Tag Archive | "Sexuality"

Crowdfunding for Sexuality Related Projects

While the practice of asking several people for money so that you can do something which, on your own, you’d never be able to afford, is not new, the branding of crowdfunding, and the financial success of companies who facilitate it online are.

And both the branding and bottom lines are so rosy that new crowd funding sites are popping up each year.

I had a very successful experience with crowdfunding on Kickstarter in 2012 both in terms of money (we raised 690% of our goal and became the most funded book of its kind on the site) and in terms of emotional return. After that success I’ve been helping others with their projects and occasionally featuring some of those projects here (like this one, this one, and this one).

On most sites that share statistics we know that more than half of the projects that are launched don’t reach their funding goals. Far from the cliche that sex sells, I think funding a project that’s related to sexuality comes with additional barriers.

I’ve started collecting my notes on what makes it more likely your crowdfunding project will meet its goals, and tried to put some of them together in the article below. I’m also going to continue profiling great crowdfunding projects related to sexuality in the coming months.

Read More: Crowdfunding Your Sexuality Related Project

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Source: About.com


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Sex After a Heart Attack: What Women Want to Know, and What Women Want Their Doctors to Know

Our inability to talk about sex stymies us at every turn. Take heart attacks. Having an enjoyable sex life reduces ones risk of a heart attack. Once you’ve had a heart attack you’re more likely to have another. And the lack of opportunity to get information about the safety of having sex after a heart attack means more of us either don’t resume sex, or when we do, we do so with increased fear and anxiety (not two of the great aphrodisiacs).

So you’d think that the thing to do, if you’re a doctor and you’re preparing to release someone from the hospital after they’ve had a heart attack would be to say a thing or two about sex.

Indeed, guidelines both in the U.S. and Europe recommend that physicians talk with people who have had a heart attack about sexual activity after recovery. Unfortunately research suggests that most doctors aren’t following the rules. When they do, they are much more likely to talk to men than women, making a recent report in the Journal of the American Heart Association all the more important to note.

An interdisciplinary team of researchers conducted 17 qualitative interviews with women, from 43 to 75 years of age, about their experience resuming sex post heart attack and conversations they had with doctors prior to resuming sexual activity.

The majority of women received no information about when it is safe to resume sexual activity. Those that did usually initiated the conversations with their doctors, and overall reported being dissatisfied with the answers they got.

Despite participants reports that they did have fears about the safety of resuming sex after a heart attack, most of the women started having sex within four weeks, and by six months all participants reported resuming sexual activity.

As the authors point out, there isn’t a lack of safety information regarding sex after heart attack, as multiple studies have shown that sexual activity after a heart attack is relatively safe. What is missing is communication, and what the women in this study identified was a need for information to be communicated prior to discharge from the hospital, that it be offered consistently throughout the recovery period, and that their sexuality be acknowledged as a part of who they are. A comment from one of the participants which was used in the title of the article sums it up nicely: “I’m not just a heart, I’m a whole person here.”

Read the Study: Journal of the American Heart Association: “I’m Not Just a Heart, I’m a Whole Person Here”: A Qualitative Study to Improve Sexual Outcomes in Women With Myocardial Infarction

Related: Sex After a Heart Attack ; Myths about Sex and Heart Disease ; Heart Attack During Sex ; Talking to Your Doctor About Sex and Heart Disease

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Source: About.com


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Opening Conversations at the Close of World Breastfeeding Week

In 1991 the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action was formed as a way of responding to a World Health Organization document, the Innocenti Declaration on the protection, promotion, and support of breastfeeding.

Each year they mark the first week of August as World Breastfeeding Week. I can only assume that these campaigns, which are conceptualized as being for an international audience, are created by enormous committees, which usually means that they end up being so generic as to be unrecognizable as relating to many people’s actual lives (case in point: this year’s logo which seems to say that breastfeeding is only for women who have male partners).

