“I conquered something tonight. I conquered a sheltered childhood, telling me my body should be a sheltered secret. I conquered an adolescence telling me there was a specific time & place I should have identified my sexuality. There are no rules, there are no specifications, there is just the body & how it feels, what it wants and when it wants it. I have conquered the shyness and embraced the body pride.”
The other day I went and did a naked bike shoot with the awesome folks who started BikeRackTO! (I’d Tap That did an interview with them which you can read here) and yes, it was a tid bit nipply out, but so much fun! Get in touch with them through their twitter to get involved with this incredible project!
Bike Disclaimer: Had gone to visit the guys who run this awesome project just to say ‘hi’. We got to talking about how I loved biking but due to the recent move back to the T-Dot hadn’t yet had a chance to get a bike amongst all other things to get. The Bike folks had an old spare in the back they let me use after I ensured them that even though I didn’t currently have access to a bike, I frequently walked everywhere.
To Be A Slut offers workshops inspired by the work of Betty Dodson and Carlin Ross. Body Pride was developed by Caitlin K. Roberts after watching the documentary footage of Betty Dodson’s Bodysex Workshops. Workshops are clothing-free and held in Caitlin’s apartment at Yonge & College. To register for events, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Body Pride (co-ed)
$50, 4 hrs (7-11pm)
Workshop includes food, wine, 3 hour group discussion on the body and sexuality, 1 hour ‘body pride’ photo shoot (individual and group shots).
Toronto: Friday, June 20th, 7-11pm
Some awesome folks over at MTV are in their second season of ‘Losing It’ , providing the public with variations of virginity loss. After hearing how badly the sex-ed system failed so many of us, they decided to do a ‘Sex Ed Special’ and guess who’s in it! You can watch it here: Losing It Sex Ed Special!
What a fantastically awesome project to begin constructing a new social narrative in regards to how we talk about and approach sex. Losing It allows you to see just how differently each of us experience sex and sexuality. Big shout out to you guys over at MTV for kicking ass!
Oh! And thanks for letting me fulfill my dream of dancing about naked on TV! (With a super babely naked partner-in-crime to boot!)
I have a curious relationship with makeup.
I was looking in the mirror just now when I had a very factual realization that I have not ever had before (and bear with me, because this might sound weird coming from the chick who has naked workshops about embracing ones body as it is): I like the way I look without makeup.
Anyhow. The point here is that I was born with genetically sparse eyebrows, and no where in the vast space that is the media did I see someone who was rocking sparse eyebrows. Apart from this one point of focus, I also realized I had bags under my eyes, red skin blemishes, short eyelashes, eyes that were too close together, and a lack of cheekbone definition… Seriously… This is what went through my mind when I was 14. For some stupid, stupid reason, the day and age we are growing up in is tampering with our brains to get us to be as self-critical as possible as young as possible.
If someone had told me at 14 that one day I would eventually alter my appearance enough to resemble all those blonde, seductive movie stars I cut out of magazines, I would’ve thought they were cray-cray. Regardless, it is my particular belief that we are all beautiful despite and with our altered appearances. At this point in my life, when I dye or cut my hair, change my wardrobe or apply heavy makeup – it is because I am intrinsically enjoying the variations of self that I can have. At 14, I wanted to do it because I thought my natural self wasn’t good-looking enough.
I think this is partially why I started running the Body Pride workshops. Because while Jessica Simpson is very beautiful, she is just one specimen of the human race. It’s an infuriating process to start to deconstruct the social constructs that have been building up in our minds since we gained access to magazines, the internet, TV and books. It is also a very slow process because they tend to only come one at a time.
For about 8 years I could not leave the house unless I had my eyebrows on. Which is a very silly thing to think, especially because no one but myself made this rule up. In tangent with this eyebrow rule, there existed a large period of time that I wore a considerable amount of heavy of makeup: primer, concealor, cover-up, bronzer, blush, eyeliner, eyeshadow, highlighter eyeshadow, eyebrow dust, mascara. You name it. Except lipstick. Lipstick and I never became friends.
