How Do You Ask Permission To Flirt And To Have Sexual Freedom? | Facebook Walk With Reid

by Reid on July 24, 2020

How Do You Ask Permission To Flirt And To Have Sexual Freedom? | Facebook Walk With Reid





Reid: Hello Facebook it’s Reid Mihalko from and happy 4th of July! If you celebrate such things. I am doing a quick store run to get some beer for Allison Moon and myself and I’m walking at a tall ship I guess it’s kind of a mini tall ship, I mean it’s tall. Tall by my standards.

Where are you today? And what are you doing for 4th of July if you’re celebrating? Allison and I might…..might barbecue some salmon burgers, we’re definitely going to drink some beer. I took the first six months off, I’d say that last year and I did this year with drinking no alcohol I got a….I had a coffee and bailey’s on my birthday but…..but it’s been six months with no booze and it’s July now so I’m….I’m drinking for 4th of July and have a couple of beers and so we’re looking at beers today and I wanted to talk about sexual freedom since it’s 4th of July and I was doing some writing for a project and a special sex education and relationship app that I’ve been brought on to help with and one of the things I was talking about this morning or not talking about but writing about with some tips on flirting and it occurred to me that the idea I have I have a radical idea about flirting which is you should ask people “may I flirt with you?” And get them to say you know and…..and you know wait until they say “yes or no” before you start flirting with somebody and I’ve had some people be like “Reid, like that’s kind of radical like these, aren’t actually work and the answer is I mean it doesn’t work all of the time. There are times when people say no but then when people say no I just say thank you for taking care of yourself and I don’t flirt with them but the asking people “may I flirt with you?” Does some nerdy things I think are really important and I just want to share with them because I think this approach, your mileage may vary you can go check it you know you can go test-drive it but I think this approach is or at least for me as a you know dude and as a as a white dude who walks in a lot of different communities and the….and also you know the caveat being like I’m an extrovert but the…..the asking people for permission which is kind of a thing from cuddle party you know before you touch anyone, ask permission and get a verbal yes.

This really subtle thing about consent and consent culture when applied to flirting is really interesting and I think it does a couple of things really quickly that people don’t really notice but I think people feel and then when you try to explain it to people it just seems silly but it’s actually really powerful. One of those things when you start kind of deconstructing social awkwardness and why people don’t flirt, one of the reasons people are hesitant to flirt is we are raised to think that nobody can control themselves. We’re taught a lot of us, I have to speak for Americans we’re taught that once we start turning into adolescence that teenagers can’t control themselves and…and that you know we can’t control our sexual impulses and so what you do is you try not to get people turned on because once you start getting people turned on, you know no one can stop and what’s problematic about that is the way we talk about turn-on and arousal, we don’t tell people “oh, yeah, yeah, yeah like when you’re a teenager you won’t be able to stop but when you’re an adult you can totally control yourself.” Like we just don’t talk about control and we…we build up sexuality to be so powerful and overwhelming that no one can control themselves and we could debate whether teenagers or kids can control themselves because they don’t have a fully formed prefrontal cortex, they have you know very erratic impulse control and that adults you know when you’re past 22, 23, 24 you have a fully formed prefrontal cortex most of us and you do have some impulse control but when we’re not talking about sex and open communication and there’s all the shames…..shame and negativity even if you had impulse control. If no one’s taught you how to navigate sex powerfully, it’s really windy. We try….I’m going to stand right behind this tree maybe this will help. If you’re not taught how to navigate and talk about sex powerfully, what ends up happening is even when you have impulse control you’re just clumsy and clunky as fuck and you can’t….you’re not a good communicator and if everybody else isn’t a good communicator, there’s all this miscommunication or non-communication happening around sex and sexuality and agendas and what you want and desire and so with bad communication things become really dangerous and in some cases it’s actually dangerous but things can feel really unsafe.

So, my little my little 4th of July sexual freedom rant right now is this idea of, if you become really good at communicating and you check in with people before you do anything in a world where nobody’s checking in or people are checking in poorly, people aren’t actually asking for what they want and people are assuming or trying to read minds while doing things. When you’re somebody who asks and waits for somebody to say yes or no before you do anything, you have started creating a safer space….then most people are experiencing on a moment-by-moment day-to-day basis and me going up to you on something as innocuous as flirting and saying “hey, may I flirt with you?” Is one, telling you what I would like to do. So we take the guesswork out of it like you don’t have to figure out “is he flirting with me? Is he not flirting with me?” Because I have actually come up to you and said “may I flirt with you, yes or no?” If you say yes then I will I will continue or I will begin the flirting. Whatever that needs to look like.

