Pure Romance, 1000 Women—And Me

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I recently returned from Las Vegas, where I spoke at the annual convention of Pure Romance. For two hours I was on stage in front of 1,000 ladies who sell sex toys and related items at Tupperware-type parties in their friends’ living rooms.

The company thinks of their sales force as peer sex educators, which is fantastic. They realize that a lot of their customers want more than a vibrator—they want sympathy, they want permission, they want information. Some of them want the experience of saying the word “sex” out loud. The executives running Pure Romance actually want to make the world a better place, and their approach is to enhance people’s sexual literacy.

So what did I talk about?
* What most people focus on during sex (hint: it’s not pleasure or closeness)
* Reasons people have sex (dozens and dozens of them)
* The most common sexual question (“Am I normal?”)
* The vast similarities between male & female sexuality
* What to tell a woman who says “my husband won’t allow a vibrator in our bedroom”

Underlying the whole morning was the message that sex toys, lube, and communication can change people’s fundamental consciousness about sexuality. And why that’s such a good thing—for them, their partners, and the planet.

I guess this talk is the flip side of my speech about America’s War On Sex. I’m happy to say that the audience loved the talk, and I loved the audience. Afterwards, women from Kentucky and Ohio, Utah, Oklahoma, and a dozen other states lined up just to shake my hand, hug me, thank me.

And I wondered, for the millionth time: how could any politician say sex toys are bad for America? How could any priest or minister say sex toys offend God? How could any city council, zoning board, or “morality” group say sex toys “don’t belong” in their town?

A twenty-buck gadget that can make women climax, a little bottle of stuff that makes body parts more slippery, fur handcuffs or naughty dice or edible panties—how can any adult pretend that their opposition to these things is anything more than fear, fear, or fear?

Blaming God or “our community” or “the children” is cowardice (and it gives God a bad name, besides). Even though they make my life miserable, I would shake the hand of any person who admitted “I’m against sex toys or erotica because they make me feel frightened, inadequate, lonely, or perverted.”

Telling the truth is always the first step toward freedom.

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