But themed weeks like this also provide an opportunity to talk about the things that the organizations themselves aren’t talking about.

Two things come to mind. First is the undeniable but almost entirely unspoken of impact of breastfeeding on sexuality. Even if there weren’t specific hormonal factors worth knowing about so as not to get freaked out by the physical response some people have when they breastfeed, whenever our bodies change, whenever we start using our bodies in different ways, there will always be some potential impact on our sexuality – how we feel about our bodies and ourselves, how we want to use our bodies to both give and receive pleasure, and more.

The other topic I’ve been learning more about lately is Trans* parents breastfeeding. The term Trans* refers to many different kinds of gender identities and felt genders, but in this context I’m talking about learning from parents whose bodies don’t conform to binary expectations of gender.

Most parents who call themselves mom were born with bodies that have a uterus and ovaries, a vulva and a vagina. And most parents who call themselves dad were born with bodies that have testicles and a penis. But that’s not true for all of us. When you add in the question of who has breasts and who can breastfeed, the picture becomes even more detailed and vibrant.

Unfortunately most educational efforts work in ways that only reflect who they are. Since Trans* people are usually excluded they are then invisible in materials, leading many to think that trans people aren’t parents and if they are, that breastfeeding isn’t an option. Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn’t.

If you want to know more a good place to start is with Trevor MacDonald’s blog post on Huffington Post, How I Learned to be a Breastfeeding Dad. You can also check out Trevor’s blog Milk Junkies.

Related: About.com’s Guide to Pregnancy & Childbirth on World Breastfeeding Week

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Crowd Funding Sex Education

I’m not sure if it has to do with my family background, but there’s something about evoking “the crowd” that makes me uncomfortable. Crowd funding, crowd sourcing, the wisdom of the crowd. It may sound sexy and new, but historically, when people become crowds it doesn’t turn out too well for some of us.

And still, I love being a part of crowd funding projects. I have backed over 60 projects on various sites and I published my first kid’s book through the generosity of thousands of backers on Kickstarter.

In the past few months a couple of particularly unethical projects tied to sexuality have tried to get off the ground via crowd funding. The tricky thing about criticizing crowd funding is that the goal when you are running a project is to have as many people coming to your page and sharing it as possible. So sharing the link to problematic projects at once alerts others to the problem and also, in some ways, helps those who are trying to raise money. It’s a lose-lose situation for those of us who care about sexual ethics and justice.

So instead of linking to the badness, I thought I’d highlight a project that, whether it’s successful or not, is definitely part of the solution and not part of the problem. The project, Sex Ed: The Saga was created by Forward Together’s Youth program, an Oakland based organization that has been training Asian youth to be leaders in their communities since 2005.

I wanted to know a bit more about the project, so I emailed and asked. The collective answers came from Heather Bach, Renee Bach, Vy Truong, Fiona Tang, Ervin Lopez, Ellie Cao, Kevin Xie, Chay Tadeo, Kathy Xie, Sharmane Fulgado, Courtney Ng, Sidhartha Taruc, Kevin Lei, Christy Nghe, Irish Quach, Melissa Ma, Christine Lau, Karen Guan, all of whom are involved in the project.

Tell us a bit about Sex Ed: the Saga and why you wanted to make your own sex education.

Sex Ed: the Saga is the epic video series documenting the legendary experiences of Oakland students and their quest for sex ed. It has music, dancing, animation and a lot of funny pop culture references. It’s by and for young people, and the way we’re talking about sex is like nothing you’ve ever heard before!

Sex Ed: The Saga is a way to get young people, caregivers, teachers, and mentors to start conversations on topics that no one else is really talking about, like healthy decision-making, sexual orientation, gender identify, and acceptance.

In Oakland, like in many other parts of the state and country, students are not receiving the information and resources we need to make healthy decisions about our bodies and relationships. Our videos provide an alternative to the misinformation we get from the media, society, and often our schools.

