Author Archives: Condom Monologuer

About Condom Monologuer

Condom Monologuers are anyone willing to share personal testimonies, stories, pros, advice, questions related to safer sex (or lack thereof!). They are anonymous or otherwise contributors at Condom Monologues.

How I Contracted HPV and What I Did About It

This post is written by Tashia Amenerio, founder of the non-profit HPV Awakening.  She writes from her personal experience why she is pushing for HPV be reportable- meaning sexual partners must legally inform each other of their status- and why she urges you to sign the petition to get the FDA to approve HPV testing for men.

(Un)Knowing HPV

Graph from the CDC. Fourteen million will become newly infected with HPV this year. This means that almost every sexually active person in the US will acquire HPV at some point in their lives.

Graph from the CDC. Fourteen million will become newly infected with HPV this year. This means that almost every sexually active person in the US will acquire HPV at some point in their lives.

When diagnosed with HPV, life as you know it is over. You face disturbing contradictions within the medical community . On the one hand, there are those who describe it as “this generation’s AIDS”. On the other side, you are faced with medical “experts” who don’t know their head from a hole in the ground and tell you that HPV is nothing to worry about.

Here is the kicker: Most HPV strands, like most cold or flu strands, really don’t do much of anything but chill out in your body having a viral party of genome development. The issue(s) arise when you get people who are knowingly infecting others with cancer causing strands- a crime of which I’m personally all too well aware. And then you have others who are unknowingly transmitting the STI. A major reason for this is because it is not standard practice to get tested for HPV- and there are no official tests made publicly available for males- despite the fact that HPV is the most prevalent STI in North America right now.

So What Can We Do?

Well, I started a nonprofit HPV Awakening Inc. I lecture all over the Florida and have done a few media interviews. I sit here now writing you about my experiences and I’ve launched a petition that needs 100,000 signatures by May 28th, 2013, so that it can go to the White House to get HPV male testing approved by the FDA. Sign the petition.

I have contacted several local media stations and sites. And I have tried moving my civil court case to a criminal one in order to have the state acknowledge the fact that HPV cancer strands should be taken as serious as AIDS/HIV strands.

The Miami DA has kindly informed me that, well, HPV isn’t mentioned in the Florida statute at all. Thus they can’t help me. This is in spite of the fact that my case is backed with the full support from the local police department that filed my report (Miami Gardens), and they are willing to facilitate the investigative work!

So here is where you the reader come in. What can you do? Well, if you have ever been diagnosed or know someone that has been- I can relate. It sucks and it isn’t easy. And fun (insert EXTREME sarcasm) questions and situations follow diagnosis.

From Why Me? To What I Will Do About It!

In my case, I had been a virgin with no sexual experience prior to my ex, so I didn’t have to go through the questioning phase of Who? But I did have to go through the constant questioning phase of Why? After I received my diagnosis and contacted my ex he kindly informed me that he had known but since it hadn’t directly impacted me he hadn’t cared.

But that wasn’t the only “Why”. The “Why me?” phase kicked in and it kicked in for several of my friends too. Because once you get sick, it isn’t just you. It’s you and those that care about you, or who know you in a caring light- family, acquaintances, associates, co-workers and strangers you disclose to- that are impacted.

I remember one conversation in particular with a friend of mine that went through a bad life phase (attempted suicide and was a bug chaser at one point in time) sitting on the stairs while we shared a smoke (a short lived habit I picked-up during that “Why be and Why bother” phase). He was crying because he couldn’t understand how “Good people like [me], who never do anything risky end up getting sick and people like [him], who have tried every way possible to be ill and die didn’t.” Easy answer: “I don’t know what a ‘good’ person is, but sometimes Shit Just Happens.” It is a matter of what you do with the situation that counts.

I finished the cigarette and realized that some habits aren’t worth starting or maintaining just to stay wallowing in self-pity.

For those of you that are still reading, I say Yay! Thank you in sharing in my past misery. It really does love company.

Please sign the petition to get HPV male testing approved by the FDA. Go to We The People to sign.

Condoms: Can’t live with ’em; Can’t live without ’em

My relationship with condoms is conflicted. I don’t completely trust any condoms. And yet, I have to use them because they are my only option as a heterosexual male. First I’ll explain why I use condoms. The I’ll explain why my dislike for them always lingers: Can’t live with ’em; can’t live without them.

tight ropeI use condoms for three reasons: 1) I don’t want to contract an infection or disease. 2) I don’t want children without being prepared and 3) I do not like how hormonal birth control changes a woman’s body, her emotional and natural cycles. Why I dislike condoms is because, for me, they often don’t feel good and they do not always work.

My reaction the time a condom last broke on me was pretty interesting.

I was using a new condom that my friend suggested we try. It was Kimono Mirco Thin Large. The condom fit a little tight at the base, but drop a bit of lube on and how it feels during sex is great. It was so thin and sensitive, I honestly don’t remember feeling the condom ever breaking.

