Friday, March 26, 2010

Life with a Promise

I am in the middle of a confronting and empowering weekend at a Landmark Education course entitled Power & Contribution. If you've ever taken it, you know what I'm up against - life with a Promise for the World.

Let me explain...

A Promise for the World (per Landmark Education, highly paraphrased by moi) is something worth living my life in the pursuit of fulfilling... something that lights me up, that is worth taking action toward in the face of disagreement or lack of results, and that I've likely been committed to for much of my life.

In my case,
my promise is that by 2016 all people are free to choose and free to live the style of intimate relationship that inspires them. I look back to when I was 33 and discovered BDSM... for the first time, I felt that I made sense to myself, I fit, and I was not broken. My next thought was, "Why didn't anyone tell me about this?!" And I've been moved to get the word out ever since. However, I can look at the underlying themes in music whose lyrics moved me in college, high school, middle school, and still see a commitment to full sexual self-expression. It truly has been there all along.

"Wow," you say, "that sound great. Now, how are you gonna do that?!"

No joke! That's where I've been grappling for the last two months, and the key is this - I don't have to do it alone. Amazing people are already out there doing great work in the area of my promise - Reid Mihalko, Megan Andelloux, Sarah Sloane, Midori, Barbara Carrellas, Anita Wagner, Baba Dez Nichols, Charles Muir and SO many more. (Who do YOU know who's up to something in this area?)

"Well," the demon in my head might say, "if they're out there doing it, why do we need you?"

"No kidding," I've thought. And this is why I've spent the last two months in a funk. Here's another key point -
my promise is not Me. I, M. Makael Newby, the identity, the ego, is terrified to contact the aforementioned people, thinking that *I* have nothing of value to offer. But my PROMISE is not afraid to contact them and offer itself up, saying, "Here's what I'm up to, and where do you see yourself in this?" As soon as I take my own, little, personal identity out of the picture, detach emotionally for a particular desired result, and dwell in what's available for the World... well, there's a space to take action, eh?

I've already started creating a team of committed individuals to fulfill on my Promise. I see the need to write Mission and Vision statements next. And I need a few people willing to be a part of that conversation whose livelihoods are NOT connected to the realm of sexuality in any way - impartial partners, if you will. If you or anyone you know is inspired by what would be possible in a world where all people are free to choose and free to live the style of intimate relationship that inspires them, I invite you/them to contact me. I'd love to discuss what that could look like.
(I'd also benefit from conversations with people who may NOT want that to happen.)

My next blog will fess up to where I, until last week, had sold out on being free to live what inspires me, unwilling to even desire beyond the reasonable.
Yep, I'm gonna dish the dirt on myself. Stay tuned!

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Porn - A Referral Blog

I was once asked to write a blog about pornography. To date, I've yet to find a way to address it, but it has been on my mind.

Accordingly, I'll refer you to Desmond Ravenstone's blog: Ravenstone's Reflections. His recent blog about porn is informative, well written and insightful, and I think you may enjoy it.

I'll keep working on my own thoughts and questions about porn and will post them for your consideration soon enough. In the meantime - enjoy.

M. Makael Newby, 2010 -

Friday, March 19, 2010

I'm Right There With You

There she is. Professional, well-spoken, published, seemingly full of vigor and commitment. If only I had her bravery or courage...

Don't be so sure.

In this world of 'looking good' and 'having it all together,' how often do we see someone's external presentation and automatically conclude that it represents their actual life? The next time you envy another, think again. I'm here to tell you that we're all in it together.

I've been having a crisis of faith. The results I'm seeing in my life are not consistent with what I truly believed I was creating, and my nasty internal voice - the one for which I can never be enough - has been very loud and particularly undermining of late. I say faith - It says wishful thinking. I say actions consistent with my beliefs - It says foolishness and irresponsibility. It's my demon, it says too much, and I have been listening to it.

