The Anti-Slut Shaming Podcast

As I talked about in Monday’s post, shame has been on my mind a whole lot lately, particularly, the shame that we as women allow ourselves to feel in relation to defying gender, societal or religious norms. I think sometimes we hold ourselves to an unrealistic and unfair standard and when we fail to meet it, we let shame creep in and diminish our self-worth.

GWF

A few months ago, I discovered the Guys We Fucked podcast and have been binge-listening to past episodes. The podcast is hosted by Corrine Fisher and Krystyna Hutchinson, two New York based comedians who decided to start an “Anti-Slut Shaming” podcast and interview past guys they had fucked. Not only do they interview guys they have fucked, they invite guests on with interesting, honest stories to tell. Corrine and Krystyna are attempting to remove the shame from “sexual exploration” (the term they use to replace “sluttiness”) and speak aloud things so many women are thinking.

Through the honest sharing of topics that range from; one night stands, rape fantasies, masturbation, open relationships, stripping, sex addiction, femesculation (a brilliant term Krystyna invented meaning feeling less like a woman), molestation, depression, suicide, transgenderism, polyamory, etc., the ladies create an open, safe forum to explore, without shame or embarrassment, experiences that many of us may be curious about, but feel ashamed or wrong for contemplating.

Some of my favorite episodes have been incredibly informative and insightful. One of the first I heard was “He Was 13 and You Were 5?” The male guest that day had been molested as a child, and was reflecting about how this affected his adolescent and adult relationships. I found his insight pretty fascinating. I think this is something that unfortunately, happens way too often, but is not often explored and talked about because of shame.

Another episode that I found informative was “Too Late for Plan B, Too Early for an Abortion?” The guest on this episode had an abortion using the abortion pill and described, in detail, her experience. Again, this is not something that is generally talked about for fear of shame. I thought it was incredibly brave of the guest to talk about her experience and could be helpful to anyone considering this as an option.

Episodes that I am looking forward to listening to are entitled: “How Did Being A Pimp Affect You Emotionally?” “Tim Curry Hit on Your Dad?” and “Did Your Wife Know You Were Gay?”

Corrine and Krystyna do inject humor and a lightness that is needed at times, but they also have created a platform for honest, open and intelligent rhetoric on a broad range of topics. They encourage truthful, empowering conversations and normalize women as sexual beings with varied preferences.

If this sounds interesting to you, check them out on SoundCloud or iTunes. I would love to know your thoughts on their podcast!

The Great Spin Out-Part 2 of 2

February 28th marks the one year anniversary of when my car spun out in the Cajon Pass and kicked off a spiritual awakening. Ed & I have named the event The Great Spin Out, because our flare for the dramatic dictates that we make a huuuuuge deal out of every event.

As I talked about in Part 1 of this series, on this morning I was in a spiritual place of beginning to be open to knowing there was more out there. I was still unsure of what that was or what it looked like, but I had finally come to the place of acknowledging that I did have faith in something.

On this particular morning, I left to work early because I knew the weather would cause me to drive much slower than normal. It was uncharacteristically pouring. Hard. This is abnormal for Southern California and our drivers are not known for their ability to navigate this type of weather.

The rain was pounding outside, but I drove slow and tried to stay calm. I kept my hands at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel and tried to stay present.

The road was getting more slippery and flooded. I still felt calm and alert and I stayed in the slow lane. I went about my normal morning routine of praying and setting my intention for the day.

For whatever reason, that morning SURRENDER was on my mind. I begin telling God that I was finally ready to surrender to it. I begin talking through my ideas of my SURRENDER, my resistance to it and making the decision that I did in fact have faith and would SURRENDER to my doubt, logic and reasoning.

The minute I said, “I SURRENDER” I hit a huge puddle of water and I lost control of my car. I begin to spin and spun off the road, down a hill and into an embankment, which is what finally stopped my car.

The amount of time I spent spinning must have been short, but it felt a long moment in time. I remember first feeling panicked, then I felt calm. I had this moment where I was sure I was going to die and I felt OK with that.

spin out 1 spin out 2

After I stopped spinning, my dramatics picked up. I panicked for a moment and cried. Then my logic kicked in, I calmed down, called my husband and then called Triple AAA to tow my car home.

Once I finally got home, put on dry clothes (I was soaked from standing out in the rain and trying to get my car out) and turned on The Golden Girls for comfort, I stopped to think about the significance of what happened.

My first thought was, what this a good or bad sign? Did this mean God heard me out or did it mean I was being a complete fool? Did it mean anything other than poor weather conditions? Why was I so at peace with dying? Was God testing my commitment to SURRENDER? Was my faith being put to the test?

Naturally, I started texting Ed to process this all the way through. I also talked extensively through it all with my husband and a few strangers in bars, because that seems like a natural place to explore these topics.

Although I do not have any for sure answers to some of these questions, I do think I have come to a personal understanding of the meaning of this event.

To me, it was about SURRENDER. Surrendering to God and developing faith. Surrendering to death and being at peace with the inevitable. Surrendering to my heart and acknowledging that my logical brain does not know everything.

A pose of surrender

A pose of surrender

Once I finally came to that place of surrender, I have been more open to a spiritual journey. This past year has been more about me exploring that faith. Continuing to question, but mostly, beginning to believe. I have been so much more at peace and I feel more open to exploring all facets of spirituality and letting God speak to my heart.

Have you ever had a spiritual turning point?

 

 

Outside Forces that Shape A Spiritual Life: Part 3

Even in my really bad, drugged-out days, I didn’t go away. I still toured, still did interviews. I never gave up the fight. That’s why I’m who I am today, because I didn’t leave. And I think I made the right choice. Stevie Nicks

When we are born, there are personality traits already instilled deep within us.  Those personality quirks shape our life.

