Goodie bags include gifts worth $100, plus the chance to win a signed copy of Eco-Sex and $225 in prizes. For full details visit: RenewYourselfParty.eventbrite.com
Want a special discount? When you register, enter the special code “ecosex” or just click on the image in this post to get an automatic discount. Register now — space is limited.
Join me for a sexy eco chat on Wednesday February 13th to ask all your sex questions and get a chance to win a signed copy of Eco-Sex, and a box of Sensuous Green Goodies provided by Goodebox.com! Delicious prizes from some of my favorite brands like Sir Richards Condoms, Persephenie, Blossom Organics, Erbaviva, John Master’s Organics, Vapour Organic Beauty, Swipes, Revolution Organics, and Metropolis Soap Company.
No wilting roses or scandalized blushing here, ladies; it’s time to live in the 21st century and own our sexuality. With that said, we also want to do it in a healthy, conscious manner. You’ve likely heard about how readily our skin absorbs less than good for us ingredients from personal care products – body lotion, shampoo, shower gel, facial treatments, lipstick, and the like, but have you ever considered that the skin on our most personal parts is even more sensitive and absorbent? Have you read the ingredients list on that bottle of lubricant or body massage oil? How about that spermicide on the condom? Have you considered what that little battery powered bullet of joy is made of? Or thought about the impact your sheets, lingerie and other trappings of sensuality have on the planet?
Author of Eco-Sex: Go Green Between the Sheets ‘Sexpert’ Stefanie Iris Weiss certainly has, and she’s not afraid to share. We all have questions when it comes to our love lives, from dating and marriage to love, lust and sex. It’s nice to have an expert to ask! With that in mind, and to get you in the mood for Valentine’s Day, we’ve asked Stefanie to join us for an hour of her time on Wednesday, February 13th, from 6-7 PM PST / 9-10 PM EST, for a live chat where everything’s fair game. (Although, please keep your questions respectful.)
Topics could include asking her recommendations about sexual toys and products, relationship questions, sex questions, general opinions and more. Stefanie will answer them as quickly as possible and any that are still lingering unanswered once the chat is over will be addressed in turn at her earliest convenience.
Participants can also enter to win a prize package of Sensuous Green Goodies provided by Goodebox, including a signed copy of Stefanie’s book, and products from brands including Blossom Organics, Erbaviva, John Master’s Organics, Sir Richard’s Condoms, Vapour Organic Beauty, Swipes, Revolution Organics, Persephenie and Metropolis Soap Company. Three runners up will also win a Goodebox with samples of many of these products.
To join, simple respond to the EcoSalon Facebook Event Invitation as “attending”, complete the Giveaway Entry Form and be sure to be online at www.facebook.com/Ecosalon on Wednesday, February 13th, at 6pm Pacific time / 9pm Eastern time. Only active participants in the Live Chat will be eligible to win a prize. Looking forward to seeing you there!
Have questions you want to keep anonymous? Email us:firstname.lastname@example.org before we’re live and we’ll ask Stefanie for you!
I’m joining the lovely ladies of Green Beauty Team for an exclusive event in NYC, just before Valentine’s Day. I’ll be sharing Eco-Sex tips and tricks, signing books, and speaking with a crew of brilliant eco-beauty experts. Click the image for details:
‘Til Death Do Us Part? Watch my Huffpost Live interview about monogamy, cheating, and relationship options
Direct link to the video here.
You may be a sister, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a grandmother, a cousin or a girlfriend. Maybe you’re just someone that loves a woman. I don’t care if you’re young, old, just started a family or past menopause — if you are any of these people, you should know that we are facing the greatest emergency we have in decades. Wake the f**k up right now, or you may wake up some time in 2013 and realize that you’ve made the gravest mistake of your life. If you have a vagina or know someone with a vagina, things are about to get real.
There are a million distractions competing for your attention, but this one is the most urgent. This is no joke. It’s not hyperbole — it is life-or-death, deadly serious. It’s a massive crisis, and if we don’t respond in the voting booth in a few weeks, our lives will change, in drastic and horrifying ways.
