Savage Love Podcast
Check out the all new Savage Lovecast site!
Got a question for Dan Savage?
Call the Savage Love Podcast at 206-201-2720
or email Dan at email@example.com.
Savage Love Archives
Sluts and Such
Your Sister's Keeper
More from Dan Savage
Elton John Denounces Russian Anti-LGBT Laws During Performance in Moscow
The Homeschool Apostates
SLLOTD: Judgment Day
Holiday Charity Challenge—Day Five! We're Almost to $25K and Seattlish Gets In the Game!
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis vs. Pearl Jam vs. Slog.... vs. Seattlish?
Books by Dan Savage
- American Savage
- It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living
- The Commitment: Love, Sex, Marriage, and My Family
- Things I've Learned from Women Who've Dumped Me
- Skipping Towards Gomorrah
- The Kid: What Happened After My Boyfriend and I Decided to Go Get Pregnant
Want a Second Opinion?
Contact Dan Savage
December 28, 2006
This isn't the sort of question you usually answer, but I hope you will consider it anyway.
I was in a good relationship with a guy, Enis for naming's sake, for three years. About a year ago, Enis asked me if we could have anal sex. I might lose your sympathy here, but I have no interest in anal sex at all. I had a traumatic experience with anal sex that resulted in some permanent damage; I cannot do it without a lot of pain.
I told Enis no and that I was surprised he asked given my past. I offered to do him, if that was what he was looking for. He refused, telling me he wasn't gay. He asked me to reconsider a few more times, but I always told him no. Enis even attempted to just "add it in" while we were having sex once. It fucking hurt, and I flipped out on him. I told him I wasn't going to change my mind, and if he had to have anal sex then he could have it with someone else, giving him an out if it mattered that much to him.
A month ago, we were making love. I was restrained to the bed; we did this all the time. The next thing I knew, he's fingering my anus. I told him to stop, but he wouldn't. He took his time, stretching and lubing. I was screaming and crying for him to stop the whole time. I won't get into how much it hurt, but suffice it to say, I nearly passed out from blood loss as a result of his tearing open old scars. He freaked out when he saw the amount of blood on the bed and called 911. (This was after he'd had an orgasm). I spent a week in the hospital and ended up with 30 stitches to rerepair the damage. I'm still in a lot of pain.
I refused to see him while I was in the hospital. I didn't take his calls. I gave the flowers he sent to other patients. He utterly and completely betrayed my trust. I trusted him with my safety when I let him restrain me, and he took advantage and hurt me. I want nothing to do with him ever again. I've been told he's been on suicide watch at the local hospital several times since the incident. His friends and family tell me he's sorry, that he didn't mean to hurt me, and that I should forgive him. I realize that he may have not intended to hurt me; he did use lubrication, and attempted to open me up a bit first. If he had meant to hurt me then he would have just shoved his way in. But the fact is, I said no.
So, my question to you: Do I forgive him or let him wallow in guilt? I'm not traumatized (emotionally anyway), though of course my heart is broken, and I know I'll move on. I am not pursuing legal action. He and his family paid for my medical bills and other expenses.
Thank you for your time.
No Cute Acronym
Forgive him? Your ex wants you to forgive him? His friends and family are pestering you about forgiving him?
Good fucking God.
Your ex should get down on his knees twice a day and thank his lucky fucking stars that you didn't press charges. He raped you—you know that, right? The word "rape" doesn't appear anywhere in your letter, NCA, which I hope isn't a sign that you see this "incident" as anything other than a full-blown sexual assault. So what if Enis used lube? So what if he took his time? Some rapists use condoms and say "please" and "thank you." They're still rapists.
And, I'm sorry, but why aren't you pressing charges?
On to Enis: So your ex feels awful about this. The poor little douche feels so very, very terrible that he's had to be hospitalized. Why, he's even contemplated suicide. Good. He should feel terrible. Forever. Which is why I hereby forbid you to forgive Enis. Ever. Make the mistake of forgiving this speck of shit, NCA, and 10 minutes later a little voice in the back of his head would start telling him that this rape wasn't that big a deal—after all, the woman he tied up, anally raped, and landed in the hospital didn't press charges... she even forgave him... how bad could it really have been... no reason he shouldn't pull this same stunt with his next girlfriend...
We can't have that, NCA, so Enis's family and friends will just have to go fuck themselves. And if you find yourself wavering, if you find yourself tempted to forgive him, consider this: Enis is attempting to bully you into forgiving him just as he attempted to bully you into anal sex. But since he can't tie you to a bed and fuck forgiveness from you, he's using the threat of suicide to get what he wants. Repeat after me, NCA: Enis had no right to fuck with your ass then, and he has no right to fuck with your head now.
Finally, I'm sorry you felt I might not sympathize with you—a woman brutalized by someone she thought she could trust—due to your lack of interest in anal sex. No one has to "do" anal sex to win my sympathy. I'm a fan, as everyone knows, but anal sex isn't a litmus test. In addition to feeling sympathy for you, NCA, I sincerely hope that you weren't emotionally traumatized by this experience, as you claim. It would be a good idea, however, to see a counselor once or twice just to make sure.
In your response to OBESE, the unfit dude who gets winded after five minutes of the ol' in-and-out, you said there were no exercises he could do to improve his sexual performance. I disagree. First, he needs cardiovascular exercise. Light to start, building in intensity and endurance over time. Any cardio will do: jogging, stair machine,swimming, whatever.
But beyond that, there's a secret core-strengthening exercise many athletes do to improve their performance—and not just on the track. I give you "The Plank." This exercise can put quite a bit of strain on the lower back, so OBESE should shed a few pounds before he attempts it, but here's how it works: Lie on the floor on your stomach. Point your toes directly into the floor. Prop yourself up on your elbows with your elbows directly under your shoulders and with your forearms flat on the ground. Hoist your entire body off the floor so your only points of contact with the floor are your toes, elbows, and forearms. Your body should be flat as a board between your heels and your shoulders. Don't let your back sag, and don't stick your ass up in the air. Hold this position as long as you can, breathing the whole time.
This is a great exercise for strengthening the core of your body: your abs, lower back, and pelvic-floor muscles. The longer you can hold this position, the longer a man can comfortably support himself over a woman while making love in the traditional missionary style without getting exhausted.
Good luck, OBESE, and happy screwing!
Fitness Freak Shag Bunny
Thanks for sharing, FFSB.