Splitting Headaches

I don’t know how to act when the waiter brings us a check and I’m out on a date with a feminist.

Is it misogynist for me to pay the bill because I’m adhering to archaic ideas of controlling women economically?

Is it misogynist for me to expect her to pay in because that’s not acknowledging the financial privilege I have over her?

I mean, the line is really blurry!

The modern feminist man treads on eggshells for a lot of obvious reasons, we can usually cherry-pick what archaic practice we should keep and which we need to move past.  I’ll hold the door open for a lady, but I don’t think that somehow justifies the wage gap between men and women.  Drawing that line is sometimes difficult, though.

How do we resolve the conflicts that exist between being the egalitarian bachelors of the new age and being the chivalrous gentlemen of old?  How do we advance from being the men we’ve been told since childhood that women want into becoming the modern men that women deserve?  Can we be both?

The clearest example of this is dealing with the bill at the end of a date.  As the existing narrative plays out, the man pounces on the check as soon as it arrives, settling the debt with no mention of recompense.  This standard has certainly met with a widespread level of acceptance; I’ve even had die-hard, Chesler-reading feminists suddenly pull out their phone and pretend they don’t see the bill when it gets brought to the table.  At the same time, some respond negatively and view this as a throwback to a time when men would financially support women in exchange for treating them as second class citizens.  I have zero ability to tell which response my reaching for the bill with elicit, though!

I’ve heard a few coping techniques for this transitional period we’re in on our way towards equality, but I have issues with many of these.

The first sentiment is that whoever requested the date pays for the date.  On paper, this seems like a valid new policy for an age of equality.  This is, of course, wholly inaccurate.  Realistically, because the modern dating world is populated with women who have been groomed to not take the initiative, lest they be accused of wanting male advances, the majority of dates are requested by men and will therefore also be purchased by men.

There is also the practice of Going Dutch, which generally means “pay separately”.  I prefer not to do this for a number of reasons.  You don’t want to go around painting the Dutch as cheap and selfish, regardless of how you may feel about them.  The other issue is that splitting a bill any way but down the middle can be a chore for the waitstaff, which turns this into an issue about gender and labor.  I don’t want to subject the service staff to the messy pen-marks we’ve scribbled on the receipt to indicate who ordered the Old Fashioned and who ordered the Fuzzy Navel.  Also, I would prefer to not have to acknowledge that I ordered the Fuzzy Navel.

As a man of both feminism and frugality, I’ve found some alternatives to these resolutions:

  1. You Travel.  I Treat.
    This is my favorite.  If my date is saving me a trip somewhere, that’s time in my pocket and I’ll be glad to cover them for that courtesy.  Couple that with the fact that I get to pick a place that I know is within my price range, and close to my place if things go well, and this is plan is (sometimes literally) right up my alley.
  2. Gratuitous Cash
    If one of you insists on picking up the bill, let the other party pay just the tip.  Servers certainly appreciate cash tips.  Just make sure that if you’re paying with a card you write the word “cash” in the tip box on the receipt!  If you don’t, they might think you stiffed them…
  3. Halvesies
    Straight and to the point.  Let’s each put a card down and tell the waiter to split the bill in twain.  We don’t even need to tell the waiter, we could just karate chop the air in front of us and they’ll know what to do.  When I’m on a date with another man, we’re going halvesies.  And many feminists would be glad to hear they are being treated with the same respect and responsibility that I give to a man I’m dating.

No matter which of these you do – or don’t do, I find that discussing the matter before you even decide where to meet goes a long way to prevent getting jammed up when the bill arrives.  And that’s one less hurdle we’ll need jump over on a first date.

Navigating the world of feminism as a man can be tough, though!  Did I miss anything in my efforts to find a solution to the bill at the end of a date?  Anybody else do how I do?  Is my opinion on the matter irrelevant because I am passably cishet male?

Leave your tips in the comments, please!

10 Useful Prophylactic Facts

Outside of getting your sperm supply cut off, male birth control is limited to condoms and abstinence.  Thanks to my American public school sex-education course, you can guess which of these two I learned about…

I’m one of millions of men in this country who was vastly unprepared for and culturally dissuaded from using condoms.  And considering that condoms are essentially the most vital tool for safe sex, sexually active people have got to educate themselves more!

When people use them correctly, condoms are 98% effective.  However, If you just know how to put one on right, you’re already ahead of the curve.  But if you’ve got that first lesson in your sex transcripts, here’s a selection of other vital infortmation for your everyday sex life:

10 Things I Never Learned About Condoms in Sex-Ed

  1. Most Condoms are NOT vegan
    Renouncing the consumption of all animals and animal byproducts is no simple feat, especially when people learn that most condoms are not vegan.  The majority of condoms smooth the latex with a milk protein called casein.  If you don’t want the vegan police to come for you, you should invest in some vegan alternatives.  While most non-latex condoms are incidentally vegan, you may need to double check that.  For a list of confirmed vegan options, follow Vegan.com’s recommendations.
  2. You might NOT have a Latex Allergy
    Research shows that less than 1% of the US population is legitimately allergic to latex. Many who have reactions to latex condoms are actually reacting to certain chemicals (like casein) that are often used in their production.  So if you’re afraid of an allergy, get a doctor to confirm that before you rule out a GIANT portion of the condom market.  While you can try testing at home by trying out different latex condoms until your partner goes into anaphylactic shock; this is not a preferred method to determine allergies, regardless of how hot it would be to blast your partner with an epipen mid-coitus.
  3. Lambskin Sex is NOT Safe Sex
    Lambskin condoms do not protect against viral STDs, like HIV and herpes.  While they do protect against children, the cutest of all the sexually transmitted diseases, viruses are tiny enough to get through the pores in lambskin.  So if you only like the feeling of lambskin, you better only be worried about getting children from your partner.
  4. Buy Online to Save
    Just like printer ink, the condom market preys on desperate people who have run out.  But if you purchase before you need, you pay a fraction of the price!  Even if you’re buying the “best value” at your local pharmacy, you’ll pay half that amount if you order online.  I order in bulks of 100-count packages where I can easily find options that cost $0.05 USD per condom.   While 100 condoms may seem like a lot, condoms are generally good for 5 years (2 years if they have spermicidal lubricant).  Step your safe sex game up and buy for a year of fucking, not just a night.
  5. American Condoms are Rare
    More than 5 billion condoms worldwide are sold every year, according to Michael S. Zedalis, senior vice president in charge of science and technology for condom-maker Ansell Limited.  Of all the brands on the market, the only American company who makes American condoms is Trojan.  Continued support of the American economy means buying American condoms for all your banging needs.
  6. Condom Climate is Important
    Keeping condoms in your wallet or your car is sure useful in a pinch.  But for maximum longevity, condoms need to be kept in a cool, dry place.  The regular frictions put on the average wallet by the average man can deteriorate the condom or puncture the packaging, causing failures.  Keeping them in your car’s glove box can have a similar effect on the condoms.  Excluding the frictions of the glove box, condoms should never be stored anywhere it’s over 100 degrees or cooler than 32 degrees Fahrenheit.  I keep my condoms in an empty Altoids tin in my breast pocket.  It doesn’t get too warm there, not too much turbulence, and I’ve got the room for 4 condoms and a packet of lube!
  7. Flavored Condoms are Probably ONLY for the Mouth
    The same is true for flavored lubricants.  It would be neat if they said this ANYWHERE on the package, but they generally don’t mention that the sugars that make these taste so good also put women at a higher risk for infections like a yeast infection.  While we’re on the subject of women-friendly condoms, spermicidal lubricants also cause irritation which can cause UTIs in women.
  8. Size Matters…kinda
    Here’s a chart for condoms and their sizes.  Unstretched, the smallest “snugger fit” has 58% of the volume that you’ll find in the biggest condom on the market.  That being said, anybody who has ever stuffed their whole head in a condom will tell you that condoms are plenty flexible!  Most “large sized” condoms are the same size as the regular-sized option, but cost 33% more.  Let it never be said that men don’t fall prey to vanity sizing.
  9. Condoms are Especially Important for Buttsex
    While it’s a surefire way to avoid pregnancy.  Just because you’re thinking outside the box, doesn’t mean you’re playing it safe.  Clinical studies show that unprotected anal sex has over twice the HIV risk of its vaginal counterpart.
  10. Condoms Have Tons of Uses
    Even if you’ve decided you’d rather not have sex than do it with a condom on, it’s still beneficial to keep a few in the house!  If you need to waterproof anything or just need a quick bit of latex for tying off something, condoms are good for lots of stuff other than fucking.  And if you have them on hand for those occasions, you won’t be caught unawares if you ever need them for their intended purpose…

