A Catalyst Con Non-Review

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I had an amazing time at Catalyst. But it’s not really a story. There were some great presentations, and amazing people. I really enjoyed meeting so many folks working in different ways towards the goal of a more sex-positive world!

I even managed to hand out a handful of business cards. Which was always exciting and fun.

And the conversations were incredibly interesting! Some great insights and experiences shared.

But, to what my prior post was about: Figuring out some direction.

I’ve got really two at this point: non-professional adult education or going for a Masters in Public Health.

The former was a direction I had been considering all along. But the MPH was inspired by some fantastic talks and discussions with folks working in that field. It’s something I had never considered before. I figured oh, maybe social work or some other form of direct therapy. But, I’m a VERY political person and after seeing the talk (first one of the con, mind you) How to be a Sex Positive Warrior in Public Health, I was floored.

Shout out to Kaitlyn Scalisi, Maria Quinn, and Rick Aguilar for putting on this panel!

I really am considering going this route. While it’s the more challenging one, I feel like getting into public health to help try and turn the ship, not just arrange a cabin, could be the best use of my energy and interest. I still don’t know a ton about what’s involved in the degree, but between those fabulous presenters and some friends I know that are working on their MPH’s right now, I will be investigating further!

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Cross Post: Party Communication

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Oh hey, I wrote this awhile back on Life on the Swingset and forgot to cross-post it here.

Check it out: http://www.lifeontheswingset.com/19329/party-communication/

It’s Aliiiive…And Prepping For Catalyst.

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It’s been far too long since I last posted. What’s up with that?

Well.

Summer. It’s a busy time with a lot going on. So I’ve been enjoying it and not musing at home as much.

I did have a third play party. Which was the first one that had a lot more guys than women. Fun times still and the women certainly weren’t complaining about the ratio. :3 But then I took a little break from hosting until the end of this month…hoping for a big party and good times!

And that brings me up to September, which will be Catalyst Con. I may not have much to say leading up to it, but will likely have a lot to unpack afterwards. 

Catalyst Con is a sexuality and relationship conference being held in LA this time. My plan is to talk to as many people as I can and find out two things: 1) What does your job relating to the conference topics involve, and 2) how did you get here? I really want to break into the sex education or related therapy industry but the question is what route to take to get where I want to be. I’ve got ideas of what some people do and how they got there through podcasts, but I know I’m not getting the whole story and need to learn more!

And meet some really awesome sex-positive people!

Being a Better Advocate for Myself (or how I’m not currently)

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I went to an awesome party with lots of great people last night.

And I had a really fun time helping my primary achieve some major fantasies of hers. I have some fun bite marks to prove it, even.

But I came to the party really excited to meet new people and play with someone(s). And I did meet people, as per the usual. And as per the usual, I did not play. I’m realizing I’m just really bad at asking people for what I want.

Maybe out of fear of rejection? But in a setting like that, even a rejection will be respectful and light because I’m not going to be a douche in how I approach someone.

And. It’s not even necessarily an issue of asking someone at a party. I think my inability to really clearly answer the “what do you like?” question easily to a play partner (especially if being dominated) points to a bigger issue of knowing what I definitely want and being a good advocate for those desires.

What did I want?

Asking myself this, I came into the weekend very much looking forward to playing with one or multiple people. Having only hosted a party before, I didn’t feel super comfortable to play there due to hosting duties. But in this case, I shouldn’t have any of that.

Early on in the evening, I wanted all sorts of things. I came into the weekend with the idea in mind that I had not fisted anyone in quite some time and wanted to rectify that. I wanted to eat someone out, I wanted to maybe even fuck them. I wanted to flog or paddle them. I wanted to try some fun toys on them.

As the evening went on and I fucked and flogged my primary, my interests shifted. I still really wanted to fist someone but I was just dying to eat some pussy. And I really had some opportunities and people I could have asked. But I didn’t.

Some of it was legitimately bad timing. But I also erred on the side of approaching it like someone far less experienced than myself should approach it. Instead of saying hey, I would really like to play with you but I’m going to have to jump in and make this a threesome in a minute here, I shut down, stopped talking, and she even mentioned she was going to wander, possibly as an open invite. But I had closed any interaction opportunities.

I honestly feel quite bad about this. It totally would have been kosher to ask that of her. And I really know better that it is okay to ask these things.

Similarly, my partner and I met someone at a recent party and we found out each other was open. There was some attraction there but I had settled on just waiting it out until the next time bumping into each other to broach anything. But, she messaged me and asked if I/we were interested in her. I said oh totally, I didn’t realize you were interested or that I could just have asked.

I’m not doing myself any favors by not advocating for myself and my desires. And nobody is going to read my mind. Or make things happen for me. Especially being so lucky to be surrounded by some really awesome sex positive people, it’s silly for me to not ask!

Up next: a working list of things I know I want.

 

A New Year’s Eve play party that wasn’t…

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I’ve hosted a NYE party the past five years at my apartment and invited a variety of friends over. It’s mostly been an evolution of my current friends at the time but was also a mix of old ones that would pop up and join the festivities. But, I was a bit tired of hosting every year so I was going to take the year off…

Until everyone badgered me into it again 😉

But there was a twist. I made a little Google Docs survey to poll friends on their interest in a play party. I soon realized I had definitely reached the critical mass needed to pull one off. So why not NYE?

Part of the survey results

Part of the survey results

Two problems. One, finding enough of them that didn’t already have plans and getting them to come to mine. Two, I didn’t want to leave all of my (for lack of an easier term) vanilla friends out of the festivities. So, I made a second invite to the people I thought would be interested in the play party, telling them about the rules and that they would have to appear vanilla until after midnight or whenever the other people left.

Things went great. Well, for a typical party…of course, an 8pm start meant people started arriving at 9:30pm. But that’s how it goes…

About 8 vanilla friends showed up and we had 19 people total. But four of the vanilla folks hopped to another party for the ball drop. And the remaining four left shortly after. So here we were, just 12:30, and free to break out the sexy fun. Except, everyone was just hitting a great buzz from the champagne right then and were busy chatting!

So as things went along, the mood mellowed out and turned into a circle discussion about the protocols and drawbacks of the kink and swinger scenes (with some poly discussion as well). Fascinating conversation and enlightening to all. It was a wonderful time. For various reasons the energy level dipped and play started to seem like it wasn’t going to happen. It ended up being a wonderful party with great and sexy people, even though there was no play party.

That said! I’m totally stocked up for hosting one in the future. Play parties aren’t cheap to throw but most of the stuff you buy you can reuse so it’s an investment…