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Something very special is on the horizon…

This afternoon i invested several uninterupted hours catching up and reading, my various and long loved birthing/preggo/parenting blogs, resources and fb groups. It’s something I have been wanting and meaning to do for a few months now. My interest these online spaces had piqued especially of late, as there is some serious and pretty hardcore anti home birth, midwife and doula propaganda out there at the moment. It’s also not a solely led US conjecture anymore. Some of the ‘medically based’ anti home birth stuff is appalling, i was looking at one UK based website run by a female doctor (obgyn if i recall correctly) and the vitriol is just unbelievable. Not even going to dignify the site with a link, it is 100% accusatory, blaming and hyperbolic. How it is ever appropriate to tell a grieving parent, publicly, on the Internet that their daughters death was caused by their choice to home birth and that ‘you killed your child’. I shit you not! I weep for humanity at times, I swear to fucking Babs. And here I thought the whack job Todd Akins and Republican platform were the general spaces (in the Western world, that is) that promoted and led the attack for 3rd party ownership over women’s bodies and fetuses!

This afternoon one particular post on modg blog transfixed me, it sucked me in and completely blew my mind. (linked below) Its a really amazing, honest and in parts, vulnerable post but unashamedly so, regarding her fears and desire for a VBAC with her upcoming 2nd birth. What is incredible about the way modg writes is the way she strips away the bullshit, niceties and mommy-expectations and opens a safe, articulate space and dialogue for others to share in turn. This particular post has 250 comments and 3/4 of which are women recounting and sharing their birth experience/s, most of which are honest and open accounts, with varying levels of detail and information. I read every single comment. There is definitely some pro natural childbirth sentiment but on the whole I found a wealth of anecdotal experiences about so many different facets of pregnancy, childbirth, recovery and boobie milk. I have gained a much greater insight into the seemingly universally and often crippling concept of the ‘perfect birth’. It was also pretty fucking cool to read about loads of ladies eating their placentas or planning to and for the most part without the PPD qualifier. Heaps of open discussion regarding the mental and emotional demands and risks faced too.

In all the time I have spent researching and reading about what it’s like to actually make another person, this particular post and consequent sharing of stories, hopes, regrets, knowledge and future plans in the comments, has by far been the most insightful and meaningful piece of information i have accessed so far. What really struck me the most was the overwhelming support and love and validation. I have some small and still fairly undeveloped ideas about women centric communities and networks for pregnancy, birth and parenting but hadn’t really seen that element come together in an online capacity and certainly not in Australia. It is especially unique to find a space where lots of women were sharing lots of diverse experiences, beliefs and ideas.

Something I have noticed, at length, is that different modes of childbirth values or beliefs splinter away from each other and become islands. I have always been able to see the clear divide between medical and non medical childbirth camps, but the more I read and research, I see a pattern of trauma because the labour and birth don’t fit predefined goals of the chosen birthing values. It’s also really difficult to approach any of this sort of stuff as it is so deeply personal, beliefs and values have been thought about and invested in, post partum there is also often a heady mix of regret, sadness, trauma, disappointment, stress plus a hell of a lot of pressure and expectation from various sources in a women’s life.

What I find continually appalling and just flat out unfair is the vocal, self entitled vitriol aimed at parents and their parenting. In saying that, most of the loaded, judgey, shaming stuff is leveled at women. I also see much of the judgement and righteousness directed at pregnant women and new mums about their choices is coming from other women and mums, which is terrifically sad and so horribly counter productive. Then there’s the natural or home birth experts and of course the cries in the media from the medical experts, whose opinions and advice actually vary wildly depending on where you go, who you see and sadly, how much money you have. On top of that you’re trying to work out what is best with your partner, but both your families are also often going to chip in their 10 cents, sometimes more. Government and society definitely have their legislature in your womb and body autonomy, not to mention if you hold and practice religious beliefs and of course your immediate and wider communities affect and color us as people, parents and families.

New families are grossly under supported and isolated within our communities, especially in non-urban areas, but yet every single area of your life will have something to say (loudly, too) on what you should and shouldn’t do, what is and isn’t ‘best’ and what is flat out right and wrong. No wonder 85% of new mums in Aus experience some form of post natal stress leading through to severe PPD, post traumatic stress disorder and total breakdowns.

I do believe there is a huge amount of new parents and bubbas out there who are massively judged and criticized yet grossly under supported. I too have been just as guilty of this seeming righteous ease we have in society when addressing pregnancy, childbirth and parenting choices.

