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In Episode 6.5 of The Turn On, we talk to therapist Quinn Gee-Edwards about hoteps, narcissism and the importance of having a firm foundation before you date.
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Kenrya: Come here. Get Off.
Kenrya: So today we're talking to Quinn Gee-Edwards. Quinn is the owner of Magnolia Mental Health and founder of Hey Black Girl. Quinn is a licensed psychotherapist and specializes in codependency trauma and minority related issues including those that impact women, members of the LGTBQ community and people of color. Hey, Quinn.
Quinn: Hey, how are y'all?
Kenrya: We are lovely.
Erica: Doing well, thank you.
Kenrya: Yes. And glad to have you here. But before we dive into our questions, what are your pronouns?
Quinn: My pronouns are she and her.
Kenrya: Awesome Okay, we're both she and her as well.
Erica: So Quinn, we read your official bio, but we like to push folks to sum up what they do in regular ass words, so what would you say it is that you do?
Quinn: So basically, I get paid to be nosy. That's genuinely my favorite way to describe what I do. But I essentially like listen to people's issues, problems and things that they're celebrating. And kind of give them feedback or maybe better ways to handle it, different outlooks about things and maybe some coping skills about how to process going forward.
Kenrya: I love that she said things that they may be celebrating-
Erica: I was just about to say that.
Kenrya: ... Yeah, I don't really think about that. And when it comes to therapy, because I feel I spend most of my sessions. Like bemoaning the fucking state of the world.
Quinn: Yeah, I always have to remind people, "Yeah, bad shit don't just happen to you. It's not cloud or rain everyday, sometimes you have peaks of sunshine." And so, clients usually forget that they can come in and talk about the things that they did well as well as the stuff that sucks, but I do have some clients that do that.
Erica: And as you progress, hopefully there are more things to celebrate than.
Erica: Sucky rain clouds so.
Kenrya: Yes quick little commercial for therapy.
Erica: Yes. And we may get very clear on this show that we find therapy to be very beneficial. We look at our therapist as a superhero and all superheroes have an origin story. So what is your therapist origin story? How did you come to do this work?
Quinn: So originally I wanted to be a international psychologist and focus on, victims of sex trafficking and work with the FBI around that, under my mentor who is Jane Goodall's mentee. So, good stock, who's cool by the way. She's really cool. So I--
Kenrya: Is she Black?
Quinn: Jane Goodall, white as hell.
Kenrya: No, I know. She, Oh, I thought you were talking about your mentor.
Quinn: No, she's white woman too, but she don't want to be. But in the good way. You know how some white people be like, I wish I was Black. Oh I wish I could.
Kenrya: I wish I could renounce it.
Quinn: Yes, though she doesn't do that. She was like, yeah, you know, being white cool. Cause I get to call attention to the shit that, you know, white people be fucking up with, so I liked it.
Kenrya: I'm saying she uses her privilege properly. I like it.
Quinn: Exactly. So I originally wanted to do that, but I ended up, getting divorced in college and it really impacted kind of my professional trajectory as well, cause I went and got counseling myself, and I really liked it. It was a more direct way to approach the issues that I was having. And I thought, I like this, so I want to do more direct work with people. So I just switch gears and just did therapy instead.
Kenrya: I wonder how many folks come to be therapists from going to therapy?
Quinn: I would hope a lot, but, as I have recently learned in many of the therapist Facebook groups I mean, therapists are stupid too and some of them don't have their own having gone through their own shit and processing. I think that should be a requirement for our degree. But I was fortunate enough to work, in a clinical environment starting off, that required me to do my own counseling. And so I understand what it's like to be on the other side of... now be clear it sucked. It totally sucked. These are the people who told me that it was in my head that, I was experiencing microaggressions--
Erica: Oh wow.
Quinn: But I am glad that they made me go to counseling.
Erica: Well, I'd probably talk to you a lot, to put yourself in the shoes of your clients.
Kenrya: Yeah. And speaks to like the necessity of culturally competent therapy, right? Like the idea going and telling a white person, all my business is repelling to me. But like I think that some people, they live in places where they may feel like they don't have a choice or whatever. But even just the idea that even if you have to go to someone who may not match your experiences, that you are still looking for someone who can in some way if not relate to what you're going through, not fucking tell you that its all in your head.
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Quinn: Exactly. And that's kind of one of the reasons why I made sure that I specialize in populations that don't really see themselves on the other side of the couch. And you know, working at that clinic, I am grateful for the things they taught me. They also taught me about what microaggressions are. 'Cause I don't, I'm not sure, you know, a little back in the day, about four five years ago, back in the day of, Girbaud jeans in the South. But, which was literally five years ago. But it really taught me before I really had this larger sense of what microaggressions were. Like I was experiencing them in real time. And so later on when I look back and I have the language for that, I can help clients who experienced those things, navigate through them. And I'm sad that I went through that pain, but I also think that that made me the kind of therapist I am. And unbeknownst to them, it helped shape, you know, like my perspective of like this is the populations that I really want to work with, the people that I really see need this. And it felt good.
Kenrya: All right. So I mean you just said that, that feels good. I'm wondering like what is the thing that you like most about what you do on a day to day basis?
Quinn: Being right, and doing right. Like... I'm literally like, I don't know when this will premier, but I'm literally getting out of a day full of sessions, right? And I've been right all day. You know what I'm saying? Like, it's just after like six hours, you tired of being right your damn self... I just, I think that's my favorite part of my job is just that gratification, right? Like see bitch you be knowing stuff. And part of that is because I have this like imposter syndrome that like I'm not the right kind of therapist. I'm always so scared that I'm fucking up somebody's life or that I am just saying the wrong thing or I'm sweating. Oh God, Like they're distracted, they're not even listening to me. And so being able to come into a session after I've had those, insecure thoughts and hear a client really say back to me, "Hey, you know all that shit you told me to do, you was right. This is how it worked." It kinda helps like calm that voice in my head. But also I really do like helping people and again, I am nosy. I like knowing shit.
Kenrya: I mean that imposter syndrome shit is real. And I... like, I never really like, I know that it is something that women deal with right? And I know that it's something that women of color in particular deal with. Like I was talking to my partner and like he was asking how I was feeling about some new projects that I have, and I was like, "Yeah, I mean I feel good. But I'm also like trying to remind myself that I'm great and that I can do this and I'm not a fraud, and I'm not going to get in there and they're going to be like, what the fuck are you doing? I was like, you know, imposter syndrome." He was like, "What is that?" He was like, "I have never felt like that." And I was like, "Cause you got a dick." You have never been-You identify as a man. You've never been made to feel that way.
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative)-
Quinn: Yeah. And I mean, as much as even when we shield Black men, we shield ourselves with degrees and accomplishments, it doesn't go away, because that was one of the ways that I built, I thought I was building protection against my insecurity, right? Was to create this Spartan like, barrier between me and this force that my anxiety was just so loudly speaking through that you don't belong here. You're not like... you're not like the rest of the therapists, so there's something wrong with you. And I hear it every day, and some days it's louder than other days, but instead of just like building up this force but making it bigger and bigger and all that pressure behind that shield, busting through and causing me harm, I learned how to just like, you know, do it the 300 way, the battle of Thermopylae. Sorry, I really love Greek mythology. And just follow that shit through, like just find a way to beat my anxiety at its own game.
Kenrya: Wait, is that the one where they was kicking people into the pit?
Erica: They kicked one person into the pit, Ken. Oh my God.
Quinn: Yes, exactly one person, and it was the black guy by the way, but they kicked him yes.
Kenrya: You know I don’t know history.
Quinn: That's not history, that's a movie.
Erica: That ain't even history. Its a movie.
Kenrya: In my mind in the movie it was a whole bunch of niggas getting kicked into a pit.
Quinn: Yes, true.
Erica: It was literally one nigga and the only nigga into a pit and yes.
Kenrya: I just see red capes.
Quinn: That is one of my favorite movies--
Kenrya: Is it?
Quinn: That is one of my all time favorite movies, I love that movie. I yell that shit all the time. Like what I was problematic, right before I would get into a fight, I'd be like, "this is Sparta". In my head like, and I would just charge like literally whenever I'm on some stupid shit, I yelled. This is Sparta first and--
Erica: I was about to say now, is this really only when you were problematic, because I feel like you probably have "this is Sparta" moments. Like you probably had one at Whole Foods this morning.
Kenrya: Right now.
Quinn: I don't shop there, that's one for the devil, but not before that. That food unseasoned, I don't believe in it so.
Kenrya: It just depends on the location.
Quinn: Sure. Okay. Yeah.
Erica: Well Quinn, what is the most, what would you find the most challenging thing about being a therapist and working with people? Well, no. The most challenging thing about being a therapist.
Quinn: Because have you met people like that?
Erica: I know, my bad.
Quinn: So like there is the fun like comical stuff like, if I feel like I got bad BO that day or Oh my God, when I think I have a booger in my nose, or my hair is so fucked up today. I just want to head in one of my sessions and just wrapped my fucking hair. Like I'm just like, look, I don't want you looking at this shit no more let's just wrap this up. And they just was like, "I appreciate your authenticity." like, one of my braids fell out in my session like two weeks ago. Like it's just be stupid shit that'd be happening or I have some milk and now I got a fart my whole session, but I got to not look like it, or my session running over and I got to pee, and my client wants me to walk them to the door.
