Dating, Gender, Sex

I Take And I Leave

One of my latest (and longest lasting) obsessions in the last few months is Dessa, a female… musician. I’m not going to put her into a category. She sort of raps, she sort of sings, she sort of is amazing and reads my soul.

She has lines in her songs that make me think about them for days like

My mother says I’ve loved too many men But I took and left something in every single bed

Which makes me reexamine the concept of the slut.

Because the language is so active. I took and left something. I acted, I was not acted upon.

Rapgenuis.com says of the lyric:

Dessa has been with a lot of guys and it is implied that she’s slept with them. But she’s justifying this by saying that it was fair. She gave and got something out of it. Sometimes society makes it seem like it’s okay for men to sleep with tons of women, but if a woman gets with tons of guys she’s automatically a slut. Dessa’s like “Uh-uh. It was a fair trade. We’re both equally responsible and I make my own decisions.”

That’s what Dessa does to me, with a single line she can leave me thinking for weeks about the way “slut” implies passivity and I’d much rather be sleeping around in Dessa’s definition, one where I DO. Actively.

Consent, Intimacy, Sex

“Come On”

There is very little that you can say to me in bed that will offend me more than “Come on.” It’s an insult to my intelligence, my desires, my experience, and the art of debate.

Let’s say you ask me to engage in an activity. Lets say that activity is (oh god, something random) kissing my fingers. You really want to kiss my fingers and for whatever reason I don’t want you to. It goes a bit like this:

We’ve been kissing and you put my finger up to your mouth and I realize what you’re going to do and pull away. An act of Non-Consent.

So you say “I really want to kiss your fingers.” Negotiations initiated.

I don’t want you to kiss my fingers so I say, “No, I don’t want that.”

And you say, “Come on.”

And I get up and walk out the door.

Here are a list of things that are wrong with “Come on.”

  1. It tells me that your entire argument is “But I want it.” I thought I was in bed with an adult, not a toddler. I guessed that you wanted it when you asked for it, but thanks for restating the same information in a whiny tone.
  2. You think that your wanting of the thing is more important than my not wanting of the thing. That might be the most selfish and scary part of all.
  3. It tells me you’re bad at discussing sex, and probably sensitive subjects in general, lowering my general opinion of you.
  4. It forms no argument. You’re giving me no new information so I have nothing to argue with. Phrases that would be more effective include but are not limited to:
    • “It’s the only thing that gets me off.”
    • “You just look so beautiful when you do it.”
    • “I saw it in a movie once and have always wanted to try it.”
    • “I just love the dynamic.”
    • “How about a hand massage with a few kisses on your palm?”
    • “Too rough or too gentle?”
    • “Sorry, I’ve actually never done that before but your hands are just so perfect I suddenly wanted to.”
    • “Would you be more comfortable if I did it first?”
    • “Can I kiss my own fingers?”
    • “Can you kiss your fingers in front of me?”

Warning: This can turn into coercion if you’re not careful so tread lightly and listen to your partners rejections because coercion does not lead to consent.

These are all the beginnings of a negotiation over the course of which one of us may actually change our mind. You may say “I’ve never wanted to kiss someone’s fingers before but yours just smell so amazing” and I may say “Oh, that’s because I just washed the dishes. I didn’t want you to kiss them because I thought they might still have soap on them and get you sick. I could wash them real fast.” Voila! We solved it! You get to kiss my fingers you lucky son of a gun!

There’s one phrase that is the antithesis to the dreaded “Come on,” The sentence that symbolizes everything that “Come on” isn’t. Unsurprisingly it’s a question. When I was in high school a guy asked me to do something, I said “no,” and he said, “No pressure, but can I ask why?”

No one had ever asked me that before. Lying there naked together we talked about it. It might have been a little awkward at first trying to put it into words but hearing him talk about what he thought was sexy about it… was sexy. And we came up with a compromise that made both of us happy and then I surprised myself by seeing the thing he thought was so sexy in it and giving just a little more than what we had settled on.

“Come on” shuts down all discourse and shows your partner that you don’t have any respect for their needs. If you think you’re going to convince me to do something using the words “Come on” then you’ve got another thing coming and it won’t be either of us.

“What I’ve come to learn is that the world is never saved in grand messianic gestures, but in the simple accumulation of gentle, soft, almost invisible acts of compassion.”
– Chris Abani (via splitterherzen) [x]

Sex

There Should Be A Class Or Something.

