We’ve put together this FAQ to assist you with any questions you might have. If you have one that isn’t covered, please ask it in the comments, or contact us privately at firstname.lastname@example.org
About Erotic Hypnosis, aka Hypnokink
What is hypnosis?
That is a surprisingly complicated question. Every hypnotist has a different answer. Here is a useful and relatively complete definition of hypnosis as a state: Hypnosis is a mental state characterized by a distancing of the mind from the here-and-now (often defined or perceived as a trance state, but not always) and by a heightening of suggestibility.
After that it gets complicated. That’s because every hypnotist and subject experiences and perceives things slightly differently. Hypnosis is not a one-size-fits-all activity or experience.
No one knows exactly how or why hypnosis works. It seems the mind naturally and readily accepts suggestions from trusted sources, particularly when the conscious, analytical, parts of the mind are distracted. Hypnosis is a collection of methods that, for millennia, have been found to distract the conscious mind, inspire trust, engage the suggestible parts of the mind, and leave persuasive instructions in place.
Although hypnosis can be used for many reasons, here at WEEHU we focus exclusively on the erotic side of things. In particular we do not advocate the use of hypnotherapy (however you choose to define it) except by a licensed professional in a clinical setting.
Here are some statements about hypnosis that are largely true but not always:
- Hypnosis usually involves two people: a hypnotist, or ’tist, and a hypnotee, or subject. But it can involve 1 person or multiple people in either or both roles. These roles often correspond to the roles of top and bottom, or dominant and submissive, but not always.
- The process of a hypnotic session often (but not always) consists of an introductory discussion or “pretalk,” the induction of a trance, suggestions given in trance, and the post-hypnotic state, when suggestions are acted on. This is called the “classical” model of hypnosis and is really completely arbitrary but nonetheless extremely useful.
- Hypnosis is often induced by a hypnotist speaking to a subject, but one can be hypnotized by touch, by text, by imagery, by recordings, or by sounds other than a voice.
- Hypnotic effects can be experienced while in trance or afterward, post-hypnotically. They can be experienced in isolation or be integrated with the rest of the subject’s alert, waking environment.
- Hypnosis generally requires a level of trust, or empathy, between hypnotist and subject. It is largely true that subjects cannot be made to do anything that they don’t want to do under hypnosis, but it’s important to keep in mind that we all have latent or subconscious desires that we don’t normally acknowledge and/or that wouldn’t be a good idea to consciously act on. Ethical hypnotists will not intentionally step beyond understood boundaries; ethical subjects should know that they always have agency even when they feel like they don’t, and even while deep in trance will be able to bring themselves out of trance as needed and/or refuse to follow suggestions they aren’t comfortable with.
What’s so erotic about it?
Erotic hypnosis is the use of hypnosis to enhance any sort of sexual situation with mental or physical effects.
Erotic uses vary immensely from person to person. The list of possibilities and/or reasons for using hypnosis in an erotic context include:
- A fetish for hypnosis in general.
- The pleasure of going in and out of trance.
- Long trances as mental vacations, or chances to behave uncharacteristically.
- Altered or heightened sensations, including arousal and pain.
- Relaxation, the feeling of floating.
- Control over orgasms.
- Illusory bondage.
- Enhanced obedience or submission.
- Creation of new fetishes.
- More realistic role-play.
- A general boost in self-confidence, self-control, assertiveness or other characteristic.
- Loosening of inhibitions.
- Relaxation and general pleasure.
- Visual, auditory and other sensory illusions.
- Guided visualization, out-of-body experiences.
- Apparent external control over body, behavior and mind.
About WEEHU 2017
Where did the extra “E” in WEEHU come from?
WEEHU was inspired by NEEHU, the New England Erotic Hypnosis Unconference, which was the first event of its kind (and is still going strong). We decided to play with the recognizable acronym. Maybe the extra E is for WEstern, or for “extra,” “extremely,” “especially,” “enthusiastic,” etc.
Is WEEHU only about hypnosis?
