Massachusetts Daily Collegian

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A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Sex, gender, pleasure and more discussed at Fall semester SEXpo

“Moving more towards a positive and pleasurable approach to sexuality”
Sophie-Zoe Schreyer/ Daily Collegian (2022)

On Nov. 14, the Not Ready for Bedtime Players held this semester’s SEXpo talk at the University of Massachusetts. A variety of topics were discussed, including consent, communication within relationships, masturbation, STD’s, sexual violence and a presentation by the key note speaker Kat Glick.

Performers acted skits out that included playful representation of certain topics that many young adults could relate to.

One of the skits showcased a couple working through issues surrounding both of them receiving pleasure out of sex, rather than just one partner. After the woman communicated to her partner that she was not happy, the issue was resolved and she ended the conversation with “So are you ready for round two?” to which he responded, “only if you’re ready for the best 10 seconds of your life.”

Although some of the topics were lighthearted, other topics including sexual violence were also discussed. The skit regarding sexual violence showed a woman and a man, both of whom interpreted each other’s signals differently.

The actors were met with a roar of laughter from the audience with many of their skits. Another one showed an awkward couple heading back to the bedroom where they played Taylor Swift’s “Shake it off” to help with the ambiance.

Soon enough the couple was ready to hit the sheets, but first, protection needed to be put on. The actors showed the woman applying a condom on him, but unbeknownst to her it didn’t go the way she planned, and she exclaimed, “I snapped his d— off!”

The skit finished off with the actors pausing to explain how to use a condom, repeating “pinch the tip, roll to the base!” to teach those in the audience the practices of safe sex.

“I hope that students see themselves in these skits and for some of them, get to know it doesn’t have to be a bad thing, and that they feel validated,” Leslie Roberts, a graduate assistant for the Not Ready for Bedtime Players, said.

In another skit, a woman explained that she “put on my favorite playlist,” but the man took this as “she put on this really sexy music.” This misinterpretation then led to a sexual encounter where the woman did not want to participate in even after saying no.

The actors used this interaction to explain how “consent is not a blurred line.”

In regards to the topic, the crew made it known that the Center for Women and Community, the Center for Counseling and Psychological Health, and the University of Health Services are all places where resources are available to help if an incident of sexual violence occurs.

Kat Glick, the founder of Personal Evolution and licensed professional counselor was a keynote speaker that night.

She started off by asking the question: “what are the actual elements of consent? What is most important about consent?”

“Consent is reversible,” Glick said.

Glick then shifted to the topic of intimacy which she says is “the level of closeness where you feel validated and you feel safe.”

“You feel seen and respected,” she said. “There are different levels of intimacy.”

Moving away from stereotypes, welcoming different people’s identities, and “moving more towards a positive and pleasurable approach to sexuality,” were a large part of her presentation.

 “We have a long way to go but I’m so happy these conversations are happening,” Glick said. The stereotypes society places around sexual relationships were described by Glick as an escalator.

Tommy Claire, Health Education Supervisor said he hopes that the attendees of this expose, “leave here knowing more tools, more resources, and more skills to be able to talk about their sexual health from an empowered place.”

Eva Maniatty can be reached at [email protected].

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