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March 16, 2011

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I am a 36-year-old straight man, blissfully married to my 34-year-old soul mate. We have explored and enjoyed each other for a decade now, and we recently started exploring BDSM and D/s fantasies. Everything was going great sexually—until last night. Two years ago, my wife expressed an interest in an MMF three-way, where I was the Dom guiding the action between all three of us. I planned this event, play by play, reviewing in my mind everything that was to take place. There were many conversations about expectations, stipulations, etc. All bases covered, I went into the event mentally prepared and gleefully excited. Magic happened for about two hours—passion, love, and dirty, dirty sex. Almost every kinky kind was being had and enjoyed, save vaginal intercourse.

Then my wife was vaginally penetrated by our friend.

It was as if all the air in the room was sucked out through my soul. I instantly lost my bone, gone forever (I thought), and I felt angry and nauseated. I had to stop the scene. My friend and my wife instantly tended to me during my breakdown. The sorrow of disappointing my wife hurts the most, even though she calls me brave for this. I don't feel brave. I feel confused. I had planned how everything was going to happen. I even gave the fucking command (literally) for my friend to enter my wife. Crushing emotional pain followed.

In the morning, my wife woke me and made love to me, tenderly and healingly. So at least the dick works. I am still beset by all manner of doubts and insecurities. Is my dick big enough? Am I good enough for her sexually?

I feel scared and trapped in a land that I have never visited before, a land called Insecurity.

Heartbroken Dom

You're clearly in pain, and I want to be sensitive to your pain... but... your overwrought prose style has me wondering if you're enjoying this drama a bit. Maybe that's just the way you talk—maybe you always sound like a Brontë sister after a three-day bender—but there's a self-dramatizing, self-aggrandizing tone to your e-mail that gives me pause.

I'm not saying that your distress is an act or your pain isn't sincerely felt, HD, but your meltdown effectively ended a scene in which all attention was focused on your wife and started a new scene in which all attention was focused on you. As you wander the heaths of Insecurity, I'd encourage you to examine your own subconscious for evidence of drama queendom.

That said, HD, sometimes three-way reality is a lot more emotionally charged and challenging than three-way fantasy. Let your experience be a lesson for others: If there's a sex act—say, vaginal intercourse—that holds huge symbolic importance for you or your partner, it might be best to take that act off the menu. Take things slow the first, second, and third time, invite your guest star to participate in some lower-stake/lower-significance sex acts, but reserve the main event for yourself.

Perhaps you didn't realize how shattering it would be to watch this man bone your wife until the moment that he—at your command—boned your wife. Like they say: Hindsight/sex-advice columnists is/are 20/20/a bitch.

How do you get past this, HD? Only the passage of time will lead you out of Insecurity. You'll come to believe that, yes, you are good enough for the wife sexually because you're going to keep having great sex. You'll come to believe that she's content with you when you close your relationship and she isn't chomping at the bit to fuck other guys.

I have a rent-boy etiquette question. Recently, a client of mine, who lives in another state, invited me to join him at a resort where he was meeting up with friends. This included a nice-looking man who lives near me, whom I will call "Three." My client has been lusting after Three for a long time, and my job was to act as bait to lure Three into a three-way with my client and me. Things went really well, and the desired three-way happened on Saturday night and again on Sunday morning.

Here is the problem: I don't think my client informed Three that I was there in a professional capacity. So from Three's perspective, I sought him out, flirted shamelessly, and had really hot sex with him—twice. So it would be pretty jarring to him that, the very next day, I'm suddenly not interested in him. It goes against whore protocol to "out" a client, and I suspect my client did not want Three to know I am a rent boy because that might have been a deal breaker.

I would feel pretty stupid if I thought a man was really into me, only to later find out he was just doing his job. Three's feelings are bound to be bruised. I don't know what to do. I want to be respectful of my client's confidence, but I don't feel comfortable tossing Three aside like a used tissue. There is a real possibility that I will be seeing him in the future, since we move in similar circles or the next time my client comes to town. Is this my client's faux pas, or is there some rent-boy protocol I should have followed?

Awkwardly Socializing Soon

If Three didn't know you were a rent boy, ASS, and that you were being used as bait, then Three's consent was obtained under false pretenses. That's not okay. And as you knew going in that you were being used as bait—that it was your "job" to get Three into bed—you were an active participant in this deception.

You're a rent boy, ASS, not a rent bot—you don't have to do everything a client asks. You could have agreed to flirt with Three, but you should have insisted to your client that your employment status be revealed to Three at some point between flirtation and fellatio.

Considering the circumstances, ASS, I think you can be released from the bonds of strict client confidentiality on this occasion. If you run into Three, and he seems hurt or confused, let him down gently. Tell him he's an attractive guy, tell him you enjoyed the hell out of those three-ways—then tell him you were on a job and you're sorry for not telling him sooner, i.e., for not telling him that weekend, before anything happened.

I'm a straight girl who made a resolution to seek out a couple for a three-way. With my boyfriend's full support—he's the kind of unicorn guy who thinks three's a crowd—I perused options online.

One gentleman caught my eye because he proclaimed on his OkCupid profile "Dan Savage is my rabbi," he described himself as "GGG," and his lady friend was also a Savage lover.

We met up last night, and it was a beautiful, well-orchestrated event. Boundaries and excitements had been discussed beforehand, and three fun, sexy, fit twentysomethings had awesome sex. It was a perfect girl-girl-guy three-way. Great communication up front, great communication during, great communication after.

Thanks, Dan! Thanks for your column and your positive impact on the sex lives of people around the world.

Satisfied Girl

My pleasure, SG, and thanks for sharing!

Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at


Comments (162) RSS

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The way HD talked about planning every move (and reaction?)of the 3-way just reeks of insecurity (as every controlling person exudes, in my experience); all that planning and then something unexpected happens... oops! Maybe he and his wife could do a switch in the D/s roles for a session and see how that works out. All I know is, whenever I try to control my life, it comes back and bites me in the ass (so to speak)... the need to control everything comes from fear. Letting go of all control as a sub to your wife once or twice could be enlightening!
Posted by suzyq on March 15, 2011 at 6:22 PM · Report this
..."Dan Savage is my rabbi"...

Get to it, Photoshoppers! And send me a t-shirt.
Posted by jaspgh on March 15, 2011 at 6:29 PM · Report this
creepy little girl 3
I've been involved in group situations where everything up to intercourse is fine, but something about the sight of my partner having full-on straight/hetero intercourse with another person freaks me the fuck out. It's normal, and it's ok to stop.

Being a melodramatic bitch isn't ok.
Posted by creepy little girl on March 15, 2011 at 7:09 PM · Report this
saxfanatic 4
HD really should have storyboarded everything first. I hear that's what the Coen brothers do.
Posted by saxfanatic on March 15, 2011 at 7:22 PM · Report this
Why does it matter that ASS is a rent boy? Three wasn't paying, and he wasn't lied to about anything of substance. Just be as friendly as you would otherwise be, ASS, the next time you see him. If he brings up the other night's sex, you can just agree that was a fun time, without committing to more. Why does someone get to act "hurt or confused" just because a one-time sex partner is not interested in another go at it?
Posted by EricaP on March 15, 2011 at 7:29 PM · Report this
I Hate Screen Names 6
@5: That's a good point. Fucking someone you just met does not imply a commitment to more fucking in the future.

Random sex is random.
Posted by I Hate Screen Names on March 15, 2011 at 7:41 PM · Report this
whoops, two-time. But still. What happens at the resort, stays at the resort.
Posted by EricaP on March 15, 2011 at 7:51 PM · Report this
ASS wants to come clean with Three because he doesn't want to be slick with someone with whom his relationship isn't his first priority. That's why I say the persistent principle in Dan's advice seems to be that you can be slick in your relationship if it's your first priority, you can make your relationship something other than your first priority if you aren't slick in it, but you can't be slick in a relationship that isn't your first priority.
Posted by Mike Leung on March 15, 2011 at 7:53 PM · Report this
Omg, I can't believe I'm just No. 7. And I can't believe I'm gonna grammar-pick the amazing Dan Savage -- and I'm sure I'll get skewered for it -- but ... In Dan's first response, the phrase is actually "champing at the bit," not chomping. It's what horses do when they are anxious or excited, and "chomping" is a common misuse of the phrase.

That said, that one incorrect little vowel is about the only thing I have ever found wrong with any of Dan's column.
Posted by squirrel12 on March 15, 2011 at 7:57 PM · Report this
Heartbroken Dom sounds like a fake letter to me - but the writing style made me laugh.
Posted by Jay2356 on March 15, 2011 at 8:28 PM · Report this
11 Comment Pulled (Spam) Comment Policy
ASS's client sounds like a jerk, but Three must have known something was going on and he fell for it, so there is blame to go all around.

