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Take Your Hand Off My Ass, Please

Navigating personal boundaries and the need for others to respect individual limits, particularly in personal space.

Photo: Анастасия Климец via Pexels

I have one of the few jobs in which a business meeting in a strip club is actually legitimate.

One such meeting evolved rather quickly into a pretty compromising situation. I can’t go into graphic detail here, but the experience involved a private room in the titty bar where anything goes, a dancer who looked like Miley Cyrus circa 2017… and a strawberry. I ran out of the club crying.

I think that people assume that I have an “anything goes” attitude. Maybe they think that I don’t have boundaries, but I do.

People see me as a sort “Pope of Sex” and come to confess all of the intimate details of their sex lives. However, when they come to me, they aren’t seeking absolution; they want acceptance. I see this as a perk, because I’m very nosy.

However, as much as I enjoy my role as counselor to the sexually curious, I have to say that my comfort level in receiving very personal information depends largely on the circumstances of where the confession is taking place and who is confessing. The placement of the individual’s hands is also important. In other words, those hands better not be on my ass.

And yet, shock of all shocks: wayward hands seem to wander aimlessly into the regions of my personal space on a rather frequent basis. In other words, people like to feel me up.

I love being able to provide fantasies to people through my work. I know I present a sexy image. I sell sex, after all. But it’s not in my job description to sleep with, flirt with, or counsel every tipsy individual I encounter.

I’m certainly not the first woman to receive unwanted sexual advances. In fact, as I mentioned in a previous column, I have to struggle to overcome the nagging need to be nice all the time — especially to men. I suspect that many women were taught what I was: that we should be polite, pretty, and try to smile and not cause a fuss. As a grown woman, not only is the “good girl” obligation impossible — it’s also dangerous.

As much as I want to run with the boys, at times it isn’t a good idea. When I was at that strip club I mentioned earlier, I felt uncomfortable in the private room as the only woman (well, the only woman who wasn’t stripping), but I also thought, “I don’t want these guys to think I’m uncool. I just need to ride this out. It’s all good.”

But then one of the dudes I was with yelled, “OK, everyone… tops off!” Suddenly I had a barrier to cross: leave my shirt on and keep my distance, or toss it off and try to blend in. Well, I took my shirt off, and unfortunately, for me, I happened to be bra-less that evening. As soon as I popped my top, I realized that I will never be one of the boys. It simply doesn’t mean the same thing for them to be topless.

When it comes to boundaries, I’ve learned that it’s best for us to listen to ourselves and to respect the way we feel. As women, we are so quick to respond and to make everyone else feel at ease, but our own feelings are just as important. The best way to determine your boundaries is to be open to all kinds of experiences, but the most important part is to communicate with people once you’ve reached your limit. In future columns I will discuss more about how to determine your sexual limits.

In the meantime, if we happen to meet in person, please don’t grab my ass. I don’t like it.

Originally published in The Huffington Post on Jan 19, 2012

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