Notes On Love And Loneliness With Cheryl Fagan - Par Femme

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by Par Femme

Our Par Femme community is far and wide, but for those currently in Australia, many of us continue a life indoors thanks to state stay-at-home orders. While Australians have become well-versed in the language of lockdown, there's no denying it's still tough. The days feel long, the nights longer. A time to make all the single people of the world feel more alone, and for those in partnered relationships, navigate the sometimes messy space of supreme, unsolicited connectedness.

It's also been a time to practise patience and relish the slowness of it all. Romanticise the mundane and quotidian, percolate fresh ideas and feelings, meditate and marvel on the slow, soft joys that often go unnoticed. 

So we've asked some of the Par Femme girl gang to share how they're dealing with both the pleasures and perils of lockdown; how they're negotiating feelings of love, loneliness, wrath and resentment.

First up, Par Femme's resident sexologist and eternal dream girl, Cheryl Fagan...

What are you currently doing to while away the days in lockdown?
I’m really enjoying these days at home. I have spent the last couple years embracing the slow life and lockdown is a reminder of how important it is for me personally and for the collective to rest, to slow down, and to take care of ourselves. I’m reading, journaling, yogaing, orgasming, binging Mad Men (again), and cooking lots!

How do you feel?
I feel at peace, relaxed and grateful for my health, and at the same time I feel a
heaviness for the physical and mental health of those impacted by covid.

What are the pleasures of lockdown?
“She rose from the genital wave” – poet Charles Olson

I’ve been on this inner-healing journey (that was not easy), but going through it has 
brought me to this liberating and self-loving place that is priceless. Anyway, this has brought afresh sexual awareness, sensuality, and sensations to my conscious and makes solo-sex so much more enriching.

What are the perils of lockdown?
I’m such an introvert and love being by myself, but still feel like I do miss out on certain things. With lockdown active, it’s nice knowing I’m home and so are my friends, there isn’t that pressure to go out.

How do you remedy loneliness?
Journal! Go within, if I’m not at peace within, no amount of time with my husband or friends can cure this. Do things that make me feel good. Having moved from California 10 years ago, I’m no stranger to painfully missing people…my family, friends and culture! So, a Facetime with my cousin back home that turns into 3 hrs is good for the soul, watching Girlfriends or Friends (maybe the not-so-healthy option), but honestly love them!

How do you find love / joy? 
Again, journaling. We have everything we need within us. Cuddling my husband, meditating and see question 1 re solo-sex.

Cheryl Fagan is a Sexologist and Founder of On Top, with an academic background in Psychology and Sexual and Reproductive Health. You can (and should!) follow her on Instagram at @cherylfagan, or, find her work and Closeness: Card Deck at On Top.

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