Not actually that long ago I would spout my crunchy bs about my all natural, home birth, in water with my doula by my side practically from the moment of conception. When realistically that’s only an option I would choose, if it was safe to do so, I have no way of predicting whether I will have a low risk pregnancy that can engender this sort of birth. Also, the more I read the more I think it’s foolish of me to have an anti epidural stance, I’m really just removing one of the tools I may need to access in birthing, despite what I think when I’m pregnant or even actually heading into labour. So many birth experiences cite having an epidural as the difference between getting through a vaginal birth and having to section. Especially with epic long labours and induced births. No, I still don’t really want a c section, if possible I would love to have a vaginal birth, but when it really comes to down to it, no matter how my baby is extracted from my body it will be super-bullshit-amazing-awesome that I gave birth, whatever giving birth ends up meaning for me. I have realized the crux of childbirth, for me, it to get the ginger doom child out of me as safely and best I can. I don’t see a rigid agenda surrounding my birth experience a pathway towards keeping myself calm, in control and empowered to make decisions if I do need to.

Its heartbreaking to me that so many mammas feel robbed of their perfect birth or that they failed as a biological woman and mother. There are layers of guilt, shame and self blame all based around the physical birth not achieving what was wanted or expected. I can in no way, even begin to fathom what this scenario would be like or do not seek to dis value the loss, sadness or trauma that is felt surrounding unwanted medical interventions. It does sadden me that sometimes the pressures we heap onto ourselves to reach these heavily constructed and idealized births only serve to further compound the stress of deviating from what is wanted and planned.

What I am driving at and realize more and more is that those whom are heading into pregnancy and child birth need infinitely more love, support, understanding and active, meaningful, immediate community networks and resources. We most definitely need to find more ways for women to connect, share and bond about their experiences, whatever mode of birth they chose or ended up having. The different camps, ideologies and practices for childbirth need to come together at least enough for information and options to be available to address on a scale, rather than having to basically pick a team and either pretend the other side doesn’t exist or that is so undesirable its not even worth knowing about.

All of this stuff is hard and scary and unpredictable so lets stop making unhelpful and self interested comments and instead provide as much information as we can, offer help and resources, listen wholly to fears and concerns but most importantly we need to open our hearts with as much compassion and understanding as possible. No one really actually knows the answers, that’s precisely why it is so bloody frightening. I hope we can, in future, create environments with the support, information, expertise, connectedness and lots of other mums and dads of all backgrounds engaged and involved in. Then new parents can be empowered to work out exactly what is available to them, organize their network effectively around themselves and to clearly address what birth really means to them.

MODG blog – birthing stories

Sending a bazillion kudos to all the brilliant parentals out there. I have bonkers levels of respect and love for you folk. Big squishy love shaped cuddles. You guys totally fucking rock!!

So, I finally made it to my careers psychologist appointment. Becoming a sexologist is my dream, my passion and ultimately the goal of my life.

A combined social work and psych degree is a big, long and scary thing to approach. By the time I do the year of Sexology on top, at the end of that, it’s like 8 or 9 years of school. I’m not sure if it is the best course of action for me, really need to think further and check in with my friend who is currently working for an organisation as a sex educator.

My head feels so full of stuff right now, it’s a little overwhelming and I’m looking forward to my partner being back home, to talk to this week.

If I can be employed as a sex educator in schools and in the community at large, with a social work degree, I am thinking I will go ahead with that. Once I have my social work degree it would greatly reduce the time of a psych degree and I can pursue that second degree perhaps a little later in life, or possibly part time whilst working as well.

Although a part of me thinks I am reluctant to take on the duel degree because I am scared. I am scared of failing of being too overwhelmed of taking too much on and this whole thing is really full on general.

As I said, lots to think about.

Susannah Breslin creator of the letters project has created a new blog in this series, Letters From Men Who Go To Strip Clubs

Lifted from her blog post on this particular project:

“I like doing The Letters Project for several reasons. Because it’s self-directed. Because it gives me and others a window into a mindset that may not otherwise be revealed. Because I think confessions are a sort of fascinating, dynamic genre. Because with every year that passes for me as a journalist, I believe more and more that the only way someone can understand something is by listening to a cacophony of voices. This is that cacophony.”

I personally find these projects deeply fascinating. I work every day in the ‘confessions’ business, it’s my job to get you tell me things and secret things and personal things. The people I speak to personally also fascinate me. I think a space for anonymous confessions are extremely useful and insightful.

