Who Mourns for Adonais?

Do you want to know a secret about power? One that no one really tells you? It's a choice and decision to give a person, an idea or a social movement power and decide to serve it.  It's not some kind of magic tonic that you drink that makes someone, something or an idea powerful, or gives you the desire to serve. It's always your choice to see someone or something as powerful and decide to worship . The offer to worship someone (or an idea) like a God can be given and then taken away. A King or a Queen needs a court in order to rule. Without a court, the crown is worthless.

If we don't believe that we all have to be thin, then we stop worshiping thin and an entire industry goes away. Are you following along? What we choose to make powerful becomes powerful and can hold all the cards. This can be wonderful and this can also run us into the ground. It's a choice.

In a 1968  second season episode of Star Trek, we can see this all played out in "Who Mourns for Adonais?"

In this episode, the crew of the Enterprise are held captive by an alien who turns out to be the Greek god Apollo.  At first, there is a power exchange, and the crew wants to be held like children and cared for by Apollo. There is some kind of short lived consensual agreement of sorts...and then the crew withdraws and Apollo's power shrinks and shrinks and shrinks until he is lifted away by the other Gods - completely drained of his power. He needs people to worship him to fully express his God Powers. Without the adoration of humans, he faded away.

This can happen in human relationships too and even with ideas and emotions such as shame or guilt.

What are YOU making powerful in your life?

If we give power to the idea that we can only be seen as sexy and beautiful if we look a certain way - we have made a social idea very powerful and run around worshiping it. We give our power away to all kinds of ways - often not realizing how powerful our surrender is to the entire process!

Some of us give our power away to lovers, institutions, religions, money, fashion, family, children, parents, bosses, and even food. And giving up power, and offering surrender to any of these things may be the most incredible experience of your life. I just think it's important to take a look every once in a while and consider if your power exchange is running you somewhere that is not serving you.

That is what revolution is all about it. It's the taking back of people's personal power and reducing the others god life grip. And we can have a personal revolution even about taking back the power of who give us orgasm! Do you control it or does someone else?

Remember: People, ideas and movements  become powerful because we make them powerful. We all have that power, and it's about where we choose to give our attention.

When we remove the idea of a person's God like powers over us, their power can shrink in our eyes until they simple become mortal and sometimes even disappear (like a relationship with an abuser).

The same goes for self hatred, stories of our past, ideas and social norms.

So to whom or what idea are you giving your power to? Is it a fair energy exchange? Are you getting what you need out of surrendering to a person or an idea?

Who and what are you making powerful and "god like" in your life?  And is that power exchange supporting you?

It's a different point of view isn't it?

I invite you to take a look!

Loving you from here,




Mothers and Daughters: Sexuality and 'The Mother Wound'

Daughters complain a lot about their mothers. And mothers can talk endlessly about their difficulties with their daughters.  Much has been written about "The Mother Wound" which is this idea that collective generational pain is passed down from mother's to daughters. For daughters it can feel like we will never be quite right for our mothers. This feeling that we will never totally win our mother's complete approval. We are too fat or thin. Not feminine enough or showing too much skin. This feeling that our mother is always comparing us to someone elses daughter or even our sister, who has a better job or does more for their mother. It can be about our parenting, our dress code and most of all—this unspoken shame around our sexuality.

Many daughters feel that they have to remain sexually small because how dare they want to have more sexual freedom and pleasure than their mothers had.  Or maybe their mother's were sexually or emotionally abused—and there is this fear that if the daughter is sexually alive the same fate will befall her. The daughter may not even know this on a conscious level, but somewhere deep inside, she knows that she cannot explore who she is on a sexual level because it will trigger her mother's fear and disapproval.

In my sexuality and intimacy coaching practice and at my retreats, "The Mother Wound" has been one of the prevalent issues that lay right under the surface for so many women.

They keep themselves sexually small because they don't want to threaten other women or call too much attention to themselves. There is this fear that "something bad will happen to them" that they will not be able to control. Or worse - that they will be blamed. They compete endlessly with other women and have this feeling that they cannot trust other women.

After all, some feel that they couldn't they trust their mother to protect them or see them as they truly were/are.

They have this secret fear that they are broken in some way and not worthy of creating what they really want in their lives. There is this fear around shaking things up too much. Women talk to me about attracting men into their lives that step all over their boundaries or are "safe and uninteresting". When asked about their desires, there is only this vague sense of unrest.

Many who struggle with their 'mother wound' take incredible leaps forward in exploring their sexuality and then self-sabotage by dropping out with excuses that range from money and time to feeling that they have gotten all that they need. Mostly they are frightened "of going too far and falling off a rail". The fear of anyone finding out that they are exploring their sexuality is extraordinary. No one wants to be a "bad girl" for real. So instead, many women develop anxiety, eating disorders, depression, addictions and complain of a general feeling of numbness in their genitals that we call "Low sexual desire" or "Low Libido".

So many of our mothers were raised in service to others rather than ever thinking about their own needs. They have their own mother wounds. It's important to remember that our mothers are someone else's daughter. She may have all of the same feelings that I just described above.

