A few weeks ago I found myself in a peculiar situation. But first, let me give you some background.
I live in New York City but grew up in Akron, Ohio, which is located in a region where landscapes switch between cement tundra and golden cornfields as quickly as one pop song flips to the next on your car radio. In a way, this is emblematic of the people who reside or have resided there: we shift easily between modern-liberal and traditional-conservative thought (hence, a swing state). In my 27 years, I’ve seen this dichotomy play out in two key scenarios: the presidential election of 2004 and a recent trip home to attend my first non-family member baby shower. Keep reading »
I stopped drinking when I was 29. I was tired of the consequences outweighing the benefits — tired of calling in sick to work, tired of hooking up with people I would have run from sober, tired of crying and throwing things for no reason. Oh, and did I mention I was tired of all the drama drinking brought to my love life? Sure, there were the occasional incident-free drunken date nights. But when men were brought into the mix(ed drink), I didn’t tend to remain the cute, funny little version of me. My usually-sharp wit would dull into a mushy puddle of need. You know what I’m talking about: “You don’t realllllllly love me! I don’t believe you love me! I need you to love me! Do you promise you love me?” Ugh. Keep reading »
One day as I was walking around the city, a few hours after I’d peed on a stick in my office toilet and that tell-tale plus sign came up, it dawned on me that every single person I was passing—every single old man, young child, bored teen, chubby woman, skinny fashionista, homeless guy, what have you—began life in the very same way: via a freaked-out woman who didn’t know what the hell she was getting herself into. Keep reading »
A few years ago, I slept with your husband. Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t some kind of an apology. Nor is it an explanation. And, trust me, I’m not looking for your forgiveness. Because here’s the thing. All these years later, you don’t even know. Or at least I don’t think you do. Sometimes I see you, and sometimes I see him, and sometimes I see the two of you together, and it’s like nothing happened. But if you ever wake up one day and realize what happened, here’s why I slept with your husband. Keep reading »
I used to be defined by one singular character: ambition. As early as 9th grade, I knew that I wanted to be a journalist who wrote long-form investigative articles. And for nine or 10 years, everything about my life was focused around that one goal: where I went to school, how I spent my “free” time, who my friends were, even whom I dated. It’s not an exaggeration to say my drive consumed my life — and I was perfectly OK, even pleased, with that. I seriously believed that at long last I would finally be happy when people bought magazines with my writing in them.
The thing is, ambition for ambition’s sake turns out to be a hollow way to live one’s life. It’s a means to an end, of course, but considering that the target you are shooting for is constantly shifting, it can also be exhausting. Don’t misunderstand me: I’m proud of my accomplishments — articles I’ve written, interviews I’ve conducted, maybe a few lives I’ve affected. But if I could go back in time and change a few things, I just might do it.
And the first thing that I would change? I would not have dated so many men whose careers I envied. Life is hard enough when you’re putting unreasonable expectations on yourself to succeed, but it’s damn near impossible when you’re comparing yourself to someone you’re sleeping with. Keep reading »
I’m a freelance private investigator based in Paris. I don’t stalk people and I don’t wear a trench coat and sunglasses—unless it’s simultaneously raining and sunny. My company conducts investigations of high-flying financiers. While I have no interest in the finance world whatsoever, my entire income derives from it, and in last year’s economic crisis, I had zero income for three solid months. Keep reading »
When John Mayer’s supremely ignorant Playboy interview hit the wires, I, like most people, was appalled. Not just by his idiotic racism, but by the way he spoke about his exes. I mean, the dude compared Jessica Simpson to crack! Said she was like “sexual napalm!” What a jerk! I mean, how indiscreet!
I watched Jessica Simpson tell Oprah that no, she hadn’t forgiven him for his big fat mouth and was disappointed that he’d sunk so low. I harrumphed, “You go, Jessica!” as I high-fived my TV screen.
Then I recalled how many times I’d blabbed about exes. I’ve been writing about relationships, often my own, for the past 10 years. In that time, I’ve done some serious dishing—and dissing. The truth is, most of my recountings were far less flattering than what John had to say about Jessica.
My name is Judy and I am a hypocrite. Keep reading »
I was sitting at brunch last weekend eating greasy eggs with one of my guy friends. “So, how’s the love life?” I asked.
“Eh,” Tom replied shrugging his shoulders.
“What? You’re not hunting and fishing?” I asked, doing my best Patti Stanger impression.
“Nah, it’s not that,” he said. “It’s just that dating is so … so expensive.” Expensive? That’s a new one. And sadly I’ve been hearing a lot of guys say it lately. What’s up with that? It shouldn’t be too expensive to date. Keep reading »
I’ve made no secret of the fact that I eventually want a long-term, committed relationship and kids. But I’ve recently come to the realization that I also don’t think I ever want to share my living space with another adult. For the first time in my life, I live alone and I love it. These two desires — to have kids with someone and to live alone — do not really go hand in hand. Crap. Keep reading »
I texted him as soon as I woke up.
“What do you want me to wear today?”
I brushed my teeth and washed my face while I waited for him to text me back.
“White button-down shirt. Tuck it in. Your jeans. Flats. Put your hair in a ponytail. Send me a photo.”
I dressed as instructed, then stood before the wall-length mirror in my apartment’s hallway. Smiling into the mirror, I snapped a photo on my iPhone and sent it to Ben*.
Thirty seconds later, a text message: “Very nice.” Then I knew I could leave for work.
Ben was not abusive. I was not being hurt, nor was I unhappy. We were in a dominant/submissive relationship — or playing at one, anyway — and following his orders got me unbelievably, unbelievably turned on. Keep reading »