I’m always a little shaken by how little people know about condoms.  Often enough, all people know about condoms are the problems they have with them.  If I could address some of those greivances:

  • I can’t feel anything with the condom on
    You lucky duck.  Here I am thinking about baseball and counting prime numbers to stop myself from finishing too fast, and all you have to do is make a prudent decision about the health of yourself and your partner.  Pressuring partners into having unprotected sex with this line is disturbingly common.
    I understand why.  It’s a much more acceptable way of saying “I want to put us both at risk for some reason, and I’m going to bait you into agreeing with me by calling into question your desire for approval.”
    Bad form.
  • The condom is too tight, it cuts off circulation
    I hope your partner isn’t too tight, then!  For real though, try out all the different options on this chart before you decide that no condom in the world has enough room for your enormous pecker.  If you’ve used every single one to no avail, then maybe invest in some female condoms.
  • It takes too long to put it on
    If several seconds is a sizable portion of the time you’re spending making love, you have bigger problems than condom use.  If you feel like putting on a condom interrupts the flow of your session, there are plenty of sexy ways to get the condom on.  Just like taking time in foreplay to get your partner ready, you shouldn’t have a problem with the time it takes to get yourself ready.

That’s just some stuff that I really wish someone had taught me back in the day when I had “sex ed”.  Is there anything you wish you got taught about safe sex when you were in sex ed?  Any important pieces of information about prophylactics I could add to the list?  Feel free to drop those comments in the comments!

What Relationship Anarchist are you?

Bar none, relationship anarchists are my favorite polyamorists.  However, relationship anarchists also make up the vast majority of my least favorite polyamorists.  While polarizing opinions are very rarely drawn between a person and himself, I’ve been musing myself in twain!  Just like political anarchy, relationship anarchy is a profound shift in the existing paradigm.  Also like political anarchy, it can leave people worse off than they were before if the revolution is executed poorly.

Firstly, definitions.  Since the voice of the people is the voice of god.  Here’s Wikipedia’s definition of Relationship Anarchy:

The practice of forming relationships that are not bound by rules aside from what the people involved mutually agree on.

Oooooh, shit!  What a sexy relationship philosophy!

Kinda…

That’s how things look on paper.  It’s tough to apply the structure of language to something as aggressively unstructured as anarchy, though.  In practice, relationship anarchy is manifest in its different subsections; just like political anarchy!  In all my experience with people who self-identify as “Relationship Anarchists”, I’ve found they generally fall into one of two categories:

Relationship Marxists      &      Relationship Libertarians

So if you have been flirting with or subscribing to the notion of relationship anarchy, there’s a real chance you could be one of these persuasions.  But which one?!?

I wish there was a test we could take– like finding out which House you’d be in Hogwarts.  But there’s no Sorting Hat in my sex life (except maybe this one), so we’re forced to self identify.  At its base, relationship anarchy is a DIY relationship.  That broad definition encompasses virtually all alternative lifestyle relationships, though.  I hit up some of my buddies who identify with the relationship anarchy style, and most define it as a form of “non-heirarchical polyamory”.

While many non-monogamists might have a single or number of partners they view as their “primary”, there are some who prefer not to stratify their partners.  And while complete equality of all the relationships in your life is not a realistic achievement, it’s certainly a goal worth reaching for.

Striving for that is what pushes relationship anarchists, and what I truly admire about them.

That being said, no revolution is without people using its tenets to advance their own agenda.  If relationship marxists follow their namesake’s mantra:

“From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs”

So to do relationship libertarians follow their namesake’s mantra:

“Got mine. Fuck y’all”

Alright, that’s harsh.  But I’m a recovering libertarian, so I can say that.  I still think Gary Johnson was the most entertaining third party candidate we’ve had in recent memory, and Ayn Rand has some decent quotes despite the fact that I disagree with the vast majority of her sentiments now.

Not every relationship anarchist I’ve met has a high regard for individual freedoms and personal boundaries.  Many actually assume the mantle of the relationship anarchist to have even more control in a relationship than is normally granted by the unwritten rules laid down by the patriarchy of conventional dating.

Feminist author Jo Freeman has an excellent essay called “The Tyranny of Structurelessness” where she talks about the inherent dangers of unseating the establishment coming from her experiences with the radical feminists of the 1970s.  The dangers she calls out of anarchy are the same as the ones found in relationship anarchy.  Over 30 years after Freeman, another feminist author, Hilary Wainwright, revisited that essay with her own “Imagine There’s No Leaders“.  Wainwright explains:

“lack of structure too often disguised an informal, unacknowledged and unaccountable leadership that was all the more pernicious because its very existence was denied.”

A progressive relationship style with built-in gaslighting?  Opportunistic liberals are chomping at the bit…

I’ve seen this paralleled in the poly communities by self identified “relationship anarchists” who believe that because they have absolved themselves of conventional obligations to their partners, they too can also absolve themselves of basic accountability. 

