, I thought I had to resign to a hierarchical relationship with a primary who was emotionally stunted – and who turned out to ultimately not be fit for polyamory. (Surprise, surprise – he wanted to shamelessly flirt and sleep around without consequence but became more difficult and hostile when I started dating successfully about two years in. I’d later learn this is quite common.)

I am solo polyamorous. Definitions vary depending on who you ask, but to me it fundamentally means the following: I choose not to live with any partners or pool major financial resources; and my boundaries around my independence are a top personal priority. In addition, I work to actively practice relationship anarchy, which involves throwing away the relationship escalator, dismantling traditional societal rules around relating, and treating each dynamic as unique – one size does not fit all. 

This is not to say that I’m against entering into and developing deep, committed relationships. On the contrary, I live this way precisely because I love said relationships and I believe shedding the contrived morals behind love/friendship/what-have-you is the way to achieve this. Being a solo polyam relationship anarchist allows me the freedom to experience all sorts of people. And I create my own expectations and set my own boundaries with these people I choose to relate with. Long term relationships aren’t necessarily more valid than one night stands. They’re just different, apples and oranges. All my relationships are equally valid and none of them have to pass some milestone or check off a specific set of criteria to be meaningful. No one person has to be perfect. I can admire and cherish each individual for what they bring to the table without trying to play relationship bookkeeper, tallying ways they would be inadequate as “the one.” Nor do I have to worry about being “the one.” We are what we are. We are enough.

And the most important lesson I’ve learned regarding relationships these past eight years: I never have to settle. 

I deserve to be heard, to be seen, to be experienced authentically and without fear. I no longer have the time nor the energy to trifle with people who underestimate my worth. Suffering fools gladly is so last season – and never should have been a trend. These are my hard limits. Recognizing and harnessing the power of my autonomy is a continual process and I can never go back to accepting less. I already lived through that; it’s too unbearable. I was introduced to non-monogamy under less than ideal terms, starved of healthy boundaries, love, and communication. As each year passes, it becomes more and more clear to me that polyamory is and forever will be a core given as part of my being. It’s part of how I’ll thrive, how I provide for myself a movable feast. For as god is my witness, I will never be hungry again.

You can find Michelle (Polyamorous While Asian) on IG: @polyamorouswhileasian

Image via: DIPSEA (IG: @dipseastories)

Yes, A Stripper: Dispatches from the Pole — Make It Rain.

This piece is part of a larger series involving the many sides and perspectives of strippers from the voices of the dancers themselves.

Jamie Saint is one of several “Strippreneurs” that have made a business out of their hustle. From her start stripping in Queens to making it rain on the regular in NYC, the self-proclaimed Financially Literate Stripper Hoe is showing the incredibly diverse and creative side of sex work.

Her successful stripper clothing line JUICE (IG: @wegotjthatuice) provides high quality stripper wear at an affordable price. She has also made a career as an artist, articulating animal skeletons into fine art – which you can find here.

I got the chance to correspond with Jamie to discuss her journey of stripping and the very important role that sex work has played in her life.

What prompted you to get into sex work? What do you enjoy most about it?

Money, and money. I have actually never met another sex worker whose main motivation for entering the industry wasn’t money. We may say it all different ways, like “Oh I had to take care of my kid,” which means money. “I had to put myself through school,” which means money. Or, as the only girl born into the 1% I ever met in the sex industry told me, “I have to make back the $30k I spent in Prague before my dad finds out.” So, yeah, money. 

That is what I like best. The money. Not because I like to have a bunch of it and throw it in the air (that is fun though) but because it has given me a freedom and peace of mind I once never knew existed. My son does not know what that lack, that harrowing feeling, the pit in your stomach, feels like. Money did that for me. 

I also enjoy the confidence I’ve gained from it. Stripping means that there are tons of men who adore me so much that they’re willing to pay me a lot of money to prove it – this has made it easy for me to hold high standards for the men in my life. 