Quinn: So I got to stand up with my knees together and told him my damn bladder, so I don't piss on myself if my session like, just Amelia Bedelia.
Kenrya: Being human.
Quinn: Yes. So that part is hard. But then also of course like when my clients are triggering me, right? That's called, like, well countertransference is when I'm projecting my shit on to them. But sometimes like I have some of the same experiences and issues that my clients have, and when they're in front of me talking about things and I'm also processing and stuck with, it is so hard. It is so hard to stay present. But that's also when I do my best work as a therapist because I feel responsible for counseling two people in that room. Now that ain't what I'm supposed to do. But I mean sometimes you can't help, I don't know what my clients are getting ready to say to me when they walked into the room, so I just roll with it and just let them know like, "Hey, I understand exactly what you're going through. Here's what I think you should do." And usually when I'm saying that, I'm talking to myself, that's also why I use we a lot in sessions with clients, because I'm often reinforcing some of these things as well internally.
Kenrya: Damn. I mean I think I never thought about it that way, because even, you know, when I'm like setting my boundaries around certain things that I can't talk to people about, a lot of times it is because it is triggering to me. Like when, like if a family member wants to call and dump all of their shit on me, right? Like a boundary that I've had to set is that I can't do that because it fucks with my own anxiety. I never thought about the fact that, that would impact the therapist on a day to day. I think in a way I do kind of think of y'all as superheroes. Like y'all got this like extra shield around y'all that other folks don't have, that lets you be able to do that work and walk out unscathed. But that's not realistic.
Quinn: No. And nobody thinks that therapist need trigger warnings. Like that's the interesting part. Like, so for instance, it's like, it don't even always be about difficult, traumatic stuff. Like, because I'm like, you know, super liberal, whatever. My clients might say something like, "I don't like how my bussy is feeling nowadays." And I'm just like, "Okay wait, I was not ready yet for that conversation, but I appreciate the candor or like, I thought we was going to talk about your mama shit." So, and sometimes I'm just, because it's so fun sometimes it's, I like so many of my clients that sometimes I try to manage like talking to them, like as like somebody that's a peer and understands what they're going through and is enjoying this conversation with them, but also like making sure that I keep it therapeutic. But then also there's the times like when I'm out and about, especially like when I was on Twitter and back home, people would recognize me and they would just walk up to me and just start telling me trauma shit. Like--
Kenrya: Oh shit.
Quinn: I mean Kroger in the bread aisle ’cause I was finna fry some and catfish and spaghetti.
Kenrya: Yes spaghetti.
Quinn: All right. See, this is the largest group of fish and spaghetti advocates I've ever been around. So I just wanted to take a moment and appreciate that for the culture.
Kenrya: Yes, everybody soak it in.
Quinn: But, yes. Mm-hmm (affirmative)- Like the hot sauce in the bread. Yes. But no, I'm usually like in random places and someone will like, just decide that because I'm a therapist, they want to tell me something, when I'm getting my hair done, when I'm in the car, in a Uber, when I'm in a random party, when I'm meeting people, when I'm grocery shopping, like even like people would try to be my... people still try to literally be my friend to be, to get free therapy. Like I've had at least four people say that to me, in the past year and a half on social media via DMs. Like, you know, I would love to have a therapist as a friend cause I feel like you'd be my best friend, like here out. Like what?
Kenrya: These people have--
Quinn: You know.
Kenrya: ... no boundaries.
Quinn: Yes. And also we forget people are weird.
Quinn: So you know, like that's the hardest part it's just like, sometimes people forget that, I'm a regular person, you know.
Kenrya: Yeah. That's real shit. So we're gonna change gears a little bit, because you know we asked you to come on the show today because we read a book last week, "Let Me Free You" that features a self-described hotep. So for those who are listening who don't know, I'm going to read a short description of a hotep from the homie Damon Young over very smart brothers. And he first reminds us that hotep is an Egyptian word for peace. So we got that out of the way, like we know it means peace, but then he breaks down the way that we tend to use hoteps today. And he says for some signs that a person might be hotep look at the following, or look for the following. One, a steadfast belief in illogical conspiracy theories. Two an arrogant adherence to respectability politics. Three, sexism and homophobia that vacillate from thinly veiled to, "if being gay was natural, how come it ain't no any gay elephants?" Four unbowed and uncompromising support for any Black man accused of any wrongdoing. Even if said man's guilt is clear Lord. And five ashy ankles. It feels hella accurate.
Erica: And also I'd like to add that ashy part between your thumb and your index finger.
Kenrya: Thank God. So full disclosure. My shoes ashy right this moment, but--
Erica: Oh my God.
Kenrya: But I also was washing my dishes. So--
Quinn: Damn is mine? No.
Erica: You gotta keep lotion.
Kenrya: I mean, none of the other shit applies though. We good.
Kenrya: Okay. So while the male lead in the book, did his best to separate himself from what he even described as some of the worst things that are associated with being in a hotep. He made us think about some of the terrible men that we've encountered. And we happen to know Quinn, that you have a top notch hotep door. So what makes your alarms go off?
Quinn: So much, everything that Darnell said, of course. I would also add probably like either that area right before, like the bottom of your feet, like the ankle area, or like--
Kenrya: You like that tendon?
Quinn: The elbow.
Kenrya: The back of your tendon?
Quinn: Yeah. Like right there. Yes. That is it honey.
Kenrya: So they don't believe you are reaching down.
Kenrya: The white man...
Quinn: ... the white man.
Erica: The white man wants you to reach down.
Kenrya: But apparently they know because white people don't wash they legs so.
Quinn: But the white man wants you to bow to him. That's why he don't put lotion on his ankles. You see what I'm saying? Say woke, you know, please sleep. So that, I also think those curve fingernails—the ones that don't lift up, you know where it look like a... like no this aint. Like you got a one D finger, you know what I'm saying, no D whatever it is, like. It just flat [crosstalk 00:19:40]
Kenrya: Booty diggers. Call them booty diggers, cause you're just digging your booty without scratching yourself.
Quinn: Okay. Like those fingers were so gross. It's like he's a part of they... it's like a helmet for they finger.
Kenrya: Oh my God.
Quinn: But, if they got one of them ankh necklaces, or some kind of wood jewelry.
Erica: Pause for the cause. I have an ankh tramp stamp. I was young and wanted a tattoo and needed something that wasn't... I didn't want to get sweet and juicy on my back, so I was.
Kenrya: Bitch, did you think it was like deep.
Erica: I thought it was deep. I thought I was classy. Fuck all y'all.
Kenrya: Was you fucking with the hotep at the time?
Erica: No, this is part of what makes me a hotep magnet and now I'm mad.
Kenrya: Do cats see you out at festivals and get a glimpse of your ankh and they are like, "Ooh, that one."
Erica: Peace Queen. "I'm like, no, I'm really a bald-headed hoe, I really like bald headed hoe shit.
Kenrya: That's false advertising.
Erica: Yeah, it definitely is, it's like we wanted a queen. We got a hoe. I'm like, yup.
Quinn: That's it too. If they just always say like queen and what grand rising.
Kenrya: So, wait let's unpack grand rising because that's the last part of the story that we read. The couple wakes up and the dude says grand rising and then she say grand rising Neil, what does grand rising mean? What do we know collectively?
Kenrya: I don't, I'm assuming the sun rose.
Erica: I'm so mad.
Quinn: And it was grand. Someone thought that one morning. This is such a grand sun. Wake up grand sun stay woke that's where it came from.
Kenrya: Always center the man.
Quinn: I have no idea. But I mean I just, I think that that, and probably super creased clothes, maybe if they a Mason. Well I don't know, I'm thinking about that one lately. Might want to consider that.
Erica: Okay. Again, I feel attacked because I'm from the Midwest and we'd like to crease our pants. No longer do I do it, but it was a thing.
Quinn: Okay. yeah, that is, sure. I mean just general avoidance of equality for anyone except the Black man. Pork, you all know the hoteps, hate pork and they just, that's something I think that their might be they, if you're going to do a witch's circle, where you pour salt around, just put a bunch of pork chops in a fucking circle around you to repel these kind of niggas. Pork chops and lotion. I ankle lotion and maybe you all won't pull no goddamn hoteps no more. Just a nice little prayer circle.
Kenrya: I like it.
Erica: So why are hoteps dangerous? What like, for folks that are out here just trying to live, get a little dick, find a boo, why are they dangerous?
Quinn: I think that definitely if you're casually dating a hotep, you might be okay. Especially if you are a person going into it knowing, I'm just dick and free meals, pork free meals apparently. But that's it. That's all you're going to get from this nigga. If you go into it knowing he stupid knowing you can't take them nowhere. He going to tell you something bout anti vaccine.
Kenrya: Oh, God.