The solution to people abusing relationship anarchy is the same as the solution to people abusing political anarchy: representation.  The terms of the relationship need to reflect the needs of the partners.  That may lead to obligation or feelings of ownership, but leaving yourself open to that is a better option than leaving yourself open to abuse.  Wainwright goes on to explain:

“The only democratic answer lies in the creation of transparent structures based on collectively agreed rules that may or may not include leaders of some kind.”

Communication, the yardstick of polyamory, is another item that people abusing relationship anarchy often consider themselves ‘above’.  This is the easiest way to determine if you are involved with (or are personally) a relationship libertarian: sit down and have a talk about preferences.  Resistance to discussing shared boundaries often means that a person doesn’t want to get hung up on their route to having a good time.  While any partner, even monogamists, can certainly be opposed to having certain shared boundaries; if just discussing them is off the table, then a stratification exists in that this person’s romantic status quo is their primary.  In such a case, you might be better off leaving them to find some other objectivist heart to live together in whatever romantic utopia makes sense to them.

Relationship marxists on the other hand, are willing to address these issues with real responses.  These people know that we’re all in it together, and preserving one’s individuality does not need to come at a cost of consideration.  If you have the aforementioned discussion of preferences, they will be willing to open that dialogue.  A relationship marxist would come to mutually agreed terms that can keep all parties satisfied.  Even if it comes at some cost to their autonomy.

And I hate to use the word “cost” at the risk of making a relationship feel like it’s an exchange you have to haggle and bargain with.  Relationships don’t need to have a cost.  But everyone has to put in their fare share.

That’s just been my experience with relationship anarchy, though!  Any of you reading are relationship anarchists who think I totally missed the mark?  Anybody else relationship anar-churious and want to share your hesitations?  Relationship libertarians who want to stand up for their rights?  Let’s keep this discussion going in the comments!

Womanizing Your Apartment

I really try to make sure a girl doesn’t regret going home with me.  Making my apartment a little less regrettable is square one in that effort.  Sure, keeping my dirty laundry in a hamper, my filthy dishes in the sink, and my bedsheets absent of mysterious stains is generally enough to keep those regrets at bay; there’s so much more to having a functioning home that will keep the ladies coming back for more of my company.

Like most live-alone bachelors, I don’t have a lot of essentials that a woman would find at one of her girl’s places.  So before all women figure out the benefits of lesbian relationships, let’s take this room-by-room and I’ll tell you some of the most successful additions I’ve made to my apartment to give the fairer sex a reason to visit again.

The Bathroom

If it’s the end of the date, your gal might ask to use your washroom before she goes home.  If you’re bathroom looks amenable to her, she might consider it better to crash at your place than trek home.  Here are some additions I’ve made to keep those considerations considerable:

  1. Femenine Products
    Plenty of girls keep extras of their preferred products in their purse.  If there’s no backup, though, they might be less likely to stay the night away from their rations back home.  While keeping a spare reusable femenine product is certainly environmentally friendly, I doubt every girl you bring home wants to share the same Diva Cup.  I recommend keeping both disposable pads and tampons visible in your bathroom.  For the tampons, Pearl (with an applicator) generally works for everyone in a pinch and is available at most stores.  If you wanna go the extra mile on her cycle, keep some Motrin visible next to the boxes.
  2. Wet Naps
    When a gal says she’s going to “freshen up”, she’s hoping a guy has some of these.  She might use these to wipe the excitement out of her crevasses before taking things to the bedroom and it couldn’t hurt for you to do the same.  Sometimes, they’ll need to freshen up after sex too(esp. if there’s some menstruation and/or backdooring).  And if they don’t have time to go home before work the next day, they can use these to give themselves a field-shower (also known by the less sensitive term “Whore Bath“, guess why).  Unscented Wet Ones (or some legit makeup removal wipes if you wanna score extra points) are also great to have for getting her makeup off before bed so that she doesn’t leave a Pollock painting on the pillow.
  3. A Lined Trash Can with a Lid
    If they are using your wet naps and spare tampons, you better believe your trash can is getting filled with some second-hand womanhood.  A plastic bag will stop things from sticking to the bottom.  A can with a lid will spare your gal the ordeal of having to bury her used products under piles of tissue and toilet paper rolls only to be unearthed the morning after when your dog sniffs into your trash bin and tears the refuse out into a million twisted, brown-red shreds in your kitchen.  And many girls find their used products unsightly, so it’s best to have a lid cover that.
  4. UTI Care
    Of the many benefits there are to being a guy, one is the lack of urinary tract infections.  Most guys go their whole lives without getting one.  On the other hand, 50-60% of women have experienced these painful episodes.  The extra kicker is that UTIs are most commonly caused by having sex.  Given that we’re almost certainly implicit in the infection, so to does the responsibility of treatment fall on the guy’s shoulders.  Invest in some cranberry pills and some AZO (or the store brand urinary pain relief pills) for your lady to limit the physical pain she has reminding her of fucking you.
  5. Hair Care
    As a short-haired guy; I have no need for a hairbrush, curling iron, blow dryer, or bobby pins; but I still have them.  While I used to spike my hair pretty fierce, I haven’t needed any Aqua Net in a long time, but still have it.  I’m sure some girls might wonder why I keep all these things in my bathroom.  But for every one girl that’s wondering, there are 10 girls thanking me for saving their aesthetic for the day.
  6. Miscellaneous Spare Toiletries
    Just like a hotel gives away, keep some items on hand you’re okay throwing away after use.  Here’s what I keep: contact lens cases & solution, toothbrushes, razors, chapstick, safety pins (for bra malfunctions), nail polish (for stocking malfunctions).

The Bedroom

Where the magic happens.  Generally, if they’ve agreed to join me here, I feel like the hard work is already done.  But I could still get hung up on something trivial that will disrupt the romantic flow.  To keep your love machine well oiled, consider making some of the following investments:

