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It sounds like something Captain Obvious would say, right? But in truth, it’s not that obvious…unless you’re attuned to it. Let me give you an example:

Guilty pleasures. We all have them — those tv shows, movies, songs, and what-have-you that you love, but feel guilty about, because they’re not looked upon favorably. And who collectively decides what is considered a guilty pleasure or not? Our society. Our society arbitrarily decided what was acceptable and what wasn’t.

  • You’re no less cultured for loving Rich Kids of Beverly Hills.
  • Your brain cells are just as in tact watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
  • You still live an amazing life even if you love Justin Bieber as a 40 year-old.
  • You’re no less trashy for loving those romance and erotica novels.

What you like does not define who you are.

So what does this have to do with things that turn us on? Everything.

 

We have fantasies and desires that turn us on like no other. Your desires do not define who you are.

  • Fantasizing about a rape fantasy does not lessen the severity of your past sexual abuse experiences.
  • (Women) Desiring to submit to a man does not make you any less of a feminist.
  • (Men) Desiring to submit to a woman does not make you any less masculine.
  • Being attracted to a much older person does not mean you have mommy/daddy issues.
  • Being turned on by sadism doesn’t mean you’re secretly a closeted domestic abuser.

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I could go on and on. Why? Because I’ve heard from countless men and women how much they feel guilty for fantasizing about the things that turn them on. They feel like they shouldn’t like what they like because it’s “not right”. Who, again, is to say what is right and what isn’t, so long as everyone involved is consenting adults who aren’t breaking laws?

If we allow ourselves to feel guilty for liking something (from “guilty pleasures” to sexual fantasies) because society arbitrarily deemed it guilty worthy, we’re allowing others to define who we are. We’re allowing our power to be taken away from us.

How do you claim this power back?

  • Start journaling. It seems that journaling is my go-to answer for EVERYTHING nowadays, but that’s because it’s so damn powerful. Write about the feelings you have, and see if you can find where the “ick” is coming from.
  • Talk to your closest friends. No, it doesn’t have to be “spill-all-your-dirty-little-fantasies-over-lunch” kind of thing. But, tell them that you’re trying to work through some things that you can’t coherently put into words yet. Things always sound so much worse when we’re the only ones carrying this burden with no one to confide in.
  • Go watch your “guilty pleasures” without fear. It’s easier to take your power back if you start small and work your way up. What better way than to start by unapologetically loving those “guilty pleasures”.
  • Go find your tribe online. Sometimes, the beginning of claiming your power back may rely on the power of the Internet and social media. Really. My very best friends were people on the internet first. The power of genuine friendships is real. Find a community. Find people you want to hang out with that are on the same journey as you. There’s no judgment. Hey, that’s a big reason I created Desires Laid Bare after all.

I dare you to stand in your power. I dare you to be unapologetically you and define who you are as you see fit. That’s the #BELAIDBARE way.

And lastly, if you’ve ever had the desire to explore your kinky side, but don’t know how to start, or worry that you’ll be seen as the weird one out, sign up for Desires Laid Bare’s launch waitlist today and be the first to hear about Desires Laid Bare’s grand opening. Desires Laid Bare is the only private membership experience where you can ask questions and learn about kink in a welcoming and supportive environment.

This article was also written for contribution to Kinky Sex Tips Blogfest ’17!