How is she suppose to teach and support her daughter to be anything other than filled with these same feelings of shame and comparison? This is a legacy that is carefully protected, shrouded in fear, shame and conflict. As daughters so many of us want our mother's approval; and if that means remaining small so that we do not challenge our mother's belief's about being a woman we will do that.

For many daughters that means shutting down their sexuality instead of taking on her own sexual power and potential. The risk of rejection and shaming is far too big a fear. I wonder if that is why so many women wait until mid life to sexually awaken. By then we are far enough out of the house, have accumulated  enough life experiences of our own, and we may have lost our mother through death or conflict.

Many of us develop a late life compassion for our mothers and a deeper understanding of our mother as daughter. That she is/was a product of the same legacy. We begin to  know at a deeper level in mid life that we will not lose our mother's approval or love—or if we do we are strong enough to walk away from the legacy.

While it may still feel risky for a woman to step forward and decide to connect to her body, her sexuality and a practice of self loving and pleasure out of a fear of risking angering and rejection from her mother—somehow in mid life we seem to be gathering the fortitude. As daughter's age, many of us come to this awareness that while our mother's may have given up parts of herself to her own mother—we no longer have to. We can break the cycle. This does not mean that we deny the legacy—it actually means that we take it on and look at it. Often there is grieving to be done.

In order to fully get into our bodies and let go of the fear of our own sexuality—it is vital to look at our own mother wounds as they are the foundation on which our relationship to our sexuality and our bodies are built.

As daughters we cannot repair or save our mothers lives. But we can choose to offer ourselves and our mothers compassion. We can offer our mother's and ourselves understanding and forgiveness. And we can step away and fulfill our own potential as women without this underlying fear that our relationship with our own pleasure and sexual expression is something dangerous and an act of defiance against our mother. We can step into our discomfort of "leaving our mother's behind" or even perhaps feeling their envy as we live lives that they were unable to have. In mid life many of us feel the disappointment that our mother's have in their own self sacrifice and the hunger for what they didn't have. Perhaps it is this maturity and ability to see what our mother's have held in their own lives that creates this burning mid life desire not to forever limit our own true potential. In mid life - it can feel like now or never. It is finally time to become all of those things that we repressed in fear of hurting, angering or betraying the sacrifices that our mother's made for us.

It becomes time to love our bodies as they are. It becomes time to be as big, creative, successful and  smart as we can. This can be a remarkable time of rebirth and recreation in a woman's life. We want our own experience of being a woman, and this reaching for our full potential is not about abandoning our mothers. It is about finally realizing that we will never be able to fully pay our mother's back for what they gave us—or letting go of the deeply held desire to win this approval and love. It is the final falling out of the nest.

And as a mother who is a daughter we have work to do too.  Being a mother is one of the hardest roles we will ever occupy. Occupying motherhood in our world is a job that no one can prepare you for. And it sets you up for all the old feelings of being a daughter like being competitive with other women—only this time it's about your kids plus all the other stuff that you were carrying before. It's hard to confront all of the "Mother" feelings when we think we are enlightened. This is not "old world" feelings. This is a legacy. In our own role of mother/daughter, we may be trying to take back our own sexual power while we are seeing our children out pace us. It can be terrifying to feel fear for our daughters while we envy them.

"The Mother Wound" is one of the most complex obstacles women face, and it's the leading cause of women staying small. As women we may have a tremendous amount of anger for the boxes that we are put into and the sacrifices that we make as mothers. Where can we talk about feeling left out in our daughters lives? Hating being the one that has to be the constant giver and nurturer? Who can we speak to without shame that we are tired of being in service to our daughter's whims, desires, anger and resentments?

There are few safe places to bring this rage and confusion. While there are a few advocates working hard to provide those safe places like Nekole Shapiro and her Holistic Peer Counseling Program for Birth and Parenting—these programs are rare and new.

It's time for all of us to take a look at the mother wound. How it has affected us as mothers,  daughters and ultimately as women. It's time for us to peek at how the mother wound has affected our relationship with our bodies and our sexuality. It would be wonderful if young women could do this—and it's not too late ever for any woman of any age to do this work and have this transformation.

I have seen women in their fifties, sixties and seventies heal their wounds and take back their bodies with extraordinary pleasure. I have watched them experience their sexuality in ways that they felt were completely out of the range of possibility for them. I have been inspired by women who have left the regret and the legacy behind them. It is a stepping out and letting go of the internal monologue of 'mother wound' self criticism, guilt, shame,  fear, and obligation that robs us from our full potential.

This wound can be healed and women can have lives that are full of love, self acceptance and sexual expression. I see it happening everyday.


What to do after reading this article?

