Sexological Body Work

200 Shameless Women Share About Sexological Body Work

Sometimes, it feels like I am leading a movement. It's about women reclaiming their bodies or perhaps even finding their bodies for the first time through non judgmental full body touch. I have worked side by side with "Sexological Body Workers", "Somatic Sex Educators, or "Hands on Sex Therapists/Practitioners for over ten years now, and through Back to The Body for close to three years since the publication of my book; "Shameless: How I Ditched The Diet, Got Naked, Found True Pleasure and Somehow Got Home in Time to Cook Dinner" (Rodale 2011).   Since that time, over 200 women has passed through me whether it has been through coaching, private retreats, or Back to The Body: Sensuous Retreats for Women.  I have held their hands, processed their experiences with them before and after their hands on sessions, and I have kept in contact with many long after they have moved onto other things.

I knew when I shared my story that I was sharing something big for women.  I knew that when we learn through pleasure, that big things can change in our lives. How we feel about our bodies, our relationship with food, addiction,  our interpersonal relationships, and our potential in the world. I knew, because  I did it. And what I am finding out by supporting other women to do this work over the past three years in a very intensive way, is that it is the same for most of them too.  And I want to share our lessons from the massage table. I want to share, because I want to inspire our women too. Our arousal is our internal pharmacy and we can access it through touch.

Lessons Learned:

1. Being held in complete attention and presence from another being while being naked and receiving touch was perhaps the most healing aspect of this experience for almost all of the women.  Somehow, we don't get that in our "regular" lives.  I can't explain why women don't feel totally seen by lovers and husbands, but when a practitioner is totally focused on you for 90 minutes (or for as long as you create your session), and you do not have to be focused on your partner, lover, husband - it creates a space for you to simply receive attention - and that has created huge healing opportunities for almost every woman I have spoken to.

2. Learning to love our bodies through the pleasure of touch. As one woman put it recently, "When he put his hand on my thigh and I experienced my thigh as being full of pleasure instead of fat and ugly - it was a huge relief." When we are able to feel our bodies in pleasure instead of judgement it can create a change in how we see and feel our own bodies. Women with eating disorders have found incredible healing in their body distortion issues by closing their eyes and simply feeling their bodies through touch.

3. Women have reported their first orgasms and feelings of arousal for the first time. Many women can't ask for what they want erotically because they don't know what is possible. By working with someone that is educated in touching a woman's body, women are learning what feels good to them. They simply don't know what they don't know! And once they do know, they are able to bring that learning back into their lives and to their lovers.

4. Women have reported that doing this work has helped them understand their desires and their own personal boundaries in a new way. With coaching and hands on work, they are becoming stronger and more able to speak their desires, and their own boundaries. This shift has rocked open their worlds.

5. Woman have reported a tremendous expansion in what they see has possible in their own lives on every level after spending time doing somatic sex therapy. They have reported feeling more courageous, self confident and willing to take risks when it comes to their jobs and even creating more financial abundance.

6. Women have reported that they finally understand how to open, and surrender to touch and to their own hearts. On the table women are able to practice vulnerability and being open in a safe way - where there is no judgement and where they know they will be held. The experience of finally letting go can change them forever.

And here is what is true. Very few women get what they want in a single session. In a single session most of the women can see what is possible. But what I tell women is to give us a year. Start the dialog with your own body, and stay with it for one year - and see what happens.  Time on the table is a practice.

It can take a season for a bulb to grow a stem, then a bud. The bud can often open over a few days. You need to be patient for the gorgeous flower.

How many metaphors do you want? If you are able to stay with this practice and allow yourself to go through the shifts and change that this work can bring you - I believe that you will find yourself transformed.

Time and time again, I have seen it. Time and time again for ten years I have been climbing on the table to do my own work. I am still peeling back the onion of my own transformation. I am filled with awe in what is possible through touch. I wish that more people knew about this.

The good news is: Our tribe is growing.

A Peek Inside a Private Sexological Body Work Session

This morning, my client "Amy" met me for coffee and to check in before her final session Sexological Body Work session with my colleague Ron Stewart, Co-Founder of Back to the Body: Sensuous Retreats for Women, before she flew back to Florida. She read me her journal entries, and I was not only blown away by her sharing, but how amazing she looked. I asked her how she was feeling, and she said: "Whole, Satiated, Centered and at Peace". Ron and I have been in the NYC area running workshops and working privately with women, men and couples who are on their own journey back to their bodies.  Amy is one of the women who flew in from various parts of the country to work with us. I would describe her as lovely, fiercely independent, and in her forties. She is single and in transition in her relationship.

