CVIndependent

Thu07162020

Last updateMon, 20 Apr 2020 1pm

I’m a 31-year-old female. Last week, I suddenly started to experience an overwhelming, compulsive and near-constant state of physical arousal. I’ve masturbated so much looking for relief that my entire lower region is super sore and swollen—and still, it is like my whole body is pulsating with this electric arousal telling me to ignore the pain and do it again.

I have no idea if it’s normal to suddenly have suck a spike in libido, and I know a lot of people will say they wish they had this problem, but it is interfering with my daily activities, because I can’t focus on anything else. My college classes are suffering because of it. I’ve even had to remove my clitoral hood piercing, which I’ve had that for over 10 years!

I feel like I have all of the reasons—high anxiety related to the pandemic, being stuck with an alcoholic boyfriend in the house, tons of homework, finances are low—to warrant a lack of arousal, so why am I drowning in it? Everything I’m learning in class states that sexual desire lowers throughout one’s life span, so why am I literally pulsating with it? I really don’t want to call my doctor if I don’t have to. Any insight would be appreciated.

Chronically Aroused

“There’s a general belief that sexual arousal is always wanted—and the more, the better,” said Robyn Jackowich. “But in reality, persistent and unwanted sexual arousal can be very distressing.”

Jackowich is a Ph.D. candidate at Queen’s University, where she works under the supervision of Dr. Caroline Pukall in the Sexual Health Research Lab. Jackowich has published numerous studies on persistent genital arousal disorder (PGAD), a condition characterized by a constant or frequently recurring state of genital arousal—sensations, sensitivity, swelling—in the absence of sexual desire.

“In other words, there is a disconnect between what is happening in one’s body and mind,” said Jackowich, “and this can be both distressing and distracting.”

While you would think stress would tank your libido—and preliminary research shows that the pandemic is tanking more libidos than it’s not—stress and anxiety can actually be triggers for PGAD.

As you’ve learned, CA, you can’t masturbate your way out of this. So what do you do? Unfortunately, it’s the thing you’d really rather not do: Call your doctor.

“It’s important to meet with a knowledgeable healthcare provider to ensure there is not another concern present that may be responsible for the symptoms, and to access treatment,” said Jackowich. “Research on treatments for PGAD is relatively new, so it can be helpful to meet with a team of different healthcare providers to find what treatments would be most effective for you specifically. This could include a gynaecologist, urologist, pelvic-floor physical therapist, neurologist, and/or psychologist with expertise in sex therapy.”

Talking with your doctor about this may be embarrassing, I realize, and it doesn’t help that many doctors are unfamiliar with PGAD. Jackowich actually recommends bringing printouts of information pages and research papers about the condition to your appointment and sharing them with your physician. And if your doc doesn’t take your distress seriously and/or refuses to refer you to the specialists you need to see, CA, then you’ll need to get yourself a new doctor. (You can find those information pages and research papers at sexlab.ca/pgad, where you can also learn about currently available treatments and join support groups for sufferers.)

“More awareness of PGAD and research on this condition is needed to help understand the symptoms and develop effective treatments,” said Jackowich. “If you experience these symptoms and would like to contribute to ongoing research efforts, the Queen’s University Sexual Health Research Lab is seeking participants for an online study.” To take part in that online survey, go to sexlab.ca/pgad; click on “participate”; and scroll down to the “OLIVE Study.”


I’ve rekindled a romance with an ex from a decade ago. We are long distance right now but getting very close. We have one recurring problem, though: She does not like that I am friends with another ex. That ex has actually been a close friend for a very long time, and our friendship means a lot to me. Our romantic relationship only lasted a few months. But since we did have a romantic relationship once, my current girlfriend sees my ex as a threat.

I have reassured her several times that the relationship is in the past, and we are now only friends. But my girlfriend doesn’t want me to communicate with her at all. She wants me to un-friend her on Facebook and un-follow her Instagram, and at least once a week, she asks if we have been in contact. It is hard for me to throw a friend away in order to be in a relationship. Even though I don’t talk to my ex/friend all that regularly, I would like the option to at least check in every once in a while. Cutting her out of my life completely feels like a kind of death.

I wish there was some way I could find a compromise, but this seems to be one of those “all or nothing” things. I also don’t like this feeling of not being trusted and fear it could lead to other problems down the line.

Unhappy Girlfriend Has Sensitivities

I can see why your current girlfriend might feel threatened by your relationship with an ex, UGHS, seeing as she—your current girlfriend—was until very recently just another one of your exes. Since you got back together with her, the green-eyed monster whispers in her ear, what’s to stop you from getting back together with your other ex?

What the green-eyed monster doesn’t say, of course, is that you had every opportunity to get back together with your ex and didn’t. And cutting off your ex now doesn’t mean you can’t get back together with her later. And what’s to stop you from getting together with one of the 3.5 billion women you haven’t already dated?

You have to take a hard line on this. Tell your current girlfriend you’re happy to provide her with a little reassurance when she’s feeling insecure about your ex, but you’re not going to un-friend or un-follow her or anyone else. You can make an appeal to reason—you wouldn’t be with your current girlfriend if you were the sort of person who cut off contact with his exes—but if your current girlfriend is the irrationally jealous type … well, an appeal to reason won’t help. Irrationally jealous people are by definition incapable of seeing reason, UGHS, which is why they must be shown doors.


This isn’t a sexy question, but you are wise, and I am confused. I have been friends with a woman for about 16 years. She’s very funny, creative and loves to have a good time. She’s also intense and not very bright—and my family and friends do not like her around. Now that we’re grown, we do not see each other often, but I’ve been glad to maintain a friendship with her and get together now and again.

Enter: my wedding. At the reception, she made a fool of herself (and me) by going on some strange, racist rant. The racist thing really surprised and disappointed me, and when I asked her about it, she shrugged it off, like, “Oh, just add that to the list of dumb things I do when I’m drunk.” Other things she’d done when she’s drunk: two DUIs, waking up in jail with an assault charge, having sex with strangers, etc.

It’s been about seven months since my wedding, and I’ve basically been ignoring while trying to decide what to do. I love my friend, but I do not want her hurting anyone else on my watch. Do I call her up and end it? See her once a year when no one’s around? Ignore her until she dies?

Loyal To A Fault

Tell your racist friend to give you a call after she gets sober, and confront her about her racism then—you know, when she’s actually capable of remembering the conversation, reflecting on what you had to say, and perhaps changing for the better. If she can’t get both sober and better, LTAF, make sure she isn’t registered to vote, and then ignore her until she dies.

This week on the Savage Lovecast: Dan chats with our epidemiologist pal about the state of the pandemic, and also with the founder of the Badass Army—a group working to fight for victims of revenge porn: www.savagelovecast.com.

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I was raised in a religious home and didn’t lose my virginity until the embarrassing age of 26. I was told by the church to save it for marriage, and I was a virgin until I met the woman who would become my wife at a party. I said to hell with it; we had a one-night stand; and we’ve been together now for eight years.

I’m tall and slim, and my wife is short and heavy. Like an idiot, I believed it’s what’s on the inside that matters. My wife is the sweetest, most thoughtful person I’ve ever met. I love spending time with her, but I have absolutely no sexual attraction to her. As a result, I’ve all but stopped initiating sex, and on the rare occasion when we do make love, I make her come twice while I’m struggling just to get off.

I know it’s shallow, and I know beauty is only skin deep, but what am I supposed to do when seeing my wife naked sends me into an anxiety attack? When I’m helping out with laundry, I get bummed, because there’s nothing in her wardrobe I find attractive on her. Even when I look at old pictures of us together, I get extremely depressed, because I know this is the best she’s ever going to look. It doesn’t help that she finds me handsome and regularly tells me so.

It’s gotten to the point where I find any woman who isn’t my wife desirable. (Including, but not limited to, her family and friends.) I should also mention that she has no interest in having an open relationship or a threesome, because she prefers having me “all to herself.” I don’t want to ask her to change, because she’s perfectly happy with herself, but I’m becoming increasingly resentful.

