The topic for today’s article came from a website milestone: A marketing firm offered to pay me to promote their client here on ABL! Which totally intrigued me, until I found out their client is a popular online sex toy shop.
My first thought was it must be a prank. But after research confirmed the offer was legit, my second thought was, How did this even happen? Does my writing appear when marketing firms Google the word vagina?
I shared the wacky news on Facebook, expecting my friends to be horrified right along with me. But the overwhelming response was that I should totally, hands-down, write a post about the use of sex toys, and that there ain’t nothin’ wrong with being paid for it.
I had to break the boring news to them: Although it’s my dream to turn A Brave Life into a career, I won’t settle for just any type of money-making opportunity. And I certainly won’t allow a battery operated dildo to be the first product I endorse. (No YouTube tutorials, that’s for sure!)
But some really smart people I admire were encouraging me to write about sex toys, which meant there are probably some smart things to say on this topic.
The problem is I’ve never used or owned a sex toy in my life. (I think I just heard my parents sighing with relief, two states over from me.)
And the bigger problem is that as much as I adore penis jokes, I’m uncomfortable discussing sex, especially online.
But why would someone like me, whose website seems to have no shame, be uncomfortable writing about sex? I write about tons of scary, embarrassing, truthful things. And hell, 9 out of 10 stupid jokes on here involve genitalia. But sex has always been off the table for me. Except when it’s been on a table. (Ba-dump-dump-cymbal crash!)
See what happened there? Sex is so easy to joke about, but it’s a scary topic to discuss in a significant, impactful way because it requires us to admit to all the complex ways sex makes us feel, emotionally and spiritually. And who wants to admit that? We’d all much rather say that sex is fun and wonderful, and that it never causes stress.
I don’t want to be the lame one to admit that sex can be a lot of other things aside from fun and wonderful. This is (one) reason why I’ve never wanted to discuss this topic in my writing for ABL. Ironically, it’s also why I should.
What You Need To Know About My Sex Life (And Yours)
My feelings were once hurt during sex. And I’ve hurt someone’s feelings through my sexual choices as well. I’ve been a “born again virgin”. (A few times.) I’ve withheld sex from a man I loved out of fear of being emotionally vulnerable. I’ve also given my body away too freely out of fear of being rejected.
See? It’s all very messy and unpredictable, and this is coming from someone who has, for the most part, never really dated an a**hole.
Even when you’re married and in love, your sex life can be frustrating. Even if you’ve only had sex one time in your life, it can change you. And even if you and your “friend with benefits” insist there are no emotional strings attached to your sexcapades, there are emotional repercussions. Always.
So yeah, that’s all I’m willing to share on this topic. Sorry for the lack of a…you know, climax. Ahem.
But I’m okay with this, because I think I’ve written just enough to let you know that you’re not alone in having an emotionally complex relationship with your sex life. In fact, you’d be surprised who among your friends can relate to your feelings, whatever they may be, and how comforting it can be to talk to someone who understands.
Fortunately, no one is asking you to blog about it (unless you’ve got online sex toy companies courting you, too). And you certainly have a right to hide the details of your complexity from the public eye, like I want to. Just don’t hide from the complex feelings themselves. We’re human, and unlike any other living thing on the planet, that’s what sex does to us.
*This article was NOT sponsored by a battery operated dildo, thank you very much.