Not only was this expensive and time-consuming, but also annoying. In my head, I had to apply all of this gunk to my face before going anywhere or allowing anyone to see me. And I mean anyone – my own family went months without seeing my natural face. It got to a point where, upon sleeping at a partners house, I left the bed in the morning to go apply all of this makeup again, fearful they would turn to stone if they saw me without my eyebrows on, god forbid.
It didn’t help that my first boyfriend had told one of our mutual friends that I looked like a bulldog. And we met at camp where makeup didn’t exist. That was nice to hear at 16.
I owe huge thanks to one partner who finally just told me to “Relax a little”. I took a few deep breathes, thought about it, and started to believe that not caring what you looked like when you woke up in the morning, was by far sexier than darting to the bathroom to apply a thick layer of foundation.
So, my life lessons thus far go along the lines of ‘if you are experiencing it, someone else definitely is’. Which is why I have made a post about this. For something that should not be a big deal, it has taken me years, a lot of confirmation (from a husband who seems to have a PhD in flattery), a lot of self-validation (confirming that people don’t actually cover their eyes and hiss when they see me bare-faced) and a puppy (you don’t have a chance to put yo’ eyebrows on when the pup has gots ta pee) in order for me to happily say, I like the way I look without makeup.
And while I do enjoy the wonders that makeup brings (can’t lie about the fun), there is this giant weight that has been lifting by removing this strange goopy rule that I had inflicted so early on myself… So, once again, baring it all, gooplessy yours.
Hello internet babes, this is a guest post by Rachel Bellamy. Rachel is a freelance writer who covers a variety of topics on relationships, self discovery, and personal empowerment.
Every year, you settle a little more into yourself. You begin to accept just the way you are and care less about what people think. It’s just one of the amazing things about getting older. But with this acceptance also comes a deeper knowledge of yourself, inside and out.
Sure, at this point you understand how you’re going to react when stimulus X happens, you know what you’ll say if stimulus Y happens. These things are engrained in you, but do you know how your body will react to yourself when you take the mental component away?
You can learn the most about yourself when you quit thinking and just truly dive into yourself–sexually that is. Getting to know yourself sexually is one of the most empowering things you can do, so if you haven’t been kicking it with yourself, it’s time. Here’s why:
Exploring yourself sexually can make you more confident. It’s true. It’s like having a little secret that no one else knows about. You learn what you like, how you react to it and what to do to really push you over the edge. That in and of itself is empowering. You’ll feel strengthened in your sexual power and feel great about yourself.
Sexual exploration can also help you have better sexual relationships. Knowing what you like and how to express yourself sexually is attractive. Your partner can’t just guess as to what you like and you’ll have no idea how to tell them if you haven’t taken the time to do it yourself. And just like the above, the confidence you get from knowing yourself will parlay itself into the bedroom and you’ll approach sex far more confidently. Both you and your partner will reap the benefits.
You’ll also be able to keep your health in check. You don’t really know what’s going on down there when you avoid spending time in your nether regions. Frequenting every part of your body allows you to keep tabs on spots, moles or new lumps that may have formed.
Self-exploration can also keep you sexually satisfied without having to reach out to someone else to do that job, which can be nice when you’re not in a relationship. There’s no reason to lean upon someone else to get the job down when you have all the right tools to do it yourself. Want a little assistance? No shame in that. Head to your nearest sex store like adameve.com and see what excites you.
In addition to the above, regular masturbation can actually help you sleep better, make you chemically happier, lower your blood pressure and even help you deal with pain. So the next time you have a headache, skip the aspirin and jump in bed instead.
Now that you know, it’s never too late to start. You don’t have to be 18 to really explore yourself sexually. In fact, it’s great and empowering at any age, so don’t waste another day!