My fiancé wishes that I realized how awesome and amazing I am. Crystal agrees - she sings my praises in ways that make me blush. Niq assures me that I'm not alone in all of this. Betsy called me to get together, and I still haven't called her back. Numerous long-distance friends have told me how inspiring I am - but I just don't see it that way. It says 'if they only knew...' etc.

It's always more inspiring to see myself through other people's eyes, and what I'm starting to realize is that I can't trust a single thought that I have about myself. There's a saying, "Your opinion of me is none of my business," and in my case, it's MY opinion that needs tossing aside.

So what's to be done about this?! First and foremost - get out of my head and get into a conversation with other people.

The demon, of course, thinks that's a huge imposition and that I should keep my mess to myself - which means that I should KEEP it. The false belief is that it's catching - like a virus that my friends and confidantes will come down with if I share it with them... the I'm-not-enough Blues. The truth, as you know if you've ever been there for someone who couldn't see their own greatness, is that allowing another to lift you up also lifts them in the process. Asking for help can be a gift to those you ask.

Secondly, inquire into the activities that shut the demon up. In my case, it's when I'm designing a poster in Photoshop, a presentation in PowerPoint or Keynote, or writing the treatment for my new screenplay, even when playing with my dog. During these activities, the voice disappears! What's the common thread? Partnership and creating tangible products. How interesting...

Thirdly, develop the mental muscle to intervene when I notice the demon speaking. It lies to me anyway, right? It's time to start noticing the blather, and replacing it with something else - perhaps thoughts of what's beautiful in my world (like my dog). No disempowering yack yack shall be tolerated!

You have compassion for me? That's great. Now have compassion for yourself. That is often the harder part. And remember - no matter the externals, we're all in this together.

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ultimate Fellatio Tip #6 - Teeth

Teeth, yes, teeth.

We've already covered biting in the post about being rough, but there are additional ways to use teeth that can enhance your BJ experience. As mentioned before, opinions and preferences vary... some men like it gentle, and others rough, so ask first and watch the response you receive.

Besides biting, there is of course nipping and scraping - varying levels of intensity and pressure using the edges of your teeth. Additionally, you can rub the head of his penis between your cheek and the outer surface of your teeth, the ones that show when you smile. It feels weird, but a man taught me to do that, so...

And as long as we're talking about teeth, we can mention cheeks. Taking a dick down your throat is great, but you can also direct it into your cheek. Think about it - nice soft, stretchy flesh - no wonder it has a certain appeal. You can also press the head of his dick into your cheek and then slap your own face lightly. Kinky? Strange? Perhaps. But again, it was a man who taught me to do that. My job is merely to pass along the information.

(And I love my job!)

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Friday, March 12, 2010

Dark Odyssey: Winter Fire'10 Personal Review Part 3

And so finally we arrive at the final part of my DO:WF review series, the personal part. The part where I share my freak-out of Sunday afternoon and the unanticipated and surprising solution. It had been building for a while, and Sunday morning kicked it into high gear.

I have thought to write a workbook to help people inquire into, and navigate entry into, the styles of intimate relationship that truly resonate with them. When I learned of the workbook that Barbara Carrellas is writing, my inner demon, the nasty little voice, said, "See, she's already doing it, and she's doing it better than you could. Nobody needs you. You're don't have anything to offer that can't be found through someone else who's doing it better..." and yack, yack, yack. I sold some more books, but not nearly as many as I'd hoped, and it said, "What did you think you were doing? You're never going to sell enough copies to recoup the costs of making it. It's just one more example of one of your big ideas that fail..." and blah, blah, blah.

Intellectually, I know that all of this is not true. I do have a particular style that speaks to a group of people, I do have something unique to offer, and I have faith that people who read my book will start talking about my book, which will encourage others to buy it, and so on, and so on exponentially. But when standing at the base of a very big hill, it's hard to imagine the view from the top, and by the late afternoon, I was starting to feel the impact of listening to that snarky little voice. I threw myself onto the bed, sharing my concerns with Q, and the more I spoke them, the more they grew, and the more scared I got, culminating in a hysterical fit of sobbing. To make it even worse, I'll add one more concern to the pile: Money. Okay, now do you get the state I was in?