We’re so bad at sex and then we wonder why women aren’t like, really aggressive about sex. We think it’s cause they don’t have as much desire as we do. That’s how stupid men are, that we think ‘they’re just weird, women are like fucked up in the head cause they don’t wanna just fuck all the time. If I was a women, I’d just fuck everybody. Why don’t they wanna fuck all the time? I do’. Of course you do, cause when you fuck, you get to fuck a woman! When she fucks, she has to fuck a guy! Wildly different experiences. For a man, 100% of the time, it’s the greatest thing that ever happened in his entire life. For a woman, about 40% of the time, when she’s being fucked by a guy, she’s thinking ‘I’ll get over this in a week. It’s not the worst thing. I’m not gonna cry this time’

Another thing that proves how bad men are at sex is that after sex, you’re looking at two very different people. The man just wants to lay there, be cool and the woman wants to cuddle…’Why is she so NEEDY?’ She’s not needy you idiot, she’s horny, because you did nothing for her. YOU DID ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. HER PUSSY IS ON FIRE BECAUSE IT’S GONE UNFUCKED COMPLETELY. Of course you’re fine, you climbed on and went “KFHGSKG” and rolled off. And she’s on you because she’s like ‘WH-at SOMETHING ELSE HAS TO HAPPEN, THIS IS BULLSHIT!!” If you fuck a woman well, she will LEAVE YOU ALONE. ‘Thanks a lot buddy, zzzzz’

– Oh, Louis CK, advocate for the female orgasm. (via overwehlming)

Bodies, Confidence, Self-Care, Sex

What Gets You Through

Last month I spent some time with a guy I have a bit of history with and he basically told me that while I was very attractive, he likes girls who like to wax or shave, often. And a most miraculous thing happened. I felt nothing. Or, more accurately, I thought, “For you I’m supposed to put in that much effort? Fat chance.”

I didn’t think, “THIS IS SO INCREDIBLY EMBARRASSING!” which is exactly what High School Me would have thought before burrowing under the covers, putting on all her clothes plus a coat and hiding in the bathroom and crying.

I didn’t even think “I can do better” which is what One-Year-Ago Me would have thought.

This interaction was exactly what I had spent my entire post-pubescent life fearing and when it finally happened I felt a strange mix of apathy and self-confidence.

This is the way I like my body and if it isn’t the way you like it then I’m not gonna change it, but you can go find another one. Free country. No judgement. No harm, no foul.

Then I asked him if I could write about this and he said he’d be surprised if I didn’t. Ah, friendship.

Also, this. I know that people are allowed to have preferences about whatever they want. Just ask all the guys I didn’t date because they had short haircuts or perfect tiny noses or a habit of breathing on me, however, health, it’s important.

Sometimes it’s the strangest things that make you get over huge hurdles, or realize that you’re there already.

Gender, Sex

I’m The Casanova

The more I date and talk with and befriend men the more I laugh at the stereotype that all men just want sex.

I. Making a generalization about an entire group of people based on their Gender. Always gross.

II. In many of my exchanges with men, it is the other way around and they’re seeking a more romantic connection than I am. Guys I’m friends with, guys who flirt with me in bars, in general guys I talk to, if you listen hard enough, want a girl they can come home to.

III. It would appear the research agrees with me.

IV. I’ve been touched so gently by men who I could toss to the floor. I wouldn’t of course (unless they asked) because cruelty for the sake of cruelty isn’t cool. But living life looking out through the window of my own self I always thought that if I got to make the social constructs based on my own feelings then the roles would be reversed. That women would be these flighty sex crazed maniacs and men would be the ones trying to get us to pin us down, like butterflies who would rather be in the sun flitting about.

Then again my parents had a very particular relationship.

Here’s the question I spend a lot of time thinking about:

What do men gain by propagating the myth that all they want is sex when really the odds aren’t incredibly high?

In any given year, as many as twenty percent of young men – about one guy in five – might be living a player lifestyle. But only about five percent, or one guy in twenty, does this for three straight years. [x]

Or maybe I shouldn’t be projecting my experience onto women in general and it’s just that on the inside those odds would be true of all people regardless of gender if we let ourselves do what we wanted to do.

Art, Bodies, Media, Sex

Oh Joy, Sex Toy!

I’m gonna review a review! Or a reviewer! Something like that.

Let’s all get acquainted with

I heard about Oh Joy from XoJane, where I hear about almost everything cool lately. I’m severely unhip, you see.

And so is Oh Joy! In the best possible way.

Oh Joy manages to pack into one page all the information it seems you’ll need about whatever Erika Moen wants to talk about that day. Whether that is her Hitachi Magic Wand, A Fleshlightthe birth control implant, or a strap on harness.

And I only mention those specific ones because they’re the first few I’ve read.

There are a few really cool things I like about Oh Joy.