  1. Hair Ties
    Most guys don’t understand this struggle.  I’ve sucked plenty of cock and I didn’t understand until I tried doing it while wearing a trashy wig.  It’s hard to slob knob like a lady when your constantly pulling hair out of your mouth.  Certainly a gentleman could hold the hair up for you.  But holding a bun in place tethers your cocksucker, inhibiting their ability to perform fellatio with complete freedom.  Next time you’re at the general store, get a pack of 100, keep them in your bedroom next to the bed so you don’t even need to get up to enhance your BJ!
  2. Spare Chargers
    It’s real easy to have a walk of shame when your phone is dead and you need to get home with nothing to do but think about what happened last night and how visible it is on your person.  But if your phone is full of juice, that walk of shame becomes a triumphant posting of selfies about having the “Best night ever!  Still recovering! #YOLO”
    Have a spare MiniUSB charger for any of your android-using partners, and try to have one of the many different iPhone chargers if for whatever reason you want to cater to the Mac crowd.
  3. Non-Latex Condoms
    Missing some accouterments or other may slow down or choke up the flow of love making.  But if you’re partner has a latex allergy, missing safe sex alternatives will bring your night to a screeching, blue-balled halt.  Invest in a a pack of Polyisoprene, polyeurethane, or lambskin condoms just in case.
  4. Lube
    I know Ronda Rousey said “If you need lube, then you’re being lazy”.  But if she was so smart, then Holm wouldn’t have knocked her the fuck out.  While good foreplay is the cheapest lube, there are plenty of reasons to lube up other than “being lazy”!  Some girls aren’t as naturally wet as others.  And I don’t care how much foreplay you do, you always grease up if you’re going to be backdooring someone.  Keep the lube within arms reach.  And if all possible, get a pump action bottle so that you don’t have to fumble getting the lid open/close.  Buy as much as you might end up using in a year.  Though there’s never an expiration date on lube, experts reccomend about a year before disposal, depending on what kind of lube…
  5. A Towel
    After you grease up your pecker and you’re ready to fuck on all cylinders, you don’t want that slippery and sticky hand to go staining your sheets and ruining your partners hair.  Rub it off on a nearby towel!
    You’re girl on the rag?  Don’t let her cycle turn your bed into a scene from Dexter.  Lay a towel down!
    Just shoot the biggest load of all time onto your partner’s tits/ass/face/feet/cat?  Be a gentleman and reach for a nearby towel to clean up your mess.
    There’s a reason that the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy considers this to be “the most massively useful thing“.  Keep a CLEAN towel near the bed for emergencies!
  6. Hitachi Magic Wand
    Considered by many to be the excalibur of sex toys.  That is in no way an overstatement.  I’ve had girls who were prepared to be dissapointed by all the hype be pleasantly surprised before they wiped the drool from their mouths and started eating that crow.

The Kitchen

My mornings are built in my kitchen.  I build my date’s morning in the kitchen too.  These are my construction tools:

  1. Disposable Coffee Cups
    Being a gentleman and fixing coffee/tea for your gal pal first thing in the morning is a great way to make her feel welcome and appreciated.  If you fix her a cup for the road in a disposable cup with a lid, she’ll be feeling them feels even after she leaves.
  2. Easy Breakfasts
    If you’re sending your gal out with a to-go coffee, you might as well send her with a nutri-grain/cliff-bar/pop-tart/other handheld snack.  These are also great if you need to leave before she does.  On your way out, give her a kiss and tell her to help herself!
  3. Chocolate
    I’m tempted to put this under “feminine products”, but I keep this menstrual aid in the kitchen.
  4. Cold Water Bottle
    It doesn’t have to be name-brand bottled water, but a filled nalgene in the fridge is exactly what you’re both going to want after you’re done with a heart-pumping, high-energy fuckspree.

That’s all I can think of with big thanks to the women in my life for adding some of their insights.  Gals, is there anything you wish guys would have at their places?  If so, post them in the comments for all the aspiring bachelors to put on their grocery list!

What’s in a Number?

I find numbers very sexy.  This has led me to two behaviors with OkCupid.  One -fairly innocuous- idea is that I find people with a higher match percentage more attractive.  The other -kinda peculiar- urge I have is to keep a record of my match percentages with people I meet from the website.

Yeah, it’s weird, but I started doing it when I was unemployed and needed something to fill my days.

This is why we need to build a better economy, it’ll prevent guys like me from having the time to build spreadsheets about weird shit.  If you think I’m bad, you should read some of the studies they do at OkTrends

Anyway…over time, I’ve collected a sample size of 35 percentages.  These are the match percentages of people I’ve met on OkC and with whom I’ve had relations.  I tried to be good about recording these.  Given that 35 is a nearly complete fair size to draw conclusions about my preferences with online dating, here’s what I’ve found with OkCupid dates:

  1. Average Percentage Match: 89%
  2. Median Match: 93%
  3. Highest Match: 99%
  4. Lowest Match: 63%

What can I draw from this data?  Firstly, I can see that a low percentage match will not automatically disqualify a connection.  63% is low.  Like…catfish profile low.  But even then, there’s hope.  So if you ever see someone that seems like your type, but may not have the numbers to push you all the way to send that message, maybe send it anyway!

Outside of that, it tells me that I generally end up in the bedroom with people in or around the 90% match range.

Makes sense.  When I’m browsing profiles and see a high percent match; it’s just as sexy as seeing a photo of them at the beach, a number of different languages spoken, or listing Digimon as one of their favorite shows.  But this provokes a whole different series of questions about whether or not we would have slept together if we didn’t have such a high match.

Did we sleep together because we were a good match or did we sleep together because we had a high match?

OkCupid programmers actually lied to their users one time in an effort to test the persuasive ability of the algorithm.  It’s a very interesting study in consumption of statistics and also involuntary experimentation if you want to read that here.  The final numbers on their study were as such:

OkCupid-experiment

The end results of this experiment did confirm my suspicions, but not by that much.  Was I being swayed by a big, strong, match percent? Maybe…Marginally, at most.

While that study yielded results based on comparing their real algorithm to a fake algorithm, I wanted a more comprehensive comparative sample.  I collected the data from people that I have found on OkCupid after we’d already met somewhere else.

Maybe we met at a party, on tinder, or in line at the Planned Parenthood and had a liaisons before they showed up in my Quickmatch later on and I scribbled down our numbers.  Obviously this sample size is smaller (20 entries), but as a tool for comparison, that’s a substantial value.  This is a real test of the OkCupid algorithm:

How do OkCupid matches compare to real life matches?

If we met on OkCupid…

If we met outside Okcupid…

Average Match

89%

88%

Median Match

93%

94%

High Match %

99%

99%

Low Match %

63%

37%

 

These numbers barely have a deviation.  It’s almost a little disturbing…

To be extra sciency, I had my most skillful statistician buddy run the two sets of data through a T-Test Calculator which yielded a p-value of .844416.  After I had him explain to me what that meant, I learned that OkCupid matches are the same percent as my existing romantic life 84% of the time.

84 whole percents? That’s nothing to scoff at.  OkCupid gets a B- at my dating life!  Or as my aforementioned stat-nerd-bro puts it, “It means their algorithm really is quite good”.

While the OkCupid study was able to illustrate how fake their numbers can be, I think my data indicates just how real things can be.  While this study is based on a limited sample size (35 Okc dates Vs. 20 IRL dates), I believe this to be a representative sample of my dating life as a whole.

The one outlier comes from the significantly lower lowest I found in my non-OkC dates.  At nearly half the percentage match of my lowest OkC, my lowest matches from real life might have come from a time when I didn’t have a computer program to tell me it was a bad idea.

Higher match percentage may not always make an online date more attractive, but a very low match percentage is apparently a bigger deal for electronic affections.