I understand the new-thought belief that our words create our experience of the world, our reality if you will, and that we should therefore only speak our best hopes and desires. At the same time, what we resist persists, eh? I have found that I often resist what I don't share - I need to acknowledge my fear and concerns to get them out of my head, if only to hear that they are usually based in the past or the future, or both, and create something that inspires me to keep going in the present.

But this time was different. I'd been spending the weekend looking for what I need, and networking, selling books, sharing my vision, videotaping, and Being someone who intends to be a world leader. I was EXHAUSTED! And out of that exhaustion I saw what I needed - Zero Responsibility. I put a lot of pressure on myself every day, and knowing this makes no difference. I needed a chance to stop being responsible, and, in fact, to have no responsibilities whatsoever for a period of time. I longed for the days before "work," before homework even, when everything was play, and everyone was new, and the world was mostly fun and expression.

And so, as Q suggested, I'd be seven. Seven years old doesn't care about work, or being perfect, or whether she's making the difference she feels called to make in the world. Seven doesn't care about her libido, how to navigate polyamory, or how she's going to pay for her wedding. Seven doesn't care about innaccurate property tax assessments, destructive tenants, or book sales. Seven just wants to have fun and be loved.

So I donned a black skirt, a cap-sleeved, Asian floral print blouse that has black straps clipped to any number of small D-rings (so you could yank me back if I started running away), threw my hair into pig-tails, and added my tennies with my favorite "Life is Good" socks. It was a look, to be sure. And then I took on the character - high-energy, a bit clumsy, physically loose (in the way that young children throw their bodies around), enthusiastic and demonstrative - et voila... Missy.

We headed off to the restaurant, encountering my friend Paul at the bank of elevators, so I raced up to him, stuck my leg into the air awkwardly, pointed at my ankle and said, "My socks have dogs catching frisbees! See?" It was a hit, and became my introductory line through most of the evening.

It was a challenge at the restaurant, balancing being seven with respecting the other diners and the wait staff. I couldn't let myself be fully seven or I might have made a scene, and I am big about consent. The other patrons had not agreed to be a part of our little scene, so I kept Missy under control, content to slouch and sigh and glance around distractedly, to hum while I chewed and smacked my food a little, and to make faces at the mushrooms on my plate - yuck! I think our server had caught on by the end of the meal, as her approach to me altered from Adult:Adult to Adult:Child. It was very cool to experience. (Note: this was in the hotel restaurant, so they'd been serving a whole crew of leather-clad, cross-dressing, corset-wearing perverts all weekend.)

Then we went on to the Dungeon, where "Daddy" had a play date with a masochist. It took a while to find a space and get ready, and I got to be bored (which I NEVER am in real life), and play with a piece of rabbit fur, that I'd tucked in a small handbag I could swing around, and a stuffed alligator codpiece. They chased each other, the rabbit got eaten, then scolded the alligator... it was awesome. Eventually, I tired of playing and ran over to greet the people I knew who entered the room. Stormy finally took me under her wing, thank goodness, as "Missy" really had no interest in watching "Daddy" spank the other lady, and we watched some really pretty suspension rope bondage take place.

When "Daddy" was finally done, we snuggled on one of the sofas for several minutes, punctuated by visits with Ryan and Sean, who yanked me around by my straps while I giggled madly, and Paul, who gave me a piggyback ride up and down the corridor, again to a chorus of giggles. I climbed back into Daddy's lap, and soon after declared myself done. I'd had enough, and I was done! There was a pole to dance on! And the Sex-O-Rama to go play in! And then Ryan agreed to teach Q about using pressure points for sadistic control, using me as the demo-bottom, of course. (A double dose of Ouch!)

