Podcast Season 3 Episode 18
Host: Karen Yates Running Time: 34:53 min
Can you get beyond religious guilt in your sex life? Can you be a religious person and also kinky, queer, polyamorous?
This deep conversation explores themes of faith, the damage restrictive religions can do to our erotic spirit, and how to work toward getting free.
Wild & Sublime Podcast Transcript
#S3E18 | Religion and Sex Guilt
Jera Brown: The flesh is holy and beautiful. It is beautiful across religious traditions. It is sacred. It is not separate from our spirit. And because of that, the desires of the spirit are just as holy and sacred. And following these things, the desires of your heart, the guilt of not following those things does an injustice to the Creator that created them.
Karen Yates: Welcome to Wild & Sublime, a sexy spin on infotainment®, no matter your preferences, orientation, or relationship style, based on the popular live Chicago show. I chat about sex and relationships with citizens from the world of sex positivity. You'll hear meaningful conversations, dialogues that go deeper, and information that can help you become more free in your sexual expression. I'm sex educator and intimacy coach Karen Yates. This week, we discuss evangelical Christianity, purity culture, Catholicism, and sex guilt. Keep listening.
Hey, folks, as you probably know, Wild & Sublime is on patreon.com, for those wonderful listeners who want to support the show on a monthly basis. One of the perks of membership is a monthly Q&A with knowledgeable, sex positive folks, many of them recurring guests from the show. This Patreon conversation today, from earlier this year, is remarkable in that it came together very quickly, and I unwittingly asked folks who have a deep knowledge of the subject. And the subject is sex guilt, by way of religion, a really powerful dialogue that will give you much to muse upon. We unpack guilt and its uses, how to empower yourself sexually by using the turn-ons actually built into Christianity, and also how to move out of oppressive religious cultures. You'll be hearing from sex writer and fetish provider Jera Brown, who also has the podcast Left-Handed Journeys, about spirituality and sex. You'll also hear from surrogate partner and intimacy coach, Brandon Hunter-Haydon. Enjoy.
I decided to go with a question that didn't get answered at our February show. And it was such a juicy question, I thought, this is something that deserves a little bit deeper treatment. So, the question from the audience member in February was, "How do you undo sex guilt? For Catholics, masturbating to fantasies of control and domination?" So, there are so many levels to this question. And I wanted to start out by asking the question of both of you: What does religion serve up that results in sexual guilt? What are some of the — I mean, I know it's just like, basically, let's talk for five hours. But what are the aspects? What's religion teaching that usually ends up with people having sexual guilt? And why don't we start with whoever would like to jump in?
Jera Brown: Okay, I'm not sure exactly where to start, so I'm going to start in the middle, meaning I'm going to start in the middle of my journey, because it's been pretty recent. When I say my journey, I should say, I'm not Catholic. But I grew up in a conservative Christian environment, in the midst of purity culture, which is an evangelical phenomenon that happened in the middle of the '90s and the early 2000s, where the conservative Christian right in America put this huge focus on virginity until marriage and abstinence-only sex education, that affected any of us who went through the public school system. And I personally think that there's a lot more similarities than differences between Protestant Christianity in this country and those who grew up in the Catholic Church.
So yeah, I've been exploring this stuff my whole life. And have had to deal with sex shame and sex guilt. But it wasn't until recently that I learned about religious trauma syndrome. And religious trauma syndrome was a phrase that a clinician named Marlene Winell came up with in 2011. So it's pretty recent. And it's a symptom that's similar to PTSD and C-PTSD, for folks that grow up in a conservative or strict religious environment. And part of what can happen with this religious trauma syndrome are things like, it happens when independent thinking gets condemned. And there's this strong hierarchy of what's acceptable and what's not acceptable, what's good and what's bad. And part of how that comes out is a really unhealthy way of looking at relationships. It can be a fear of sexuality in general. It can be a fear of intimacy within relationships; it can be a ton of things.
