I Went To A Wild Sex Party — & Here’s What Happened

Photographed by Alexandra R Gavillet.
In the throes of the Christmas season, when warm and fuzzy feelings are supposed to preside, the love of my life dumped me. After a year and a half together, she left me, leaving behind nothing but an icy cold loneliness that let up only enough for the sharp pain of heartbreak to seep in.
Any breakup is difficult, especially when it’s unexpected. Getting dumped during the holidays is the absolute worst. Seeing loving couples, mittens, and lips entwined in the lingering dusk light on snowy city streets was enough to make me want to crawl under my covers with my chunky cat and a box of Kleenex for the rest of my life.
I was like a busted fire hydrant, bursting into uncontrollable bouts of hysteria. It didn’t matter where I was — the subway, work, out to dinner — I cried every hour like a timed fountain outside a shopping mall. Everything reminded me of her: the scent of essential oils that she’d dab on her pulse points every day, the sight of a dark-coloured compact car (read: every other vehicle). Shopping at the supermarket became a minefield, as every song that came on the radio from Justin Bieber to "Dominick the Donkey" was written for me about my lost love. I couldn’t pick out a head of broccoli without bursting into tears. Who knew produce could be so heart-wrenching?
I tried to collect myself and move on. I filled my calendar with social activities. I saw shows and went out to dinners. I went on bad blind dates and to one incredibly awkward speed dating session. Why do all the weirdos come out to such events? If I saw one more bum bag or mullet, I might have gone straight.
But in three months of keeping busy, nothing seemed to lift my spirits or distract me from thinking about my ex for even one minute.

It would either be a total freak show disaster or the most exciting night of my life. I was so down in the dumps, I spand I didn’t have much to lose.

And then I saw an ad for a sex party. It was queer and quirky sounding. It claimed to be an inclusive safe space. It sounded like a friendly neighbourhood bar with a mandatory clothing check at the door. It was an experience that would either be a total freak show disaster or the most exciting night of my life. I was so down in the dumps, I figured I didn’t have much to lose.
I convinced my friend to go with me as my safety and co-conspirator.
I admit that I was nervous. I had no idea what to expect. Would I walk into a real-life professional porn scene, completely intimidated by my round body and less-than-smooth approach? Would I walk into a dingy, dirty cesspool where creepy old men tried to stick it to anyone they could?
I took a few swigs out of an 80-proof bottle for liquid courage and a few hits on a special cigarette to even out the nerves, and suited up in fishnet stockings, platform shoes, and a hot red crotchless corset. I felt naughty and sexy on the subway, my long pea coat masking the underpinnings of a potentially scandalous night. I could have been on my way to a bowling alley for all anyone knew.
We arrived at the location, a nondescript door on an otherwise mundane city street, and wound down a dark staircase to an entryway flanked by a hot dyke collecting the nominal entry fee and guests’ clothing.
My worries about feeling unattractive melted away as I slipped into the noir-lit basement. It was just dark enough and the energy was just inviting enough that I no longer felt afraid. Of course, it could have been the whiskey talking, but I was curious and open-minded. Best of all, I was distracted from my heartache.
The space was divided up in many tiny sections, some cubicles with nothing but a peephole, some more lounge-like with seating and a screen playing porn movies, and one front and centre with a large canopy bed. I stuck close to my friend, who was wearing boxers and a tank top and a bulge from a strap-on, and we wound our way through the labyrinth. We spotted people of all shapes and sizes and in various stages of undress and action. One man sucked another off while two stood by and watched; one tall woman, wearing what amounted to a slip floating through the space was a quiet observer, ready to unleash fury and pleasure once she found a mate.
An older woman appeared from around a corner. "You’re beautiful," she hummed in my ear. I thanked her and sidled away, grateful for the compliment, but not intrigued enough to engage.
A wave of boldness came over me, and I stopped a good-looking young man and commanded him to give my friend a blow job. He obediently stooped to his knees, freed the dildo from my friend’s shorts, and went to town. I watched with mixed humour and curiosity.

She meandered into a cubicle and sat on a bench, motioning for me to come and unzip her thigh-high boots.

A few moments later, a cute girl that looked close in age walked up to me with a friend and invited me to the bed. I turned her down, still feeling like I couldn’t sleep with other women, like no one could measure up to my ex. I introduced her to my friend and they proceeded to the bed, where the girl climbed on top of my friend, and they rocked together rhythmically, the strap-on getting more action than most people do in one night. I watched for a little bit, excited by the spontaneity and the craziness of it all, and then wandered off on my own.
I came upon a hot woman with short hair and bright red lipstick. She smiled at me and beckoned for me to follow her. She meandered into a cubicle and sat on a bench, motioning for me to come and unzip her thigh-high boots. I slowly, methodically undressed her legs, and she smiled at me with a tantalising swagger, which sent a shock up my spine. It was the first time I felt something since the breakup. It was like the first spot of sunlight after a long, miserable dark winter. Somehow, I knew this was her turn-on and that we weren’t going to venture any further together. I turned and left.
I came upon a man who was wandering through the coital corridors and, before I knew what I was doing, I signalled for him to join me in a cubicle, pushed him up against my backside, and bent over, ready to be taken. He put a condom on and we had sex. I felt in control. He was my muse. I guided him to quicken his pace and I came hard. I thanked him, gently pushed him away, and walked back out to find my friend. I had never seen his face. I didn’t care. For the first time in three months, my mind was clear and calm. I felt serene.
It wasn’t until the cold air hit my face as we left the club in the wee hours of the morning that I realised that the party was the first time in three months I hadn’t thought of her. For the first time in months, I felt free. In that very moment, a glimmer of hope worked its way into my heart that I might, in fact, be able to smile and maybe, one day, even love again.
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