If it ever comes up where Three comes sniffing around for more sex, ASS should just tell Three that he is cockblocked or something. Tell him he thinks fooking (typo, but it works) around again with Three behind the (unbeknownst) client's back would make things too tricky (unintended pun, I'm on a roll!) with the mutual friend/client.
Posted by jussmbdy on March 15, 2011 at 9:13 PM · Report this
Buttercup 13
"Unicorn guy?" Is that something the (20-something year-old) kids are saying these days? 'Cause I like it.
Posted by Buttercup on March 15, 2011 at 9:15 PM · Report this
Um. Before I get jumped on for the very thing I jumped on Dan for, I want to add an "s" to the last word in my comment. :)
Posted by squirrel12 on March 15, 2011 at 9:21 PM · Report this
Can we all please just stop with the candy coated euphemisms (rent boy, escort, companion, luggage lifter, etc) and just call these whores what they are....whores.

If you chose to make your living that way, I couldn't possibly care less as long as you don't do it in the street and scare the horses. But please don't posit yourself as something you're not. You're not good conversation. You're not good company. You don't move equally as well from a leather jock strap to a tux.

I am so sick of people bringing these mental midgets to dinner or otherwise social settings and expecting the rest of us to ignore the elephant in the room. Mainly, that he's there only because you're paying him to be.

How in the world can someone who has a "normal" (for lack of a better word) job and relationships be expected to have anything in common or grounds for conversation with these jokes. I'm sick of it. Everyone that I know who has had to suffer one of these twits is sick of it.

And from this letter, both the whore and the john sound like complete and total creeps. The day after, when he's betrayed someone's trust in one of the worst ways possible, he develops an attack of conscious. How fucking convenient.

Hopefully Three didn't catch something from this shore ditch that can't be treated.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 15, 2011 at 9:23 PM · Report this
Sea Otter 16
Word usage nazi @9: As a fellow word usage nazi, I must beg to differ. "Chomping" is just fine too. It's a matter of dialect. "Champing" and "chomping" are both onomatopoeic and mean the same thing.
Posted by Sea Otter on March 15, 2011 at 9:25 PM · Report this
HD - sorry, but no sympathy here. You and your wife had something really good, but then you decided that no matter how good it was, it wasn't good enough. You basically got greedy and overreached, and now you can't un-ring the bell and go back to the way things were. That's what happens when you play grown-up games: sometimes they take us by surprise and show us that we don't know ourselves as well as we thought. You literally made your own bed, so now lie in it and stop complaining.
Posted by Sancho on March 15, 2011 at 9:36 PM · Report this
@15 I call sex workers whatever they want to be called. And I have enjoyed having dinner with the ones I have met, at least as much as I enjoy dinner with the lawyers I dine with more frequently. That's not a high bar to pass, of course.
Posted by EricaP on March 15, 2011 at 9:40 PM · Report this
fannerz 19
@15: Anyone can have something in common with anyone else, regardless of how either party makes their living. Does getting paid to fuck preclude good taste in music or art or a genuinely kind personality or sense of humour? No. But whatever the hell you do apparently does.
Posted by fannerz on March 15, 2011 at 9:57 PM · Report this
Posted by Makenna on March 15, 2011 at 10:28 PM · Report this
@15: When friends bring sex workers to important social events and expect you to make awkward conversation, that's a reflection on your friends, not sex workers in general. Do not hate on the sex workers who are just doing their job. Hate on the "friends" who have the poor taste to subject sex workers to awkward conversations with stuck-up trolls like you.

@10: Heart-broken Dom in not a fake letter. Sad to say, I have Dom friends who talk just like that :)
Posted by Magdalene on March 15, 2011 at 10:28 PM · Report this
p.s. I'd like a 'Dan Savage is my rabbi' t-shirt.
Posted by Makenna on March 15, 2011 at 10:29 PM · Report this
I Hate Screen Names 23
@15: Actually, the whores/rent boys/escorts/etc. I've met are pretty interesting people. When your job is to be interesting, it's unsurprising that you become good at it. My sense is that the ones you meet are keen to your overwhelming sense of moral superiority, and don't waste their time trying to charm you.

You want mental midgets? Try going to any function that involves inherited wealth. Those fuckers not only don't know shit, but they're too stupid to know that they don't know shit. When everyone around you is kissing your ass, you don't realize that you're a twit.
Posted by I Hate Screen Names on March 15, 2011 at 10:40 PM · Report this
I figured that my comment would bring on a shit storm of criticism, and I'm prepared for that. But until you've been forced by work politics to have dinner and interact with people who should aspire to vapid, you're really in no position to criticize.

Personally I believe in the sovereignty of the individual and I think prostitution should be legal. But let's be honest. As a rule, they're not the "hooker with a heart" that you see in movies, or the educated socially graceful geisha of times past. If you seek the company of a "sex worker" (is that better?) good for you both, but just keep it behind closed doors.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 15, 2011 at 10:43 PM · Report this
@ 15, I think what we're sick of is airheads. sex workers aren't necessarily airheads. I actually find it''s hair extensions and constant gum chewing that are usually the better indicators of intolerable people.
Posted by Caralain on March 15, 2011 at 10:50 PM · Report this
TheMisanthrope 26
@1 Penetration WAS planned. He was just freaked out a bit. Whatever. He wasn't built for 3-ways. He needs to get over it.

But, I have this amusing image in my head of his wife petting him saying he was a brave a parent to their kid getting a shot from the doctor.

@15 Most idiotic comment ever. OK, not really...but, it was truly pointlessly self-aggrandizing to the point that nobody should want to meet you.
Posted by TheMisanthrope on March 15, 2011 at 11:02 PM · Report this
Arsfrisco 27
@15 Your mistake, of course, is to generalize - painting a whole category of people with the same brush. I suspect you know better and that you're yanking this thread. But since I started, I'll finish: I used to be a hooker. I've been paid to piss on people and masturbate in public. I also have a college degree and have had other careers. I have enjoyed conversations with a Senator, a 4-star General, and world-famous conductor. I once rode in an ambulance to the hospital with a complete stranger because she was scared and had nobody to comfort her. I have had my letters published in the New Yorker and the New York Times. I have spent days in the museums in Paris, Madrid, Florence, and Amsterdam. I have spent nights in jail for protesting against the government. I'm neither a genius nor a neurosurgeon. I'm just a human being with a point of view. And I really enjoyed being a hooker.
Posted by Arsfrisco on March 15, 2011 at 11:09 PM · Report this
Geez, you all are being so effing hard on HD. Can't a twentieth century dude express fear and anxiety at this point? So maybe he's got some insecurity issues. So maybe his trio should have started smaller, and worked their way up to full intercourse.

But have some sympathy for the guy. You can plan your actions and even the actions of consenting others but you can't plan your own reactions, especially your own emotional reactions. I'm sure we all know the feeling of "the air being sucked out of the room through your soul," like when you see your ex, whom you're still trying to get over, with their new lover.

What I would say to HD is to be eternally grateful that your friend and especially your wife were so sensitive to your needs during this fiasco. Your wife knew that you needed to feel sexually adequate so she made love to you the next morning. So thank her by trying again, with baby steps.
Posted by cmanz3 on March 15, 2011 at 11:39 PM · Report this
Based on all the words like "many conversations," "expectations," "stipulations," "mentally prepared," et cetera, I'm guessing that HD was never really into the idea of involving another man in his wife's sex life in the first place. Rather, he got talked into it over the course of the last two years, and all those "stipulations" were around making him "comfortable" (interesting that that particular word was absent) with something he didn't want. Chances are pretty good that the idea was sold to him under the banner of being the Dom, to persuade him that he would at least be in full control -- hell, it would be happening at his command, so he could hardly claim it was against his will. Likewise his wife calling him "brave" tells me he probably had reservations the whoe time, and everybody knew it. (@26: that was just mean.)

Wonder of wonders, when it actually happened, he couldn't deal with watching it happen. Gee, who could have predicted?

First, the lesson: don't agree to something that you are deeply uncomfortable with. GGG does not translate to violating your own boundaries for the sake of the other person. Push the envelope, yes; rip it in pieces and toss it in the trash, no. If anything, if the last two years played out the way I'm guessing, his wife should have concluded that his feelings on this subject indicated a likely unhappy ending, and not pursued it. Instead, he's had two years of wondering "Why does she want this so much? Why am I not enough?" and the act itself merely confirmed every one of his fears.