And so, I bring it up because labeling something like that has helped me at least be able to see its lingering impact on my life. And it's been hugely influential and finding other resources. So that's not a complete answer. But I feel like I wanted to start with that foundation. What we're dealing with when we're dealing with an authoritarian religion is we're dealing with systemic trauma that comes from not being able to think for ourselves. So that's a starting point.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: I hadn't heard of that.
Karen Yates: Yeah, that's pretty—
Jera Brown: You haven’t heard of that?
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: No!
Jera Brown: Oh, yeah. Well, I think I mean, it's pretty recent. So yeah,
Karen Yates: That totally makes sense. To kind of liken it to PTSD makes a lot of sense to me.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: It makes a lot of sense to me too. I think the way it makes sense to me, in terms of it being a systemic form of oppression makes a lot of sense. And also, the similarities it shares with the cycle of abuse and abusive relationships at times, because there are attributes of gaslighting, of isolation, like forced isolation, both of psychological isolation, social isolation, controlling one's exposure to other elements, people, thoughts, beliefs. Minimizing possibility, in a lot of regards. And the payoff is the promise of a reward. And that reward is twofold. One is the security and belonging of a community. And that community is shaped by its exclusivity, by its purity, in a world that is inherently not. And so this membership in that exclusive pure culture has an appeal. And then also the reward, the postmortem reward, that's that's offered up too. That even after all of this, you get everlasting life, or however it's framed in the denomination.
I have an interesting background, because I was baptized Catholic, but then I was raised Midwestern Lutheran, and then I converted to hardcore evangelical Christianity in my early teens, which is during the time that Jera was talking about. It was in the mid to late '90s. And for a whole host of reasons, right, belonging being a huge part of that. And sex guilt was, you know, it was the plot du jour, as it were. And it's also a big part of why I left, in many regards. For me, it was about contending with the reality that so much of what was being villainized, or literally demonized, is part of the natural variation and splendor of the world, and people being of the world. But especially in my group, the whole idea was to separate ourselves from the world, to see ourselves as inherently not of the world, or to lean in the direction of not being worldly, because the world was already corrupted. It was in the hands of nefarious forces, right? So therefore, things of the world, even natural manifestations of things, were seen as sullying the agenda of the celestial figure of God.
But to me, the math didn't quite check out, because this is also the world that was supposedly created by this omnipotent, omniscient being, who's also supposed to be the supreme figure of power and love, but also is incredibly wrathful and capricious. And so, it simply became a matter of it not checking out, and then also actually talking to real human beings — especially queer folks — who are actually meeting, who it turns out, were all people. I think, realizing that the naturalness of it, and the ease of it being a natural phenomenon, even in a world that was full of real threats towards those differences, just — it did not compute. And for me, it created a whole host of challenges in my own process of leaving, which is really a part of my own clearing. But the guilt, the guilt stays for a while, even if there is a psychic separation with the party or with the group, even if there's a physical separation, with the group, that guilt can linger.
And so, I like to get curious about, what does the guilt give us? What is it offering us? What's its purpose? Is it a means of holding on to something? Is it something that's so familiar that we still clutch a part of it, tuck a part of it away in ourselves, because... You know, in a world with a lot of uncertainty, and in a world that can be hard to be in, having our guilt means that we are at least somehow aligned with something that is greater than us, that knows what's going on. That we are beholden to. Maybe like some sort of inflated parental figure who's going to either rescue us or correct our course, or in the end, be there — that we'll have a second chance with, we'll have a chance to return to, even if we lose our way. Those are just meanderings around it, but I like to really curiously invite the exploration of, what is the purpose of the guilt? What's its function in your life? And not to even position it as a bad thing. But let's get with it. What does it feel like in the body? Does it have sub-parts?
Karen Yates: Jera, you were nodding when Brandon was talking about, the guilt takes a while to degas from the system. And what are your experiences with leaving the culture, or leaving this idea of purity culture, or getting free of it? Are you free of it?
