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Who’s the goo girl?

Meet Mother of Goo!

“We’re taught to be disgusted by our fluids. Maybe it’s related to a fear of death. Body fluids are base material. Disneyland is so clean; hygiene is the religion of fascism. The body sack, the sack you don’t enter, it’s taboo to enter the sack. Fear of sex and the loss of control; visceral goo, waddle, waddle.” [Paul McCarthy, 2003]

I’ve always been fascinated with fluids; in particular, how humans excrete them during moments of vulnerability and intimacy. As McCarthy notes in the quote above, these fluids and the actions connected with them, are almost always considered taboo – despite how truly commonplace they are in daily life. 

Taboo: adjective 

Prohibited or restricted by social custom.

Whether it’s breastfeeding in public, weeping through grief, urinating on a partner, spitting in someone’s mouth, sweating through cramps or swallowing the semen of a lover, the fluids of life are kept quiet, kept private, kept taboo. It’s taboo to enter the sack. This is how the name Mother of Goo was born. 

Destigmatizing Sexuality

Mother of Goo is the name I use as a writer on sexuality and as an artist exploring sensuality and vulnerability. I have published my sex column for the past three years with the University of Winnipeg’s The Uniter.

Winnipeg is the city in which I was born, grew up and lived in until August of 2022, when I moved to K’jipuktuk (Halifax) to begin my Masters of Clinical Social Work. Mother of Goo seeks to destigmatize sexuality and all that it means. I am thrilled to be continuing on this journey with the Dalhousie Gazette

My name is Madeline Rae. I am a cisgender, able-bodied white woman, born to a family from Iceland, Scotland and England. I grew up, non-consensually, in the Christian Church, and the subsequent trauma from this deeply informs my work today.

It wasn’t until my late teen years that I came into my identity as a bisexual queer woman. I take an SSRI everyday to survive and thrive, and I’m in (continuous, ongoing) recovery from addictive substance use.

These components of my social reality inform how I move around this world, how I learn, how I write and how I can (or cannot) relate. I share them with you, now, in the spirit of transparency and with a commitment to ongoing reflection and learning. 

Interest in Sexuality

My interest in sexuality has always been present – likely strengthened by the repressive dogma I lived with for years. In my first undergrad degree, a Bachelor of Fine Arts Honors, my thesis work combined sculptures and performance art to create a space where intimacy, vulnerability and sensuality could be harnessed by performers and witnessed by an audience.

I interacted with inorganic materials (plastics, silicone, rubber) while incorporating organic materials (spit, sweat, olive oil, gelatin). Performance art, unlike fiction, is a real, ritualistic happening. 

With this in mind, I pursued another degree in psychology, to better understand the potential therapeutic impacts of the performance space. I became a sex educator and worked in sexual and reproductive justice and healthcare, HIV education and prevention and community support work.

I knew that I wanted to push beyond the art world into a space of client therapy and research – specifically with a focus on the effects of social systems of oppression.  Thus, I ended up in a Masters of Social Work program, with the goal of becoming a certified sex therapist. 

Welcome to Mother of Goo

I welcome you to Mother of Goo, a column where I will investigate and explore topics along the spectrum of sexuality and sensuality. Combining research, social activism, theory, community events and personal anecdotes, I hope to deliver to my readers a juicy, relatable column, and destigmatize the taboo parts of being a human being.

In all my work, I centre intersectional feminism, anti-oppressive practice, harm reduction and pleasure activism (more on these theories to come). 

Here is a space to unpack oppressive laws and policy, to present theory in a digestible manner, to discuss the hushed components of sexuality (ex. eating ass, piss play, heartbreak, casual sex, etc.) and to offer helpful practical advice (with a bit of humor and poetry mixed in). 

Welcome to Mother of Goo

Some weeks, Mother of Goo will offer advice to anonymous questions. To submit a question or request for advice to Mother of Goo, please do so through the anonymous form!

BIO:

Madeline Rae (she/her) is a sex educator and writer living in K’jpuktuk, Mi’kma’ki. Rae holds a BFA honors and a BA in Psychology from Treaty 1 (Winnipeg, Manitoba). She is completing her Clinical MSW at Dalhousie, with plans to work as a certified sex therapist. Rae is trained in client-centered sex education, pro-choice reproductive and sexual health counseling, WPATH gender-affirming care, and harm reduction. Her work investigates the therapeutic potentials of BDSM, the ritual space of performance, and the sensual reclamation of bodily autonomy. She previously published Mother of Goo through the University of Winnipeg’s Uniter Newspaper.

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