I remember confiding in my partner the worry that condoms are not always guaranteed to work. Of course, she protested my comment. I don’t blame her. Condoms are the best option and just because there is the chance that they might break is still a stronger safety net than not using anything at all. Coincidentally, that same day we went through this experience.

When we were finished, I pulled out and saw my naked penis pierced through the top of the condom. My initial reaction was, “Oh Shit! The condom broke.”

Shock and worry flashed through me. But I knew everything would be fine because Plan B could be bought over the counter. Honestly, I think my partner was more distraught than I was. However, I didn’t make anything easier because I started to make jokes about how I just told her I didn’t completely trust condoms.

It killed the mood. However, it raised my awareness about how important it is to experiment with different condoms and research different condom sizes and fits. I now know my trust in Kimono condoms has expired. And I have yet to find a condom that fits me perfectly.

Condom breakage is so dangerous. What if I didn’t have money for Plan B (a generic brand costs about $40), or what if I contracted an infection? It’s so frustrating that even when being safe and responsible, there is always a level of risk.

What I’ve learned from this experience is that I should take the time to get to know my partner to the point of feeling comfortable talking about STI history as well as what we do in the event of safe sex malfunction. I really need to do more research on condoms that fit me correctly and don’t cause irritation.

Any suggestions would be most welcomed! So while I continue to struggle with condoms I can’t give up on them. Abstinence is the ultimatum I’m not willing to succumb to.

Monologues are independent stories and the opinions shared are the author’s own.


Can You Just Notice Me Please?

This monologue was submitted anonymously via Tell Your Story page.

He’s in my sixth period study hall, but I don’t really think he knows I exist because he sort of sits on one side of the room while I stare intently at him from the other side... (photo from Max Klingensmith)

He’s in my sixth period study hall, but I don’t really think he knows I exist because he sort of sits on one side of the room while I stare intently at him from the other side… (photo from Max Klingensmith)

S-so do you ever want to…like grab someone very very gently by the shoulders, look deep into their eyes and then shake them semi-violently whilst screaming “LOVE MEEE.”

No? Just me? Right…

So there’s this guy. Kevin. He’s in my sixth period study hall, but I don’t really think he knows I exist cause he sort of sits on one side of the room while I stare intently at him from the other side with what I call my “I’m-secretly-sending-multiple-pictures-of-your-face-to-my-best-friend” cell phone position.

Don’t give me that look, I mean I’m not stalking him. We…acknowledge each other on occasion…

Like the other day he walked by my desk and he was like “Hey,” and I was like “Oh ha hey how’s it going? Is that a new sweater? I don’t I’ve seen it on you before. Green is definitely your color.”

And at that point, he kind of walked away awkwardly, so I either creeped him out or he just didn’t hear me, but to save time I’ll just go with the latter.

I tried my best to not be obvious, really I did! I just wasn’t that good at it… But how obvious does a girl have to be before the stupid guy is like: HEY GUYS. HA I THINK THIS ONE MIGHT LIKE ME.

I mean, I straighten my hair, which is curly and not like curly curly like frizzy curly that takes four score and seven years to straighten.

I even put on make up. Which is a whole argumentative essay presented in MLA format with six paragraphs and a two page works cited all on its own.

I won’t even mention the fake eyelashes…actually I will. Let me enlighten every male specimen in this building. I glued small fibers of hair to my eyelid for this kid. Honestly.

And all I got. Was. “Hey.” So yeah. Hey.

Would violence be an appropriate response?

Monologues are independent stories and the opinions shared are the author’s own.


Limp On Condoms

A one night stand of fun, no-strings-attached sex was exactly what I needed. Undesired, however, was a man who went limp at the sight of condoms.

condom_cmWe quickly hooked up. Hot, passionate kissing that evolved into a scene of heavy lust. Before we gravitated to the bedroom I asked him if he had condoms on him as I was unprepared- guilty as charged. Pleased that he did, we confidently carried on without inhibition.

He was over 40 years old. To me that signaled “experienced”. Plus being an amazing kisser, I was so excited to share me body with him.

He handed me a Lifestyles KYNG. Up pops the first warning sign. I thought to myself, “This guy doesn’t need a large size condom.” He was perfectly average. But this wasn’t the right time to bust his misplaced ego. However, the wrong fit could put us at risk of malfunction, so I planned that if the condom seemed too loose I’d simply ask if he had a different stock of rubbers.

But a greater malfunction occurred.

I peeled open the condom. As I rolled it on him, his shaft instantaneously went soft, softer. Limp. “Urgh, I hate condoms!” He exhaled. “I never had to use them in my last relationship. I’m not use to them.”

Guess this 40 year old wasn’t as experienced as I imagined.

