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As a demisexual newbie, I had the night of my life at a femme-only play party in London. I turned 26 the week before, and I’d been looking forward to this party ever since—and dreading it. I messaged my boss about the event hosted by One Night after they sent me an email informing me about it, and while I was half serious, I asked if they would be willing to sponsor my ticket if I wanted to go to the event. They agreed to sponsor my ticket, which made me sweat profusely. Having been celibate for a while, I wasn’t sure what to do, especially since I’m awkward around new people, and the majority of the WhatsApp group members for the play party (which I joined on the day of the party because I’m useless with technology) had already gotten along well. Nonetheless, I figured, What the hell, I might as well go. Plus, my boss has already made it clear that all sorts of people attend the party, which put me at ease. One night also stated clearly on their website that consent can be withdrawn at any point, quite clearly, and I was starting to muse about this sexual utopia. After all, I do have desires, and deep ones too, and this felt like an opportunity I couldn’t refuse.

I have always had a strong attraction to women; I’m submissive sexually, brat specifically. I was diagnosed as neurodivergent quite late, especially since I grew up South Asian. I came to terms with my sexuality at a young age, and in my early twenties, I made the decision to be celibate while still dating individuals, all in an effort to heal myself. Standing in my black satin dress with revealing boob lace (which I bought specifically for the party because they adhered to a strict dress code when it came to aesthetics), I was a bit anxious about it because I’d have to wear my grandma’s jacket on the train, as otherwise I would risk exposing too much skin for the suburban London metro gaze. On top of that, I’m technically impaired, and getting to the site was a real pain. When I got there, I located the bar in the graffiti tunnel – I’m kidding. I couldn’t locate shit. After a long time of searching in vain, I finally found the party thanks to a lovely girl with a butch cut who approached me and asked if I was Safia. I answered yes, thinking she recognized me from my WhatsApp DP. She proceeded to tell me that she, too, had seen me on the group and was also trying to find the location. I was relieved that someone had finally found me, and having someone guide me and help me had my demisexual meter waking up. Unfortunately, the problem arose when I was getting close to the club, which we found after consulting a map. I realized that I couldn’t get Internet inside the tunnel. Exhibiting her tickets while standing there, I left quickly to get reception without saying goodbye or thanking the girl who helped me find the place. It’s not easy for me to be drawn to new people, but the fact that she was so sweet to find me and show me the ropes made me… warm. I felt foolish for leaving, but when I returned to the security checkpoint, they told me that my friend had been searching for me, which I found adorable. I punched myself mentally for not asking her name.

Upon entering, I stripped down to my dress and deposited my cloak and belongings in the cloakroom. The room was filled with mostly white femmes, and I was unsure of where to go, but I did not feel eyes on me the way I do when I’m around people with a different skin colour. Everyone seemed to fit in place. I decided to put my years of socialization therapy training to use and introduced myself to the two largest groups there. The first group was strange; I greeted them, and they all said hello back, and then dead-silent. I felt awkward, so I moved on to the second group. The same thing happened there, too. Standing in a corner for a bit, I became increasingly anxious, wondering if anyone was looking at me and if I looked good. My purple hair made me stand out, but I didn’t feel self-conscious. I decided to buy a gin and tonic, costing £13. Ha ha. That hurt. After getting a drink, I found myself feeling better for some strange reason, as I spotted a variety of bands you could use to identify yourself next to the beverages. Some of the bands said things like, “I’m a dominant,” “I’m a sadist,” “I’m a masochist,” “I’m a pet,” “I’m not here to play,” and so on. This made me feel good—something about structure for the neurodivergents, eh? After a minute of drinking and feeling more at ease with something in my hand, I noticed that the room had pink lighting and various pieces of equipment. There were groups of girls grabbing each other, fingering each other, oral sex aflow, and some other people were creating more intense bondage scenes. It was a dream come true to see femme sexuality unfiltered and without threat, and it felt absolutely natural. Don’t get me wrong—I still have my doubts about nudity and sex, but I found it empowering and positive to see so many people coming together to express themselves sexually: I think, as I identify the girl who had earlier announced in the group that she was bringing fidget toys for anyone who needed them. I realized, over here, that I felt proud of myself.

