Intro to Our Relationship User Guide Zine

Introduction to the make your own relationship user guide

One of the things we want to do lots of on this website is to create zines that you can download and work through yourselves. We find zines a great friendly format for getting ideas across that doesn’t rely on too much reading. We try to include lots of pictures and creative activities to really get you thinking. Meg-John enjoys this because it means they get to draw some comics, which they really enjoy. Justin enjoys it because he gets to pretend to be a graphic designer and bring the technical wizardry!

Zines are also good because they’re all about you being the expert on what works for you. The idea is just to give you some pointers of questions you might answer and ideas you might play with to tune into how you want to do sex and relationships, and to communicate that to others.

So we’ll be providing zines on here to help you think about things like the kind of sex you want or don’t want, how you like to do self-care, and communicating with others. To start with though we came up with a zine to help you create your own relationship user guide.

Relationship user guides are a way of letting other people know how we like to do relationships: what works for us, and what doesn’t.

Many of us have grown up thinking that love is something that we have no control over: that if we have to work on our relationships then it’s not natural and it’s not real love. We, ourselves, think that love is a combination of something you make happen as well as it happening to you. What if we could try a more consensual and intentional way of doing relationships? That’s what this zine is all about.

A lot of us are also taught about relationships in quite a narrow way, for example that there’s one true way of doing relationships, that romantic relationships are the only kind that really ‘count’, or that relationships have to develop in a particular way over time. This zine challenges those ideas and helps you to think about how you like to do relationships, whether or not that fits with those kinds of cultural ‘norms’.

In future blog posts we’ll also say a bit more about some of the activities in the zine and our thinking behind them.

We hope you enjoy it. As always do feel free to let us know what you think :-). It costs just £2.50 for an instant download and is available here.