My story isn’t rare. I’ve encountered different versions by my friends and peers that, even in clear non-monogamous scenarios, men will complain that condoms dull sex- as if sex is not worth it if it involves a condom! This puts the other person in an incredibly confusing situation. It’s an act of disrespect for the person’s well-being to complain and try to adverse protective sex.

Speaking from my own experience, I felt it was implied that the problem was that I wanted to use protection. This guy wasn’t just complaining. There was a real physical disdain against the condom. An initial wave of pity ran through me- how embarrassed he must feel for this involuntary action- followed by a flash of insecurity in myself.

Feelings of doubt were brief. Doubts in my own sexual worth and worry that this man is now going to feel we can’t have great sex because I insist on condoms. I consciously had to fight these powerless thoughts and remind myself that condoms to me equal hot, worry free sex. It’s hot because it’s a gesture of taking care of each other and of being socially responsible. Intelligence is sexy.

Besides, a man who doesn’t like condoms and obviously doesn’t know how a condom should fit, is another warning sign that he likely has had unprotected sex before and likely has an STI.

My response: I told him that we can keep trying. And we did, manually. Two condoms later, no improvement in his stamina. So, penetration was out, but that didn’t stop us from enjoying each other in different ways. He was respectful in that way.

Our relationship is left with my offer to help him find the right condom that’s perfect for him. This of course means plenty of trial and exploration ahead. So this may become a tale of a condom hater converted to condom lover. We shall see.

Monologues are independent stories and the opinions shared are the author’s own.


The Birth of Momdoms (includes actual birth)

As a child, did an adult ever “catch” you looking through books of a sexual nature, like human biology texts or porn? Did the adult respond in shock, embarrassment, anger? For the brothers of Momdoms, their mother’s reaction was the spark that set off their company’s mission today. Here’s Wayne Simpkins telling that story:

MomDomGraphic-v2Penis. Vagina. The words that made us all giggle in our childhood years. But for us, it went way beyond that.

Our mom was a nurse who had no problem saying those words more often than your average mom. So often, that we would even have contests to see who could get her to say the word “penis” the most times.

Our mother would openly explain to us what was happening to our bodies as we were growing up, and how, when the time came, “The Talk” about sex was more of a conversation. No biggie.

There are four siblings in our family, three boys and the youngest a girl. Needless to say, we were always getting into things. When we were around the ages of 8-13, we found a box in our garage of our mothers old college nursing books, at that age we immediately honed in on the anatomy books. Our mother came down and “caught us”, we were mortified. Somehow, despite our young ages, despite sex positive parenting, we already knew the feelings of shame around sex.

But in true fashion of our mother she said, “Well don’t just sit there, bring them upstairs so we can look through them. We can talk about any questions you have, just please don’t color in the pictures.”

Our family has always used humor to get through awkward situations and this was no different. When you are a child, your mind is imaginative and you draw your own conclusions based on things you see and hear. Many questions were cleared up that day. Questions like:

“Do you have to pee in a girl to get her pregnant?” Followed by Eeewwwww and laughter.

“If our sister’s clitoris grows, will that turn her into a boy? Is it like an inside penis?” Eeewwwww and laughter.

“So the baby doesn’t come out of the butthole?” “Haha – you said butthole!”

This prompted my mother to to sit us down and watch a program that showed an actual child birth. We sat there in shock, but mostly awe.

As adults, my bothers were the coaches for their wives when they gave birth. I am the oldest son and gay. My sister asked me to be her birth coach– she wanted to be sure that I would be able to experience it for myself. Twenty years ago it was not quite the “norm” for a gay couple to have or raise a child.

Without our mother being as open and honest about sex and sexuality, our lives would be very different, certainly not as fulfilling. Thankfully, this mindset has been passed on to the next generation in our family.

With Momdoms, we wanted to reach families that were not quite as open as our family, by offering a tool for them to use that makes the “smart sex” conversation a little less awkward.

Momdoms has a humorous assortment of 1950s-style condom storage tins complete with tips for parents on why and how to talk about sex with their kids. Each tin includes six FDA approved lubricated latex condoms and can also be customized with your picture in place of the illustration. Turns out that moms and sex are an interesting combination, making anyone get a kick out of Momdoms. Check ’em out!


Dear Husband, When Will The Condom Come Off?

The reality of TasP (treatment as prevention) is having a profound effect of serodiscordant couples today. Scientific evidence shows that under certain conditions, the risk of HIV transmission is so low that doctors now recommend some serodiscordant couple have condomless sex if they want to get pregnant. But for many, updated evidence cannot match the deep-seeded fear of contracting HIV. Armed with sources and facts, this monologue is a personal letter from an HIV positive woman confronting her husband’s apprehensions to start having condomless sex. 

DearHusbandDear Husband,

We have been in this relationship for a year and you know how I feel about you. I think you are the most wonderful man in existence, in my unbiased opinion. We share many interests, we have fun together, and in spite of my HIV status, the sex has been great. There have been no major challenges with my status until now.