First the variety of things Erika talks about. Wanna talk about reusable menstrual cups, sure, couples sex toys, no problem, rope bondage, lets give it a go. There is something for everyone. And that’s just how sexual expression in media should be.

Second, it’s not always her voice. There are things that she can’t review with her vagina alone and she has a husband and neighbors and friends for that. Erika Moen seems to live in a sex positive bubble where she’s ‘out’ about her blog to everyone and when she’s sick she can call up a friend to cover for her and put something about themselves on the internet for her. And I’m really jealous of this.

Third, the masturbateers. Erika, instead of drawing herself getting down, (right, did I mention this is a comic so everything reviewed is reviewed visually?) draws this beautifully varied cast of characters. I love a lot of things about this. One, the bodies come in all shapes and sizes just like real bodies do. Two, I like imagining that she imagines herself in a variety of bodies when she’s reviewing things, like she’s Mystique from X-Men and just shifts through. Sometimes I kinda do that and I like to imagine other people do too.

Basically I’m really excited to read the rest of OhJoySexToy. And to one day meet Erika Moen and live in the magical sex positivity bubble with her. Just think of the fun we’ll have!

 

Intimacy, Relationships, Sex

Why I Won’t Stop Loving The Yankee

This is sort of embarrassing. So there’s this sex thing that I’ve always been turned on by but also always been embarrassed of. And I’ve always found that the things people want you to do to them become obvious in the end as they try to get you to do it without having to say it. Like how a cat pets your palm with the back of her head.

One night I was being such cat and the Yankee kind of called me out on it. Or rather dared me to do it. And immediately I felt shame. The shame you feel the first time naming a turn on. Immediately followed by the shame of having been so obvious about it that he could guess it. But then the turning on kicked in and I was a goner.

And afterwards when we were drinking water and making the bed he said “hey, did you notice how wet you got when I said that word?” And I was incredibly mortified until he said how much he liked making me so happy and we giggled about it and went to sleep.

And that is why I can’t stop loving the Yankee even though I don’t want to be with him anymore.

When I first started seeing the Yankee I hesitated to use the word relationship but it was probably pretty soon after that night when I started admitting that it was indeed some variation on a normal relationship. He heard me, my words and my body, because he was listening. He noticed the small things that made me who I am and he respected and cared about and even tried to cater to them. I couldn’t ask for more care and consideration.

And so now I understand how someone can feel so bad, so wrong, so selfish, so unjustified in wanting to leave a partner. Even when they know it’s the right thing to do anyway.

Media, Sex

Porn As Junk Food

A friend sent me this video the other day.

In many ways, a lot of porn is comparable to junk food. It’s a highly distilled and concentrated formulation that is engineered to tap into some of our most basic urges. As a culture, we’re really good at taking something that’s good for us or fun and distilling it to the point of toxicity. In the case of food, it’s salt, sugar, and fat. In the case of porn, it’s formulaic, unrealistic sex that follows predictable conventions and neglects genuine pleasure. In both cases, real diversity and variety is removed and instead, superficial differences are promoted as innovations. When it comes down to it, what’s the difference between Cheetos, Doritos, or Fritos? They’re all corn products, with salt, fat, and variations in flavoring additives. Their purpose isn’t to nourish- their purpose is to get people to buy their products so the producers can get as much money as possible. [x]

We just have to make sure not to base our ideas of what sex should be like on what porn is like. We don’t cook potatoes so they taste like McDonalds, why would we do it with sex?

Bodies, Consent, Feelings, Sex

When to Run

I was just reading an article about protesting. About when to run and when not to run. The ‘Not to run’ section was logical. Consider that you’re leaving people behind, giving up power and potentially causing a panic. Trampling is a real danger.

The ‘when to run’ section was harder for me.

When to run

  1. If it’s a tactical retreat, made consciously and free of panic. Develop a strategy ahead of time to fall back on. Otherwise, you’re letting the police set the terms.
  2. If you’re past your comfort level. This will obviously be true for most people fleeing police, but remember that your comfort level isn’t necessarily a static thing – if you want to, change it.
  3. If your energy is gone. Understand your limits, and leave with the peace of mind of knowing you have reached yours for the day, and have accomplished what you can. [x]

In the last few years I’ve put more energy into figuring out and listening to when I reach my limits. Starting to have and enjoy sex has been very helpful in this exploration. I had to start listening to my body and both hearing and expressing when I was past my comfort level or when my energy was gone.

It’s hard to convince me that my mere comfort or energy level is enough of a reason to stop something that has benefits for someone else. It takes time and practice and I’m not fully there yet.

But at least now I know that knowing how and when to tap out is a skill, not a weakness. One that is worth practicing and exploring and messing up and trying again.