Posted by avast2006 on March 16, 2011 at 12:16 AM · Report this
@5: You really don't see any difference between thinking you're fucking someone based on your own merits and fucking a professional sex worker because they're being paid?
Posted by Nice on March 16, 2011 at 12:19 AM · Report this
Seattle just seems weirder and weirder every time I visit this site.
Posted by amandariffic on March 16, 2011 at 12:21 AM · Report this
I'm not sure what to suggest going forward. I don't see those insecurities going away meekly and gently of their own accord at this point, whether or not they close the relationship back down.

I'm inclined to say that his wife owes him a MFF with another woman friend who displays at least as much interest in fucking him as his wife displays in fucking someone else.

(I have to admit, part of me wants to call the letter a fake, purely on the detail about not being big enough. Isn't that a classic cuckold fantasy fetish detail?)
Posted by avast2006 on March 16, 2011 at 12:31 AM · Report this
Ok, I give up. What's a unicorn guy?
Posted by yequalsy on March 16, 2011 at 6:21 AM · Report this
i'm super glad dan called HD out on the super DRAMA. sounds more like a whiny 18 year old boy rather than a 36 year old man.
Posted by JELEDU on March 16, 2011 at 6:24 AM · Report this
at 33, i wanted to know that, too--thanks for asking
Posted by JELEDU on March 16, 2011 at 6:26 AM · Report this
i'm guessing "unicorn guy" means he's such a rare type that most people don't believe he exists.

not to be confused with "Unicron guy", a guy whose drama and issues literally consume your entire world.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 6:48 AM · Report this
Now I know what I need to add to my OkCupid keywords...
Posted by knkycva on March 16, 2011 at 6:54 AM · Report this
shw3nn 38
@24 I've been forced by work politics to have dinner and interact with people who should aspire to vapid. I'm talking about the sort of people who make sure you know they are global travelers and go to the sort of parties you wear tuxedos to.

To me, the very definition of a vapid person is someone who can't figure out how to have an interesting conversation with a sex worker. That's just how I define that term.

We all have people we find insufferably boring. You are on a lot of lists yourself. Do not be deluded.
Posted by shw3nn on March 16, 2011 at 7:29 AM · Report this
I think in this context, "Unicorn Guy" was used ironically as the male who was not interested in a MFF 3-way.
Posted by Krunch on March 16, 2011 at 7:40 AM · Report this
@38 yes, we're all on lists. Most of which we didn't even do anything to get ourselves put onto.
Posted by mtiffany71 on March 16, 2011 at 7:46 AM · Report this
@38: "To me, the very definition of a vapid person is someone who can't figure out how to have an interesting conversation with a sex worker."

I think I'm in love.
Posted by mtiffany71 on March 16, 2011 at 7:52 AM · Report this
BigThickDk 42
ASS as a Rent-Boy you were contracted to lure and bait Three into the threesome with your Client. I only see that Full Disclosure after the fact is what would ease your conscience of guilt or remorse that you may feel, having deceived Three. It's either that or you would prefer that any future encounters that you may have with Three requires some type of Remuneration on his part as you've established that you are a Rent-Boy and that when you've received payment to play you don't ever play in the future without pay.

I often wonder about Sex-Worker's Protocol. Does the fact that you are getting paid give you and erection? Does sexual excitement only occur when you know that you are getting paid? If the sex is good enough do you consider freebies for any future sexual encounters? Can your economic needs be tossed aside by finding someone to aid in your emotional comfort? Is there ever a "Pretty Woman" Moment when the guy that you are with becomes your "Prince Charming"? Do you hold to strict categories for those who pay to play and those who are free or "freebie-d" and never betwixt the two shall meet? I don't seem to understand at all because obviously there is sexual excitement and some type of sexual attraction or chemistry to one another. So the fact that the first and second sexual encounters had payment; one can only preclude that all future encounter must be paid for?

I think that you should do what you were contracted to do and keep your mouth shout! Be a good little Rent-boy and keep silent after all you don't want to ruin any future potential clients that would hear that you were Loose with you tongue and not in a good way!
Posted by BigThickDk on March 16, 2011 at 7:57 AM · Report this
So, letter number one essentially boils down to "I freaked out when I saw my friend fucking my wife."

Contrary to the people here who act like you have a problem, your reaction makes you like 99.9% of the straight, married guys out there. Maybe, just maybe, you got into something that your wife wanted, but you didn't?

If you don't want your wife fucking your friends, or if you merely don't want to see it, don't pretend you do. Tell her you are not into whatever it is you are not into.
Posted by Staight Guy like 99.9% of the others on March 16, 2011 at 7:57 AM · Report this
HD is such an entertaining letter writer that in part one wants to pat him on the head and lead him gently to the Kiddie Pool. Then again, it might be great fun to see how he'd be received by an anti-patriarchy set.

But mainly I wonder about the friend. What sort of person would be able to get through agreeing to that overproduced scene and being dominated and directed by HD for more than ten minutes without yielding to an irresistible urge to tie and gag HD and then place him in the corner in order to get on with the matter at hand without further blathering?

I don't wish the couple ill, but, unless the friend is as much a piece of work as HD, the friend and the wife seem much the better match. It would be helpful to know if the wife would call HD her soulmate; I can't get a convincing picture of HD's soulmate having brought the threesome about in the first place.
Posted by vennominon on March 16, 2011 at 8:04 AM · Report this
shw3nn 45
41 :D
Posted by shw3nn on March 16, 2011 at 8:24 AM · Report this
Maybe I should have been more clear. I wasn't saying that escorts (I'll use the kindest term) aren't good people and aren't worth knowing. Everyone is worth knowing.

When they're off the clock.

I"m sure that @27 could probably talk circles around me regarding many topics.

@38 might be right. There might be people who find me a bore. No worries. No one is for everyone. It's not that I'm incapable of finding some common ground for discussion with nearly anyone. I just choose not to. My right. Just like escorts can chose to not speak with me if I'm unwilling to open my wallet.

I do find it interesting that so many people are so eager to jump down my throat for expressing an opinion. I didn't criticize a characteristic that's beyond someone's control. I'm sure there are people who are in this line of work because they simply feel they have no other choice. But every one that I've ever met did it because of pretty shallow, vapid and lazy reasons. And if you're going to be a hooker, then you better be prepared to have people think of you as such.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 16, 2011 at 8:27 AM · Report this
"sounds more like a whiny 18 year old boy rather than a 36 year old man."

Yeah, because if he doesn't behave as you prefer, his manhood is void, right?

God, I hate that sort of name-calling: A woman likes sex? She is not a woman, she is a WHORE! A man acts in ways I don't like? He is not a man, he is a BOY! You don't agree with politician X? You are not a decent person, you are a nazi/socialist/bee-keeper/etc!

Stop denying people's basic human status as a man or woman just because they don't toe your utterly immaterial, wholly subjective lines.
Posted by Yeah, talking to you, 38! on March 16, 2011 at 8:36 AM · Report this
Garzan of the Apes 48
@36 Thanks for the Transformers reference!
Posted by Garzan of the Apes on March 16, 2011 at 8:39 AM · Report this
@30, people get into bed together for a million million reasons. Once I'm in bed with someone, I enjoy myself and try to show the person a good time, regardless of who is paying whom in what kind of currency.

If I have a gourmet dinner at a friend's house cooked by a chef, I don't care if the chef did it for friendship or for money. I respect their craft and enjoy myself.

Posted by EricaP on March 16, 2011 at 8:53 AM · Report this
Global Traveller....I know you retracted...but I had to chime in here as another woman with a "past". Although you would never know it know (just a bit of suburbia these days, along with my two, yes count them TWO graduate degrees), I used to do sex work as well in my youth.

But, I assure you, with a client, I doubt you would have even been able to spot me as such. I blended.

Perhaps I was your hooker (or S/M worker, lol) with a heart of gold? Or very intelligent, well educated one at least, able to converse on many a topic....and yes, I will agree with the above poster...I would bet sex workers can tell some *amazing* stories....much more so then the typical "how big is your bankroll" bragging of corporate yawners.
Posted by badgirl on March 16, 2011 at 9:03 AM · Report this
@16 I don't think nazi means what you think it means.
Posted by beccoid on March 16, 2011 at 9:05 AM · Report this

thanks for noticing. somehow I doubt "Unicron Guy" will find its way into the Savage Vernacular. unless there are way more fellow nerds here than I realized.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 9:20 AM · Report this
@ SG

I hate you. I hate your perfect three way. I hate Dan Savage.

