We were fearless in the 70s. Our sexual adventuring knew no bounds. The process of erotic liberation that began with the sexual revolution of the 60s continued on, in spades, in the decade that followed. It was a time of discarding inhibitions and prohibitions, and of embracing personal freedom, and of self-discovery above all.
It was a time of living out sexual fantasies, via impromptu hook-ups anywhere and everywhere: on sandy beaches, and swimming pools, and hot tubs, and saunas, and on water beds with black satin sheets. We did it in vacation cottages, and at ski resorts, and nudist colonies, and on cruises — and at organized events , and encounter groups, and alternative lifestyle playgrounds, such as swing clubs, and BDSM party houses, not to mention our own private homes.
It was a time when female sexual gratification was viewed as a birthright — and casual sex with perfect strangers was as easy as shaking hands.
If it felt good we did it. If it felt really good, then, by god, we did it again!
Still, by the end of the 70s, having accrued enough sexual experience to eroticize a small, sex-starved country, I’d taken a giant step back from my promiscuous lifestyle. But not because I felt I had an out-of-control addiction requiring a twelve-step program for recovery. Or fear of disease either — believing as I did that God protects both fools and innocent, and I fit somewhere into one or both of those categories.
Instead, I stepped back for two primary reasons: First, I’d learned over time that for me, as a woman, sexual freedom was not necessarily synonymous with sexual satisfaction — and casual sex with strangers, exciting and potentially perfect as they appeared to be, often left more to be desired. Also, by then I’d come to understand and accept my intrepid erotic nature, and perceived how easily I could continue on as I was, until my life evolved, or devolved, depending on viewpoint, into an unending series of casual, sexual encounters.
And in the end, I realized I wanted and needed a greater level of intimacy than that.
I was born in the mid-1940s and brought up in post-World War II America. Women were housewives then; they stayed home with the children. They baked pies, waxed linoleum, watched soap operas, and joined the PTA, while men ran the world and brought home the bacon. As a girl-child, I understood that I was expected to do the same.
With the advent of my entering puberty, my dad began eyeing teenaged boys with mistrust, and my mom, foreshadowing Nancy Reagan, strongly advised me to “just say no” to any touching below the neck. Consequently, I married straight out of high school, in 1962, having swallowed whole the prevailing myth that girls who had sex before marriage were sluts — but not so much if they married the boy they’d had sex with. And as a young wife and mother, I pretty much missed out on the sexual revolution, occupied as I was with diaper changes, shopping lists, and earning my university degrees.
As a stay-at-home mom, I was far removed from gender inequities in the workplace. Still, certain glaring inequities between the sexes did not escape me. For instance, I gave up my last name when I married, while my husband did not. And while my husband experienced orgasm each time we had penetrative sex, I did not — despite coming frustratingly close. Over the years, although I did achieve some splendid orgasms via sufficient oral or manual stimulation — vaginal orgasm, my alleged birthright as a modern woman continued to elude me, becoming a source of friction and disappointment for me and my husband and casting a pall on my sexual life. By the time my marriage collapsed, twelve years later, I was twenty-nine-years-old, believed myself frigid, and set out on a personal journey of erotic self-discovery.
I had quite a good time proving myself wrong.
I’ve been dragging my feet about blogging for months now, since in addition to being a technologically challenged individual, I’ve had concerns about writing enough of interest to sustain continued postings. But with my website up and running, I realize it’s time to get moving because my birthday is in September after which I’ll no longer be sixty-nine, and I’m not sure seventy and still sexual would have the same ring.
So welcome to my blog and why am I starting one anyway? One reason is that as a relatively new erotica writer whose publishing credits are gradually mounting, it seems appropriate to begin publicizing myself and my stories, as well as the awesome editors who chose to include them in their oh-so-hot erotic anthologies.
Speaking of oh-so-hot, I can’t say enough about the latest book I’m in: Sex Still Spoken Here, an Erotic Reading Circle Anthology (ERC), published by the Center of Sex and Culture (CSC), in San Francisco. And kudos to editors: Dr. Carol Queen, ERC co-facilitator and CSC co-founder; Jen Cross, of Writing Ourselves Whole and ERC co-facilitator, and Amy Butcher, author of Paws for Consideration and ERC participant.
Being included in this book has special meaning to me, since I’ve joined this writing community in 2010 as a fledgling writer, and found in it the inspiration, support, and encouragement I needed. I have a hunch there will be more ERC anthologies to follow and hope to have a story in every one. ERC meets on the fourth Wed of each month. The book launch party will be Wed, 9/24, at CSC, 1349 Mission Street. I’ll be there reading from my work and others will too. I hope to see you there.