“I hate sex.”
There was a time when I cried those three words over and over again before and after I did the deed.
There was a time when I thought that the pain in my vulva must’ve been all my fault. Some twisted consequence of my shameful secretive past.
There was a time when I couldn’t tell the difference between consensual dominating sex, and rape.
There was a time when I had no sense – at all – about what I liked in bed, and definitely no voice to say it.
There was a time when I had sexual experience after sexual experience that didn't quite match my soul, but the hunger for connection was so strong that I just kept going along with it.
There was a time when I thought all these things were 100% my fault. Even my active feminism couldn't explain away my sexual woes. And I had zero understanding of what trauma is, how it works, or how it transforms.
Sitting down to write this Kickstarter copy, I found myself asking, Do I really have to write this part of the story again? Do I really have to tell the gory, ugly, shameful, shitty parts?
Of course I do. Because they’re real. Because they’re what so many people secretly struggle with inside.
Without a guide. Without a map. With no understanding as to why (even though they’re trying so hard) they’re still chronically and exhaustingly stuck.
I call this chronic stuckness “the trauma spell”.
The way our reptilian physiology secretly hijacks our capacity to connect to our natural blueprint of health. The way we get stuck looping in incomplete expressions of hyper-socialization, fight, flight or freeze. The way our bodies get triggered and react without our cognitive consent in the moments when we wish they’d just obey.
I love my partner. Why am I so triggered with sex?
I really want to date again, but I don’t trust myself (or others) to have safe sexual experiences.
I keep getting into situations where I have no idea how to say what I really want (and end up doing things I don't.)
I feel like I can't trust myself (or anyone else) sexually...
GAH, what's wrong with me? Will I always be this way?
My answer? No. You truly don’t have to be.
There is healthy sex and true love after trauma.
And more importantly, there is deep uncompromising belonging to self.
The kind of self-belonging that makes life feel safe again, in ways beyond imagination, and in moments that extend far beyond the bedroom.
Sex After Trauma is a book of soulful stories and practical guidance for reclaiming safe love and intimate belonging.
After working with hundreds of humans to help them break their trauma spells and come into aligned relationships with their sensuality, sexuality and wholeness (and... after doing so myself!), I’ve developed a clear path and process for guiding people to the other side.
Below are the three main frameworks I use with my clients.
In Sex After Trauma, each of these frameworks thoroughly but gently guides you home to your inherent blueprint of health and wholeness.
The Lifecycle of Holistic Growth • The Map of Reclamation • The Constellation of Healing
This stuff's an immersive journey that requires devotion. I won't say it's easy and I won't say it's fast. But it is wholehearted and it is thorough.
Sex After Trauma is a map for remembering.
I tell soulful stories. I offer practical guidance. And I share tons of tools you can use to help you retrieve your gifts from the underworld and cross your threshold into a whole new way of being.
We’re living inside a sexual trauma epidemic.
This may seem obvious now in the aftermath of #metoo, Harvey Weinstein, Louis CK, and all the others…
But it’s not just an epidemic because we can finally tell our stories.
It’s also not an epidemic because the stories are true and people are finally believing them.
Yes, in so many ways we're living in a time of systemic collapse and cultural bankruptcy.
But from my vantage point, the biggest epidemic is that trauma (plus institutionalized oppression) causes you to internalize the cost of other people’s transgressions.
It makes you think you’re bad for everything that's happened.
It makes you ashamed for wanting.
It makes you fear your very own pleasure, your very own turn on, your most innocent holy wet.
It makes you turn away from the beauty of sex because it’s been desecrated, violated and exploited.
Or... it has you go the other way: sexing it up in every which way, even if that's not your most aligned expression of health.
What happens to a society where you’re divorced from your authentic pleasure and you fear your truest power?
Bad things, people. Bad things.
But what happens to a society where consensual orgasmic union becomes the new norm?
Where safety, voice, integrity and erotic expression are honed, taught and celebrated?
We re-birth the blueprint of a healthy planet earth.
Our cultural and personal pasts do not have to write the future.
But we can’t write a new story if we’re still reacting from an old one.
Sex After Trauma is the guidebook for healing old hurt and embodying your part of our new collective story.
My intention is for Sex After Trauma to speak to the human experience of needing safe love and intimate belonging, and the many ways this need can be neglected or violated, as well as how we re-cultivate a healthy experience of meeting it.