As I long for a time when I could have condomless sex and exchange body fluids, an intimate act that feels like none other, condoms are an increasing reminder that we have a barrier between us. Regardless of how much lube one uses there is no condom available that does not feel like a condom. The female condom is okay but as my colleague noted, it is like having sex with a garbage bag inside you, complete with the noise of the crumpling latex.

I did get pregnant the good old fashioned way with my first child from a previous relationship and she is not HIV positive, nor is her father. I want to have another baby, but somehow that conversation gets diverted each time I initiate it. As you very well know, I do want to get pregnant naturally and our doctor recommended we try the good old fashioned way, like other hetero-couples wanting to have a child. We are in a committed, monogamous, trusting relationship. We know each other’s sexual health and HIV status. Scientific evidence presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) and discussion leading up to CROI left me feeling hopeful that soon the condoms would be put to rest.

Gus Cairns explains the outcomes of the latest PARTNER study which is showing promise while waiting for the final results in 2017. The PARTNER study is an international collaboration taking place in several European countries and is funded by the National Institute for Health Research in England and coordinated by Copenhagen HIV Programme (CHIP), in collaboration with University College London (the sponsor) and The Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust, London.

“When asked what the study tells us about the chance of someone with an undetectable viral load transmitting HIV, presenter Alison Rodger said: “Our best estimate is it’s zero” (In Cairns 2014).

Seeing all of this evidence presented, along with knowing about my HIV negative child, makes me anxious as we wait for the time when we can stop using condoms. I trust you and I know you trust me but your refusal to accept new scientific evidence resulting from research studies, information that is not really new, as I was told years ago that under certain conditions I am not infectious, is making me question many things about this relationship. Mark S. King raises the question of whether people living with HIV will ever be considered safe sex partners. He refers in his writing to the ways in which people living with HIV are viewed as “suicide bombers” (2014). While reading his articles, I realized just how much work is ahead for the HIV community. But does there need to be such effort with us as I wonder if we are continuing to make informed decisions?

Who would have thought a condom could create so much stress in our relationship. Stress I was not prepared for and did not see coming as I believed you would eventually accept the evidence presented and change practices accordingly. After all, we are not in a one-night-stand as random strangers not knowing each other’s sexual history, where a condom would be used without question. We have evolved in our relationship. Or so I thought. But the continued use of condoms makes me question whether or not you can finally rid yourself of the fear of HIV transmission.

On a global scale, Bob Leahy (2014), who initially was not sold on the idea of treatment as prevention (TasP), now supports it completely, but he does remind the HIV community of “the huge amount of work that needs to be done, with advocacy at all levels being a sizeable component”, to convince institutions of the need for supporting and implementing TasP. As individuals, you and me are part of the TasP model.

Sex is not as spontaneous as it could be because we always have to ensure beforehand that condoms are nearby. The act of getting the condom ready and reaching for it is a constant, nagging reminder that screams out – “Watch out for HIV the big boogy man waiting in the corner reminding us to constantly be on guard”. I fantasize about the day when we can simply wake up in the morning and have sex without any reminders, with complete intimacy and trust without anxiety and fear.

What would I do if I were in your position?

I cannot say with certainty that I would embrace the idea and abandon the condoms without any lingering fear and doubt. I just do not know. I would like to think I would understand the science of HIV and realize that there is no real risk; that I would abandon my trepidation and in turn abandon condoms eventually. Maybe I would, and maybe I would not, preferring to hang on to the comfort and security of the condom.

Condoms are for one night stands, random sex, having sex with partners whose status is unknown, for avoiding all other sexually transmitted infections. We have none of those concerns. I have to be honest as I share my thoughts. I have thought on a couple of occasions of pursing sex with someone else who wants to have condomless sex. I need to feel the intimacy and deep connection to a man as we have sex that is uninterrupted with reminders, good old fashioned spontaneous sex. I never thought a small piece of latex could cause so much stress and doubt in a relationship. I want to maintain the status quo but on the other hand I want to have sex without condoms.

The last thing I want to do is transmit this virus to you. But as Marc-André LeBlanc (2014) so eloquently explained it, you are in fact safer with an HIV positive partner than with one whose status is unknown. I am beginning to give up hope as I try to explain that in fact, you -my partner- are safer with me as an HIV positive woman with stable, well controlled health status. I am getting impatient. There is growing tension in the relationship. If you cannot trust me and scientific evidence then I am going to begin to wonder if you have really addressed your fears, in depth, about HIV.

The province of British Columbia as an international leader in developing a model of the Test and Treat strategy, recently collaborated with China in offering services for them to implement to reduce HIV transmission through TasP, (Povidence Health Care: 2014), providing further evidence for the need to recognize how treatment does prevent transmission of HIV. I am on and adhere to treatment and am well controlled.