What do I do? How do I tell her? And is there any way I can come out of this a good husband?

In The Shallows

I was so relieved to get all the way to the end of your letter without learning you had kids. Because that means I can advise you—with a clear conscience—to file for divorce, and move the fuck out just as soon as it’s possible to do so. Not for your own sake, ITS, but for your wife’s sake. She deserves better.

You say you’re growing increasingly resentful. I hope your resentment is directed at all of the people who victimized you. Your wife isn’t one of them. It’s your parents you should resent, ITS, as well as all the sex-phobic bullshit artists out there masquerading as “faith leaders.”

You should be angry with yourself, too. While I know from personal experience how a religious upbringing can put the zap on a kid’s head, you were a grown-ass man when you met your wife at that party. You couldn’t have slept with her that night—you couldn’t have lost your virginity in a one-night stand—if you hadn’t already rejected nearly everything you’d been taught about sex. If you were capable of having premarital sex, you were capable of refraining from marrying the first person you slept with.

Your wife is gonna want to know why you’re leaving her—of course she is—but you’re not going to tell her the real reason. You’re going to make something up. You want kids, and she doesn’t (or vice-versa); you married too young (which is true); you have unresolved childhood issues (and don’t we all). While you won’t be able to spare your wife the pain of a breakup, ITS, you can spare her the pain of learning the person she’s been sleeping with for eight years is repulsed by her body. You can’t be a good husband to her, ITS, but you can be decent ex-husband. And to do that—to be her decent and loving and supportive ex—you can’t set her self-esteem on fire on your way out the door.

And your wife’s body isn’t repulsive. She’s not someone you’re attracted to, ITS, and you’re not obligated to find short and round women sexually appealing. But while “tall and slim” are more closely associated with conventional concepts of attractiveness, ITS, not everyone’s into tall and slim. There are people who are into short and round, and people out there who are attracted to all body types, and people who are utterly indifferent to bodies. Your wife deserves the chance to find someone who’s sincerely attracted to her. Even being alone would be better than spending decades with someone who recoils from her touch.

For the record: What’s on the inside does count. It matters. If you met a woman who was more conventionally attractive—if you were with someone who was your idea of hot—and over time, she revealed herself to be an asshole (if she was rude to waiters, if she was emotionally abusive, if she was a Trump supporter, etc.), your attraction to her would wither away. What you want—not what you’ll get, ITS, but the best you can hope for—is some combo of hot on the outside (subjective and personal) and good on the inside. And the longer you’re with someone, ITS, the more important good on the inside becomes. Time is a motherfucking meat grinder, and it makes hamburger out of us all. If you prioritize your idea of hot over all other qualities, you run the very real risk of spending decades with a person who has aged out of hot and was never nice.

Longtime reader asking for advice. I’m a med student. I came to the U.S. when I was 18 in order to go to college, and I’m still in the U.S. I’m 25 now, and I’ve been dating my boyfriend for about three years now. We’re somewhat monogamous and have been living together for two years. I’m out as a gay man where we live, but my parents and family back in Brazil have zero idea. As you may know, Brazil has a weird relationship with sexuality. We’re seen and for the most part are very open, but our culture is also very homophobic. My BF has been pressuring me to come out, but I’ve been apprehensive, considering how important family is to me.

Fears A Massive Implosion Likely, Yet …

Gay men don't come out to our families because they’re unimportant to us. We come out to our families because they’re important to us.

Family is important to you, and you’re worried you might lose yours if you come out to them. But you’re definitely gonna lose them if you don’t. Because to keep your life a secret from them—to hide your boyfriend from them—you’re going to have to cut them out of your life. It'll be little things at first, FAMILY, but over time, the amount of things you have to keep from them grows. Lies pile up on top of lies, and the distance between you and your family grows. Before you know it, they don’t know you at all anymore, and you don’t know them—because you can’t risk letting them know you. So to avoid their possible rejection, you will have rejected them. You will have lost your family.

I know, I know: It’s scary. I came out to my very Catholic family when I was a teenager. I was scared to death. But if they couldn’t accept me for who I am—if I couldn’t rely on their love and support—what was the point of having them in my life at all?

By the way: No one likes being someone’s dirty little secret. It hurts your boyfriend to see the person who claims to love him prioritize his family’s presumed bigotry (it’s possible they’ll react more positively than you think) over his feelings and dignity. By not coming out, FAMILY, you will lose the family you were born into—and the one you’ve created with your boyfriend, too.

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I am a super-queer-presenting female who recently accepted that I have desires for men. My partner of two years is bisexual and understands the desires, but has personally dealt with those desires via masturbation—while my desires include acting. Her perspective is that the grass is greener where you water it, and that my desire to act is immature and selfish, and has an unrealistic end game. What gives when you don’t feel fulfilled sexually in a monogamous relationship?

Open Or Over?

Something definitely gives when a person doesn’t feel fulfilled in a monogamous relationship. Sometimes it’s an ultimatum that’s given; sometimes it’s a one-time-only hall pass that’s given; sometimes it’s an agreement to open the relationship that’s given. But the relationship sometimes gives, e.g., the relationship collapses under the weight of competing and mutually exclusive needs and desires. If you want to open things up (if allowed), and she wants to keep things closed (no allowance), OOO, it’s ultimately your willpower—your commitment to honoring the commitment you’ve made—that’s likely to give.

I have a close friend who’s cheating on her girlfriend. It has been going on for more than a year. At first, I actually supported the exploration, because my friend has a really unsupportive girlfriend who has done really crappy things to her over the course of their relationship. I kept pushing for her to make a decision and use this affair as a way for her to free herself, but she is just coasting along with her girlfriend and her lover. She’s under a lot of stress, and she’s turned into a major liar—and it’s creeping me out. I’m considering either telling her girlfriend myself (though I promised my friend I wouldn’t), or maybe I just need to end this friendship. My friend’s double life upsets me. It’s just been going on too long.

Is My Friend An Asshole?

If your friend—the one leading the double life—is asking you to run interference for her, if she’s asking you to lie to her girlfriend, or if she’s asked you to compromise your integrity in some way, she’s an asshole, and you’re a sap; tell your friend you’re done covering for her and that you won’t be able to see her again until the deceit or the pandemic is over, whichever comes first. If the issue is that your friend expects you to ooze sympathy while she goes on and on about the mess she’s made of her life, IMFAA, simply refuse to discuss the mess that is her love life. Remind her that she already knows what you think needs to do—she needs to break the fuck up with her shitty girlfriend—and then change the subject.

I’m a cis het woman who loves men and loves dicks. I love dicks so much that I fantasize about having one. Nothing brings me to orgasm more quickly or reliably than closing my eyes and imagining my own dick, or imagining myself as my partner, and what they’re feeling through their dick. I love being a woman, and I’m afraid to bring this up with any partner(s) of mine. Is this super-weird? Am I secretly trans somehow? Am I overthinking this?

Perfect Minus Penis

It’s not that weird; some people are trans, and you could be one of them (but fantasizing about having a dick ≠ being a male); and you’re overthinking what you should be enjoying. Buy a strap-on; tell your partners about your fantasies; and enjoy having the dick you can have.

I wonder if you might be able to put a label on this sex act: It has to do with overstimulation, in this case of a penis (mine). After receiving a wonderful hand job, the giver kept stroking me purposefully. My penis was in a heightened, super-sensitive state. It was almost like being tickled, if you’re ticklish. I was being forcefully held down (consensually), and just as I thought I couldn’t take it anymore, I had a second amazing orgasm. I didn’t ejaculate again; it was more of a body orgasm. It came in waves, and everything was warm. It was mind-blowing, spiritual, galactic, unique and very similar to how I’ve heard women describe their orgasms. Ever hear of anything like this? Is this some sort of Japanese underground kink thing?

