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Couple Celebrates Their New Commitment To Each Other

Angie and Diane recently came into the studio as a way to celebrate their new commitment to each other after being together for more than 17 years. 

The two met through a mutual friend 22 years ago. 

“We became very close friends. Upon leaving a 10-year relationship, and not knowing how I was going to make it on my own, Diane offered to let me live with her until I got back on my feet. During that time, our friendship grew closer. Day in and day out, talking, sharing our lives, cooking together, all of those things strengthened our friendship,” says Angie. 

As Angie began making preparations to move out into her own home, she realized that was beginning to develop feelings beyond friendship for Diane. 

“I was terrified to talk to her about them. I didn’t want to ruin the amazing friendship we had. We had helped each other through some really tough times. I couldn’t imagine my life without her, so I kept my feelings to myself,” she said.

The closer it got to moving day, the bigger the knot in Angie’s stomach grew. 

“I had to say something. I risked it all, told her about my feelings, only to find out that she felt the same way!”

Angie decided to still move out and after a year and a half of dating she moved back in as Diane’s partner. 17 and a half years later they are engaged to be married. 

When asked what she loves the most about Angie, Diane says, “Her smile, sense of humor, her eyes sparkle when she looks at me. How she holds me, touches me and kisses me. Her gentleness. She’s very passionate. Her love for animals and her dedication to being a spokesperson for animals.”

Angie said she loves Diane’s “Beautiful blue eyes. Her smile. The way she laughs with her whole face and how she can make me laugh even when I don’t want to. She’s sexy and playful. She’s generous, loving and compassionate. How she makes me feel when she kisses me and touches me. How a certain look can take my breath away and make me wet.”

Like many couples in loving long term relationships, Diane and Angie have struggled to stay connected and to keep things feeling new and exciting. 

“In our relationship, we had been struggling to be and stay connected for several years. Through hard work and a lot of therapy, we started on a new path. The session with Mike was a gift to ourselves to celebrate our new commitment to each other,” said Angie. 

Everything about the session, from the lead up, to the big reveal of their photos was exciting. 

“Once we had the initial call with Mike, we both began to get excited. We started planning our outfits and thinking about poses we wanted. We had so much fun shopping for the outfits and accouterments for the red room,” says Diane. 

Diane’s favorite outfits that Angie wore were her jeans, tank top, and then her blue and silver matching bra and panty set. Angie’s favorite outfits of Diane’s were her lacy black bra with matching panties and knee high leather boots and of course her full body leather harness. 

Angie: “The day started out with both of us very nervous. The makeup artist was wonderful. She was so friendly and calming. She did an amazing job! She made us look so beautiful! After the first outfit change, we were able to relax and really get into it. It became about being in the moment and celebrating us instead of worrying about how many chins were going to show up in the photos or sucking it in so there’s only two rolls instead of three. We had an absolute blast!! At times, we forgot Mike was there.”

Afterwards, at the big reveal, “We were both shocked! We had never seen ourselves on film in that way,” Angie says. 

They decided to create an album of their favorites as well as a canvas. They hope to get even more wall art in the future and have plans for another session. 

“We look at our book every night. We’ve shown it to a few choice friends. They’ve all remarked how Mike really captured our essence. Captured how we are with each other. That is such a gift he has given us. We came away with wonderful memories. Lifelong memories. A renewed realization of how sexy and loved we feel together and about each other. We felt pampered. We felt validated and we felt celebrated. I personally came away from this experience liking my body a little more. I’ve never seen myself as sexy, until now. It has truly been life changing for me. Issues of body image I’ve been fighting my whole life have been lessened by this experience. I am eternally grateful.”

Ready to join Angie and Diane and to see what all the hype is about? Book your own boudoir session by calling 610.539.6920 or by visiting  http://allebachphotography.com/contact/

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couples boudoir

Couples Boudoir: Meredith and Debbie’s Story

Real Couples Boudoir Photoshoots Chronicles: Stories at Allebach Photography

Hot Couples Boudoir Photoshoot

 

Meredith was thrilled – not to mention a little shocked – when her girlfriend, Debbie, agreed to do a couple’s boudoir session with her.Couples Boudoir Photoshoot

Couples Boudoir

“The photo shoot was right up my alley and not ever something I thought she would consider. Trust me, she agreed to do it for me. I never dreamed it would go so well! She loved it. Not just the amazing photos but the whole process,” Meredith shares.

Couples Boudoir Wall Artwork
Actual artwork above client’s bed

Their love story is a little risqué for the stereotypical law enforcement type.

The two met in D.C. when Debbie (who recently retired) was a Deputy U.S. Marshal at Superior Court and Meredith was just a “baby” lawyer, having recently graduated from law school.

“I was a law clerk for one of the judges at the same courthouse. I, uh, developed a thing for the U.S. Marshals, who staff Super Court. So much so that when the judges were looking for a deputy to transport a prisoner or something and the marshals were not answering downstairs, they would call my judge’s chambers. There were always deputies in there!” says Meredith.

Women's Couples Boudoir Photoshoot

Letting loose and law enforcement aren’t exactly two terms people tend to string together; But Meredith says that’s exactly what their boudoir session allowed them to do.

“She had so much fun, laughing and giggling and talking about crazy stuff we did when we met 18 years ago. You caught that I said giggling, right? Just FYI, law enforcement types…not big on giggling… I am sure none of you know about that stuff, having never, ever interacted with an officer of the law before,” she jokes.

Couples Boudoir LGBTQ

The next day Debbie sent Meredith a text about how much fun they had, using words like magic, fun, flirty and sensuous.