Reflecting on the experience, it was exactly what I needed, and something I may need monthly if I keep pushing myself at this pace. I could notice what Makael was thinking/feeling about being in public, or about Q playing with someone else, without allowing myself to engage in further examination of it. I didn't have to look good, or be strong, or capable, or a good listener, or sexy or graceful, or to figure it all out, I could just be Missy. I could be silly, sloppy, floppy, snuggly, awkward, carefree and needy with no explanation or justification. For Q it was a particular challenge, because he had no previous experience with being The Adult who's responsible for a young child, and he too wants to do it again. It gave him control, which is something he definitely wants, in a way that I could give it without my Strong and Capable being threatened.

I am totally certain and clear that my new opening from the weekend was a direct result of 1) approaching the entire event from a space of curiosity, and intentionally seeking my needs, 2) Julian Wolf's Role Playing class, 3) Barbara Carrellas' class on identifying our values & needs. The conversations we had, things we heard and saw, and other classes we took also played their role in creating a safe space for exploration, for which I again thank Karrie and Greg, Tristan & Colten, the organizers, for bringing this into being and continuing to provide such opportunities for our communities.

Until next year!

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Monday, March 8, 2010

Dark Odyssey: Winter Fire'10 Personal Review Part 2

One of the biggest challenges in attending Dark Odyssey: Winter Fire is deciding which workshops to attend! Each time slot includes roughly six choices that may encompass BDSM philosophy, dynamic or technique, sexuality and identification, tantra and energy play, relationship style/choice, sexual or physical skill, and much more. Choosing between two workshops that both seem important to you is a common experience. Our very thinky Saturday began with Sarah Sloane's Polyamory Boot Camp.

Q and I have come to realize that we've got to open our relationship to poly on at least one level. He is a sadist, I am NOT a masochist, and there are needs of his that I am neither able nor willing to fulfill. I tried, it had a detrimental impact on our sex life, and we've both come to the decision that it's best to find other partners with whom he meets those needs. So we've been thinking a lot - how do we do that? Enter our choice of Sarah's class.

While we were pleased that nothing in Sarah's class took us entirely by surprise, she made some very good points about flexibility, negotiation, and self-care. Her comments about communication and responsibility reinforced the way in which we've been handling this time of occasional upset and inquiry. She also raised the issue of needing to treat each partner as an individual, in that what works for one emotionally may not work for the other, and that one must remember to Be with each partner as individual relationships instead of one part of an ego-centric whole. I'd never considered that - thank you, Sarah.

As Q proceeded to The Fine Art of Dirty Talk with
Amy Jo Goddard (a mind-opening and language-expanding class that I'd taken last year with this fabulous presenter), I succumbed to the late Friday night and forewent the Fine Art of Prostate Massage and Locks of Lust (a class on hair-bondage) to take a much-needed nap, after which I felt MUCH better. (I couldn't decide between them anyway!) Lunch became a social networking opportunity with Anita Wagner, a well-known polyamory educator, which was followed by Plays Well with Others, a workshop by Lqqkout for those new to the scene and/or partnerless on how to approach and meet others, and negotiate for the scenes you'd like to experience.

We then attended
Julian Wolf's Role Playing workshop, which opened my mind in entirely unanticipated ways. Beside the fact that role playing is an excellent way to increase the level of experimentation and excitement in a relationship without necessarily adding additional implements, toys, pain, or partners, and is thus a fabulous gateway into the realm of the alternative from the mundane, it's something in which I have little experience. Little being next to No, as in I've done it just once. Julian's class broadened my perspective on the world that is role play, and the ways in which it can be of value. I've already spoken with her about incorporating her "mundane" version of the class in future ventures. My mental gears were turning...

Saturday evening, after my hotel-room book signing for
My Erotic Adventure, we ended up dining at the hotel with a number of local and traveled peeps including Michael Rios of the Network for a New Culture. While he and I talked activism and the current state of public opinion on alternative forms of relationship and sexuality, Q chatted up a local masochist and scheduled a tentative play date for the following evening. (Hooray and whew!) Eventually we dressed in our kinky slinky finest and again toured the dungeon and surrounding play spaces to see what and who there was to see.