The study needs more data.  If you’d like to help, feel free to come over and sleep with me, then we can share match percentages and I could add them to my spreadsheet.  All my grant requests have been denied for me to conduct this study, however.  If you would like to take part, you’ll have to test pro-bono

Anyway…Do you keep track of your percentages?  How do you think your results vary?  Have you found the OkC algorithm to be a fair decider for a good match?  Post in the comments!

Down with OPP

For conventional dating, the three word phrases that usually send people running are “I love You” and “Ass to Mouth”.  In the world of nonmonogamy, there is a different three words that go bump in the night:

One Penis Policy

The OPP; also known as polygyny, hareming, or the “Highlander-Cock Rule”.  I’m talking about the relationship style that is a form of a cis-heterosexual coupling that is non-monogamous.  The stipulation to their non-monogamy being that while the man is allowed to have whatever outsider partners he likes, his female partner may only have relations with other women.

You might have known some people with an OPP (One Penis Policy), you might have even been one of those couples.  I know I was.

It was when I was a young, scared, and still recovering from being a monogamist.  And fuck me running if it didn’t make me feel secure to adopt a lifestyle that’s incidentally one of the most desired male fantasies in existence.  As a crutch, having an OPP eased me into polyamory just fine.  But now that I’ve spread my wings (and have them tested regularly), I can fly free in the winds of non-exclusivity and I look back on where I came from and see the real issues with it.  Firstly and simply, it’s not fair to the woman in the relationship.  It’s also dismissive of the connections that are built between women.  Ultimately though, it’s not really a necessary step to being truly open with each other.

Being truly open relies on being fair.  It relies on having a realistic understanding of the expectations you have for your partner.  I encourage guys to try playing with their own asshole before they try anal with their girlfriend.  I encourage guys to try body waxing before they expect brazillians.  It’s good to know what it’s like to be on the receiving end before you buy a pretense.  In this case, I’m talking about being on the receiving end of somebody else’s nonmonogamy with a heterosexual partner.

While some guys might feel like the only way they could be nonmonogamous and secure is if their girlfriend was with another woman.  If that’s the case for you, you’re letting your greed and insecurity undermine your partner’s pursuit of happiness; which fundamentally opposes nearly all the virtues of polyamory.  And to tack it onto the historical practice of polygyny as a tool for female oppression, the OPP has no place in modern polyamory.  Modern polyamory is also feminist polyamory.  Modern polyamory cannot exist in a space where men are explicitly given liberties not also offered to women.

To be blunt, the OPP is misogynist.

To be extra blunt, the OPP is misogynist and homophobic.

Having the policy doesn’t make you Jerry Falwell, but it does dismiss the legitimacy of connections built in the absence of heterosexuality.  I didn’t feel like I was being homophobic when I was doing it.  Hell, I felt like I was a champion of the queer movement for allowing my partner to indulge her bisexual desires.  I fancied myself to be the great liberator, imparting my superior male blessings upon her playful acts of want and carnality.

Like I said, I was young.  Did I say stupid?  I was stupid too…

The OPP is not an ally of the queer movement.  It’s quite the opposite.  It’s tantamount to telling your partner:

“I’m possessive of you and feel threatened by the idea of seeing you build a heterosexual connection.  I recognize that you are more secure in our relationship, and can abide the limitations I am neglecting to extend also to myself.  Because I consider homosexual relations between women to be novel and trivial, I will allow them.”

The OPP fundamentally relies on the idea that a sapphic encounter is somehow not “real sex.”

I assure you, it is.  And girls can be just as territorial and possessive as boys when it comes to romance.  So if there’s a worry that a another man will somehow upstage the relationship dynamic, then a real solution is to avoid nonmonogamy altogether.  If you’re new to nonmonogamy, set whatever boundaries make you feel comfortable.  But I implore newbies to avoid having a long term OPP.

Even if you don’t have an official OPP, you’ll probably end up with a de-facto OPP.  For several of my partners, I have been their only male partner.  It’s not because I’ve established a set of rules preventing anything otherwise.  It’s because of an underlying truth about modern courtship:

Dating guys sucks.

Trust me, I’ve done it.  There’s a reason I’m on the straighter end of bisexual.  There are lots of reasons, actually.  Women don’t mind taking things slowly.  Women are more willing to talk about their feelings.  Women are self lubricating.  My partners and I have mostly dated women simply because it’s generally a much more pleasant experience.  Making a policy for it is unnecessary and functions only to perpetuate the marginalizing of women and queers.

If you’re a standup guy, then you’ve set the bar for the quality of gentleman that your lady will desire.  Lesser basic bros will be turned away by her having a confident man in her life.  If there’s a worry that being open to other men will somehow invite the creepers to start making their advances, I can understand that.  But for those of us who have seen the modern dating market, we know that creepers will make their advances regardless of how your relationship is identified.  Even if the man in a given relationship was out of the picture, and the woman was on the dating market as an asexual lesbian only looking for distance partners, she would still be accosted by straight male creepers.  She’d also probably get accosted by couples with an OPP…

Anybody here ever have an OPP?  How did it go for you?  Post in the comments!

How Many

When I was 12-years-old, we had a special presentation at school.  The teacher called two kids up to the front.  She called up Gary because he was her favorite and she called up me, because I might fall asleep if she didn’t.  She gave us a bag of Cheetos each and we scarfed them down like the ravenous tweens we were.  Then she poured us both a glass of water but told us not to drink it.  She told me to put the water in my mouth and swirl it around before I spit it back into the glass.  She had Gary hold up his glass of clean water and asked the class who would drink that water.  There were confused looks of consent all around.  Then she had me hold up my glass of chunky pale-orange cloudy water and asked who would rather drink this water.  There was a resounding disapproval.  Some kids audibly gagged, others simply let out a disturbed wimper.  When the noises died down, the whole class had a look of softened disgust.

This was my first ever class in sexual education.

Flash forward to last night’s pillow talk.  New person – we’ve spent some nights together, and we finally start feeling each other out conversationally.  We get to the subject of previous sexual partners.  We’re still green, but they end up asking the question:

“how many?”

While guys are known for often exaggerating numbers involving sexuality, I prefer to play an honest game.  We haven’t known each other that long, but I imagine my date’s picked up on that.  I inquire if they actually want to know the number.  I’m curious if they’re ready for the answer.  I want them to be confronted with the idea that this one number might change their opinion of my quality as a partner.  And be ready for an answer they may not like.  I’ll fudge my opinions when my gal asks me how their hair looks first thing in the morning, but I’m not going to fudge a number.

how many?”

This isn’t a number like my age, which is fluctuating, but consistent.  This isn’t my pants size, which would go down if I just stopped eating at Culvers.  And this isn’t a number that’s pretty much set, like the number of Y chromosomes I have.  They were asking me a very specific number concerning a very sensitive part of my life.  This is like asking somebody how many funerals they’ve ever attended.