Witty Hilarious Overzealous Amateur

The act you’re describing already has a name, WHOA, and an entry on Urban Dictionary: apple-polishing. Most men find the sensation of having the head of their cock worked so overwhelming that their bodies involuntarily recoil, which makes it difficult to polish someone’s apple if the “victim” isn’t restrained in some way. But it’s not painful—it’s like being tickled; indeed, the victim usually reacts with desperate laughter and gasping pleas for it to stop. (Don’t ask me how I know.) That all-over feeling of euphoria you experienced when your apple got polished was most likely a wave of endorphins—like a runner who pushes herself past her physical limits and experiences a full-body “runner’s high.” You were pushed past your physical limits, WHOA, and experienced the same sort of high.

I’m a 35-year-old straight guy. I recently started seeing an amazing 34-year-old girl. We love being around each other, but during sex, neither of us can come. It’s infuriating, to say the least. She has no trouble when she masturbates, and I know I have no trouble when I masturbate, so why can’t we come together?

Can’t Understand Matter

If you can come when you masturbate, and she can come when she masturbates, CUM, masturbate together, and you’ll be coming together. Mutual masturbation isn’t a sad consolation prize—mutual masturbation is sex, and it can be great sex. And the more often you come together through mutual masturbation, CUM, the likelier it gets that you’ll be able to come together while enjoying other things.

I have a weird and terrible problem. I’ve been seeing someone new, and I have just discovered that I get diarrhea every time I swallow his come—like debilitating pee poops an hour after, every time. I know the solution to the problem would be to stop swallowing, but I was wondering if you had ever heard of this before or knew why this was.

My Sad Asshole

I have heard of this before, MSA, and superstar Savage Love guest expert Dr. Debby Herbenick unpacked the cause for another reader a few years back: “Prostaglandins are substances made by the body and that the body is sensitive to. Semen contains prostaglandins—and prostaglandins can have a laxative effect on people. Related: If you’ve ever felt a little loosey-goosey right before getting your period, that’s also thanks to prostaglandins (which spike just before your period, because the prostaglandins get the uterine muscles to contract, which then helps to shed the lining of the uterus, resulting in a menstrual period). So why don’t more semen-swallowers find themselves running to the bathroom post-blowjob? I don’t know why most people aren’t extra-sensitive to prostaglandins, but fortunately, most of us aren’t, or there would probably be a lot less swallowing in the world.”

So, MSA, you’ll have to stop swallowing your boyfriend’s come, or only swallow when you have immediate access to a toilet in a restroom with a powerful fan.

Listen to the Savage Lovecast, this week with Erin Gibson: www.savagelovecast.com.

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Your last two columns and your last two podcasts were all about the pandemic. Everything everywhere is all about the pandemic right now. Can you give it a rest? For maybe a week? Could you answer some questions that aren’t about pandemic? Any fun kink questions come in this week? I could all use a break from the pandemic, Dan, and I’m not alone.

Columnist’s Oeuvre Vividly Instills Dread

Some kink questions did come in this week, COVID, and I’m happy to answer them. But the pandemic does come up in the second one, which you should feel free to skip.

I have a kink/fetish that’s been giving me a lot of anxiety over the last few years. I inadvertently discovered that I’m turned on by big bellies, weight gain and stuffing. It’s actually been there since I was a little kid, though I didn’t understand it until now. If it’s relevant, I’m a female, in my mid-20s, in a heterosexual monogamous relationship.

My problem is that I have a lot of trouble getting off without looking at pictures or at least thinking about my kink. I believe the common guidance is, “If it’s not hurting anyone, it’s fine.” But I feel super-gross and ashamed. Neither my partner nor myself is large, and we both value our health and fitness. I have absolutely no desire to participate in this activity with a real person. Every time I finish masturbating, I feel embarrassed and disgusted with myself. Some part of my brain obviously craves the kink, but the rest of my brain HATES it. I keep telling myself I will stop, but I have such a hard time getting off with other porn (or without porn) that I always return to it. I genuinely enjoy having vanilla sex with my partner. I feel turned on, and I have fun. But I’m often not I able to come. It sometimes makes him think he isn’t doing a good job, when in reality, he’s doing great, and I’m just frustrated with my body.

So I guess I’m wondering: Does continuing to watch belly porn reinforce the kink in my brain? Should I stop watching it and force myself to find other ways to come? Should I somehow find a way to embrace the kink instead?

Big Belly Woes

Six years ago, I roped Dr. Jesse Bering, author of Perv: The Sexual Deviant in All of Us, into answering a question from a dad who was worried about his teenage son’s sexual interest in Pokémon. (Yes, Pokémon.) Dad wanted to know if there was anything could done about his son’s “pathetic” sexual obsession. Bering explained that his kid’s kinks—that everyone’s kinks—are hardwired. “Nobody knows why some people are more prone to developing unusual patterns of attraction than others,” Bering said. “But whether it’s a penchant for Pokémon, feet, underwear or spiders, the best available evidence suggests that some people—mostly males—have a genetic predisposition for being ‘sexually imprinted’ during development.”

And once our erotic imaginations have seized on something—once we’ve imprinted on Pokémon characters or big bellies or wrestling singlets—there’s not much we can do about it. Before we’re adults—before we hit puberty—our kinks, as Bering put it, are “pretty much fixed, like it or not.”

For all we know, the teenage boy with the Pokémon fetish was completely comfortable with his own niche sexual interests. The dad wrote in, after all, not the kid. (If you’re a 23-year-old Pokémon fetishist, and your dad routinely invaded your privacy when you were a teenager and heaped shame upon you about your kinks, please write in with an update!) But I have heard from people who, like you, weren’t comfortable with their own kinks, BBW, and desperately wanted to know what could be done. Most sex scientists and researchers agree with Bering: There’s really nothing you can do, and masturbating to the porn that turns you on doesn’t “reinforce” your kinks. You can’t starve out your kinks by refusing to think (or wank) about them, BBW, and you can’t pray your kinks away any more than I could pray my gay away. Embracing your kinks and exploring them with other consenting adults—or if your kinks can’t be realized for ethical reasons, enjoying them through solo or partnered fantasy play only—is the only realistic option.

That said, some doctors have prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), aka anti-depressants, to people who were uncomfortable with their kinks. Those drugs don’t selectively eradicate kinks, BBW; they crater a person’s libido. Taking SSRIs would mean sacrificing the vanilla sex you enjoy with your partner on the same altar with the kink that stresses you out. I can’t imagine you want to go down either of these routes, BBW, which brings us back to embracing your kink and coming clean with your partner.

The risk you run telling a partner about your kink is no doubt at the forefront of your mind, BBW, because the consequences could be immediate, i.e., he might dump you. But not telling your partner about your kink—and leaving him to wonder why you can’t get off with him, but have no trouble getting off alone—isn’t risk-free, either. If he feels inadequate, if he feels like you’re hiding something from him, if he feels like he can’t satisfy you … he might dump you.

So share your kink with your boyfriend, BBW. Kinks should always be presented as crazy and endearing—and potentially really fun—as quirks, not as tragedies. You have a thing for big bellies, BBW; you don’t have leukemia. And you can explore your kinks without gaining weight or stuffing your partner until he does. A little big belly dirty talk could help you get off with your partner, BBW, and even the fittest person can push their tummy out and create the illusion of a rounded belly. Have fun!


My boyfriend and I live in San Francisco, where we’ve been sheltering in place. We are unfortunately unable to shelter together, which means that we cannot have physical contact, especially since he lives with a parent who’s at heightened risk. (It’s not an option for him to stay with me for the duration.) We’re as frustrated about having to abruptly end the physical aspect of our relationship as you might expect. We go for (distanced) walks during the week; we talk every day; and we jerk off in front of webcams together, but that only goes so far. I was thinking about giving him some of my worn panties for him to do whatever he wants with. My question is this: If I were to wash my hands and be cautious while putting together a pervy care package, is there much of a risk of spreading the virus around by doing this? I’m currently in good health, but I know that people can be infected but asymptomatic, and we’re being really careful to keep both of our households as safe as possible. Can the virus be spread via pussy juice?