My doofus definition of flirting is anytime you’re being playful with a human being and inviting them to be playful back. That’s….that’s my definition of flirting. It doesn’t have to be sexual, it doesn’t have to be non-sexual, it just needs to be playful. So you can be you know you being playful with somebody, inviting them to be playful and….and welcoming them to be playful back is kind of like throwing the Frisbee of human connection back and forth and so you’re just having fun. So me asking you if you want to play Frisbee, if you want to play catch and waiting for you to say yes before I chuck the Frisbee at you, that can be really helpful because one I’ve given you choice, you get to opt-in so I’m not just whipping the Frisbee at you and forcing you to catch it or…or worse you didn’t figure out what was going on and the Frisbee just pings you off the head. I’ve taken the surprise out of it you might be surprised that I’m asking but because I haven’t started flirting yet and I’m waiting for you to begin you now can kind of adjust yourself to the situation and it was just kind of occurring to me like when you announce your agenda or your intention and your being…..which is basically a form of transparency and then you give people an opportunity to say yes or no and you know we talked about this in cuddle party which you know you can check out cuddle party if you don’t know what that is at That was something I co-created with Marcia Baczynski back in 2004 and that’s a workshop for non-sexual touch and intimacy that is being taught in several different languages in different countries and it’s [Inaudible 00:09:18] but I stepped away from cuddle party so that I could teach more explicit Sex Ed and not confuse people but the…the situation of when people say no, thank them for taking care of themselves because you want to encourage the people around you to continue to say no to things because when you when people can say no to you, you can actually trust their yes and the old-school version of flirting and….and sexual you know seduction is to you know if somebody says no I’m going to be all suave and convince you to change your mind which is kind a whippy kind of whippy.

Even if you have the you know romantic notions about being seduced, if you really want to seduce people then just ask them if they’d like to be seduced like you can negotiate that as like a “hey, I would like to seduce you. So if you’re up for that, am I kind to need you to play hard-to-get so that I can win you over.” Which sounds weird that you would be so explicit about it but the explicitness is creating a safety and by you announcing to the extent that you can you know because we don’t always know what we want but with your clarity and you using your words to give people an opportunity to say yes or no, not only you creating a safe space but you letting people know that you will let them know what it is you’re up to is actually a really powerful way of….of establishing that they can trust you because if I if I’m constantly telling you what it is I would like or what it is I’m up to like if I’m if I’m making transparent my agenda and giving you an opportunity to say yes or no and not pressuring you to say yes and I will respect your no, in the world of sexuality you now know you can trust me, you know I won’t do something without checking in first and making sure that you’re a yes. If I can drop in that it’s okay for us to change our mind so that if something doesn’t feel good in the moment you can say no or you can say you’d like to change it and I will honor that.

Those happen to be three really powerful ingredients to creating safe space and great sex. So these….these three things I think are really useful for, one for creating sexual freedom for yourself but also inviting people to be a part of that stepping into that space as well.

So that’s just my thoughts this morning from working on this app project and at some point, I’ll get permission to announce what the app is and I’ll let you know and what else? Yeah. So those, I just want to share that with you because I thought that was a kind of appropriate little….little theme for today talking about sexual freedom on 4th of July. If you’ve never heard of the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Alliance, I’ll put the link in the in the description but the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit is going to be coming up right after Sex Geek Summer Camp in Washington D.C area and if you’re interested in coming to Sex Geek Summer Camp which is a business retreat for sex educators and workshop facilitators, tantra teachers, healers things like that of an intimacy and relationship with  sexuality nature, then you can go I think we’re like 24, 23 days from camp so it’s coming up quick. Can’t….can’t wait to see all the sex geeks at camp and I have another stuff coming up in the fall. Other big announcements that I’ll start doing some Facebook lives about as well but happy 4th of July everybody!

Let me know what you’re doing for 4th of July and share your thoughts about what I just shared about you know asking people if they would like to flirt and sexual freedom and you know be safe today. Be careful if you’re going to be around fireworks and enjoy your friends and community and Happy 4th Day America! Bye!

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