No. WEEHU seeks to provide programming that is relevant to and supportive of people who fetishize erotic hypnosis and/or trance states. As such we also offer material on such things as: the mental side of BDSM, Dominance & submission, kinky spirituality, energy play, Tantra, role playing, technosexuality, transformation play, community building, and more.
What events are happening where?
All official con events, excluding meals taken at local restaurants, and a field trip on Monday the 12th, will be happening at the con hotel.
Can you help me find a roommate?
Yes. Please post on this thread on Fetlife.
Does the con serve food?
Yes, but not enough to live on. Snacks and drinks will be provided throughout the con, and if you stay at the hotel, a buffet breakfast is included each morning. Beyond that, there are many restaurants in easy walking distance, for lunch and dinner, as well as delivery options. We also have an on-site closing pizza dinner on Sunday evening. If you are operating on a shoestring budget and you are staying at the hotel, all rooms do have microwaves and a mini-fridge. If you are just attending for the day, needing to bring your own food, and you require a place to keep something cold, ask the folks at reg: we may be able to store stuff in one of the volunteer suites or similar.
Does the con accommodate people with disabilities?
To the best of our own abilities, yes. The hotel has ADA accessible rooms, and there should be similar access for all events at the hotel. If you need an ASL interpreter, please contact us as far as advance as possible and we will do our best to get one for you. We also try to take into account things like sensory sensitivities when planning the parties.
Is it safe?
We work hard to create an environment where people feel safe, secure and respected. No attendee will be required to attend or participate in any activity. All con events, parties and presentations are optional. WEEHU has clear rules governing behavior of attendees to help everyone feel comfortable. Attendees are held responsible for respecting other people’s limits and being clear about their own.
I have never been to a kink-friendly, sex-positive event before. What is it like?
WEEHU is attended by people of a variety of ethnicities, genders, gender presentations, sexual orientations, relationship types, relationship statuses, ages and backgrounds, with all manner of fetishes and kinks. All are welcome. You should expect people to be respectful and friendly in their interactions with you.
During the day, it will mostly be hypnosis, socializing and classes, but you may see a variety of kinky play going on, with people in various states of undress. You may see people having sexualized or kinky interactions such as having hypnotic orgasms, bondage, wearing collars, latex, calling each other by titles, using protocol, etc.
During the parties, expect to see all manner of play & intensity, including sex. There may be bondage equipment such as spanking benches, restraint devices, St. Andrew’s crosses, etc. It is totally okay to politely, quietly watch from a respectful distance as long as you aren’t blocking access to play furniture when doing so. If you want to avoid seeing a heavy scene or graphic sex, wander on to another room. Some party rooms will be mostly socializing but you will still likely see nudity and lower-intensity play there as well, such as aftercare or snuggling.
The hotel lobby & eating area will always be a largely vanilla space.
Are there day passes?
Short answer: No. All tickets are for the full weekend. You are, of course, welcome to attend as little or as much of the event as you like. Long answer: If you really can only make it for an afternoon or evening, and you contact us in advance, we may be able to make some accommodation for you.
Can I get a discount?
Discounted or comped admission is available to volunteers who work a certain number of hours. Please visit those pages on our website for more info on details and deadlines.
Can I get a refund?
Short answer: No. Long answer: Please talk with us at least three weeks in advance, and we will see what we can do to help you! No refunds are offered after that point, due to sunk costs.
What makes it an Unconference?
We use the term somewhat loosely; unlike many unconferences, our presentation schedule is mostly planned in advance. However, we will have an Unconference-only period on the Sunday morning of the con, for content brainstormed or requested on-site. If you have a particular topic you’d like to learn more about, or one you think people would like to present on, join us at 10:30am Sunday morning!
Can you tell me about the play parties?
Absolutely! We will have play parties happening on the 3rd floor of the hotel on Friday and Saturday nights, after dinner until late. All 4 of our classrooms on that floor will be converted into playspaces, and our con hospitality room(s) will also be open for social space and hydrating/snacking. (Hypnosis can happen in the hospitality suite but we prefer it to stay on the lighthearted/playful side of the spectrum). We also may have some social activities going on in the conference room downstairs.
