Owning who we are sexually isn’t always easy. I was raised with a conservative outlook on sex, which meant I had a lot to work through as I got older and began exploring. There were many aspects to myself that I didn’t like, and I had to learn to accept and love who I am in order to be happy in my own skin. The most difficult things to overcome were embracing that I’m pansexual and a kinky exhibitionist.
On a conscious level, I believed very little of my religious teachings surrounding sexuality. They always seemed to contradict with the message of loving one another. Yet despite that, those teachings still affected me subconsciously when it came to being confident sexually. I knew from early on that I was sexually aroused by people based on who they were on a soul level, as opposed to their gender or physical appearance. But allowing myself to enjoy this side of me was difficult. I kept thinking back to teachings about girls liking girls being wrong, and liking a transgender person was an even worse offense. Because I am female, it was a sin to like anyone that wasn’t male.
This wasn’t my only hang up either. After my husband and I opened our marriage, I entered into a Dominant/submissive relationship with someone. Upon entering that relationship, I found that I loved being put on display and being called a slut. The word slut had always been used to harm me, so when my Dom would call me that with an endearing/affectionate tone, it gave me back my power over the word. Being put on display at a party or private gathering allowed me to explore my exhibitionist side. But I was terrified to admit to my husband that I wanted and liked these things.
While my husband was open to my pansexuality, he wasn’t a fan of exhibitionists. Telling him I was an exhibitionist slut was one of the hardest things I’ve had to share with him. I was so afraid he was going to leave me or see me as an embarrassment. I felt like my stomach was falling out of me when I sat down to tell him the horrible truth about me. I knew I had to be honest, though, so I sat up straight and said as confidently as possible, “Honey, I like being watched and called a slut.”
He looked a little stunned—maybe because I’d blurted it during an episode of Star Trek Voyager—but something interesting happened…he didn’t judge me.
Instead, he paused the show, faced me, and asked why I liked being seen in that manner. I explained that it made me feel sexy and beautiful to be on display. I’m a bigger gal, so to be shown off meant, to me, “I’m sexy, gorgeous, and pleasant to look at because he’s putting me on display and people are watching!” I loved being seen naked and raw, in my truest form, and couldn’t believe people wanted to see me that way.
I also explained that being called a slut gave me my power back over a thing used to hurt me for many years. That if it was coming from a random person on the street, I’d hate it. But coming from my Dom, it was a compliment.
My husband understood.
He gave me his seal of approval and that changed everything.
I felt so light and free knowing that I could be myself without judgment, and my confidence kept growing because of it. I hadn’t realized how my insecurities stemmed from self-shaming. It was like a vicious cycle. The more insecure and self-shaming I was, the more people shamed me. The more I embraced my true self, the more confident I became and the more people responded to me with respect.
Right now, I feel it’s more important than ever to own who I am sexually. Things have shifted with our new administration and many people I know are pulling inward out of fear of being judged or harassed. But denial of who we are in our most sacred of spaces leads to unhappiness. It leads to anxiety and stress. It leads to killing our soul slowly as we allow the world to close us off from the beauty of who we are.
My sexuality is the core of who I am. Owning that part of me was vital to finding joy. I will stay in my place of joy and power by continuing to honor myself. I am a pansexual, poly, kinky, exhibitionist. I am also a good person, and I am proud of who I am.