Very Aromatic Gift

COVID-19 hasn’t been detected in vaginal fluids, VAG, so your pussy juice by itself doesn’t constitute a threat. But the virus, which is usually transmitted through the air (by people with the virus coughing, sneezing or even exhaling), can survive for hours or days on different kinds of surfaces, including clothes. The virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard, VAG, which mean it’s the package, not the panties, that are potentially a danger here.

If the last person who handled your care package—think the UPS guy who dropped it on his porch—had COVID-19, your boyfriend could wind up exposing himself by touching the box and then his face before washing his hands. But I think you should send him that package—but wear gloves while you pack it; don’t send it overnight (your scent will keep for a couple of days); and make sure your boyfriend immediately washes his hands after opening and discarding the package.

On the Lovecast, comedian Pete Dominick: www.savagelovecast.com.

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My husband and I got married in August 2019, and we were together for more than five years before getting married. I’m very happy and love him with all my heart. I want to have his kids and support his entrepreneurial efforts as he supports mine. We don’t fight; we just have some tiffs here and there. The kicker is that I have a tough time feeling him during sex, and he doesn’t last as long as I would like him to.

We’re adventurous enough to try different things, i.e. toys and different positions, but I find myself sexually unfulfilled. He also isn’t very willing/interested in going down on me; in fact, he has not once gone down on me. I’m also finding myself attracted to and fantasizing about other men. In addition to being honest with my husband, I don’t know what the solution is. I’m not opposed opening up a marriage, but I worry that I’m just being selfish and that it’s too soon to try or even discuss it at any length. I did bring up a crush I have on a co-worker, and my husband said, “There’s nothing wrong with having a snack.” What did he mean by that? Do you have any other insights or suggestions on what to do?

I hope you, your family and your friends are holding up OK during this pandemic. It’s a scary time, so I hope you’re all OK.

Married Not Dead

I shared your letter with Tristan Taormino, author of Opening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships. Through her books, lectures and podcasts (“Sex Out Loud Radio”), Taormino has helped countless couples navigate the transition from monogamy to non-monogamy. But before we dive into the specifics of your situation, MND, there’s something Taormino and I want to make clear to all.

“In this time of a global pandemic, thinking and talking about non-monogamy is all you can do right now,” said Taormino. “This goes for everyone: No new sex partners until public health experts say we can go back to standing closer than six feet apart. Even then, we’re going to have to proceed with caution.”

Listen up, people: the woman who literally wrote the book on open relationships says open and poly relationships are cancelled for the time being. “Yup, cancelled,” said Taormino, “unless every one of your partners lives with you.”

While COVID-19 isn’t classified as a sexually transmitted infection (STI), having sex with someone who has coronavirus would almost certainly result in transmission. And since people who get infected typically don’t show symptoms for up to two weeks, the fact that someone appears to be healthy doesn’t mean they are corona-free. Someone can look and feel great and be both infected and infectious. So for the time being, we should only be having sex with a sex partner we live with. If you have more than one sex partner, and you’re all staying in the same place, great! Poly isn’t cancelled for you and your partners. But we shouldn’t be hooking up with new partners in person or going to see established partners we don’t live with. That goes double for meeting up with non-cohabitating partners who have other partners and whose other partners have other partners of their own. But the good news is that sext messages and dirty video chats are both allowed and encouraged, kids, so we can get off online with new people, as well as established partners who live on the other side of town or the other side of the world. Hell, get the whole polycule together on Zoom—just don’t actually get together (or get under) anyone you don’t live with.

OK! With that out of the way, MND, we’re going to answer your question. But bear in mind that some of our advice—our advice about opening up your marriage—won’t be fully actionable until after COVID-19 is brought under control.

“I’m glad MND is being honest with her husband about her desires, but let’s take that further with even more specific talk about what’s missing in her sex life,” said Taormino. “In her letter, I heard: pussy-eating, intense-enough sensation from intercourse, and longer sex sessions. I’ll translate that: She’s missing pleasure, reciprocation and orgasms for her. She is NOT being selfish for wanting these things. They are pretty fundamental aspects of a sexual relationship, and she needs to address them with her husband first.”

Backing way the hell up: Assuming you knew about my column five years ago, MND, it’s telling you didn’t ask for my advice back when you realized your new boyfriend was never going to eat your pussy. (Spoiler: I would’ve told you to dump him.) Since you chose not to break up with your boyfriend over the lack cunnilingus back then, and you don’t want to divorce your husband over it now, MND, it would seem that going without oral—or at least going without at home—is the price of admission you’re willing to pay to be with this guy.

As for your other issues about your sex life with your husband—you don’t “feel him” during penis-in-vagina (PIV) intercourse, and it’s over too quickly—the right toys could certainly help. But if your husband ruled out penetration toys that were bigger than his cock, MND, or if you didn’t order any that were bigger than his cock to avoid hurting his feelings, you’re gonna have to broach the subject of buying some larger toys, MND—ones you can really feel. And since experimenting with new positions didn’t help your husband last longer, you should try alternating between toys and his cock during PIV, which will make both the sex (and the husband) last longer.

“If MND’s husband is really in this relationship, he should be open and willing to give most anything a try,” said Taormino. “MND really needs to see that he’s as interested in her pleasure and satisfaction as he is in his own. And if there’s something she wants to try or something that really turns her on and gets her off that her husband doesn’t know about, now is the time to share the juicy details.”

As for opening up the relationship, MND, I wouldn’t advise most people to initiate that convo at this moment. Because if the conversation goes badly—and they often do at first—that could mean sheltering in place with an angry person. But based on your husband’s reaction when you confessed having a crush on a co-worker, MND, I think you could risk discussing opening up while you’re locked down. Your husband didn’t say there was nothing wrong with fantasizing about a snack, MND; he said there’s nothing wrong with having a snack. Make no mistake: That’s not a green light to immediately outsource getting your pussy eaten. But his calm, matter-of-fact reaction when you confided in him about your crush is good sign.

But first things first: You need to work with your husband on improving your sex life at home, and you should have a convo about that—and a convo about ordering some new sex toys—before you make plans to open up the relationship and start getting your pussy eaten elsewhere.

“Exploring non-monogamy is one way to address sexual incompatibilities and expand our capacity for love and intimacy,” said Taormino. “But the stuff between the two of them needs to gets talked about first. Otherwise, you’re glossing over the issues with something new and shiny.”

Follow Tristan Taormino on Twitter @TristanTaormino.

I’ve been in love with a close friend for years. Social distancing has thrown major life “regrets” into high relief, and I would be crushed if something happened to him. We’ve both been distancing for two weeks, and neither of us have symptoms. Can I have him come over to hang out? What if we ended up making out or hooking up? He has housemates, and I don’t, so he’s around more people than I am, but everyone at his house has been distancing, too. I see so many questions about hooking up with randos, and that seems like a clear no-no. But what about hooking up with someone you know?

No Regrets

Also a no-no, NR. We’re not supposed to come within six feet of anyone we don’t live with, NR, which means you can’t invite this guy over to play cribbage and/or fuck you senseless. If you wanted to invite this guy over to stay, you could shack up and wait out the lockdown together. But you can’t invite him over just to play. Instead of inviting him over and hoping for something to happen, NR, you should give this guy a call and tell him how you feel. He might feel the same way and want to be your quarantine buddy. But if he doesn’t feel the same way, at least you’ll know. Rejections we can get over, NR, but regrets are for life.

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My question is on managing “gray area” intimacies during the pandemic. I have a lover/friend I’ve been hanging out with—fucking, drinking tea, going on hikes, eating ice cream, watching movies and other activities—for about nine months. He’s 36 and was married for 10 years, and due to that experience, he’s been a bit emotionally “boundaried,” but he’s still really sweet and a good communicator. I’m in grad school doing a double masters, so the small amount of time we’ve been spending together has worked well for me.