Jera Brown: I do feel free of it. I have two answers to this. One is that I recently interviewed somebody about shame for my own podcast. And I told him, like, I don't have sexual shame anymore, about anything, which I think is pretty true. But then I stayed up at night thinking about what shame is. And I realized that even though that's true, that shame has been a primary motivator of my life — and it turned into the foundation of the memoir that I'm writing now, that is really a history of shame, and how it morphs and changes. And I don't always know what is shame versus what is guilt. I think sometimes it's obvious, and sometimes it's not.
But my own journey out of shame around being a sexual person happened fairly quickly. Like, I was very ashamed; for a number of years, like, believed that I was completely tainted, was not ever going to be wanted, because I was sinful, and all of these things. And I heard a minister talk, a Quaker minister in Indiana named Philip Gulley, who wrote a book called "If Grace Is True," and then followed it up with a book called "If God Is Love." And really breaks down like, these paradoxes around what we believe that God should be, and what the Church teaches.
I read it when I was 26, and realized that I did not believe in a God that cared about sin. As much as I believed in a God that cared about pursuing truth. And that year, I came out as queer. I like, took on a bunch of friends with benefits, who introduced me to polyamory, who introduced me to kink, and I just went fucking crazy. But like, I was free. Like, in those communities, I found this alternative sexual ethics, and relationship ethics, that seemed to match my life, or my faith. I will say that it was a very tumultuous year. I made a lot of mistakes. I had affairs with married men. I felt like my entire ethical framework collapsed. And then I was able to rebuild it fairly quickly, thanks to these alternative communities.
So for me, I think part of the answer of moving on was finding other communities that cared a lot about sexual ethics, and being true to each other, and things like that, even if they're not perfect. But the other thing I was thinking about when Brandon was talking about this — how does guilt serve you? Or what is it doing in your life? I was thinking about how hard it can be to tell where the authentic us ends and where our conditioning begins. And so, in thinking about the clearance question around, like, these desires that you might have, you might carry around domination. And these things become authentic parts of who we are. And I think we can have guilt around them, because we've been taught to have guilt around them. But we can also start to have guilt around them because they're remnants of something that was once unhealthy for us, too. A lot of people with fetishes or kinks have them because of trauma, because of discomfort in childhood, and all these things. And yet the kink or the fetish itself is not necessarily unhealthy. It's a way of working with and playing with something that was difficult. So I think there's a lot there, too. Like, what do you want to be your authentic self? What are you okay with embracing and playing with? And they're not easy questions to answer.
Karen Yates: I appreciate everything that's getting unpacked in this conversation tonight. And I really love that you brought up community as the antidote to... community. [laughs] I mean, that's powerful. A lot of times when we go through momentous change, if we're interested in going through momentous change, community can be extremely important. You know, it's very hard to, I think, change successfully in a vacuum. We need so much support — be it therapeutic support, but for people who don't go to therapy there are communities that can hold us while we are in the change process. And to be surrounded by people with this aim likes, dislikes, peccadillos — that's a remarkable thing.
Can you talk, Jera — and Brandon, if you would like — a little bit about, say, fetish or kink? Because I have no clue, obviously, if the person who wrote this, who has fantasies of control and domination actually even has a desire or to move into the kink realm. But can either of you talk a little bit about using kink as a way to transmute some of the heaviness of the shame?
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Yeah, I've got a couple of things. And one thing that I want to mention, that I think leads into this, potentially, is that the one function of the guilt can actually be looking at what values is that guilt supposed to be pointing to? Right? Do we feel guilty because we're not living into some values that we supposedly have? Or that we ought to be? Which begs the question of, what are your values? And I do this when I work with folks too, because I talk about sexual values. Like, what are your actual coherent sexual values, and values around being a sexually active or a sexual being? What's important to you? How do you want to be, what kind of a sexual person do you want to be? Right? What are these waypoints for your action that you can name? That's powerful to do that. And so, coming from religion, a lot of that is named for us, right? There's scripts for it. That's an outline, it's pre-loaded. And so the guilt can be a reaction to values that were indoctrinated or prescribed, that you're not living up to. But those values might not also belong to you. They might not actually be your true values. Guilt can also be because you do have real values that are not being served by the values that have been superimposed upon you.