You all go to hell and you die.

Posted by stormcrow on March 16, 2011 at 9:22 AM · Report this
Global Traveller, you know who you sound like? You sound like this: "I've met faggots before, and they're disgusting perverts, obsessed with sex, all the them. Sure, they can have their own sex lives, I wouldn't make what they do illegal, but all of them, and I've met them, are sleazy deviants."

Except, just as the bigot above has, unbeknownst to himself, met many, many gay people (has socialized with them, eaten with them, and perhaps even fucked them!), you too have met many sex workers -- and never realized it.

And I feel sorry for the vapid, silly people you have met whom you have classified in your head as "sex workers".
Posted by Hairhead on March 16, 2011 at 9:42 AM · Report this
HD is a drama queen, but it is a cautionary tale. For whatever reason, couples need to test their other partner's love. HD consciously or subconsciously wanted his wife to draw the line, and this whole thing was set up in his head to be a test: "If she loves me, she won't fuck this guy even if I give her my permission." She failed this test that he created for her; and it was an unfair test on every level. Nobody was blissfully married in this scenario. HD was still waiting for his wife to prove her love by passing some test--refusing the offer of another man's throbbing cock. For all I know, the wife was testing HD, "he won't agree to a three way if he really loves me." These are dangerous tests. And it was a fail on every level.
Posted by koplaw on March 16, 2011 at 10:11 AM · Report this
"Moral Superiority"?. Hardly. I'm one of the "faggots" to whom @54 is referring

"Inherited wealth"? I work my ass off every day as I have since I was in junior high school, and I help take care of my parents and niece.

Maybe I've never had the good fortune to meet someone engaged in this line of work that was as fascinating and charming and intelligent, etc as the rest of you apparently have. Good for you, and my loss. But I'm tired of going to work every day, paying taxes, donating to charity, and all the things that a guy from a good middle class family does to try to be a productive member of society does and then having to listen to "one of these" dangle their latest bauble in all the working stiff's (pardon the pun) faces when all they did was spread their legs.

As liberal as I am it's simply a case of NIMBY, and I'd be willing to wager that most people would feel the same. How many of you really want to live next to a whore house? If you're not willing to have them standing on your street corner and picking up johns, then we at least share the same sentiments. It's simply a matter of degree, IMHO.

To those of you out there that "blend in" and are "classy and educated" (the parenthesis are not intended as sarcasm, btw) then I'm truly sorry if I offended you. LIke one poster said, I would never have known. You don't owe me or anyone else any effort to be accepted.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 16, 2011 at 10:20 AM · Report this
shw3nn 57
46 "I'm sure there are people who are in this line of work because they simply feel they have no other choice. But every one that I've ever met did it because of pretty shallow, vapid and lazy reasons."

I'm sorry but I am still unsure as to where you think you get off....

You can only respect prostitutes who do it for whatever you deem to be the *right* reasons? Do you judge everybody you meet on the quality of their reasons for choosing the career they are in?

I will go in the other direction. I respect people who sacrifice their earning potential in order to work for the greater good. Something tells you're not exactly doing appendectomies for Medicins Sans Frontiers.

However, I would have to think a career is immoral in itself in order to think you should only do it out of sheer desperation. But you claimed not to think that? What the what?

Can a reason be vapid?

You have completely lost me.
Posted by shw3nn on March 16, 2011 at 10:26 AM · Report this
Maybe if they legalized sex work, it make take some of the stigma away, and hell, it would certainly generate income if the workers were taxed, lol!

I was just disgusted at not being able to find a job after graduating college for more then a lousy $7-10/hr, and having the brains I did, I realized that even though I am not gorgeous, I am seductive, and men like my company. $150/hr for merely my company sure as hell beat temping....if you wanted the clothes tom come off, the prices went up from there. I do think there are an awful lot of misguided stereotypes out there of people who enter the sex trade. Sure, I know some of the people might fit the mold of the drug addicted crack whore, but those were the minority in my circle. I would imagine those to be more of the truck stop girls, lol. Guys willing and able to pay my prices wanted someone who wasn't dirty and who could stimulate the biggest sexual organ, the brain. And I wasn't even a top rung girl, because I wasn't model pretty, like the girls who service the famous politicians and athletes.
Posted by badgirl on March 16, 2011 at 10:40 AM · Report this
I'm just wondering where Global Traveler lives that he's met so many sex workers, and if there are any apartments for rent in the neighborhood.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 10:43 AM · Report this
I think that if you go through all the trouble of planning the three-way you should talk about the possibility of a bad reaction before you actually go through with it. Have a safeword or whatever. That way you have a mutually agreed upon course of action if it doesn't turn out to be like you thought it would be.

Also, a lot of fantasies are better left as fantasies. Not all fantasies work in real life. I think that it's better to experiment before you take it to the level of threesome. Dip your toe in the water to see how it feels before you jump in all the way. I experimented with some beginners level kink (making out with another woman, group oral) and found it wasn't so good that I wanted to do it again. Then recently, I experimented with some bdsm and found it is something I like and might like to explore.

Maybe before you plan for a threesome, it would be a good idea to run a few trial experiments without having intercourse. That way you get to know what your comfort levels are and if you think you would be ok with taking it further. Threesomes aren't for everyone and I would bet that even experienced kinksters probably use their safewords from time to time.
Posted by not that kinky on March 16, 2011 at 10:43 AM · Report this
I'm guessing GT would be bothered as much by a professional football cheerleader being brought to a state dinner as a sex worker. I think he may not even realize it but it's not the money but the ridiculousness of the couple.

I was a sex worker back in the day and often catered to guys who didn't want to feel like they were with a whore. During one encounter I stopped riding a guy because there was a news report on about China joining the WTO and I was lost in the news and the guy took me out to dinner after and bought me a shitload of clothes and set up a ton of future dates because he thought that was the hottest thing ever. I was studying modern Chinese history at the time and it just caught my eye. I didn't realize until later he was an economic advisor to Asian trade specialists. Some 10+ years later long after I've retired to the burbs as the lawyer and uni prof's wife and gained 30 lbs and had four kids and three dogs, we still keep in touch and are FB friends and yak on the phone a couple times a month.

Now ASS, I am wondering if your letter is real. For many reasons. I don't know of any sex worker who would be upset by this. I'm also wondering what world we live in where gay men are questioning how to handle random sex the next day. I'm thinking YOU actually had a thing for the guy or something because why would you behave any particular way? The guy probably assumed you and client were casually dating, all you need to do is be cordial and civil. Since when does a random three way = dating after? You got some sex, you're done now. Why would you give a "cold shoulder" anyway? Weird letter. You wouldn't be the first man to be all casual once you finally boned the object of lust.
Posted by wendykh on March 16, 2011 at 10:52 AM · Report this
This has gotten so far off topic. My first post was in response to a prostitute and john who both lied to an innocent third party for the purpose of getting him into bed. Surely at some point between "Hi, nice to meet you." and the clothes ending up in a pile on the floor, Three must have said something along the lines of "What do you do for a living" or "How do you two know each other".

I'm not suggesting that anyone is under any obligation to disclose that they're there on a for hire basis as a matter of course, but when you're getting ready to crawl into bed with someone, then they're entitled to that information so that they can make their own informed decision.

It's no better than a married man removing his wedding ring and cruising a singles bar and picking someone up without disclosing that tiny little detail.

I don't see how you can defend that kind of deceit.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 16, 2011 at 11:05 AM · Report this
Global Traveler the more you talk, the more you sound like a hater. "I worked so hard all my life, and all they did is have sex and they get money! Wah Wah Wah."

Welcome to the way the world works always,ever. If you get pissy everytime someone brings a trophy date around, you must be the world's angriest man.

If you don't like your friends bringing their "dates" around, tell them. They're likely to know you as a person and not as a pissy-sounding judgy mcjudgerson with a chip on their shoulders about "whores", and listen to you.
Posted by HoneyNY on March 16, 2011 at 11:07 AM · Report this
Global Traveler the more you talk, the more you sound like a hater. "I worked so hard all my life, and all they did is have sex and they get money! Wah Wah Wah."

Welcome to the way the world works always,ever. If you get pissy everytime someone brings a trophy date around, you must be the world's angriest man.

If you don't like your friends bringing their "dates" around, tell them. They're likely to know you as a person and not as a pissy-sounding judgy mcjudgerson with a chip on their shoulders about "whores", and listen to you.
Posted by HoneyNY on March 16, 2011 at 11:08 AM · Report this
So many commenters are inferring that HD was doing this under duress or should have known better. Have you never been surprised by your own reaction to something? It's a totally understandable way to respond to a situation that you've never been in before, because you have no frame of reference.