I got to know Amy after she decided to do one on one coaching with me through video skype. When the opportunity presented itself to do hands on work, she took the plunge and jumped in. She choose to do three sessions with us over three days. That meant that she got an hour with me to talk about it all, process, and then spend time with Ron having a traditional Sexological Body Work Session. We also shared a few meals together, and did a little sex toy shopping.

With her permission, here are a few excerpts from her journal and a follow up coaching session with me. Amy allowed me to share all of this because she wanted to support other women to take the leap, and change their lives.

"So I traveled to NYC today to start this mini-retreat to explore my sexuality. There is a part of me that thinks this is crazy and wondering what I’m doing. And although I’m a bit excited I can’t lie and say that I’m not having second thoughts right now. As it nears the time and VERY nervous and a bit anxious but I know that this is about me and being open to the experience so I go with it.

Meeting with Pam was good, centered me a bit before meeting with Ron and going into the hands on portion of my time. I’m guessing it’s because I’ve had massages before but I’m amazed at how easily I strip before Ron and get on the table.

The experience is amazing, Ron was really good at reading my body. He started with an extended massage which was perfect. I got comfortable with his touch and the idea of what we’re doing. I had my first orgasm and it was amazing. I experienced sensations I had never felt before and it was pretty spectacular. I told Pam and Ron that this was the first time I wasn’t self conscious about my body, perhaps it was because there is no relationship between Ron and I - not sure but it definitely allowed me to let go. I am hoping that I can carry that level of self confidence in my other sexual experiences.

I am glad that I came.

Session Two

Today’s experience was intense… I had shared that I was interested in playing a little bit with Domination so I got to experience a taste of that! I enjoyed it! Spanking (which I also really loved), anal play (WOW!)… and a lot more g-spot stimulation than yesterday. I think I had an orgasm for like an hour… there was an extended period of time where my body just shook. It felt like the urge to shudder was coming from the inside out and I felt it down to my toes. It was amazing… it was ALMOST too much - so hard to put into words. I have never experienced anything like that before.

At the end of the session Ron remarked on how responsive my body was, and I honestly didn’t know that I was responsive. Past experiences felt good but not body shattering, it was like there was a string from my nipples to my pussy and every time they were touched everything would clench. It was really surprising to me at how much I enjoyed everything, the last little bit of time all I could do was lay there and experience my pussy clenching and my nipples peaking… just amazing.

At first I thought I would just lay down and sleep for the afternoon but all of a sudden I’m ravenous and I have a ton of energy so I’m going to go outside and explore for a bit. :) Tonight is one of the workshops. I’m hoping that it will be a good experience.

Update - after a quick trip sightseeing I came back to the hotel and was knocked out, I slept for five or six hours straight. I guess this experience impacted me even more than I thought! And I guess, I found the cure for my insomnia! Something has definitely changed though… even while I was walking around today I noticed that my hips are swinging and my confidence has grown. Amazing what an orgasm can do!

Love."

Day 3 "I was curious about how today would turn out.  Yesterday was intense it was a life changing experience for me and last night and this morning I feel that delicious soreness of a body that was well used.  I woke up this morning feeling happy, I would even venture to say that I feel joyful.  I feel like I ‘fit’ in my own skin.  I shower, do my hair throw on my tightest skinny jeans, a sweater, leather jacket and almost knee high boots and I feel sexy.  It’s been a LONG time since I’ve felt this way.  I leave my hotel room to meet Pam with a smile on my face and she gives me one look and starts laughing… she says you look so happy and so pretty and I really feel it! :)

I was a bit nervous about today because I was so sore (my body simply wasn't used to all of this touch!) but Ron and I agree to start off slow and see how things go from there… after a bit Ron read my mind and brought out the Magic Wand… well there went my plan… I was soon begging for more.  Today was such a different experience from yesterday but another amazing one.  I had no idea my body was so responsive, I had no idea I could feel so deeply or intensely.  I had no idea that I could feel such pleasure where everything was centered on my breasts and my pussy to the extent that I felt pins and needles in my toes and my fingers.  How amazing is that?!  Coming out of today’s session I feel like I could run a 5k, my body feels alive, whole, centered and most importantly satiated.  Walking around on the streets of New York people are looking at me because I literally have a smile on my face.  It almost brings me to tears to know that I’m NOT broken, that I am a whole and complete woman who is just now scratching the surface in finding herself.

