Jan 262010
 

Q. My boyfriend wants to tie me up and blindfold me but isn’t that kinky? ~Jen B.

A. Sure some consider this to be kinky, but what’s wrong with kinky?  My theory is if you enjoy it and no one is being forced into anything they don’t want to do, then go for it.  There are a lot of things that people consider kinky until they try them and realize it was more the fear of the unknown.  If you do some research, you’ll learn that being tied up and blindfolded by your partner is mild on the BDSM continuum.  The most important factor is that you and your partner have developed a level of trust where you feel comfortable giving up some control.  Without trust, you are not likely to have a pleasurable experience.  If my partner wouldn’t let me do the same thing to him, I would give some hesitation before saying yes.

So with that said, there are fantastic reasons to play with restraints and blindfolds.  First off, when you are restricted from using your body, all focus becomes about your pleasure in the moment.  It puts you in a position to simply receive whatever your partner offers.  This can be playful tickling with a feather, a sensual massage, a naughty little spanking, or oral pleasure from head to toe.  When one gives up control and can relax into the experience, pleasure becomes more of a full body experience.

Using a blindfold in lovemaking play involves a high level of  trust.  By removing the sense of sight, the sensitivity of your other senses, smell, taste, touch, and hearing, will increase and become more acute.  When you aren’t able to see what will happen next, your anticipation increases and as you begin to use those other senses, your sensitivity and the pleasure you receive becomes amplified.  Touch especially will become much more errogenous.  How fun is that!  Another benefit with any type of play where you let go of control is it can strengthen your relationship and deepen both intimacy and trust between you and  your partner.  What an amazing gift to give yourself.

Before you begin, create a safe word with your partner that either of you can say to stop the play activity.  The word means everyone has to stop what they are doing.  This is a general rule with BDSM activities because sometimes in role playing and fantasy, participants may be acting out, resisting a partner.  The fantasy acting can include words like NO and Stop, which is why it is important to make the safe word something out of the ordinary and non-sexual.  Words like blueberry, car, or green are easy safe words.  They may sound silly now, but will be very clear in the moment if anyone is feeling uncomfortable about anything and wants to stop.

What do you use to tie each other up?  Use your imagination. Do you have any nylons or stockings? Does he have any business ties? Pick up yourself  some fun furry cuffs and satin blindfolds. Consider getting yourself some playful accessories and attire to make your partner squirm and squeal with delight.  In our online shop, you will find tickling feathers, delicious smelling massage products and even tasty body toppings to wet your appetite.

Finally, start slow.  Take it in steps.  Start with tying only one hand and do so loosly where you can get out if you want to.  From there, decide if you want to be more restricted with tighter ties or try other body parts tied-up.  You can negotiate and discuss boundaries and fantasies, and once you trust that your partner won’t do anything you aren’t up for, the  possibilities are unlimited!

Shop at The Goddess Boutique for all your frisky fun needs. 

xoxo

Angela, The Goddess Next Door

Aug 102009
 

Have you considered reentering the dating scene but the thought brings up all sorts of concerns? Here I address some of the more common questions I get from my coaching clients…

Q. What advice do you give newly single people about first dates (i.e., where to go, what to do, how much to say about previous relationships, how much personal information to share, etc.)?

A. Going somewhere public where you can easily leave is best for a first date.

If you know rather quickly you want to end the date you can easily make a transition out and you aren’t stuck for the whole meal. Going out for coffee or tea is a great way to get a sense of the other person. It will give you an idea whether you want to spend any more time with them. At that point, you can decide to continue or make another date for lunch or dinner.

Doing something fun that gets the two of you interacting is a great way to get to know each other. When you participate in activities, it takes the pressure off each of you. It also gives you the opportunity to see how they react to various situations as they arise. Initially avoid sharing your life history. In due time, you will have the opportunity to share if there is potential and you proceed past the first date. When you over share you may overwhelm your date and scare them away.

Q. How do I know when I have found someone to hold onto?

A. Find someone you connect with mentally, emotionally and physically, making sure you share similar beliefs and aspirations in life. To have a strong, long term committed relationship you need a strong foundation in values. If you don’t have similar beliefs and aspirations and don’t share similar values, you won’t be able to maintain a great relationship for long. Eventually one of you will feel dissatisfied and will want to move on.

