Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Prehistoric Sex-way more exciting than it sounds.... a review of Sex at Dawn-The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Day Sexuality

Sex at Dawn, The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Day Sexuality had my head spinning for days. I am generally interested in any and all information regarding sex, but this book was more addicting that the Twilight Series and Fifty Shades of Grey combined.

The book questions the "monogamous" nature of human beings, and presents factual data that supports evidence to the contrary. I put "monogamous" into quotations because once you read the book, you realize that we have to start defining the word to a specificity in which we generally don't in American conversations. Monogamy can mean so many things to so many people.

As Christopher Ryan points out, MANY people believe that Penquins are the "perfect" examples of monogamy in the animal kingdom. What those same people probably don't realize is that the penguins' monogamous arrangement only lasts about 11 months, enough time for gestation and to help their young out of the "nest." They are then likely to go out and mate with another partner, and create more offspring. While I know some people who act like penguins, this doesn't seem the "perfect" example our current model of 'til death do us part' is referring to. There is one primate who does practice lifelong monogamy.
The Gibbon... who never leaves the "house", doesn't get to hang out with friends, has very little sex, and oh, not much intelligence... perhaps "monogamy" isn't something to strive for?

Ryan and co-author Cacilda Jetha, both contribute to the book. Although their words are not presented separately, you can see the definitive difference in writing styles. I enjoyed this quality, as it feels like you are listening to their casual conversation.

They do heavily focus on the argument that monogamy is not within our true nature, so if you're against this idea for religious or societal reasons, you may not make it through the first few chapters. If you are hell bent on the idea that we should hold ourselves to an ideal that is nearly impossible according to our biological evolution and are not open minded enough to hear the supporting evidence, then keep the book and your mind closed. I don't say this as a judgement of your choice, I do believe there is value in marriage and monogamy. Consider this more of a precaution. This is serious stuff! It may leave you feeling betrayed by the world, your chosen leaders, and the people around you. Proceed with caution. It is also nice to read that we are not a selfish, aggressive, or murderous people that past studies of human nature like us to believe. So before you pass up the opportunity to give it a go, know that you will read more than just facts about sex, you will be exposed to other studies about different aspects of human nature that might delight you.

I was shocked at the data that disproves many of the theories on which we have based our understanding of ourselves and our relationships. I devoured every page, reading random passages back to my husband (yes, I was questioning monogamy to the one person in this world who might actually be offended). Poor guy had to decipher the thoughts I was spewing his way, and even still, was intrigued and inspired to the read the book for himself. I found the information to be liberating, thought provoking, and fascinating. As a sexual woman in modern day society who feels that I have a deep understanding of my needs and desires, I was turned inside-out by this read.

I have always believed that marriage as an institution has been unsuccessful, and that it should be revised in ways that work for the people we have become. Sex is at the root of the cause much of the time. I am often asked for advice from women who are unhappy in their marriages. They feel the need to to cheat, leave, or divorce their spouse, and it always perplexes me to witness their desperate decision between affair or divorce. Why are these their only two options? Why aren't we able to have respectful, honest, and loving conversations with the person we once loved enough to MARRY, in which we ask for what we desire? Women who want their husbands to seduce them, but are so afraid to have this talk. They would rather have their indiscretions make decisions for them. We are so fearful of hurting our partner's feelings that we'd rather have them feel lonely and miserable, or worse, find out about our cheating and let divorce be the consequence. As if this is easier? Better?

If the topic of sexuality is of interest to you, grab this book at your earliest convenience. And if you value your marriage, read it together. Discuss the definition of monogamy within your relationship. Determine what is acceptable, and where the boundaries lie. Ask your partner what they desire. You are the only two people who decide what is right and what works for you.

I only have two regrets about the book.

1. That I didn't buy a copy to own, as I feel I will want to go back and reference the book for details.

2. That the book doesn't really discuss homosexuality. There are instances where homosexuality is included in the data, but there's no real discussion about where it fits within prehistoric life.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fifty Shades of Grey Inspired Challenge

Are you ready to take on the Grey?!

Does your bedroom routine need a make-over? Feeling like you've lost the excitement and spontaneity in your relationship? This 30-day challenge might just add the passion and romance you're looking for. Whether you've read the books, liked the books, are into bondage play or not, the scenes from the series have definitely lit a fire in the pants of women all across the country. While you may not have a Christian Grey laying next to you at night, you can create the sex you desire by implementing some of these... ahem, tools.