Quinn: Needles came from a white man. And ain't no gay elephants. Like lesbians don't exist at all. Like matriarch elephants couldn't be lesbians at all. All they do is live together for a long ass time walk around and do shit.
Kenrya: Raising their kids together.
Quinn: That's sound like a lesbian relationship to me, but fine. But if you are just casually dating a hotep, I think you're okay. As long as you keep your wits about you, you got some good friends, some good people to mirror back to you. Like, "Hey, this ain't it. I hope we're just having fun." But the problem is hoteps usually got real good dick. And so if you the type of person that get easily dickmatized you might be in trouble. You might--
Kenrya: Wait. It feels like you've had some personal experience with hoteps.
Quinn: Yeah, you know what? I am so grateful to only have dated a couple of hoteps in my youth. When I was under 18 so, you didn't have a word for it. You just knew this nigga was stupid.
Quinn: Like how you misspelling shit on Bebo. I don't know if you all remember Bebo. That was like, back in [crosstalk 00:24:40].
Quinn: That might've just been some Clarksdale, Mississippi shit. Somebody made a web page, nevermind. Edit that out. It was Mississippi's Facebook. But... So, but essentially I dated some niggas back then who were kind of like, just young and stupid. One of them was half Puerto Rican. So, he will talk to me stupid in Spanish and I just love it. He probably say, hace frio or something. The nigga was in Mississippi. He wants connected to his roots, but I don't know. But I mean, as an adult, I don't, I think my ex-husband was kind of a hotep, but it's hard to reflect his behavior and align it back as just a hotep. Because he's also was abusive, so I don't want to just label him as a hotep because he has this other dark thing to him. But we also have to really consider a lot of men who are hoteps. They're all this misogyny and internalized racism and homophobia. That's also really dark shit. And a lot of them are narcissists.
Kenrya: That's actually something we're going to ask you about.
Quinn: Oh, okay.
Kenrya: The overlap of because for me, a lot of the hoteps that I've encountered were narcissists as well. I also think, maybe it's important to take a minute and explain to our listeners what that is. Because I think we throw the term around a lot, it's just like how people call people sociopaths. But people don't really know what that means. So can you just take a second and back up and tell folks what a narcissist is?
Quinn: Yeah. And so you don't have to be a sociopath to be a narcissist. And also you don't have to have a personality. You don't have to be a narcissistic personality disorder to be narcissistic. But basically a narcissist is somebody that has, who they really are because of some kind of like childhood trauma or something like that. Something horrible at some point happened to them or disturbing or disruptive and they decided instead of confronting it and processing it and dealing with it like the rest of us, they was going to come up with a whole new sense of self and they won't see anything outside of that. And they want other people to engage with and or worship that false sense of self that they created.
Kenrya: Oh, shit. That feels very familiar. So, given that definition, does it make sense that I've seen so much overlap between hoteps and narcissist?
Quinn: No, I mean, because if we look at some of the stuff even that Damon just pointed out about the behavior of narcissism, I mean of hoteps it is an alignment. hoteps think that the man is the head of the family, the Black man specifically. And everything centers around him being King and women are subservient to him and all of this shit. And so that doesn't sound very different from a narcissist who just makes everything about them all the time. And who projects this confidence. And I am this fantastic man and really you ain't got shit and doing shit, but you just standing on the backs of these women and children or other people around you. And I just really also think that hoteps usually do a lot of gas-lighting, which narcissists also do. Warping your reality and making you feel like, well, is this really true? And also taking away your options from you by warping your reality making you think that nobody else will want you but them.
Kenrya: Right, isolating you.
Quinn: So therefore you got to do that. Yeah.
Erica: So why do you think we get swept up by them?
Quinn: Well, good dick. I mean--
Quinn: Let's just--
Kenrya: Put it out there.
Quinn: Keep a spade, put a spade--
Kenrya: But also there are also women who fall into this hotep trap, right? What do they call them on a Black lady--
Kenrya: Herteps. That's a thing too.
Quinn: Yeah. Well dick isn't gender specific, by the way, you know.
Kenrya: I know, so--
Quinn: So you could be strapping it up but--
Kenrya: Real shit.
Quinn: I do think that definitely, if we're talking about the context of people other than me and then our hoteps, they still believe in that hierarchy and that structure of relationships. So they still contribute to these harmful ways in any possible way. And the goal is, I don't want to be the bottom of the totem pole so am always find someone lower than me. So, for hoteps it's--
Kenrya: I'm sorry y'all, I'm going to say one thing. I always try to do things in the moment. So using the term totem pole is actually derogatory.
Quinn: Oh. You are right.
Kenrya: Yeah. So let's use a ladder or just hierarchy or whatever. So yeah, but they want to climb to the top of the ladder. Right? They want to be at the top of the hierarchy.
Quinn: Exactly. And they also want to make sure that they have someone to look down upon. So for herteps you usually see, especially Black women of a certain demographic, like an age group, you usually see that antagonism that Black men have towards Black women with black women is usually against trans persons and the LGBTQ community and--
Kenrya: Somebody who they perceive to be lower on the hierarchy than they are.
Quinn: Exactly. Unmarried women, young mothers, people like this who just reject very specific structures and hierarchies that they have believed in.
Kenrya: So what can folks do to disentangle themselves from these hoteps?
Quinn: I mean obviously phone a friend, if you feel like you get too dick whipped or ass whipped should I say. And I think that it's really important for you to have a really good, when you can, right? We're not talking about relationships where you're 17, 18 and you're developing who you are. But if you have a very solid sense of who you are before you go into a relationship with a person like this, it will be really easy for you to not have your core shaken so much up by them. You know what I'm saying? With earthquakes, they put the damn poles deep in the ground, and so even when the earth moves the foundation doesn't have to. And I think it's important for you if you're going to be dating as an adult person to just at least go into relationships where you know who you are because you're going to be constantly tested by hoteps or herteps or just regular people about shit you think you already know about you. And if you already are protected and well grounded, you'll be all right. And you'll know that this person's full of shit. Now if you like most of us who don't have the core sense of self before you start dating, you learn on the way, right? So having friends reflect things back to you. But you have to be honest and we have to eliminate the shame of fucking up in relationships. So you have to be honest with your friendship circle. Also be honest with, if you have a therapist or a pastor or someone you're close to that you can download some of this stuff about. Lean into them and just be able to say like, this is what's going on with my person and when shit is abnormal, they will tell you. I've been thinking this story was normal, my whole fucking twenties and, thirties well, I'm only 31, but 20 and 30. But I have tell people that one of my exes who was a hotep who is a doctor here in the DMV area actually. I met him through his girlfriend which, I was fucking his girlfriend and then I got him. So I mean.
Quinn: I mean, so I got hooked up with him and I remember thinking he was a doctor so he knew everything he was talking about, right? And so I'll never forget after he was telling me something about how women should talk to men and his mom always bent her knee to his father when he came into the house after a long day, it's shit like that. I'll never forget, I was talking to people about just a random story and I was like, yeah, he put some hand sanitizer on his dick instead of taking a bath.
Kenrya: What? My God.
Quinn: I will never forget this, about two months ago I just found out that wasn't normal. I'm sitting there laughing at this story with my wife about another part of the story and my wife is sitting there looking at my friend's face and I'm moved on and they all laughing and I'm like, damn, this is a good story I'm telling. They all said, "That's not normal. What are you talking about? How did you skip that?" And your friends, if you're honest with your friends about what's going on, they will call it out. Whether it's comical or not, that doesn't matter. But I have people in my life where I can reflect these experiences back to, and they can give me some feedback about it. But that didn't happen if I wasn't willing to be vulnerable.
Kenrya: Which is tough. Right? Especially because we're taught that that's a weakness.
Quinn: Yeah, we're conditioned to think that we have to be strong.
Kenrya: Right, absolutely. So for folks who are like us, well, I'll speak for myself, I turn to books for solutions and plans all the time, I'm a nerd. Do you have any book recommendations for folks who may need some help with dealing with the issues that may arise either from dealing with somebody like this or to give them a grounding to be able to disentangle themselves?
Quinn: Absolutely. My favorite books to prescribed to clients are "The Body Keeps The Score" and "Facing Co-dependence." So, Body Keeps The Score is mostly centered around physical trauma and the disconnect between your brain and body when these things happen to you. And how your body responds in one way, your brain responds in another and it's really good to see people really understand these two things don't always work in tandem. And sometimes my body is telling me this isn't a good relationship. Why am I in this relationship? Your body is always tired and crying. Well, you're always crying and you're sick or you can't get aroused as much as you used to because your body is trying to give you these clues. Your brain though will tell you this is the best relationship you've been in. He hasn't hit you. What's wrong with that? Is this relationship so bad. She isn't doing nothing as bad as your last partner. And so being able to show them the disconnect that your brain and your body will have and how to learn to understand your complete language that your body is giving you is really important.
Quinn: Facing Codependency is one of my favorite is because one, all my black women have resistance to that book. I have never prescribed that book to a black woman at this point. It's like 112 women that I prescribed this book to. Every single one of them gets angry. Every single one of them is like, this--
Kenrya: I mean the word codependency is scary.
