Episode 16: LaSara Firefox , "Sex-Positive and Body-Positive Parenting"

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In this interview you will learn the basics of sex and body-positive parenting and get some specific recommendations on how all of us can unhook from the negative cultural influences around these issues. Beth and Lasara delve into the issues of boundaries, what they are, and how they are useful in relationships and parenting: “As a parent, setting my own boundaries allows my children to have their own boundaries. It gives them a language around having them, and it models positive boundary awareness and self-care”. Also hear from Lasara about the age-old question, ‘When is the right time to talk about sex?’. Lasara gives an incredible answer, both honest and sensible, but also takes into account what the parent is able to consciously give in that moment. This will support all parents in the journey of supporting children to be healthy and empowered, while also taking care of themselves. Finally, body image is faced in this fantastic interview. Lasara Firefox: “I really think that nakedness is a huge component of body positivity. If we don’t see how bodies age, it is much more challenging for us to have a positive relationship with our bodies as they change”. Get insight into a new system of relating and parenting, and let go of our old cultural adages such as ‘Bonding through self-deprecation’ and ‘focusing on what is wrong’. This interview will get you on your way to a new way engaging and parenting.

Transcript

LaSara Firefox , "Sex-Positive and Body-Positive Parenting"

Intro
This program brought to you by personallifemedia.com is suitable for mature audiences only and may contain explicit sexual information.

Announcer: This is Part II of a two-part pod cast. If you’d like Part I, you can find it on Personallifemedia.com.

Beth Crittenden: Hello, everyone, and welcome to ‘A Taste of Sex’ – Guest interviews. I’m your host, Beth Crittenden, on Personallifemedia, coming to you from One Taste Urban Retreat Centre in San Fransisco, where it’s our desire to weave orgasm into the world conversation, and into our bodies. We have a weekly lecture series, here at One Taste. It’s called the Hybrid Practice Series, where educators from a wide variety of disciplines and areas of study including sensuality, spirituality, sexuality, connection, communication…, all across the board, have come to One Taste and presented their work. It’s under the auspices of the ‘Connect and Open’ collaboration.
Tonight, we are really pleased to have, LaSara Firefox, who is a writer, a ritualist, and a sex positive activist and educator; here to speak to us about unifying the mind and the body, and being in the presence of love.
Join us in ‘A Taste of Sex’, as we hear from LaSara Firefox, about how all is divine, and how you can actually access divinity through the portal of the body. We’ll explore the question of boundary. Specifically, we’ll talk about Sex Positive, and Body Positive Parenting.
Welcome back to ‘A Taste of Sex – Guest Speaker Interviews’. This is your host Beth Crittenden, on Personallifemedia, coming to you from One Taste Urban Retreat Centre, San Fransisco. Our guest today is LaSara Firefox. We’ve spent some time today, already, talking about how all is divine and how you access that through bodily experience. And one thing that we’re going to talk about now is, Sex Positive Parenting and Body Positive Parenting; so we can create cycles in the future of people living in their body, and being very connected.

LaSara Firefox: Absolutely! Well, there is one thing I want to say about the body being a pearl to the divine, and then we’ll launch into the parenting component. But there is a quote from a book, a holy book that I refer to, which is called, ‘The Book of the Law’. The quote is, “I am divided for Love’s sake, for the chance of Union. This is the Creation of the world. That the pain of division is as nothing; and the pain of disillusion, all.” And that middle part there…, that it’s the creation of the world, is metaphorically so great. Because all that is, wouldn’t know itself without the separation. And in this cosmology, we’re born to separation, so that we can seek reunification. We come from the same place. Even if we’re looking at it on a purely scientific level…, all energy is undifferentiated. The only that you and I get to interact, is we’ve decided to, you know, evolve into these bodies, you know, in some way, that we have consciousness and we get to interact. Right? But on a certain level, and even right now, energy is undifferentiated. On a certain level, your cells and my cells are in total communication in this moment. And that’s another thing that I work with, in my floating workshops actually…, is the concept of Non-verbal Subtle Communication…, so…

Beth Crittenden: What are certain tips …, just to give them that extra credit.

LaSara Firefox: For the communication?

Beth Crittenden: Yeah.