So I’m telling you right now, my sisters, to WAKE THE F**K UP. Samuel L. Jackson told you that you needed to do this a few weeks ago, more generally. It’s all true. But if you’ve ever used a tampon, or know someone who has, ignoring this election is NOT an option.
Maybe you feel like politics don’t matter to you — you sat out 2000 and and 2004 and even 2008 because it seemed like your life wouldn’t change no matter who sat in the White House. But this time it’s different, so you seriously need to wake the f**k up.
Stop watching Honey Boo Boo, or Keeping Up with the Kardashians. Stop reading 50 Shades of Grey RIGHT NOW. Stop worrying about celebrity baby bumps or your own love life. Our culture can keep us from noticing that our rights, liberties, and most important in this moment — control over our own bodies — might be taken away.
Unless you are one of the tiny minority of radical Christians whose only goal in life is to make abortion illegal for millions of women they’ve never met, in the name of Jesus, by any means necessary, then you must vote for Obama. Because if you vote for Romney, or if you just don’t vote, you are insuring that we all lose our right to choose. Most Americans believe in the right to choose, even though Republicans love to lie about it. Most normal people of all political persuasions want abortion to be legal, available, and rare.
What happens if Romney wins? If you’re currently pre-menopausal, and you have sex with men, you might be forced to bear an unwanted child. You might wake up and realize you’ve missed a period and begin shaking with fear — because you have no choice about what to do with your pregnancy. Whether you’re married with kids or single and not ready to start a family, every time you have sex you’ll be subjecting yourself to the threat of eighteen years of child-rearing, or bearing a child and putting him or her up for adoption. Wake the f**k up before this happens to you or someone you know.
You could forget to take your pill, a condom could break, your guy could forget to pull out in time. These are just a few of the reasons we have unwanted pregnancies, but if Romney wins, there may be no option but carrying a fetus to full term. Romney currently says, out loud, that he believes abortion should be legal only in cases of rape, incest, or the life off the mother. He also said he’d be “delighted” to sign a bill outlawing abortion in all circumstances. (His running-mate thinks abortion should be illegal in EVERY instance — rape or incest be damned.) Are you ready to wake the f**k up?
If your birth control fails, and you simply cannot deal with a pregnancy at this moment in your life, and opt for a back-alley abortion, you’ll be risking your life. This is what women used to do before Roe v. Wade in 1973. This is wire hanger territory. And if the police find out about your illegal procedure or attempt to self-abort, under a Romney administration, you might go to jail. Of course he won’t say any of this, but it’s what his cronies, people who have donated millions to his campaign, believe. He will owe them everything — and he’ll owe you nothing. So wake the f**k up now, before it’s too late.
If you’re in your reproductive years, you should be running around with your hair on fire, screaming. You should be walking the streets everyday and telling everyone — strangers, neighbors, family members, colleagues — to vote or be responsible for sending women back to the nineteenth century. That was before we had the right to vote and when we were literally property of our husbands. Outlawing abortion is a slippery slope to the elimination of all women’s rights — and it’s the most immediately consequential to our everyday lives. Wake the f**k up, sister. Please.
This summer we learned that an influential segment of the Republican Party believe in something called “legitimate rape“. Last spring we found out that the governor of Virginia wanted to subject women to transvaginal ultrasounds before allowing them to have abortions. Since 2010, hundreds of awful, terrifying, anti-women laws have passed in local legislatures and more misogynistic bills have been put up in the House. Most of these laws have to do with your body — from personhood to defunding Planned Parenthood. (I’m not even going into contraception here, but that’s another issue that should make you wake the f**k up — because the Republicans don’t just want to make abortion illegal, they want to make it impossible for you to use birth control.) Do not let Romney fool you — he is on board, one hundred percent. His running mate Paul Ryan co-sponsored legislation with Todd Akin (Mr. Legitimate Rape) that redefined the definition of rape — on the assumption that a lot of women casually lie about their rapes. That’s how Romney rolls.
Especially if you live in Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nevada, Virginia or New Hampshire: WAKE THE F**K UP. Because of the way our electoral college works, those states decide this election. So if you’re a woman or know a woman who lives in any of those states — this emergency is yours to address. We all need to call our neighbors, take to the streets, do whatever we can to make sure Obama wins, but for you, it’s about getting yourself and everyone you know to the voting booth on November 6th. (Or before, if your state allows early voting.) If not — what happens is your fault. I don’t think you want that kind of karma, sister.