I lied.

I said a thousand.  While I’m certain there are plenty of people who wouldn’t be lying when they said that, I gather my date got the joke.  We giggle and I ask them why they want to know.  Are they afraid that I’m somehow riddled with disease?  Are they imagining I’m bound to have at least one psychotic ex if I’ve had that many?  Are they worried they won’t seem as special with someone who’s had more than the average?

They tell me they’re just curious.

how many?”

I tell them the truth.  I can tell it’s not as much as they were afraid of.  I can tell it’s more than they’re used to.  I’ve answered this question before.  It gets easier to answer every time, but it’s hard to shake a sense of shame that’s been groomed into me since I was 12 years old holding up a glass of dirty water in front of a class that looks disgusted.  That’s how it feels whenever somebody asks.

how many?

Finding a New Deen

In the wake of the numerous allegations of assault being charged against James Deen, many of us have lost our infatuation the golden boy of modern adult media.  Deen was on track to dethrone Ron Jeremy as the most well-known male actor.  And Jeremy has been doing a lot more than just sitting on that throne for many years now.

For many of us, finding the right porno to watch can be a daunting task.  It’s like the first day of school after you get your meal in the cafeteria, then you need to decide where to sit.  James Deen was like that kid that you knew just well enough that if you ever saw him at a table, you knew that you could sit next to him talking about pokemon cards.  He may not have been in your clique, but he always said hi to you in the hallway and if you ever got partnered up for a group project, he wouldn’t let you down.

But after everything that’s happened, he’s like that kid that you sat next to in a bathroom stall one time and you heard some really awful, guttural noises coming from the other side.  Now every time you see him, all you can do is see what you imagined happening on the other side of that stall.  You see tooth-gritting-fist-clenching deuce dropping.  You may not know exactly what transpired, but what you heard makes you not want to eat around him ever again.

So too goes James Deen.  Regardless of his previous accomplishments for adult media and feminism, I can’t shake the numerous accusations against him and enjoy his work.

And now begins the search for the new male adult star that will take our hearts doggy-style and not make stupid faces when he finishes.  As I consider myself a connoisseur of the art of pornography, I have some recommendations.  So with no further ado, in no particular order, and with tightening pants, I present:

10 Male Actors Who Could
Become Porn’s New Frontman

  1. Derrick Pierce:
    DerrickPierceHe has an outstanding resume with the people at Kink.com as well as playing villains in many XXX superhero spoofs (including playing a very good DP scene).  While he may commonly play a top-heavy dom in kink scenes, he sticks around for aftercare scenes and seems like a real sweetheart.
  2. Christian XXX
    ChristianXXXWhile he originally performed gay porn under the name “Maxxx Diesel”, he has since transitioned to doing straight scenes in addition to his previous work.  In doing this, he is actually standing up for bi/pansexual performers.  There are female performers who have refused to work with him because his is not heterosexual.  He carries it just fine, giving and receiving from many genders, even those identifying as non-binary.
  3. Tommy Pistol
    TommyPistolWhile he’s always been the Dean Koontz to James Deen’s Stephen King, things are changing.  He is poised to eclipse Deen as the non-threatening Joseph Gordon-Levitt of porno.  With his dedication to making nerd porn and his tattoos (the most notable of which being a large Aqua Teen Hunger Force graphic on his side), he’s the new age boy next door.  His look is scruffy and his body is not chiseled.  He looks like the kind of guy that you would have a very stable, functioning sex life with.
  4. Danny D
    DannyDI first encountered Danny D in an adult adaptation of Harry Potter where he played the title character.  The scene was real hot. When he screamed “EXPELLIAMUS!” as he performed his moneyshot at the end, I knew this boy was going somewhere.  If you would like to see a little more of this Englishman’s horcrux, there’s an entire tumblr dedicated to it.  Check it out, I’d definitely call it a death stick (NSFW).  He’s got an unassuming cuteness and an understated look that’s carried powerfully by his neat accent and enormous penis.
  5. Ryan Driller
    01/20/2012 - Ryan Driller - AVN Adult Entertainment Expo - Day 3 - Hard Rock Hotel - Las Vegas, NV, USA - Keywords: Adult Video News Orientation: Portrait Face Count: 1 - False - Photo Credit: Glenn Francis / PR Photos - Contact (1-866-551-7827) - Portrait Face Count: 1Driller has the looks of a standard all-american hunk.  It’s no surprise they’re asking him to play superheroes like Captain America and Superman in their respective adult adaptations.  He carries himself like a real standup guy in all of his interviews to boot!  Talking about the importance of respecting and listening to women.  He even made the adult adaptation of 50 Shades of Grey watchable!
  6. Levi Cash
    LeviCashHe’s a dopplebanger for Breckin Meyer, so if you’ve ever wanted to live out that fantasy where you have sex with the underdog of some comedy set in a college campus, look no further.  Driving that point home, he’s even appeared in adult adaptations of films like Weird Science.  He’s the kind of guy that you root for while you’re watching him bang.

 

 

 

7.  Xander Corvus
Kinkster, cosplayer, and punk musician with a voice like Tom Waits.  He’s a little grungier than the everyman people might expect to be the figurehead for adult entertainment.  But if you look past the patchy beard and the snakebite lip piercings, he’s got some solid ideas about the adult industry that might make him perfectly suited for the visibility.
8.  Logan Pierce

LoganPierce

A filmmaker first, culturalist second and incidentally a pornographer.  While he’s certainly got a sexual soul, it’s clear that he’s not the sexual deviant who typically signs up for a porno.  He’s got a real sweet way about him when I watch where I can tell he and his partner are having a really great time.  As a figurehead for pornography, I think he would certainly be more palatable than the some of the more deviant options.

9.  Tee Reel
TeeReelThere’s all this talk about making the next Doctor Who or the next James Bond a person of color.  If we’re ready to see a staple of nerd culture or a staple of action cinema go there, we really do need to step up our porno game.  In addition to facilitating any fantasies you may have had about having sex with the Old Spice Guy, he’s also a solid role model for aspiring adult entertainers everywhere.  After getting his degree in film, he worked on making music videos before he pushed to produce, direct, and star in his own adult films.

10.  Seth Gamble

SethGambleHe’s one of the few male performers that has rhythm when he needs to dance in musical scenes of adult films.  Which is a throwback to his time as an exotic dancer.  Probably why he was one of the leads in the adult adaptation of Magic Mike.  By his own admission, it was tough for him to sign up for adult media, because he doesn’t think he could be on the Disney channel afterwards.  But realistically, he could have been the kind of kid that you grew up watching on Even Stevens.

 

Those are my picks.  Just like not everyone knows about what’s transpired with James Deen, I may not know about some seedy underbelly of these performers.  So if you know anything that would disqualify any of these guys from being a good representative, post it in the comments!  If there’s anybody I missed that you think should be on this list, post them too!