Then there are those outside forces: people, places and events that cause us to rethink our direction.

Handling all the above it what makes life – life.

Ed

magic

I look at where I am now and what is shaping my spiritual life and if I had to sum it up in one word it would be: everything.

I am finding God, inspiration, other hearts, spirituality and love everywhere I look. I see it in nature, connections with others, kindness, yoga, wisdom, choices, people, music, passion and animals.

When I opened my heart up to follow a spiritual path, I found roads everywhere.

Thank-you for continuing to follow along with us as we explore these paths and connecting with our hearts as we discover what God has in store for us all.

In love & sisterhood,

~Ang

 

Outside Forces That Shape A Spiritual Life: Part 2

“When you’re young, you don’t really know quite what you’re aiming at. You’re very impulsive and acting on impulse, which is very important and valuable. But you’re kind of swimming in a blind sea. When you get older, you have more of a sense of direction.”- Sinead O’Conner

My sense of direction in life started to clear up once I accepted my homosexuality and allowing the outside forces in, as a result I can see the world around me a lot clearer.  I truly believe that’s the direction I needed to go, in order to see myself as human.  For much of my life gay meant that I was not human but an animal rutting with other same sex animals.  How could I fully realize myself  until I stepped into who I am?

When I landed on Planet Gay, the previous outside forces I was trained to believe in said that I would inherit eternal hell fire if I were ever to set foot on this new terrain. That was a bunch of crap.  What I found instead was another version of high school; little clicks of gay men trying to fit into sub groups for acceptance:

Jocks

Jocks

artsy types

artsy types

Corporate types

Corporate types

...and others who refuse to see the truth.

…and others who refuse to see the truth.

As a long time actor in the straight community before I came out, these types are very similar in the straight community as well. Once I accepted this part of myself, I was then able to start expressing the feminine side of me that has always existed but lay dormant due to shame and guilt for many years. How could I deny the Lord his creation – myself – the freedom to express what he created? My shame and guilt around who I was soon became a disservice to the one true creator of all things.

~Ed

My spiritual direction became much more cloudy as I became an adult. I questioned so much of what I was being taught in church and I was sick of the hypocrisy, judgement and hearing other people speak for God, that I knew I was done with church. I thought at the time that it also meant I was done with God.

It took a lot of courage to make that decision. I had so much fear built up over the years. I realized for many years, my commitment to church was based on fear; I kept going because of fear of being different, fear of being wrong, fear of going to hell, and on and on…

I had to finally be OK with not knowing the answers to all the questions. It took me SO LONG to break through that fear and be OK with the unknown. I had to make peace with all the questions and let them be.

For awhile, I thought I had no beliefs. I thought my spiritual journey was completely over and there was nothing to have faith in. I think there was a point where I was even content with that mind set, but after some growing up, I questioned my lack of direction and realized I did have faith in something.

Knowing that there was something set me up to take on a new spiritual path, which led me to my journey now. This journey has been free of fear, anxiety, force, judgement and shame. It has been filled with curiosity, intellect, questioning, discussion, love and acceptance.

My spiritual journey finally feels like it has some of the direction I have been seeking for my whole life.

In love and sisterhood,

~Ang

Outside Forces That Shape A Spiritual Life: Part 1

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” – Confucius

When I think of life and my place among the millions of other life forms tossing, spinning and turning around me, I often see myself as a solar system.  In it, I’m the sun and the planets orbiting around me are life’s little surprises that are waiting to shape my future destiny.  Each one is out there just spinning around waiting for the right moment in life’s journey to make itself known.  So far, the planets I’ve explored have brought me to where I am today.

When I touched base with the first planet within my orbit I encountered planet Gay; when I allowed my rays to shine upon it, I had to deal with it; figure it out and get over it.  As dark and menacing as it looked from afar, I found the unknown terrain to be harmless fun.

Once Planet Gay became overpopulated and I had explored every corner there was to explore, it was time to move on.  The second planet I encountered was the giant gas planet of organized religion.  At the surface, it was filled with dangerous mind altering gases but at its core lie the solid truth.  I moved on from there after a long drawn out stay.

Recently after spending time seeking I found another planet in my solar system that for many years appeared to inhabit a loving atmosphere.  Unfortunately there was a volcanic explosion that clouded the sky with soot and ash and the inhabitants are currently trying to find their way out of it.

As I move forward from planet to planet, leaving behind parts of myself and taking with me what I’ve learned, I’m finding that the concept of God and the spiritual life are changing right along with it.  It’s starting to resemble a Lisa Frank type of world.

4VGrC 6343053770_3d5eb9f9af_b

~Ed

As I look back, I realize that most of my spiritual life has been dictated by outside forces. It has probably been only in the last year that I have allowed my spirituality to be explored internally, by the soul, God and cosmos that compose my genetic make-up and sentinent being.

My spiritual journey started off being dictated by man. I listened to what man said about who God was and blindly trusted the way that God was explained to me. I did not question whether or not that was right or wrong, I openly accepted that what my pastors, my family and community leaders said about God was accurate.

As I grew older, I did have my questions and doubts, but I was too scared to voice them, I was afraid my faith would be called into question and I would not appear to be a “true” Christian.

Things shifted and changed as I got closer to adulthood, but for much of my childhood and adolescence, I followed around wherever I was led by man.

Unicorns Lisa Frank I loved all things Lisa Frank, while I was growing up and wished I could live in a world where unicorns had rainbow tails. I think that trusting naivete gives an accurate comparison of my early relationship with spirituality.

In love & sisterhood,

~Ang