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How sex toys empowered me after trauma & shame

In December of 2009, I bought my first sex toy, and it was incredible. Here was an entire industry dedicated to the act of bringing my body pleasure. Not for anyone else, but for my own enjoyment. And it wasn't presented as secretive and embarrassing and shameful: it was bright purple. And for the first time, my body felt like mine and my sexuality belonged to me. Since then, sex toys have been an active interest of mine, and I've learned a lot about them — and about how important they are.

SEATTLE EVENT: Sex Work is a Feminist Issue on April 22, 2019

Seattle friends! Join PROS BEFORE BROS author Ariel Meadow Stallings from the Offbeat Empire for an evening of discussion with Pike Long, Deputy Director of St. James Infirmary, the nation's only clinic operated for and by people in the sex industry. We'll dive into the details and differences between sex work, trafficking, and exploitation using an intersectional feminist lens.

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Asexuality and queerness redefined sex for us (& how we're making it work)

What is sexual compatibility? Insecurity made our life a little rocky early on. I worried that my partner's asexuality was simply disinterest in me, while she worried that I might prefer someone else. But after nearly seven years together, we've ironed that out — and in the process, built a sex life that we both find satisfying, exploring a non-traditional definition of sex. Here are the tools that we use to help us to define sex for ourselves…

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My child was sexually harassed on the school bus & the reality set in

Yesterday should have been a normal day. It started off that way. But instead it became a first for my eldest daughter. My daughter asked a boy to stop using profanities, and instead, he used them more and more, especially directed at her. And then he threatened her, repeatedly.

When the bus did stop, she ran as fast as she could and into my arms. Her whole body shook with fear and anger. That was the day our daughter became the victim of sexually violent language. She is ten years old. The boy was twelve. She was riding the school bus home from fifth grade.