Sadly, as a female my input isn’t required for this project. I entertained the thought of writing a submission and sending it anyways, but I have such little time to write, I think it’s better to invest that energy into making things that will be seen. I think it also would have made me feel like somewhat of a petulant child. Also, the lady in question does clearly state she is only interested in hearing from males.

I respect this lady and the things she does, I think they are important things – so if you are male and have been to a strip club or continue to do so, please consider taking the time to write a submission on your experiences and motivations.

On a slightly related topic, you may also be interested in her self published piece regarding ‘Porn Valley’ and the often strange creatures that inhabit and exhibit in these spaces They Shoot Porn Stars Don’t They

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang has been gracing your screens and pants for 2 years now!!

I celebrated accordingly:

Things seem to be getting much, much better.

Although it has obviously only been a short while since my last post, I feel like a massive weight has been taken off my shoulders.  I’m feeling a hell of a lot more relaxed in sexual encounters.  Sexual situations are arising spontaneously and whilst I still do need to consciously switch off my inner monologue, it is getting easier.  I still don’t feel like I’m aroused in general or masturbating as much as I’d like to be, but I do feel there has been improvement.

I’m not stressing out about it anymore at least.

We’re heading overseas in a few weeks time and I do think travelling together and getting away from our regular life, jobs, house and just everyday stuff is going to do us a world of good as individuals and in turn in our relationship, including the sex we have.  I can’t wait!

I digress.

A few days ago now, a lovely lady whom I work with and reads my blog, approached me about my most recent entry and commended my bravery at writing about such a delicate and deeply personal experience.  It struck me as odd, because I feel as though if I didn’t write about something so pivotal here I’d be a total fraud.  It’s been really difficult to just write up and post, I’ll admit that, but I honestly believe the more people that put their experiences out there – good and bad – the more we learn about each other and in turn, ourselves.

I do feel it is a cop-out to write about all my sexy good times here and then skip over the gritty shitty stuff that happens to me.  I started this space to simply write and to share.  Full stop.  Being selective about what I write about undermines my whole ethos about this space.

It was also immensely helpful to put together my words and thoughts when I felt much calmer and clearer.  At the time I was so upset, confused and just flat out distressed.  Writing about something that has been eating at me for months and the breaking point in that situation has actually been quite healing.

I’m sure this isn’t all going to be over and ‘fixed’ in 1 week or even 10, but I will keep talking about it and trying to understand myself and the way my body and brain work.

Being a relative sexy-blog n00b, I’ve only *just* heard of this list and now I’m slowly, but surely working my way through. I’m so excited to find so many new super sexy spaces to read. It’s going to take a whiles me thinks, but still with so much awesomeness ahead, who can complain?

Hurrah!

Here is the link to the top-100 list over at Between My Sheets: top-100-sex-bloggers-of-2010

You should so totally go check it out 😀

Enjoy.

A little while ago I spent some time in the studio recording some of my sexy tales.

All the stories I write are personal experiences that I’ve documented as best I can, sexual non-fiction if you will.

It was an awesome and surprisingly emotional experience.  Actually vocalising what I write, which are the things I have actually experienced made me really re-live them via my records of my inner monolgue.  The lovely H whom chose which of my stories I was to read, organised my studio time and worked with me to record them. She told me she has been cyber stalking me via my blog and had sincerely hoped I would agree to tell these tales in the studio, as she felt it just wouldn’t be right for anyone else to read them.  Throughout she was so happy with how me and my stories sounded…  She said she always read my posts here and heard my voice telling them inside her head as she read them.

I was really amazed by this.  I guess I never thought my writing would engage someone so much. It’s a good feeling to know this as I so want to be able to articulate my thoughts, feelings, goals, aspirations, rants, fears and especially the experiences I have well.  The good, the bad and the ugly too.  I just want to be honest and truthful in my ongoing sexual journey and translate that as best I can here.

To be asked to share those stories and throw a wider net of those whom I share my experiences with is absolutely fucking rad, without a doubt. To have my writing bought and then be the person whom is recorded, telling my stories as my inner monologue and being able to relive those awesome times in turn is just incredible.

It makes me feel incredibly inspired to keep writing and investing in my own self documentation.

Going to record a litte more stuff in a week and it’s something I am looking forward to greatly.

I should make bumper stickers, hey?  Laf.