Deen has some big shoes to fill, but these fellas are good at filling all sorts of spaces.

What’d the Five Fingers Say to the Face?

Something scary happened in my bed one time.

Now, I fancy myself to be a little experienced in the bedroom.  But I’m still in my 20s.  All my ‘experiences’ are just the tip of what a real adult sex life looks like.

Me and my gal went out for the night.  We hit up a coffee shop, caught a movie, slipped in for the tail end of a party, drank Sangria and laughed hard until we started weeping fruity, crimson tears; then we turned in.

We crawled into bed and started getting frisky.  I touched her up and down.  We smooched and squeezed and spanked.  She is a foreplay junky, and it only gets worse when she’s drinking, so we were drunkenly fondling and tonguing each other for the better part of an hour.  After this spell, I stuff a hard dick into her and we go to Pound Town.

Pound Town is a wild country with this gal.  She is a bit of a tomboy.  She plays softball, fucks girls, and has a wrestling fetish.  She can be a real lady too.  She likes dresses and makeup and the Gilmore Girls.  Though lets her fuzzy navel grow freely.  She’s proud of that.  Sex with this gal is an interesting combo of wiles, both feminine and masculine.

Now, I get scared in the bedroom.  All the time.  For all sorts of different reasons.  I get scared that my partner won’t find me attractive.  I get scared that I won’t be able to get it up.  I get scared that I won’t be rough enough.  I get scared that I’ll be too rough.

I get scared that I am too rough.  But as a top-heavy kinkster, I’ve never really been scared of my partner being too rough.  But I had a very real experience with this girl when she unannouncedly slapped me in the face mid coitus.  Hard.

She slapped the shit out of me.

There were a number of different feelings this provoked in me.  I was startled.  I was angry.  And I was scared on a whole series of levels.  I was scared for my safety because she engaged in a direct mechanical strike without negotiating that level of physicality with me.  I was scared I made a very inaccurate judgement of my partner’s dedication to my safety.  And I was scared of the anger I felt.  I slapped her back.

I slapped the shit out of her.

After I did that, I told her we needed to stop.  The emotions that were running hot in my horny lizard brain were something that needed to be checked immediately.  I pulled out and threw in the towel like somebody just showed me a picture of Gary Busey.  She was polite enough to offer me a session of gentle cuddles and relaxed conversation.

Laying there, all flustered and frantic, I asked what provoked her to do that.  She said she had no idea.  She told me that she was just overcome with an intense urge to slap me stupid and it happened virtually without a thought.  I wasn’t going to judge her too harshly, though.  I’ve certainly pulled a spur-of-the-moment move that wasn’t received as well as I had predicted.  So I wrote it off as just one of those things you do and she acknowledged my hesitations as legitimate and it was never a problem ever again.

It was never a problem with her, at least.

A year later, I’m with a different young lady.  She has different proclivities, different styles, and has never met the lady from the previous anecdote.  But still, despite complete separation from my previous experience, this girl behaved in a very similar fashion.  We were getting hot and heavy like two frottage-wild teenagers.  After we started splicing sex organs, she looked up at me with this face that I’ve only seen Jack Nicholson make.  Sure enough, without warning, she reeled back with her strong hand and slapped me right across the face.

She slapped the shit out of me.

This wasn’t my first rodeo, though.  So I kept my cool and just held her arms down and fucked her crooked like a calm and collected young man.  It wasn’t as startling as the first time, but it still wasn’t real pleasant.  Not so unpleasant I had to stop, though.

After we had wrapped things up and she was cleaning the Hitachi and I was putting away the N64 Rumble-Pack, we cuddled up and I had to inquire.

Why do that thing that you done?

She said something similar to the last explanation I had received.  She wasn’t entirely sure.  But in the heat of the moment, cracking me across the kisser like she was a pimp named Slickback seemed a totally logical decision.  We had a few words, and just resolved to ask before exchanging that kind of intimacy in the future.

The third time I was with a gal who suddenly slapped me in the face during sex, I just said “please don’t do that” and carried on.

And yes, she slapped the shit out of me.

I could dismiss an isolated incident with this kind of behavior.  But three independent, non-consecutive occurrences has led me to believe that this might be something worth exploring more comprehensively.  This experience has led me to some new ideas about the realms of sexuality.  Firstly, nobody falls 100% on either side of the dom/sub spectrum. This is also a fine reason to remind people about the importance of prior consent in the bedroom.

Just like gender, sexuality, or any other conventionally accepted false dichotomy; there is a wide spectrum of potential standings for how dominant or submissive somebody is in the bedroom.  I’ve seen diehard subs who would lick strange things off stranger places and like it just because they were being told.  I’ve seen these same subs be absolutely enamored with the idea of their dom being tied up before being serviced.  Similarly, I’ve seen plenty of domineering, heavy-handed doms start to swoon when somebody mentions pulling their hair.

The point is that nobody falls completely on either end of the spectrum.  There is no factory-standard set of sexual preferences.  And it’s dangerous to assume.  I’ve had partners in the past forge ahead without asking based on their previous successes and I have been very startled at some of these attempts.  You should ask before trying something new with a partner, ideally.  You should definitely ask if your partner will need to look it up before they agree.

We need to explore these different aspects of our own preferences.

We need to explore the shit out of them.

On Receiving Rejection

In the dating game, I wish people could be put in the penalty box for unsportsmanlike conduct.  One of the most common and heinous acts of unsportsmanlike conduct I’ve seen is the inability to take a refusal with a little grace.  Maybe I just get rejected so much that I think it’s a necessity.  But unless you’re deluded enough to think you’re always going to be “winning“, there will be times when you’re not winning.

I use the phrase “not winning” instead of “losing” for a number of reasons.  Firstly, everyone in the dating game is a winner as long as you’re being respectful and polite.  I also dislike the idea of rejection as losing because it implies that the goals of being courtly are solely romantic conquest.  It also implies that if you’re a “loser”, you have nothing left the lose.

Plenty of hopefuls have felt slighted by a “no” and have done some silly-ass shit in response.  I did when I was young and rambuncious and couldn’t comprehend the idea that someone wouldn’t be interested in a lothario like myself.  So I made a total ass of myself and tried to make them feel as bad for rejecting me as I felt for being rejected.  It wasn’t thoughtful.  It wasn’t constructive.  And it ruined any chance I might have had.

Plenty of people don’t understand that a “no” might very well become a “yes” if you’re patient and respectful.  That being said, I’ve come a long way from my r/seduction-reading, fireball-guzzling youth.  Sure, it would be nifty if being understanding of a rejection awakened someone’s need to be with an empathetic partner and they change their mind immediately after hearing a graceful acceptance of refusal.  Primarily though, doing this enriches a shame free dating culture.  Which is a dramatically more noble calling then constantly cruising for ass.