Quinn: Yeah, especially because for us, we're conditioned to think that we're supposed to be hyper independent and that word codependent seems incongruent with what we think about ourselves. But without getting too much into that, being super independent is a form of codependency. So I'm just like, okay, sure.
Kenrya: Why are you so loud Quinn.
Quinn: All right, sure. Single independent woman don't need no man. I get it. I fuck with it. However, let's just talk about why. And that's where I always get the resistance. But those two books really give you a snapshot of your interpersonal relationships with the co-dependence one and also how you feel with the body Keeps the score one.
Kenrya: Oh, thank you.
Quinn: You're welcome.
Erica: So as we prepare to close, we'd like to ask you one final really tough question. It’s a would you rather, so would you rather be in a relationship with a hotep or in a relationship with a person, a Black person that swears they don't see color.
Quinn: Okay. So the kind of relationship, all that shit is the same, right? Short term, long term, whatever. It don't matter.
Quinn: Just would I rather spend my evening talking to somebody about how Bill Cosby tried to buy NBC or.
Kenrya: You know that happened to me for real.
Quinn: Somebody, It has happened to all of us. It happened to me talking to other therapists.
Kenrya: Oh, shit.
Quinn: So, yes. Never forget that. I thought that was just a Twitter thing until somebody said that shit to me in real life. I was like, you're too old to be stupid. They just are. You've been around long enough to read books.
Kenrya: We know that doesn't matter.
Quinn: Spend my day thinking about that. Or somebody that just, Ooh, probably tucks they shirt in real high, wear they pants real high. They probably wear--
Erica: Ugh armpits sweat stains on they pants.
Quinn: Ducks unlimited, them ducks, the mallards that be on them belts, they probably wear something like that, or wear they shades with a band or string rim. Oh my God, at least with a hotep I'm going to have a good time. I think I might, the food going to be seasoned and I'm not like, just think about somebody who don't see race, the food they eat, they probably drink milk. Oh my God. I just, Oh, that feels so boring. I would just be so disappointed to have missionary sex with the lights off, just to be in a relationship with this loser. So, no.
Kenrya: So you're going with a hotep.
Quinn: I would rather hertep, by the way.
Quinn: I'd rather deal with a stud with these problems. Nah, that'd be much worse. Let's... I'll go with a hotep. I'll go with a hotep man. I'll take that for 300. Probably how much money he going to owe me when we broke up.
Kenrya: Bitch, exactly. Yo, we're so glad that you've joined us today. Where can people find you?
Quinn: Yeah, you can find me on my social media, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook is @magnoliamheath. my website is magnoliamhealth.com. Also heybgirl.com. You can send me a Email all of my contact information is on my website and on my social media pages.
Kenrya: That's dope. Well, this wraps up this week's episode of The Turn On. Thanks you all for joining us. Peace.
Quinn: Thank you for having me.
Erica: Thank you.
Erica: This episode was produced by us, Erica and Kenrya and edited by B'.Lystic The theme song is from Brazy. First please leave a review in your favorite podcast listening app. For real we want to hear from you all. Send your book recommendations and all the burning sex and related questions you want us to answer to firstname.lastname@example.org. And please subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast app. Follow us on Twitter at the @TheTurnOnPod and Instagram @TheturnOnPodcast and find links to books, transcripts, guest info, and other fun stuff at TheTurnOnPodcast.com. Bye.
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In Episode 6 of The Turn On, we read an excerpt from "Let Me Free You" by Alexandria House and discuss marriage proposals, dating hoteps and getting out of our own heads.
The Turn On participates in affiliate programs, which provide a small commission when you purchase products via links on this site. This costs you nothing, but helps support the show. Click here for more information.
Kenrya: Come here. Get off.
Erica: Welcome to this week's episode of The Turn On. Today we are reading “Let Me Free You,” which was published in 2018, by Alexandria House. Get your wine, get your weed, get whatever you need, and sit back, relax, and enjoy. That's right, welcome back. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back.
Kenrya: We're going to have break her from this, y'all.
Kenrya: “Let Me Free You,” by Alexandria House.
"This is nice, I didn't know there was a Stable Inn Resort here, but I'm glad we're staying in a Black-owned establishment," Neil shared. I nodded, eyeing a huge bed, "Yeah." "You tired? You want to lay down for a while, take a nap? It's been a long day," he asked, as I took in the rest of the beautiful suite. "No, I'm good, I'm not really that tired at all," I replied. "Really?" "Yeah, but I need to take a shower, I'm really grimy after all that dancing." He plopped down in the bed and fell onto his back, "All right, I'm going to take one after you."
In the huge glass-encased shower, as I closed my eyes and let the hot water beat against my skin, I told myself that whenever this sex thing went down, if it wasn't good, I'd be okay with it. I mean, sex wasn't everything, and if he didn't annul my ass, he had done me a huge favor. Shit, he didn't really even know me like that to be marrying me. I mean, after all the pussy, time, and effort I put into my past relationships, none of those niggas had met me at the altar. Assholes.
And the chief asshole was Gavin, this motherfucker had said some horrible stuff to me when I asked him to marry me, some stuff that really messed with my head and had me feeling like I was subhuman. And when I cried about it, he ... at first I felt a draft, and then I felt the heat of his body and my eyes popped open. Spinning around, my eyes widened, and I stuttered, "What? Neil," I don't know why I said that, maybe his fineness was messing with my brain because he was naked, and, good Lord, this man was fine as all hell and heaven and everywhere in between.
"Were you expecting someone else?" "No, I thought you were going to take a shower when I was done." "I ain't in here to take a shower." My eyes dropped to watch him stroke his nice, long, veiny dick, and then shot back up to his face as he said, "I'm in here to fuck my sexy ass wife." My yoni started throbbing as if it was dancing to a high-octane club banger, and my hands began to shake, moisture collected in my mouth like I was a lion staring at a gazelle in the Serengeti. And through no will of my own, I grabbed his face and pulled it down to mine, kissing him with the fervor of a woman who had never seen an exposed erect penis before.
He backed me up under the shower head into the wall, and despite the fact that I knew without a doubt I was messing up my hair, I didn't stop him. We kissed wildly, passionately. No, passionately is too weak a word because this nigga actually bit my tongue, and my lip, and he was growling while squeezing my breast, and I liked all of it. Hell, I loved it. He ended the kiss, and as my chest rose and fell rapidly, he planted one hand on the shower wall beside my head while using the fingers of the other hand to explore my yoni, parting my lips to find my clit.
He rubbed it, holding my eyes hostage and biting his bottom lip as he slid a finger inside me, making my knees buckle. Then he kissed me again, slipping his finger in and out of me while circling my clit with his thumb, gradually increasing the speed of his fingers until it fell frenzied. There was more than one finger inside me now, two, three? And he was touching a spot that felt different, some uncharted territory inside me that made me feel good and uncomfortable at the same time, hella uncomfortable and hella good.
He had me feeling like I had to pee and cum simultaneously, it was confusing in a wonderful way. "Oh, shit," I yelled into his mouth. My entire body vibrated with a feeling that was alien to me. It was like I was having a damn global orgasm. My scalp was tingling, it felt like heat was enveloping me, and an electricity shock through my body as I shuttered uncontrollably. He grabbed me with his free hand to keep me from falling as the other hand continued to assault me. "Yeah, baby, feel it," he kept saying, his deep voice coarse, "Feel it."
What the fuck was this? I mean, it'd never been hard for me to orgasm, but this shit? This was beyond an orgasm. This was ... This was spiritual. And it went on and on and on. When my body finally came down, I collapsed into his arms, and I swear on everything, I think I passed out. I woke up naked and in the dark, lying alone in the bed. At first, I lay there staring at the ceiling, then felt eyes on me and turned to my left.
"Neil?" I couldn't see him, but I was sure he was there. "I'm here, baby." I felt my body relax at that reassurance. "How long have I been asleep?" "A couple of hours." "Damn." "A g-spot orgasm will do that to you, that plus the long-ass day we had." "That's what that was? I thought that was some coochie hooodo or something, I could've sworn you put a sex hex on me." He laughed, "Nah, baby. You never had a orgasm like that before?" "No, never. That was ... That was crazy. Good, but crazy. Did you ... Did you get off, too?" "No." "Oh, you didn't want to?" "You blacked out, I'm not in business of having sex with unconscious women." "That makes sense. So, you've just been sitting there while I sleep?" "Mm-hmm." "Okay."
"Sage?" "Yeah?" "I'd like to eat your pussy." "Shit, you would?" "Yeah, I want to taste you." "Damn. Knock yourself out, I ain't going to stop you." With a chuckle, he left the chair, and in the darkness I felt him pull the covers off me. I opened my legs for him, squeezed my eyes tightly shut, felt his tongue flatten against my clit, and hoped he would and wouldn't do the g-spot thing again. I mean, I wouldn't have minded feeling it, but I wasn't try to spend my entire honeymoon unconscious.