What would you say to folks who think that sex education should be taught by professionals, adults, teachers who have been trained to talk about sex education?
We agree! We want our teachers to be trained to talk to us about sex and relationships in a way that is non-judgmental, inclusive, and information-based. We want the adults in our lives to be prepared to have conversations with us in a way that is respectful, meets us where we’re at, and honors our right to accurate information.

The problem is that that’s not happening right now. So we are taking it into our own hands. We are making videos that can be a great educational tool for adults to use with young people to get the conversation started.

As sex educators we all bring our own experiences, biases, and values to our work. Who we are always informs how we see the world. Can you share a bit of your collective perspective on what’s needed in sex education?
We are a group of Asian, high school and early college aged youth and most of us come from low-income immigrant and refugee families. It’s our families, peers, and communities that inspire us to move forward with this work. This project means a lot to us because young people usually don’t get to decide what kind of sex ed is taught to us. No one else knows better than we do what we need to learn, and we want to make our voices heard.

Youth have very few options to get accurate information. The internet is one of the most common places where youth get their information and a lot of what we find, if we find anything, is inaccurate. Also, the information we do get is just about condoms and pregnancy prevention; it often stigmatizes young parents and leaves out LGBTQ youth. Plus, sex ed classes are boring. No one wants to see another gym teacher put a condom on a banana!

Our framework is about Sex Education Justice–the idea that we have the right to a comprehensive sex education that teaches us about healthy relationships, gender, sexual orientation, and that is relevant to English Language Learner and LGBTQ students as well as students with disabilities. Sex education is a core part of our lives, not a side issue that can just get tacked on to one class at the end of the semester.

Anything else you’d like to say about the project?
YOU can be part of changing the conversation about sex ed. Please donate to our Indie Go-Go campaign today!

Check out Sex Ed: The Saga on Indiegogo

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Fact Checking the Facts of Life

As I travel the country training sex educators I have lately found myself making a new pitch to them. Our job is not to teach the facts of life. I say this partly because I think the most important thing a sex educator does is to help people think and communicate about sexuality, and that task needs to come before teaching about the “facts” of reproduction, contraception, and sexually transmitted infections. But I also say it because the facts (or “facts”) keep changing.

In fact, I’d say that if by the word fact we mean something that is bound to nature and immutable, the word fact isn’t appropriate to what we teach.

I was reminded of this fact this week, reading about the news of two studies published on very different topics.

First, researchers at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research published a report in the journal Nature Genetics that describes the role of the X chromosome (known as the ‘female’ chromosome, as contrasted with the ‘male’ Y chromosome) plays in sperm production. Apparently, at least on a genetic level, women are not from mars and men are not from venus.

And today news about oxytocin aka the love hormone, the cuddle drug, the feel-good, sexy juice, etc… Oxytocin is a hormone that scientists and the media love to talk about as if, upon our discovery of it, the mysteries of sexuality and attachment were solved.

But today it turns out there’s a “dark side” to the love hormone. Apparently it plays a role not only in making good feelings more intense, but in making bad feelings more intense as well! Some details are here.

These new findings don’t invalidate the way we thought previously about either chromosomal sex or the relationship between hormones and emotion. But they do complicate matters significantly. And they should serve as a cautionary tale. Not that the scientific endeavor is pointless. But that it never stops. What we know is forever limited by our ability to comprehend it. Sometimes, as in the case of the X-chromosomes role in sperm production, it takes new technology that allows us to look at something even closer up than before. Other times, as in the case with oxytocin, we need to step back and look at something from a different perspective entirely.

In both cases, the bottom line for me is that If a fact is something that is true not just today, but tomorrow and the next, and the next, I’m not sure that the word should ever apply to the work sex educators are engaged in.

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Digging Deeper Into Sexuality, Disability, and Surrogacy

Last week I suggested that while the New York Times piece on disability and sexual surrogacy in France was full of ableism and condescension worth challenging, it also introduced us to people and ideas worth engaging. I probably started more on the side of critique and could have acknowledged just a bit more of how important and valuable an article it was.