Finally, make sure it’s someone with whom you have a lot of fun. Relationships should be easy, so don’t settle for less or try to make something out of mediocre.

Q. How soon is too soon to get back into a serious relationship?

A. That really depends on you. Two questions to ask yourself and consider are:

  1. Have you processed your emotional baggage with your ex or are you still holding anger and resentments toward them?
  2. Are you clear with who you are as an individual knowing what you want from your life and from a partner?

If not, take some time to address these issues first. If you haven’t processed the past emotional baggage and you are not clear on your wants and needs; unless you want to attract a similar person or relationship into your life it’s probably not time to get into new one.

Q. When is the right time to move a relationship into the bedroom?

A. My theory is that its best to become friends first. If you can’t manage to be friends, you have no business trying to build a relationship with this person.

Sex clouds judgment and accelerates the relationship; emotions get more intense whether we want them to or not.

During sexual activity a hormone is released in women called Oxytocin. Oxytocin is a hormone that develops bonding feelings to a partner. There are also many changes that occur in the brain chemistry. Why We Love is an excellent book that explains in great detail what goes on during various stages of romance and love. It’s very fascinating how the various hormones and neurotransmitters work so you will see a future posts about them. Until then…here’s to many fun dates ahead!

xoxo

Angela, The Goddess Next Door

Aug 082009
 

Still hooking up with your ex? Have you been wondering if you should break it off or try to make it work again? I’ll just keep this short and sweet!

I highly advise against hooking back up with your ex. You obviously made the decision at one point to end the relationship and chances are absolutely nothing has changed. The only thing you will find with an ex is drama.  It’s important to be clear about your boundaries with your previous partners, especially sexually. If you aren’t ready to let go of them, you can sure bet you aren’t ready to pursue another relationship. This probably isn’t what you want to hear if you’re reading this. That’s okay because you ultimately have free will and choice to do as you wish. Just think long and hard before you decide to jump back in. Are you ready to go through an emotional roller coaster? If you are, it should be one wild ride!

xoxo

Angela, The Goddess Next Door

May 262009
 

Q:  My friend is getting married and I am in charge of throwing her Bachelorette party. I don’t want to throw her the usual tacky party and I wonder if you have any tips on planning an elegant party?

A: I believe there is a goddess in every woman that should be celebrated – especially during the turning points of her life. When your dear friend is about to be wed, consider a Bachelorette celebration that honors her last moments of single life and empowers her as she enters her marriage. Create a party that will refresh her and help her reconnect with her strength and grace. After months of managing wedding arrangements, extended friends and family, and her own emotions as she gets closer to her actual wedding day, the Bachelorette will be stressed and exhausted. As weddings in our culture have become more and more elaborate, the pressure on the Bride-to-Be has become enormous – and despite all this she is expected to arrive at the aisle looking stunning and in the appropriate frame of mind to take a sacred vow. That’s a lot to ask of anyone, don’t you think?

So, when it is time to plan her Bachelorette Party, I suggest something different – something as meaningful as it is fun. Gather her most beloved womenfolk and celebrate her from the heart in the way only women can. Nurture, bless and rejuvenate her with your shared love and laughter. Open your hearts and surround her with restorative joy. Connect with her in a mindful, gracious way. Be the goddesses that you are!

Be inspired by her. What is meaningful to the Bachelorette? What does she do to reconnect to her calm, centered sense of self? Does she draw strength from a particular spiritual tradition? Is there a place she visits to refresh her soul? Does she have creative outlets for self-expression? If you don’t know, make it a point to get to know her better during the months leading up to the wedding. Talk to other women who know her well. Spend time with the Bachelorette and initiate conversations about what is important to her. If she’s pressed for time – and she probably will be – offer to accompany her on errands or help with some of the preparations and visit while you work together. She’ll be glad for the extra set of hands and you’ll have a chance to learn more about her.

Be inspiring to her. Find a private space where the Bachelorette and her guests can talk freely and feel secure enough to be openhearted with each other. Decorate it so the Bachelorette knows, from the moment she walks in the door, that this is a special place, created just for her, and set apart from the frenzy she’s experienced over the last several months. Try using rich, dramatic colors and luxurious fabrics in you décor. Add some deep-hued flowers and spicy-scented candles to create an elegent setting. For ideas, check out A. Bronwyn Llewellen’s book Goddess at Home: Interiors Inspired by Aphrodite, Artemis, Athena, Demeter, Hera, Hestia, and Persephone.