My honeymoon, ain't that some shit? "Mmm," he moaned, as he worked some more of that coochie hoodoo with his tongue. "Mmm," I whined, wiggling beneath him. He licked and sucked me into an orgasm pretty quickly, then lifted from me and asked, "You always cum that quick?" "Yeah, most of the time." "Shit," then he was in my face and my scent on his breath as he kissed me and then hovered over me, his eyes burning into mine, "I love the way you taste." "Thank you."
"You still good with no condom, like we discussed?" "Yeah, we know each other's status, traded results, and I'm on the pill, so ..." "Shit," he was inside me with one quick thrust, taking advantage of my orgasm-induced lubrication, and a little whimper escaped his mouth. My brow furrowed as he stared down at me, pulling back and sinking into me again. "Damn, baby," he mumbled, "Shit, and you feel gooder than a motherfucker." I closed my eyes and tried to hold the orgasm that had literally started building on contact, but I couldn't, and was soon contracting and spasming around him.
"Neal," I screamed in my daddy's voice, my daddy's Liberian voice. Shit, he was right. "Shit, yo, I'm not ready," he screamed, sounding panicked. "Oh, damn, I'm sorry, it's just so good." He shut his eyes as if he was concentrating, and kept going, grunting, moaning, whimpering, and kissing me as he worked my pussy like a damn physics equation, rocking in and out of me as orgasm after orgasm rolled over me. "You making this hard for me, baby," he grunted, "I want to stay in this good motherfucker, but I can't hold out any long ... Oh, fuck." He stiffened and grunted as I felt him grow and pulsate inside of me. And then he collapsed onto my body, breathing heavily as he said, "God damn."
As I awakened the next morning, the first thing I was aware of was his arms around me, and I smiled, snuggling closer to him and breathing in his scent. He felt and smelled so good, like a dream, but he was my reality now, he was my husband. I heard him moan a little as he adjusted his body in the bed and loosened his grip on me, rubbing his hand up and down my back, "Mmm, grand rising, baby." As my smile grew wider, I replied, "Grand rising, Neil."
Erica: Welcome back, we just heard an excerpt from Let Me Free You, which was published in 2018, by Alexandria House. This story is an excerpt from a larger book, and the book is a part of a much larger series, called the McClain Brothers. So, Kenrya, can you give us a little bit of background on this particular book?
Kenrya: Sure. So, this book has two stars, the guy's name is Neil McClain, he's one of the aforementioned McClain brothers, and it opens with him getting out of rehab. So, we find out that he's been going through it, he's been boozing, and all of this stuff, after he came out of his last relationship, he didn't really want to deal with the emotions of it all, so he numbed himself with substances. And so now he's trying to make a new start.
Kenrya: The book is really cool because it alternates chapters, so like a he-said, she-said kind of a situation, and so the she in the book is Sage. And Sage is an immigrant from Liberia, and she has just found out that she's being deported and has to go back home unless she can figure out a way to stay in the United States. Their friends bring them together, and hijinx ensue. Not really.
Erica: Dot, dot, dot.
Kenrya: Yes. A bunch of sex and marriage ensues, actually.
Erica: Okay. Cool. So, Sage, as I walk us through this excerpt that we read, one of the first things that stood out was that Sage said she previously asked a man to marry her.
Erica: I know you divest yourself of the patriarchal bullshit-
Kenrya: I do.
Erica: But how do you feel about that, how do you feel about a woman asking a man to marry her?
Kenrya: I don't have any feels about it one way or the other. I mean, shit, if you feel so moved that you wanted to take the first step, I think the thing about it that feels scary, and I think it would probably feel scary for me, as if I were a man, too, is the amount of vulnerability that it takes to ask somebody to marry you.
Erica: Yeah, I mean I always feel like ... Well, I am very traditional in that sense. If you waiting for me to ask you to marry me-
Kenrya: You would never do it.
Erica: We ain't never getting married. Like, no, you're the man, you kill bugs, you take out trash, you ask me to marry you. But, now that you put it like that, I do think it does take a level of vulnerability. I remember hearing guys talk about being nervous that they're going to ask a woman to marry them, and I'm kind of like, "But don't you already know the answer?"
Kenrya: I mean, apparently not because bitches say no all the time. Remember that clip that was circulating on Twitter, where a dude proposed to the chick in public and she was like, "I'm sorry, I can't." You know what ended up coming out later was that he had been cheating on her, and that was like his last ditch, manipulative ass, let-me-do-this-and-maybe-she'll-stay-with-me bullshit, and thank God she saw through it and was like, "No."
Erica: That's a whole different ball of wax.
Erica: But I mean, we're together, we're in a good place-
Kenrya: We've probably been talking about getting married.
Erica: We've probably been talking about it. I mean, if you're smart, you did went looking at rings, I mean I also feel like that's a big step, when you just buy a ring. I mean I guess you kind of know the person.
Kenrya: Yeah, I don't want to pick out my ring, you know what kind of ring I like, so if this nigga's smart, he going to talk to you.
Erica: I do?
Kenrya: Bitch, you supposed to, I feel like we had this conversation before, I'm going to have to send you pictures.
Erica: Yeah, I mean, I would just-
Kenrya: You know, I'm real simple, I just want to-
Kenrya: Listen, let me say it now, because he listening to the show. I'm real simple, I like a solitaire, I don't want no extra stones, none of that, just a nice rose gold band, and a beautiful bright diamond, that's it.
Erica: Yeah, I'm trifling, so I would-
Erica: Yeah, I would have definitely gone, "Was this sustainably sourced?"
Kenrya: That's right.
Erica: But, also, I would have definitely gone for the rose gold, but, see ... it would have been simple, I'm a simple gal, so I wouldn't have wanted you to have a whole bunch of extra shit.
Kenrya: What? Wait, what? She lying on this podcast.
Erica: However, I definitely would have been like, "Big," "What does she want?" "Big and bright, the brightest, clearest, biggest one you can get."
Kenrya: I don't need it to be big, I don't want to be ... Like, remember the ring that Gucci Mane bought what's-her-name? Keyshia Ka'oir?
Erica: We know we're not there, right?
Kenrya: I'm just saying. That shit's scary, I don't want nothing that I be like- Exactly. No judgment, but, nah, I don't want nothing crazy.
Erica: Yeah, I don't need nothing that big.
Kenrya: But, just, yeah, a simple stone. But, anyway.
Erica: Okay, well. Back to ... Where the fuck were we?
Kenrya: We were saying that you should have already had some conversations, but I still feel like ... like, even if you think about the other milestones that come in a relationship, before you get to the point of that, having the "I love you" conversation. Like, you can feel it all day, right, and you can know it in your bones that you love this person and that that person loves you, but it's still scary as hell to leap off the cliff and say it the first time.
Kenrya: Why you looking like that?
Erica: Because it's not for me.
Kenrya: Saying "I love you"?
Kenrya: What do you mean?
Erica: Not it's no big deal, but if I feel it, I'm going to say it.
Erica: It's not like a scary thing. Because if I feel it, I'm going to say it.
Kenrya: Yeah, you know I got all this vulnerability issues.
Erica: Yeah, I'm not like-
Kenrya: Because I work really hard at being vulnerable.
Erica: Because, also, I don't ... when I say it, I say it with the "This is how I feel about you" not expecting-
Kenrya: Right, you don't have to ... Absolutely.
Erica: To hear it back. I mean, it would be nice, but at the same time, if you don't say it, it's like-
Kenrya: I'm not going to be crushed or it's not going to be a deal-breaker.
Erica: Yeah, I'm not going to be crushed. Now, if I done say it and then, you know, four, five years down the line you ain't said it-
Kenrya: Ooh, God.
Erica: Well, shit ain't going to get that ... but you know.
Erica: If we get down the line and you haven't said it, then I'll be like, "What's going on here?"
Kenrya: Right, but then that's another conversation.
Erica: If I'm the first one to say it, I'm just going to say it, and that's probably ... I don't want to say part of my problems, but I definitely do-
Kenrya: I don't think it's ever a problem to be able to make yourself vulnerable.
Erica: But you also don't want to put, now that I think about it more, you don't want to put pressure on someone to feel like they have to say it, but I also feel like if you were rocking with me, if you love me, if you know me, you know that-
Kenrya: You're going to say it.
Erica: Erica going to say what the fuck's on her mind.
Kenrya: Right. True.
Erica: Be like, "You sort your shit out." All right, so, you're ... I don't know, whatever's clever.
Kenrya: Yeah, whoever can get up the nerve, and feels confident, and wants to be the one to push the situation forward, I'm all for it, I would never ... I don't know, I mean it's hard for me to put myself in a, somebody who identifies as the man's shoes, to say how I would feel about that, but I also feel like if that would make you feel a way, that a woman would ask you to marry them, then maybe you're not ready for marriage.
Erica: I just feel like ... I mean I wish I could sound eloquent about it, but, no, you're a man-
Kenrya: That's not what you want.
Erica: You're supposed to ask me.
Kenrya: So, let me ask you this, what's the difference between you being the first person to say "I love you" because you're feeling it and you want to do it, and you being the person to say, "You know what, I'd like to marry you" because you're feeling it and you want to say it?