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You Are Half Water

I have always had this thing about water. Perhaps it is the Tantra metaphors about the feminine and the masculine that got me. The feminine is often described as "a river" and the masculine "the banks". I really got that. I was the wild river flowing, and I always felt like my feminine was in full force when it was held and contained by strong banks. I like to say that if the banks weren't strong when my river was rising - that the water would flood small villages and hurt unsuspecting people. I felt like I needed that - and I noticed that when my energy was flowing and contained that my creativity went way up. I was happier. But if I'm dependent on the banks (the masculine) as an outside force (not a part of myself that I learned to source),  and the banks are not showing up - life can get pretty tricky for a river. I just came across this passage from author Margaret Atwood and this is what she has to say about water:

“Water does not resist. Water flows. When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress. Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you. But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it. Water is patient. Dripping water wears away a stone. Remember that, my child. Remember you are half water. If you can't go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does.”

I love this passage. What a different perspective than the one that I had been holding about water.

I think I like this one better. And the banks? I still like them. But we all have an inner feminine and masculine in our own bodies. Lately, I have be resourcing my own banks a bit more. And the creativity has been flowing because it's true what Margaret says about water - it's patient and nothing in the end will stop water from where it wants to go. And water can do this without resistance - just by flowing.

So what is stopping your flow? What is your story about it?

You are half water. If there's an obstacle go around it.

Loving you from here,


Are You in An Addictive Relationship With Yourself?

When therapists and coaches talk about "addictive relationships", they are usually talking about a relationship with another human being.  But have you ever considered that you could be in an "Addictive Relationship" with yourself? An addictive relationship is basically one that causes you pain, embodies a love/hate dynamic, and is frequently blown apart by drama, conflicts, and dissatisfaction.

It's called an addiction because even though you may be aware of how dysfunctional and destructive the relationship is, you keep doing the same thing over and over again. You keep participating in the conflict and the dynamics.

I think that way more of us are in destructive addictive relationships with ourselves then with other people.

Five Symptoms That You Are In an Addictive Relationship With Yourself:

1. You Talk Body Shame All The Time: You are never happy with your appearance. Whether it is your weight, your style, or your various body parts.

2. You are sure that you are not worthy of love. That there will never be the right partner out there for you because you are simply not enough. And you stick with a relationship that you know deep in your heart is not right for you, because you think that it can't get any better. After all, aren't you lucky that you "landed" this relationship at all?

3. You have repetitive negative thoughts about other women, and always feel like you need to compete or be better than they are.

4. You feel disconnected to your own sexuality while you have repetitive thoughts about how you "think" things could be better. You stay stuck in the constant thinking - but you never try anything new.

5. You are always reading self help articles and books looking for an answer to your own pain, but never seem to find it.

The only way out of this destructive, addictive cycle with yourself is to change your behaviors and take a good strong look in the mirror. I mean it. Go look in the mirror and ask yourself these questions.

Questions to Ask Yourself When Seeking to End an Addictive Relationship With Yourself:

1. What are you willing to put up with? Would you hang out with a friend that treats you and speaks to you the way you are treating yourself?

2. Can you name the ways in which you are abusive to yourself?

3. Do you pretend that you are not hurting yourself so that you don't have to change?

4. Can you entertain the possibility that you could love yourself right now - just as you are. Could you possibly believe that change can only come from a place of self love and allowing yourself pleasure? Can you name how you love yourself now?Your relationship with yourself reflects the best of who you are, and what you can get out of life.Take a good hard look. Are you in a destruction addictive relationship with yourself? Ignoring it won't make it go away. Pretending that you are not in an addictive cycle of self hate talk will not create the pleasure in your life and fulfillment that most of us seek.Instead you may find yourself stuck in anger, anxiety, depression, low libido and sometimes isolation.

You are the one who is stopping yourself from making changes that will improve your life, your options, your reactions and ultimately your future and every present moment in your life. How do you move out of this cycle?

1. Acknowledge the clearest truth about what you are feeling, what you are thinking, and what you want.

2. Stop worrying about what others might think about your feelings. Stop judging. Try accepting where you are right now and then decide what action you want to take next.

3. Acknowledge your own uniqueness. You have your own way of being. Your own views and opinions. You walk in the world your own way. See yourself with your own loving eyes - not through the eyes of others.

4. Write down how you would like to express yourself in your own greatness.

5. Take the next step. Make the choices and take actions that reflect who you know yourself to really be. Do not treat yourself with anything less than you deserve and don't let others as well.

Ultimately, it's really up to you. If you are addicted to emotional anguish, and never getting what you want - you can stay right where you are. But there is a world full of beauty, support, adventure and pleasure. You have to choose it.

You need to find the courage to not only move towards that reality, but to stay with it once you put your big toe in it. This may mean moving out of your comfort zone and staying there for a while. The familiar is comfortable even if it is painful. It's yours after all. You know it well.

Only you can choose to give up this tired old addictive relationship with yourself and the pain that can come with it. Are you ready?

Loving you from here,


PS. I would love to help. I am offering a "Letting Go of Addictive Self Hatred and Creating a Pleasure Plan" Package. Curious? Email me at Pamela@BacktoTheBody.com and put "Time For Change" in the subject line. What could be a better plan for 2014?