Running Time 94 minutes. Bonus Features 20 minutes. DVD is region free, NTSC
Betty took it one step further and had women talk about their sex lives. It's how she learned that most women had genital shame and didn't know how to stimulate themselves to orgasm.
Betty, Sheila Shea (the woman who assisted Betty's early groups), Marisa Black, Liandra Dahl, Davina Ingenue, Sayaka Adachi and me, Carlin, we're all in the circle.
The Monday after a bodysex worskhop weekend is always a mixture of exhilaration and exhaustion. There's just so many beautiful visuals, smells, and sounds - transcendent moments and deep transformation that it can be alot to process. This group was magical.
Usually, we don't know any of the women who'll be in the circle. They book over email and we never know who's going to walk through the door. But this time, we knew several women in the group. Somehow that had me a bit more on edge because I wanted everyone to have a positive experience. I guess there was a certain sense of performance anxiety.
Full-length windows framed daffodil blooms bright against vibrant and deep greens. For the comfort of bare flesh, the furnace was turned up, and turned up again. As dusk gathered, six of us breathed, coming together consciously with intention. We were here to explore ourselves. Together.
Inspired by the Bodysex viewing and discussion at Portland's In Other Words Feminist Community Center in February, we were here for a Self-Pleasuring Ritual. My co-facilitator for the Bodysex event, Barbara Wynne, spearheaded, hosted, and held space for this ritual.
In the invitation to this ritual of self-pleasure, Barbara wrote:
The room was full last Friday for a public viewing of the Bodysex Workshop DVD in Portland, Oregon, where I make my home. I had hoped we'd have twenty-five people show up, and almost twice that number attended.
Many friends were in the room, and seeing their curious, supportive faces in the audience calmed my loudly thumping heart. I'd hosted a private viewing in my home last year, but this was the first time I'd shown it publicly, my own body, face, cunt, and orgasm flickering on the screen behind me.
I got this email from one of the women from our last bodysex group...love:
Happy New Year to all my sexy Sisters
I had a great new years eve and it was unexpectedly Orgasmic.
My husband and myself were invited out to a house party at his sisters place. I was mingling and talking and getting caught up with everyone and everything that's going on in their life. A good song came on and Stephen found me and pulled me into the front room to dance, When the song was over, we sat down in the only place we could, a big arm chair.
My husband took the set part, so I had to take the arm part.
I went a little crazy with the photos during our last bodysex group. I even posted this pic on Instagram and got a message to kindly delete it from my account.
The visuals are so amazing that I want everyone to have a glimpse. When you're in the circle, you experience a high like you've never had before...
Sisterhood is better than any drug. So when one of the women asked for this pic and framed it my heart soared. I'm not the only one who wants to relish that moment ;)
This pic is from one of Caitlin's Body Pride workshops...if you're in Canada (I'm not sure exactly where she lives) and would like to go to one of her events or just look at body pride pics click here.
Got this email from one of the women in our last bodysex group this morning:
Recalling a conversation that we had in the Bodysex circle about what feminism means to us and how that word has become tainted with so many negative connotations... What does it mean to me now as I sit here in my life, a woman nearly 40 years old, working nearly full time, raising two school aged children, partnered and living in North American society?
Yes, I have it darned good compared to so many other women around the world, and yes, I guess I am one of those entitled white middle class women, but balancing motherhood, work, home life and my sexuality hasn’t been easy.
I grew up with a mother who made comments if I ate too many cookies...who believed all women should "look as good as they can". She'd been a beauty queen with blond hair, blue eyes, and a slim figure.
She was a product of her time - a time when a young woman dreaming of becoming an investigative reporter was financially shifted to teaching so she'd be home by 3pm to bake cookies for her children.
Another email/thank you from our last bodysex group:
Hi lovely ladies,
It is fantastic to check my email in the morning and find a new email from one of you wonderful women :)
As for me the workshop has changed me. I am happier, more communicative with my partner (and with myself about my sexual desires) and most of all I am more comfortable in my skin. I know this will have a HUGE effect on my parenting and the role modeling I am doing for my daughter.
We started a group email exchange with the women from the last bodysex group. Here's one of the responses (gives me chills):
Hi my lovely friends,
I hope you are all as happy as I am. When I walked into Betty's place, I walked in with sadness from many things that have happened in my life and from many things that I have wonted to happened in my life that have not. When I walked out of Betty's that Sunday night, and I do not know about anyone else, but I did not wont to leave. I was different, I felt different and at first, I did not know what had changed, but there was a change.
As I watched you all leave one by one, I hoped the change that I felt, was not the energy of all of you in that room.
Just a curious question: Do you ever get turned on during your sessions with the women you are trying to help? (either during your one-on-one sessions or during your big group sessions)? I've never been in the presence of another woman masturbating (and orgasming), but I would think it would be quite erotic and stimulating. Anyway, just wondering...
Hope you had a good Thanksgiving!
I’ve known Betty since 1988. We met in a Women’s Group in NYC called ‘The Bliss Group’.
The mission of this group was: ‘I Am the Source of Life Showing up as Bliss’ - To explore that concept and to find ways to make it happen in our individual lives as well as relationships, community and the world. My individual group was wonderful; women of all ages ranging from early twenties to mid-70’s.
Today I had surgery to remove a lipoma that grew on the muscle right over my rib cage. It wasn't painful but it was always tender and irritated me when I ran. During this weekend's workshop, I was conscious of it the entire time. It was time for it to go.
I woke up at 5 am and headed to Brooklyn Hospital. Several people asked me about my doctor - where "he" went to school etc. My surgeon is a woman. If I have the opportunity, I will always choose a woman.
As I felt the effects of the anasthesia start to kick in, I realized that my entire surgical team were women. I felt so at ease. It reminded me of the bodysex group and the wonderful feeling of being in a room filled with female energy.
Our November workshop was over overbooked. We had two friends from the UK who wanted to be in the group together...then I miscounted. Instead of 10 women in the circle I'd booked 12 plus Betty and me. The room was literally wall-to-wall women. It was beautiful.
Seeing the 15 hooks in Betty's foray filled with coats and clothes gave me a tingle. It was like we were back in the 70's when modern feminism was born and Betty's sexual consciousness raising groups were the talk of the town.