Erica: I mean, there's probably no difference, but, again-
Kenrya: Well, no, there is though because you're okay with one but not the other, yeah.
Erica: Well, yeah, patriarchy, I'm still holding on to that bit of whatever was beaten in my head as a young child, shout out to Granny.
Kenrya: Rest in peace.
Erica: Hey, Granny. Yeah, I mean, it's still you kill bugs, you take out trash, and you ask me to marry you. I mean, and, again, we probably will have had that conversation ... I mean, when I got married my first time around, my first and only time around, we had the conversation multiple times, it was just a matter of when it would happen, and I think it had gotten to a point where it was like I knew it was coming and looking around a corner every minute.
Kenrya: Yeah, that was fun.
Erica: Whatever, bitch.
Kenrya: It was fun. We planned the whole situation.
Erica: I definitely remember we went to get ice cream one night, and we were walking back, and he was like, "This is a nice park, let's sit down," I like sat down and started hyperventilating, "It's happening," and then he was like, "Nah, it was just nice, and I wanted to sit down." But, anyway.
Kenrya: That's funny.
Erica: Yeah, I mean, I definitely ... I'm still old-fashioned, but I mean I still hold on to a lot of that because I am very much a "If you my man, I'm going to cook you a meal," you know? Like, that is still part of who I am. Yeah, it's kind of, I don't want to say it's kind of against some of my other views, but-
Kenrya: Don't judge yourself.
Erica: Yeah, but it's just one of the layers that make me a complex little piece of baklava. I was going to say onions, but they stank.
Kenrya: But they so good.
Erica: Baklava's good.
Kenrya: I don't think I've ... I think I'm probably allergic to-
Erica: Yeah, there's pistachios in it.
Kenrya: Yeah, nope, can't have that. When I got married, engaged, whatever, it was-
Erica: A decision.
Kenrya: Yeah, well ... Because, remember ... I was telling him about a friend who was here on a student visa, and she and her partner were planning to get married, but not soon enough, and so they just went to the courthouse and got married so that she would be able to stay in the country long enough for them to go through, you know, do the whole thing that they already had planned. He was like, "We should just go do that." And I was like, "Okay." And then a week later, I had a marriage license, and then a couple days after that-
Erica: I was taking a train up to the city.
Kenrya: Exactly. And then I was married. There was no real ask, it really was just like, "Okay, we're going to do this, all right."
Erica: Do you want an ask in the future?
Kenrya: I do, yeah, I want an ask. And that might be part of the vulnerability part, you know? Like, why it feels like a ... because of the way that it happened before.
Erica: You know, we talked about this a little bit when we were talking about just romanticism, and how so often we want to be the cool, the easy-going, the-
Kenrya: The cool girl.
Erica: The cool girl. And so it's like, "I don't like flowers, because I'm a cool girl." No-
Kenrya: "I don't like Valentine's Day, that's corny."
Erica: I fucking love Valentine's Day, I want big ostentatious displays of your affection for me, and make it happen. So, I think it's great that you're honest with yourself and saying, "No, I want an ask."
Kenrya: I do. I don't know that I want a big public thing, that feels a little ... even though I would say yes if it was ... you know what I mean?
Erica: Yeah, showy.
Kenrya: Yeah. But I don't think I need that whole thing, but I just want something-
Erica: So, we'll scratch Nat's Ballpark out the-
Kenrya: Oh, God, that sounds terrible to me, personally.
Erica: Yeah, we'll scratch that off, but we will make sure we get-
Kenrya: Just something romantic and sweet and thoughtful, that actually seems like it's about asking me, and not just any person, you know what I mean?
Kenrya: So, yeah, I do want that.
Erica: Okay. That's cool. That's sweet. Okay, so, let's get to the nasty part of the story.
Erica: He growled.
Kenrya: And bit her, and I was like, "Yes, bite."
Erica: Yeah, when she said growling, I was like, "Ooh, yeah." There's something about when you're having sex with someone, like I enjoy someone talking shit, but just being in it, like looking in your eye, growling, yes. Growling? Oh my God.
Kenrya: Where it's clear they can't contain themselves, like being able to hear and see and feel that? Yeah.
Erica: Yeah, yeah. Do you grunt, growl, moan?
Kenrya: I am a moaner, I am loud. I am not a "Yeah," I am not a "We fin' do this real quiet in this space," because I also, when I'm in it, I'm like, "I don't give a fuck, let's go." So, there's very often a pillow that is handed to me.
Erica: "Shut up, bitch."
Kenrya: And I'm like, "Don't give a fuck, let's do this." Yeah, I'm a all-of-the-sounds-er. Yeah, I'm pretty fucking loud.
Erica: Well, your nickname for this episode is "Sounder." Wasn't that a dog?
Kenrya: Isn't that a fucking dog?
Erica: Yeah. New, like, "Old Yeller," ABC Family cousin-
Kenrya: But it was Black ... No, it was like-
Erica: Oh, okay, well then fuck that, he's the real Old Yeller.
Kenrya: Yes, exactly.
Erica: He's the OG Old Yeller. Fuck a Old Yeller. I think I ... I make noise. Yeah, I make lots of noise.
Erica: Yeah, but it's more just a like ... I work out-
Kenrya: So, you be sore?
Erica: No, but it's one of those, like, when you breathe through ... you know, like, when you do yoga, and they're like, "Breathe through the stretch," like I am like breathing through the action, you know? Like, shit, you got to ... girl, some good breathing will get that-
Kenrya: Oh, it'll get you there, absolutely.
Erica: Yeah, get that orgasm from your pussy to your toenail.
Kenrya: You know, I'm a "Oh, fuck" can't contain myself.
Erica: No, I definitely-
Kenrya: I'm screaming, yeah.
Erica: Yeah, I make noise like that, but it's a lot of like, "Ohh," which is so weird because when I'm in yoga and they're like, "Bend over. Now breathe through it," that's sounds like me fucking.
Kenrya: That's what it sounds like. That's funny.
Erica: That and macaroni and cheese. You remember that someone was like, "Good sex sound like you stirring a pot of macaroni and cheese"?
Kenrya: Yes. Oh, God.
Erica: Sex with me sounds like-
Kenrya: Both making it and eating it?
Erica: Doing yoga over a pot of macaroni and cheese. Have you blacked out during sex?
Kenrya: No, I have never blacked out during sex. However, I'm usually super unsteady after. Like, try to get up, bitch, hold on to this doorframe. Like, depleted.
Erica: Yeah, I mean, I don't think I've ever blacked out, I thought it was really cool how he was like, "I'm not really cool with-
Kenrya: Fucking an unconscious woman. Yeah, I was like, "Thank you. Consent."
Erica: Fucking consenting. And I thought it was great that she wrote that in there.
Kenrya: Yeah, and that they had a quick conversation about condoms, as well.
Erica: Yes. Again, we will always highlight those kinds of things-
Erica: Because I feel like that makes it-
Erica: Adds to the authenticity of it.
Erica: I have never blacked out during sex, but I have definitely had such powerful orgasms where I kind of like see stars, and I'm like, "Wait, hold on. What's happening here?"
Kenrya: Yeah, where you just feel kind of dizzy-
Erica: Just kind of like ... I mean I guess you could ... I mean, I've blacked out, but not like collapsed out, woke up three hours later, "What happened?" But just on some like, "Whoa, shit, hey, we here."
Kenrya: Yeah, or like, "Wait, I need a minute, I can't keep going because they didn't cum yet, but I need a minute."
Erica: Yeah, "Don't touch me. Don't touch me-
Kenrya: Yes, "Before I can do this again," absolutely.
Erica: Was it because of him, or something you were doing?
Kenrya: I mean, I like to think of it as a dance. So, a little bit of both. It's usually a combination of ... So, it depends on the position, because I have different types of orgasms, obviously, depending on the position.
Erica: Uh-huh (affirmative).
Kenrya: So, like-
Erica: Eyes in the back of my head thing, uh-huh, uh-huh.
Kenrya: So, it'll depend on the position, how much tension I'm able to get going in my limbs, because that's really key, how hard he's holding me. If I can yell, because I actually find that when I have to suppress my sound, the orgasm is not as intense because I'm literally keeping myself from feeling the full complements of it because I can't react to it all the way. So, when there are no children in the house, and I can just let loose, I find that it is a stronger orgasm. So, it's like a combination of things. What about you?
Erica: I've never thought about ... Yeah, I'm not really fucking with my kids in the crib.
Kenrya: Yeah, yeah, yeah, in the house.
Erica: Yeah, I guess you're right, it is a complement of it all. I'm pretty good at making it happen, I'm pretty good at just, "Oh, I'm cumming today."
Erica: But the black-out ones, yeah, it's a combination of everything that has gone into it. It's typically, also, after just a ignorant I'm-about-to-tap-out round of foreplay, where it's just like, "Whew, I can't take this no more and the dick coming?" Wooh.
Kenrya: Yeah, yeah.
Erica: The black-out orgasms are usually complemented by a nigga growling in my ear.
Kenrya: Okay, so, I have recently discovered that my ear is a big ... like, I never-
Erica: Like, licking it? Or, like, talking?