I understand completely and if the shoe were on the other foot. It may take some convincing on my part to trust and believe what is being presented. I am no different from anyone else and my personal perceptions and ideology take time to adjust to scientific evidence which is presented. My education about HIV came from the old fear based strategically targeted place. It is not easy to let go of those fears. They are embedded in our institutions and in our individual psyche, very deeply, I am finding out.

Len Tooley who does HIV testing, explains how “sexual health is often framed in the idea of risk instead of rewards. He goes on to explain how “this may present HIV and those living with it as the worst possible outcome imaginable, which is not only stigmatizing but often irrational and false since many people with HIV are, in fact, just fine” (In Straube: 2014).

So, will you let me know when the condom can come off?


Your partner and lover.

Monologues are independent stories and the opinions shared are the author’s own.

Cairns,Gus. 2014. No One With An Undetectable Viral Load Gay Or Heterosexual Transmits HIV in First Two Years of PARTNER Study. March 4

Leahy, Bob. 2014. The TasP Train Has Left The Station. April 10

Leblanc, Marc- André. 2014. FUCK POZ GUYS! February 10

King, Mark. S. 2014. When People with HIV Became Suicide Bombers  April 2

King, Mark.S. 2014. Will HIV Ever Be Safe Enough For You? March 11

Providence Health Care. 2014. China joins forces british columbia conquer hiv/aids. November 27

Straube, Trenton. 2014. Against All Odds. POZ April/May

Our Hippie Secret Teasure

The first time I saw a condom I was nine years old and slightly too old to be playing pretend. This sounds wrong, but let me explain:

I was sitting in my friend’s parents’ 1992 Subaru station wagon and we were playing a game called “Hippie Road Trip” where we were two hippies driving across America. I’m not sure what this game entailed besides my friend sitting in the driver’s seat of the parked car and turning the wheel every so often to not crash into imaginary pedestrians and animals. While looking through the glove box for a map (we had gotten lost) I came across a box of condoms.


“There was something so thrilling about finding evidence of the adult world.”

I had heard about the legendary pieces of latex in class from the school nurse. She was a portly woman with red hair who had clearly been uncomfortable explaining “the birds and the bees” to a class of fourth graders. Her perspiration and rushed tone, however, had made the topic more exciting, more mysterious. And so it was no wonder then that finding a box of condoms to us was like discovering buried treasure.

“They’re my parents’,” explained my friend, who had christened herself ‘Sparkle’ whilst playing pretend. I too had taken a new name for my character, the most beautiful name I could think of, which at the time happened to be ‘Crystal’. Her parents were in fact real hippies and as a result Sparkle was somewhat of an expert on the subject of sex.

“Here– let me see those,” she said, extending her hand. She opened the box and grabbed a small, plastic square before tearing it open. It was long and cylindrical with a strange almost soft texture.

“Can I have one?” I asked excitedly.

It was not so often that I had such easy access to illicit objects. There was something so thrilling about finding evidence of the adult world. She handed me a small plastic square of my own. Pretty soon the entire box had been completely emptied and every one of the six condoms was unwrapped. It turned out that condoms could fit over your hands, your feet and even the stick shift of a 1992 Subaru station wagon.

Finally, tired of playing with them, we folded and stuffed all of the unwrapped condoms back into their box and into the glove compartment.

Sparkle readjusted her seat and went back to concentrating on driving. I stared out the window of the un-moving car, satisfied with our new found hippie secret treasure.

Monologues are independent stories. Opinions shared are the author’s own. Also, you should know that glove compartments are a terrible and risky place to store condoms. The heat from the car can breakdown the latex and render condoms useless. Do you remember your first encounter with condoms or dams?

Lessons from Watching Lesbian Porn in Class

LesSexMonoThe first time I had sex with another woman I had no idea what I was doing. As I started to take off her panties, she said down to me, “Gloves?”

I remember thinking: “What gloves? What for?”

The practice seemed so esoteric to me. From then forth my whole orientation with safer sex altered. As a teen, I had not fully realized my sexuality and only had sex with (cis) guys. I was surrounded by sexual health messages that greatly encourage safety:

Understand birth control options, communicate with partners, get tested, use condoms.

But there was no enthusiasm for queer sexual safety. Saying, “Use gloves” or “Use a sex dam” is very different from “Use a condom”. None of my education went beyond the scope of heterosexual sex; specifically, penis-vagina penetration.

Clearly, this education ill-equipped me for the “real world”. But it also served a deeper function. Excluding information about safer lesbian sex, or more inclusively, sex between people with vulvas, maintained and reinforced the attitude that it’s not “real sex”, and that women-who-have-sex-with-women don’t really need to practice safety.