Instead of just saying that, this week I wanted to share a few of the ideas presented in the article that I’ve been mulling over since first reading it.

Is Sex a Right?
In the video that accompanies the article a member of the French National Ethics Committee which earlier this year stated that sexual surrogacy was an “unethical use of the human body for commercial purposes” argues that that sex cannot be seen as a right that belongs to all citizens of France, for if it’s a right, then the government has a responsibility to protect and provide for it’s expression. This isn’t possible, since paying someone to engage in, apparently, any kind of sexual contact is unethical and degrading.

The statement that sexuality or sexual expression is a human right seems, on the surface benign. It’s something that sexuality professionals say all the time in arguing for funding and access to comprehensive sex education and the legitimacy of sexual counseling and therapy.

But it’s considered problematic by many, and not only by those who think all sex work is degrading. Disability activists have challenged the language of rights, questioning whether or not it is helpful in increasing access to full participation in society. A few years ago, while making a documentary for the Sexuality and Access Project I interviewed Judith Snow a Canadian disability activist. Judith talked about the frustration she has with people telling her that she should fight for her rights to sexual expression. She pointed out that if those rights were human rights, then they should be hers by birth, and instead of fighting for them she should be living them.

Others point out that saying someone has a right, when they are denied access from birth, makes the language of rights something that erases inequality and injustice. What’s the point, the argument goes, in saying that everyone has a right to sexual expression when some people are denied access to partners, to the freedom to pursue relationships they choose without violence, to basic information that will help them make informed choices about sexual expression, etc…

Even if those rights are established in international documents, if they are not also made concrete in laws and in every day practice, what good are they?

This isn’t a question with a simple answer or with a single answer, but it’s an important question for all of us to think about and ask ourselves when we use the language of rights, who is is serving?

Do We Need Disability Sex Specialists?
An issue that isn’t raised explicitly in the article, but flows from it and needs to be talked about is whether or not it makes sense to have surrogates with “special training” to work with people with disabilities.

One way people defend the practice of sex surrogacy is by saying that the training includes “special” information about working with people with disabilities. For me there isn’t much of a middle ground on this point. The idea that one needs special training to have sex for money with someone with a disability is just disability-phobic nonsense.

One DOES need special training if your work involves intimate sexual touch or even sexual counseling or education. Sexuality can be a site of great pain for many people and because so few of us are well educated around sexuality, training is required. But if the training is done well, it doesn’t need to be different for people with disabilities. Of course it’s true that most of the time that training isn’t done well. Professionals are trained to work with only a small number of people who can match their communication and practice styles.

But there’s a difference between acknowledging that professional training excludes lots of people, including many people with different lived experience of disability, and saying that professionals need special training in order to accommodate disability. The first acknowledgment puts the responsibility on the professional, where it belongs.

What all clients need, are to be asked the right questions, supported in figuring out the answer that works for them and then listened to. The idea of specialized training seems to reinforce the notion that people with disabilities are passive and can’t participate as fully as non-disabled people in sexual interactions. This is a common belief, but also a false one.

To be clear, I do think that surrogates and all service providers need to be trained about disability issues, particularly about the impact of ableism on an individual and a community. And this is as true when we’re talking about sexuality as when we’re talking about employment or housing or anything else. What I’m arguing against is the idea that there is something fundamentally different about being disabled that makes it useful or even possible to offer specialized training for working with disabled people. I think that leads to more marginalization and poorer services.

Sex Work, Surrogacy, or Sexual Facilitation?
Pascale Ribes, who founded the Disabilities and Sexualities Group, an association defending sexual surrogates in France is also quoted in the article as explaining that talking about sex surrogacy as prostitution is a red herring; “Prostitution is a fake debate; the goals are different…Sexual assistance is about allowing a disabled person who can’t access sexuality in a satisfying way to reconnect with the body.”