Q is relatively new to the scene, and thus for him it was a near overwhelming visual and aural feast of sights and sounds, the smacking, thumping, cries and moans, laughter and music reverberating through the main dungeon. On the other hand, I've been around for seven years, and for me it has become a largely social opportunity to visit with friends and share affection. As mentioned, I'm not a masochist, nor am I a bottom... I've finally identified that, unlike many players in the BDSM scene, I do not get the endorphin-release that results from intense pain and may create an altered state-of-consciousness referred to as dropping, flying, or sub-space. I just get pain, so I walked the dungeon looking newly for non-pain-based experiences that I might enjoy experiencing.

The first I found was fire play - the practice of using cotton swabbed wands, alcohol, and yes - Fire - to apply levels of heat to one's skin. It sounds scary, but the alcohol burns off rather quickly when used appropriately, and it looks sexy as hell. Do NOT try this at home without proper education from an expert! I am not responsible for any damage you might cause.

The second was
suspension bondage. Now, I've been bound before - wrists tied together, ankles and knees, forearms laced together behind my back - and the rope itself doesn't necessarily move me. It's the suspension that I want to try. I'm curious about the feeling of being fully supported and held in mid-air. I know the ropes will bite into my flesh with the weight of my body, but what else? I love to spin, I like swings and hammocks, and suspension can be a work of art, believe me. Dammit, I'm curious! I'll be working on setting that up now that I'm back in Portland. And Q likes working with rope, so if I enjoy suspension, that's something we can do together in time.

Saturday was another late night, and Q decided to sleep in for the morning class while I hustled off to
Barbara Carrellas' Tell Me What You Want. I'd attended Barbara's Erotic Breathwork class before, so I knew that she was a quality presenter, and I was particularly interested in what she had to share about identifying and sharing one's needs. I'd been feeling that I wasn't getting something I needed, and remained unable to identify what that was, so this was a very personal investment of time.

God bless her, she's working on a workbook to help people through this process, and we were one of her "lab groups." Hooray! What I discovered through her process of drilling down from important life elements to core values is that Peace is one of my values. Not one, but several of the important elements in my life reduce down to Peace. What a valuable place to look in the midst of an upset... are my core values being denied? I have not yet finished the process she outlined, but it's on my to-do list.

Q joined me for lunch with married friends that I'd met at DO five years before, after which he hit the dungeon to observe a medical stapling scene that put my wussy nerves on edge while I attended the Cock Sucking and Deep Throating workshop by
Danielle dv8. The most important thing I learned is that the DO crowd are not the people for whom I need to present my workshops. These people already know that they're interested in advanced and alternative activities. I need to work with the new, curious and inquiring.

Secondly, I learned about the differences between giving head to a bio-penis vs. a silicone one. In truth, this is the only workshop I attended in which I was disappointed. Although Danielle has a very rowdy and engaging style, it was not well laid out for the main crowd to effectively see the techniques demonstrated, and there was no sense of flow. Although I learned some valuable facts, I felt that there was much more that could have been covered. Of the 90 minutes allowed, this workshop took between 45-60 while all other lasted the full time limit. Oh well.

Our final class of the day was
Whittney Matlock's Male Member, a review of techniques from the Body Electric school in bio-male genital massage. I dare say that Q enjoyed this workshop. :)

This completes my review of the DO:WF workshops, as they ended on Sunday afternoon. My next and final DO:WF blog will share my personal breakdown and breakthrough of that Sunday evening and the way in which the WF workshops made it possible.

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Dark Odyssey: Winter Fire'10 Personal Review Part 1

Dark Odyssey: WinterFire... What a pansexual adventure! It has become my kinky family reunion - the one time each year that I am surrounded by my favorite alternatively bent friends and loved ones. Additionally, each year I meet new favorites, and so my family grows! More people to appreciate, admire and love - a gift indeed. Philip, Sean, Shervon, Vicki, Kai, Theo, Stormy, Beth, Don, Paul, et al, I love ya.