What has been your biggest takeaway/lesson from working in the adult entertainment industry? 

It is difficult to choose one… sex work has been a huge part of my life. 

The most inspirational lesson has been that I have complete power of myself and my life. I’ve seen myself, in this industry, destroy and rebuild my entire life up over and over again. Over time, I’ve worked on healing and learned to do less destroying and more building. Stripping has been the foundation I built a beautiful life on. Seeing myself make something out of nothing has made me feel very powerful, and know that there is nothing I cannot overcome or do. 

Another one that is a little tougher to swallow is that all you really have, at the end of the day, is yourself. Yes you may have friends, family, community, and that is wonderful and we all deserve those. But you go to sleep and wake up with yourself. The most important things you’ll ever do occur within your own self. As an adult, you are the only one who will always have your own back, be willing to carry your own load. I’ve felt this way since I was a child, but being a sex worker made it abundantly clear. 

How do you think sex work contributes to the reclamation of female sexuality in public spaces?

I don’t think sex work itself does this, but sex workers being public and forming communities among ourselves does. Most sex work is women sex workers performing for and profiting off of the male gaze. Because of how stigmatized sex and particularly sex WORK are in America, this creates a really weird space for us – on one hand, in private, men pine for us, pay us, compliment us, do so much for us, beg us for more. But most of those same men would never publicly date a sex worker, or if they did, want us to quit or pretend to be… anything but a whore. 

So the adoration happens mostly in secret, in VIP rooms and fancy restaurants in a town they’re on business on but do not live in. That shame, that knowledge that you’re a secret, can be very draining. 

But now! We hoe bitches have the internet, and are finding one another. This is really so comforting, so important. So many of us don’t have friends in real life who can relate to our experiences and the support from an online community can mean the world. 

But anyway – the formation of these communities is a reclamation of female sexuality in public because this is us banded together and being like, lol! We are hoes and we are fantastic and we do not care if you love us, because we love each other. 

So to get to play out that part of yourself – the sex worker – with your sisters, for ONCE not for the male gaze – is a huge act of rebellion. Now, instead of always having to be this smoldering hot, always horny, siren seductress – we can admit that yes we are sex workers and we are also people. We feel tired and annoyed and anxious. We feel bloated and have insecurities. We are artists, mothers, daughters, investors, healers. We are healing. It is very nice. 

What motivated you to begin JUICE? 

I found that I was always having a hard time finding simple outfits that weren’t $50. I feel like particularly with strippers, there’s this idea that we are swimming in cash, so people charge us more for shit just because they know we are strippers. I’d go to the exotic boutiques near me and end up paying $70-100 for one full outfit and like, a “fancy” three strapped bottom. 

Also, I noticed that there is no real centralized place where you can go, as a stripper, and buy everything you need – at prices that don’t include the stripper gouge. So, my best friend and I (we started JUICE together in 2019, she is currently focusing on her professional career so I am running it at this time) started looking into suppliers and decided to create the company we saw a need for. 

I am super excited to expand our inventory in 2020 to include way more styles, seamstresses, and accessories. 

How can someone be a good ally to sex workers?

Pay us if asking for our advice or services, recognize that our work is just that – work, don’t ask us to pretend to not be a sex worker when meeting people (unless of course we ourselves choose to keep this private which should totally be respected), normalize dating us, and realize that being a sex worker is our job, and for many of us a large part of our identity – but it’s not ALL that we are. 

If you have a friend who is an accountant, you respect all the other parts of their lives as well. Their hobbies, their goals, their relationships. You don’t allow the fact that they’re an accountant to trap them in a box they can’t escape from. Do the same for us. 🙂 

Anything else you’d like to share?

Everyday, try to do one thing that the person you dream of becoming would do. Anything, it can be so small – putting your dishes away, brushing your teeth before bed. It can also be big! One thing at a time. One day you will look up and realize you are the person you dreamed of. Congratulations, you did it. 🙂

You can find Jamie on IG: @strippervenom.