So I think the other thing with transmuting the guilt in terms of kink, and especially with these, like, domination and control, some of the most common fantasies, statistically, across the board, especially in the US — domination, fantasies, power dynamics: super common. And one of the questions that I would ask this person is, how much of this is a fantasy and how much of it is a desire? Because imagining something, enjoying the mental imagery of it, the psychic imagery of it — for masturbation or just for your own pleasure, inside of your own mind — that's different also than having an active desire, something you want to act on, right? With another person. So discerning that is already a big step. Fantasies are not the same thing as desires. But transmuting that into a situation and a dynamic — where people are consenting, they're negotiating and consenting to a scenario in which those qualities, the very qualities that are surrounded by the stickiness of guilt, or whatever kind of spiritual or psychic ick is making it kind of icksome for you — what if those qualities, or those behaviors, those parts or aspects of your presence are actually welcome? And actually gave someone else as well as yourself pleasure, catharsis, release, affirmation? What if that were true? What if it were true that that could be part of what these fantasies are about? What would it be like for you, if I told you that that was possible?
Karen Yates: Mmhmm.
Jera Brown: I'm imagining somebody asking those questions for the first time. And one of the things that comes to mind is — so, I take calls on NiteFlirt. And people tend to call me when they don't know where else to go, and confess what they enjoy. Many of them are in marriages, that they're not comfortable outing their desires. Some of them are just people who don't know how to find other people that share their desires. And I just want to give space for the extreme loneliness that can live around these things, as Brandon was talking about — that some of these are exceptionally common. And it's not until we start to be truthful with ourselves and the people in our life that we realize, like, probably a lot of other people, even people you're in relationships with, that carry it too. There are also probably things that are a little deeper, that you might carry shame and guilt around, that it's not just about control. It's about — what comes to mind is wanting to just your wife up in a nun's outfit. Or whatever it is around it. And there's a journey here. There's a journey to having radical honesty with people around us. There's a journey towards finding people that can share these things with us, you know. And once again, it's not easy, but it's also not impossible. It's definitely not impossible. So it's something to talk to your therapist about. There are support groups. There's always ways of like, starting to talk about these things that have been held in the shadow. And once they're out of the shadow, you realize that they're really not as scary as you thought. I don't know. Brandon, anything to follow up about that?
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Yeah. You know, especially with Catholic guilt, too, and especially with the fantasies around domination and control. Think of all of the themes. The domination of the flesh. These things that are liter— that I have heard spoken in service, right? This theme of being an agent of the conqueror of the world, right? Conquering the Spiritual World, dominating the flesh, bending it to the will of a higher power. Come on! I mean—
Karen Yates: That's hot!
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: To become imbued with that, or infused with that motive — you know, with that agenda, or have it light the kindling in you that is already akin to that. If we are made in the image of the creator, in that sense., well, just as — and this is what I talk about with folks who have retained their faith, and are kinksters — is finding the likeness in a way that isn't oppressive, where control and domination are not the same thing as oppression. And so, liberating those fantasies of those feelings from an oppressive dynamic or oppressive force, and actually bringing them into the world in a way that, to an extent, they've been charged to, but actually in a healthy way, and in a consensual way. They experience that as a spiritual moment, when they share that in a kink scene. Being the agent of that control and domination, being the arbiter of will upon the flesh isn't actually contrary to the mission of their faith. I share that example of the folks who I've met who are doing it, because I want to normalize this process. I want to normalize that question that the person submitted. That is a normal question to have. This is a normal experience to have. So many people have the same experience, and are on the same journey, both in their place and in the place of the folks who I've talked about who are living their kink life while retaining their faith. So they're not alone. It's just a long way of saying that they're not alone.