Here’s the issue: he’s also an ER doctor.

Do I keep seeing him during this pandemic? I just moved to the city where we both live for my grad program, and he’s my main source for connection, comfort and support here. Every time I see him, we both feel tremendously less stressed, and our connection feels emotionally healthy. I just know he is bound to be at a huge risk for exposure, and since he’s not a committed partner, and we don’t live together, I don’t know if he falls within or outside of my physical-distancing boundary.

It seems like the best thing to do from a logistical perspective is hole up with my cat and not see another soul in person until a vaccine is invented or something, but I don’t know when that will happen.

Physical Distancing Do’s And Don’ts

“This is really a matter of a personal risk/benefit calculation,” said Dr. Daniel Summers, a pediatrician who lives and works near Boston. “What PDDAD is willing to accept as a risk may be different from what someone else would.”

And there’s definitely a health benefit to getting together—we are social animals, and isolation is bad for us—but your lover is at high risk of infection. And when front-line health care providers get infected, they tend to get sicker than the average person who gets infected, according to CNN, which is something else you need to factor into your risk/benefit calculation. Additionally, does your boyfriend’s workplace—I’m going to call him your boyfriend for clarity’s sake—have the protective gear he needs to minimize his risk of exposure?

“We’re all doing our best to take as many preventive steps to lower our risk of being exposed,” said Dr. Summers, “but there’s still a maddeningly unacceptable shortage of personal protective equipment like masks, gowns and gloves nationwide. I hope he has sufficient access to these things. But is there a risk he could get exposed to the virus at work? Definitely.”

Dr. Summers lives with his husband and four children. In addition to the precautions he takes at work—where he may be seeing patients with coronavirus (he doesn’t know for sure, because tests still aren’t available)—Dr. Summers strips down to his underwear on his front porch of his home when he gets home from work. His clothes go straight into the washing machine; he goes straight into the shower.

“I’m still afraid of bringing it home,” said Dr. Summers. “But with four kids home from school, my husband’s sanity depends on my being present as much as I can. So, for me, staying away isn’t an option. That’s not the case for PDDAD. She has to decide whether the undefinable risk of exposure isn’t worth it. Or, alternatively, she can decide the connection she has with him is important enough to her own well-being that the risk is worth it. But only she can make that decision for herself.”

If you decide the risk of infection is too great—or if your boyfriend decides the risk of infecting you is too great—you can still be there for each other. You can Skype and Zoom; you can text and sext; you can leave groceries on his porch and wave to him from the sidewalk. But if you decide to keep connecting with each other in person, PDDAD, you should minimize the amount of time you spend moving through the city to get to each other’s places. And that means—emotional boundaries be damned—picking one of your apartments to hole up in together for the duration.

You can follow Dr. Summers on Twitter @WFKARS, and you can read him at Slate’s Outward.


I’m pro-sex workers, and I believe adults should do whatever they consent to, but I’m curious if that applies during the current pandemic. I know of a sex worker who’s still offering himself to clients, who are apparently still hiring him. (He regularly posts of his exploits on certain social-media sites.) Should the authorities be made aware of this?

Just Concerned

If the authorities want to start rounding up reckless idiots who are endangering others, JC, the beaches of Florida might be a good place to start. Or the Oval Office. And if your first impulse is to involve the authorities, then you aren’t “pro sex workers,” JC, because the authorities—particularly the police—are a danger to sex workers.

Instead of calling the cops, reach out to this guy on those social-media sites, and encourage him to see his clients virtually, i.e., instead of face-to-face (or face-to-whatever) meetings, he should go full cam-whore for the time being. If you want to want to help, JC, and not just police or shame, you should hire this guy to do an online session. (And everyone should bear in mind that sex workers are suffering right now, too, because most are being responsible and not seeing clients. Their incomes have plummeted to zero, and they aren’t eligible for unemployment benefits.)


I’m a queer poly woman, and I have a two-part question about sexting/Skype sex. I didn’t used to think twice about shooting off a nude or a nasty text in my 20s, and I’ve never have qualms about casual relations. But for me, there has always needed to be a baseline of friendship. After getting burned a bunch of times—especially by straight men (queers and other genders are generally way kinder)—I just wasn’t feeling it anymore.

Fast forward a few years; after doing a lot of work, I started feeling myself again. I started talking with a man I’d met through mutual friends and flirted with a little in the past. I was upfront with him and told him I would be down to get dirty again sometime, but needed to build up some form of friendship first. He enthusiastically agreed and started talking to me about this and that every other day or so. We were talking about meeting up person when the coronavirus lockdown happened—and now my libido has shot through the roof. We ended up exchanging photos and got off on FaceTime together. After that, crickets. I would send an innocuous question and get a two-word response.

I feel really disrespected and used, but at the same time, I can see how he doesn’t owe me anything. I was in a similar situation like this before, where a man told me that no matter what, he wanted our friendship to be a priority—and then ghosted me immediately after we slept together.

My questions: What can I do in the future to avoid this sort of situation? And, while we’re all in lockdown, do you have any advice on how to be hot over video when you’re generally a clumsy spaz?

Female Resents Insincere Efforts Necessitating Deceit

Unfortunately, FRIEND, there’s no surefire way to prevent people from lying to you about being friends in order to get into your pants—virtually or eventually—or to prevent them from changing their minds about being friends once they’ve gotten into your pants. (The former is more likely, but the latter does happen.) Your only options are relying on your bullshit detectors to weed out people you think might be playing you and getting better at shrugging off, blocking and forgetting the dishonest people who manage to get past your bullshit detectors.

As for tips about being hot on Zoom or FaceTime or Fox Nation or whatever: I’m afraid I can’t help you there, FRIEND, as I am the clumsiest spaz that ever spazzed. I hate having my photo taken, and if a room is dark enough for me to feel comfortable getting naked in it, it’s usually too dark for someone else to see me—whether they’re in the same room with me or sitting in front of a computer on the other side of the world. But someone who’s more at ease in front of the camera (and with whom I’m currently quarantined) tells me that slightly dimmed lighting is better than harsh lighting; leaving something on is hotter than taking it all off; and—if you want to maintain your anonymity—keeping your face and any identifying tattoos out of the shot is a good idea.

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DEAR READERS: I live in Seattle, the first U.S. epicenter of the novel coronavirus epidemic, with my family. A lot of my readers wrote this week to wish us well. We are fine—scared, but fine—washing our hands compulsively and staying close to home.

I’m going to keep churning out the column and recording my podcast, while being careful to maintain a safe social distance from the tech-savvy, at-risk youth. I’m hoping the column and podcast are welcome distractions.

Please take care of yourselves; take care of the people around you; and wash your damn hands.

I’m wondering if you know of a word that describes the fetish of getting off from talking dirty. I’ve searched a lot, and I can’t find a label for this kink or fetish. While googling around, I did learn some new terms, like “katoptronophilia” (being aroused by having sex in front of mirrors) and “pubephilia” (being aroused by pubic hair), but I can’t seem to find one that describes my kink.

Dirty Talker

I’m old enough to remember when people who needed to feel a strong emotional connection before they wanted to fuck someone got by without a word or a pride flag of their very own. They just said, “I’m someone who needs to feel a strong emotional connection before wanting to fuck someone.” But now they can say, “I’m a demisexual,” a five-syllable, vaguely scientific-sounding term that first popped up in an online forum in 2006. Unfortunately, when someone says, “I’m a demisexual,” the usual response is, “What’s that?” And then the demisexual has to say, “I’m someone who needs to feel a strong emotional connection before wanting to fuck someone.” So leading with “I’m a demisexual” seems like a waste of time to me. But it does extend the amount of time the speaker gets to talk about him/her/themselves … and who doesn’t love talking about themselves?