For this 30-day challenge, you will need a few things...

Grey tie, silk sash, or other restraint. (a different color tie, scarves, etc. will do)

handcuffs and/or cable ties (ouch!)

bed restraints, spreader bar, or comparable restraints

crop whip and/or flogger

Pleasure balls

Vibrating anal toy, or metal butt plug

Magic wand or other vibrator

razor and shaving cream


sexy food

access to a bathtub

How long this Challenge takes is entirely up to you!

You may do them all in a matter of weeks, or you may decide you like it so much that you continue your Grey Challenge for the rest of your intimate lives. Yes, it could be THAT good. So how do you get started?

Challenge #1-Communication

Christian Grey is an excellent communicator. Just one of the things women love about him. He spells out exactly what he wants, and asks Anastasia to agree to a contract so that nothing is vague. As you journey into your world of Grey, I suggest you communicate your needs, desires, and yes, limits, with your partner. You don't need to have written contract, but it does add a nice touch!

Challenge #2-A gentle restraint

One of the first things Christian does to Anastasia is to tie her up with his grey silk necktie so she can't touch him. he then leaves while he goes to get an iced cold drink (yes, it's obvious where we're going here). Upon his return she is giddy with anticipation. What will he do next?! As expected, he sensually teases and stimulates her with the ice and his mouth. Kim Basinger and Mickey Rourke may have done it best in 9 1/2 weeks, but ice play never disappoints. Later in the series he uses Metal Handcuffs and cable ties (from when he first goes to see her at the hardware store where she works), but these may leave marks, so if you don't want to have to explain, you might want to avoid these.

Challenge #3-Spank me Daddy,

While Christian Grey has a need to punish "little brown-haired girls," the sexy act of the spanking isn't lost on his psychological therapy. Anastasia is very turned on by the stinging slap he delivers to her soft pale flesh. She loves the care he takes to alternately spank and soothe her. Spanking can be done the wrong way; however, so if you're going to allow your partner to give you more than just a love pat, make sure to get some advice from the pros. Check out the Adult Spanking and Discipline Handbook.

Challenge #4-Whip It Good

Crop whips and floggers, like the ones used in the book don't have to be as scary as they might sound. There are several beginner styles available and even the ones that can be used to create pain, can also be used to tickle and tease instead. The sound of the leather tapping your skin may be enough to get you off, but the sting of a good whip can really get the blood pumping. Drag a flogger up and down a naked body for stimulating effleurage. Play with a crop whip by giving a tap on the ass, on the clitoris, or on the breasts. Increase intensity depending on your level of tolerance and pleasure.

Challenge #5-Make me your slave

By using more than a gentle restraint, you become completely vulnerable to your partner. Make sure that you've discussed your soft and hard limits, that you completely trust your partner, and that you have decided on a safe word before getting yourself into hardcore bondage. Even with some less serious equipment, you can be effectively bound and gagged, so don't think that even though you're not shackled to a wooden cross that you're not playing for real. Door restraints and bed restraints are perfect for keeping your arms and legs open and your body accessible to your lover while standing or laying down. You can be strapped in face up or face down, giving them full control. Anal sex might cross their minds, so make sure you've discussed this idea. In the book Ana finds his drawer of anal toys and is very intrigued. Later he finally uses a sleek vibrating metal plug on her, and she can't believe the pleasure it brings. Be sure when embarking on any kind of anal play, you use plenty of lube, and communicate well, to ensure that there is no damage done to this sensitive area. While a glass of wine is nice to relax you, too much alcohol can numb your body to the point that you don't know if it's hurting you. This thin skin tears easily, so make sure you're well aware of what's happening with your body.

Challenge #6-Shave it off

Christian Grey loves to bathe with Ana, and he does so several times in the trilogy. In one flashback, she remembers him shaving her. Shaving off your pubic hair creates a sensitivity that increases pleasure during intercourse. And if you're not already shaven, you may appreciate the visual of your newly naked genitalia. Make it an event, and shave each other. Be sure to have plenty of shave cream, a sharp razor, and a slow hand. Nobody wants a quick shave when there's a blade near their most intimate parts. The only drawback to this sexy scenario is the regrowth. So make sure you use some rash free shave products to reduce or eliminate ingrown hairs and razor burn... ouch.