Go here for the rest of best alphabet font you’ve ever laid eyes on: http://www.alexmerto.com/#258162/Effing-Typeface

I fucking *love* this blog.  Please go have a read, it’s just phenomenal.  Send them your 25 things, it’s an incredibly freeing experience and one I’d personally recommend.

Posted below is my favourite 25 things, insofar, for the month of February:

1. First off, I’m not confused. I confuse people. I confuse them to no end, and that really grates on some of their nerves. Still doesn’t make me confused.

2. I give different answers to “What’s your orientation?” depending on who’s asking. I tell average laypeople I’m bi, because they probably don’t know what a pansexual is. I tell bigots that I’m gay, because it annoys them more. I tell people who know what “pansexual” means that I’m pansexual.

3. I would say that I find more people attractive than average, but develop crushes on fewer than average.

4. Sadly, a high percentage of these crushes are on people I have less than a 0% chance of ever sleeping with, on account of their being fictional characters and all.

5. Doesn’t stop me from fantasizing, though…

6. I’ve had two relationships, unless you count elementary school pairings. In which case, three.

7. I’ve had people of every major orientation/gender identity mix hit on and/or develop crushes on me. Bi girls, couple straight girls, a couple lesbians… several gay guys, couple bi ones… and even the occasional otherwise straight guy. Great for the ego, I tell you.

8. I find intelligence sexy.

9. I believe that gender is in the brain, sex is between the legs, and that gender overrides sex. I know for a fact that there are many people who disagree with this. These people are welcome to not sleep with me.

10. I dislike giant silicone boobs. They intimidate me. They’re like henchmen… they don’t say anything. They just sit there, ominously. If they had arms, you can bet the mortgage they’d be crossed intimidatingly.

11. On the flip side, naturally giant boobs are fine. The chances of them spontaneously exploding silicone are much lower, and there’s more of a chance that the person attached to them doesn’t otherwise look anorexic.

12. I’ve never had sex with a transperson. I’d like to try, but not in that creepy “The only reason I’m dating you is because you have boobs and a dick” kind of way.

13. Something about social dancing freaks the living Hell out of me. I’ve even devised a system to avoid dancing at parties. (It’s quite simple. You hang onto the same handful of chips for about half an hour, and if people tell you to go dance, you say “Can’t, I’m eating”, waving the chips around for emphasis.)

14. I’m terrible at realizing when people have crushes on me. I mean, just terrible. I just always assume people are being friendly. Took me two weeks to realize my now-boyfriend was, in fact, hitting on me.

15. I would never have the guts to be a stripper. I’d be the world’s most awkward stripper. I imagine I’d end up staring at my feet as I took everything off in a meticulous and orderly fashion, after which I’d gather my clothes and briskly walk offstage. I’d be lucky to make enough money to cover parking.

16. I’m not a huge fan of phone sex. To me, it just sounds like awkward questions about clothing, then some descriptions of masturbation, someone breathing heavily into a phone, and then most likely falling asleep at the other end.

17. Despite reading heavily on the subject (like any other teenager with Google), I’ve only had what would qualify as “oral sex” with two people, one who could really have showered more often, and one whom I’m dating.

18. I’m not in any way turned on by exhibitionism on my part. Maybe if I had a regular (non-trans) body, it’d be different. But not with this body.

19. I could only get into role-playing scenarios during actual bedtime activities. Permanent inequality (ie, a slave/Master relationship, etc.) holds no appeal for me.

20. I think one of the most important things to remember is that there is a huge difference between love and sex. Not that both aren’t nice in their own ways, and hey, if they coincide, awesome. But they’re still separate.

21. I wouldn’t mind trying sex with a woman at some point. It’d be interesting.

22. I often have trouble deciding whether my approach to sex (as a topic) is more “academic” or “hippy.” I often then try to imagine how many other people think this about themselves. I’m guessing a couple thousand, tops.

23. I find the word “coitus” highly unattractive. I mean, way to take a reasonably fun act and give it a moniker best suited to some kind of semi-edible shrimp-based stew. Good job, science.

24. I’m game for a lot of things, but excrement, knife play, gun play, and any type of asphyxiation where there’s a chance something could go horribly awry are all out, as is anything involving animals or people incapable of consent.

25. I find porn videos with scared-looking participants a turnoff. It’s not that I’m against roleplay, au contraire. It’s that scared-looking porn stars just remind me of how many porn stars have been sexually abused, and once you start thinking about that, it pretty much kills it.

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