Especially if you’re a (state) swinger, you’ll see what feels like thousands of commercials in the next few weeks. They’ll try to convince you that A) Romney’s views on abortion aren’t that radical and B) that it doesn’t matter anyway, because the economy still sucks (which is debatable anyway). I ask you, women, even if you’ve been unemployed and blame it on Obama, do you want to live in a country where having sex could ruin your life forever? Maybe you think, “Hey, I’m middle class, I can afford to fly somewhere to get an abortion should I need one.” Really, woman? Do you really want to live in that country? Because if Romney wins, that is EXACTLY where you will live. Unless you’re Ann Romney or in the .00001 percent and your private jet will whisk you to Paris for a safe procedure, this matters to you.
I’m not going to bore you with the way the Supreme Court works, which is why this is such an emergency. Republicans are going to do everything to tell you that none of it is true, because they want to win. It’s not that all of them hate women, and think we should be barefoot, pregnant, and worshipping Jesus 24/7. (Even though a shocking amount of them do want this.) The ones that just want to win this thing, because they have a vested interest in wining — money, power and such — are throwing all the women in the country under the bus. They’re lying to you, ladies, and even though I don’t usually pray, I’m on my knees asking you not to fall for it.
WAKE THE F**K UP. And VOTE.
Til death do us part? Really? That long?
In Part 1 of this story, we looked at whether we as humans were meant to mate for life. If you believe we were, if you can say you’re one of those lucky ladies who got hitched to her peacock — a stallion in the sack who is also an awesome companion, good listener and all around partner material — kudos! You marry him, you have kids and then inevitably you find yourself desiring him less. Wait a minute — why is nature so cruel?
Of the many problems in the conventional model of heterosexual marriage is the opposite trajectory of male and female libido that begins in the thirties. Women enter the prime of their sexual lives, a time when hormones are saying “MORE” and we truly understand our needs, desires and rhythms. But when men hit 40, their libido begins its decline. It’s not necessarily a steep decline (all of this is unique to the individual). But if women’s needs are surging while our long-term partners are beginning to feel less urgent about sex, it’s not an ideal fit. So-called cougars may be onto something deeply biological, something that goes way beyond Demi Moore and Samantha Jones.
I wrote last week about some of my girlfriends and their wandering eyes — what’s the cure? Some would argue that the only option, if you want pleasure, is to have an affair. Interestingly, the taboos around extra-marital shenanigans seem to be softening. Witness Ashley Madison, a site specifically tailored to men and women seeking non-spousal sex. The Brits have maritalaffair.co.uk. The afternoon visit to one’s lover has been a rite of passage for the French for time immemorial. They call it the cinq à sept.
Not all women are up for outright cheating, even if the taboo is dying. It may sound insane at first, but you might be brave enough to have that conversation with your man. First, you must confront whether you’d be okay with letting him have a dalliance, because that may be part of the package. And let’s be frank — many of us aren’t ready for that. But open relationships were recently covered in the New York Times Modern Love column. A cultural shift, perhaps?
You can try date-nights, toys, fetish, role-playing, new positions and plenty of other tips and tricks to bring the magic back. If it’s just that your husband’s dirty socks and the inanity of driving the kids to school everyday that is making you want other men, well then, maybe those tricks will work. It’s true that the issues we confront in our domestic lives make a thrilling sex life challenging. But what’s harder is facing whether what you really want is novelty — a new, naked person next to you in bed. Because no matter how many times you play Anastasia and Christian Grey, your old man is still your old man. Even if he gladly puts his dirty socks in the hamper every morning.
Other, more radical options: Separation. Memory erasure. Going on anti-depressants (oops, they kill libido).
Rather than focusing on whether it’s time to call it quits when the sex is fading, perhaps we have to face that attraction will inevitably end. Maybe it’s about developing more consciousness around our desires and acknowledging the awesome power of our sexuality, and letting that guide us more in our choices. I realize this completely leaves out the whole, “Do I want to have kids with this guy” thing. (That’s another article.) Serial monogamy is a healthy option for women that aren’t concerned about their biological clock. Facing the tacit acknowledgement that nothing is forever is a pretty bold leap to take, especially in our marriage-obsessed culture, but a lot of us are putting our toes in the water.