Anyway, DT, you’re someone who enjoys dirty talk. There isn’t a special term (or pride flag) for you that I could find—I did a little half-hearted googling myself—and I don’t think you need one. You can get by with: “I’m someone who enjoys dirty talk.”

My wife and I have been married for a little more than two years. We both have demanding jobs, but she admits to being a workaholic and spends almost every night on the couch answering e-mails and binge-watching Bravo. I’ve resorted to getting high most nights to cover up for the fact that I’m very unhappy. Despite being overworked, she’s started a side hustle selling skin-care products to her friends, most of whom she rarely sees in person.

Bottom line: I didn’t sign up for this. I’m beyond bored and want to travel and explore. But she refuses to give up the side hustle and dial back her work or her drinking. We both earn comfortable salaries, and we don’t need the extra income.

Would I be justified in leaving because of her newfound hobby?

Basically Over Redundant Enrichment

Side hustle or no, BORE, you aren’t happy, and that’s reason enough to leave. And while you won’t (or shouldn’t) be doing much traveling anytime soon, you can find a lawyer; search for a new apartment; and initiate divorce proceedings while your wife sits on the couch answering work e-mails and pushing skin-care products to her friends. I would typically encourage someone in your shoes to risk telling the truth before walking out—you’re unhappy; you’re bored; you don’t want to live like this anymore—but it sounds like your mind is made up. So use your time at home over the next couple of weeks to make your escape plan.

I’m a young white woman, and my last boyfriend, a black man, left me two weeks ago. Ever since, I have been masturbating only while thinking about black guys.

My question is: Do I have a “thing” for black guys now? I’ve accepted that our relationship is over, but it was really intense. I feel disgusting after I masturbate, because it feels gross and not respectful toward my ex somehow. What do you think?

Desperately Horny For Black Men

Masturbate about whatever the fuck turns you on, DHFBM, and if you’re worried someone would find your masturbatory fantasies disrespectful … don’t tell that person about your masturbatory fantasies.

I suppose it’s possible you have a “thing” for black guys now. (What’s that thing they say? Actually, let’s not say it.) Unless you are treating black guys as objects and not people, or you fetishize blackness in a way that makes black sex partners feel degraded (in unsexy, nonconsensual ways) or used (in ways they don’t wish to be used), don’t waste your time worrying about your fantasies. Worry about your actions.

I’m a 35-year-old woman in a long-term cohabitating relationship with a man. We opened our relationship about six months ago, and it’s going very well; we both have FWBs.

My primary partner and I are going to be getting engaged soon, and I’m wondering what my responsibility is to my FWB of five months. Do I make a special effort to tell him about the engagement—on the phone or in person, like I plan to tell family members and close friends? Or is it OK if he finds out via social media like other people I’ve known for only five months or less would? My getting engaged (or married) won’t prevent me from remaining his FWB.

Wanna Be Ethical

Golden rule this shit, WBE: If your FWB got engaged, would you want to find out via social media, or would you want him to tell you personally? I’m guessing you’d rather hear it from him.

You’ve known your FWB for only five months, it’s true, and other five-months-or-less friends don’t rate hearing it from you personally. But you aren’t fucking your other five-months-or-less friends. A little more consideration for your feelings is—or should be—one of the benefits.

I used to live in a college town. I’m a guy, and while there, I hooked up with a gorgeous guy. He had an amazing smile, a nice body, and the most perfect natural dick I’ve ever seen. (Can we please stop saying “uncut”? It’s so disgustingly plastic surgery-ish.) We hooked up a couple of times, and he was so much fun.

A couple of years later, in another town, he showed up out of the blue at my new job. It was awkward at first, but it got better over the couple of years we worked together. I always wanted to just sneak him into the bathroom and give him another blowjob.

He still lives in the same town, and I want to message him to see if he’s up for some more fun. We haven’t spoken in years—and last I heard, he was still not out. I want to message him, but I’m wondering whether there’s a time limit to reconnecting with someone. Fuck, man, he was so hot, and his natural, big, veiny dick was maybe the most perfect cock I’ve ever seen.

Big Ol’ Dick

Seeing as you haven’t spoken to this man in years, BOD, I’m going to assume you no longer work together. And seeing as you hooked up more than once back in that college town, I’m going to assume he liked your blowjobs. And seeing as there’s a worldwide pandemic on, and seeing as life is short, and seeing as dick is delicious, I’m going to give you the OK to send this guy a message.

Social media has made it possible for people to reach out to first loves, exes and old hookups. And so long as the reacher outer is respectful, has reason to believe their message won’t tear open old wounds, and instantly takes “no” for an answer (and no response means “no”), there’s nothing wrong with reaching out. And while social-distancing protocols will prevent you from sucking that gorgeous natural dick anytime soon, BOD, who doesn’t need something to look forward to right now?

On the Lovecast, love drugs! How therapeutic are they? Listen at savagelovecast.com.

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I’m a cis bi woman, and I mainly have sex with people with penises. I have a really gross problem—sorry. It’s been an issue for as long as I’ve been sexually active—but in the past few years, it seems to have gotten worse.

If I am being penetrated vaginally, especially if it’s vigorous (which I prefer), and I orgasm, sometimes I poop accidentally. If I try to clench up to keep this from happening, it doesn’t work, and I can’t orgasm. This used to happen once in a blue moon, only with particularly intense orgasms, but now it happens more frequently. One person I’ve been seeing really likes anal, and that makes the problem even worse.

To be clear: I have no desire for poop in my sex life. It’s gross; it’s embarrassing; and my partners do not enjoy it. Nor do I. I’ve tried going to the bathroom before sex, but I can never seem to fully empty out. I even went to a doctor to talk about it, but all I got was a big shrug and no useful suggestions. I’ve looked online and found discussions of this happening to other people and them being understandably horrified, but nobody mentions it being a regular occurrence.

This really sucks! Do you have any suggestions—other than “give up sex completely,” which I would prefer not to do?

Necessary Objective: Soothe Her Intestinal Tract

“I’ve absolutely heard of this before, and as NOSHIT already knows from internet searches, she’s not alone and needs help,” said Dr. Debby Herbenick. “And a ‘big shrug’ doesn’t sound like a helpful response from a physician who you’re asking for help in figuring out a complicated and extremely under-researched and therefore tricky sexual issue.”

Dr. Herbenick is a professor at the Indiana University School of Public Health and author of Because It Feels Good: A Woman’s Guide to Sexual Pleasure and Satisfaction and numerous other books. What you’re going to need, according to Dr. Herbenick, is a doctor who’s actually prepared to help you. So that awkward conversation you had with your last doctor? A conversation you no doubt dreaded having? You’re going to need to have that conversation again, NOSHIT, maybe more than once, with other doctors. I know, I know: Talking with your doctor about a sexual issue—particularly a messy one—is difficult. And when we finally work up the nerve to speak with a doctor about something like this, and that doctor isn’t helpful, our understandable desire to avoid having that conversation ever again can lead us to conclude that talking to doctors is a waste of time. But it isn’t, so long as you’re talking to the right doctor.

“The letter writer should ask her health-care provider for a referral to an urogynecologist,” said Dr. Herbenick, “especially one who likes to get to the bottom (no pun intended) of challenging cases.”

If this happens to you at other times—if you poop yourself when you fart or sneeze—be sure to share that information with the specialist.

“There are lots of tests that health-care providers can use to examine her rectal function,” said Dr. Herbenick. “These tests can include a digital rectal exam, a sigmoidoscopy (insertion of a tiny tube with a camera to look for issues such as inflammation), an X-ray, an anal ultrasound, a colonoscopy or other tests. In other words, there are things other than a big and completely useless shrug that can be done. And depending on what they find, they may suggest biofeedback, surgery, physical therapy/pelvic-floor exercises, supplements and so on.”

But with all that said, NOSHIT, doctors aren’t all-powerful, and some problems can only be managed and not solved.