As a bisexual (cis) woman who has had penis-vaginal sex before, where did I fit into risks? Do people really use dental dams? Are gloves always necessary for manual sex?  If so, why aren’t gloves promoted more among heterosexually-based safety messages? What sexual acts are less risky than others? I soon realized that I was not alone in the confusing and silent knowledge gap. The most powerful moment of this realization happened during a university course lecture in which we watched lesbian porn.

The class was titled, “The Sociology of the HIV/AIDS Pandemic”. That day we were covering the 1988 ACT UP protest of Cosmopolitan Magazine for publishing an article which (very erroneously) claimed that women were unlikely to contract and transmit HIV. The professor then dimmed the lights and switched on a porno short. Current Flow by Jean Carlomusto stars Annie Sprinkle and Joy Brown getting it on with an array of safer sex props ranging from condom covered vibrators to eating pussy with sex dams. The women fuck on the couch while a broadcast of the ACT UP protest faintly play on the television in the background. This video was specifically made to counteract Cosmopolitan. It was one of the first lesbian porn made by and for women that explicitly shows how to have safer sex.

The professor then bluntly asked the class, “Who here actually knew how to use a dental dam or understood the function of latex gloves prior to this video?

Only a few raised their hands. Among a group of predominately queer, early twenty-somethings this felt horrifying and shocking.

That activist porno is just as relevant today as it was 24 years ago. Lesbians and women who have sex with women, including those who are FAAB (female-assigned at birth), continue to be overlooked in the HIV epidemic. According to a 2009 review by the GMHC, very little research has devoted to the study of lesbian sexual play yet we are still learning new degrees of STI risks associated with different acts such as manual sex, fisting, tribbing, sharing toys and oral sex.

I’m lucky that my first time having sex with another girl was one that encouraged safer practices. Safety wasn’t optional. It was ethical. And it was hot. It opened up my world and cemented my desire to learn more, inform my options, and talk about safety confidently with other partners. But I know not everyone (and lesbians in particular) experiences such enthusiasm- including a lack of concern from medical professionals who assume “queer* women*” experience almost zero risk of HIV and other serious sexually transmitted infections.

For me, safer sex has developed a whole new dimension of excitement because of the political protest attached to it. Feminist mantra: “The personal is political”. It’s partly an acknowledgement that the sex I have with another woman is very real despite hetero-sexist attitudes. It’s also an intimate act of caring for and protecting each other.

Monologues are independent stories. The opinions shared are the author’s own. For more information on sexual safety for lesbians and women-who-have-sex-with-women, the National LGBT Health Education Center is a good place to start. Please do comment and share other recommended resources below.

#MySexPositivity by Angel Noir

This self-help Kinkster and leather champion understands how sexual and gender stereotypes can constrain our minds and fear our authentic selves. Her workshops function to breakdown shame and help people discover and play with sexual creativity in safe, holistic ways. Angel Noir believes that sex positivity is fundamentally collaborative. It will not continue to progress as a community and philosophy without support from each other.     

1) Identify one or two trends, or influential people in the Sex Positive community that you identify with (or are inspired by) and those trends which you relate to not-so-much.

Narrowing down my answer to this question is by far the hardest part of this interview! There are so many exciting sex positive folks and trends right now that it is difficult to choose only one or two! One of my very favorite projects ever is The Gender Book. It allows one to easily discuss gender and breaking free of stereotypes with a wide array of age groups and even provides colorful visual aids. It’s inspiring and easily relate-able. Within the Kink community, I’ve been able to play with gender identity and explore my own expression. I have found great freedom within androgyny as it subverts and transcends simplistic binary, masculine/feminine categories.

I’ve also been inspired by Kali Williams and her work on informed consent and sexuality education accessibility. Erotication is an amazing body of work. Her collaborative site showcases a host of educators I admire in one smart package and gives me hope for a future that includes safe options for exploring sexuality without the threat of being ostracized.

2) How do you define “sex positivity” for yourself and your work? In other words, what is your primary passion and how do you distinguish your writings and interests from other branches of thought within the sex positive movement?

AngelNoir-We-have-a-lot-of-work-to-do-QuoteI believe that everyone should have the right to love and explore their sexuality in the ways that feel right to them without fear of judgment provided there are no consent violations. We have a lot of work to do to break down the many cultural stereotypes that shroud sexuality in shame and secrecy. It’s my goal to support any work that serves that agenda and this is an ever present goal in my own work. Every mind control workshop I conduct or behavior modification program I craft spends at least some time examining each participant’s motivations to ensure that my work is being used in ways that promote this version of sex positivity. Sexual freedom and the responsibility it entails seems to me a logical part of human evolution. It seems equally obvious that we all must work together to evolve.

3) What directions do you think sex positivity will take within the next 5 – 10 years? Or what topics and with what platforms would you like to see sex positivity develop more thoroughly within the next 5 – 10 years?

For me, there are four areas which I watch closely and feel strongly about: Polyamory, Kink, Consent awareness, and sex workers’ rights.

