Yes! Dr. Charley will drop by this afternoon, and here’s an interview with her.
It’s lovely to be here with you to discuss a topic near and dear to my heart. Though several recent books and movies have made dominance and submission a popular topic to discuss, it’s still taboo.
LJ: You have a rather unusual career. How did you pick it, what training did it take—obviously a lot of school.
CF: I didn’t start out to be a Clinical Sexologist or Sex Therapist; the Universe merely nudged me in that direction. While working on my Masters in Counseling Psychology, I discovered that there wasn’t enough comfort or education on sexual health and pleasure and I wanted to discover ways to help men and women reach their full potential. I will say that though it’s great to help individuals accomplish their hopes and desires for fulfilling relationships, it can be challenging as well. Society has imposed many obstacles made sexual pleasure and health an impossibility at times; even made pleasure something we should be ashamed off. However, over the past 20-years as a Sex Therapist, I can say I’ve seen a lot of growth in our society and it makes me pleased and hopeful for our future as a society. As for training, I hold a Masters in Counseling Psychology and a Doctorate in Human Sexuality, as well as, various certifications in sexuality, sexual health, hypnosis and NLP.
LJ: What were some of the biggest hurdles you faced?
CF: Censorship! The worse part of censorship is that people aren’t even aware it’s happening. It’s so insidious. Often, it’s disguised in speeches as “morality” or “family values.” Yet, it all comes down to someone deciding what you can and cannot know, see, feel, or explore. That’s alright when you’re a child and need protection; however, it’s not acceptable as an adult capable of making your own decisions. I remember being denied a position as a Director of Social Services at a hospital because the medical director there “googled” me. Apparently, the hospital objected to the workshop I recently conducted for women called, “Embracing Your Orgasmic Potential.” And when I first started out in 1990’s, I was told I couldn’t send my company envelops through the mail because my logo at the time was a picture of Venus d’Milo and it was felt to be “too sexual” in nature.
Over the past twenty (20) plus years, I’ve found that people’s desire to censor others hasn’t changed. What has changed is the fact that women and men have started to demand answers and openly embrace their sensual potential.
LJ: What advice would you give to someone who wanted to become involved in BDSM but who lived in an area in which there were no clubs, and perhaps an unwelcoming climate for the lifestyle?
CF: Come to our conference! BDSM Writers Con provides a wonderful opportunity for women and men to explore the BDSM lifestyle in a safe and entertaining environment. Yep, we have many couples who come together to get a taste of what the D/s lifestyle really is. We provide workshops on various aspects of the power exchange taught by respected and highly experienced BDSM Expert. Our workshops and Live Demos are for beginners and experienced individuals. We even host our own, Taste of Dominance event where you can experience BDSM activities first hand, whether as a Dominant or submissive; learn how to throw a whip, flogging, and more. Best of all, you get to hang-out with your favorite authors and other readers.
I always recommend you do your research into the BDSM lifestyle to understand its nuances. BDSM is not anarchy, there is structure. My book, BDSM The Naked Truth is an excellent introduction into the world of Dominance and submission and provides some valuable insights into the lifestyle as well as ways to stay safe while exploring. If you’re an author writing in this genre, BDSM for Writers is a must have resource book that will provide you with ways to make your characters comes to life.
Remember that though, 50 Shades of Grey opened the door to mainstream discusses about dominance and submission, BDSM is still taboo. Thus, you must find like-minded individuals to share your passion with. One website I recommend is Fetlife.com which provides information on local clubs and groups around the US and the world. Sometimes, the groups and clubs aren’t in your area, yet they are out there. Then again, you can start your own group. I recall driving 90-minutes to a club when I lived in Washington State as there were none in the township I lived in. Ultimately, it’s up to you how much effort you’re willing to put into what you desire.
Your book, BDSM for Writers, is excellent in many ways, and you write very authoritatively and show an enormous respect for the subject. Can you talk about your sources for some of the information?
CF: Thanks for the compliment on my book, I’m always thrilled to hear someone enjoyed it. smiles. Research! Research! Research! It was an obsession for me when I first discovered that having desires to dominant another human being was perfectly normal. Something thousands of other women and men love to do and experience. I wasn’t weird as so many people, friends, and society declared merely because my idea of sharing passion and desire was different from theirs. I’ve been an active participant in the D/s Lifestyle for more decades than I wish to admit to. I will admit, there’s always something more to discover in this life.
My books, BDSM for Writers and BDSM The Naked Truth were my way of helping others understand that dominance and submission is about respect, love and fun just as any other relationship should be—whether that relationship is vanilla or kinky. The books also provide wonderful resources and other books to help readers gain more knowledge in this realm.
You’re clearly very busy with writing, running BDSM Writers Con, lecturing, being a therapist, etc. What do you see yourself doing in the future?
CF: Vacationing in Peru and exploring the Larco Museum is at the top of my list. Writing a book on the Moche Tribe who seems to have revered sexuality 3000 years before the Inca’s even existed. As a Clinical Sexologist, that fact is fascinating; it shows a culture where people didn’t have to hide who they were or who and how they loved. Definitely on my Bucket List.
And since I love my job and hosting BDSM Writers Con, I’d love to invite you and all your fans to join us for our upcoming conference. We are the ONLY conference in the world dedicated to teaching authors and readers about Dominance and submission. Definitely an experience you don’t want to miss.
Thanks, Lilac for having me on your blog. I invite you and your fans to feel free to ask any questions.
A little about Dr. Charley Ferrer:
Dr. Charley Ferrer is a world-renowned Clinical Sexologist and Sex Therapist. She is the award-winning author of BDSM The Naked Truth and over 15-other books on sexual health. She lectures throughout the US and Latin America on sexual health and self-empowerment. She is highly sought after for her expertise and teaches at several colleges and universities. Join her at BDSM Writers Con to discover why Dominance and submission is much more than just whips and chains.