The most important part of the couples boudoir session

But the most important words were the ones Debbie said to her on the way home from the studio the day of the photo shoot.

Sexy Couples Boudoir PhotoshootDebbie said to Meredith, “You know I never like the way I look in pictures, but in these pictures, I actually look pretty.” 

Isn’t She Beautiful?

“I was shocked. Look, she is gorgeous. I’ve been telling her that for years! But it doesn’t matter what other people tell us. We all need to see ourselves up on the wall in all that Technicolor glory to really believe it. To truly realize ‘I’m pretty. I’m hot.’”

The couple recently picked up their artwork, ordering a huge album to look back on.

In love Couples Boudoir Photoshoot“You absolutely cannot put a price on what it has done for our relationship, our confidence, our happiness & our mental health. Trust me. It’s the gift that keeps on giving! After our experience, I am confident Mike and his team can make anyone comfortable. That is the Allebach magic!”

Meredith has already persuaded her girlfriend to do a bodyscaping photo session with Mike for her birthday this summer.

Couples Boudoir LGBTQ 2

“I’m planning to get hot and naughty in a session with her Dodge Challenger in the fall,” she said. “I could have worse vices…”

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Book your session by calling 610.539.6920 or visiting http://www.allebachphotography.com/contact/ 

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From Ignorant to Ally: My Personal Story


“Mike, I can’t tell you what to do, you know that.  People here won’t like you photographing gay weddings.  You don’t have to take the weddings. Just tell them you have plans.  I’ll make plans for you if you need plans.”

Those were the words of my pastor over 10 years ago. I had decided to give them a heads up that I was going to be photographing same-sex weddings and unions.  The pastor’s response was shocking and not shocking at the same time. I was kind of expecting it. For me, this moment was a line in the sand. This moment represented my break with the church and the Republican party and everything those two interlinked structures of power and control represented.

Looking back I remember sitting in a meeting where the debate among pastors was “should the church baptize a lesbian couple?” And they called themselves the accepting church. What was so clear in my mind was not clear in others who considered themselves open and accepting.

My upbringing was based around universal concepts humans share: love, belonging and acceptance. We were nestled in a community based between Philadelphia and Amish country full of non-confrontational Mennonites and a local Catholic church.  The subject of same-sex marriage rarely came up in our conservative community publically that I remember. I was ignorant in the more pure sense of the word. I didn’t know what I didn’t know.  I didn’t know the struggle, I didn’t know the non-acceptance, inequality inherent in the system, bullying, the graffiti, and the violence the LGBTQ community faced. 

It wasn’t until middle school I even knew what the word gay meant.  And in the 90s classmates in school used “gay” as slang for something dumb. In high school, a few kids came out as gay but that was the extent to it. You don’t know what you don’t know. And I didn’t know a lot.

Like many, I wasn’t fond of some of my high school experience.  I had this ongoing nagging feeling like I didn’t fit in. That feeling translated into punk rock music at the time.  Later on, when I started my business, I decided to be the photographer for people who didn’t have a photographer.  A photographer for the punk rock kids.  As you probably guessed, I didn’t listen to the pastor and starting photographing Gay Unions and weddings.

My clients have inspired me so much. When photographing LGBTQ weddings, the most intense part was hearing their stories and hearing the stories their families shared.  Over the years I’ve heard dozens of cringy turned triumphant speeches from the parent who share their journey of acceptance.   They started out shocked or in disbelief and came to love their child even more. Sadly, not all stories shared have happy endings yet. I’ve also heard the tragic stories of family members who still aren’t there yet. It is unfathomable to me that some parents are unwilling to accept their children.

My journey from ignorance about what LGBTQ couples in my community faced was changed by the beautiful people I photograph.  The common story I’ve heard when talking with parents of children from conservative backgrounds is they didn’t personally know gay people.  They took what their churches said as gospel until their children came out.  They’ve said to me it was a “political issue” until it was my son.  

If you’ve ever been to a same-sex or queer wedding, you know you are in for some both amazingly beautiful and some heart-wrenching stories.  Usually, the wedding ceremony shares pieces of the couple’s story.  You might hear how they found each other and maybe you’ll learn a bit about the marriage equality battle fought in the supreme court.  If you are like me, you’ll have allergies and find your eyes watering.  You’ll leave with more understanding and more hope for a better future in America.  

Photographing LGBTQ weddings has taught me so much about being a better ally.  I feel guilty that I once was a part of a system and a church that didn’t accept people for who they are. I’m sad I once supported a political party who didn’t support the full rights of our neighbors and friends. If I had a time machine, my ally journey would have started in high school. I would have supported each people coming out. 

Maybe just like me, it’s time for you to leave a toxic or anti-LGBTQ church or leave a faith that really just wants to exert power and control.  Maybe it’s time to change political parties to one supporting LGBTQ rights.

But like the countless stories I’ve heard at weddings,  I believe we can become better allies. The journey isn’t over yet.  We need to listen to the LGBTQ community.  In hearing stories of others we all become better.  In listening, we learn to love and understand. 

No matter what letter you represent: Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, Queer or Ally, we can create community wherever we go. 

To everyone coming out today,  I hope you find more support than you ever imagined and find a new belonging and community.  You are so worthy of love and belonging as you are. Let us know how we can be better allies in the comments.


 Mike AllebachMike Allebach loves photographing couples. He has been featured in Offbeat Bride, Cosmopolitan and Huffington Post.  Learn more about weddings and couples boudoir at allebachphotography.com.