Tag Archives: negotiation

Activity: Eroticizing Verbal Consent

8 Feb

*** EDIT: Check out this similar blog post! Thanks Melissa for the heads up!***

Recently, I lectured at the University of Michigan Sexpertise event about a variety of sexuality related topics, including eroticizing the consent process and making negotiation sexy. Videos of the lectures themselves are soon to come, but in the interim I wanted to share an activity I used at the end of the event to help the group relax into the idea of clearly and explicitly stating sexual desires in a safe, confidential way. Please note this is an adapted version of an activity done at a sexuality training I attended years and years ago, and I am unable to find the original source to credit them. If you know who it is, please let me know!

Background: We’ve all read and heard about the importance of gaining clearly stated verbal consent from partners before sex acts. But how do we do that in a way that doesn’t make our partner feel like we’re role-playing lawyer or doctor? “I would like to remove your pants and preform fellatio,” might interrupt the flow of a sexual exchange by sounding too clinical.

I suggest that dirty talk is an excellent way to go about negotiating consent while simultaneously heightening the erotic experience. “All I can think about is tearing off your pants and sucking your..” well you get the idea.. is asking your partner through stated desires, just like the earlier example, but in a way that’s likely to heat things up instead of cool them down. Dirty talk is an excellent way to state an interest in some sexual activity, and create space for your partner to say “yes, please!” or “mm, maybe not.. but I’d love to ____, what do you think?”

The problem is that dirty talk can feel awkward sometimes! Follow the cut for an activity to help participants loosen up and get comfortable with making sexy suggestions without being too on the spot!

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The conversations you never have: taking a look at monogamous privilege

11 Oct

[[17Oct2011 EDIT: Thank you Bahli for the link! It seems somebody else has created a list of monogamous privileges. Check it out- it’s much more comprehensive than what I cover here and worth a read.]]

Just a quickie today, and I’m hoping for a lot of audience participation (I know y’all are out there reading, I see the stats, come comment!). Tell me the relationship privilege you’ve noticed!

I generally don’t make a big deal about being poly. I slip it into conversation where it’s appropriate, “oh, my sweetie’s girlfriend had a similar experience,” “yes, my sweetie works at xyz university…. yes I know I said he lives overseas, that’s a different sweetie,” and so on and so forth. Often, this immediately halts the conversation as people request clarification.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love educating. It’s one of my passions! But, there are times when I really wish I could just talk about my life, without having to go into a long explanation of how it works… And it’s at those times that I realize that it’s a kind of monogamous privilege, the ability to talk about your life and love without people needing heavy explanation or defense.

So, in the spirit of Peggy McIntosh, I want to start thinking and talking about monogamous privilege. This isn’t meant to be a negative conversation about monogamy, I am totally into the idea of all kinds of relationship structures, as long as they’re what people want to be doing- but I do think it’s important that individuals within a majority population recognize the privilege they have in some circumstances, even if it’s small social details.

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Polyamory: an introduction, kind of

7 Oct

Trying to encapsulate the entire world of non-monogamous relationship options in a single blog post is akin to trying to read all of six parts of Tolstoy’s War and Peace overnight. It’s impossible. For now, I’d like to introduce some terms and concepts that may pop up throughout this blog. This is by no means a comprehensive guidebook, but should give you at least a quick idea of what’s going on when we talk poly! Once more, mileage will vary: you may find different uses of these terms out in the world.

For a more thorough how-to on polyamory, I highly recommend The Ethical Slut by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy. A great online resource for many things poly is Franklin’s Polyamory FAQ.

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