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Jul 24 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Savage Love Letter of the Day: Gone Camping.
Let's rewrite the letter from his POV, while granting that everything the LW has written is true. But let's make it a shorter letter than hers.

"My partner and I consider ourselves to be open. We hadn't had sex with anyone else until recently. My partner handled it poorly and apparently cannot be monogamish due to her jealousy.

We went to a fun camping event this past weekend and I met someone. When my GF felt like I was ignoring her, I blew off my new friend and we spent time together on Sunday.

My GF gave me permission to make out with the woman I had met. On Monday morning, I was making out with her and my GF walked up as things were starting to heat up. I thought everything was cool - we'd agreed I could. I gave her the "thumbs up, thumbs side, thumbs down signal," and she thumbed down. I stopped the sex and she told him we needed to talk. We agreed we should meet back at camp and I went to talk to her as soon as I'd wrapped things up with the new friend.

This feels like a 100% betrayal to her. While I'm wondering what part of "open" didn't she understand? If she had some line in the sand - no naked play, no PIV, or no orgasm, whatever - she could have just told me in advance. Or even in the moment. What's so hard about that? "Take your hand off her breast" or "Don't fuck her." But apparently her hand sign meant I should run screaming from my encounter like the new lady had the plague. Isn't it obvious that you should roll our your hard-and-fast limits in advance? Unless really what she wants is to micro-manage me during a fling?

Now she presents it as cheating, when we'd agreed TO BE OPEN in advance. I know what you're going to say, Dan: DTMFA - she's not ready to be in an open relationship.

But I really like her, I thought we were getting along great as a couple and was thrilled that we were like-minded about having an open relationship. Is there any hope for her to learn how to lay out her rules in advance instead of springing them on me during a hook-up? Or she just a "controlling bitch" like you've identified other letter writers and, really, being in an "open relationship" was only appealing to her because she'd get to jerk me around like this?"
Jul 21 DAVIDinKENAI commented on HIV+ People On Drug Cocktails Can't Pass the Virus to Their Sex Partners.
@7: Thanks for your perspective. It IS great news for anyone who is poz or involved with someone who is. Therefore slightly more people will get tested and treated if positive results won't mean forever writing off unprotected sex with most people. And it (gives the choice to) open up the dating pool for anyone. So it is great news for everyone, poz or not, in a discordant LTR or not.
Jul 21 DAVIDinKENAI commented on HIV+ People On Drug Cocktails Can't Pass the Virus to Their Sex Partners.
M&M @4: Right. Doesn't seem to have been written by a science reporter, "the potential to eradicate the virus when all infected people die natural deaths" ?!? Millions of people, over many decades, will ALWAYS be compliant even though many don't know they are HIV+. And everyone in the world will receive health care. And IV drug users won't share needles. Ever.


It's great news. But don't turn it into something it is not.
Jun 30 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Naked Bike Ride Drama in Portland: Nude Roller Skater vs. Homophobes.
If Bible-thumpers go to a titty bar, they'd be committing a sin. And would have to pay the cover charge.

While protesting a naked bike ride is free and confronting a topless woman is "good work". And offers the same scenery.
Jun 12 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Savage Love Letter of the Day: Monogamous Commitments vs. Monogamous Ultimatums.
@11 and @19: I agree that they should both be nice to each other as they exit the relationship. But while the LW putting her through law school wasn't exactly a quid pro quo for her participation in a semi-swinging lifestyle, it certainly was in the context of a LTR, hopefully leading to potentially a life time together. He now knows (and she apparently knew earlier) the price of admission he'd have to pay (being monogamous, which he can't do) so a happy LTR is not in the cards. Should he support her for one more school year? Not IMO. Maybe for the next semester. How about student loans? They're a thing. Lawyers have salaries after graduation that can repay student loans. They need to sit down, in the bleak light of day, acknowledge their tragic mismatch, and figure out a kind and gentle way to each move on. That could be quick or gradual. I'd suggest quickly ending the sexual component and gradually weaning off the emotional and financial support.