Act on your inspiration. Plan activities and rites of passage that will help you connect with, pamper and honor the Bachelorette. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.

  • Make or purchase a beautiful box. Have all the guests write a letter to the Bachelorette and bring it to the party. If they need some ideas about what to write, suggest they:
    • Remember special times in their friendship with the Bachelorette;
    • Tell the Bachelorette what they admire most about her;
    • Create a poem or blessing especially for her; or
    • Share bits of wisdom they’ve learned from their own marriage.

    Allow time for guests to read their letters aloud to the Guest-of-Honor if they feel comfortable doing so. Place all the letters inside the decorative box and gift them to the Bachelorette as a keepsake.

  • Share traditional wedding rituals from her cultural heritage. Or, start your own tradition that you can repeat as each woman in the group gets married.
  • If your Bachelorette likes to cook, get all the women in the kitchen together and prepare a special meal for yourselves. It’s amazing how women will bond when they are cooking together.
  • Another similar idea for artistic Bachelorettes is to create art together. Try doing ceramics, collage, or jewelry making.
  • Sit around the fire together. Fire has an almost magical ability to soothe away stress and start people telling stories. Remember the last time you sat around the hearth or outdoor fire pit with good friends? Remember how relaxing it was and how one joke or story led to another?
  • Give each other foot massages or pedicures.
  • Bring your pajamas and make it a slumber party. Pillow fights are optional, but sure to get everybody laughing.
  • Commit to each other. One aspect of getting married that can be stressful for everyone concerned is the fear that friendships will be neglected and fade away. Talk to each other openly. Think about what you are willing to do to nurture your friendships with each other and commit to doing it.
  • Go outside and dance by the light of the moon.

Gifts fit for a goddess. Take plenty of time to shop for a gift, don’t rush it. Find something unique that will help the Bachelorette stay focused on herself. She’s entering into a partnership and that is time when it is easy for a person to lose themselves in their quest to connect with their new spouse. Choose something that will remind her of, and help her stay connected to, her true self. It will be better for her and better for her relationship.

A friend of mine told me about an occasion she celebrated with two of her closest girlfriends. Each woman was asked to bring charms that in some way reflected the spirit of her other two friends. As they sat together that night, they brought out each charm and shared why they chose it for their friend. At the end of the night, each woman went home with a bracelet full of reminders about who they are and how much they are loved by their best friends. These three women are open-hearted, generous spirits. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind if you borrowed their idea to fête your dear Bachelorette.

Nectar of the goddess. Serve fine wines or a nice champagne, but make sure the activities aren’t focused around drinking. Your focus should be on the Bride-to-Be and this change in her life. The hostess should set the tone about what is important and should always have the Bachelorette’s best interest in mind. The hostess should be mindful about how much alcohol is served throughout the evening and be proactive if she sees someone is having too much to drink. Intervene before someone embarrasses herself and keep any drama far away from the Bachelorette.

Take care of each other. Shower each other with love by remembering a few important basics:

  • Hold the Bachelorette Party a few days before the wedding. I advise against having the party the night before the wedding because the Bride-to-Be needs to look and feel her best on her wedding day. That is impossible if she was up late the night before.
  • Don’t do anything that would humiliate the Bachelorette. It’s important to keep her comfort level in mind when you plan activities. This is a celebration, not a hazing. If she is more innocent or conservative, don’t go overboard with sexual games and innuendos.
  • Keep each other’s secrets. When women get together to laugh and bond, they often share personal information – or make jokes they wouldn’t dream of repeating in mixed company. Things will likely be said during the party that don’t need to be passed along to others. Be a trustworthy friend to everyone in the room.

Many blessings. One of the most important assets women have is the love and support of other women. Think of the popularity of books such as the Ya-Ya Sisterhood and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Women crave a connection with other women that they can carry with them through all the changes of their life. If you don’t have deep, meaningful bonds with your dearest friends right now, use the Bachelorette Party to start forging them in her honor. If you do, acknowledge those bonds, celebrate them and strengthen them. You’ll all be stronger, wiser, and more gracious when the sun comes up in the morning.

xoxo

Angela, The Goddess Next Door