When I stumbled into the site I was looking for something to prove that I was not the person I had thought I was for most of my life. Sigel and I had just recently opened our marriage to include Arch and I wanted to reinvent myself totally. I wanted to be a woman free of the oppression of society’s expectations and making her own way in the world. Plus, it gave me a naughty thrill!
My daughters were growing up and I felt it was time that I got to know who I really was before I was left being just someone's mother. I know the destruction that narrow definitions can wreck on a family, and on an individual person, so if I was going to change anything I was going to change how I defined myself. EdenFantasys was the place where I began.
I found the site to be colorful, exciting and there were SO many choices! I knew sex toys existed and even owned a few very cheap and old products, but I never dreamed how much really existed. I immediately began my wish list and Sigel and I discussed how much I could spend. I had made a choice the day our oldest was born that I would not work outside the home. I had no real money of my own but we were beginning to change that aspect of our lives as well. Sigel was learning to trust my judgment and let go of the purse strings. So I ended up with a small budget of money I could spend on buying sexy things to try. He was happy because I was embracing my sexuality and I was accepting his sexuality finally after almost 20 years. In those turbulent years that followed our decision to open up to possibilities we had never imagined existed, EdenFantasys was one tranquil spot I could browse around and escape for a bit. I trawled the product pages and decided that I could write marginally well so why couldn’t I give my opinion about products as well? I was so very shy and my first reviews were very enthusiastic but they came from the heart. I really was in love with the new person I was evolving into.
During this time Eden was undergoing a shakeup of staff. I missed most of the turmoil because I hadn’t yet discovered the forums, and the forums were rather small and under used. I put my name up for advanced reviewer consideration and just kept building my immense wish list. Honestly, I never dreamed that a company would be so interested in my opinion that they would send me products to try out for free. Most of the “product tester” jobs were scams and I couldn’t afford to waste precious money just when we were beginning to live like we weren’t starving. The day Victoria messaged me that she was approving me for advanced reviewer, and admitted that she liked my enthusiasm, was like sitting all night in the dark knowing there would be a sunrise but not really expecting it. Then the sky just lights up in Technicolor glory! I still have that email.
Over the years I have gone from requesting a few tame vibrators to testing products that really push my personal boundaries and the boundaries of my partners. I have discovered that I don’t have to wait until I have lost weight to wear sexy things. I have really learned to listen to my partners and hear what they say about my body. I have found a group of people who see the world almost the same way I do and I have realized a dream I never knew I had. EdenFantasys brought the writer out in me and then provided a platform for her to shine.
Today, I am much more confident in my sexuality. I am incredibly knowledgeable about sex toys. I can talk confidently about sex toy materials, proper care, proper use, and proper storage of a wide variety of sex enhancement products. I can recommend products based on preference and I have a toy collection that boggles the mind. I went from just two little toys to a bedroom better stocked than most brick and mortar sex toy stores! I have bought sexy under things regularly for the first time since I was in High School and my lingerie is threatening to overtake my closet. I have mentored many and edited many more. I have edited a book and I have run a fairly successful club for over a year. I have written over 300 reviews and have several dozen more to publish. Not bad for someone who was told she had the creativity of a slug!
Through sharing my experiences with polyamory I have really grown as a person and my relationships have thrived. I cannot say that this would have been the case without the forum to allow me to think through each decision and receive helpful and gentle support, and even critique. I remember when I was pregnant with my son feeling like I owed my family the “right” to know this new child. I had cut off contact because they had hurt my other children and I needed to step up and protect them. I talked this all out in what felt to me like a whining, self serving piece of trivia. To my surprise several people complimented me on the courage it took to share such an intimate piece of myself to the community and I was told that just because you are born into a family doesn’t give them the right to hurt you continually. I was given permission to protect my children and be a mama wolf. It was the most empowering moment I think I had ever felt up until that point. Everyone else in my life assured me that my family loved me and wanted the best for me. No matter how often I explained that my Mother actively prayed for me to fail and come crawling back to her, I was told that she loves me and all that emotional baggage. The community here at EF, however, resoundingly told me I had to do what I believed was right and that if my parents were ill I had the right to protect myself and my real family. I didn’t “owe” my parents anything.
I could go on and on about how EdenFantasys has changed my life and who I am, fundamentally, as a person but on this 10th anniversary year I would just like to say thank you to each and every person who contributed to the amazing community that has forged its way into my life in such a profound way. I love you all, but most of all I finally love myself which is the greatest gift EdenFantasys has given me.