It sounds like he did excellent due diligence in planning this thing, and was totally in touch with his own feelings about it, up to and including the moment those feelings took an unexpected turn. He also did it with extremely supportive partners, who abandoned the plan and tended to his needs as soon as he broke character.

To HD.... Chalk it up to a lesson learned and a boundary identified. And kudos to you for finding your boundary rather than assuming it's there and never daring to experience something you're curious about.
Posted by offfwhite on March 16, 2011 at 11:48 AM · Report this

"but when you're getting ready to crawl into bed with someone, then they're entitled to that information so that they can make their own informed decision."

I haven't really had a problem with what you've been saying, but I have to disagree with this. A random guy came up to Three and started flirting with him, then Three went back to his room for a threeway. Three ain't "entitled" to shit. He decided he was horny, he knew there are always risks associated with sleeping with someone you don't know, he did it anyway.

We all know humans are capable and usually inclined to lie a bit, especially when sex is involved. In your example of a married man removing his ring to cruise singles bars, let's say he goes to a bar, meets a woman, they flirt a bit, then go home for some sex. Did he wrong her by pretending to be single? NO. NOT AT ALL. if she cared about something like that, she wouldn't be having sex with a guy she just met at a bar.

it's one thing to decieve someone you're in a relationship with. but if i tell a random girl i meet at a bar that i'm a doctor and we end up fucking that night, she doesn't get to complain if she finds out I lied about being a doctor. she's perfectly entitled to decline further encounters, or even tell her friends about my lying ways, but she can't really complain that I "tricked" her into sex by misrepresenting myself.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 11:56 AM · Report this
More like HD should have written this up on Fetlife's Novices and Newbies group, and got cuffed for melodrama there. MMF penis-in-vagina as Insecurity trigger isn't Varsity level sex, it's Post-Grad psych that goes beyond being in love with the idea but blindsided by the reality of it and maybe sidetracking into why cuckholding is different from cuckqueaning to HD's inner hypocrite. HD, I knew a gal half your age who's response to that was DTFM; however, you have a supportive partner, now go get support and advice from your scene - people twice your age are just starting out and knowitalls half your age think they're fuckin' experts: don't ask Dan, Ask a Dom.
Posted by Monty St. Helens on March 16, 2011 at 12:12 PM · Report this
Thanks, Dan, for your amusing Bronte sisters reference in your answer to Heartbroken Dom. I think this piece of fourth-rate fiction writing would make an excellent entry for the annual Edward Bulwar-Lytton contest. Especially the overly-dramatic use of the single-sentence, stand-alone paragraph "Then my wife was vaginally penetrated by our friend." HD might want to modify this slightly before submitting it to the EBL contest. How about "It was a dark and stormy night . . . then my wife was vaginally penetrated by our friend." I smell a winner!
Posted by otis on March 16, 2011 at 1:05 PM · Report this
So lying to get someone to sleep with you is okay, but not wanting to associate with people who do makes me a hater? Glad that's been cleared up. Saved me a fortune in therapy.

And they say chivalry is dead.
Posted by Global Traveler on March 16, 2011 at 1:16 PM · Report this
@68, love the dark and stormy night idea.

I think the best part about the standalone sentence was the juxtaposition of that serious, dramatic sentence followed by "I instantly lost my bone." He's got this melodramatic overwrought prose and then adds "bone" in there as a noun. That's like inserting dialogue from a Seth Rogen movie into a bad Jewel poem.

And guys, do 30+ year old men refers to it as their "bone"? I've used bone as a verb, as in "I'd bone that," but never as a noun, though I don't actually have a bone, as I'm a chick.
Posted by Then he penetrated my wife's soul (er, I mean vagina) on March 16, 2011 at 1:36 PM · Report this
@69, you're losing it.
A. There's no evidence ASS lied. I don't tell one-night-stands my job before screwing them; why should he? If my friend serves me a bakery cake, has my friend lied to me because maybe I thought she baked it herself?

B. You don't want to associate with sex workers. Whether you associate with liars is not at issue.

Bottom line: you think sex workers are bad, diseased people, and if you had sex with one (for free) without knowing his/her history, that would piss you off. So-- I guess you'd better ask people about their sexual histories, then. And get to know them well enough to know if they're lying to you.

Me, I don't care if my partner is or was a sex worker. And apparently, neither did Third, or he would have investigated further. You don't get to assume people you meet are not and have never been sexually active.
Posted by EricaP on March 16, 2011 at 1:37 PM · Report this
secretagent 72
@15,46 - Let me paraphrase you: "I'm tired of doing (insert what I think is right) and having everyone else do (what I think is wrong) and profit from it."

Cry me a river. Lots of people don't pay taxes, litter, cut in line, cheat, steal, double-dip, etc etc. You should do what you think is right, and that should be its own reward. If it's not, maybe you should try something else, and not worry/judge/attack the totally harmless job & sexual choices of others.

That said, sex workers do have ethics, and it's reasonable to question whether it's right to present a false front to purposely lure someone into bed. I don't think the other party is going to be particularly broken up about it, personally, but I would think about it too. Some people have weird hangups (15) about hookers, and if your weird morality prevents you from wanting to have sex with hookers/carnivores/smokers/Republicans, that's your right.

That said, sex is often complicated and can be emotionally tangled, but we still need it all the same. It's way more reasonable to do a pro, who knows exactly what they're up for, than a drag a civilian who may have expectations you can't meet into it. Like hey, you don't want a girlfriend, a fuck buddy, a friends with benefits? You want a girl who will fuck you, leave and then never call you again? Get a pro. It's not much more expensive than a night on the town picking up some random, and it's a lot easier to negotiate your particular sex preferences with someone who sells it for a living.
Posted by secretagent on March 16, 2011 at 1:37 PM · Report this
@72 Agreed. And if you don't want to have sex with hookers/carnivores/smokers/Republicans... it's your job to ask people if they fall into whatever weird category you hate.
Posted by EricaP on March 16, 2011 at 1:43 PM · Report this
echizen_kurage 74
In your example of a married man removing his ring to cruise singles bars, let's say he goes to a bar, meets a woman, they flirt a bit, then go home for some sex. Did he wrong her by pretending to be single? NO. NOT AT ALL.

Let me see if I can follow your logic: because people frequently lie when they are seeking casual sex, it is therefore perfectly ethical to lie when one is seeking casual sex.

. . . I guess your mom never explained why "but everybody else is doing it" doesn't justify behaving like a jerk.
Posted by echizen_kurage on March 16, 2011 at 1:55 PM · Report this
I'm with EricaP and secretagent on the sex worker thing. Don't want to fuck hookers? Better ask first just to be safe. Same deal as not wanting to get HIV, not wanting to fuck Republicans, not wanting to fuck trust fundies, etc.

And I agree that Dan nailed a drama queen undercurrent in HD. But I'm not inclined to read into it that he was coerced, as some have (sorry avast2006, I often find you right on target, but I think you're reaching here). My guess is that he fell in that inevitable gap between Planning Everything Out Just So, and Actually Experiencing It.

Learning to relax, learning to swim in the shallow end first, learning that life is often best when it goes off-script (and that it inevitably will anyway) will all help. He may not have a problem with PIV nonmonogamy, he may have just pushed himself too far too fast.

But yeah, I'd like an anatomical diagram of where the soul is, because "It was as if all the air in the room was sucked out through my soul" sounds to me like he farted.
Posted by Chase on March 16, 2011 at 2:05 PM · Report this
Unicorn Guy (aka Manicorn): the elusive perfect man.
Posted by pawala on March 16, 2011 at 2:07 PM · Report this
The Ethical Slut has some great do's and don't's for three ways, etc.. I think all experimenting couples should read them before taking the plunge. Being over-prepared is definitely a sign of fear. The more rules there are to break, the more rules get broken, and the more hurt feelings come up.

When anyone freaks out during a scene, try not to make too big a deal out of it. It's ok to be scared, and if it's handled consciously, conscientiously, and calmly, you can even laugh those moments off later. Everyone freaks out sometime; you're not "special" for it. Take care of yourself so others don't get overtaxed, then ask for help if you really, really need it.

If you find you truly can't take care of yourself frequently, it may be time to consider working on your self-esteem issues. Hell, it's always time to do that.
Posted by namita000 on March 16, 2011 at 2:10 PM · Report this
justineplays 78
C'mon! Men, women, everyone lies to someone to get them into bed! I'm not saying its okay but if we are talking about one night stands or same day hookups, are we really expecting the person we just picked up to be honest? Just have safe sex and enjoy the fuck.

