• Musings

    Writing a disabled perspective into erotica

    [Note: Xan West does not use pronouns and goes by “Xan.”] Language is powerful. It has the ability to enhance and validate someone’s experience, just as it has the ability to invalidate. Erotica writers are especially imbued with this influence, as their work requires them to describe bodies, sexual acts, and lived experiences more intimately…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    When dildos came out of the closet

    In the 1970s, dildos were a point of contention in the feminist movement. A 1974 issue of Lesbian Tide warned: “anyone admitting to using a dildo today would probably be verbally castigated for enjoying ‘phallic’ pleasure.” Some activists thought dildos were too reminiscent of the patriarchy. Others felt that since dildos specifically didn’t require men, using them…

  • Musings

    Embracing the sexual needs of Little People

    Dr. Marylou Naccarato

    Dr. Marylou Naccarato is doing something pretty groundbreaking: she’s talking about sex as a Little Person. According to a recent profile in The Atlantic, Naccarato is the first in her field to focus specifically on the sexual needs of Little People — physical, emotional, and psychosocial. Naccarato, who has a type of dwarfism called…

  • Musings

    A little kink, a lot of confidence

    “Sex with a disability is a tough sell,” writes a queer woman named Carrie, “but not (just) for the reasons people assume. In my experience, the hardest part isnโ€™t convincing someone else youโ€™re desirable โ€” itโ€™s convincing yourself that your body is worth pleasing.” For her, one small act of kink gave her more…

  • Musings

    The amazing, snappy, one-handed condom

    It’s so simple, so ingenious, it’s surprising nobody has thought of it before: a condom that can be safely and easily opened with one hand. Designer Benjamin Pawle came up with the idea as part of his two-part “Preserving Human Dignity” project, which seeks to empower those with hemiplegia — a disorder that causes…

  • Musings

    A quadriplegic woman’s journey to sexual happiness

    This personal essay was originally published in 2006, but it is so honest and important that it deserves to be highlighted. Getting Around: How I Discovered My Wheelchair Wasn’t a Chastity Belt by Tiffiny Carlson is a poignant piece about a woman growing up and taking charge of her sexuality. Carlson broke her neck when…