“The fact is, our bodies don’t last forever in the ways we want them to,” said Dr. Herbenick. “And some research does point toward more frequent anal intercourse being associated with fecal incontinence.” (Aging, childbirth and hormone-replacement therapy are very strongly associated with fecal incontinence.) Only a small percentage of women who regularly engaged in anal intercourse reported higher levels of fecal incontinence, NOSHIT, so if this isn’t a problem for you generally—if this is only a problem during sex due to some tragically star-crossed neural wiring—you might want to steal a move from the squeaky-clean gay bottoms out there: Instead of just “going to the bathroom” before sex and hoping you’re empty, treat yourself to an anal douche to make sure you’re empty. (Alexander Cheves wrote a great guide for receptive anal intercourse, “17 Tips for Happier, Healthier Bottoming,” for the Advocate. Google it.)

“But finding a health-care provider who’s willing to listen to what’s important to her in her sex life is the first step,” said Dr. Herbenick. “A sex-positive health-care provider—probably a urogynecologist or a proctologist—who’s willing to hear her out can help her figure out some good ways forward. It’s about listening to what quality of life means to her. That seems to include an active, pleasurable sex life involving vaginal and/or anal sex with orgasm, and without pooping, or at least not nearly so often.”

Follow Dr. Herbenick on Twitter @DebbyHerbenick.


I’m a 32-year-old woman married to a 45-year-old man. We’ve been together for 10 years. At the beginning of our relationship, I told him smoking was a deal-breaker for me, because he was a former smoker. Well, the asshole started smoking again this year. I’m pissed about this, and it has affected my desire for him. This is complicated further by the fact that for most of our relationship, we’ve had very mismatched libidos, with mine being much higher. He has always said that I could get my needs met elsewhere, as sex just wasn’t that important to him. Well, last year, I started exploring extramarital relationships, and now I have a boyfriend that I’m eager to fuck. Can you guess who is now interested in fucking me? My husband, Mr. Sex Isn’t Important. Turns out, he’s very into fucking me after I’ve fucked another dude. But I only want so much sex, and I don’t want to fuck a smoker. I feel obligated to have sex with my husband, though. My question is, am I? He didn’t feel obligated to have sex with me more than once a month for nine years, which made me feel shitty and undesirable. (Also, we have kids. Hence the marriage and why I’m not going to leave.)

Seriously Hate Ash Mouth

You aren’t obligated to have sex with your husband—you aren’t obligated to have sex with anyone, ever. But I assume you don’t want to be left any more than you want to leave, SHAM. And if you refuse to fuck your husband because he broke the deal you made a decade ago—and because you’re pissed about nine years of sexual neglect (legit grounds)—he might decide to leave you. So while you don’t have to fuck this ash-hole, you might want to fuck this ash-hole. But until he quits smoking, you could reasonably refuse to kiss him or sleep in the same room with him. (Smokers don’t realize how bad it smells—how bad they smell—and just how thoroughly they can stink up a room, even one they never light up in.)

One follow-up question: Did your husband always know this about himself—did he know he was turned on by the thought of you being with other dudes—or did he realize it only after you started fucking this other dude? If he knew it all along, and his encouragement to get your “needs met elsewhere” was a dishonest and manipulative attempt to force his kink on you, SHAM, you have even more right to be pissed. But if he realized this turned him on only after you started fucking other dudes—if he was as surprised as you were both surprised and annoyed by it—you might want to forgive him.

On the Lovecast, let’s think about same-sex animal behavior: savagelovecast.com.

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I’m a 31-year-old cis bisexual woman. I’m hetero-romantic and in a monogamish relationship with a man. We play with other people together. I’ve never liked giving blowjobs, because I was taught that girls who give blowjobs are “sluts.” Phrases that are meant to be insulting, like, “You suck,” “Suck it,” “Go suck a dick,” etc. created a strong association in my mind between blowjobs and men degrading women. (Men take what they want, and women get used and called sluts.) As such, I never sucked much dick—and if I did, it was only briefly and never to completion. I also find spit and come kind of gross. Even when I get really wet during sex, it’s a bit of a turnoff, and I hate that it makes me feel gross, and I wish I could change my thinking around it.

Early in our relationship, my husband noticed the lack of blowjobs and confronted me, saying they were really important to him. At first, I felt a little insecure about being inadequate in this area, but then I decided to do some research, because I honestly thought it wasn’t just me, and most women don’t like giving blowjobs. (Because how could they? It’s so demeaning!) But I learned lots of my female friends enjoy giving blowjobs—they like being in control, giving a partner pleasure, etc.—so I googled ways to start liking blowjobs—and I’ve started to get into them! It’s great! Except I still don’t like when he comes in my mouth or if a blowjob gets super spitty. But my husband loves sloppy blowjobs; he says the lubrication feels good, and he enjoys the “dirtiness” of it. If I know he’s getting close to coming, or if it gets super wet and I have spit all over my face, my gag reflex activates, and it’s hard to continue.

I feel like I’m at an impasse. I want to give him the blowjobs he wants, but I don’t know how to get around (or hopefully start enjoying!) the super-sloppy-through-to-completion blowjobs he likes. Do you have any advice?

Sloppy Oral Always Keeps Erections Drenched

You play with other people together, SOAKED, but have you tried observing—by which I mean actively observing, by which I mean actually participating—while your husband gets a sloppy blowjob from someone who really enjoys giving them? If someone else was blowing your husband while you made out with him or sat on his face or played with his tits or whatever might enhance the experience for him … and you watched another woman choke that dick down … you might come to appreciate what’s in it for the person giving the sloppy blowjob.

Most people who were taught that girls who give blowjobs are sluts were also taught that open relationships are wrong, and women who have sex with other women are going to hell. You got over what you were taught about monogamish relationships and being bisexual years ago, SOAKED, and recently got over what you were taught about women who enjoy sucking cock. While some people have physical limitations they can’t overcome—some gag reflexes are unconquerable—watching someone enjoy something you don’t can make you want to experience it yourself.

But even if your observations don’t trigger a desire to get down there and get sloppy and swallow his load yourself, your husband would be getting the kind of blowjobs he enjoys most, and you would be an intrinsic part of them. If you set up the date, you’d be making them happen, even if you weren’t doing them. And if you were into the scenario and/or the other woman—if the whole thing got you off, not just off the hook—then there would be something in it for you, too.

And take it from me, SOAKED: To be kissed with both passion and gratitude by, say, a husband (ahem) who’s really enjoying something someone else is doing for/to him—whether or not that something is something you also enjoy doing for/to him from time to time—is really fucking hot. So even if you never come around—even if sloppy blowjobs are something you have to outsource permanently—you and your husband can enjoy years of sloppy blowjobs together, with the assistance of a series of very special (and very slutty) guest stars. And you can always get those blowjobs started—the non-sloppy, non-spitty initial phase—before passing the baton off to your guest star.


Married 40-year-old gay guy here. I hate beards—the look, the feel, the smell—and I miss the good old days when the only beards gay dudes had were metaphorical.

When I got back from a long business trip, my hot, sexy, previously smooth husband of many years was sporting a beard. Unsurprisingly, I hate it and find it to be a complete turnoff. However, he says this is controlling behavior on my part—it’s his body and his choice—and he’s hurt that I’m rejecting him. He also says I’ll get used to it, and he doesn’t plan to keep it forever. I agree that it’s his body and his choice, but I think he should still take me into consideration, and that it’s actually him who’s rejecting me, by choosing the beard over me.

What’s your take?

Spouse’s Hairiness Averts Virile Erection

I’m with you, SHAVE, but I’m also with him. It is his body, and growing a beard is something he can choose to do with the face section of his body. But that my body/my choice stuff cuts both ways: Your body is yours, and what you do with your body is your choice. And you can choose not to press your body against his—or press your face against his—while he’s got a beard. If long business trips are a regular part of your life, maybe he could grow his beard out in your absence and shave when you get home. (Full disclosure: I have a pronounced anti-beard bias, which means I’m not exactly impartial.)