Pam and I have lunch and then walk to a nearby jewelry store.  I buy a beautiful piece of body jewelry… BODY JEWELRY!?  I mean so NOT like me, but putting it on I felt sexy and it’s a perfect tribute to this mini-retreat weekend.

Pam and I talked about my experience and about my decision to chose her to work with.  I told her that talking with her I felt heard, I felt validated and I felt she wouldn’t take any of my crap and I was right.  She pushed me in the right way and has helped me to start this amazing journey to find my sexuality, to understand my body and what it needs and to find myself.  I plan on attending the workshop tonight and hope to have more to tell of my story of Day 3.  In the meantime I owe so much to Pam and Ron for helping me to start this journey to finding myself."

Day 4 Heading Home

"I'm heading to JFK airport now and as I was getting ready this morning I was thinking about what I learned this weekend. 1. I learned that I'm not broken, in fact my body is extremely responsive to erotic touch. Who knew?! 2. I learned that I'm sexy and powerful in my skin. This one will take some time to get used to being comfortable with but I experienced it so I know it's there! 3. I learned that taking time for me is not selfish, it increases my capacity for love - both of myself and of others. 4. I learned that I am beautiful. 5. I learned that there is immense pleasure in being able to receive touch and equally as much pleasure being able to give touch. 6. I learned that there are men out there who are equally concerned with giving pleasure as they are receiving it.

This was an amazing discovery and I know that it is just the start of my journey. The question is really what do I do with this knowledge know and how does it change my current circumstances? Although I felt true and loving feelings for Chris is he the one for me? This morning, after some processing my instinct was no. But I know that I need to spend some time talking with him to be sure. I feel confident enough now that I can do that.

I can't thank Pam and Ron enough for this weekend. For opening my eyes and my body to my potential and for starting me on this journey to my own self discovery and wholeness. Next stop Tuscany! (I hope!)

Love."

And I can't thank Amy enough for showing up so fully and then allowing us to take a peek!

The Place Where Sexy Flows

Lately, the gift of vulnerability and body image has been on my mind. I have just returned from coaching the newest class of Somatic Sex Educators to reach for certification.  I was there to  support their learning, but as it is with all things - I learned a great deal from them. In fact, I would go so far as to say that the experience cracked my heart wide open.  It was one of the most vulnerable experiences of my life, and it opened up a brand new place of creation for me. There is a physical and  spiritual liberation and power that happens through vulnerability. I was reminded of that this morning from one of the members of my Shameless Community in her blog. It was a great reminder. What I have discovered, is that I am not truly living and not in my power  if I don't open to the power of my own vulnerability. If you have never heard Brene Brown talk on "The Power of Vulnerability",  do it today! And if you have heard her, please listen again. It's that good and that's important. It is truly our work.

It's the place from where  sexy flows.

And my sexy has never been more in the flow. What is that about? Lately, what has been put in my face is what people are saying about me. How my physical appearance has been changing. The shape of my body. The softness of my demeanor. How my secret weapon is my big generous heart. My openness. And it has been a lot of that...holding all of how people are seeing me. And some of it, I don't love either. Folks wanting me to be smaller. Take up less air time. Jealous feelings. But they are all sacred mirrors. Right? It is beautiful and overwhelming. What was I before? Am I really so different or are they just seeing me in a new way? What about me has changed to allow others to see who I am, or am I really any of it at all?  It makes me feel vulnerable. And then it occurred to me that I always feel vulnerable, and if I am not feeling vulnerable about something - I tend to go find something to feel vulnerable about! The lack of vulnerability, the lack of a low undercurrent of anxiety in my life is usually an indicator that I am not living to my fullest.

And that apparently is a great big key for living an incredible full and connected life. Being willing to be vulnerable. And I truly believe that this starts with our relationship with our body and our sexuality. Being willing to go deep and be vulnerable with ourselves in ways that you may never have imagined is possible. That has been my secret to living life as a turned on woman. And I want to share it with you. I want to invite you into being vulnerable and letting the sexy flow in your own life and it is never too early or too late to move your feet in the direction of your heart and begin to open more to  vulnerability.  That is my secret weapon.  According to researcher, Brene Brown, " Vulnerability is the birthplace of joy, creativity, and love and whole heartedness".  When you can be brave enough to lean into this place  I truly believe that you will open to an entirely new level of  creativity and sexiness in your life.  I have gotten in my heart of hearts, that it is my openness to this that makes me truly beautiful - not my ass, or my tits. Vulnerable is what makes you beautiful. The hard part is recognizing where your fear is. And once you do, putting your feet in that direction. It's not always comfortable, but the results are incredible.

