Stories about: sexuality

“Hello, welcome!” said Loona Teek, a pastel pink-haired queen wearing a tight vintage dress and a wide, purple lipstick smile as she swept us into a bar in Haebangcheon. At first glance it looked like most Korean dive bars. A rickety old wooden staircase led to a tiny basement, where mismatched chairs were strewn across …

Until recently, I had been abstinent for one year. Comedy-abstinent, that is. I also hadn’t had sex for about 10 months, but that was another story. Or so I thought. Sitting through a prominent male comedian’s “comeback special” at this year’s Melbourne Comedy Festival, I realised for the first time exactly how much I had …

Billy-Ray Belcourt (he/him) is a writer and scholar from the Driftpile Cree Nation. He won the 2018 Griffin Poetry Prize for his debut collection, This Wound Is a World, which was also a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. His second book of poetry, NDN Coping Mechanisms: Notes from the Field, was longlisted for Canada …

Hedon House is a proud supporter of Archer Magazine. The black blindfold slips, and I catch a tantalising glimpse of my stockinged legs strapped to leather stirrups suspended from the ceiling. Between them, my red skirt is stretched and riding high up one tattooed thigh. My body and I haven’t been on the best of …

The name is Wakim. That’s Wak-eem, not Whack-em. My childhood was filled with tabouli and hummus, and punishment was a smack with the wooden spoon. I’m Lebanese, and my features show it. The thick, curly hair on my head is what most people first notice about me. This hair was a catalyst for breakdowns in …

The first time I became cognisant of the importance others placed on romance was when I transitioned from the children’s section of my local library to the teen section. Suddenly, all of the books were about falling in or out of love. Nobody, it seemed, was all that concerned with friendships anymore. Until that point, …

Content warning: This article discusses violence and suicidal ideation.   Having been involved in queer-led activist and organising circles for some time, I’m all too familiar with caring for people in crisis. I’ve watched as friends burn themselves to the ground caring for at-risk members of our communities, guiding them through addiction, homelessness, suicidal ideation, …

It’s a familiar story: the casual coming out. A discussion over drinks with friends. The reactions from family when you tell them. Trying to explain to a potential partner that you have a label for how you experience sexual attraction, and how you identify as a result. But the coming out story for demisexuals tends …

My adolescence began when I was 19 years old, emotionally at least. It started, as things often do, with a book. I was in my first year at university. I had been bemoaning the secondary school final exams for eviscerating my reading habits. Many of my peers complained of a similar ailment: “I miss reading …

Some humiliations are delivered by people with good intentions. They warn you your fly is open or that the bottle of red wine you drank has turned your teeth grey. But, statistically, most humiliations are delivered for no good reason at all – and by my mother. “You completely lost yourself with that first boyfriend,” …

“No, no, no!” I was playing Chopin’s Etude Opus 25 No. 1 on my teacher’s grand piano, an expansive black instrument that filled the entire room. It twanged discordantly as my fingers fumbled, and I flinched at each reprimand. “Let’s just move on to the Bach and see if that’s any better.” For nearly twenty …

I’ll level with you, I type out. I kinda have no idea what I’m doing, so you’ll have to be patient with me. Her reply is immediate: That’s okay! As long as we both have fun with each other, that’s all that matters. It’s May 2020. Amongst everything else going on in the world at …

As a single mum for the last 16 years, summers with my kids were pretty much like those of many other divorced parents: awkward end of school concerts, Christmas across two households, and a holiday split in two. When the kids were with me, they would bundle into the car and trailer combo, and we …

Remembrance of poppers past

“We don’t sell that here,” the burly bearded man behind the counter of the sex shop said. “I think you’re after ‘wood varnish’.” This was pre-COVID-19, before I was forced to buy ‘poppers’ online during Melbourne’s lengthy lockdowns. At first, I looked at him dumbfounded, not getting the gist of what he was implying. “So, …

Heteronormativity and popular history

Caroline Newcomb lived and worked with Anne Drysdale on the Bellarine Peninsula for thirteen years, until the latter’s death. In her diary, Caroline described “my dearest and much-beloved Anne” as “the desire of mine eyes”. Upon her own death twenty years later, Caroline was buried beside Anne’s remains in their former residence of Coriyule. Historian …

‘Love in the Time of Coronavirus’ has been a source of entertainment and commentary during the pandemic. Playing on the title of Gabriel García Márquez’s novel, Love in the Time of Cholera, the hashtag has been attached to everything from questions about how to maintain healthy relationships during lockdown to stories about people ending up …

Most people don’t know exactly what their life will look like, or what they definitively want. We all have ideas about such things, but like burning incense, these ideas swirl and transform, twisting and augmenting over time. This can become more complicated amongst sexual minorities like myself. Sometimes other LGBT+ people find it problematic if …

I think about sex a lot. If you could take a microscope and peer inside my brain, you’d assume I was obsessed with sex and, in a way, I am. But it’s not the thought of actual sex that runs rings around in my head and tortures me in my sleep. It’s the fact that …

Hetsplaining male bisexuality

I was standing on the balcony of Bondi Golf Club at a straight wedding, a glass of champagne in my hand. My girlfriend at the time was introducing me to a number of her friends who I hadn’t yet met throughout our year-long relationship. One friend, Anna, was telling us a story of a recent …

As a child, I gravitated towards whatever connected with me on an emotional level. The first film I remember loving was High School Musical at around age nine. I only discovered the reputation the film had when I entered secondary school a few years later. At best, it was considered an embarrassing thing to like, …

Ah, beauty norms, my least favourite oxymoron. There is nothing ‘normal’ about heteronormative beauty. What we’re told are ‘beautiful’ characteristics usually represent the outliers of the diverse toolbox of human features. And this thing – ‘beauty norms’ – seems to predominantly hang itself off those of us who identify as femme. It drapes itself over …

My first couple years of practising self-love were soaked in orgasmic bliss. Touching myself felt so right, and it never occurred to me that later in life someone might vilify this practice in my mind. Image: Cris Trung   I started masturbating around the age of 11 or 12. At the time, I did not …

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Sexuality - Gender - Identity