Here’s what it means to me

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Womanizer WOW Tech on Unsplash

is a sex-positive publication, but what does that really mean? To be honest, it might mean slightly different things to different people, but as the editor of , I thought it might be useful to lay out a bit more about what it means to me.

The short dictionary definition of sex-positive is this: having or promoting an open, tolerant, or progressive attitude towards sex and sexuality. This is the most basic aspect of what it means to me. As someone who writes openly about sex and sexuality, I’m all for being tolerant, and progressive around everything related to talking about sex and sexuality. …


Where is your personal responsibility now?

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by ev on Unsplash

I guess you could say that there’s nothing that I dislike more than a hypocrite. If you can’t walk your talk, then shut your mouth and stop talking. …


Motherhood and sexuality can and should co-exist

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Edward Cisneros on Unsplash

Recently my friend Junkman submitted an erotic story to the publication I edit, Sensual: An Erotic Life. It was a story about a new mother who finds her breasts leaking while out on the job, and she asks a favorite customer to help her by suckling them. It’s a tastefully done story with a bit of humor in it, but still, we had a conversation about whether some people might find this story to be “too much.” He was concerned that some people might find it too fetish or too taboo.

But why shouldn’t a new mother have a consensual sexual experience, even if it involves her breast milk? There are a lot of mores and expectations that come with motherhood, and one of those is that women should prioritize their children above everything else, including their own needs. It almost goes without saying that her sexual needs should go by the wayside. After all, she’s a mother now. Mixing the two just comes across to many as freaky, gross, or wildly inappropriate. …


Plus our favorite essays, erotica, and the writer of the week

Image for post
Image for post
Image: SpiritBunny on Pixabay

Some weeks Sensual gets a lot of essay submissions. Some weeks the vibe leans more towards erotica. This week was one for poetry, with a wide variety of writers, topics, and styles. One newer writer said she had heard that Sensual was the best place to publish erotic poetry. We’re honored if that is indeed the case.

Of course, as usual, we’ve got all the good stuff you want to read. Below we’ve highlighted some of our favorite Sensual offerings that came in during the past 7 days but don’t forget to check out the rest of our recent offerings here. …


Moving from just extra-pair sex to a world of atypical love and connection

Image for post
Image for post
Image Licensed from Adobe Stock

When my husband James and I opened up our long-term monogamous marriage to other lovers several years ago, we made the decision to only see other people together. We were in the midst of a very connected and sexually exploratory phase and we wanted to see what adding in other partners might bring to the mix. We weren’t trying to “spice up our love life” and we certainly weren’t bored with each other, so it made perfect sense to date only as a couple. …


It’s quite possible to love more than one person at a time

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

One of the misconceptions about polyamory that I find the most frustrating is the persistent belief that this relationship style is at heart an inability to commit to any one person. This is a belief rooted in the notion that since you can really only love one person at a time, any intimate involvement with more than one person must be superficial and focused solely on the sexual component.

First of all, I’d posit that polyamory is actually the opposite of a fear of commitment and in fact is the ability to commit to more than one person at a time, on a variety of levels. Not every committed relationship has to look exactly the same and have all the same components in order to be a true commitment. For example, I live with one of my life partners and don’t even see the other one in person anymore since we now live far apart. …


Taking time away from everyday life in order to fully process hard stuff

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Alexandre Chambon on Unsplash

Intentional grieving allows us to listen deeply to our hearts instead of reacting mindlessly to our emotions.”

It was a tough holiday season this year, the first one without my mother, who passed away in early September at the age of 89. But it was also my first holidays living in a world without parents, or any family of origin to speak of. They are all gone. I’m the only one who is left. No cousins even, just a few second cousins whom I like but am not particularly close to. As much as I miss my mom, I think that part has been the hardest to adjust to. I’m not just an orphan (at age 56) but someone who is grappling with a whole new paradigm that was unexpectedly much more destabilizing than I anticipated it would be. …


Netflix offers up a morality play on the dangers of non-monogamy

Image for post
Image for post
Image: Wikipedia Commons

“Great,” I thought to myself the other day when I first learned of a new Netflix movie about an open relationship. “Here’s finally a story about people like me.” But it turns out the only thing worse than very rarely seeing the kind of life you live depicted in a movie is to see it grossly misunderstood and judged. turned out to be nothing more than a morality play warning people of how vapid and doomed to failure open relationships are, and presenting the relative boredom (as they depicted it) of monogamy to be worth the price of love.

, which started out very promisingly is about Martin, a divorced pharmacist who is still hung up on his ex-wife and Gabriella (Gabi), a physical therapy assistant who admits to getting bored easily with anything that isn’t new. They get together one night through a dating app that allows users to indicate whether they are looking for a relationship or just a hook-up. …


Our favorite pieces published in Sensual this past week, plus a featured writer

Image for post
Image for post
Licensed from Adobe Stock

This week in Sensual: An Erotic Life was a hot one for erotica, with lots of new writers and great sexy stories published. And we’ve also got our usual array of compelling essays and sensual poetry. Below are links to the highlights.

Our newsletter format is changing slightly, coming out now on Sunday afternoons rather than on Friday afternoons.

Beginning this week we will be featuring one writer in each newsletter, showcasing his or her work and celebrating that writer’s contributions to the Sensual community. …


The identity politics of the white men who think that it is

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Melany Rochester on Unsplash

The crowd who stormed the Capitol on Wednesday came from a variety of factions, from Proud Boys and other White Nationalists to more garden variety Trumpists, but what they had in common was that they were overwhelmingly white men, men who feel their cultural centrality slipping away as minorities and women continue to gain ground.

The cult-like sway that Donald Trump holds over some people is directly related to his total embodiment of the 1950s era masculinity that these men so fear losing — so much so that they would prefer to overturn democracy rather than have that sense of identity and place in society challenged. They not only were prepared to storm and trash the Capitol but were ready to hang Vice President Mike Pence as a traitor for refusing to carry out Trump’s orders to subvert the orderly transition of the presidency to Joe Biden, who won the election by over 7 million votes. …

About

Elle Beau ❇︎

Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store