This year was unique in that my fiance, Q, attended as "my assistant." He keeps me on track on a daily basis, returns me to sanity when my internal dialogue gets loud and nasty, as it is wont to do, and grounds me in ways I've yet been unable to ground myself. I am blessed to be his partner.

Now, when I say "my assistant," I do so with the greatest humor. He is a dominant sadist, and certainly not "in service" to me in any formal way. (Much of my attention was spent trying to find him a masochist with whom to play, but more about that later.) I say "my assistant" in that he is absolutely committed to my success and willing to support me in almost any way possible. I would have been at a loss without him - let me explain...

The first big undertaking of the weekend was actually not a part of DO. I filmed my Non-Monogamy for the Novice and Ultimate Fellatio workshops for the
Kink Academy. Quoting from the website, "The Kink Academy provides creative, playful, and varied sexuality instruction for curious adults and consenting (and adventurous) individuals who are looking to take their sexual knowledge further, to explore their own fantasies, and to learn from experts who are passionate about helping you to improve your sex life!" That's Me! And, that's Q - he was the stunt-cock for my Fellatio workshop. It's a tough life, but someone's got to do it, eh?

Well, let me tell you something about filming... it's a lot harder than you think! My inner perfectionist was SCREAMING that I was doing it the wrong way, using the wrong words, and generally screwing it all up, and Q was tasked with 'keeping it up' on-demand and under a time restriction. Thank you again to Adam, Princess Kali's very professional camera man, who managed to encourage me and create a safe space to do things I never thought I'd do on camera. We'll see what he managed to create from my starts and stops soon enough. But hey, it's all a part of my commitment to share the knowledge, and then there was DO itself. Due to the filming, we missed the Friday workshops, but we dressed in our most casual yet sexy best and toured the play-space.

For those who've never attended DO:WF, there is a HUGE dungeon - about two large ballrooms worth - of continual tables,
St. Andrew's crosses, bondage chairs, spanking benches, cages and racks, and scaffolds with winches for every manner of consensual pleasure and abuse one could imagine. Fire play, wax play, bondage and suspension, sensory play and sensory deprivation, pony, kitty or puppy play, needles and medical play, flogging & whipping & beating, oh my! It's all fair game. (Note - all included links are merely examples and may not be accurate to the equipment or activities at DO:WF.)

Of course there are Dungeon Masters in charge of oversight, to make sure that everyone observes the rules and nothing goes wrong, and ample empty space is left around each piece of "furniture" to allow people to pass and watch and talk without encroaching on the implied privacy of the scene. Waterproof barriers (think of larger and thinner puppy training pads), anti-bacterial wipes, hand sanitizer, condoms and lube packets, tissues and napkins, etc. are all provided at tables throughout the space to maintain cleanliness and sanitation.

Across the corridor from the main dungeon are more play spaces with some of the same equipment as well as several
sex swings and a lounge area with a dance pole. Given that it's a portable pole, and I'm neither short nor tiny, I rocked the base significantly the first time I tried it out. I think I'll stick to the full-mount variety in the future!

There is also a lounge area next to the Sex-O-Rama, home of exhibitionism and voyeurism, filled with
Liberator Esse shapes, padded mats and a Zeppelin. The Sex-O-Rama itself (the signature sign has an arrow reading "Fuck Here") has a variety of mesh or gauze enclosed beds and mats, plus some exposed play areas for the truly open attendee.

See things you will - things that entice you, things that repel you, and things that make you go, "Hunh?" But by the end of the weekend, having learned, laughed, and discovered that you are NOT alone and that there is acceptance for whatever your interest may be, you'll be happy you attended and able to see strange sights and think, "Okay, that may not be my thing, but if it works for you..."

And that is why I love Dark Odyssey: Winter Fire. Surrounded by S&Mers, fetishists, polyamorists, swingers, kinksters, voyeurs and exhibitionists, Tantrists, sacred sensualists, gay, straight, gender-queer and more... EVERY variety of kink is embraced. Even if yours is to be completely non-kinky and monogamous. *gasp!*

At Dark Odyssey, even Vanilla is a valid and welcome flavor.