And just where is Globe Traveler hanging out that his "friends" regularly bring their paid companions to dinner parties who are mental midgets? I find most Ladies don't offer that service, or if they do, its because they can more than hold up their end of the conversation.

As for the rent boy, you knew the assignment, either take the money and deal or say no. I don't think anyone should be expecting a follow up call from a one night stand threesome--unless maybe YOU fell for the trick. Its also very possible the guy knew or guessed and everyone was just being polite.

A big fuck yeah! @27 and @38
Posted by justineplays on March 16, 2011 at 2:21 PM · Report this
Does he think third should have gotten a check also? He could have split the check and the end of the weekend and say good day to you with a tip of the hat sir.
Posted by Yumietreat on March 16, 2011 at 2:24 PM · Report this
echizen_kurage 80

Your cake analogy doesn't really hold. Only a first-class neurotic would be deeply offended if the host served a store-bought dessert instead of something homemade. However, I think it's entirely reasonable not to want to have sex with someone who's being paid to have sex with you, and I think it's also entirely reasonable to assume that the person having sex with you is not being paid to have sex with you (unless, of course, you hired them yourself). By failing to disclose that he was acting in a professional rather than a recreational capacity, ASS knowingly withheld information that might very well have impacted Three's decision to have sex with him. And that's not cool.
Posted by echizen_kurage on March 16, 2011 at 2:25 PM · Report this
Thank you SO much for running SG's letter. Finally, some validation from a major sex discussion medium that three-ways aren't always the forbidden fruit that will ruin the lives and relationships of everyone involved. I've had plenty myself, but when life goes swimmingly, it rarely makes headlines. :) Kudos!
Posted by jenn damnit adskfjaf on March 16, 2011 at 2:26 PM · Report this
@15: "he develops an attack of conscious."

The word you're looking for here, genius, is conscience. In a previous paragraph you had the nerve to call other people mental midgets. Well, maybe all of your hard work will allow you to afford a brain someday. I'm a sex worker, and I can certainly afford one of my own.
Posted by maenad69 on March 16, 2011 at 2:37 PM · Report this
Ophian 83
Another cheers for @36.

[Do Unicron guys have to sound like Orsen Welles?]
Posted by Ophian on March 16, 2011 at 3:08 PM · Report this
"Let me see if I can follow your logic: because people frequently lie when they are seeking casual sex, it is therefore perfectly ethical to lie when one is seeking casual sex."

not exactly, I'm saying that if you're telling yourself that you're having casual sex with a person you just met the same night because of their job or life story they told you and not because of the physical attraction and sexual chemistry you feel with this person, you're lying to yourself. and if you ARE having casual sex with someone you just met because of "facts" they have told you about themselves, then you really don't actually care THAT much about said facts being true, do you?

"But Catface," you say, "what if you asked them if they were disease free and they lied about that?" Well, that sucks, but that's the risk you took upon yourself when you decide to have sex with someone you just met. Yeah, they're a shitty person, but it's a Shitty World and everyone knows it. We all know the risks, we just decide to push them to the back of our minds because we're horny and we just wanna feel good.

That's why you don't raw dog a random.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 3:37 PM · Report this

They wouldn't be sexy enough to consume a girl's entire world if they didn't.
Posted by Catface Meowmers on March 16, 2011 at 3:41 PM · Report this
nocutename 86
You know: an attack of conscious. It's when someone ordinarily mentally asleep suddenly wakes up mentally for a second.
But fortunately, it usually only lasts for a brief time
Posted by nocutename on March 16, 2011 at 3:42 PM · Report this
I just want to say that if HD really got to age 36 (and years of happy marriage) without ever visiting the land of Insecurity, he's a very lucky man. Some of us arrive there before we ever find a sexual partner, and then have to find love while we're there.
Posted by Brett Alan on March 16, 2011 at 4:23 PM · Report this
@86. Haha, awesome! Wish I had thought of that possibility. As rare as it is short lived, I assume?
Posted by maenad69 on March 16, 2011 at 4:30 PM · Report this
I don't see where ASS owes it to the guy to confess. If the guy wants to have more sex with him later, and actually gets that hurt or confused look, can't he just say "It was Greg's idea" and kind of leave it there? Maybe even imply a lie in order to protect the client? "It was Greg's idea, I'm really not interested in one-on-one." (as if it's a monogam-ish boyfriend situation) It's truthful in the way that matters to the guy without being too shredding or outing his client.
Posted by JudT on March 16, 2011 at 4:37 PM · Report this
HD - I fucked your woman, too. Don't worry, though, she still loves you.
Posted by SleepingWithNannyState on March 16, 2011 at 5:02 PM · Report this
"... Brontë sister after a three-day bender..."
Thanks, Dan, brilliant. I laughed my ass off.
Posted by ozchick on March 16, 2011 at 5:08 PM · Report this
1: "Can we all please just stop with the candy coated euphemisms (rent boy, escort, companion, luggage lifter, etc) and just call these whores what they are....whores."

2: "I do find it interesting that so many people are so eager to jump down my throat for expressing an opinion."

Expressing an opinion in a unnecessarily rude way is what I would call it.

And then having the audacity to pretend to be innocent and wondering why people respond annoyed for just 'expressing an opinion'. You are quite something.
Posted by Tetsuo on March 16, 2011 at 5:33 PM · Report this
Apparently "chomping at the bit" is now considered acceptable:…

Good to know that's all you "have ever found wrong with any of Dan's column [sic]", though.

Posted by Enjoys irony even more than grammar on March 16, 2011 at 6:16 PM · Report this
The Wild Sow 94
@15 -- It's an attack of "conscience," not "conscious."
Posted by The Wild Sow on March 16, 2011 at 6:43 PM · Report this
The Wild Sow 95
Ooh, 'nother one:

@56 -- They are "quotation marks," not "parentheSES." ParentheSIS is the singular form.

Parenthesis (
Parentheses ()
Quotation marks ""
Apostrophe '

Hope this helps!
Posted by The Wild Sow on March 16, 2011 at 7:04 PM · Report this
The Wild Sow 96
@82 & 86 -- I guess that'll teach me to read ALL the comments before jumping in! Perfect definition, @86.
Posted by The Wild Sow on March 16, 2011 at 7:17 PM · Report this
secretagent 97
@EricaP - I agree - don't assume you know who you're fucking, especially when you ah, just met them. I just meant that if I was in rent boy's situation, I would wonder if I'd done the right thing too. It's got to be a trip to have someone be totally stoked to fuck you, casually & just for fun, until they find out you actually get paid for what the majority of us do for free. Getting around is getting around, y'all. I would bet money that higher class hookers have way lower rates of sti than the general population anyway.
Posted by secretagent on March 16, 2011 at 8:24 PM · Report this
Part of the sex worker's art is to help the client persuade him/herself that the sex worker is actually attracted to him/her. For most people, it's not hot to imagine that the person you're with is in reality repulsed by you and is faking pleasure.

ASS used that skill to make Three believe he flirted with and slept with him out of attraction, as opposed to just wanting the money from someone else. That's deception, and it's not in the same category as pretending to be a doctor or single to get someone into bed - the person pretending to be a single doctor is still NOT lying about his/her attraction; that's why he/she lies! But pretending an interest you don't feel so someone else will pay you? That's not cool. ASS shouldn't do it again.
Posted by Sancho on March 16, 2011 at 10:28 PM · Report this
Sorry but I think Global Traveler has a point - though not about everything. I mean, if one of my friends brought a date/girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse to a group dinner who just happened to be a prostitute, that would be one thing. But if the date was a date because s/he was bought and paid for, and it was obvious that was going on, that's just creepy. If you hire a prostitute, you should have enough discretion to keep that to yourself. Having to make conversation with a sex worker is one thing. Having to do it while the sex worker is "on the job" for someone else sounds really awkward, and I think that's a perfectly normal reaction. Plus, wouldn't you like to go to dinner with friends and not worry that the cops will be busting up the place at any minute?
Posted by Diagoras on March 16, 2011 at 11:11 PM · Report this
@99 said it better than I did. I'm sure that I've been in the company of discrete "professionals" many times without even realizing it. Because they were discrete. Unfortunately for me, I work in an industry where I'm surrounded by people with much more money than I and where professional dates are not uncommon. I try to avoid these functions, but sometimes that's just not possible.

It's probably like plastic surgery. The people who've had good plastic surgery go unnoticed. It's the ones that are done badly that get your attention.