LaSara Firefox: Well, the first one is listen to your body. And the second one is, listen with your body. That’s two easy ones, as far as Non Verbal and Subtle Communication goes. I believe that, what many people refer to as Extra Sensory Perception, I think is psychological communication. Our hearts are communicating…, they’re sending off electromagnetic fields, pulses, waves…, they can be read by equipment. So, I consider it pretty much a no-brainer that our bodies would be reading and responding to those kind of subtle communications as well. I mean, if a machine can read my heart, I’m pretty sure that your body can too.

Beth Crittenden: What are the things that people can do to increase the likelihood that they can listen, and what they can do to interpret what their bodies are telling them?

LaSara Firefox: Well, there are a lot of techniques. And to go into that, would take a long time. I’m going to do some of it at the workshop tonight with you guys, and of course, people can check out my website. And when ecstatic flirting comes out, they’ll get some tips from there. So, I do one-on-one coaching, and group-coaching. And I love working with people and helping them to get…, what I call it as…, to come home to their own hearts. You know, to get really present in their own desires and their own bodies. So, its my total joy that I get to do this for a living…, everyday.

Beth Crittenden: What of this do you pass on to your daughters? How do you translate this to people who are beginning to come into their own?

LaSara Firefox: Absolutely! So, with Sex Positive and Body Positive Parenting, the first thing is that it starts from the get-go, although it’s never too late to start now. So, it starts with transparency. It starts with being honest. And honesty is very tricky with our kids. And one of the main things that I think is super-important, is owning our own boundaries. And owning our own triggers too. For example, you get onto an elevator and you’re fine. And all of a sudden, somebody else gets onto the elevator and you get nervous. Like nothing changed, except that this person’s on the elevator, and all of a sudden you realize that they’re the ones who are nervous. Or you’re standing in line, and you have nowhere to get to, but all of a sudden you feel antsy. Right? So, you look back, and three people back somebody can’t stop looking at their watch and tapping their foot, and like you’re feeling nervous for them. It happens all the time. You’re walking down the street. You feel someone looking at you. How does that happen? But it does right?
So, starting with the assumption that our bodies are communicating, lying to our kids is just a bad idea. They’re going to call us on it. They’re going to know it; they’re not going to trust us anymore. So, don’t lie to your kids. When you feel nervous about something, tell them you feel nervous about it. Be transparent about that too. You don’t have to have all the answers; you don’t have to be right all the time. The best thing that you can do with your children is to be transparent with them, and allow them to witness your decision making strategies. So, though only a few of us have a really functional modeling of resilient decision making strategies, and that’s what’s it’s all about – Sex positivity, Body Positivity and how to make your own conclusions, and how to believe in the messages that you’re getting from your own guidance, from your own feelings. So, when our kids ask questions, or say things about sex that triggers us…, for me, when that happens, I say, “Yeah. That kind of…, that’s a good question. And I’m not sure about how I feel about it right now. I will answer it later. I need to think about it.” Or, if I do have an answer, even if it’s a little uncomfortable for me to say it, I’ll say, “Oh! Wow! Well, that’s the question we’re looking at now. Hmmm. Okay, so what I think about that is…” And so owning that it’s your opinion, not making other people wrong; that’s another thing to having multiple rule structures.
My kids, when their dad and I were together, they had a rule structure at our house, a rule structure at my parent’s house and a rule structure at his parent’s house, and then a rule structure out in the world, right? So, training them to being sensitive to their environment, so that they know that rule structures are variable are very important when you’re dealing with 1. A child’s ability to making their own decisions and their own identity, and 2. You’re raising them in a Sex positive way in a Sex negative culture. So, there’s a certain amount of having to be careful and respecting other people’s boundaries. You know, making sure it’s fine for you to be playing with your yoni in your room, but you can’t play with your yoni in the living room, or at grandma’s and grandpa’s. It’s just not okay, you know. And make it about grandma and grandpa. It’s not about the kid. The kid can, you know, she can…, it’s her body to do what she will with it.
When it comes to my boundaries…, when my little one was little, she loved to cuddle. She loved skin to skin. Our culture is really weird about that. But in Japan, they have a word for it, and it’s called Skinship. Physical touch is a nutrient and something that we need. We need it. And my daughter was a C-section baby, and she stopped nursing early, and I kept cuddling her. Because, you know, if I had been holding her if she was to nurse, she would have got a lot more cuddling. So, I’d take the time in the morning. Even if I had gotten up before she was awake, I would go back to bed. And she would want me to take my clothes off, and I’d take my clothes off and cuddle with her. At a certain point, she…, it would come to the point where she would be so cuddled up and she would go, “Hold me like a ball!”, and I’d cuddle her, and cuddle her and she would put her feet in between my legs finally, I got to the point when my boundary was being pushed. And I was like, “You’re not going to get back in there. So, (LAUGHS) you may as well get used to being outside now.” And we had a conversation, actually, which was awesome. And I said, “Do you remember what it was like to be in there?” And she said, “Yeah.” And I said, “Well, what was it like?” And she said, “Well, it was nice and warm and quiet. And then somebody opened a window, and I fell out.” (LAUGHS)

Beth Crittenden: Oh, my gosh! That’s amazing!

