Cunning Minx is presenting How to be a Sex Positive Educator (When You Still Love Your Day Job). Check out Minx’s bio here.
How do you see yourself as a catalyst for change?
I actually see myself less as a catalyst for change these days and more as a documentarian of the change that is going on around us. Polyamory is becoming mainstream, which is very exciting! More and more folks are becoming aware of the term, and fewer are associating it with Mormon cults and polygamy. We are seeing more profiles of poly folks on television with less sensationalism. The change is happening, and I am very excited to be poly in 2013!
Who or what was a catalyst for you?
The one who introduced me to polyamory was Graydancer, my first poly love and partner. The one who first invited me to speak at a conference was Alesia, at the poly-friendly sci-fi relax-a-con Conflation. The one who first showed me the extraordinary audience that Poly Weekly had was Steve Eley, founder of the Escape Pod podcast, when we first hosted Escape Pod/Poly Weekly joint meetups at Dragon*Con. The one who first invited me to speak at a sex-positive, non-poly-specific conference was Amber Rhea, founder of the Sex 2.0 conferences. And the ones who’ve kept me from quitting when I started working 50 hours a week for the startup were the fans, who kept writing and asking for advice, for meetups and to share their Happy Poly Moments!
What do you feel are some of the biggest challenges or concerns facing us in the field of sexuality right now?
Even though DOMA has been overturned, gay marriage is still only legal in 13 states. More and more teen girls are reporting sexual violence in their dating lives. Congress is still regulating women’s uteruses and making abortions harder to come by. Poly-identified people still have to hide their relationship structures from friends, families and employers for fear of judgment, persecution or loss of parental rights. We should absolutely take the time to celebrate the wins in our battles for sexual equality–and then gear up for the next fight.
What do you feel are some of the most important/valuable positive changes that have been made in the world of sexuality in the past year?
DOMA being overtuned was a huge win, and two more states legalized gay marriage. Also, the fact that the show Polyamory: Married and Dating was renewed for a new season with new poly groups is a very good sign that polyamory is hitting the mainstream.
Why do you feel it is important to bring the topic of your session, How to be a Sex Positive Educator (When You Still Love Your Day Job), to CatalystCon West?
My topic this year is a bit different from the ones I’ve presented in the past, which tend to focus either on polyamory, podcasting or social media, my biggest strengths. What I proposed this year came from an experience I had last year: in canoodling with some of my favorite sex-positive educators, I realized that I was one of the few presenters that didn’t educate full-time. And what’s more, I have no desire to educate full-time: I love my demanding day job and all its challenges and rewards. But I also feel that educating folks about polyamory and creating an online space where the polyamorous, monogamous and poly-curious can share ideas, questions and experiences is incredibly important. The attendees I spoke with were all starting their own projects and wondering how to juggle being a part-time educator with their full-time jobs. And since the best sessions come from topics that I myself struggle with, it made sense to craft a session designed to help people like me join the activist/educator ranks while still keeping the day jobs that they love.
Share one unknown (or little known) fact about yourself.
I was once kicked off a train in the middle of what was then Yugoslavia in the middle of the night.