A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of going to GWNN Bash as both a sponsor and a member of the community – it was a really great experience and I wanted to talk about it a little.
Content warning: This event included adults-only-oriented activities. There are no R- or X-rated details in this post, but if you’re not interested in reading about this sort of thing (or if you’re my mom) please stop here.
For those who don’t know, the Group With No Name (or GWNN-pronounced Gwen) is a Central Texas based pansexual, social, and common interest organization that serves as a gateway organization focusing on education, advocacy, acceptance, and social interaction for the alternative sexuality and kink lifestyle. https://gwnnaustin.com/
I’ve been a card-carrying GWNN member for a long time, so it was an interesting change of pace to attend the first day of the Meet and Greet in my “professional” hat. We we brought custom stickers, water bottles, candy, and even had a raffle for some really nice glass tumblers that I had commissioned with our logos on them. It brought a lot of attention and interest as people came by, giving me the chance to have good conversations throughout the night. Our sticker Who gets the Dungeon when you die? You Decide. was a great conversation starter about the unique needs of the kink community when it comes to end-of-life planning.
I am happy to be supporting an event for my community, getting to know new folks and re-connecting with old friends after the pandemic hiatus. Stef, the GWNN President, gave us a shoutout on Thursday night while she was doing the announcements, which led to a half a dozen people coming over who might not have otherwise. We had a few folks come by and ask some general legal questions, and while we couldn’t exactly do one-on-one legal advice, I was happy to point people in the right direction and invite them to contact me for free short consults, where we can talk in a more private setting.
The meet-and-greet table gave us a great view of the “Supermarket Sadist” activity – the contestants were given a grab bag of ordinary grocery store/ hardware/dollar store stuff and told to make a kinky toy and do a skit. It was hilarious and the contestants were super-creative; everyone was a winner.
With that first night done I got to take off my “professional” hat and spend the rest of the weekend attending the conference sessions and enjoying the party.
There were some great seminars and events that I got to attend on Friday and Saturday that I wanted to share. One of them was a 2-part presentation on negotiation and consent by Jareth McKenzie. This was a good intro for newer members of the community to help them safely navigate the world of BDSM and a good refresher for those of us who have been in the scene for a bit.
Mrs. BlueFrost and her partner Mister-Blue, did a great presentation about how kinky people can live as their authentic selves even while being parents. They created a safe place for people to share their stories and thoughts about how to navigate a household with children when you have a kink lifestyle. We discussed the risks of your lifestyle being used against you in legal matters involving custody. We talked about some cringe moments where curios kiddos asked questions and the tension between creating an atmosphere of honest, age-appropriate communication with your youngsters and also holding firm boundaries on privacy and discretion for parents’ adult activities.
We also had some serious discussion about the risks of non-traditional lifestyle being used against you in legal matters involving custody. As a lifelong resident of this state who works in family law, I know you have to not only BE safe but be SEEN AS safe. Courts often don’t look favorably on anybody with alternative lifestyles when it comes to custody, so you really have to dot your i’s and cross your t’s to show that being a kinky person is not a barrier to being a good parent.
Other highlights of the weekend included learning how to tie rope in a coil that won’t tangle (which I will absolutely be using for future camping trips) and having the most delicious lunch pupusa from a Salvadorian food truck onsite. The silent auction is always fun and the vendors this year were top-notch. Spicy Kitten Designs has so many funny/snarky t-shirts it is hard to choose which one I like best. (Spicy Kitten also did some photography for the Ms. World Bear fundraiser a few months ago and I love how my session came out.) The dungeon diorama someone made was also a fun addition to the event.
If you or someone you know has questions about how their lifestyle, kinky or poly or otherwise, might call for some creative legal solutions, contact me at www.chosenfamilylawtx.com and set up a consultation today. We can make a plan to avoid the conflicts that can arise if your vanilla family members are surprised by the toys and furniture in your estate and also to leave an amazing legacy for your chosen family of leather and lifestyle after you are gone.