Emily Foster aka Emily Nagoski, Part Two

Where was I? Oh, right, books and sex and the right way to do things. I have finished her first book, How Not to Fall, since the last post and I gained insight into her terms. I think. She is a very scholarly person and touches on a lot of social norms. Go read it, it’s great and I look forward to the next opening in my reading schedule so I can read the second one.

Romantic non-concordance is one term she uses when the hero discovers something about the heroine that he can’t accept and that she can’t change. Conflict, right? Tension, sure. Sexy? Like a train in a tunnel.

031818 train

Emily recommended some books for different ways heroines are represented. Romance writers often feature virgin heroines who experience amplifying arousal. This would usually work if the heroine is older and maybe has thought about sex a time or two. Judith Ivory, Untie My Heart, is a good example.

Then you have the characters that are ambivalent about the whole romance thing.

Jennifer Crusie, Bet Me.

And a favorite for both Emily and myself, Flowers From the Storm by Laura Kinsale. All. Time. Favorite. A hero who believes that the heroine is a person and deserves a life.

Emily also recommends that all women read Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny by Kate Manne.

This is where the idea of human givers vs. human beings started.

031818 discord

Her next non-fiction book, Burnout, deals with the stress of trying to be the woman who does it all. If you manage to hold on to energy and time, as a human giver, you have to give it to someone else. You absolutely must.

A study was done using rats in a lab. During the study, Emily swears the rats were treated very well. After that, she can’t guarantee anything. However, the rats had implants in their nucleus accumbens. A Zap to the front of the n.a. felt good. But a Zap to the back felt bad. After this conditioning went on for a while, the rats were placed in a calm enclosure. There, any stimulation, all zaps, is translated as good. In the same way, if the rat is in a scary place that makes him nervous, all zaps are bad.

031818 lab rat

Imagine you are in a nightclub, Iggy Pop playing and you are dancing with someone you really like. Then that person starts tickling you. Human tickling. Done during sex, it can be sexy. Done when you are mad at the tickler, your reaction will be very different.

Genitals are like ovens, you have to preheat them. Sometimes a couple can get so busy that there isn’t much time for sexual foreplay. This is where our huge inventive brains can play a part. While Emily was touring for the books and writing the next one, and her husband was drawing and going to comic conventions, they couldn’t find much time to get together. Then she found a Ghostbusters jumpsuit on eBay and wore that for some of the best sex they had. Lube became ectoplasm. Laughing is so sexy.

I say that because my husband made the mistake of telling me that Neil Armstrong backward is Gnorts Mr. Alien. And at a very sensitive time. Neither of us could stop laughing.

The best definition of orgasm that Emily has seen is this: A variable transient peak sensation of intense pleasure creating an altered state of consciousness, usually with an initiation accompanied by involuntary, rhythmic contractions in the pelvic area that releases sexual tension.

031818 romance

Who will you allow to be with you during this event? Trust is very important. It’s the answer to the question, are you there for me?

Have you heard about the Ludic Factor? In a classroom situation, students created an alternate reality that allowed them to learn at their own pace in their own way. Every student should be so lucky.

More books to explore different relationships when the woman is in a difficult situation. Courtney Milan, The Countess Conspiracy. Radio Silence by Alyssa Cole. Busman’s Honeymoon by Dorothy L. Sayers, a Lord Peter Wimsey book. “The only crime that love can commit is to lie down joyless.”

Back to Orgasm. You didn’t think we were done, did you? A lower number of women can orgasm from vaginal stimulation alone. Most need clitoral stimulation. Every clitoris is different. News you can use: Strategic crying is a thing. In a past relationship, Emily told her partner what she liked, but the guy kept doing things the way a former girlfriend liked it. He was really good at it, but it just didn’t do much for her. So she got his attention by crying and said, “I feel like you are doing that like she liked it because you aren’t thinking about me, you’re thinking about her.” That was exactly what he needed to make the change. Remember, different G spots like different things.

031818 crying

Did you know: There is a lot more penis down inside the body, mostly erectile tissue. Same with the clitoris. Internal stimulation of the clit through the vaginal wall is often enough to produce orgasm but not always. The angle of how a penis is attached to the pelvic bone is different in every man.

Attachment and proximity seeking are instincts in infants. Human babies are born way too early and need to be cared for by an adult. Your heart starts beating in someone else’s body. The process of becoming an adult is the process of taking responsibility for all of your own needs. We must then get affection from another person. Without it, babies die or are emotionally challenged. Attachment is important. Eye contact, touching sensitive parts, and eventually verbal interaction.

In adult relationships, we want a Safe Haven, a place we go when seeking comfort from distress. Separation distress, studies show, is not relieved with emails, texts, or voice messages. Only a long phone call can take the place of being with our loved one. Because it hurts when you leave. It’s normal and healthy. Unless you can’t tolerate the separation at all for a few days. Heartbreak is well named.

You have a Secure Base when you decide to spend 24 hours together. Oxytocin is the hormone associated with Love. You are relieved and happy when this person can sleep with you.

031818 baby

Attachment styles run from Secure to Anxious attachment, someone who clings really hard, to Avoidant attachment. No gender differences here, both men and women experience all these styles. Some can even change. Avoidant people don’t not attach, they run from it.

Attachment dynamics. Are you and the person you love a good match in styles?

An anxious attachment person will believe every indication that the other person will leave. They blow it out of proportion. Just like rubber band dynamics, can’t live with him, can’t live without.

This can create a Chasing dynamic. One person is avoidant, the other anxious.

I’m snipping a section of Emily’s talk here because I need this to be a reasonable length and I want to you want to go listen to her. There is so much more she has to show you. Like:

  • Put pleasure at the center of your definition of sexual well being and you allow desire to emerge from pleasure. Pleasure is the measure.
  • Prioritize sex. Make your place of joining a magic circle. Bring in Ritual and Play. Two people who are best friends will care for each other as well as take pleasure from each other.

    031818 garden

Emily finished with this image story: The Garden. You were given a plot of fertile earth when you were born. Family and friends and culture planted stuff there for you because you were just a baby. When you are an adult, you need to weed out the stuff that is not beautiful or nourishing. Our patches are all connected and adjacent. The more we weed and improve our patch, the better the ones around us get. And the better the ones we create for our heroines will be.

Thanks for reading, I’ll be back on Thursday.

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