Society vs. The Sexually Provocative

A loved one recently suggested to me that I’m being hypocritical, because of this:

I complain about society judging pole dancers, and try to broaden people’s ideas about pole dancing as a legitimate sport and artistic form, while at the same time not helping my cause by posting risque, sexually provocative photos of myself on the Internet.

By sharing those images with the world, I’m only fueling negative connotations of pole dancing and its connection to strip clubs/strippers.

I really value the honesty and courage it took for this opinion to be shared with me.

Tonight, another sweet friend had me question myself:

Honestly, do I want to make my life more difficult or easier? Do I notice that I’m building obstacles for myself?

Even if other people are being “judgmental” (regardless of whether it’s “right” or “wrong” for them to judge me), do I realize that I could eliminate this source of conflict between myself and others, establish stronger connections to other people and experience more support by presenting myself differently?

Here’s the advice I received:

Regardless of how personally meaningful or fun I think my posts are, the fact is that most of society does have negative attitudes towards brazen and permissive sexuality.

While it’s true that I can do whatever I want and am free to make choices that I personally like, it’s important for me to realize this:

While I may see things one way, most of society is going to see things differently (negatively!) because…

  • the things that I’m interested in (pole dancing, polyamory, non-monogamy),
  • and the fact that I’m being way more open and public about my sexuality than the average person

are NOT well understood or mainstream.

Image Credit: Bigstock

I’ve been given plenty to think about, that’s for sure!

If my goal is to help people become more curious, open and accepting of alternative lifestyle choices (whether or not they choose to adopt those lifestyles), I don’t want to alienate them by being unrelatable.

I don’t want to turn them off to learning more by being too shocking and offensive for them.

So, now I’m trying to figure out the best approach:

How to still express myself and my thoughts, how to share what fascinates me, and how best to promote openly supportive attitudes about sexuality.


  1. Pingback: April Round Up |Pole Blogs of Note

  2. I am glad that there are pole artists that dont abandon the sexual side of pole or themselves. I was a stripper in Portland, Oregon, one of the few places you can find clubs that allow you to be a unique artist as well as a stripper. It was the most drama free, positive work environment I have ever worked in, the dancers were more than supported by their environment, and the vast majority of customers were kind, respectful, and far from what most would expect (there were many women and couples as well as men).

    I was drawn to pole BECAUSE of the sexual side. It doesnt always have to be ass shaking to be sexual, and perhaps that is the problem: the TYPE of sexuality that is typically associated with pole dance, not sexuality itself being part of the dance.

    I think many will continue to be turned off by it, as “classy” or “tasteful” as the sexuality is (in comparison to the general idea
    of a stripper) until they become more comfortable with sex in general. I dont see many people who can differentiate styles of sexuality in the population that is disgusted with pole, in general. I think their deeper problem with sex as a subject must be resolved first in order to appreciate any dance that is sexually charged.

    On a side note, my stepmother said some absolutely awful things to me when she found out I was stripping again. However, I stuck to my guns, gave my rationale, shared some experiences, focused on the positives of it, etc and eventually she came around a bit. Now, she would try to use the pole in my house, but she “is scared she will rip it from the ceiling”.

    I doubt she will change her views on sex too much, she and my dad are Mormon, but she respects me (for the most part). Many of those who criticize are religious, and trying to change their sexual views can be exhausting. I have found that if I live my “gospel”, focus on the beautiful and positive aspects of sexuality, and do my best to be a good person, eventually people run out of straws to grasp and have to open up a bit :))

    • That’s awesome! I’ve heard so many good things about the strip clubs in Portland. I didn’t know too much about the working conditions for dancers, but I’ve heard about the incredibly impressive acrobatic pole tricks.

      Great point about different styles of sexuality. If it’s overt and “in your face”, that does tend to be more controversial than if it’s kept subtle or more sensual rather than highly sexual.

      So glad to hear you’ve found a way to embrace what you love to do, regardless of the criticisms and judgments of other people. That’s the approach I take – owning it and being confident in my choices, by remembering what I love about what I do!

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