Kenrya: Like, talking in it.
Erica: Yeah, uh-huh.
Kenrya: Real close, where I can fucking feel the breath-
Erica: So I can feel your hot breath in my ear, oh my God.
Kenrya: Yo, I had never ... that was never a thing I had ever done with anybody, and that is something that my partnered introduced like a month ago, and I can't ... sometimes I legit be like, "Yo, you not allowed to do that tonight," like, "I can't take that. I'm not allowed to be as loud as I need to be tonight-
Erica: I was about to say, how you going to stop that man?
Kenrya: Because, God, it's so intense, in concert with everything else that is happening, that I can't.
Erica: See, there is nothing like just minding your business-
Kenrya: Ooh, fuck.
Erica: Cooking, doing something, minding your business, and a nigga walking up to, grabbing you by the ass and whispering something nasty in your ear, like hot growly in your ear.
Erica: Oh my gosh. I'm like, "Fuck that spaghetti."
Kenrya: I had never experienced that before, and I was like, "Oh my God." Such a simple thing, but it takes things over the top, in a really good way.
Erica: It's really cool how you're realizing new, what is it, erogenous, androgynous-
Kenrya: Erogenous zones.
Erica: Erogenous zones. Androgynous zones.
Kenrya: I mean, that, too. At this ripe age of my-
Erica: This ripe age. That is why we're here, this is an exploration. So, we ain't doing it right if we're not learning new things.
Kenrya: It's true.
Erica: So, there was this part in the story where she talks about ... Alexandria does a great job of describing all the different senses that go into a really good session. And she's like, "I got to pee, but I don't," all the little bits of information feeding into your brain and what that feels like in your body, she dud ... dud, past tense of did, the super past tense of did ... which does a really great job of just adding to the sensuality-
Kenrya: And putting you right there.
Kenrya: And connecting it, probably, to a past experience, right, because you can go, "I remember when I felt that thing."
Erica: Yeah, because you're ... especially with someone ... because I think, for me, what stood out about this scene with the two of them is that she was just so surprised, I mean because she seems like the type of woman, the way it's written, she seems like the type of woman that knows her own body, and knows what to do and how to do it-
Kenrya: Yeah, especially because she kept saying that she cums quickly, I'm like, "Oh, well you got some ..." you know, because most people, that's not really a thing, it takes a while to be able to get to that point.
Erica: Yeah. And she knows what to feel and all of that, but he tapped into something different, and was able to make her feel good in all these different ways, when she was like, "I'm uncomfortable, yet loving it and wanting it, but not wanting him to do it again."
Kenrya: And a little scared, yeah. And it was their very first time having sex.
Kenrya: Which, again, not a common thing. Ooh.
Kenrya: So, have you ever, like the very first time you had sex with somebody, had it be like some you-see-stars shit, like the first time? Like, how common is that for you? Or does it usually take a few times of getting to know each other's bodies before you can get to that?
Erica: Generally, yeah. My current partner, the first time, it was like, "Oh, shit." Part of it could have been ... Part of it probably was because we are at a distance, we're long-distance, so we had to do a lot of talking, and so he already knew what I liked, and I already knew what he liked, and so we kind of came in with crib notes. But, even with that, it was just like ... you know, men, I feel like some guys really know how to put effort into pleasing their partner. And then, other times, they swear they know what they doing, and it's like-
Kenrya: Nigga ...
Erica: You were just stabbing at my pussy, you know? And I feel like my partner knew, like it just ... it was a dance, and we both knew each other's situation, and so, yeah, the first time, it was like, "Whoa. Oh, this what you doing, this is pretty fucking dope." And I do find that ... I hate to sound ... well, fuck it. If it's not good from the beginning, then-
Kenrya: It's hard for you to want to go back to that, yeah.
Erica: It's hard for me to want to go back. And I mean I'm not saying it has to be seeing stars, but I'm saying that there's got to be some sort of rhythm. I mean it's like dancing-
Kenrya: It can't be awkward, right?
Kenrya: Like, if it seems like y'all can't at all, y'all not listening to the same song, then maybe you will never be able to listen to the same song.
Erica: Yeah, and I'm not going to listen to that song again with you.
Erica: Yeah, no, I'm good. Because dick is abundant and low in value. If yo' dick ain't working right with me, then I can go back to the steaming pile of trash-
Kenrya: Of dicks.
Erica: Shake another dick off and, "Let's see if this one works." What about you?
Kenrya: Yeah, typically, especially in the last few years, it's been good out the gate.
Erica: Do you think it's more you knowing your body?
Kenrya: I do.
Erica: Or just getting better ... your picker has gotten better?
Kenrya: You know, I think it's a combination of those two things. Yeah, I think I am much better at knowing what it is that I like, and being able to vocalize that, because I think sometimes you can know what it is but not be able to express it, and whether it's because you don't have the vocabulary or because you are somehow not able to assert yourself in that way, and I don't have that problem. And, yeah, I'm just picking better people to have sex with, I'm looking at the red flags that come up before that tell me that this person is a misogynist, or this person is awful in various ways, and able to know how that's going to translate to us fucking, and able to back out of that situation before it gets there.
Erica: Yeah, because, also, trash men are, a lot of times-
Kenrya: Sometimes they serve good dick.
Erica: Some of them serve good dick, but some of them are just trash garbage because, again, it is a give and take-
Kenrya: They're selfish.
Erica: Yeah, it's more than just you getting off. It's are you listening to how my body ... Do you hear my breath quickening? Do you hear the "Oh, shit"? Just listen and go with it, and if you're self-absorbed and narcissistic-
Kenrya: Then it's going to be-
Erica: My good midwestern tongue, sorry. Nine times out of 10, you're not listening for-
Kenrya: Right, for those things.
Erica: Those context clues about me giving you some.
Kenrya: Or you are, and you're narcicisstic and you're super manipulative, and you're able to hold it up because you can hold the mask for a little while, and then that shit falls, and it's revealed that it's literally all about you, you just did enough to get me hooked.
Kenrya: Yeah. So, yeah, my current situation, right out the fucking gate, it was wonderful. And it's great because, because we both enjoy it so much, we work, and, honestly, I'll be honest, he works more than I do at bringing new stuff in all the time, because ...
Erica: Yeah, you're like, "Uh."
Kenrya: I'm like, "This is great."
Erica: I have this book to edit.
Kenrya: Right. But he's really good at introing new shit without telling me until I feel it and I'm like, "Oh, shit. The fuck?" It's a nice surprise.
Erica: That is ... We're going to have to dig a little deeper into that one, in an upcoming episode. So, Sage, our protagonist, I'm going to learn the right word-
Kenrya: That's her name.
Erica: Our main character.
Kenrya: No, protagonist is good.
Erica: So, Sage, one of the things I also really like about this scene is that she cums a lot before he cums.
Kenrya: Yes, ma'am. Unapologetically.
Erica: Yeah, she's like, "Yeah." So, I cum quickly, too. Like, I kind of feel bad for men when they be like, "He cum quick," I'm like, "Meh. I do," like, "Why we going to be mad at him?" Like, I've literally like ... was having sex with this dude, the moment he put it in I came and I was like-
Kenrya: Had there been a bunch of foreplay before that?
Erica: It was like an ignorant amount of foreplay, I came multiple times during foreplay. And then the minute he stuck it in, I was like, "I ain't got it no more."
Kenrya: Oh, wait, so then you took your ball and went home?
Erica: No, I did not. I did not. But I was not playing ball as aggressively as I could have been because I was so-
Kenrya: Because you already got yours, you was tired, you was spent.
Erica: Girl, I was ... the reverberate, what's the refractory, olfactory period?
Kenrya: Refractory period.
Erica: I'm like somebody grandpa with these vocabulary terms. Defractionation periods. Anyway, it was just so bad. So, I love the fact that she came multiple times before he came, and the fact that he enjoyed-
Kenrya: Getting her there.
Erica: Getting her there.
Kenrya: Yeah, and it wasn't at all about, "Oh, well, you know, I need to get mine," he just was very focused on her cumming, and I like that when he was like, "I want to taste you," she was like, "Well, shit, I'm not going to stop you." It wasn't like, "Oh, well, you know, let me ... you already did me, let me do ..." uh-huh.
Erica: No, who am I to deny you your desires?
Kenrya: I mean ...
Erica: I am a bad bitch after all, why wouldn't you?
Kenrya: "Let's go." Yeah, I appreciated that.
Erica: Happy wedding.
Erica: Yeah. All right, so, one of the big themes in this story, and I actually find it funny, so this guy is a Hotep, and, to me, Hotep is a derogatory ... I mean, in the traditional-
Kenrya: We know it means "peace". Listen, we know what the word means.
Erica: But as a woman, as a Black woman, in the Washington, D.C. area, with a short natural hairdo, I attract my fair share of Hoteps.
Kenrya: Yo, same, with this afro.
Erica: Like, I have ... I remember, I went out with this guy, and we were at some restaurant, and he looks at me and is like, "You don't eat pork, right?" I was like-
Kenrya: "Based on what, my nigga?"