And the non-monetary support? At first, they both were thinking "LTR". And there was emotional support going both ways. But then she realized / acknowledged / fessed up that she was going to back pedal the monogamishemy. That emotional support is only going to get more strained as he feels lied to and she (should) feel guilty about misleading him (intentionally or not). They should let each other seek out what they really want (monogamy for her, more freedom for him) while their friendship is still intact. Each in their own apartment, whoever is paying for it, seems less fraught with guilt, obligation, and frustration than continued co-habitation given their sexual mismatch.
Jun 11 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Savage Love Letter of the Day: Monogamous Commitments vs. Monogamous Ultimatums.
Since when did "putting someone through school" make you LESS able to leave? I've done this very helpful thing for you to date - supporting you with housing (and other expenses?) while you are in school, so now I have to continue doing that for the duration, even after our relationship status has changed from 'looks great' to 'this ain't such a great match"?!?

I know, inertia and all that. Fear of change. What will other people think? Etc. Tuition payments, a futon, and raising a goldfish together are just a tiny taste of how mortgage, kids and in-laws can make you feel tied down in a marriage. Since the chances are good that you will have to sever the knot in a more serious relationship, this DTMFA could be a helpful exercise in developing those skills.
May 29 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Supreme Court Poised to Fuck Urban America.
Isn't there, alarmingly, a wider spectrum of choices? Each of these steps descends from some red/blue balance to a red, super majority.
- based on population (any age, any citizenship)
- based on population (any age, US citizens only)
- based on eligible voters (non-felon, adult US citizens)
- based on active voters (participation in the last election determines representation in the next) - this is scariest of all as it would shift far more power to towns like mine and away from cities like yours. Before you poo-poo this horror scenario, how many people thought corporations should have all the rights of natural persons just 10 years ago? And a number of states base initiative qualification and recall petitions on active voter numbers so there is precedence.
May 29 DAVIDinKENAI commented on Value Village Flower Bed Death Watch.
"They're dead, Jim."
May 21 DAVIDinKENAI commented on SL Letter of the Day: Send the Flowers.
@6: Of course, YMMV, but my experience was that the acute aspects of grief diminished greatly over two years and I've seen that timeframe referenced elsewhere. I certainly wasn't suggesting anything beyond two years. Following up with someone a dozen years later does seem odd and, yes, even ghoulish. That multiple people are calling your mother this long after is perhaps a generational / sectarian thing. My Irish Catholic aunts, born in the 19th-century, might do that. But they'd also stop, if asked.
May 21 DAVIDinKENAI commented on SL Letter of the Day: Send the Flowers.
@1 - The LW wasn't saying, "I'm going to send flowers, but I have concerns." He was saying he wasn't going to send flowers because. . . , so the take-down was partly deserved.

Still, a bit harsh. I read columns like this as not aimed the individual letter writer but aimed at the vast millions of readers who need to be shaken out of their own assumptions and thoughtless behaviors. The LW doesn't need a sledge hammer - he thought to ask. But the readers who hadn't pondered this question before need to be hit harder to get the message.

I know flowers are traditional, but, really? Who needs to schlep a bunch of flowers home when what you most want is your partner back?!? Make a donation to the hospital auxiliary or hospice or the XYZ Disease Foundation, as appropriate.

Write a thoughtful card - great. If you don't know what to say, write, "I can't imagine what you're going through. You're in my thoughts." That's much better than what some people say.

Varsity-level response: note the month-, year- and 2-year-anniversaries of their loved one's death. And call them up and say, "I've often thought of you and Xxxxx's tragic passing, but especially at this time. Let me know if you'd like to go out for coffee or a walk sometime." Also, 2 and 3 months out, bring it up, "I keep thinking about his death and wonder how you're holding up." You won't be bringing up any painful thing that they don't already think about every damn hour themselves. Almost everyone else will have moved on and mostly forgotten about it. 2 to 4 months out can be a very lonely time. Simple acknowledgements like that helped me.

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