Next up came the announcement for spin the bottle, to which I heeded and returned to the main room. As we sat in a circle, the girl I had left at the door walked over and took a seat beside me! She told me her name is Maria, and I was so overjoyed to finally meet her, so I apologized for my abrupt departure. By that time she had taken off her huge jacket and was wearing some beautiful black lingerie. Sitting next to me was an attractive femme NB with wavy hair, who would later become my friend, Razia. The game was underway. I took a deep breath as I waited on the bottle, picturing thirty beautiful femmes watching me make out with a femme—nothing to be nervous about. The first time the bottle spun, it landed on a woman around my age, and she gracefully made her way into the centre of the circle. The host then glanced around at the rest of us, sitting in the circle, and pointed at me, saying, “You look the most nervous.” I thought to myself, Of course I look the most nervous. But I figured, let’s just be mature about this. I moved in, and after a pleasant kiss which made everyone cheer, and leaving my maroon lipstick on the poor girl, which made me giggle, I went back to where Maria was. Maria looked at me surprised she praised me, telling me that I did a great job, which made me blush. Who would have thought? 

After a round, the host requests that we kiss our neighbour, at which my heart screams, “THANK YOU,” because I had already found myself thinking of kissing Maria. When Maria asks if I would like to, I am overjoyed, feeling like a dream. We kiss, and after I giggle some more seeing my lipstick on her; my next prey. My worst nightmare comes true when the curly-haired individual sitting next to me accidentally spills my drink on Maria. It was awkward, but they made a joke about how I got too excited and spilled my drink, and my body instinctively went, “Oh, no, you spilled my drink.” Maria obviously jumps back, and I simply say, “I’m sorry,” even though I didn’t do it. Thankfully, they were kind enough to apologize and become my friend for the rest of the night. Their name was Razia, and I found out they were also South Asian when they suddenly said in my ear, “I’m from your country,” in a spooky, jokey voice. Finding cultural similarities did help me feel better, not sticking out like a sore thumb anymore. I was elated when, out of nowhere, Maria and Razia started making and laughing at culturally specific inside jokes. It was soon revealed that they are also neurodivergent, which further put me at ease. After a bit of chatting, Razia declared and stated basic guidelines about consent when a beautiful South Asian lesbian couple from India joined us, who I thought were extremely lovely, following three more people. I realized they were setting the ground rules for “play,” and with two drinks down and so many friends, I didn’t feel alone or anxious for the rest of the night.

Razia and Maria started kissing each other, and one of the femmes in the lesbian couple, Sandhya, asked me for my name. She then suggested, with her partner’s consent, that the three of us make out. Being my first time with two women at the same time, I had a second thought of anxiety, but seeing my friends engaged in play around me, I realized that I had no reason to. I had had a few drinks by this point, and I was enjoying myself because I was attracted to them. It was my first time being kissed by two people, and since I’m a bottom, it was really hard for me to deny what an experience making out with two vers-tops was. I had previously expressed my preference not to be touched below the belly button, and they respected my wishes. Instead, they focused on my breasts, and I found myself moaning even, utterly absorbed in the experience. After a while, I politely requested that I pardon myself to finish my drink and tend to my overstimulation, and they kindly allowed me to. They graciously stepped aside, and the rest of the group went on with their own activities. I was incredibly proud of myself for pulling that off, but my aunt kept calling me home, and I could see her phone buzzing, which meant I couldn’t stay. Despite my pride in pushing my limits, reality intervened in the form of continuing persistent phone calls from my aunt, urging me to return home immediately. Reluctantly, I stepped outside for a smoke, torn between the temptation to stay and the responsibility calling me home.

When I returned to my friends, they begged me to stay; they even offered to call my aunt, but I had no choice but to leave and proceeded to woefully take a cab home, liking cutting lunch break too early. It was a wild night, but I met incredible people who helped me get through it, and I had some unforgettable experiences that most people can only dream of. I couldn’t shake the feeling of awe and gratitude for the incredible encounters and friendships forged that evening. Witnessing femmes, especially femmes of colour, embrace their sexuality and empowerment was nothing short of inspiring. It was a night of liberation, of breaking boundaries and embracing desires, and I felt privileged to have been a part of it.

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