That said, a majority of my professional experience is working with middle class cis-gendered white women (on the sexual identity spectrum). It's the group whose story I'm most experientially studied in and familiar with, and also is how I personally identify. (I'm also queer and poly-lite.)
There are limits to what I can speak to from personal and even professional experience, which is why I've committed to interviewing a range of people with different intersections of identity for the book. There will still be natural limits to what I can and even should speak to. But this book will include examples and stories from people with a range of intersecting identities.
My goals for the greater impact of this book.
- To be used as a guide for individuals to navigate their personal healing
- To be used by groups of survivors who’d like to walk their healing paths together
- To be used as curriculum for professional healing training programs
- To be used as a resource for therapists, coaches and healers to share with their clients
- To be part of the larger conversation about what’s needed for sustainable transformation to happen, both on an individual and cultural level
- To be of service to the healing of humanity – making way for pleasure, joy, peace, justice, trust and safety for all beings on earth
Where I am in the writing and publishing process.
The full manuscript of Sex After Trauma is outlined, and a full draft will be complete by early February 2018.
I’ve got a team of editors and publishers that will ensure the book is birthed into the world early September 2018 with the highest quality.
This high quality production is only possible because of your generous support via Kickstarter.
Thank you for helping me make this the best possible book it can be!
My Kickstarter Goals.
I am raising $40,000 to fund all aspects of the editing, publishing, printing and distribution of Sex After Trauma!
Here's my budget, in more detail:
- Developmental Edit $4500
- Line + Copy Edit $2000
- Publishing $1200
- Interior Design $2000
- Cover Design $600
- Printing $10000
- Shipping + Distribution $2800
- Printing + Packaging $1000
- Audio Book Recording, Editing + Publishing $2300
- Photo + Video $3500
- PR + Advertising $2000
- Publicity $1400
- Tech Support $700
- Bank Fees $2000
- Kickstarter Fees $2000
- Miscellaneous Unexpected Costs $2000
Am I paying myself with this Kickstarter?
Not on the front end. The funds raised through this Kickstarter are simply to bring the book all the way to the finish line. Once the book is complete, I'll be able to make money off further book sales, and programs I develop that incorporate the teachings in the book. For now, it's all about getting this baby into the world to help as many people as possible.
Rewards, in further detail.
Professionally recorded. Produced with epic love.
Be a lover, baby.
10 hours from my lips to your ears.
All the ways for all the days.
You can have it all. :)
The night will begin with a ceremony of intention, and continue with a mini consent workshop led by me. Then myself and seasoned DJ, Bren Stylewise, will lead you through a dance journey to remember forever.
Hosted in the beautiful La Jolla, California... escape your winter locale and come for an evening of magic, mystery and safe mayhem! I'd sooo love to dance with you!!
I've danced 5rhythms for many years and the music set will take you through an experience of varied emotions and possibilities. Super healing. Super fun. Super sweaty. ;)
Oh! We'll also get a fun Sex After Trauma backdrop for photoshoots galore... Dress your aliveness, baby. (But make it super comfy for dancing.)
Shabbat is one of my very favorite rituals EVER. In the Jewish tradition, every Friday night we light the candles, sing ancient prayers, feast together and let the illumination of spirit enter our bodies and souls after a week of hard work.
I'd be sooo grateful and honored to share this tradition with you and an intimate group of people at my lil brown house by the sea in La Jolla, California.
YES. These are seven of the smartest humans I know when it comes to sex education and trauma resolution.
Tune in to these hour+ long epic interviews and learn from some of my favorite friends and teachers...
Kimberly Ann Johnson:: post-partum sex and vaginas.
Rashida KhanBey:: reclaiming your sexy, embracing your body.
Ev’Yan Whitney:: self-image, sexting and whole-self healing.
Amber Leitz:: sex magic and shadow dancing.
Elizabeth DiAlto:: boundaries and healthy relationships.
Erin Brown:: sovereignty, feminism and other queen shit.
Reid Mihalko:: for partners of people with sexual trauma.
Healing the hard stuff can be super... hard. But processing your story via writing can be an incredible doorway to personal liberation if it's done safely.
Get trauma-informed tools + prompts for writing yourself free in this potent collaboration with Writer's Muse, Jeanette LeBlanc.