Challenge #7-Get cooking!

Not only do Christian and Ana have some thrilling moments in the sack, but they also have some out of the bed/playroom. Having sex in places outside of the privacy of a closed room brings on a whole new element of excitement. Get your sexy on in the kitchen! Blindfold your lover and fulfill them with decadent foods (again, it's been done before on the big screen, but who doesn't like a good feeding?) Don't worry about making a mess, or doing the dishes. Get messy in the easiest room in the house to hose down.

Challenge #8-Wear me out

One of Ana's favorite experiences is when Christian has her wear pleasure balls. He does it when they are headed out for a night with his family.... brilliant. Prolonging her pleasure makes for even more explosive sex later. Try wearing pleasure balls out to dinner, or to a work related event. The weighted presence of these nifty balls will provide a gentle vibration throughout the night. Your movement creates their movement. This will bring on a secret excitement between the two of you, since nobody else will know why you're smiling. :) Then when it finally comes time for the long awaited satisfaction, remove the balls and replace them with him.

Challenge #9-Elevator Sex

Mr. Grey is right, "There's just something about elevators." Whether you're in an elevator alone, or with a bunch of strangers, there's a strange urge to do something bold. Maybe it's that you're in a confined space and time is limited, or maybe we've watched too many movies. Elevator flirtations make for amazing foreplay, so give it a try next time you're staying out of town, or headed down from the rooftop bar.

Challenge #10-Try not to come

What Christian enjoys immensely is having control and possession over Ana's pleasure. He repeatedly tells her that she is not to touch herself when he's not with her, and then instructs her when to come, or not, during their love making. While this task is not an easy one (hence, the "challenge"), it can be fun to test your will power. I'm sure we've all prolonged an orgasm or two, but can you do it when you're being pleasured by a Magic Wand? The one he uses in the book HAS to be a Hitachi, or something like it, but with that much power, you'll most likely have no say over the matter. You're coming whether you want to or not. So try something less intense like a clitoral stimulator that he can hold against you. Try not to come, until he give you permission. Do the same for him. You know when he's about to make his final plunge before climax, see if he can hold off until you give him the magic word.

Challenge #11-Car Sex

High speed car chases can make a gal horny, but Christian always plays it safe. They pull into a parking garage before going at it. Car sex, while uncomfortable, is always hot. Blow jobs and hand jobs while driving can be dangerous, so be cautious when taking on this challenge. Park in your own driveway, or find a parking garage of your own. Make sure you wear a skirt for easy access without having to get completely naked. If you happen to have a sexy car, take it outside onto the hood! Just be sure the engine's cooled off.

Challenge #12-Make Love

For a few people, this might be the hardest challenge of all. By making love to your partner, you put yourself in an emotionally vulnerable position. By opening your heart to your partner, you share a spiritual bond that allows you to breathe each other in, dive into their soul, and interact with them in a way that might be too scary for some. Christian was never able to "make love" to anyone before he met Ana, and he embarked on a new journey of his own while she began her sexual life. They had many firsts together because of this. Even if you've been with your partner for years, there's still plenty of "firsts" that the two of you can share together. Be open to the possibility of becoming closer to your lover, take on the challenge of being more committed, more honest, and more sexual with one another and see where this journey takes YOU!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Why women love Fifty Shades of Grey, and how to have your own Mr. Grey

With the latest craze of trilogies centered around erotic fiction, it's a wonder how the Fifty Shades of Grey became so popular. I hear women saying, "Isn't it just porn?" Well, not exactly. Like porn, erotic fiction doesn't always include a good story, in fact, some can be downright ridiculous. Fifty Shades isn't an exceptional book (sorry fans). It's not an amazing piece of literature, or a profound story. I will say that I have enjoyed reading the books, and love that suburbia is buzzing! What Fifty Shades does provide is a look into our intimate lives, and what might be missing for many American men and women.

