Tonight, the boy band One Direction will take the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards for a much-hyped performance. This fact is making me feel very old, because all the young people on the internet are freaking out about it and I’m like, “Wait, what is a One Direction?” This stands in stark contrast to my lifestyle in the ’90s, when my love for boy bands–namely the Backstreet Boys–was so intense I spent all my time talking about them, listening to them, watching their music videos, going to their concerts, writing them semi-desperate letters, making artful collages of their headshots, buying behind-the-scenes DVDs, and planning my inevitable BSB wedding. Yep, I knew–and still know–pretty much everything there is to know about the Backstreet Boys, but I know pretty much nothing about One Direction. Here are nine specific discrepancies that my 14-year-old self would be ashamed of… Keep reading »
The first thing you need to know is that I didn’t start masturbating until the age of 17. I’d gone through the ol’ puberty at 12 – I’d felt the universal stirrings down below – but it took me that extra five years to work out what I ought to do about it. Had I been interviewed at age 15 about female arousal, I would’ve said something like, “The only way to reach orgasm is through having sex.”
I believed that this feeling, whatever it was, could be … solved, let’s say, solely through use of the male penis. (As though there’s any other kind!)
But, oh: How wrong I was.
It’s hard to remember exactly what happened when finally it struck me all those years later that I could tend to things myself. I know the movie “Gas, Food, Lodgings” was involved. I’d been watching it in the basement of my family’s empty house, and there’d been some scene wherein some attractive male actor pushes Ione Skye up against a wall, and then they have very satisfying sex in an upright position in what appears to be a cave. It was terribly arousing, and the house was so terribly empty, and somehow, finally, I saw my right hand, and I knew. Keep reading »
With election season upon us, the call is out for campaign volunteers, and many of us are hitting the pavement to help the candidates and causes we believe in. Besides phone-banking, the most common form of civic engagement is canvassing, which basically consists of hanging out on the street with a clipboard or going door to door talking to voters. I’ve canvassed to drum up support for politicians, gather signatures for Planned Parenthood, and spread the word about marriage equality. It’s not my favorite thing to do, but it’s an important job, and at the end of the day I feel accomplished–plus I always head home with some great stories to tell. Whether you’re an experienced canvasser or are thinking about getting in on the action, here’s a little summary of the people you’ll meet in a typical afternoon on the job… Keep reading »
I don’t obsessively wash my hands; in fact, I spend most of my time barefoot, germs faze me that little. I don’t feel an inexplicable need to count things. I don’t have any good luck charms, either physical (objects) or mental (numbers, letters, etc.). But I do have moderate OCD that has, over the course of my life, manifested itself in various ways at varying degrees of intensity.
OCD runs in my family; both my late grandmother and my uncle were/are incredibly repetitive people. My mom also has certain OCD behaviors; leaving her neat and orderly nest to go to college caused my OCD to emerge so I could instill a sense of order that I needed to feel safe. Looking back, my most extreme periods of obsessive compulsive behavior coincided with times when I was most unhappy, stressed, or conflicted about something. Attending to my various OCD needs gave me a place to focus all my anxiety and helped calm my mind. For a few years, I cleaned my apartment constantly, mopping the kitchen floor three times a day and fretting over whether my bedspread was laid perfectly symmetrical across my bed. I could spot a dust bunny from 30 feet away. It was maddening, but you could eat breakfast off my bathroom floor.
Nowadays, for a variety of reasons — medication that manages my associated issues with anxiety and ADD, general satisfaction with my life, ongoing therapy, a housekeeper who comes once a month, and new learned coping mechanisms — my OCD is much better. Sometimes I let dishes sit in the sink overnight. My remote control does not have to sit perfectly straight on my coffee table. I would vacuum less if Lucca didn’t shed so much. But my OCD does come out in some kind of random, less obvious ways. Here are some of them… Keep reading »
This piece is part of The Frisky’s How To Deal Week, in which we’re tackling mental health issues.
As an oldest child/perfectionist/control freak/Taurus, asking for help is one of my least favorite things. Whether I’m doing a crossword puzzle or weathering an emotional storm, I’ll handle it on my own, thankyouverymuch. Over the past year, though, I’ve been dealing with some pretty intense life changes and found myself in the position where I literally couldn’t get through it alone. I was drowning, and I had no choice but to reach out and grab the outstretched hands of my amazing friends, who pulled me to shore and gently guided me toward the office of a therapist, where I swallowed my pride and said, “You know what? I’m not doing so well.” In the process, I learned how important it is to be able to ask for help, especially when you’re feeling lost, overwhelmed, or alone. Here’s why… Keep reading »