In my next blog I'll review the classes I attended and how they've impacted my life.

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A day to celebrate.

Today is America's Sexuality Day. It is a day to celebrate sex - your sex - however you choose to have it or not. A day for expanding awareness and inquiry into the role of sexuality in our lives, society, relationships, minds and hearts; to note that censorship is very much alive and to have intentional conversations about what sex means to each of us - even with people whose views may differ. A day to acknowledge the complex symbiotic relationship of sex, individuality, culture and our democracy.

Today is the
historic anniversary of the passage of the Comstock Act of 1873: America’s congressionally-authorized package of censorship laws against sexual free speech. Without indulging in a lengthy and detailed history, Anthony Comstock, for whom the act was named, type-cast all erotic material as "a deadly poison, cast into the fountain of moral purity." By the beginning of the twentieth century, he bragged about his career totals in his annual report for the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, which included:
  • arresting 2,385 individuals;
  • destroying 73,608 pounds of books, including a sexually explicit marriage manual for newly married couples who asked for bedroom advice;
  • destroying 877,412 "obscene" pictures;
  • 8,495 negative film reels for making "obscene" photos;
  • 98,563 articles for "immoral" use of rubber;
  • 6,436 "indecent" playing cards;
  • and 8,502 boxes of pills and powders with the purpose of carrying out abortions.
(Thank you to my friend Noah Eaton for sourcing the previous two paragraphs.)

So where do we stand today?
  • In 2007, 0.6% of the population of the US had been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. That's 1,200,000 people in the US alone. (
  • In the seven years between 2001-2008, the US saw an increase in chlamydia cases by 45.6% to 496.35/100K population. (
  • If the marriage and divorce ratios remain the same as they were in 2008, 49% of marriages will divorce. (Centers for Disease Control, 2008)
  • Conservative infidelity statistics estimate that “60 percent of men and 40 percent of women will have an extramarital affair. If even half of the women having affairs (or 20 percent) are married to men not included in the 60 percent having affairs, then at least one partner will have an affair in approximately 80 percent of all marriages.” (
  • An estimated 1.3 million women are victims of physical assault by an intimate partner each year. (NCADV Public Policy Office)
  • One in 6 women and 1 in 33 men have experienced an attempted or completed rape. (NCADV Public Policy Office)
  • There are 16,800 homicides and 2.2 million medically treated injuries due to intimate partner violence annually, which costs $37 billion. (NCADV Public Policy Office)

So much for the fountain of moral purity.

This combination of inherited repression and media-based mixed-messaging is clearly a harmful cocktail.
What can be done?

First, know yourself. Step aside from what society has taught you is acceptable and right, and inquire into what truly inspires you. Read and listen and learn about the many ways available to relate to others. Cliché though it may be, you must know and accept yourself before you can truly know and accept another. What would it mean for society if our children were all raised in an environment of inherent acceptance and self-worth, encouraged to inquire, challenge, and choose?

Secondly, share yourself! While society at large may frown on conversations about sex, the individuals that make up that society are hungry for it. Talk to your friends and family, take a risk, be vulnerable, and create a safe space in which they too can share. It may not be easy - it may not even be pleasant - but there is not a human being alive who is not touched by issues of sexuality in one way or another.

Who would we be as a nation if we were free to be curious about sex, to share our concerns and questions, to give up "looking good" or "looking bad" and simply BE with and support each other in this arena? What if we could simply agree to disagree with those who choose another viewpoint than ours; to create intentional intimate relationships where both partners are empowered and fulfilled? What would that freedom make possible in other areas of our lives? In our communities? Nationally? Globally?

Today is America's Sexuality Day.
It is a day to celebrate sex - your sex - however you choose to have it or not. Today in particular, enjoy your sex, yourselves, your lives and your loves. Speak them freely and loudly, for our words create the world in which we live.

M. Makael Newby, 2010 - All Rights Reserved -