With love,

B.

Image by: Simona Royal (IG: @simonaroyal)

What The Actual Slut?

Yes, I am a self-confessed heaux. A slut, if you will. And I’m proud of it.

My views on sex and sexuality are, to put it mildly, at odds with mainstream society’s repressed structures, oppressive systems, conservative morality, and religious views.

But the above still find ways to push me back down and tell me that my body and, more pertinently — my pussy — is forbidden from entering the public sphere, and therefore must be shamed, restricted, and policed through means such as laws (ie. FOSTA-SESTA), attitudes (ie. double standards for male sexuality and sluttiness), and, of course, censorship (ie. Instagram’s long list of “community guidelines”).

This speaks to the blatantly obvious fear of a sexual woman. In other words — whorephobia. Yes, my friends, it’s a real thing. And it unfortunately affects a number of cishet men (and women) the world over. Remember that episode of Sex and the City where Trey was refusing to see Charlotte as a sexual being following marriage? It touches upon the centuries-old Madonna-Whore dichotomy, wherein a woman can only be one of the two. She can either be a slutty heaux, or a chaste prude — there can be no in between.

Of course, there are many reasons why some folks may find it difficult to accept a sexual woman. Part of a repressive upbringing, oppressive systems and structures, conservative societal and religious views, can all contribute to this. Not to mention perpetuating the notion that if a woman so chooses to celebrate her sexuality and sexual prowess, she must then be cast aside as a social deviant.

This sounds eerily familiar, does it not? Hint: witch hunts of yore. There is a reason “witch” and “slut” tend to be used synonymously in describing a sexual woman. This is terribly problematic.

It’s time to check your fucking privilege. Be aware of how your attitudes towards women can adversely impact the way she is allowed to show up. How does your view of her and your perspectives impact her environment? What kind of space do you create in your presence? Is is safe? Or is it threatening?

Ask yourself these questions before coming to the conclusion that a sexual woman is asking for it, or putting herself in dangerous situations, or being the perpetrator and instigator because of how she speaks, what she wears, or how she holds herself. Ask yourself why it is even a problem at all that a woman express herself freely in the body she owns, and the power she projects.

I’m not saying that everyone will be capable of reaching this level of respect and understanding towards women and their sexuality. Violence towards sex workers is a glaringly obvious indicator that society has a very long ways to go when it comes to accepting a woman’s birthright — her pleasure.

Although we are well on our way, no woman will be sexually free until every one of us is liberated from fear of persecution, rape, aggression, violence, exploitation, abuse, and any act which strips a woman of her power.

I commend the fierce, slaying goddesses that make it rain with that good good on the daily. Holding you in highest regard.

B.

Image via: Raquel Rottmann (IG: @corazonconleche)

SEXclusive! Interview with pleasure activist & sexual empowerment guide Dion DeRossi.

Dion De Rossi photographed by Natalia Portnoy

Dion De Rossi is a sexual empowerment guide, pleasure enthusiast, and sex witch whose work as a queer and feminist pornographer has been featured in several film festivals around the world. Dion’s journey into sex work led them to creating their own sexological bodywork offerings to folks seeking to enhance their pleasure by connecting with their bodies and celebrating their sexuality.

They are active in the queer and trans community, as well as a mental health advocate, welcoming individuals from all backgrounds to work with them. With over seven years working in the adult industry, Dion has a deep understanding of how exploring sexuality can liberate us from shame and guilt to uncover our truest erotic desires and sexual freedom.

I had the honour of interviewing Dion to discuss their experiences as a sex worker, the insight this work has provided them, and how guiding others on their sexual journey has impacted their own life.

When did your journey as a sex worker begin, and what prompted you to start?

I started in sex work as a brothel worker almost ten years ago. In Australia sex work is either legalized or decriminalized so it’s a lot safer to enter the industry and I really benefited from starting my career in a parlour so I could get instant access to a supportive community of other workers.

