The inside scoop on the first inaugural Sexology Summit for Pleasure Professionals.
When you hear the word “conference,” there are certain things that may immediately come to mind, like professional attire, panel presentations, and coffee breaks between sessions. For certain topics, you might also associate conferences with business, tech, and motivational speaking. But how often do you hear about sex conferences? Yep, you heard that correctly. On March 10th, the first inaugural Sexology Summit for Pleasure Professionals, a hybrid virtual & in-person conference dedicated to those who work in the field of human sexuality, was hosted at the Eaton hotel in Washington D.C.
Presented by Sexpert Consultants LLC and the Swallowing Training and Education Portal, the summit connected a community of over 400 professionals who addressed the obstacles faced by professionals in the pleasure education space and provided opportunities to create catalysts for change.
A wide range of emerging sexuality educators, bloggers, therapists, medical professionals, retailers, sex workers, adult performers, content creators, legal professionals, and more joined the nation’s capital to connect, learn and share knowledge and resources at this inaugural professional development event.
“From Barcelona to Berlin, the UK to the U.S., we had speakers, attendees, and volunteers representing a diverse group of pleasure professionals, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive,” Sexpert Consultants founder Reba C. Thomas says.
Staying true to its theme, “Liberation through Pleasure Education and programming,” the workshops at the Sexuality Summit focused on the importance of centering pleasure in our knowledge of human sexuality, which ultimately creates a path to the kind of liberation we tread for ourselves and for our clients.
Of course, every workshop was intriguing (after all, this is a sex conference, so how could any of them be boring?), but there were some noteworthy ones that stuck out in particular:
AskMeAnything: Sex, Medicine & Pleasure
When it comes to sex, you’d be surprised how many occupations may have to deal with the topic, even if those occupations don’t specifically specialize in sex. Take the medical field, for example. During this panel, urologists, primary care providers, and speech pathologists spoke about how sexuality topics within their line of work and hosted a Q&A for the crowd to ask their most pressing questions.
Not-so-fun fact that attendees learned during the panel: Apparently just over two-thirds of future doctors are receiving less than 10 hours of sex education across their entire four years in medical school. So, if you’re in the medical field and you’re in need of resources on how to discuss sexuality topics with your clients or at least in need of a network of professionals who specialize in sex to refer your clients to, be sure to go to the next Sexuality Summit!
Erotic Rope Bondage 101
MrBLK (Mister Black) gave an introduction to people who were curious about incorporating rope in the bedroom. After covering all things from risk awareness to consent and negotiation, there was a more hands-on approach to learning, which included a live demonstration at the end of the workshop to show audience members how to practice their tying techniques.
Pleasure in the Pen: A Writers’ Workshop
This interactive writers’ workshop hosted by myself and sexuality arts educator Mystkue Woods, MEd, helped attendees sharpen their skills as writers, whether they’re writing erotic stories or writing professional articles about sex for mainstream publications. Mystkue helped the crowd explore how sexual arousal is attained through written and oral language and I showed the audience how to craft the perfect pitch to send to their dream publication. Not only did we share some gems with the crowd on writing techniques, but we also stressed tips on how to make writing a legitimate side hustle.
Down, Dirty & Affirming: Word Play Workshop
Research indicates that the more comfortable we are talking about sex, the more satisfactory our sex lives will become. Luckily for attendees, Steph Zepata offered their framework for incorporating dirty talk in a manner that allows us to properly express our identities, needs, and desires.
Wellness Wind Down
In addition to educational workshops, discussion sessions, and data gathering, the Sexology Summit allowed participants to make time for self-care in the wellness center of the hotel. Attendees of the wellness wind down enjoyed a sound bath and guided meditation that causes relaxation, reduces stress and anxiety, and promotes a positive mental state through gentle touch.
As if the weekend couldn’t get any more cool, the self-care portion didn’t just begin and end in the wellness center. The Sexology Summit transformed one of the larger conference rooms into a VIP lounge that included free goodie bags full of lube, mouth-watering spray, discount codes for sex shops, and edible body paint. The VIP lounge also included free food and an influencer section with a microphone, video camera, and large lights as the perfect setup to interview fellow speakers on the juiciest sex topics previously discussed at other workshops throughout the day.
During the final moments of the Sexology Summit, the conference went out with a bang (no pun intended) with a final high-energy afterparty featuring a guest DJ, salacious card games for couples and groups, and a lap dance competition.
As you can imagine, when the conference was over and it was time to check out of the Eaton, there was nothing but hugs and happy tears. The 2023 Sexology Summit was definitely a success, so follow their official website and Instagram for updates on the next conference!