The discussion of whether sex surrogacy is the same as sex work is an old one. Most sexual surrogates make a point of saying they are not sex workers, sometimes by putting down sex work and sometimes by explaining the relevant distinctions (which include things like training, working in collaboration with a therapist, and having clearly defined goals and end dates for the work).

One of the nice ways the Times article complicates the issue is by presenting various views and in doing so raising the question: who decides what an interaction means. Setting aside legal definitions, does it matter if you are engaging in sexual contact with someone for pleasure, to learn something about your body and your feelings, for distraction, for novelty, or for some other reason? If we are interested in people and their experience I would say yes it does. It’s also important to admit that in any sexual interaction lots of things are happening. Intimate or sexual contact is never about just one thing. This is true whether or not money is exchanged.

It was nice to hear at least a few perspectives in the article, and that one of the perspectives came from someone providing sexual surrogacy. It made me think about how rare it is for us to hear sex worker perspectives, and I wondered if somewhat more clinical mantle that comes with the term sex surrogacy is what in part made it easier for this perspective to be included.

Personal Support Workers and Attendants
A final point that stayed with me was actually about the poor representation of personal support workers and attendants in the piece. I have for many years been involved in training support workers around issues of sexuality. Much of this work is through the amazing Sexuality and Access Project. Through this work, and through my relationships both with people who use attendant services and with people who provide them, I’ve learned just how complicated these relationships are.

Often they are difficult and are not what either person would consider supportive of healthy. Sometimes they are just the opposite. One line that I always have in my head was from one participant in the project who talked about her attendants as people who sort of live your life with you. They are there first thing in the morning and at the end of the day. They are part of you living your life, from eating and using the bathroom to going to school, dating, breaking up, dealing with grief, experiencing joy, and more.

Because they are meant to be in a support role attendants are often not considered fully present in a space. They may be in the background, but that doesn’t make them any less human, and their presence is felt. Sometimes in good ways, sometimes in bad ways, and often in ways that no one notices. But they are there, and the relationship is worth attending to. One of the many ways that the opening paragraph of the article put me off was that it contrasted a lover’s touch (as desirable) with an attendant’s touch (as undesirable). It’s a dramatic comparison that is the stuff of non-disabled people’s fantasies of what living with a disability must be like. But it certainly doesn’t reflect the sorts of experiences and stories we collected when talking to over 400 people with the Sexuality and Access Project.

Read More: Disabled People Say They, Too, Want a Sex Life, and Seek Help in Attaining It

Related: Disability Sex Education and Information ; Sexuality and Disability Online Resources ; Making Sex Toys Accessible ; More About Sex and Disability from About.com

Source: About.com


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Is Sexual Surrogacy Legal in the U.S.?

The recent article in the New York Times about sexual surrogacy in France included just a little bit about legal issues. Surrogacy is clearly legal in some countries. Israel, for example, has probably the most active surrogate community in the world. Sex surrogacy may be covered by insurance companies when working with a surrogate is recommended following an accident.

In the United States the legal status of the practice of sex surrogacy is much more vague. A few months ago I interviewed surrogates and a few lawyers for an article I wrote about surrogacy, and if there’s one thing I learned it’s that claiming ignorance is no defense. There may not be a lot of solid answers, but here’s what we know, and a few things to think about, if you’re considering seeing, or becoming, a sexual surrogate in the U.S.

Is It Legal to See a Sex Surrogate in the US?

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Source: About.com


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Sex, Disability, and the Price of Admission to The New York Times

Having a perspective that is never represented in public is a tough position to be in. Especially when what you see is something about how silly or wrongheaded things are and how they could be made much more fair, more just, if only everyone could start seeing things from multiple perspectives, including yours, rather than through the narrow lens served up 24/7 by schools, the media, our governments, and our insular and homogenous communities.