I had always been interested in sex work – when I was a kid I saw street based sex workers and thought they were princesses. But the real push was leaving a bad relationship and not having enough money to pay rent or put gas in my car. I was studying social work and part of getting your qualification is you do an unpaid student placement which is 9-5 full time for six months. There was no way I could make the money to survive working in a call centre and I lived right near a brothel so the financial incentive was really the push to enter the industry.

My first weekend I made enough money to pay for a bon and months rent on my own place, buy groceries and have money left over to save. Of course this isn’t the experience for all or even most workers, I will always be grateful to the safety and security the work gave me when I needed it most.

What has been your biggest takeaway/lesson from working in the adult film industry?

First off, ask yourself why you want to work in the adult film industry and what you think you will gain from the work. Unlike other forms of sex work – porn involved showing your face engaging in explicit sex acts for money and once the footage is out on the internet it’s out forever. Really ask yourself if you’re comfortable with people knowing about your involvement in the industry and what the fall out will be for your personal and professional life if the films are found by your friends, family or employers.

Do your research. I’ve worked for some really great companies that treat the models like professionals and the scene is clearly negotiated and works at your own pace. But I’ve also been to some pretty terrible shoots with boundary pushing and predatory directors, especially ones where the male talent is also the director.

The best way to stay safe is to research companies you like the look of and reach out to other models on social media to ask them about their own experiences. It’s also important to have a clear idea of what you are and are not comfortable doing on camera and decide what you are prepared to do before arriving on set as some directors can pressure you to perform acts you don’t want to do in order to make the scene ‘more interesting’ or marketable – it’s not ethical, but it does happen and you have the right to refuse anything you don’t feel comfortable with.

A reputable company will also be happy to meet you before committing to any shoots and answer any questions you have. Some important questions to ask are:

Where will this film be shown online?

What sex acts would I be required to do and do I get to decide what I will and won’t do in the scene?

Will my co-performer be required to undertake a recent full STI/HIV test and show me the results before work?

Can I use safe sex supplies such as gloves, condoms, etc.

How much will I be paid for the scene and how many hours will I be on set?

Who will I be performing with?

What happens if someone behaves inappropriately towards me or if I need to stop or take a break on set?

Will my co-performer and I have a chance to meet and discuss boundaries before the shoot?

How do you think sex work contributes to the reclamation of sexuality in public spaces?

As a sex worker I think it’s important that we shift the dialogue away from the debate around empowerment and the impact on consumers and refocus on the labor rights of the workers. When we get too focused on how sex work ties in to sexual expression and how it makes the viewer/consumer feel we imply that the rights of the worker come secondary to that of the consumer which reinforces a neoliberalist view of the industry. Until we have full decriminalization of our work, access to support services, and the ability to work safely and in the open I don’t think it’s beneficial to talk about the impact our work has on the sexual freedoms of the general consumer.

What motivated you to begin counselling others in their sexual journey?

I’ve always been interested in sex and sexuality and after working in sex work for so long I was wanting to take on a new career challenge that utilized my skills as a sex worker that still allowed me to work for myself and focus on sexuality.

Through doing full service sex work I realised just how little most people actually knew about their own bodies, sexual health, consent and desire and how often sex workers are asked to educate and inform people about these topics as part of their job. When I learnt about sexual empowerment coaching and sexological bodywork it seemed like a natural fit.

I’m passionate about taking my knowledge and skills and applying them to help others develop a greater awareness of their sexuality and become their most embodied self. Through coaching and bodywork I can sit with people from all different backgrounds and help them realise their goals and intentions for their sexual awareness which is honestly one of the most rewarding aspects of my job.

What is something you have learned from your clients that you have incorporated in your own sexual journey?

I’ve met so many people I would never have met if it weren’t for sex work – my clients come from all ages, races, genders and backgrounds, each with their own desires, boundaries and beliefs.