Karen Yates: I'll return to the conversation in a moment. Are you looking to improve erotic communication with your partner? I help couples increase pleasure, learn how to express desires, and become more connected to their own bodies and each other. All of this through dynamic, somatic-focused sessions. Go to the show notes or karen-yates.com to schedule your free consultation with me.
And now, back to the discussion with Brandon Hunter-Haydon and Jera Brown. In this half, we talk about how to move out of intense religious indoctrination. First, Brandon begins with thoughts on some of the extreme states of Catholicism.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Especially with Catholicism, there is a value of extreme states. Agony and ecstasy. Look at representations and a lot of Catholic art, and figures, right? The ecstasy of St. Teresa being like one of the ones that readily comes to mind. But there are several more. Catholicism especially, as opposed to Protestantism, which tends to be more laconic, tends to be a little bit more like solid and staid, getting away from like the passions of Catholicism. Catholicism is really passionate in a lot of regards. Lots of ritual, and there is a preoccupation with agony and ecstasy. Of carnality. Even the depictions of the crucifixion, of the Passion of the Christ during Catholicism, are markedly different than Protestantism. The flesh is really quite central to Catholicism. Yearning, desire, suffering, these are actually beautiful parts of the human experience — they can be, right? They're natural parts of the human experience, part of who we are. What do they suggest? Our aliveness. Those are states of aliveness, just as much as rest and comfort and softness are. And I wonder if kink — especially for the person who wrote that question — if there are states of agony and ecstasy which could be valued states within a Catholic framework, could be attained and sought after in a context of mutuality and consent, even just in their own fantasy, as not being violations of the tenets of their faith, but actually being ways of community. For some people, that would seem like a leap. But you might be surprised, when you start to really get with it. What are those states about? What is the proximity between the flesh and the divine that is happening in those moments?
Jera Brown: I feel like I want to talk directly about God for a minute, too, because I think — this isn't for everybody. Not everybody cares what God thinks or feels about this. But for those of you listening who do, who are afraid that it is possible to fall so deeply into your own desires that you can separate yourself from the pleasure, the respect, the love of God... It's not possible. It's not.
As Brandon was talking about, like, being created in the image of this God — there's so much theology around what it means, in the Christendom, the incarnation of Jesus, of redeeming the flesh, of being Christ in the flesh, that the flesh is holy and beautiful. It is beautiful across religious traditions. It is sacred. It is not separate from our spirit. And because of that, the desires of the Spirit are just as holy and sacred. And there are ways of being unjust to that which is holy and sacred — which would be hurting other people, outside of their consent and their lines. But I truly believe, and I think any of us who have some sort of relationship with a divine, a loving spirit, will know: that divine loving spirit is with us. It just is. And following these things, the desires of your heart — the guilt of not following those things does an injustice to the Creator that created them.
Karen Yates: That's lovely. Thank you, Jera.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: That's beautiful.
Karen Yates: I want to get back to a topic, or a point that was made early on, that living in this world — say, of extreme religious dogma — does lead to a type of PTSD, if you're starting to feel like you're working against that system, or that you're not in alignment anymore with that system, or that way of thinking. And when you look, say — I know Catholicism is not the only religion that prohibits against this — but things like masturbation, homosexuality, sex outside of heterosexual marriage, using contraception. These are really large swaths of ways of being, sexually, right? And when there's prohibitions against them, and you're in this system, and perhaps you have a desire to masturbate, or perhaps you are gay, how does one begin? I mean, we've talked a bit tonight about how one begins to heal. There's therapy, there's communities. What else would you say, as a way to begin healing?