I would love to see far more acceptance of polyamory, the decriminalization of kink, and a serious shift away from the rape culture we currently live in. I believe we have the capacity to accept and embrace the importance of companionship and create safer more fulfilling career options for sex workers. In general, I support the growth of activism that promotes abandoning shame and embracing our authentic sexual selves.

Angel Noir is a sex positive activist, kink and sexuality educator, and neuroplasticity warrior. She is the titleholder for Miss Virginia Unlimited Leather 2014 and is working towards releasing a book on erotic mind control. Her central goal in life is the creation of mutually beneficial interactions and relationships with other self aware, sex positive individuals. Angel Noir spent her early life immersed in a kink-charged environment. This helped mold her views on the horrors of sexual shame that society perpetuates. To overcome her own demons she harnessed the power of neuroplasticity and is now reprogramming the parts of her personality that don’t suit the person she wants to be.

Opinions shared are the author’s own. Want to participate in this interview series? What is your sex positivity?

Galen Fous’ #MySexPositivity

You may never imagine how unconscious symbols, fantasies and archetypal personas inhabit and drive your sexual desires until you open your mind to this unique sex positive approach to understanding the many depths of erotic expression. Pychotherapist and fetish sex researcher, Galen Fous, believes we are in a new era of human sexuality in which more people than ever before are discovering their sexual uniqueness in spite of cultural shame. He is weary of a trend in some sex positive circles that values only clinical, so-called objective science of sex, thus dismissing the emotional depths of erotica and fetish. The beautiful metaphors he invokes are worth a read.

1) Identify one or two trends, or influential people in the Sex Positive community that you identify with (or are inspired by) and those trends which you relate to not-so-much.

Galen profile picAfter centuries of repression, fear, persecution, misinformation and denial, Eros is showing up all around the world in a way that is unprecedented in the history of civilization. The “normal” range of human sexual expression and desire has shifted profoundly. Millions of people across the globe have already crossed the threshold of previous cultural, moral and spiritual norms for acceptable sexual behavior. Millions more stand at the threshold, eagerly peering in.

New tribes are finding each other to participate in, express and explore every range of kinky perversity imaginable, while others seek to connect with a spiritual path of ecstatic consciousness, centered in a sense of divine regard, achieved by channeling their sexual “energy” through the nervous system.

These early-adapters, and there are tens of millions of you currently, are exploring the wilderness of Eros that has been taboo, forbidden, inappropriate and off-limits to the general population of every age since the rise of “civilization“ and organized religion.

Human sexuality is like a gold mine, buried deep within us, that culture, religion, morality, superstition, law and fear has kept secret. Thanks to the Internet, the secret treasure is gushing out of the depths in a volcanic torrent, stoked by the millions of humans digging for and finding the gold within their Eros.

Eros is finally being embraced and recognized as an integral aspect of the human psyche. It is a vast territory, largely unmapped, but rich and alluring in the promise of great sex. While the allure is an irresistible, lusty come-on, it is just the gateway to the depths that are now known to be available. These new pathways have brought about conscious practices that allow you to be in integrity with your values and agreements while being true and authentic in who you are erotically…no matter how dark or perverse, or as light and spiritual you might seek to be.

This new era of Eros offers us the opportunity to: communicate honestly and openly with our partners about our most taboo desires; safely, authentically express, embody and engage our darkest erotic edges; heal the inevitable psychological wounds of sexual repression and shame our cultures embed in us; learn techniques to be more fully present, aware, embodied, enlivened, connected, intimate, and cultivate Eros as a personally sacred experience; develop tolerance and give support and encouragement to those on other sexual paths; and learn to integrate being liberated sexual creatures into our everyday cultural, family and spiritual life.

In other words, the opportunity to live our lives as if our sexuality is normal!!

There are many other researchers, educators and therapists I would like to mention that promote tolerance and sex-positive views that support each person to find their own shame-free truth, sexual and otherwise. But I will limit it to two here:

Stanley Siegel has devoted over 40 years to sex-positive views as a therapist and author. He has recently started Psychology Tomorrow magazine that offers insights and analysis of many current emerging aspect of sexuality.

Another is personal coach and writer Pamela Madsen, author of Shameless:How I Ditched the Diet, Got Naked, Found True Pleasure…Pamela works primarily with women to resolve deep shame around their bodies and sexuality, and embrace their authentic desire from an empowered place.

A trend I find disturbing is people seeking to find safe ground for the mystery and complexity of their erotic desire within the standard socially acceptable frameworks such as scientific, clinical and evidence based theories. On the whole at this point, these tend to remove or dismiss much too much of our human, emotional, embodied erotic experience. I am concerned people will miss out on the mythic ecstatic depths offered by experiencing their own epic erotic psyches and personas, by only focusing on or acknowledging what can be stated within the parameters of the “science or brain chemistry behind this or that”, or the “evolutionary survival rationale” as the reason for all manner of sexual variation, or a “recent clinical study” shows that…”!

