Do you know how much personal courage a woman must summon to seek her own sexual pleasure when—
- She feels “too fat” to show her body;
- Everyone in her life likes her the way she is, funny, smart, accomplished and successful—and not particularly “sexy.”
- Her knowledge of alternative sexuality options is minimal (very minimal);
- Her only role models for exciting sex lives at midlife are her friends who are “cheating” on their husbands;
- And she’s happily married and doesn’t want to “cheat’ on her husband?
Sooooo much courage. I don’t know how to define or quantify it. I only know most of us aren’t that brave. Thank you, Pamela, for being the intrepid sexual freedom fighter women need to read about.
A few months ago I met Pamela for lunch at an Indian restaurant. Excited about her upcoming first book and bubbling over with great anecdotes about her sexual quest, she is the sort of woman Mama called “pleasingly plump,” back in the day when that was a good thing, not a bad thing because now we are all supposed to be size 0-6, max. If I were a man (or bi or gay) I’m sure I would have fantasized touching her creamy skin and caressing her voluptuous flesh—because she is an appealing, sexy woman even if societal body ideals keep telling her she is not.
But Pamela is more than a curvaceous little ball of energy and charisma—she is a pioneer in fertility advocacy and founder of the American Fertility Association (AFA), a woman whose work is held in high regard in professional communities.
And that begs the question, Why would she risk encounters with “happy ending” masseuses—and much more!—and then make it all public in a book?
“My goal is to help emancipate women from the ‘woulda’s’ and ‘shoulda’s’ that have kept us in denial and darkness for thousands of years,” she says. “I know it’s possible for women to heal their sexual identities and embrace their bodies and desires in a safe, sane and consensual way—even within the bounds of marriage.”
Even within the bounds of marriage. That is what sets Pamela apart from other midlife women gone sexual adventuring. She doesn’t find a Boy Toy on an island vacation (or in her own back yard, cleaning the pool.) Nor does she do it with the neighbor’s husband, a co-worker or a guy she met at an upscale bar. In fact, she doesn’t “do it” in the conventional sense at all.
Shameless: then I ditched the diet, got naked, found true pleasure and somehow got home in time to cook dinner (Rodale Press) opens with Pamela and friends, including a sister, at a Korean Day spa in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Their conversation about weight and diets too quickly dissolves into sex talk, the kind of talk that leaves her feeling resentful and restless because she wants some of what they have—passion, big orgasms. She writes like she talks, fast and smart and funny. Here is an excerpt—
“Ya think we stand out enough?” Vicki said in her best Bronx honk. What didn’t she inherit from our mother?
“Nah, we blend right in,” I countered, glancing down at my ample C-cup breasts bobbing, cocking my head at the trainer bra–sized boobs of the dozen other boiling women and their offspring.
“One wrong move and my butt could cause some serious injury. I never saw so many small-boned people,” Beth whispered.
I was ready with my “back on Atkins—I have to lose 60 pounds—women are so screwed” rap when Beth usurped my place.
“I got the most amazing head last week,” she burst out, totally smug.
Oh no she didn’t! She’d switched up the order of our traditional agenda: weight and body image first, then sex…
.As I read the book—and I’m not giving away the intimate details because I don’t want to spoil it for you—I had moments between laughing and raising my fist in the air and saying, YES!—when I worried about Pamela. Women pay a price for being publicly sexual. I’m sure she is, or will be, getting hate mail from the anti-sex forces, but the fan mail will dwarf it. I admire her tremendously for stepping outside the confines of her secure life as a wife, mother and professional woman to share her sexual journey with other women. Trust me. You will learn something here and find inspiration for your own journey—even if you aren’t starting out as something of an erotic novice.
Pamela Madsen gives of herself out of an astonishing and frankly touching abundance of caring about other women. She knows that sexuality is intrinsic to our identity. And she believes that spending one’s life sexually frustrated is a terrible waste.
You can learn more about her and buy the book on the Shameless website.
copyright 2008-2011, www.sexyprime.typepad.com; PARTIAL reposts only permitted with link back to original article on SexyPrime