LaSara Firefox: Yeah. And she was like two and a half. She was a C-section baby. So, that was the most, like, accurate story she could have had for it. So, that was really, really amazing. That’s the cool thing too, about having conversations with your kids. So, I went from there and said, “You know, I totally understand you love to cuddle, and I love to cuddle you. But my boundary is that my yoni is just for me. And your body is yours, and my body is mine, and this is my boundary.”
So, setting my boundaries does two things. 1: It allows my child to have her boundaries. Right? And it gives her a language, around having her boundaries. Right?
And 2: It models positive boundary setting, and boundary awareness. Right? So, I’m giving her skills that are going to come in handy, to say the least, throughout her life. Because, sex positivity isn’t about saying ‘Yes’. It’s about saying, ‘Yes’, ‘Maybe’ and ‘No’. And to know actually what each of them mean, and to used it accurately.

COMMERCIAL BREAK

Beth Crittenden: So, how do you respond to the people who say kids are too young to hear about sex? What’s your idea about when can they hear about it…?

LaSara Firefox: That’s an awesome question! And my answer is, that if they’re asking you, they’re old enough to know. I mean, it makes sense to me. That’s my basic rule about anything. If…., you know…., if a kid is well-enough developed…, psychologically, emotionally, etc., to formulate a question, they’re old enough to receive an answer. Now, the answer should be accurate, but it should be age-appropriate, and it should be something that they can understand. And at the same time, I always say…, reserve the right. If it’s too much for you, claim it! You know, “That’s too much for me!” And this isn’t just about sex positivity. It’s about anything.
We were…, my ex-husband, my kids and I, we were on vacation…, we were traveling in the car, we were all hanging out. And all of a sudden, Hitler came up as a sudden for no reason. And my 5-year old daughter, who’s a brainach; she’s totally brilliant…, she’s 10 now; she was five at the time, she says, “Daddy! Who was Hitler?” Right? And he starts trying to explain who Hitler was to a 5-year old kid. And he gets 5 words out of his mouth, and he starts shaking his head, and he says, “I can’t do that right now. I can’t explain that to you right now. We’re going to have to wait on that one.” So, recognizing one’s own limits, is an important part of communication.

Beth Crittenden: And tell us about the Body Positive Parenting as well. How do you deal with all the stereotypes, and images and impressions of women being super, super…

