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May 4, 2000
My husband and I are passionately in love. Our sex life is truly amazing. Our problem: As far as I'm concerned, he is obsessive about collecting sexual material. He continually purchases all kinds of porno magazines. He keeps a photo album of us (which he claims he looks at most frequently), and also has a collection of pussy/cocks/tits videos. When he isn't looking at porn, he's reading books about different sexual positions, or how to enhance orgasms, and he keeps talking about going on a nudist vacation somewhere (I have no problem with that; I love to be naked).
I am lucky to be with him in mid-life, because so many of my girlfriends have unsatisfying sex lives. I am grateful for what we have together. He tells me it's normal for men to want visuals, but when is it considered too much or obsessive? I am always "discovering" more porn, underneath the bed or tucked into drawers or hidden on a shelf. How do we reach a comfortable place together about this? Part of the problem is that he isn't completely honest about the size of his "collection." Are most men?
How Much Is Too Much?
Any time I suggest that men and women are even slightly different sexually, the outraged letters pour in. Men and women are exactly the same, my testy readers inform me, except, of course, for those countless ways in which women are better. So I'm not going to tell you that (most) men respond to visual stimulation, and that it's normal for (most) men to need (or want) visuals. But isn't it odd that there are, oh, seven or eight thousand periodicals for men featuring photos of naked women (Playboy, Penthouse, Hustler, GQ), and only one for women featuring naked men? (It's called Playgirl, and you're likelier to find a copy in a gay man's apartment than in a straight woman's.)
As for your husband, his behavior does sound a tad obsessive, but you sound more concerned about what's normal than about any negative impact his obsessive collecting is having on your sex life or your relationship. As sex problems go, this is pretty piddling. Yes, he's obsessive, but is his obsession harming your relationship? Not from the sound of things. As for the dishonesty, the most likely reason he isn't completely honest about the size collection ("Look, honey, I got a new tit-fucking magazine!") is that you've given him the impression that his collection bothers you. He probably hides the size of his collection from you to protect himself from your disapproval.
There is a better way. Since he'll never stop collecting, no matter how big of a stink you raise, you'd do well to craft a compromise that allows him to collect, but spares you from running across porn every time you open a drawer. Porn is a fine thing, but since you don't want to see it all the time, he needs to respect your feelings and not booby-trap (if you'll pardon the expression) the whole house. My proposed solution: If you have a spare bedroom, or a den, or an attic, put a lock on the door and make it his "special" room. Collecting porn is his hobby, and it's time he had a special place to store his collection. Your end of the bargain? Promise him that if he can keep his collection in his room, you won't criticize its size or scrutinize its contents, and stay the hell out of his room.
I'm a 20-year-old female. I've been noticing for some time that during and after exercise (most often running) I get this discharge in my underwear which looks and feels like the same natural lubricant that comes during sex. There's a good deal of it. I'm not "turned on" by exercise, nor do I normally notice anyone sexually appealing during my exercising. Is this normal?
According to Kristina Chamberlain at the Chicago Women's Health Center, that discharge dropping into your drawers when you're out running is nothing to worry about. "Most likely, the discharge she is noticing is normal discharge that has been in her vagina all along," says Kristina, "but running and gravity are making the discharge come down into her underwear where she notices it. If she's not turned on, it probably isn't exactly the same as the arousal fluid she produces when sexually excited, unless her shorts or jogging pants rub against her clitoris while jogging."
Ten years ago I fell for a girl, but didn't have the confidence to hit on her. Now we are pretty much best friends, and I'm petrified of raising the subject. Should I tell her I want to be romantic? WHAT SHOULD I DO? Oh, I live with her ex-boyfriend, who is still infatuated with her.
What's the worst that could happen? You hit on her; she says no; eventually you both get over it. If you weren't such a chickenshit, you would be anxious to risk rejection on the off-chance that she'll say yes. As for your roommate, he had his chance, blew it, and whether he likes it or not, his ex-girlfriend is in play.
I have recently acquired a new boyfriend with the most amazingly wonderful ability. He comes, and stays hard. He comes again, and again, and again, and again, and still stays hard. I am starting to wonder if this is too good to be true. I am a relatively experienced woman and I have never encountered anything like this -- he is ALWAYS hard. He is still in his sexual peak, but come on! Could this be a medical condition?
A friend recently slept with a man who shares your boyfriend's superpower, a rare ability to stay hard and come again and again. At first I doubted my friend's story, but now that I've seen the home video, I'm a believer. Is it a medical condition? No, it's a rare talent. Enjoy.
I've got a problem that's probably none of my business, but a friend of mine named Phil is dating another friend named Mary. Mary hasn't had the best track record with men, and has low self-esteem. She's real happy about her relationship with Phil, except for one thing: Phil refuses to tell anyone about it, and won't let her tell anyone. This makes her feel bad, and pisses me off. I'd like to confront him, but then he would know that she told me, and they would get into a fight that may or may not lead to a breakup. I don't want that over my head! What should I do?
You should probably mind your own business, but... what Phil is doing to Mary stinks like a three-day floater. MYOB is usually good advice, but there are times when someone -- anyone -- has to flush the floater, even if it's not their business that's making the bathroom stink. Are you with me? Tell Phil you know what's going on, tell him he's treating Mary like crap, and encourage Mary to tell everyone about the relationship. If Phil dumps Mary as a result, well, she's better off alone than with a piece of shit.