Christian Grey is a gazillionare in this story, who's extremely handsome, sexy, talented, and sexually gifted (like many other men out there, I'm sure).... He meets a young virgin woman who challenges his normal behavior of contractual, consensual sexual relationships, because she's not into becoming is submissive. He is smitten by her, for reasons unknown, and decides to give it all up for the sake of love, and of course, her. It's definitely not a realistic love story, but what Fifty Shades readers are most drawn to, is the attention he lavishes on her, his interest in fulfilling her desires and giving her pleasure, and the sexcapades they embark on. Mr. Grey is a controlling man, who sets the stage for their love making (and fucking), on every occasion. The housewife in all of us loves the idea of not having to make a decision, initiate sex, or think, in general. He is lustfully attracted to her, and he tells her. He is very communicative about his desires. What he will do to her, how she makes him feel, how she looks, how she smells.. all making Anastasia Steele feel wanted, loved, and desired in every way. Married women all around the globe miss the times in their lives where they may have known a lover who did the same, or long for a lover who would make them feel that way. *Lovers take note- if your wife or girlfriend is reading this book with fervor, she may want some of the banter, flirtations, and compliments that Mr. Grey bestows upon his Ana. So ladies, this doesn't mean our men are solely responsible for creating these Mr Grey fantasies. There's nothing stopping you from texting a quick flirtation, or answering in a suggestive manner the next time your husband communicates with you. Tell him what you want, ask for what you want, and let him become the lover you want him to be. Highlight your favorite scenes in the book, and leave the book on his side of the bed with a note saying that you'd love for him to do this to you. If you don't create the space for your lover to appear, he won't. If you say to yourself that your husband would never fuck you like Mr. Grey, he won't. Give him the tools, show up for him too, and see what kind of "kinky fuckery" the two of you can create.... but what about props? If you don't have a Red Room of Pain and you'd like to turn your bedroom into your very own playroom, there are tons of products out there than can be discreetly installed. Door play kits will do if you don't have wall shackles to restrain your lover to. Bed restraint kits are perfect for people without four-posted bed frames, and of course, there's a full selection of starter whips, floggers, and paddles for fun fantasy play. For more intricate tools and heavier duty restraints, you may want to check out JT's Stockroom. And if you need any of the products from the book to make this happen, I'm just a phone call or email away, or you can shop discreetly online :) We will also be holding a book discussion at the studio this summer, so stay connected via Facebook for all the details! We'll be starting our Fifty Shades of Grey Inspired Challenge soon, where you can act out all the scenes from the books, igniting the passion in your relationship.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

How to have the man of your dreams...

This may sound like a lofty claim, but really it's quite simple. Having the partner you've always dreamed of is a realistic notion, and with a few simple steps, you CAN have your cake, and eat it too....

As the saying goes, "Art Imitates Life." So I am using Hollywood's examples of love to add color to my basic philosophies on creating happy relationships.

With the recent split of Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, I've found myself thinking about what went wrong. Sure, it was doomed from the beginning you say. He was a hot young celebrity, and she a sexy older woman... which means only one thing... at some point, she'd just be too old. But I don't think it's that basic.

From what we can gather from the tabloids, it sounds like he did crave some strange from the younger set, and she MAY have even indulged him. There were rumors of threesomes and indiscretions, afterall. However, I think the underlying cause of what we can blame on "her age" is the self-doubt and insecurity. So, step #1 to having the man of your dreams: Be confident and love yourself.

What Hollywood has also taught us, is that honesty can make a relationship work. Celebs Mo-nique and Sydney Hicks declaring their open marriage confirms that they each have needs as human beings that may not always be met within their personal relationship. This doesn't mean that we should all be in open marriages, but what it does suggest is step #2: We should clearly discuss our needs and expectations both before and during our relationship.... scary I know, this means communication. Btw, needs are subject to change.

And Step #3 is to create the partner of your dreams.
Yes I did say create. I don't mean nagging your husband to do what you want, or complaining that he never "this" or doesn't "that." Creating the partner of your dreams is using your mind to focus on the best attributes of the person you love. I'm sure you saw the movie Shallow Hal? The message of that film wasn't that beauty is within. It wasn't that we could love someone who wasn't attractive to other people. It's that WE create the beauty we see in the world. Feelings of love, and even lust aren't created by our eyes, they are feelings that swell in our minds.

You're probably thinking, "You said this would be easy." But I said it would be simple. It is simple to love yourself, be honest and communicate, and think good thoughts. What's difficult is letting go of the other stuff. Self-loathing, doubt, fear of rejection, selfishness, resentment. On days like today, we are reminded (rather obnoxiously) to love and cherish one another. Just don't forget to carry it with you every other day of the year.