“Michelle is one of the most compassionate and thoughtful human beings on this planet. Not only that but Michelle is extremely, and I mean extremely, dedicated to her work. She is constantly doing more to expand the
field, serve her community, open doors for clients and clinicians. Michelle lobbied me to do a course on Surrogate Partner Therapy (SPT) which was tremendously helpful in our clinical work together. She is consistently learning more about different therapeutic techniques and interventions. She even bought and read a dense trauma book made for clinicians to understand more about exposure therapy. Working with Michelle has truly opened my eyes to the immense power and healing of SPT. I am grateful that she was my first experience working with a surrogate partner and I know this relationship will go on for the rest of our careers.”
Vanessa Cushing, MS, NCC
“I had a great time yesterday. Your company and cuddles were healing. I called my mom after our session and both relief cried and couldn’t stop smiling.
I feel very good about the way things were facilitated. I felt safe. I felt like I could voice things that I needed to voice. There was also a handy structure and reassurance for me in the knowledge that you knew what you were doing and I didn’t have to flail my way through (anymore than the usual flailing that occurs for me that is 😛 ). I felt like there was space to be authentically me and focus on self regulation and becoming attuned to my body again because of the environment you brought. It’s really cool to be in a space that intimate where I can try to unmask as much as possible. Autopilot for me is a really big thing to tackle after being on it so much of my life within social situations. It felt pretty great, albeit also hard, to do some more work on that in a setting like this.”
“Having read a few books on kink, negotiation looked easy to my IT-engineer’s mind until my first attempt to do it. Although my mind has always understood, without difficulty, that a “No” is a validation of “Yes”, my body never got it. Whenever I tried to negotiate play I would shut down and collapse upon hearing the first “No”, making any further play next to impossible.
To get over this hurdle, I needed someone trustworthy, generous, known for solid boundaries, and whom I am attracted to – in order to practice erotic requests under emotional pressure while receiving No’s and Yes’s as they come. Michelle’s Destination Intimacy in San Diego was an excellent choice for that type of experience. By the time of my session, I was comfortably immersed in Michelle’s warm attention as we had already spent several hours getting used to each other’s closeness by hanging out on the beach, watching seals and sea lions.
Going home right away after my session would have been like being caught naked in a snowstorm. There is a good reason why this should be a whole day. Going back to the oceanfront to watch the bioluminescence, while holding hands after light dinner together, was a soft landing out of paradise. Our session was rich, and I needed that time to slip gently out of Michelle’s charm.
Thank you, Michelle. Not only did I learn but I also lived a lot on that day.”
“I enjoyed many aspects of my time with Michelle! What touched me most of all was her attitude and her approach. She was SO nonjudgmental and SO playful. I think a successful session has more to do with mindset than the activity itself. Michelle’s acceptance and easy manner made for an amazing head trip.”
“Michelle is an absolute delight. I had my first cuddling session ever with her and she took the time to ease my nerves, resolve my concerns and she really helped me to be comfortable with connecting with another person again. I appreciate her love of cuddling and her ability to just *listen*. I can’t wait for our next cuddle!”
“I know you said that you were going to contact me to check-in, but I just couldn’t wait to let you know how much good I think yesterday’s session did. I was all warm and fuzzy inside driving home afterwards, and I still feel kind of glowing. Today I feel more human – or at least less isolated from humanity in general than I did before. I may not be explaining this very well, but I hope (and suspect!) you know what I mean.”
“Hello. First I must tell you why I am giving a review of my experience working with Michelle Renee in this private matter in my life. First, I am a queer trans woman and I felt like I was the first trans person ever to use this therapy (SPT). Michelle told me I was wrong, but if sharing my story can help even one trans person feel more comfortable using this therapy or decide to work with Michelle, this will be worth it. Second, shame and fear of my sexuality left me in a very dark place for far too many years. I hope this helps in a small way with ending sexual shame.
How I got here – the short version. I was assigned male at birth and raised as one. When I entered male puberty, I experimented with different ways to masturbate which lead to “cross-dressing.” My emotions were all over the place as I tried to understand my desires. When I couldn’t will away my desire to crossdress, my confusion turned to fear and that fear and shame grew into my biggest secret. I felt my sexuality was broken or evil. Fast forward many many years; I am an out and proud trans woman who is comfortable being herself in the world. My new secret is: I left behind my sexuality. I started my personal growth and healing in exploring platonic touch. Being raised male, I didn’t know such loving affectionate touch, that didn’t involve sex, even existed. I was able to heal and grow so much in the platonic cuddling community. I quickly became a Cuddle Party veteran. As I became more confident in asking for what I wanted, I eventually asked a close friend in the cuddle community for help in growing beyond platonic-only intimacy. This led me to Michelle.
I was scared when I went to my first session with Michelle. Will we connect? What if we don’t? Who else would work with a trans woman if this doesn’t work? Michelle welcomed me into her space and I felt a warm loving energy from her. That helped a lot to calm my nerves. I shared with her my history and my current feelings as we got to know a bit about each other. Then we started cuddling where I was already comfortable bonding with people. Then we cuddled in our underwear. I was embarrassed at how scared I felt, but the fear was replaced with loving warmth and loving energy from Michelle. During the next session, we first talked about what my plan is and when I would know our work was done. I told Michelle my goal is to be comfortable dating in the BDSM community where I can ask for what I want and assert my boundaries with confidence. When I fell in love with Michelle, is when I started to feel confident being naked together. I felt safe with Michelle as I entered my challenge zone beyond my comfort zone. I grew so much with the experience of a sexual relationship. I find most of my growth and personal healing was in growing our relationship. The sex was the very pleasurable reward for our relationship. I felt the pace of our work together was right as I needed about a month to process most of my new experiences. I am currently in my last few sessions with Michelle. I feel sad that we will soon be ending our work together and “breaking up.” What helps me deal with the sadness is realizing I am growing out of the safety container of our short few-hour sessions together. I am ready and looking forward to, hope to, have a longer relationship with a new love. For so many years I was so scared I would never get close enough to anyone to have a sexual relationship. Working with Michelle has been a dream come true. Michelle is a dream come true. I will always have a place in my heart for her. Whoever reads this I wish you well in your healing journey and hope Michelle can be a part of your journey as well.”
“I have a resource that won’t judge me and I can find nurturing with.”
“I am feeling really good. I had a couple of situations that would have usually made me anxious, but I was surprisingly calm. Thank you for your help.”
“I’ve become someone who has better skills at asking for my wants, needs, recognizing where I stand with my body. Even better, that seeps into my work, family, and where I now know what I want and don’t like.”