How do you see yourself as a catalyst for change?
I’m teaching parents how to teach their kids about sexuality from a non-punitive and shame free perspective while being real about our sexually exploitive culture. Empowering parents to be honest about their lived experiences of sexuality, both the good and the bad, will lead to a whole different conversation about sex for the next generation. That’s the mechanism of change I’m operating in; being part of the catalyst that will disrupt the sex-negative cycle.
Who or what was a catalyst for you?
Becoming a parent at a young age, I had my sons at 21 and 22, forced me to make some big changes. They have been my motivation and my inspiration from community college to graduate school. They are 11 and 13 right now and everything I do, I do with them at the forefront of my mind. If you love the work I’m doing, thank my kids.
What do you feel are some of the biggest challenges or concerns facing us in the field of sexuality right now?
The lack of intersectionality. Too many of the same voices and same perspectives saturate the field. We as sexuality educators, researchers. writers and advocates need to reflect the people who are looking for information. People occupy multiple roles and can claim multiple identities while navigating sexuality- the field doesn’t enough understanding or appreciation of that yet.
Why do you feel it is important to bring the topic of your session, How (and Why) to Be a Sex Positive Parent, to CatalystCon East?
People have been seeking out Sex-Positive Parenting resources for years. Parents need support and information. Sexuality professionals need to know how to communicate and offer something useful to parents. Most sex ed information comes from a white, middle class, heterosexual, monogamous, vanilla perspective. That default is alienating on so many levels. Let’s be real with our kids and each other about sexuality, let’s educate and empower parents to discuss consent, boundaries, diversity, desire, safety and exploration with their kids. Also, we’re not going to talk down to parents. We are parents in the midst of parenting. This isn’t a theoretical conversation. We’re sharing our lived experiences and our expertise.
Share one unknown (or little known) fact about yourself.
I used to be medical courier- I took lab specimens and organs between hospitals in ice chests.