For years you might try to ignore or deny what you see. Maybe the rest of the world is right and you’re wrong. After all, there are so many of them, and they all seem to agree. You have times when you think you’re not just wrong, but delusional or paranoid. That you’re actually imagining what you see, or that your perspective itself is a sign of illness, disease, sociopathy.

But hopefully you hang in there. You might spend years figuring it out, thinking and feeling it through, talking with friends and others, some of whom learned from your perspective, or told you that you’re right, that there’s nothing wrong with you, and that the world would in fact be a better place with if your perspective were shared.

And then maybe one day, after being ignored for your whole life, and never seeing someone with your perspective given a platform to speak to the public, someone comes along and says they find you fascinating and they’d like to help you share your thoughts with the world.

There’s just one catch. They get to write it all down, and then they will edit what you say, and rearrange your words, and even add some of their own. And above it all, in big letters, at the very top, will be their words, not yours.

What do you do?

This is the position that journalists put disabled activists in every time they decide that the subject of sexuality is one that might suddenly apply to people with disabilities.

And this is the conundrum that I was thinking of while reading an important but typically ignorant piece in the New York Times about sexual surrogacy in France.

The ignorance announces itself in the title:

“Disabled People Say They, Too, Want a Sex Life, and Seek Help in Attaining It”

First of all, “disabled people” aren’t some small, homogenous and easily defined group you can point to and say “Look! I found the disabled people!”. In fact, as disability activists often point out, disability is part of identity, rather than a medical diagnosis and what’s more by most definitions of disability, disabled people comprise the largest “minority” of the global population. Since the article isn’t about specific functional limitations, it implicitly acknowledges this, but the headline explicitly doesn’t.

The article itself and the accompanying video focus on one woman, Laetitia Rebord. Even though the video is edited for maximum dramatic effect (complete with music that lets you know how poignant each and every moment is), it’s clear that Laetitia is funny, insightful, and has a complicated take on issues related to sexuality, bodies, desire, and rights. Instead of conveying any of that, the article begins:

“In her sexual fantasies, she is a fit and impetuous blonde who dominates her male partners. In real life, she is a virgin who relies on an electric wheelchair, her body touched only by home care aides and medical personnel.”

And so everything that is actually interesting (and complicated) about Laetitia and about this story and about the broader social context is reduced to a stereotype that feeds the basic ableism that will already be stirring in most New York Times readers as they read this article.

To be honest, in my fantasies I’m a fit and impetuous blonde who dominates my partners. And in real life I’m none of that. Does the fact that, for now, I move through the world using legs instead of wheels, make this fantasy any more or less tragic? Is the New York Times aware that our fantasies almost never conform to our realities? Or that we generally don’t really want our fantasies to come true (I’m sure my imagination would be sorely disappointed by real life as a blonde)? Folks at The New York Times might know all this, but they wouldn’t apply such logic here, because it’s assumed that everyone who wheels around wishes they could walk for real.

It’s sort of an amazing feat of writing. An article which is ostensibly about a group of disabled people fighting for their rights manages to strip the main characters of agency at every turn.

Take for example the one line description of Mark O’Brien, the poet and journalist whose article about seeing a sex surrogate was the basis for the 2012 film The Sessions. Here, what was a bold journalistic enterprise and a major personal journey becomes “the sexual awakening of a disabled man by a sexual surrogate.” This is kind of like describing someone climbing Mt. Everest, and giving the credit to the ropes.

But even having said all of that, I still think the article is important and I’m glad it was published. It raises several questions about sexual rights, sexual support, and what it means to have a sex life, which are rich questions to consider. And if you can read through the self-importance of the paper of record, it also introduces us to a few people who have managed to hang in there and are trying to help us understand the world a little better by example. I wish they didn’t have to sacrifice so much for the lesson, but since they have I think it’s the least we can do to dig in and consider these other perspectives.

Next week that’s just what I’ll do.