- A 10 part course with videos, guidebooks and 23 in-depth exercises delivered in individual lessons
- The complete 75 minute video course if you prefer to watch in one sitting
- An audio file of the entire video – so you can listen while on the go
- Complete PDF Magazine video guide, with full transcription of the video
- Complete PDF Workbook with each of the questions and exercises developed from the interview, designed to help you create rituals, practices and support for your writing journey
- Safely preparing for writing into difficult territory
- Signs of a traumatic trigger & what to do when you notice them
- Determining if it is safe to write or if you need more support before writing
- Self-regulation tools to use if you get triggered through writing
- Tools and techniques for transformative trauma writing
- Dealing with voices of doubt and comparison
- Fear of triggering others with your writing
- The choice to write publicly or privately and the risk of upsetting loved ones
- Knowing where to start your story when so much has happened
- Writing a book (when you have no idea how to write a book)
You + me. 90 minutes. Recorded so you can replay anytime. Bring any topic to the table. Business strategy. Secret traumas. Sex sex sex. Boundary blocks. Discovering your secret sex goddess. Life purpose. You name it, We'll go all in, together. With tons of love.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for your deep generosity. This kind of healing work costs a lot – not just financially, but in terms of time, energy and commitment. Your gift will give another human a serious boost of cosmic support as they venture into their underworld to reclaim their greatest health. THANK YOU!
I'll send over a page of provocative intake questions, then we'll gather together and set an intention for our 3-session immersion. Each session will be full of deep listening, heaps of compassion and potent intuitive guidance. You'll receive personalized practices specific to the very spot you're in, and you'll leave feeling more connected to your health and capacity than when you came. All our sessions can be recorded for replay whenever you need a boost.
For a high-quality, thorough and soulful experiential learning lab, join me and an intimate group of women as we travel through 12 powerful whole-self reclamation lessons that will leave you deeply changed for the better.
Read ALL about the Sex After Trauma School HERE.
I would love to spend 2 days together moving slowly and safely through your tender spots... revealing your truest strength and realigning to your most holistic health.
Come join me at my lil brown house by the sea in La Jolla, California. I'll cook for you, read you poems, draw you your own personal maps, take you to my favorite restaurants and listen to your deepest stories.
We'll do trauma resolution body work, nature oracles, guide work and coaching.
You'll have two sessions before and two sessions after to prepare and integrate.
This reward is perfect for the human who wants intimate, uninterrupted attention and tending. Deep presence. Fleshy connection.
Leading these immersive group experiences is my absolute favorite thing to do! I never knew how powerful a sisterhood could be until I formed these goups and saw their impact. Women leave feeling WAY more confident, healthy, centered, shameless, sensual, safe and like they truly belong as who they really are.
The sisterhood includes 12 live group lessons, 12 live group coaching calls, a 3-day immersive retreat and 2 one-on-ones with me.
It's a deep dive experience that leaves you with priceless understanding about your path, and invaluable connections as you travel it.
You can head right HERE to read all the details.
If you're interested in the sisterhood, please book a call with me right HERE ASAP so we can talk and feel out if it's the right fit for you.
(We can also do a payment plan, if paying in full is out of reach! No problem-o.)
Hello, love. I know what it's like to really want the best care imaginable. To know that if you go all in, you'll come all the way through. It's what I've done. It's how I do.
If you're like me, this reward is for you.
Let's talk and feel it out. But know that with this reward you get a 2-day immersive retreat at my house with me, the Sex After Trauma Sisterhood lessons, community and retreat, ongoing 1-on-1 sessions with me that include a personalized program, and the kind of intimate attention that changes everything.
I'd love to connect if you have the sense that it's time, that you're ready. Just book a feeler call with me right HERE.
Payment plans are available, so feel free to reach out and we can make it work.
Risks and challenges
CHALLENGE: A VERY SENSITIVE TOPIC
Sexual trauma is not easy territory. While many people WANT to resolve and heal their traumas, moving toward that very healing activates lots of fear in the body and mind. I've created a book that aims to offer safe, relatable, educational and healing stories and tools for trauma resolution. Still, many people may have difficulty with the topic, and edge away from it rather than toward it.
My personal and professional experience is limited by my own intersecting identities as well as the identities of most of the people I work with. While endeavoring to tell as much of the "whole story" as I possibly can (which requires I listen to a lot of people's stories that I don't normally hear), my scope is not all-encompassing.
CHALLENGE: PRIVACY AND ANONAMINOTY
I've changed the names and details of all clients in Sex After Trauma. I've also changed the names and details of anyone whose exposure may be negative or non-consensual. Names and identities that remain original do so only with express permission from the people themselves.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! <3 <3 <3
We're on our way to a whole new way, together!
RachaelLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (29 days)