The Bonobo Way

By Kendra Holliday | February 15, 2015

The Bonobo Way, by Dr. Susan Block

The Bonobo Way, by Dr. Susan Block

We all know that humans are not unfeeling objects, right? – despite the mainstream media trying to push us in that direction. From what I can gather, our society tends to regard natural bodies and animals with contempt.

Here is what mainstream seems to like:






No body hair

No body fluid

No emotions



NEWSFLASH: We ARE animals. Mammals, in fact. Primates, actually. We have body hair, fluids, feelings.

We are born natural (nature!) and can remain that way, if we wish.

We can fake or freak our way through life, or we can go The Bonobo Way.


You can read all about it in Dr. Susan Block’s book by the same title.

It’s very difficult for me to write about this book, because I want to share every single detail. There is not one sentence I disagree with. I could have written it myself, as it shares all my unconventional, sex-positive sentiments, except I didn’t – Dr. Suzy did, and you need to heed this good Doctor’s advice!

She writes in an extremely engaging, reassuring style, full of cute metaphors and alliteration. Yes, she has a freak flag and she’s not afraid to let it fly, but she keeps the tone very safe for bonobo beginners. She’s a REAL sex therapist who employs non-traditional methods for treating couples and individuals dealing with sex and relationship issues.  She offers solutions for bored couples, inorgasmic and uninspired women, inexperienced men, men suffering from anxiety when being intimate with a woman, and more.

One of her first steps for learning the Bonobo Way is to watch bonobos in action. If you can’t see them in the wild or in a zoo (they are only found in about 20 zoos in the world), you can find footage online.

Dr. Suzy mentions dozens of awesome scientists, researches, and sex-positive educators – a quilt bag of resources! One of the people frequently cited in Dr. Suzy’s book is Christopher Ryan, co-author of Sex at Dawn. Here’s a great TED talk he did that relates to the topic at hand:

Here’s another stud in the realm of primatology – Frans de Waal:

Another step in learning the Bonobo Way is to understand that sex is more than just penis-vagina penetration. That is just one small part of it.

You have to rethink sex. Restructure it. Get rid of the word “foreplay.” Get in touch with your feminine or masculine side. Learn that sex is a creative outlet, and playtime for adults! Intimacy is touching, grooming, cuddling, face-to-face contact. It can be aerobic, intense, tender, erotic, sensual, sweet.

Increase your Sexual Intelligence. Dr. Suzy cites Dr. Marty Klein’s book of the same name: “Sexual intelligence is the set of internal resources that allows you to relax, be present, communicate, respond to stimulation, and create physical and emotional connection with a partner.”

It’s ironic that the term “homo sapiens” translates to “wise man,” but we can’t figure out how to live smart! Why do we have to make it so difficult? As journalist and bonobo expert Vanessa Woods writes, “Bonobos may  not be able to do calculus, but they can do something even more impressive – live together without killing each other.”

I have a “Planet of the Apes” theory that humans descended from either chimps, bonobos, gorillas, or orangutans. Competitive chimps are, unfortunately, the most common. My man is a total silverback gorilla! Loners are orangutans. And I am a blessedly promiscuous bonobo!

It’s hard being a peace-loving bonobo in a world full of warring chimps.

Bonobos are a matriarchal society. The females band together, and go after what they want. The males realize that the key to having lots of awesome sex is to RESPECT the women in their group, especially the mothers and older wise women!

The bonobos share resources. They aren’t territorial. When conflict arises, they don’t let it escalate to deadly violence. Instead, they resolve issues with sex. Yes, bonobos get jealous, but they deal with that with more sex! They hang out and eat and love on each other and have orgies.

Dr. Suzy preaches “ethical hedonsim,” which is a lot like my take on “responsible hedonism” – if you take care of your duties and obligations, you can have as much fun as you want, as long as you’re not hurting others.

She offers very sound and practical advice from men, women, and transgender people on how to expand their sexual horizons and replace the fear with love!

One tip that I have taken to heart is to create your own safe, sexual play spaces. That’s what I’ve done with my TBK play parties! Due to popular demand, the next one will feature a girl pile and opportunities to act out BDSM fantasies. Dr. Suzy recommends allowing more women than men to attend events in order to keep the space welcoming to women. This is why very few single men are allowed to attend.

As you know, I’m a pair-bonded, non-monogamous, bisexual sex worker. I live a rich and beautiful life full of twosomes, threesomes, and moresomes! As do many of my friends. In fact, one of my girlfriends texted me the other day, “Life is good. In one week, I had 3 threesomes – 1 FMF (female-male-female), 1 MFM (male-female-male), and 1 FFF (female-female-female). Friends and lovers are so much fun!”

Now THAT is the Bonobo Way!

LEARN MORE: Buy the book and read it. Visit Dr. Susan Block’s  website and sex-positive empire for more info!


Stephen 2015-02-15 22:01:37

One of your most comprehensive posts ever! Excellent. Looks like I have a lot of link-clicking to do…


David Wraith 2015-02-16 22:29:09

I can’t wait to read this book. And I hate reading.


Chelsea Demoiselle (Raw) 2015-02-16 23:58:50

I’m so glad to e-meet you via this enticing and eloquent review of Dr Susan Block’s “The Bonobo Way”. I really like how intrinsic the whole awareness / philosophy of her “Peace Through Pleasure” is in your life and consciousness. Thank you for your commitment to realness and your work with TBK play parties and what you term “responsible hedonism” … This is a profound and noble service to the world!


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