Developing personal connections with my clients – no matter how brief – has taught me to always be openminded, and approach each individual with curiosity and kindness. I’ve learnt that you can never know what people are going through, what their insecurities are and how they feel about their sexuality. It’s definitely made me less judgmental.

I’ve also learnt a lot about so many different kinks and fetishes. My attitude has always been to try everything and use the work to find out what I like and what I’m comfortable with. There are so many things I would never have tried if it weren’t for sex work – for example water sports, pet play, roleplay, pegging, etc. Some things I haven’t enjoyed but a lot of acts I’ve gone on to enjoy in my personal life.

I’ve learnt how to negotiate consent, how to assert my boundaries and become a self taught expert on sexual health. I’ve learnt how to discuss STI status, how to ask for what I want and how to create a safe environment for me and my lovers to discuss what we want.

What brings you the most joy in your work?

Being my own boss, having the flexibility to work anywhere in the world and having spare time to invest in my personal life. I also love that my job is centered around pleasure – especially working as a sexual empowerment guide and bodyworker. I love being able to schedule my work around my personal life – it’s a huge privilege very few people have. I also love being a part of the sex worker community – sex workers are some of my absolute favourite people in the world and it brings me so much joy to be a part of this group of smart, resilient and inspiring humans.

Anything else you’d like to share?

If you’re interested in becoming a sex worker ally, inform yourself about the issues facing our community such as stigma, criminalization, SESTA/FOSTA and access to essential services.

This video by Juno Mac about the difference between legalization, criminalization and decriminalization of sex work is a great space to start
https://www.ted.com/talks/juno_mac_the_laws_that_sex_workers_really_want?language=en

I also recommend books like “Revolting Prostitutes” by Juno Mac and Molly Easo Smith, “Coming Out Like a Porn Star” by Jiz Lee and “Playing the Whore” by Melissa Gira Grant to get informed.

Dion De Rossi

You can find Dion on Instagram @dion.derossi and through their website https://www.sexualempowermentberlin.com/

With love,

B.

Image by: Natalia Portnoy (IG: @nataliaportnoy)

Fuck You, Pay Me: The Impacts of FOSTA-SESTA on Sex Workers’ Rights — Perspective of a FSSW/SB.

This piece will be part of a larger series that explores the impacts of the FOSTA-SESTA legislation on various sex workers.

I recommend that you read my previous piece on FOSTA-SESTA according to a Pro Domme, before reading the following interview.

If you’ve been reading this series, you will know that this particular legislation has greatly affected sex workers’ rights in the US, however, it has now started to bleed into Canada as well. Being that I live in Canada, I have seen most of these effects online as many in the industry use American-owned social media and online platforms to market their services.

I corresponded with a FSSW/SB (Full Service Sex Worker/Sugar Baby) about their experiences online and in the industry. At the request of the individual, they will remain anonymous.

How were you first introduced to sugaring, and what made you decide to start sex work?

As weird as it sounds – Instagram! I had always been interested in sex work but never knew how to get into it. It seemed so elusive and I didn’t know anyone who could help me. I followed a few sex workers on Instagram who offered advice and it got me on the right track. My very first meet and greet with a sugar daddy was meeting for quick drinks to see if we vibed. I wasn’t expecting any payment for that but he handed me $400 without me even asking or bringing up money. It felt like electricity through my body. After that I was hooked.

What challenges, if any, have you noticed in the way clients can access your services, especially with the emergence of increased censorship online (ie. Instagram) and the SESTA/FOSTA legislation? What are your views on the legislation in general and decriminalization versus legalization?

Because I am Canadian I have been affected less than my fellow sex workers in the US. We did lose a lot of our online advertising platforms (backpage, Craigslist, etc) but I started sex work after FOSTA/SESTA so I never felt the full impact. I can see how it can make it harder to find clients or screen them safely.

