About me, Patti Sommer of Empowered Sex. I have a burning, undeniable passion for connecting with people, exploring human sexuality, and empowering women. Let me tell you a little about where I’ve come from and how I got here.
I was born and raised in a small blue-collar town in eastern Pennsylvania. My parents told me that from the time I was able to walk and talk, they would discover me missing, only to find me at a neighbor’s house chatting away to a captive audience of adults.
By the time I’d reached my teens, nothing could suppress my wanderlust, or curb my curiosity about a world outside of the sheltered, ‘white bread’ community in which I was brought up, and the restrictions that my Catholic education had imposed upon me. I remember looking at all the grown-ups around me, and while I was surrounded by the love and good times that being part of a large Austrian-American family provided me, I knew there had to be more.
I tried to do all the ‘right’ things. You know the routine. Get good grades, get a good job, get married, settle down, buy a nice house, and live the ‘American Dream’. The only thing I didn’t do was reproduce. While furthering my career, acquiring ‘stuff’ and supporting my husband in his dreams and goals, I finally made the choice not to have children. After all, my pursuit of ‘The Dream’, kept me quite busy enough, and through a number of synchronous events, we eventually settled in Colorado. From outward appearances, I ‘had it all’.
During my extensive corporate career in training, public speaking, and facilitating international business alliances, I honed my innate ability to communicate and connect with people from all walks of life. My worldwide travels exposed me to a wide variety of beliefs and cultures. At last, my wanderlust and curiosity that began in my adolescent years was satiated!
In the course of my globe-trotting I repeatedly found that people would easily open up to me, with or without invitation, sharing some of their innermost thoughts, fears and dreams. I’m not sure why, but typically the conversations would move in the direction of sex, relationships, women’s roles in society and the impact of religious beliefs on human sexuality. I would return from these trips exhilarated from the connections, and eager to write about and share my discoveries with friends.
But alas, something was still not quite right. The corporate world provided me with a ‘lifestyle’ and a means to travel and connect at many levels, but I always felt that I should be doing something more meaningful. Most of my adult life I have been on a quest to discover my purpose.
The corporate salary, expense account, job title, and paid benefits started to feel more like golden handcuffs, and ‘The American Dream’ at times felt more like ‘The American Nightmare’.
In 2001, I started a women’s group to provide a safe environment for women to express their innermost thoughts and to create a network for brainstorming their dreams into realities. Multiple success stories have resulted from this group, which encourages its members to ‘be who they are’ and supports one another in making life changes.
After being chewed up and spit out repeatedly by Corporate America, I finally became convinced that I needed to listen to my heart and follow my passion. As I approached an age where both men and women typically ask themselves “Is this it?” – I accepted the fact that it was time for a ‘rebirth’. I have to tell you that it has been one of the longest gestation periods known to humankind and the labor pains have been as intense as those that had been described to me by brave women I know who do have children!
My decision to give new life to my ‘self’ has not been without casualties. I have had it all, and lost it all – titles, corporate expense accounts, nice houses, IRA’s, high credit scores, fast cars, storybook vacations, one very contented husband, and even a few friends. When you take off the mask and show people who you really are, some can’t stomach it. Perhaps it’s a painful reminder of the heaviness of the masks they themselves are wearing on a daily basis.
When you stop swallowing the rhetoric that society has spoon fed you for eons, some people don’t want to accept the fact that you’re changing your diet, and you can’t feast at the same tables anymore. We all have to deal with the consequences of our own life choices, and that’s ok.
But wait – did I say I ‘lost it all’ – hmmm, let me rephrase that. I let it go. I knowingly and willingly let it go, to see who I was without all of the layers and layers of insulation I had wrapped around myself, to keep my irrational, radical, non-conforming thoughts hidden from the rest of the world.!
My mission now:
To inspire other women embarking on the most important second half of life’s journey– to embrace their sexuality in all of its glorious femininity and unleash the Goddess within! And to educate the men who love and worship empowered women, breaking through old worn out paradigms so we can all enjoy better sex, through better communication, resulting in better lives
My favorite quote: “Be who you are, and say what you feel, for those who matter don’t mind, and those who mind, don’t matter.” Dr. Seuss.