We will be having some special events/scheduled demos during the first few hours of the parties. Please check the schedule for more info on that, as the event approaches.
You will also be welcome to open up your room and have it become part of the party! However, unless your room is on the 3rd floor, the party cannot spill out into the hallway and people will need to be dressed vanilla-friendly when going to/from your room! On the 3rd floor, you can prop your door wide open. On the 1st or 2nd floor, you can put a sign about the party on the door, and leave it open a crack.
Please see the Party Floor Rooms page for more info on opening up your third-floor room during the party 🙂
We encourage and allow all flavors of play at our parties, including sex. We will have 1 room especially set up for less-intense play such as gentle hypnosis scenes, snuggling, aftercare, light sensation play, sensual rope, etc., and 2 rooms meant for more intense or loud scenes such as S&M, more intense sensation, edge play, orgasmic torture, etc. etc.
We will have Playspace Monitors available to provide assistance and information to people, and protect life/limb/hotel property, but they will not interrupt scenes unless it’s for a very serious or urgent reasons. If you have interest in/concerns or questions about someone else’s scene, it is not okay to interrupt them but you are encouraged to ask a Monitor and/or bring the scene to their attention.
What kind of play can I do at the parties?
Please see the Con Rules for our current Play Party Rules
Can you tell me about the layout of the con?
Sure. When you walk into the hotel there is a big lobby with the front desk on the right-hand side. Just past that is a big dining area. If you/we want to order food in, or get a break from the intensity of the 3rd floor, this is a great place to hang out. We will have someone there checking badges, and at some times this may be a vendor area.
To the right of the dining area is a big conference room. Some classes will be held there. You will have to pass through the vanilla space of the lobby to get to them, so keep that in mind.
Moving on up to the 3rd floor: This is where all the rest of the classes are held, and it’s the party floor. All con space on this floor will be clearly marked and have a propped open door unless a door is closed for classes or it is before/after con hours. The hospitality room, where you can store your things if just visiting for the day, and/or get something to snack on or drink, is right across from the elevator.
The 3rd floor is 1 straight-line hallway. Our classrooms are the 4 suites on the floor. There are 2 of them on each end of the hallway.
We may have some vendors or information tables set up in the hall, and we’ll have a big copy of the con schedule grid set up on the hallway wall.
How do I pick up my badge, and/or register onsite?
There will be signs in the hotel directing you to a registration and badge pick-up desk. It will be on the ground floor during the busiest arrival times at the con, but may be migrating up to the 3rd floor on, say, Saturday afternoon.
If you are registering on-site, we will be accepting cash or credit cards. No checks, please. Processed card payments will be showing up on your credit card or bank statement as something discreet that cannot be readily recognized as payment to a sexy or kinky event.
If you are staying onsite with us, go to the hotel front desk to check into your room. The hotel knows what our event is and you do not have to be discreet when talking about it. If you have any further difficulties checking in, talk to folks at the con reg desk!
If I need to change something about my hotel room reservation, how do I do that?
Call the hotel!
Can I vend at WEEHU? Can you talk to me about vending?
We welcome vendors to WEEHU. There is no charge to vend this year. You can sell anything hypnosis or kink-related, OR anything that is handmade by you that you feel our attendees would be interested in. (As much as we think it would be amusing to have a Stepford Wives-style tupper-ware party, please don’t do that unless it’s a play scene and not an actual moneymaking venture!)
If you’d like to vend out of your room, you may do that all weekend if you like! Feel free to put a sign on your door.
Vending in the hallway will be both Friday and Saturday nights during the party. We will provide table space but cannot provide volunteers to help vend for you.
What’s happening on Thursday?
We start to do some con setup and load-in on Thursday afternoon. Thursday evening, we have an earlybird dinner, and there are some informal gatherings and maybe even introductory classes in the evening.
Can you tell me about Monday’s field trip?
Yes. We are having an end-of-con field trip to San Francisco on Monday after the con, from roughly noon until dinnertime. We try to be budget-conscious about what activities we choose You’re welcome to attend for all or some of it, your schedule allowing. We will have a ride share signup form posted by Saturday so that you can offer or find a ride, as we will not be providing a shuttle or other mass transportation.
