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Sexuality is our Birthright

Barbara Williamson Author Interview

Barbara Williamson Author Interview

Free Love and the Sexual Revolution is a memoir about your life, marriage, and founding of a free love nudist community in California. Why was this an important book for you to write?

It was important for me to commemorate Sandstone Retreat. To document some facts. Barbara and John created such a special place {never done before} and preserve it for history. As a reminder that “SEXUALITY IS OUR BIRTH RIGHT and must be reclaimed for us to be free individuals.” Now 50 years has past, and I can show virtual documentation to those born afterward, of this all important revolution that brought much needed change in America.

Writing a memoir causes one to reflect on their life in a different light. Is there anything you see differently now that you wrote this book?

I am so grateful for all the awakenings and lessons learned through the sexual revolution era and beyond We are all “hardwired to connect” and globally connected.

I appreciated the honesty and sincerity with which you told your story. What was the most important thing for you to convey to readers?

Seek TRUTH and LIFE to pave your road to PERSONAL FREEDOM and HAPPINESS. I am living proof that truth sets us free.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

No Title at this time. Working on next memoir of my own spiritual exploration and transformations. A personal memoir where I am getting truly naked. Book will be available in 2019.

Author Links: GoodReads | TwitterFacebook | WebsiteTumblr

Free Love and The Sexual Revolution: Finding Yourself by Removing Sexual Boundaries by [Williamson, Barbara]

Barbara Williamson, “the most liberated woman in America,” shares her life story for the first time in her amazing memoir – Free Love and Sexual Revolution. As cofounder with her husband John, “the messiah of sex,” of the highly successful and controversial Sandstone Retreat in Malibu, California, in the late 1960s and early ’70s, the couple started what became known as the hub of the sexual revolution.

The clothing-optional, alternate-lifestyle Sandstone Retreat was outrageously popular, with a membership reaching 500 and nearly 8,000 visitors. Long before today’s reality television inundated the airwaves with its media “personalities,” Barbara and John Williamson were the darlings of the media, with newspapers, magazines, books,movies, and television shows clamoring for interviews.

SANDSTONE Retreat quickly became outrageously popular with membership reaching five hundred, and numerous newspapers, magazines, books, movies, and television shows clamoring for interviews.

It became known as the hub of the sexual revolution. John was branded as “The Messiah of Sex” and I as the most liberated woman in America. Based on mutual trust and friendship, the bond between John and me grew so strong that we were inseparable for forty-seven years until his death.

University professors nationwide rushed to visit this new kind of unstructured free love community to view and study members joyously living an alternate lifestyle. The dress code was optional but most everyone preferred nudity.

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Free Love and the Sexual Revolution – Trailer

FREE LOVE and the SEXUAL REVOLUTION is a joyous romp through the sexual revolution of the sixties. My life partner, John, and I created the first (and perhaps the only) commune for grown-ups where open sexuality was encouraged and fully embraced. We called it Sandstone Retreat. Nestled in the wooded splendor of Topanga Canyon, California, with sweeping vistas of the Malibu Mountains and Pacific Ocean, it was fifteen acres of beauty and pleasure, a retreat from artificiality. It was a community where a person’s mind, body,and sexuality came together in total abandonment. The dress code was total nudity, and the mind-set was acceptance of all things pleasurable, sensual, and sexual. Sandstone was a huge success from the moment we opened our doors, and dozens of celebrities came to stay and play. I can honestly say I saw more naked stars than any other woman of that era! We offered such a unique and tantalizing lifestyle that soon reporters and television producers were clamoring for us to go public about our amazing concept of shared sexual pleasure without jealousy or possessiveness. Gay Talese’s wildly successful best seller Thy Neighbor’s Wife was about life at Sandstone. Articles written about Sandstone are too numerous to list, but just a few highlights include Esquire (three times), Rolling Stone, the Los Angeles Times, Atlantic Monthly, Time Magazine, Penthouse, and the Los Angeles Star. We were also prominently featured in television specials that aired on the History Channel, VH1, Lifetime, and the Sundance Channel. Presiding over all that free love and open sexuality was an experience of a lifetime. I came to recognize and embrace my own bisexual nature and to share it with others. When I look back on those years spent at Sandstone, I appreciate how truly wondrous it was, how amazing and unique, and John and I were the creators.

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Free Love and the Sexual Revolution: Finding Yourself by Removing Sexual Boundaries

I feel liberated just reading this book! I was totally caught by surprise by how much I loved this book. Any preconceived notions I had about this type of living situation were quickly dispelled by this beautifully written memoir about one woman’s life as the owner of a free love nudist community in California. She walks the reader through her early life, youth, and young adulthood and how this former top insurance salesperson and her aerospace engineer husband ended up running this alternative commune.

This community is located in Topanga Canyon, CA and is not hard to find on the internet and other sources like books, TV and even movies. She describes the community and property beautifully as being “nestled like a gentle Buddha in the wooded tangle of Topanga Canyon” and it made me instantly want to go there. The way she describes life with this free love family both answered questions and created more curiosity in me.  The star struck silly girl in me wants to know all the celebrities who went there, as the author mentions.

She tells amazing, sexy, erotic, and loving stories from her time at Sandstone, but she also shares some of the conflicts that inevitably arise in this type of environment. I was particularly interested by the chapters about the making of a film at the site. I am definitely going to have to hunt that movie down to watch after reading this book.

I love that she included essays by many of the former family members who shared their experiences at Sandstone. It seems like so many people felt transformed by their ability to be so open and free among this community of free thinkers and people who did not want to be weighed down by jealousy or judgment. I love that they promoted their lifestyle and had workshops and publications. These were people who were not just flippantly promiscuous or polyamorous. They lived this lifestyle with intention and the desire to live in a conscious way outside of what was forced on them by society.

The author shares openly about her life story which is somewhat sad in her early years, but she maintains such a positive and mindful attitude that it is inspiring to read. I am so impressed by how she ran with who she is and what she believed in. I find this awe inspiring and this book got me thinking about the things about which I am passionate. She also shares so much about her time running a cat rescue and you can really experience her love for these animals in her loving descriptions about these creatures.

This was not a smutty or perverse book, as some might assume, far from it. This work of non-fiction about the Sandstone Retreat paints this community with a beautiful brush. It was not some swinger club or sex club but a group of like-minded individuals who came together and chose to live in pure openness and honesty. This magically led to an amazing experience for so many people and never morphed into anything ugly or tragic. Awesome! I thoroughly enjoyed this book!

Pages: 202 | ISBN: 9781508543558

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