You'd think from the comments that it's like The Chicken Ranch in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas...populated by sweet innocents and overseen by Dolly Parton. I stand by my comment that most people wouldn't want to live next to an actual one.

and thanks for the grammar and punctuation lessons. not that that is really the point of posting on these boards, but if I was going to pick up this particular stone....
@15 -- It's an attack of "conscience," not "conscious."
Posted by Global Traveler on March 17, 2011 at 12:11 AM · Report this
Chase @75: No big deal, it's just what stuck out at me from the letter. (Although, FWIW, I said "talked into," not "coerced." In my mind there is a difference.)

I will admit to possibly projecting. I had a girlfriend a long time ago who tried to talk me into non-monogamy even though it really wasn't my thing. That situation also involved all sorts of negotiations and expectations and stipulations supposedly revolving around making me feel safe with the situation. (Most of which turned out to be lip service once I was out of the room, but I digress. It sounds in HD's case that he was treated in good faith by his wife and the friend.) Anyway, that's why the idea of two years' worth of apparently a lot of prep sounds to me like somebody needed some persuading.

Be that as it may, people should cut him some slack. Even if you thought you were totally enthusiastic going in, something like that can be a real punch in the gut, and there is no knowing for certain whether it will be until the moment you actually experience it. He's been dealing with this huge feeling for less than a day. Sure he's overwrought. Extrapolating that to mean that he's a drama queen in general is kind of harsh.
Posted by avast2006 on March 17, 2011 at 2:13 AM · Report this
HD shows why some fantansies should remain fantansies. Regardless of how GGG they think they are, many people are surprized by how they react to the reality of their fantasy or their SO's fantasy. It is far too easy to forever change/damage a relationship through careless or ill conceieved words or actions. The unintended damage that is done can become permanent and all the regrets and goodwill in the world can never change the past. HD either learns to live with what happened and his emotional reaction or he needs to move on. It is real easy to say he shouldn't feel this way, but he does. He may well need professional help to get past this, but there are no guaranties. A big risk is that he will wind up in a negative feedback loop, endlessly replaying the scene in his mind. It sounds like he was traumatized and went into shock. This should not be trivialized. It could easily cost him a friendship and his marriage.
Posted by beentheredonethatgotthetshirt on March 17, 2011 at 4:37 AM · Report this
Wish granted...

Here's your Dan Savage is my rabbi t-shirt! You can customize it- right now it's on a black American Apparel t-shirt. 50% of the profits will be donated to The Trevor Project or the It Gets Better Project (Dan's choice- Dan, I'll email you as soon as the first sale happens)…

Posted by Dan Savage is my rabbi on March 17, 2011 at 4:38 AM · Report this
Wish granted...

Here's your Dan is my rabbi t-shirt! It's customizable and the default is a black American Apparel shirt. 50% of the profits will be donated to The Trevor Project or the It Gets Better Project (Dan's choice- Dan, I'll email you as soon as I get the first sale)…

Posted by Dan Savage is my rabbi on March 17, 2011 at 4:40 AM · Report this
@81 To state the obvious. Every individual is an individual, no situtation is the same, and what works swimmingly for one person is a disaster for another. One problem with giving/getting advice through an advice column is the lack of information provided and the assumptions made based on imperfect knowledge and understanding. Many people need or are looking for validation and affirmation of their actions/choices.
Posted by beentheredonethatgotthetshirt on March 17, 2011 at 4:59 AM · Report this
No one cuts through the B.S. like Dan Savage. I so love how he pegged HD in this column. Betcha HD makes good money, but his "friend" is younger and better looking.
Posted by OneTrickPony on March 17, 2011 at 5:19 AM · Report this
Rach3l 107
We all have our hard limits, HD. Most people pull kids and poop off the table when sex is involved. No reason you can't take vaginal sex with your lady off the table in a threeway, too. Live and learn! It sounds like the scene ended immediately and hopefully no permanent damage was done to the relationship. Just be glad that you found out about your limit in a safe, controlled environment and implement it in the future.
Posted by Rach3l on March 17, 2011 at 5:21 AM · Report this
The subtitle to "Dan Savage is my rabbi" should be "It gets better, boychick!"
Posted by wayne on March 17, 2011 at 6:00 AM · Report this
sissoucat 109
@100 - I do get your feelings. You feel akward to be around someone who is faking an attraction because of money. OK, I guess I would too, though I would resent the client much much more than the badly-behaved escort.

But surely some of your wealthy business partners have married attractive people from a poorer background. How do you feel when you have to meet those, of these poorer spouses, who married very obviously out of greed?

While they have the wedding stamp, which society condones a lot more than the escort label, they still are in fact long-term and full-time heavily paid escorts, right ?
Posted by sissoucat on March 17, 2011 at 6:22 AM · Report this
I don't mean to come out for or against global traveler. I can think of a lot worse people to have dinner with than a vapid rent boy (not saying all rent boys are vapid, I haven't really know many, and haven't known them well. I met one who seemed just about the smartest most sophisticated guy I ever met without him hardly saying anything, but he was the exception to the rule. Or maybe if he talked more he would have seemed vapid).

But GT did peg those vapid rent boys' ads pretty well with the "jockstrap to tuxedo" part and all the rest. My sense is that anyone tooting their horn like that must be pretty vapid and insufferable. I would say to GT to be polite and friendly to the rent boy, and roll your eyes till they need a retread at your friend/associate who hired him. He's the one who should be shamed for subjecting everyone to that awkward situation.

If you're paying for "companionship" by the hour, I just don't get why you would pay for someone to dress up for dinner and chat with people besides yourself. All I can figure is that is pure showing off. Showing off a trophy boy you want to make your friends think you got by your charm? Showing off that you have money to burn to pay a rent boy hundreds of dollars an hour to schmooze and knosh?

Whatever. I don't travel in such circles, but I wouldn't appreciate being subjected to that either. Either the rent boy is a twit and the situation is insulting. Or if he's hot and interesting, then that would just make me feel frustrated that I couldn't get or afford a guy like that, but my freaking associate the jerk can.
Posted by jussmbdy on March 17, 2011 at 8:27 AM · Report this
avast2006 @ 101: That's fair. The situation you describe is, unfortunately, not hard to imagine - I think there are probably a lot of examples of people getting copies of The Ethical Slut from their partners along with a lot of passive-aggressive "don't you want to be evolved and open-minded" pressure. Sounds to me like HD's case was more like someone trying anal sex without working up to it first, and I don't blame him for not being able to jump the high bar his first time out.

But one thing that sticks out to me, and that does contribute to the "drama queen" impression, is the fact that he wrote to Dan for advice the very day after this happened - not after a couple days of not being able to get over it or let go of it. HD wasn't in so much shock that he couldn't immediately think of a way to get even more attention from what happened.
Posted by Chase on March 17, 2011 at 9:31 AM · Report this
Arrgh, apparently editing the comment before submitting it doesn't UPDATE the comment! What I meant to say:

avast2006 @ 101: That's fair. The situation you describe is, unfortunately, not hard to imagine - I think there are probably a lot of examples of people getting copies of The Ethical Slut from their partners along with a lot of passive-aggressive "don't you want to be evolved and open-minded" pressure. (I've gotten some of that myself from someone who, in reality, was probably much less comfortable with that stuff than I am.) Sounds to me like HD's case was more like someone trying anal sex without working up to it first, and I don't blame him for not being able to jump the high bar his first time out.

But one thing that sticks out to me, and that does contribute to the "drama queen" impression, is the fact that he wrote to Dan for advice the very next day - not after a couple days of not being able to get over it or put it out of his mind, not after feeling like his girlfriend or his stunt-cock didn't understand, not after any further repercussions from the incident. HD wasn't in so much shock that he couldn't immediately think of a way to get even more attention from what happened.
Posted by Chase on March 17, 2011 at 9:35 AM · Report this
I have to confess to having had a somewhat similar reaction to that experienced by HD on our first try. I guess I then went through a period of introspection, after which (a year or so later) we tried again and it went much better.
Posted by Anthony62 on March 17, 2011 at 10:04 AM · Report this
secretagent 114
@98 - Who said rent boy was repulsed? I know a bunch of hookers, and most of them have relationships with their clients varying from mildly annoying to genuine liking, respect and attraction. They genuinely love sex, and like many of the rest of us, can get a great deal of enjoyment out of it even if the client isn't their "type". But just because you enjoy sales, customer service, accounting, whatever, doesn't mean you don't want to get paid.
Posted by secretagent on March 17, 2011 at 10:31 AM · Report this
@103/104 –

Thanks, but this is more what I had in mind. Only better.
Posted by jaspgh on March 17, 2011 at 11:10 AM · Report this
Discreet. Discreet. Discreet.