I’m a 30-year-old queer cis woman and a late bloomer. My first relationship—with a hetero cis man—began when I was 28. He was my first sexual partner. I fell in love hard, but he broke up with me after almost two years. Months later, I know I’m not ready to fall in love again, but I have a high sex drive. I masturbate frequently, but when I think about playful/romantic sex, the only memories I have are with the ex, which makes me sad. So I watch rough porn, which keeps me from thinking about the ex. But watching bondage videos alone isn’t the sex life I want.

Should I Tinder or Lex up some rough casual sex? Get drunk and get some more memories in the mix? (I don’t think I could get out of my head enough to do this sober.) Assuming I minimize the risks of pregnancy and STIs and partners who are bad at consent, what’s the risk of going for it? How does it compare to the risk of getting stuck in this nowhere land and never finding a new love/sex buddy? Or maybe I need to get drunk and jerk off alone without the porn and just feel all my feelings and avoid any risk of crying on some poor stranger?

I Need A Plan Today

Do it all, INAPT. Masturbate to kink porn and feel dirty; masturbate to your memories and feel sad; and put yourself out there on Tinder and Lex and see if there isn’t someone who intrigues you. But stop telling yourself you can’t find romance with a partner you first met up with for rough sex. I know lots of people who first met up with someone for rough sex, clicked on a deeper level, started dating, and have since enjoyed years of sex that’s both rough and loving.

Finally, booze has a way of intensifying feelings of sadness—so if you don’t want to wind up sobbing on the shoulder of some poor stranger, don’t get drunk before that hookup.

On the Lovecast, all things weed with Lester Black: savagelovecast.com.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; @fakedansavage on Twitter.

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I’m 20, straight, male, fit and active. I masturbated prone—flat on my stomach—for years. I’ve now changed to a more-traditional position (on my back or sitting upright), and I’m using my hand rather than grinding against a mattress. I can easily orgasm when I masturbate. I’ve had sex four times in my life, and I’m worried because I wasn’t able to orgasm by someone else’s hand, through oral, or during penetration. I felt more sensation with oral or by hand than I did during intercourse, but I wasn’t able to get off.

This is extremely worrying, and I am increasingly depressed. Am I broken? Is my sex life ruined?

Boy Reeling Over Kaput Equipment

You’re not broken, BROKE, and your partnered sex life, which has barely begun, isn’t ruined. Even if you’re never able to come by someone else’s hand, mouth, twat or ass—and that’s the worst-case scenario here—you can still have a rewarding and pleasurable sex life.

In the short run, BROKE, you need to be honest with your sex partners about the way your cock currently works. Let them know you’re going to be mixing some manual self-stimulation in with the vaginal/oral/anal penetration. In other words, at some point, you’re going to pull out of whatever you’re in; you’re going to jerk it until you reach the point of “orgasmic inevitability” (OI), aka that split second between the start of orgasmic contractions and the good stuff spurting out; and then you’re going to put it back in. Since most women need to mix direct clitoral stimulation with penetration (or use direct stimulation in place of penetration) in order to get off—before, during, after, or instead of intercourse—your honesty about what you actually need to get off will signal to your female partners that they can be honest with you about what they actually need to get off.

Backing way the hell up: The way you used to masturbate—prone—is likely the reason you’re having difficulty climaxing now. But lots of men who masturbated in more “traditional positions”—e.g., on their backs, sitting up, standing up, etc.—have trouble transitioning to partnered sex from solo sex. The inside of a mouth, vagina or butt doesn’t feel like your own hand (or a long-suffering mattress, in your case), and even someone else’s hand doesn’t feel the same as your own. While the excitement of partnered sex helps most guys get over the hump, for many men, it takes time and a little experimentation for their cocks to adapt. But men who engaged in “atypical masturbatory behaviors” as boys—and prone masturbation/humping a mattress counts—frequently have a harder transition to partnered sex.

There’s a name for what you’re experiencing: delayed ejaculation. And while delayed ejaculation can be frustrating, the opposite problem—premature ejaculation—is more frustrating and harder to work around. (I get a lot more letters from guys in despair because they come too quickly and too easily than I do from guys like you, BROKE, who take too long.) Really, when you look at it from a different angle, your problem—being able to last forever—is really kind of a superpower. Because let’s say you fuck some lucky woman for ages, and she gets off again and again because someone—you, her, a third—is stimulating her clit at the same time. Once she’s satisfied (or shortly before she’s satisfied), BROKE, you can pull out, jack yourself to OI, then put your cock back inside her and blow that load or take the condom off and blow your load—with her consent, of course—all over her ass or tits or stomach or Toyota Corolla or whatever.

But for your partner to feel like this is your superpower, and she totally lucked out when she met you, BROKE, you can’t leave her in the dark about the way your dick works. If you don’t let your partner know you need to stroke yourself a little right before you come, she’s likely to interpret your staying power (your superpower) as a sign you aren’t attracted to her.

Now here’s how you might be able to fix this in the long run, BROKE: When you’re masturbating, you should … well, you should do what you’re doing. Masturbate while sitting up or lying on your back; use your hand and a little lube, but do it with a much lighter touch/grip; and maybe invest in a quality (read: silicone) masturbation sleeve. Don’t use the death grip—don’t squeeze the life out of your dick—as that will make things worse. And while cutting back on porn and using your imagination instead is fine, the real goal is to re-train your cock to respond to subtler sensations. Which brings us to the hardest part: If you can’t come after masturbating for 10, 20 or 30 minutes—using that light touch/grip, a little lube, and maybe that sleeve—you don’t get to come. No flipping over and humping the mattress after half an hour, and no using a firmer grip. You put your dick away, and go to bed or work or school. Because this is about focusing on pleasurable sensations, not blowing your load, and you want to let the pressure build in your balls between sessions.

Stick to these rules when you’re on your own for at least six months. If your dick is able to adapt, it will, and then you can take your more sensitive dick into partnered sex with more confidence. But if after six months, you’re still not able to come using a lighter touch or a masturbation sleeve, you may have to accept that this—your need to get yourself to the point of OI during partnered sex—is the way your dick works. Just as some women need to use a vibrator in order to come, and that doesn’t mean they’re broken, some men—after giving and receiving a lot of pleasurable fucking—need to pull out, jack to the point of OI, and then plunge back in for the last few victory pumps. It doesn’t mean they’re broken; it doesn’t mean their dicks are broken; and it certainly doesn’t mean their sex lives are over. As sexual superpowers go, BROKE, it’s a pretty decent one to have.

Finally: I just re-read a paper on traumatic masturbatory syndrome (TMS) that was published in the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy back in 1998—which I think was before you were born (math is hard)—and it identified prone masturbation as the primary cause of delayed ejaculation. To prevent TMS, delayed ejaculation, and other forms of erectile dysfunction that prone masturbation can lead to, the authors recommended “masturbatory instruction in the home, classroom or pediatric clinical setting.” If their advice had been taken—if boys were advised, as one aspect of a comprehensive sex-education program, to avoid humping mattresses or placing their penises between mattresses and box springs—far fewer young men would have the problem you’re having now.


I’ve been seeing a guy for two years. It was a FWB situation from the start, because he already had a girlfriend. I adore him; we quickly broke the rules (L-word spoken on both sides); but the B part has dwindled to nothing. We haven’t had PIV sex since September, and he just added a second FWB to the mix.

He swears he’s attracted to me and says we aren’t having sex—with the exception of me blowing him from time to time—because he’s older. But I know for a fact the other two women are getting some. He says he’s attracted to me—so why doesn’t he want sex? How do I make him see how much I need him without issuing ultimatums?

Scared But Horny

Your FWB might come through with a little PIV if you issued that ultimatum, SBH, but it sure doesn’t sound like he’s going to fuck you short of one. You might be able to get this guy to quite literally throw you a bone, but I think your time would be better spent finding a new FWB.

On the Lovecast, the TRUTH about women’s libidos: savagelovecast.com.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; @fakedansavage on Twitter.

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