NSFW Sunday Is Your Friend With Benefits ?

All of the photographs in this NSFW Sunday are courtesy of @reneicespieces by @kenzicrash and have been used with permission. The inclusion of a photograph here should not be interpreted as an assertion of the model’s gender identity or sexual orientation. If you’re a photographer or model and think your work would be a good fit for NSFW Sunday, please email carolyn at autostraddle dot com.

Welcome to NSFW Sunday! Love is a lie and we all die alone.

+ What makes friends with benefits actually work? Be on the same page, sure, but mostly focus on the friendship part, says a new study:

“Ultimately, researchers found that in addition to sexual satisfaction, young adults who acted as if they were a couple, sacrificed personal interests for the betterment of their relationship, and spent less time looking for alternative partners reported being happy with their FWB situation. When they controlled for other variables, however, the study’s authors found that the only ‘significant predictor’ of contentment in a FWB relationship was being OK with doing something for someone else.

‘It shows a higher level of investment,’ says Jesse Owen, head of the counseling psychology department at the University of Denver and lead author on the study. ‘When people do that kind of activity, their FWB relationship tends to be better: They tend to have less strife and less conflict than other FWB relationships, and a lot of it is that sacrifice that most friends actually do for one another is as true as it is in FWB.’”

+ Here’s your August sex horoscope.

+ Sometimes you just leave your vibrator on the Metro, okay? That doesn’t mean you abandon it.

+ Sometimes sex toy companies go away to join the great big toybox in the sky. RIP, Fucking Sculptures.

+ Don’t get a Motorbunny.

+ Desire is responsive.

+ At Oh Joy Sex Toy, Jess Fink discusses drawing sex.

+ Sometimes you want a fragrance that smells like sweaty sex.

+ Reddit has a lot of bad sex advice.

+ Looking for somewhere to go for the end of summer? Try a bed and bondage.

+ Marriage (or any very long-term relationship) is scary. Share without fear:

“I don’t want you to think that your love is magical and it won’t require hard work. But ultimately the challenges you face are pretty simple: Dare to dig deeper into your own damage and dare to be fearless in the face of just how screwy you are at some core level. Keep telling the truth. Keep daring to stand up for the things that make you who you are, even when they look broken to you.

When you take on a complicated emotional landscape that belongs to someone else when you’re very young, it’s hard not to treat your own emotional needs as scary liabilities. But it’s time to put that map under glass, and point at it, and laugh at it, even. You can examine it closely but still treat it like the artifact that it is. You aren’t living there anymore. You’re right here, and you’re stronger than you think.”

+ The photos in this week’s NSFW Sunday are of @reneicespieces by photographer @kenzicrash. This was Reneice’s first shoot, on which she says:

“There were two main things that drew me in. (1) I’ve never been as in love with my body as I am now. Getting here was a journey that I’m proud to have embarked on, and I wanted to do something to celebrate this intense level of body love I’ve been enjoying. Initially my thought was to do a shoot of mostly close ups focusing on my stretch marks but then it clicked that what I really wanted was to do a shoot with my friend Kenzi, because I love her and her work and couldn’t think of a better way to do this for the first time than with a trusted friend with a long gorgeous portfolio of photographing beautiful queer bodies. (2) There is simply not enough representation of plus-size bodies of color in non-objectified or shamed ways on the internet or really anywhere else. I wanted to do this for myself, but also for all the other women with skin and rolls and stretch marks and cellulite like mine. To say yes, we are GORGEOUS to behold. Yes, our bodies have a place in smut and all art forms that is born from empowerment, self-love, and consent not stripped of those things. Yes, we have the right to be seen, represented, and uplifted just as much as other bodies. So this shoot was my way of screaming those things from the mountain tops.

Before the shoot I felt mostly excited and slightly nervous. During I was ALL nerves. Kenzi asked me if I was okay a million times cause she’s never seen me so manic haha. I was definitely okay, it is just unlike any other feeling or experience to be photographed nude by someone else for the first time. It took more faith and confidence than I expected to be calm while someone is analyzing every angle of your body in order to capture it, and trust that they aren’t judging you. I was fortunate in having Kenzi emote nothing but love and affirmation while she worked so by the end I’d forgotten I ever had any reason to be nervous. Afterwards I was just consumed with giggles and excitement and “OMG these shots are FIRE” feelings.

I would love to see queer representation continue to expand outward, encompassing and celebrating the vast diversity of expression our community has. Not staying focused on thin, cis, white bodies.”

Carolyn Yates was the NSFW Editor (2013–2018) and Literary Editor for Autostraddle.com, with bylines in Nylon, Refinery29, The Toast, Bitch, Xtra!, Jezebel, and elsewhere. They live in Los Angeles and also on twitter and instagram.

Carolyn has written 1110 articles for us.

10 Comments

  1. AWWWWW RENIECE, BABE YOU LOOK AMAZING!!!

    Thank you for sharing this photoshoot and your reflections with us.

    “I wanted to do this for myself, but also for all the other women with skin and rolls and stretch marks and cellulite like mine.”

    As one of those women, thank you. It definitely made my Sunday that much brighter to get to have this experience.

Contribute to the conversation...

Yay! You've decided to leave a comment. That's fantastic. Please keep in mind that comments are moderated by the guidelines laid out in our comment policy. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation and thanks for stopping by!