We both knew we needed to have a talk, but neither of us were saying anything. Over the past couple of weeks, ever since Baby Face and I agreed to slow down our relationship, I’ve done a lot of thinking. My feelings for Baby Face hadn’t faltered one bit and our communication had actually become more frequent, but we’d gone almost two weeks without seeing each other and I didn’t like it. He didn’t either. Most of our recent conversations had been sprinkled with comments or mentions of his money woes, and how he wishes he could just “go to happy hour without feeling guilty” or wake up just one morning without thinking about paying bills, and as much as I didn’t want to face the music, I knew deep down that our decision to “pump the brakes” wasn’t going to change the fact that our relationship was running on fumes. Keep reading »
This Saturday, entertainment blog The Wrap posted a stunningly tone-deaf guest op-ed entitled “The Rape of Bill Cosby.” The tongue-in-cheek opening line read “Bill Cosby raped me.” And that was the best part of the entire debacle. The remainder of the piece, which was meant to be an excoriation of liberal media (on a liberal media site no less – gotta love life’s rich pageant), has instead become Exhibit A in the case of The Wrap engendering rape culture, and it is a steaming pile of gross, triggering garbage. Keep reading »
Every new relationship comes with its own bag of possibilities and pitfalls. We approach new romance hopefully, keeping our eyes peeled for warning signs and red flags that might tip us off about a character flaw or mismatch, and determine an outcome accordingly. But everybody’s past is different, and depending on what you want and need from a relationship, what might be a red flag to one person might not be a red flag to others.
I’ve noticed a recurring theme in the comments on Dater X about what may or may not be red flags in my dating adventures. One commenter wrote “Dater X seems to have a huge problem reading between the lines,” while another said, “It’s becoming pretty clear that something is off in her dating choices.” Do I? Is it? Yeah, I’m going to disagree with you there. I know exactly what I’m looking for and what to be worried about. What I’m not doing is making snap judgments about someone’s character or our potential compatibility based on one thing that’s said or done. What I might see as a no-harm difference in personalities might make you say run as fast as you fucking can. So what exactly are the warning signs that I look for in a new partner? Allow me to explain… Keep reading »
My parents separated during my senior year of high school. That was bad enough, not because I was upset at the time about them separating, but because that first holiday season was weird — my dad was there, but only begrudgingly on my mom’s part — and once the divorce proceedings started and things got ugly, we started having to split up the holidays. My dad had moved to Madison, Wisconsin, while my mom had the house in a Chicago suburb that we’d grown up in, so it was easier for my sisters and I to do Christmas stuff with my mom. But it was a balancing act.
It got worse when I got into a relationship with my now-ex, the year I graduated from high school, because his family was intensely territorial about holidays and easily offended. So I had to see my dad, I had to see my mom and sisters, I had to see my ex’s mom and siblings, and, if possible, we’d spend time with his dad, too, but not always. Two sets of divorced parents is a pain in the ass. It’s bad when it’s two sets of parents, period, but four gets extreme. My dad has learned to work around this problem by doing family get-togethers before or after the actual holiday. Keep reading »
Do I need to link to anything that says “[Fill in the name of a woman] is getting naked on camera for attention”? It’s been said about me. It’s being said about Kim Kardashian. It’s been said about any woman who’s ever voluntarily had a photo taken in any kind of sexualized context, and several non-sexualized contexts, for that matter.
I can’t speak for anyone else, but here’s what you do to me when you say that I take nude, sexualized photos for attention: You claim that you know my intentions. Are you a mind-reader? To my knowledge, that’s not a thing that exists. So do you know me intimately? No, you don’t, and no one who knows me intimately thinks or says that I take nudes for attention. So what you’re doing is implying that I’m a liar when I say, “No, this is not for attention,” and/or you’re assuming that attention is the only possible motivation any woman could ever have for taking a picture of herself naked, and possibly claiming that you know myself, or any woman, better than we know ourselves. That you have insight on the female character (because women are a monolith) that females don’t have if they state that they are not taking nude pictures for attention. Keep reading »
While watching your partner have sex with another person is common enough to play a vibrant role in swinging and orgies, and to spawn porn parodies like “One Flew Over the Cuckold’s Nest,” in general it’s safe to assume that a conversation regarding your partner’s sexual history rarely ends well. Recalling Amsterdam trips at 19 or drunken indiscretions with a married man upon moving to New York typically don’t make for the best dirty talk. While honesty is the best policy, exchanging such details in a new relationship often leaves you wishing you left them in your past like your Bob Marley wall tapestry rather than stamped on your present like the peace sign tattoo on your ass.
As a sex writer, I can attest to the usefulness of personal anecdotes in writing. (See: This article.) People tend to be more interested in learning about “sounding” (the practice of inserting objects up the urethra) when you can describe a British man exhibiting such a kink in your bed after a tea date than simply an interview with a sexologist on the practice standing alone. Less clinical, more relatable, with a punch of humor. “The truth is stranger than fiction” said Mark Twain, although I don’t think he was referring to pinkies up pee-holes. While the general population tends to appreciate such tales, the one reader group that grimaces, perhaps secondary to my parents, are my boyfriends. Keep reading »