Erica: "Nigga ... What? I am from the Midwest." I personally feel like it is doing my ancestors a disservice if I don't eat pork. I was like, "How you just going to make that assumption?" But it was-
Kenrya: Based on your hair.
Erica: It was the hair. And so I have dated my fair share of Hoteps. In the story, I find it really funny that Sage has no problem calling Neil a Hotep-
Kenrya: Yeah, several times, yeah.
Erica: Like, "You a Hotep, right? What y'all do in Hotep land? Where'd you go to Hotep school?"
Kenrya: It felt very authentic in that this is an archetype of a man that I think most of us, living in metropolitan areas as Black women, have encountered at some point or another.
Kenrya: I really appreciated that, because I'd never seen him in print before.
Erica: Yeah, but ... Yes, and I think that Alexandria did a really good job of making him not full Hotep.
Kenrya: Yes, and, also, just not one note. Like, he's got a lot.
Erica: Yeah, because even when they have the "Are you a Hotep?" conversation, he was like, "I mean, can we not use that word?" because Hotep is-
Kenrya: He's like, "People tend to have this negative thing about it, and I think that some of them go way too far."
Erica: Exactly. And he was like, "I don't like the negative women stuff," and so I thought it was really great that that was a part of the conversation. So, have you dated-
Kenrya: Bitch, you can't even say it straight because you already know.
Erica: Kenrya, have you ever dated a Hotep?
Kenrya: Yes. Yes, I have. It was terrible.
Erica: What was the moment that you knew you were dating ... Like, what was your ... I mean, because the thing is you probably-
Kenrya: You're about to say something ignorant as fuck.
Erica: So, the thing is, we all know that we've dated Hoteps, but what is the moment where you look into the camera and be like-
Kenrya: "This nigga's a Hotep."
Erica: "I'm dating a Hotep."
Kenrya: I mean, the shady answer is the first time he said "lie-berry". I was like, "Oh, no."
Erica: "We going to the lie-berry."
Kenrya: Yeah, no. Honestly, it was when he started talking to me about polygamy. After we-
Erica: And you literally looked into the camera and was like, "This nigga a Hotep."
Kenrya: Yeah. Like, about how our lives could be easier, and he tried to give me a book from the master teacher, Malachi Z. York.
Erica: Was that the guy on the cult's episode?
Kenrya: Yes. Which I did not realize at the time, I was green as fuck, and I wasn't from New York, so I didn't know that this was like a whole ... like, the Nuwaubian Nation was like a fucking cult, like I didn't know any of these things, I just thought he was eccentric. But then he started bringing books home, and like legit trying to talk me into this ... I mean, eventually, I guess, he was trying to bring me into a cult. He was trying to talk me into this-
Erica: Cult, bitch, cult.
Kenrya: Yo. Yeah.
Erica: And the thing is, I think-
Kenrya: So, perhaps my situation was extreme.
Erica: But you said he was eccentric.
Kenrya: Yeah, I didn't take it seriously. I was ...
Erica: I think that there's always this balance between you got a guy, he's got his thing, this is a little weird, but whatever, I mean, you know ...
Kenrya: And I didn't know-
Erica: My man will probably be like, "Yeah, my girl sits in her closet with her best friend, talking about dicks, once a month." So, everyone has their thing that we don't quite understand, and so you try to respect it.
Erica: Especially when you love someone.
Kenrya: Well, and, also, I was in my 20s, like not to say that we're dummies in our 20s, but I didn't have a lot of life experience. And I had no idea ... Like, when I first met him, he was talking about metaphysics, and that should have been my clue. But I had never heard the word "Hotep" at that point, I didn't know any of the markers and signs to look for, I didn't know that misogyny is often a huge feature of these men, where they are very pro-Black, which is awesome, but that oftentimes what creeps in is that they are anti-woman. I didn't know any of these things, and I learned, over the course of a relationship that moved much too fast, that those were things that, for him at least, were a huge part of his outlook on life, and that they were obviously going to impact me because I was in close proximity to him.
Erica: Wooh, girl.
Kenrya: Yeah. So then, of course, once I was back out on the market in more recent times, like after being married, being divorced, dating again, going to therapy, doing the man sabbatical thing that we talked about on a previous episode, when I was finally healthy and able to come back to dating with a frame that was not codependent and actually had some concrete things that I was looking for and that I was not looking for, I ran smack dab into Hoteps. Like, as soon as I got on the apps; but, by then, I knew what to look for.
Erica: Yeah, because I think Hotep men are attractive, initially, because it's this the veneer of "I love Black women, I love Black people," and you're like, "Oh my gosh, finally someone that appreciates me for the things that I-
Kenrya: That you've gotten derision for before.
Kenrya: Yeah, they love your short hair, they love your natural hair, they love your dark skin, they love all these things, they say.
Erica: Yeah, but they don't love everything that's about you.
Kenrya: Or anything that feels like a challenge to them.
Erica: I like to talk about sucking dick, and it's okay. I like wearing pants, and it's okay.
Kenrya: I like not sharing my man, that's okay, too.
Erica: And that's okay; if you do, that's great. Find you that person, but that's not for-
Kenrya: Right. I always used to say, I was like, "This is not what I signed up for," I was like, "I don't have any problems with polygamy or polyamory or any of those things, as a structure, I think that they work for some people really well," I was like, "But that should have been a conversation that we had way in the beginning."
Erica: You can't throw polygamy on me, that's like ...
Kenrya: "That's not what I signed up for," that's what I used to always say.
Erica: You throwing "I don't eat pork" on me, okay, great, I'll figure something out. You saying, "Let me bring in another wife" is a whole different story-
Erica: If that's not what we-
Kenrya: Agreed upon to begin with. Exactly.
Kenrya: So, that was always my thing. I'm like, "If this is what works for you, you should find somebody that wants to live that life with you, and go be happy."
Erica: And you know what, I think, and maybe we'll just put a pin in this and delve a little deeper into it when we talk about polygamy and polyamory, but I think that there's a correlation between that and Hotepness, but I think that it's ... I don't know where I'm trying ... I'm trying to say it's not-
Kenrya: Well, the polygamy part of it, not the polyamory, because you can't fuck other people.
Erica: Exactly, that's what I'm trying to say. Like, I think you find, you run across some Hotep men that are all for multiple wives, and these throuples and all of that, but I think that gives-
Kenrya: As long as they have the only dick in the equation.
Erica: True polygamists and polyamorous people a bad name because from what I'm learning, and I am not in the lifestyle or whatever, but from what I'm learning, polygamists and polyamorous relationships take a lot of giving and sacrifice-
Kenrya: A lot of fucking communication, and honesty. Yeah.
Erica: Exactly. And I don't think that quite jives with Hotep men, in the sense of what we're talking about.
Kenrya: Yeah, I would agree, from what I've experienced.
Erica: Yeah. So, I'd like to dig-
Kenrya: Delve into that one day.
Erica: Dig into that a little deeper. Is there anything else about the story that stood out to you?
Erica: Okay, well, that is it for this episode of The Turn On.
Kenrya: Wait, y'all, so y'all can't see her nails, I've been sitting here looking at these hot-ass hot-pink nails-
Erica: Oh, these are my ho-pink nails.
Kenrya: Bitch, they are beautiful.
Erica: They're a little short, I'd definitely like ... I've realized that I like long dick-grabbing nails.
Erica: They're short just because I got a lot going on in my life, and I'd like to be able to-
Kenrya: Use your hands?
Erica: Use my hands, and not in a dick-grabbing sense, but they won't get cut for a while, and I definitely think I'm going to stick with this.
Kenrya: It's beautiful.
Erica: This is like Barbie hot pink. Thank you so much.
Kenrya: Yeah, they're great, I love them.
Erica: I got to show Munch because I know she'll-
Kenrya: She will appreciate.
Erica: Quick story. We're all on vacation, at dinner, her daughter looks me in the eye and is like, "I want to let my nails grow, but my momma won't let me."
Kenrya: Sweetie, I'm sitting right here.
Erica: She said it like, "This disrespectful woman."
Kenrya: I'm like, "You still in single digits, get away from me."
Erica: Okay, anyway, so, that wraps us up-
Kenrya: That wraps up.
Erica: For this week's episode of The Turn On. Thank you so much for joining us, these are your hosts, Erica and Kenrya, two hoes making it clap.
Erica: This episode was produced by us, Erica and Kenrya, and edited by B'Lystic. The theme song is from Brazy. First, please leave a review in your favorite podcast-listening app. For real, we want to hear from y'all, send your book recommendations and all the burning sex and related questions you want us to answer to TheTurnOnPodcast@gmail.com. And please subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast app. Follow us on Twitter, @TheTurnOnPod, and Instagram @TheTurnOnPodcast. And find lists of books, transcripts, guest info, and other fun stuff at TheTurnOnPodcast.com. Bye.
The Turn On
The Turn On is a podcast for Black people who want to get off. To open their minds. To learn. To be part of a community. To show that we love and fuck too, and it doesn't have to be political or scandalous or dirty. Unless we want it to be.