So, ladies — after five, seven, or seventeen years, rest assured your wandering eye does not make you a bad person. It makes you human — it makes you a woman. Even though it’s complicated, I know one thing for sure: shutting down our desires isn’t the answer.
Note: This post first appeared on EcoSalon.com in a slightly different form.
“There’s no denying that we’re a species with a sweet tooth for sex.” -Christopher Ryan
Ask anyone who’s married or in a relationship of more than a few years: long-term commitment is HARD. Lately, a few of my married friends have admitted that they’re feeling attracted to men who aren’t their husbands, and the guilt is just crushing them. It got me thinking: what makes lust for others start and what (if anything) makes it stop?
Attraction is a force nearly impossible to describe; only poets do it justice. We feel it, we don’t spend time analyzing it. And yet so many of us end up in sexless marriages or long-term relationships that deaden over time. Some get the two-year itch, the five-year itch and the seven-year itch. But damnit — it’s quite an itch, and not scratching it can lead to frustration, projection and depression. Also, divorce.
Here’s one answer: we’re not meant to mate for life. There is a growing array of scholarship debunking the myth of monogamy as our natural state, including the seminal (no pun intended) Sex At Dawn: The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality by Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha. The authors are a married couple, but that’s by far not the most fascinating thing about the book. The super-micro version of their thesis is that in terms of human history, we just invented monogamy like, five minutes ago — because we went from hunter-gathers to landowners. Before that, we lived communally and children were raised by the clan.
After the advent of agriculture, men realized that they had to know the paternity of their children to pass on property rights. Thus, monogamy was born a mere 8,000 years ago. (Romantic love came way after this — the concept was invented in the 17th century. Up ’til then, marriage was a merely a business contract, or so say the authors.)
So monogamy is a cultural myth, and yet so many of us fundamentally believe in “til death do us part.” Forget about applying a magical self-help fix here; it’s going to take some major consciousness-raising to wrap our brains around these conundrums.
Getting It Right the First Time
Some of us marry people we’re not sexually compatible with because we don’t value our own sexual needs enough; even “liberated” women who have lots of sex before marriage. We buy into the heterosexist view that women must partner up with strong providers, ones that will make good dads, etc. (And some of us need to admit that we’re dealing with massive father complexes.) We’re unconsciously parroting evolutionary psychology’s conventional view: women are meant to be monogamous, bring up the babes and thus propagate the species, while men are meant to spread their seed. The underlying assumption is that women aren’t really into sex — we value motherhood and shopping more.
Let’s get something straight: Women are programmed for pleasure. It’s just society’s built-in misogyny that throws a wrench in biology’s plan for us. We’re not taught to value our bodies, our sexuality and our desire enough. Imagine if we taught teenage girls the value of sexual pleasure at their first period? What if we gave our daughters not just a box of tampons — but a vibrator, too?
But no matter how important it is to honor pleasure, expecting hot sex to be the only foundation for a relationship is rather ridiculous. You can’t always build authentic intimacy with someone you’re desperately chemically attracted to.
Often the one you lust for will not be the one you want to have a conversation with in the morning. (And sometimes, off the charts one-night-stands turn into long-term relationships. There’s no map for this stuff; life is messy and unpredictable.) When we know the difference between love and lust and find someone that stimulates both mind and genitals it’s all kinds of magical, but this confluence can feel as rare as a finding a peacock on your fire escape.
This is why so many of us end up with “good men” who don’t know how to properly please us. (Remember that oxytocin released at climax, is the same hormone that floods your body to make you forget the vicious pain of childbirth. It also apparently makes you forget when a guy is great in bed but a douchebag the rest of the time.) Theory: if we can get rid of the Madonna/Whore complex, maybe we can kill off the “boring but good man/sexy bad boy” complex, too.
Read more on EcoSalon.com
Stay tuned for part 2 of this story, coming soon.
Note: This post first appeared on EcoSalon.com in a slightly different form.