Last year, we went to Golden Gate Park and strolled up Strawberry Hill, went shopping on Clement Street for kinky clothes & books, had ice cream and then went back to the hotel to have our own dispersed dinners, then snuggling and casual hanging out in a presenter’s suite!
Where can I park?
Parking is free in the hotel parking lot for hotel guests. If you’re just visiting the con for the day, there is relatively easy street parking in the surrounding neighborhood, and a limited amount of guest parking at the hotel itself.
Public transit options to the venue?
The best public-transit way to access the hotel is via Caltrain. Belmont Station is a 12-minute walk away. If you are coming from anywhere on the BART line, you can transfer to Caltrain at Millbrae station–Belmont is only a couple stops south.
How do I get from the airport to the hotel?
The fastest way would be via cab, Lyft, or Uber, or via finding someone in our Fetlife group to give you a ride. The hotel is a 15 minute drive from the airport; cab rates would be about $40, Lyft would be about $28.
The public transit option is straightforward, but involves more steps: Take BART to Millbrae. Once at Millbrae, transfer to Caltrain and take it to Belmont. The hotel is a 12 minute walk from Belmont Station.
What is the age minimum for WEEHU?
The age minimum is 18.
Will there be nudity or sex at the con?
Yes and yes, though relatively little of either (depending on how you define these things) during class time vs. at the parties. Nudity is only allowed on the 3rd floor or inside the conference room–the rest of the hotel is vanilla space.
Can I play or practice trance during class time?
Yes, provided (of course) that it doesn’t disrupt classes or other scenes.
I don’t consider myself kinky, but I’m interested in hypnosis. Is this con a good fit for me?
Yes, we have many classes that are hypnosis-only, and there will be other attendees like you! This would also be a friendly no-pressure environment for you to learn more about kink and kinky people. However: if you’re uncomfortable seeing other people be kinky or talk about kink, this may be outside of your comfort zone.
I have zero experience with hypnosis, but am curious. Is this con a good fit for me?
Yes, we have lots of beginner-friendly material, and many friendly people very interested in mentoring and education! Prior attendees have reported to us that they learned more in that one weekend than they could have learned through a year of solo research and practice.
I have zero interest in becoming a hypnotist, but I want to be hypnotized or experience trance. Is this con a good fit for me?
Yes! Not only will there be many opportunities to volunteer as a demo subject in classes, and social opportunities to meet available hypnotists, but we also have many classes for subjects!
How are your presenters selected?
Presenters are selected through a variety of ways:
- We invite great presenters from prior years to return.
- We approach people who gave great presentations at other events we attended (our monthly meetups, NEEHU, MEEHU, or other kinky events that had crossover content) and invite them to present * for us.
- We invite presenters who were highly recommended by others in the hypnokink community.
- We issue an informal call for presentations in our Fetlife group.
- Potential presenters who hear about our event contact us privately.
If I want to present, how would I go about that?
Our presenters’ list is curated: not everyone who applies to the event is accepted, and not all presentations they would like to offer end up on the schedule. Some considerations we take into account are:
- What are their skills as a presenter?
- Does their offered material fill a unique and/or needed niche in the con’s program?
- Does their offered material complement or fit closely enough to our focus on erotic hypnosis?
If someone approaches us to present, and we aren’t familiar with them and/or have never seen them teach, we may ask them to send us a sample video of one of their classes, give a demo presentation with us in person or via video chat, and/or provide references from someone else in the erotic hypnosis or overall kink community.
We reserve the right, at any time, for any reason (stated or unstated) to refuse to allow someone to present.
Please be aware, up front, that our event operates on a shoestring budget that prioritizes community-building and affordability above all else. However, depending on the material on offer and the amount of financial need, we also do our best to accommodate presenters’ financial requirements. So, if you need some level of financial contribution or assistance from us to get you to WEEHU, don’t be afraid to talk to us, but please be aware that our resources are very limited.