Read More: Disabled People Say They, Too, Want a Sex Life, and Seek Help in Attaining It

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Source: About.com


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The Original (and New) Magic Wand

I bought my first Hitachi Magic Wand on December 23, 1995. I still have the receipt, pinned to the bulletin board above my desk. I keep it there in the spirit that I imagine store owner tape up the first dollar they made. It’s part of my origin story both as a sex educator and as a sexual person.

I was giddy as a schoolgirl walking into Good Vibrations for the first time that Monday afternoon. I had been working in sex stores for almost 10 years and Good Vibrations, which at the time was a worker co-operative, had taken on mythic proportions in my mind. I was a fan, and hoping not to be disappointed. And I wasn’t.

For years after that first Magic Wand purchase I would begin presentations about sex toys by saying that the vibrator changed my life. I wasn’t being hyperbolic. Using the Hitachi Magic Wand had changed my life, or at least the sex part of it. The way my body responded to the Wand was something I couldn’t have predicted and it was something completely new. No human moves as fast or as consistently as the Magic Wand, and so without it, I simply never would have known how something like it would feel or how I would respond to that special feeling.

I’m reminiscing about my love for the Magic Wand because this iconic vibrator, a symbol of the feminist transformation of sex toy retailing, and to some extent of the way we speak in public about pleasure, has undergone a change of it’s own.

It’s still a Hitachi product. It still has the same quality, power, and speed. But for the first time in over 30 years, the Hitachi name is gone and the renamed Magic Wand Original has been updated.

By way of back story consider that this one consumer product, so near and dear to sex toy lover hearts, represents a tiny blip on the radar of Hitachi. When counterfeit products began appearing on the market it made keeping the Magic Wand in production seem even less worthwhile. Fighting the knock offs is time consuming and expensive, and it’s not clear how much of a priority one vibrator is for a company that builds satellites, water systems, and energy grids.

But thanks to Vibratex, the family owned Japanese vibrator importer that is responsible for that other icon of vibrators, the Rabbit Pearl, the Magic Wand lives! Vibratex has been distributing the Magic Wand for years, and they made the pitch to Hitachi that the product was not only worth keeping, but worth improving.

Enter the new Magic Wand Original. It’s got some updated “internals” (for the nerds among you, these include: a new circuit system for the power toggle, a new, more ergonomic toggle itself, more internal ribbing, sealed, self-lubricating bearings in the head, and a new head that is made of hard resin instead of die-cast metal, and a few other upgrades). And while Hitachi still makes the product (and owns the trademark), their name has been removed from all the packaging, which apparently is going to allow marketers a bit more leeway with introducing the Magic Wand Original to a new generation of sex toy aficionados.

They have also updated the packaging! Every year there are hundreds of new vibrators introduced to the market. And for more than 30 years there has been nothing that compares to the Magic Wand. Thanks to the folks at Vibratex it seems like we’ll have it for another 30 years or more.

Review: The Magic Wand Original (buy direct, $55)

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Source: About.com


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Saving Myself for Marriage

Over the past few weeks I have been emailing with an About.com reader who decided to wait for marriage before having sex. He made this decision, but he’s worried about it. What struck me the most about his first email was his expression of doubt. This, I think, is unusual.

Not that people who try to abstain from sex don’t have doubts about their choices. Like all of us, they must. But when you read about the issue of abstinence or chastity particularly in the media, you rarely find people equivocating. Instead you have a polarized set of opinions; there are those who think abstaining from sex is healthy, or spiritually right, or simply better and there are those who paint abstainers as religious nut jobs who are missing out, and who somehow don’t really know themselves because they aren’t having sex.

This is the way things are presented in the media and when individuals are asked to publicly speak in defense of a choice that is being made political. In private conversations you’ll find people are far more confused. And what we all need is a chance to talk it out and think it through.

Which is what we did in our email exchange. Because sometimes spectating can be engaging, I’ve compiled and condensed the conversation and link to it below.

Read More – No Sex Before Marriage?

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Source: About.com


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