This “Science of Sex” approach, in my judgment, may keep us in a heady, rational experience and removes the mythic potency from the soul of our experience. These approaches mask or discount the depths of emotional intimacy, trust and connection that are occurring, the personally meaningful primal mythic journeys that are taken, and overlooks the profound somatic/ecstatic depths of the human erotic experience.

2) How do you define “sex positivity” for yourself and your work? In other words, what is your primary passion and how do you distinguish your writings and interests from other branches of thought within the sex positive movement?


Eros, the god of love

I feel “sex-positive” means to be supportive and tolerant of sexual diversity and to be committed to discover, embrace, and cultivate one’s own personal sexual identity.

My focus within the sex-positive realm as a psychotherapist and sex-researcher is on what I call Fetishsexuality.

A Fetishsexual is a person driven to orgasm or other deep erotic states through their innate, inherent, life-long desire for a particular range of kink, fetish, Dominance, submission, sadism, masochism or other alternative erotic expressions. Just as gays and lesbians are a distinct sexual identity considered to make up 8-10% of the gene pool (Kinsey, 1948), I believe Fetishsexuals are a distinct sexual identity making up a similar or higher percentage  of the gene pool. This is an unverified rough guess extrapolating from my anecdotal review of internet search term data found on sites like and similar sources. The PEM survey is a preliminary work that I hope may initiate future scientific studies about Fetishsexuality.

I believe Fetishsexuality operates through both conscious and unconscious aspects of the personal and collective psyche. In this regard, it is my experience that someone with Fetishsexual identity also has what I define as a Personal Erotic Myth (PEM) that is engaged, from within the unconscious, when they become sexually aroused.

A PEM contains the fantasy imagery, storylines, mythic personas, props, attire, dialogue and actions that drive a person who has a PEM to orgasm or other deep erotic states. This mythos is often expressed in Fetish, Kink, and D/s-BDSM oriented sex, where symbol, myth and archetypal personifications abound.

Some people are quite aware of their PEM. For others it is still buried in the unconscious but shows up in private masturbatory reveries or brief moments in the rush right before orgasm, within sexual engagement with a partner. Many may have caught glimpses of their PEM, or more, engaged it secretly, even well before puberty. In a recent survey, I conducted with over 600 anonymous respondents drawn from a sex-positive and alternative population; nearly 60% stated that they had begun having distinct sexual fantasies before 10 years of age. Furthermore, 40% stated they were already masturbating to their fantasies by 10 years of age. Over 70% self-identified as believing that their sexuality was driven by their PEM.

Some may also have multiple PEMs that ebb and flow in their sex life. For many others, it is still an unconscious but compelling force, just below acknowledged awareness, that drives their sexual desire. This is the aspect of their Eros that they may not have looked at nor engaged in consciously; however, during sex, in the moments right before orgasm, their authentic erotic persona, or “sex creature” as I sometimes think of it, can flood into the body in wild, fierce gestures, accompanied by profane, blasphemous invectives—sound-bytes from their PEM.

My ongoing statistical research project on the nature of Fetishsexuality, the “Discover Your Personal Erotic Myth Survey” has broken new ground in developing a theoretical and therapeutic psychological model in this emerging aspect of Eros. This initial glimpse into the nature and depth of peoples’ Fetish, Kink and D/s-BDSM desires, their origins, and what resists their desires has been illuminating. My mission is to expand and deepen this initial research. You can learn more about participating in the completely anonymous online survey here.

From my work with clients and groups over the last 13 years, I have developed The 5 Keys for Fetishsexuals to consciously engage their darkest edge and find fulfillment in sex, life and relationships. These are: Sexual AuthenticitySexual Honesty, Sexual Empowerment, Sexual Shadow and Paradox. An in-depth definition of these and other aspect of integrating your fetishsexual desires into your everyday life can be found on my site.

3) What directions do you think sex positivity will take within the next 5 – 10 years? Or what topics and with what platforms would you like to see sex positivity develop more thoroughly within the next 5 – 10 years?

I believe the full range of sexuality is heading mainstream. The next few generations will gradually feel the effects of the diminishment of sex-negative attitudes and the expansion of sex-positive attitudes. Hopefully this will make it easier for people to find, embrace and embody their sexual authenticity in a conscious way.

The biggest obstacles will be to shift embedded institutional psychological and moral models of human sexuality. Key areas are in the academic education of undergrad and grad level psychologists and therapists, and in the actual revamping of the psychological and therapeutic models themselves. These are currently well behind the curve of understanding the panorama of sexuality being lived by people in the current era, and will not serve those in the future.

Opinions shared are the author’s own. Want to participate in this interview series? What is your sex positivity?