Savage Love Podcast
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
Friends in Need
Friend in Need
Making a Move
Get It Together
Quick and Dirty
More from Dan Savage
SL Letters of the Day: Tears For Gears
SL Letter of the Day: The End Is Near
SL Letter of the Day: Why Are All My Straight Boyfriends Fucking Dudes?
Some Words of Comfort for the Hurting Members of Mars Hill
Savage Love: Polyproblema
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
April 15, 2010
I am a mostly straight, 22-year-old woman. I am a pretty GGG kind of gal. So I just started seeing this guy. I haven't known him for long—no serious sexual activity yet. The other night, a few drinks in, we ventured into talking about sex and porn. When I asked what type of porn he watches, he said that he likes videos of "dirty whores, rape scenarios, and gang bangs." Now mind you, I like being treated like a dirty whore. And I love porn. But for some reason, this put me off. I ended up heading home early, and I am apprehensive about seeing him again.
Was my reaction legit? I've indulged other partners in bondage, BDSM, power games, and so on (which I am very much into). So why am I judging this nice, good-looking guy as a creep?
Turned Off And Displeased
First, TOAD, I want to praise you for trusting your gut and getting out of there. Everyone should follow your example: When someone is making you uncomfortable, folks, emulate TOAD—make your excuses and bolt. On to your question...
You've liked being treated like a dirty whore and you've done BDSM with other guys, so why are you judging this particular guy?
Someone who's turned on by extreme power games—hardcore BDSM, degradation, verbal abuse, role-play scenarios, sexist stereotypes—has to demonstrate that he (or she) is not just extremely trustworthy, TOAD, but extremely sensible. And when this guy shared his interest in some pretty extreme kinks so early in the relationship ("haven't known him for long"), your gut rightly told you that this "nice, good-looking guy" wasn't someone with whom you would feel safe.
You simply didn't know him well enough to say to yourself, "Hey, that's some hardcore shit there—but he's proved himself to be a good person and I would feel safe doing this stuff with him." And not only didn't you know him well enough to come to that conclusion, he should've known that you didn't know him well enough to come to that conclusion.
By sharing his kinks too soon, TOAD, this seemingly nice guy demonstrated poor judgment and worse impulse control. And rock-solid judgment and gold-plated impulse control are the first and second things we should look for in someone whose sexual interests are way the fuck out there.
I don't think he should've lied, TOAD, but he should've had the common sense to kick the conversation down the road or downplay without misrepresenting, i.e., instead of saying, "I'm into dirty whores, rape scenarios, and gang bangs," he could have said, "I'm into experienced business women, some intense role-play scenarios, and I'm intrigued by group sex scenes with significant gender imbalances." Then, after he had proved himself to be a decent, trustworthy guy with rock-solid judgment and gold-plated impulse control, he could've given you a clearer picture of his kinks without creeping you out.
I'm not saying that he's a creep or an abuser—or that he's not. Maybe he's just young and inexperienced and hasn't learned how to talk about his creepy kinks without creeping people out, TOAD, or maybe the booze caused him to blurt out something he usually rolls out with more finesse. It's up to you whether you give him a second chance—but make the next date a dry one, and if he creeps you out, trust that gut of yours, make your excuses, and bolt.
I'm in my 30s, male, married, and bisexual. I have a problem with my wife. She does not accept my bisexuality as "real" since I never took it in the ass. Furthermore, she gets embarrassed when we are with our gay friends and tales of my man-on-man experiences come up. She wants me not to talk about it at all. I'm not hitting on anyone, or contemplating cheating on her with a man, or anything, just talking about the past—or agreeing with her when she says Clive Owen is totally hot.
Am I wrong to think that she is being kind of an asshole? Or am I just being selfish in not soothing her faithfulness fears?
Likes Men But Loves Wife
Hm... your wife refuses to believe that you're bisexual because you never got around to taking it in the ass. There's a simple way to solve that problem, LMBLW: Take it in the ass a couple dozen times and present your wife with a lovely boxed set of commemorative DVDs.
That would mean cheating on her, though, something you're not interested in doing and something she fears. I suppose you could point out that women with straight husbands aren't exactly guaranteed an adultery-free ride. Sandra Bullock, Jenny Sanford, and Elin Nordegren all married 100 percent heterosexual men—at least so far as we know at press time—and despite their husbands' failure to take it in the ass (no man's perfect), all three women wound up on the cover of In Touch, Us, and People.
But, while I think your wife is being a bit of an asshole by not accepting your bisexuality, LMBLW, regaling gay pals with tales of your man-on-man experiences could annoy a spouse who was comfortable with your sexuality.
As a "not-stereotypical-looking" lesbian attracted to other "not-stereotypical-looking" lesbians, I wish EVERY "single and looking" lesbian wore something that said so—like the lesbian reader last week who was thinking about going out in a "Single. Lesbian. Interested?" T-shirt. When I do go out to the one lesbian bar in my city, people look at me with that "What are you doing in OUR bar?" stare.
Show Me Your Status
There are nearly twice as many gay-identified men out there as there are lesbian-identified women. This fact alone is all the proof we need that homosexuality isn't a choice. Considering what shits straight men can be—judging from my mail—surely more women would choose homosexuality if they could.
Anyway, it seems to me that what single lesbians need—in addition to dyke bars, internet personal ads, women's softball leagues, and cat-food aisles in grocery stores (man, those lesbian/cat jokes never get old)—is a secret sign. I'm thinking something subtle, SMYS, not because I'm pro-closet, but because I'm pro-tasteful. Message T-shirts? Never tasteful. And "Nobody Knows My Girlfriend Is a Lesbian" T-shirts are very 1995 (and highly unlikely to get a single girl a date).
Instead, maybe all lesbians everywhere should start wearing a button. No words, just a solid color, something small and tasteful that could be pinned to the strap of a purse (popular with "not-stereotypical-looking" lesbians), the lapel of a jacket, or the belt loop on a pair of jeans. Thinking outside the lavender/pink/purple box, I think the button should be green—green for "go," green as in "Go ahead and hit on me, ladies. I'm a lesbian."
I will be answering love and sex questions in Questionland on April 22. Visit thestranger.com/questionland to ask me questions and see my answers.