LaSara Firefox: Well…, I know this is radical, but I grew up in a naked community. (LAUGHS) Yeah. I grew up in a naked community and I’m naked all the time. And I really think that, that nakedness is a huge component of Body Positivity. I think if we don’t see how bodies age, it’s much more challenging for us to have a much more positive relationship with our bodies as they change. And so, I’m so incredibly thankful that I had that kind of bodies modeled for me. And so, I model it for my kids. Not…, its not out of service to them. I’m a naked person. I’ve just never been inculturated to clothes. I mean, I wear them when I have to, but if I can get away with not wearing them, I don’t. So, you know…, I’ll be naked all day, you know. So, I think that, that kind of body ease is a very important part of it.
I think having the conversation. I think that, like in Sexy Witch, should I talk very much about self-esteem and body image, and I’m far from perfect..., and I own that in there. Like up and down and sideways. It’s like the whole preamble of Chapter 2, is like I don’t have this figured out. You know, it’s not like I’ve got it all down and I’m fine. It was when I was writing the book, it was a very intense experience. Because, honestly in certain sections, a lot more questions came up than answers. So, I think part of it is being present in the enquiry.
What does it mean to be Body Positive? What does it mean to have Positive Body Models? What does it mean to be accepting of ourselves? And also not make other people wrong. So…, again it has to do with keeping the conversation open. And when we see something or hear something that triggers us, we bring it up.
Like my daughter will talk about how her friends and like she said, she’s 10, and she’ll talk about kids and girls in her class are dieting, and this and that, and other thing. And she’s itty-bitty. And she’s like, “I don’t understand. It’s crazy”. And it is crazy. And so we talk about it, and we do the best that we can. It’s pretty impossible to avoid media. I was raised pretty media-free. I have not been successful in doing that with my kids. My parents made a very strong stand on that and I haven’t been as strong as that. So, it means having critical discussions. And not only criticalising, I mean, that’s bad. I mean, critical thinking. Discussions where you’re actually having a discussion, not just harshing on something or making something wrong, or making something right, or whatever. But whenever an opinion comes up to look at that, and look at the cultural context, and as much as possible to educate ourselves. And to catch ourselves when we are modeling behavior that we don’t want our kids to catch on. For example, we stand in front of the mirror and go, “God! I’m so fat!” That’s sending a message to our kids. And regardless of whether we’re overweight or not, it’s not the issue. The issue is that our kids are getting messages that aren’t going to be serving them. And the message is that it’s okay to feel bad about yourself. It’s okay to talk down about yourself, another thing that women do. And I talked about this in Sexy Witch as well, is that we bond through self-deprecation. “Oh my God! You look so hot!” “You take such good care of yourself.”, “You look so good.”.
“I’m such a lazy ass”. Whatever it is, you know. And we do that because of cultural context. And it was in our culture, not so long ago, that men had money and women had sex. And that was the trade that was going on, you know. Women had sex and reproduction. And so, how women got supported was by being sexy and reproducing. Right? And women couldn’t own their own property. I mean, this wasn’t so long ago. And so the sort of duck-and-cower technique to creating female fealty, it’s totally understandable.
…about why that’s there. I mean, it’s a vestage, but it’s still accurate. So much of self-esteem, and self-worth is still based in that arena for women. And so, for us to say, “Oh! You’re so much hotter than I am!”, and just take it out of the discussion, is…, you know…, could be seen as a positive. It’s not though. When we think about what it is, we’re modeling, dismissive, putting down, feeling bad as a bonding structure. I mean, think of how powerful if, we could enter into our female relationships from a place of power and glory. (LAUGHS)

Beth Crittenden: So, we’re going to wrap up now. But what are practices that you recommend for women who want to replace the patterns of self-deprecation and body negativity? How do you recommend, women kind of step up to their plate, own their sex, be role models for their children?

LaSara Firefox: There are so many…, so many things. But I’m going to offer just two simple exercises. And the first one that I’m going to offer…, and this is in Sexy Witch as well. They should work Sexy Witch, by the way. They should work that as a starting point to give them a good headstart to knowing, sort of, what their material is, and starting to rebuild. But, one of the exercises that I’m going to offer here, is a media fast. So, 5 days, 7 days, 10 days, a month…, whatever you can do to not taking in any media whatever. No newspapers, no magazine, no movies, no television…, no books. Just freeing yourself of media, and cultural archetypes. And allowing yourself to watch the process of purification that occours, as you start noticing how much…, because it is. It’s like fasting with food, where your body starts detoxing. Your mind does the same thing. It goes, “Oh, my God! Who knew all that was in there!”  ‘Cause you’ll start watching it come up. So, journal and keep track if you want. But just be free of media for an established amount of time. Oh, no Internet, either! As much as you can possibly do. Stay away from media influences for as long as you can, and just allow yourself to cleanse.
And the second thing that I’m going to offer, and this relates to everything that we’ve talked about today, is sitting meditation. So, allowing ourselves to take that sort of, detox process…, metaphysical, spiritual, psychic detox, to an even more pronounced level.
Sitting meditation…, start with 3 minutes a day. Start with 5 minutes a day, it doesn’t matter. Start with something easy and move your way up. But allow yourself to get calm and centered and quiet, and start to allow the process of who you are to unravel. And you’ll find something else on the other side.

Beth Crittenden: LaSara Firefox…, thank you so much for being with us today. And again, as a reminder, you can check out her books, and workshops, and ritual information at www.Lasara.us

LaSara Firefox: Lasara. You got it. Thank you so much, Beth.

Beth Crittenden: Thank you. For text and transcripts of this show, you can visit www.personallifemedia.com. You can also send us feedback or questions, at [email protected], by email. To learn more about One Taste and the practice of orgasmic meditation, you can visit www.Onetastesf. We encourage you to do your part to weave orgasm into the world conversation.

Announcer: Find more great shows, like this, on www.PersonalLifeMedia.com.