May 4, 2021 –  What was your sex life like before you got sober?

TAWNY: My sex life was very performative. It was for the other person. I had fun and it felt good—don’t get me wrong—but I was more concerned with pleasing the other person than figuring out what I actually wanted.

What were your initial conceptions about what sober sex was going to be like?

TAWNY: I thought sobriety was going to be the worst thing ever. I thought, ‘I’m not going to have any friends. I’m never going to date again. I’m never going to have sex. I had applied alcohol to everything in my life, and I didn’t even know, like, how am I going to hang out with my friends if it’s not for a drink?

But it actually sounds like getting sober shifted how you prioritized your own pleasure.

TAWNY: It’s almost like I’m in Sex 101, where I’m learning my body, learning what turns me on, and then gaining the confidence to share that with someone that I trust. It was really scary to do that—to tell him, ‘Look, I used to fake orgasms, but I don’t want to do that with you.’ 

When it comes to consent, did cutting out alcohol help you pick up on partners’ non-verbal cues?

NICK: It’s more than just consent. Let’s say consent is a baseline, where a hundred percent of sex sessions start with that. That’s the 101 level. If you’re drunk, you’re [also] not going to get the Master’s class or the triple Ph.D. I want to know what Tawny wants, because it makes me a better lover to be receptive to her needs.



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