Respond well and you could be accepted later.

Respond well and you might make a new friend.

Most importantly though, respond well to help foster a culture where people aren’t afraid to say “no”.

So many people are practically incapable of saying “no”.  This is partly because a huge population  (esp. women) is groomed from a tender age to not say it.  This is also because the few who have mustered a refusal are very often met with backlash in the form of dismissal, insults, even threats.  Because of this, and the proliferation of literature about “winning”, I thought it would be valuable to offer my experience with keeping a sense of style when you’re not winning.  I have a lot of experience…

Handling your rejection can be done with contextual candor, depending on the circumstances:

  1. On Teh Internets
    I message so many people, I inevitably receive replies explaining that I am too old/young/male/short/Irish.  If they put the effort into writing me a refusal, I’m obligated as a gentleman to write an understanding acceptance of it.  By far, the most common refusal I get is when I ask people if polyamory is a dealbreaker:
    BPResponse
    Firstly, I gotta assure them that there’s nothing wrong with having preferences that don’t fit me.  Just like there are plenty of people I don’t want to date, I want to acknowledge my respect of their right to not want to date me.  Next, I make sure to thank them for taking the time to write a reply.  They could have not read my messages, or pretended not to have read it, or read it and wrote a disgruntled reply full of pointed comments about my bushy eyebrows.  But they didn’t.  They spent time providing me a conclusive communique.  I better recognize.  Finally, I put the ball in their court.  In any courtship, it falls on the suitor to initiate contact.  My last move is to offer that responsibility to them.
    While it may not have a great turnover rate (28.7%).  It does have a better turnover rate than offering a shitty response to their refusal (0%).  If someone offers a response, even a rejection, they have opened a communication that is civil.  You could walk away with a new friend at the very least.
  2. IRL
    You might meet someone at the party, or on the train, or at the anime fitness convention and feel a spark.  You might finally try to manifest those feelings you’ve been sitting on to ask out someone close to you in an effort to break out of the friend-zone.  Or you might just ask someone out who’s not as into you as you are into them and your date proposal is met unreciprocatedly.  The best course of action to just move along like it never happened.
    Will it make things awkward between the two of you?  Not really.
    The only difference between two peoples’ interactions after a date request is unrequited is that a future romantic engagement is significantly less likely.  If your friendship or civility with someone hinges so heavily on a potential date, you may not actually be that good of a friend.  If the answer is “no”, FIDO.
  3. Unfinished Symphony
    Just because somebody said “yes” to a date, doesn’t mean you have standing consent for the rest of the encounter.  With regular and consistent communication, you may very well find out that your date may not be interested in taking a step you’re gearing towards.  If they agreed to hold your hand, they may not want to kiss.  If they agreed to give you a kiss, they may not wanna bang.  If they agreed to go to bed with you, they may not have the kind of sex you want to have.
    When you’re taking intimacy somewhere new, your partner might say something like “I think we’re moving too fast”, or “I don’t know if I want to do that”, or “Let’s get back to the table before our waiter thinks we left”.
    All these things mean “no”, which also means no.  So ease back and keep your hands to yourself for a spell.  This might mean keep them to yourself for the rest of the night, this might mean keeping them to yourself until your partner is ready to get back to pound-town.  Ultimately, it means they’re calling the shots for a minute.  Don’t feel tempted to test how far they’re willing to go by letting your hands wander until they’re met with another refusal.  Don’t feel tempted to try and barter some hanky panky with offers like “Could you gimme a BJ instead?” or “Just the tip?.  You’ve established that you want to go farther than they do.  So let them decide how far y’all are going because they know you’re game.  Say something to the effect of “What would you be comfortable doing instead?”  If they are too frazzled to make a decision about where intimacy is going, you’re probably done for the night.
    It’s a bummer, but it happens.
    If anything, just ask them if you can hold them and then try and conk out for the night.  If you have a stone-hard-life-threatening boner that you really have to do something about, just go crank one out in the bathroom.  I encourage people to say nothing about giving yourself a quick treat in private.  If you ask/tell your partner about what you’re going to do, that’s kind of pressuring them to ‘satisfy’ you.  At the same time, trying to sleep with blue balls is sometimes like trying to sleep with your socks on.  I can’t do it.  So if you’ve been building up all night but release got denied, in the most discreet way possible, hit up the john for the old crap’n’fap.
  4. Hitting Hard Limits
    Similar to the unfinished symphony, if you’re asking an existing partner for something new, they may not be as interested as you are.  Make sure you discuss taking these steps together while your clothes are still on to give your partner time to come to an informed decision about what route to take with this knew desire they know about you.  This could be an opportunity to explore something new together, or this could be a wedge that gets driven into the relationship.  The most common limit that people hit refusal for is anal.  Because it’s placed on this pedestal as a sexual holy grail, and because it’s real tough to do; lots of relationships hit this bump.  But it’s true of virtually any snag of intimacy due to hesitations, not just buttsex.  This could happen if you’re asking your partner for a sexy roleplay, or if you’re asking your partner for a threeway, or to draw stairs on an etch-a-sketch while pegging him.  If the answer is no, you’ve got some options:

    1. FIDO
      Continue the relationship without getting this thing you want.  Ever.
      San Savage calls this the “Price of Admission“.  Ask yourself if this person means enough to you that you are willing to carry on without getting this particular intimacy that you desire.  Hopefully, they’re worth it.  Your desire may fade, or it may fester and mold out into stewing enmity between you and your partner.
    2. Pass the Pace
      Accept the no.  If you respect it, it could very well become a yes later on.  A tentative yes could become their favorite activity with you, or it might become a special treat they give you on birthday and Hanukkah.  But the only way it’ll become anything is if you’re respectful and don’t push too hard.  Take it at their pace, or just slow as a glacial pace; whichever is slower.
    3. Non-Monogamy
      Outsource your desires.  If your partner doesn’t want to get pegged, but you absolutely have to; if the two of you are comfortable with it, branch out.  Hit up Craigslist or AdultFriendFinder for something casual.  Adopt a lifestyle of polyamory if you’re considering something more invested.
    4. Cut Bait
      If you’re not willing to pay the price of admission, but want to remain monogamous, I strongly encourage ending the relationship.  As I mentioned before, desire may become frustration which may become enmity.  By the time you hit enmity, you might be so deeply entwined that you just resolve yourself to being permanently romantically affixed to someone who cannot satisfy you.

If there was a penalty box for the dating world, it would be filled with people who didn’t realize they were doing anything wrong.  We’re still getting used to this whole asking thing, so of course there’s going to be some hiccups in the realm of getting a refusal.  But consent culture won’t be built over night.

Have you ever refused someone and gotten a good response accepting your refusal?  If so, what was it?
How do you handle refusals?  If you never get them, what’s your secret?  Please post in the comments below!  If you refuse to post in the comments, I respect that decision.

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