Jera Brown: So for me, a big part of the healing process has started with theology. And I wanted to give a few possibilities, for those of you — if you still care about looking at things through the church's perspective, or whatever. There are alternative church perspectives, even within Catholicism, around these issues. Todd Salzman is the author of a book called "Sexual Ethics: A Theological Introduction," as well as "The Sexual Person." I interviewed him for my blog once in 2018. He teaches at a Catholic University, and he says, "I tell my students that the Catholic Church needs a good theology of foreplay, and a spirituality of foreplay as well. I see that as something very positive and healthy, in terms of sexual relationships, which could create a more positive perspective on pleasure and desire, and overcome the implicit dualism that has plagued the Christian tradition." He gets very heady about things. He's a true theologian. But he's someone to look at.
Somebody else that changed my life, who's now deceased, but her work lives on, is Marcella Althaus-Reid, who wrote the book "Indecent Theology," which I recommend to everybody. So there are positive Catholic sexual ethics out there to find. So that's one way of going about it.
Karen Yates: Thanks, Jera.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Well, I think educating oneself is the other thing, right? So, community is a huge part of that. I remember when I allowed myself to read books that were more or less forbidden, or listen to speakers, or seek out information — even just, like, sound science, biological science — there was so much risk associated with it. Not even because I thought someone might find out, but risk to myself, risk to my own worldview, which is part of what generates some of the fear that fuels the guilt. Taking the fruit from the tree of knowledge, as it were, right? And then learning what they ought not to learn. When everything that I'm that I'm supposed to be focusing on, everything that I ought to know, is supposed to come from this, more or less, single source. That alone, allowing oneself to seek and partake of knowledge from different perspectives, is a really dynamic act. And so, I don't want to gloss over that. Allowing oneself to look up either authors we're citing here, or other sources, like sexual education, sexual resources, theologians who are writing on this. Other spiritual perspectives, other religious perspectives as well, to complicate one's worldview. Which, to me, actually helps distill my true relationship to the source that aligns for me. When I look at other worldviews, when I look at contrasting and comparative perspectives, it actually helps me refine my own relationship to what I think, what I relate to as the source, or the creator. My own spiritual connection. It doesn't threaten it. It helps refine it.
Karen Yates: I guess my last question is, does guilt serve? You were talking a little bit earlier, Brandon, about what does guilt give us? Or, what's it there for? Does guilt serve us, ultimately? Is it helpful?
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Yes, I think it is, if I qualify it in this way. When I think of guilt — and this might be a really simplistic way of reducing it — but in order for me to partition guilt from shame, I tend to think of guilt as the feeling of like, I have done something wrong. Or I've done something that is misaligned with the person that I want to be. But I've done something. It's the result of an action. Shame is, I am wrong. I am inherently or deeply within, a source of corruption. It's much more encompassing, I think, when I discern the two.
So guilt, I think, has value. Because it points to our values. I think it gives us an opportunity actually to look at our values. I feel guilty for this thing. Is there an obvious or apparent harm that I can attend to, that I can realize as a consequence of that choice? Is it a harm or a consequence that is actually manufactured by a belief that I have, rather than what's in front of me? What does that say about the kind of person that I want to be? I feel guilty about this because I have violated a value or a tenet that's actually important to me, that feels important to me? Or do I feel guilty because I feel that I've disappointed someone else, or something else, that I ought to be subservient to? And a big part of this, I think, is about seeking the surrender. That's a big part of religion. The most powerful moments that I have, which I'll never deny, are moments of extreme surrender, sublime surrender, in a religious environment. And to this day, there are few experiences that match it, but the experiences that do — some of them, pretty kinky. I don't think that's a coincidence!
Jera Brown: Right. No.
Karen Yates: Yeah. Yeah.
Jera Brown: That's great.
Karen Yates: Anything else either one of you would like to add? This has been a really deep conversation.