When it comes down to legalization vs. decriminalizing sex work, decriminalizing is much more appealing because there are no legal rules around what is ok. If it’s legalized the government can say “but only under these (sure to be oppressive) conditions.” If it is decriminalized people can have sex with money involved and it’s no one else’s business.

What is the favourite part of your job?

I love the confidence that sex work has given me. I carry myself differently and men notice. Even when I’m not dressed to the nines in a full face I can see the way men are lured to my energy and that is incredibly empowering. It has also taught me a lot about my own personal boundaries. I know exactly what I want and it’s easy to walk away from anything less than that. I’ve learned if one man won’t give me what I want another one will, and that principle now applies to all areas of my life.

How do you think your work contributes to the reclamation of female sexuality in public spaces?

We constantly hear that women are objectified — that is put on us. The truth is that we live in a culture of men who are raised to be objectifiers; it is their attitude, not ours, that makes us out to be objects. Sex work takes that power back. As a sex worker I can say, hey, you want to objectify me? Not for free! I now have turned the table.

Anything else you’d like folks to know about your work as a SWer?

Sex work is not all glamour and it’s not easy. It’s not only about having sex either. Most of my time as a sex worker is spent marketing, making content, learning business skills, and sorting through hundreds of potential dates to maybe only find a dozen. Not all sex workers have the same privileges either. As a white sex worker I have it very easy compared to BIPOC or transgender sex workers who face oppression on many, many levels. Sex work is much more dangerous for them and they have a much harder time getting help when they need it.

Anonymous FSSW/SB

With love,

B.

Image via: AURORE (@readaurore)

Erotica Series: There’s Something About (Virgin) Mary by Breanna Meow.

This piece was originally published in print by MATH Magazine, Issue Eight (Faith Issue).

The following is an account of one of Mary’s closest girlfriends, “Susan,” whose identity has been changed at her request.

Yeah, I mean, everyone knew Mary was a slut. It’s not something she hid. Back in Nazareth, we used to call her not-so-virgin Mary ’cause she was always runnin’ around telling everyone she was pure so that the guys would want that virginal pussy, ya know?

But the kicker is, she never did P-in-V. She sure as hell did everything else. One time, she came back to class late with this wide-eyed grin like something was stuck up her ass or whatever. Truth is, there was. Pulled me to the pee bush later that afternoon and showed me. Troy from the next village over whittled this wooden horse and thought it’d be hot to shove it up her butt. She fuckin’ loved it. But that’s not the point. I had to oil her ass and my hand down to get that fucker out. 

So, she meets this guy Joseph. Somethin’ is different about him, she says. He’s way older and has this kinda father-figure thing about him. I think the girl has issues. But, not my business. 

They start meeting up once a week at first, then almost every second night. She’s sneakin’ out of her parents’ hut and rollin’ around the hay in the barn out back. One night, she lets him slip it in, “just the tip,” he says and “don’t worry, ’cause I’ll pull out in time.” Month later, she’s cryin’ on my lap, she’s preggers. Her parents can’t know she’s done it. I’m like, “well they’re gonna know now.” 

She comes up with this plan, like an angel came to her in the night and says she’ll, like, bear a son who will be king or some shit. She had an imagination, that one. I kinda laughed and went along; the story’s not gonna fly anyways. 

Tells her parents the next day and they fuckin’ buy it! I can’t believe it. I’m just sittin’ here like someone’s gonna catch on, but Joseph is sayin’ the same shit, an angel came to him too and says he’s supposed to “look after” her. Ha! They knew what they was doin’ the whole time. 

Kinda lost touch with her after that. Last I hear, they’re callin’ her Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus or whatever – and she’s goin’ along with it! I tried reaching out, but she’s caught up with all the hoopla of bein’ a celebrity or whatever. Can’t say I blame her. She always wanted to live in the city. See the world and shit.

B.

Image via: Psychedelic Art Collective (IG: @psychedelic.paint)