taboo

Annabelle River's picture

When Sex Negativity Is Kinda Hot

I recently finished reading The Edge of the Bed: How Dirty Pictures Changed My Life by Lisa Palac, which I highly recommend, because I agree with almost everything she writes.  The part especially sticking with me has been Chapter 6, in which she analyzes her kinky desires that don't just deny, but appropriate her anti-sex Catholic upbringing:

At its core, my Daddy fantasy isn't about my father but about Our Father Who Art in Heaven.  I'd taken the dynamic of love and punishment, which terrorized me as a child and made me feel helpless -- kneeling down and sticking out my tongue to receive his body, whispering my most sinful transgressions in a dark confessional, doing penance to show my love -- and turned it into a powerful source of erotic pleasure.  It wasn't a conscious decision, but then, sexual fantasies rarely are.

...Despite my fear that all of my intellectual processing would ruin by best sexual fantasy, it didn't.  It's still a turn-on because I'm still struggling with the after-effects of Catholicism and I always will be.

Personally, unlike Palac, I was never raised with the idea of God as an old man who would send me to hell for sexual adventurousness.  Instead, the messages that my sexual desires were wrong came from pop-psychology and a specific strain of feminism.  Without God or hell, wanting men to dominate me sexually was a sin against Women's Liberation and a transgression against my Mental Health.  My sex-negative clergy got most of its ideas from Andrea Dworkin.  And I consciously rejected it years ago.

arvan's picture

Male cleansers for hire - The dangerous practice of 'widow cleansing' is starting to come out into the open

From Angela Robson at  The New Internationalist:

Healthy conversation: a group of men discuss the taboo of widow  cleansing and (left)former cleanser Esban Ochanga.

Healthy conversation: a group of men discuss the taboo of widow cleansing and (left)former cleanser Esban Ochanga. Photo: Frederic Courbet

 

The men sitting in the shade of a large thorn tree on the outskirts of Kano-Angola village, 10 miles inland from the shores of Lake Victoria in Kenya’s Nyanza province, are in buoyant spirits today. There is bravado, there are lewd jokes, but there are also long periods of silence.

One man in particular commands attention. As soon as he begins to talk, the rest of the group listen deferentially. Esban Ochanga is tall and slender with a far-away look in his eyes. He has called the men together to talk about the practice of widow cleansing, whereby Luo women, after the death of their spouse, are pressurized into having unprotected sex; ostensibly to allow their husband’s spirit to roam free in the afterlife. It is a tradition rarely spoken about in public. ‘I knew my brother had died and they told me it was AIDS, but I thought a Luo could not die because of that virus,’ says Ochanga. ‘So I cleansed his widow and I contracted HIV. That is what killed my first wife.’

Annabelle River's picture

Kink Reality vs. Kink Fantasy

A little over a week ago, I had the pleasure of attending a presentation by Laura Antoniou titled "Too Kinky for Words" - addressing kinks that are considered taboo even among most of the BDSM community. Specifically, at the very beginning, she had every single person present write anonymously on a slip of paper our most taboo sexual fantasy - one we've never acted out, one that frightens or shames us. Then she collected all the papers, and spent the next hour and a half reading every one of them aloud and, anonymously, making fun of every person in the room. With an explanation about how laughter liberates us from fear, be it fear of judgment or fear of our own darkness.

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