Jera Brown: Yeah, there's a few other resources that I was looking at. On Instagram, Dr. Laura E. Anderson writes about religious trauma, sexual assault, and domestic violence. And posts are very, very related. Some of her posts are, lessons we didn't learn in purity culture. Sexual arousal does not equal consent. But there's a lot of ways that, like, you don't even realize probably what has been indoctrinated in you until you see it. On Twitter, there's Megan, @thepursuinglife, who hosts a Twitter chat for those who are deconstructing their faith. And it's incredibly queer friendly, sex-positive. Those two, I'm pretty sure, are Protestant. I don't know where the Catholic Twitter is at. Oh, man there was one that I was looking up on Twitter: @stpromiscuity. Ministry dropout, preaching sex positivity and ethics. Super fun. I think if you start to look, you will find other people who are breaking it down. The deconstruction movement is very strong right now. It's very positive.
Karen Yates: Wonderful. Thank you, Brandon. Thank you. Jera.
Brandon Hunter-Haydon: Thank you.
Jera Brown: Thanks.
Karen Yates: Great conversation. For more information on Jera Brown and Brandon Hunter-Haydon, go to the show notes. There, you will find all of the resources listed in this episode. Many of the books can be purchased on Bookshop, our affiliate link that benefits independent booksellers and Wild & Sublime. If you'd like a transcript of this episode, go to the episode page on wildandsublime.com.
Wild & Sublime is supported in part by our Sublime Supporter, Full Color Life Therapy, therapy for all of you at fullcolorlifetherapy.com. Well, that's it, folks. Have a very pleasurable week. Thank you for listening. If you know someone who might be interested in this episode, send it to them. Do you like what you heard? Then give us a nice review on your podcast app. You can follow us on social media @wildandsublime and sign up for newsletters at wildandsublime.com. I'd like to thank associate producer Julia Williams and design guru Jean-Francois Gervais. Theme Music by David Ben-Porat. This episode was edited by The Creative Imposter studios. Our media sponsor is Rebellious Magazine, feminist media, at rebelliousmagazine.com.
Want to rev up your relationship and bust out of limiting patterns?
Host Karen Yates is an intimacy coach and somatic sex educator who works with couples online and in person in Chicago to help improve their intimate communication and expand pleasure in a process that can be embodied, meaningful, and fun.
Go to karen-yates.com and set up a free Zoom consultation and to download her free guide: Say It Better in Bed! 3 Practival Ways to Improve Intimate Communication.
Are you a sex-positive patron? The Afterglow brings you bonus content, merch discounts, early notice of show dates, and other goodies! Join now to help us continue to spread the message of sex-positivity. Or show your love for Wild & Sublime any time: Leave a tip!
Want to be Wild & Sublime out in the world? Check out our new tees and accessories for maximum visibility. Our Limited Collection might help your inner relationship anarchist run free…
Thinking of starting your own podcast? Buzzsprout can help you create, host and promote it! Plus lots of useful tools and resources to streamline the process and level up your pod game. Use our affiliate link for a $20 credit!
- Jera Brown – Sex and relationship columnist & fetish provider. Their podcast is Left-handed Journeys about the role sexuality has played in people’s spiritual identities and practices.
- Brandon Hunter-Haydon – Surrogate Partner and Intimacy Coach
More on faith and sexuality:
- Dr. Laura E. Anderson on Instagram
- @thepursuinglife on Twitter
- @StPromiscuity on Twitter
- Marlene Winnell – Religious Trauma Syndrome
Books mentioned in this episode:
- Philip Gulley – “If Grace Is True”; “If God Is Love”
- Todd Salzman – “Sexual Ethics: A Theological Introduction” ; “The Sexual Person: Toward a Renewed Catholic Anthropology”
- Marcella Althaus-Reid – “Indecent Theology”. See also: The Queer God
- Many more recs on our Bookshop page!
Looking for episodes on a specific topic? There’s a list!
Listen & Follow
Find us on your favorite podcast app:
Header photo by Isabella and Zsa Fischer on Unsplash