Sometimes it is just about being willing to learn into your fear, and not know if what you are doing is going to work out.  It's about not always knowing the script.  So here comes my invitation to you! Are you ready to go where the sexy flows inside of you?  Are you willing to be open to being vulnerable and have a completely new and extraordinary experience?   I hope so! It will forever change your life. It will bring you up close, and lovingly in the place of vulnerability and transformation.

"Back to The Body: A Sensuous Retreat For Women"

Back to the Body is a unique offering created for women to come together and immerse themselves in the pleasure of their own sensuality in a safe structured environment. More than a circle, this is a retreat that has been created to allow you to connect to your own Inner Goddess in the loving presence of women on a similar journey.

Come be held in Her arms, experience the full sensual possibilities that are present in your glorious body.  Ride the waves of pleasure deep into the mysteries of the feminine.  Dance in your own desire and play in the full expression of your sexuality. This retreat is limited to six women, and will be facilitated by renowned sex, love and intimacy coaches Pamela Madsen (www.bengshameless.com),  and Ron Stewart (http://www.skycladyoga.com) as well as another Sexological Body Worker on our team.

Is it time to reclaim, go deeper or celebrate your body? Join us.

A Taste of What You Can Expect:

  • Daily Hands on Taoist Sensuous Body Work Provided By Will Fredericks and Ron Stewart, Certified Sexological Bodyworkers
  • Additional sessions of one on one touch on various areas of your body such as pelvic floor release, scar tissue remediation,  or breast massage
  • Spa services including mani/pedi and facials
  • Organic Cooking and  Tantric Dining Experiences
  • Ritual Sensual Bathing Experience
  • Hands on workshops and daily practice with yoga, movement, meditation and dance
  • Opportunities to be silly, laugh and play
  • Group discussions on body image, orgasm, sexuality, speaking desire, understanding boundaries and how to open to more pleasure in our daily lives.
  • Surprise Events!
  • Fun Goody Bag (and I do mean FUN)

All participants will receive one additional coaching session with Pamela after the retreat completes.

This retreat is being held on a property known as Deer Leap. This place is a true sanctuary which will allow you to completely release yourself from daily obligations so that you may fully engage with your own present self, and nourish your body, mind and spirit. To fully immerse yourself in your Back to The Body  journey, consider this space a getaway in our beautifully furnished suite.

The living area is a 800 square-foot studio apartment which boasts vaulted ceilings, a wood burning stove, eclectic furnishings, private deck, and laundry services. This cozy yet spacious suite sleeps  6 people. We are going to have a fabulous sexy pajama party under it's cozy and restful roof.

The well-equipped kitchen and rustic dining table will show case our amazing organic and communal meal which will sometimes feel like intimate dinners and at other times feel like sumptuous feasts!

The suite has Internet access and TV with DVD player, sound system with iPod connection. The studio/spa is connected to our suite and we have two full bathrooms. The retreat also offers infrared sauna, and a large soaking tub where we will have our bath ritual.

The property is called Deer Leap which celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2014. A beautiful and majestic reminder of life in simpler times. The suite is located on a seven acre private landscape of trees, mountains and a hike up the hill will be rewarded with views of the ocean.

Originally built as a summer house for a shipping family, Deer Leap has passed through many ages and incarnations and now rests peacefully once more as a gracious home for a thriving family. Our hope is that your time at Deer Leep will welcome in the processes of healing and transformation that will take place through practices of sensuous massage, body scrubs, infrared sauna, dance, yoga, intimate conversations, and a spirit of play.

The Back to The Body Retreat is the event that will take place as you leave the city and arrive in this quiet part of the world surrounded by natural beauty.

Important Details:

Dates: July 3rd through July 7th. Cost: $4,000 inclusive of lodgings, food, pick up and drop off at airports and ferries, all services and special events

If you would like to set up a time to chat about coming, please send me an email at Pamela@beingshameless.com. xoxo Pamela