My partner and I ventured out to a vaccinated, tested and masked, indoor (and outdoor) kink conference last weekend at a San Francisco Bay Area Hotel.
Allow me to introduce you to some of that experience.
Like everyone else for the past two years, kinksters have been in lockdown.
The education and social events that did happen, were restricted to zoom calls, so it was a pleasure to see old friends, and be with others who identify as sex positive, open-minded, curious, sexual explorers.
The crowd was made up of old-school BDSM leather community, latex bound fetishists, puppies and handlers, dominants and submissives, groups of furry animals, rope and suspension masters, wax enthusiasts, polyamorists, monogamists, seasoned players and wide-eyed newbies, to name just a few. These conventions are for both the experienced and the curious.
Kinksters showed up in all their flavors of background, culture, race, sexual orientation and ages, ranging from 20s to 70s. The attendees numbered in the multiple hundreds, with most staying in the hotel over the weekend.
We spent the daytime hours choosing from multiple workshops, and the evenings, mingling in large convention halls, that were converted into ‘public play spaces’, outfitted with equipment and beautifully furnished lounge areas that supported whatever high energy or laid back experience people preferred.
As with most kink conferences, it was well coordinated, well attended, and happily embraced as a place for sexual explorers to gather and enjoy the fellowship of like-minded friends. It was a time and space to drop our outside personas, and just be our unapologetically kinky selves.
Here are just a few of the workshops that were offered:
The Art of Feminine Dominance
Body Handling and Energy Skills
Can I Really Ask That?
Core Skills for Deep Dominance and Submission
Creating Amazing Scenes
Cultivating Your Why
Flexible Boundaries and Firm Limits
Rope Bondage for Complete Beginners
The Story of Your Body
Speaking From The Bottom
Spanking and Caning
The Concept of Play
Some of you may be asking, what does this have to do with me? I’m not kinky.
I want the couples I coach to know, without a doubt, that sex is more than just intercourse.
It’s actually a vast and diverse exploration that can last a lifetime, taking you into realms of intimacy and expression that are uniquely tailored to who you are regardless of what your desires are. This what I help couple and individuals figure out.
I (along with Wikipedia) define Kink as “unconventional sexual practices.”
I believe we have all fantasized or secretly desired sexual experiences that may be considered ‘unconventional’. It’s the beautiful nature of our erotic minds to engage with ideas that create arousal in our bodies.
Sex comes in many flavors and can offer a variety of feelings. It taps into our fantasies. It reveals our deepest secrets. Sex can take us on journeys, and then deliver us back home to ourselves, feeling more authentic and connected to our desires.
Whatever kind of sex my coaching couples want to engage in, I want them to know what’s available to them, and choose their sexuality based on self inspection and self awareness.
So whether you’re a kinkster, or a tantrika, or a romanticist, or a sensualist, your sexual education should include knowledge of the full sexual spectrum that’s available for you to choose from.
How do you know when you’re ready for sexual explorations?
As a sex and intimacy coach I know that getting to the point of having conversations about exploring new things takes preparation. Sometimes there are relationship issues like communication, or trust, or just straight-forward relationship skills that need to be developed before a couple can feel ready to open up to each other erotically.
Couples often start out feeling excited to learn new things, but they can hit emotional roadblocks that can shut their learning down. Miscommunications, hurt feelings, jealousy, disappointment, unmet expectations can all arise when we open ourselves up and share what feels protected and hidden.
When I suggest to a couple that they might benefit from incorporating new erotic play into their sexual dynamic, it’s obvious that the relationship has to support that happening. All three entities need to be on board – the two people and the relationship.
I help my clients approach sexual explorations in service to their relationship and their intimacy.
Your Erotic Menu
In my e-book, Your Erotic Menu, I introduce 5 sexual styles that span a wide spectrum of sexual expressions. Those are Sensual, Tantra, Romance, Passion, Fetish, and Kink. Each one has its own language, its own sexual energy, and its own psychology.
We all fall somewhere on this sexual spectrum, based on our sexual history and what sex means to us. What we’ve been exposed to usually informs our preferences.
Take romance for instance. It’s the socially sanctioned sexual style we’ve all grown up with. We’ve witnessed romance depicted in films, tv, books, or magazines all our lives, but it doesn’t mean we know how to DO romance, or how to give our partner the kind of romantic sexual experience they may want.
The same applies to the other 5 sexual styles. We’re required to be beginners again, exploring new ways of finding intimacy and expressing our eroticism. These are the conversations that help couples grow and get comfortable in their sexuality.
By learning a broader scope of sexual expressions we can start to explore and expand our sexual tastes, and by doing so, we introduce new sides of ourselves to our partner.
Sexual empowerment and agency means learning who you are sexually and teaching your partner how to love you the way you want to be loved, whatever sexual style that is.
Our desires can change throughout our lives, and often do.
Likewise, couples can grow and change in how they experience sex together.
What that looks like is different for every couple. But having a coach and a structure that guides them in this kind of vulnerable conversation is very helpful. In the end, sex can remain an ever-evolving exploration for two people in a relationship.
There’s no right or wrong way to express your eroticism. What works for some, doesn’t work for others. In the world of sexuality, we learn to leave our judgments at the door.
The more you learn about the fascinating world of human sexuality, the more at ease you will be with your own explorations, as individuals, and as a couple.
Maybe you aren’t going to find yourself at a kink convention or a Tantra retreat anytime soon, but you can start focusing on this part of your relationship right now by working with a coach who specializes in sex and intimacy.
And then start the conversation by using Your Erotic Menu to learn more about yourself and your partner.
Helping couples find their path to love and intimacy is one of my greatest joys. If you want to know how relationship coaching can help you along your path, set up a Discovery Call with me and let’s talk.
P.S. – Kiri Honey’s Falling in Love Again Summit is having a final replay party this weekend. You have two more days to listen to any of her interviews with relationship experts for free. After that, there’s a cost. Listen to my audio interview here, and learn more about me, and the work I do with my couples.
Be sure to download my list of 186 erotic activities that I outline in my new e-book, Your Erotic Menu.
It may be the single most impactful step you take toward your sexual evolution. (I can confidently say, your dates nights will never be the same!)
(Mail about sex will often get sent to promotions or junk. Move me to your inbox so we can continue to stay in touch regularly. ☺)
It’s pretty easy these days to find out what’s going on people’s minds when it comes to sex coaching. Type it into a search engine and voila, you get back 7 questions about sex coaching, most commonly asked on the internet. I decided to answer those 7 questions here, because my bet is that you might have some of these questions yourself.
When we commit to live with an open heart, we do whatever it takes to keep it open. That looks different for every couple, but every couple has their unique path that leads them to an open-hearted love.
Most couples who come to me for intimacy and relationship coaching have one thing in common; they want to know how to get their partner to change. They’ve gotten so used to paying attention to their partner’s shortcomings, that they’ve forgotten, or chosen to ignore their own 50% of the relationship equation.
No matter who you are or how happy you are in your relationship you’re going to experience conflict. Experiencing conflict in your relationship is not sign of weakness, nor a lack of wisdom. It’s simply a polarized dialogue between two people holding opposing positions. How we navigate this dialogue is determined by how skillful we are at moving through conflict as a couple.