Damn it all to hell.

I feel better now.
Posted by monkeywithcarkeys on March 17, 2011 at 11:15 AM · Report this
Just read an article all about you in the Washington Monthly. It was kind of negative and I was pretty annoyed at the writer, mostly though, at the last line of the article. Anyway, Thank you for making the sex lives of people around the world so open and caring and wonderful. I for one truly appreciate this column.
Posted by bingbangboozleBAM on March 17, 2011 at 1:07 PM · Report this
Just read an article all about you in the Washington Monthly. It was kind of negative and I was pretty annoyed at the writer, mostly though, at the last line of the article. Anyway, Thank you for making the sex lives of people around the world so open and caring and wonderful. I for one truly appreciate this column.
Posted by BingbangboozleBAMF on March 17, 2011 at 1:08 PM · Report this

Right on.
Posted by Aphonia on March 17, 2011 at 1:39 PM · Report this
It would be so easy to take the "Three-Way" situation and insert home furnishings into the same scenario. How many times have we all wanted, say, a new couch. We plan, we measure, we rearrange the room for said new couch.

We go to the store, ripe with anticpation, select the fabric (which is agonizing, because they never have the right color in the exact pattern that would be perfect) and we find the perfect fabric only to discover it is out of stock. We pick another and the order is placed. We spend WEEKS waiting for the couch.

Then it arrives. Then we move it in only to discover that it isn't as we had hoped it would be.

We can't take it back (no returns on custom orders) and it really doesn't fit anywhere well, or we don't fit in it well, and our living room is ruined. RUINED!!!!

Three ways and couches. One in the same.
Posted by stude62 on March 17, 2011 at 2:13 PM · Report this
muzyqman 121
Notice to the rent-boy about what stays in the resort and what lingers on: I saw a t-shirt online that said "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, except for chlamydia!"
Posted by muzyqman on March 17, 2011 at 2:31 PM · Report this
Thank you, 114. I think there's an issue here about how much respect escorts/sex workers/prostitutes are due. Unless you are one of those vapid inherited wealth people, you've spent a whole bunch of your life doing things you wouldn't have done if someone wasn't giving you money for it. It's called a job. So have I, and even though there was one job I absolutely adored, I still wouldn't have done all that work if I hadn't been getting a paycheck.

So I think the distinction between me and a sex worker, between a doctor and a rent boy, is one of degree, not kind, and I cannot find it in me to look down on them. Especially not the rent boy I have an appointment with tomorrow afternoon. (Whoops! Gave the game away!)
Posted by Steve T. on March 17, 2011 at 2:37 PM · Report this
I used to know a lesbian clinical psychologist specializing in couples therapy, both straight and gay. She was no fan of three-ways saying that the reality of a three-way is very different than the fantasy and that they could quite often lead to break ups. To be honest, she said that couples who had enjoyable three-ways would probably not seek her counsel. While I have never participated in a three-way, those that I have known about did not work out well.
Posted by tmrobertca on March 17, 2011 at 2:55 PM · Report this
because your friend entered your wife, your worry afterward is "is my dick big enough?" funny, when he was licking her clit, hd, you didn't wonder "is my tongue limber enough/long enough?" and when he was stroking her ass you didn't wonder "is my hand smooth/strong enough?" so, that's what it's all about, then--your cock. on the subject of their cocks, it seems to me that men are stupid stupid stupid and self absorbed, and at the expense of their partners. pity.
Posted by ellarosa on March 17, 2011 at 3:25 PM · Report this
@29 had it spot on. Non-monogamy isn't for everyone, but if you read enough Dan Savage and your SO is pressuring for it, you could easily be convinced-- over time -- to give it a try. I love Dan's writings, but I know in my heart that non-monogamy of any kind would be irrevocably damaging to my marriage. I have learned that as a result of my outsized reaction to minor betrayals and lots of therapy to understand my abusive/neglectful childhood-- i.e., the hard way, but not the hardest way.

The issue, and the reason HD wrote to Dan so soon (drama-seeking aside) was that this forum is where non-monogamy is routinely normalized. HD is perhaps implicating Dan's modus operandi, or is urging him to consider those for whom monogamy is a psychological imperative. It is a shame HD had to discover his membership in this group in such a way.
Posted by wxPDX on March 17, 2011 at 4:08 PM · Report this
I don't know why everyone is so hard on HD.

First, his writing style... perhaps he reads. You know--books. Dead trees? Those of us who read a lot tend to write (a) carefully and (b) in a style that is an amalgam of the styles that speak to us. Especially when we're writing about something emotionally charged. It likely isn't pompous; it's just how he learned to communicate with people whom he assumes are also educated.

Second, his dilemma: it seems to me that he tried something daring and had lots of fun right up to a certain point, and then he discovered a limit. What's the problem? He could perhaps ask his wife whether she wants to leave him because some other man has penetrated her (or for any other reason), and then get back to figuring out how much fun they can have while honouring boundaries. He knew he'd learn something--the fact that what he learned surprised him doesn't take away from the experience. He can probably expect the next try to be more successful.

Insecurity? If his wife can't convince him that she still wants him, then they need to figure out where trust failed (and as long as there's no trust, the relationship is doomed). If the problem is on his end, doesn't just about every relationship book ever have a chapter on insecurity? The chapter in The Ethical Slut might be especially relevant to him.
Posted by something on March 17, 2011 at 4:20 PM · Report this
maybe HD should try some alcohol first next time
Posted by deflationist theory on March 17, 2011 at 4:33 PM · Report this
Gt, really? Are you trying to look dumb? Discrete, not discreet? These words have very different meanings. I wouldn't even bring it up, but for the fact that I'm one of those mental midgets you mentioned...
Posted by maenad69 on March 17, 2011 at 4:39 PM · Report this
You're not nearly as smart as you think you are.
Posted by maenad69 on March 17, 2011 at 4:41 PM · Report this
HD you're not good enough for your wife, if you were she wouldn't have been screwing another guy.
Posted by Quark on March 17, 2011 at 5:34 PM · Report this
I don't do whores. I like the thrill and depth of human interaction.
Posted by Hunter78 on March 17, 2011 at 5:40 PM · Report this
@5/7/11/61/66/78: Are you all suggesting here that the vast majority of people are or ought to be under the impression that an instance of hot sex, especially 3 way hot sex, is NSA and one night only unless specified otherwise? That's pretty cynical. One would think it would be quite the opposite, as a well-executed 3 way where fun-hopefully-even-when-sober-later times are had by all probably doesn't happen very often in the lives of most people. As such, said people might be bewildered if there was no further hot sex to be had and no apparent reason why. Not that this natural bewilderment ought to extend itself into any expectation of any flavor of "dating" or commitment or even friendship, but is a clear and kind albeit direct debriefing really above and beyond? And what @30 said. I make this point as someone who has had plenty of casual sex and sometimes one night stands with the vast majority of my partners before I committed to marrying one of them. The exception, not the rule, was to leave things "up in the air" either before or after.

@8 Mike Leung: I don't understand why you keep using "slick" like that. It's pretty clear from the dictionary definition and all the discussions we've had here that your syntax is at best a stretch. If you want to make a point to the group I think it would be best to use words that make general sense. If not, why post? This is not an attack. I'm merely curious.

@38 shw3nn: Well said indeed.
Posted by zell_zyte on March 17, 2011 at 5:53 PM · Report this
131: I read a book once by Edmund White, who said that during his many visits to gay bathhouses, he had some of the most intense, intimate, emotional, and highly cherished conversations of his life. Why? BECAUSE he was never going to see this man again. It freed them both up, totally.

I also think that HD, his wife, and their friend should try it again, probably after a cool-down period. They should review what happened: HD found that he couldn't handle what he'd thought he could. Lay new boundaries well within what he KNOWS he can handle, all promise to obey them, and try again. It's like what they say about falling off a horse, the best thing you can do is mount up again. (Boo! Pun! Boo!)
Posted by Steve T. on March 17, 2011 at 6:32 PM · Report this
Whores are humans too, hunter78. That's what my clients love about me--they get to have sex with a sweet, lovely, genuine lady...and I'm quoting my own reviews. Try getting together with a decent whore sometime.
Posted by maenad69 on March 17, 2011 at 7:48 PM · Report this
@ 125: I'm not buying your point. First of all, none of us knows why HD wrote to Dan so quickly, so the reason you give ("this forum is where non-monogamy is routinely normalized") is really your reason, not his. Second, I don't see why there's any need to "implicate" Dan - I don't believe Dan's ever claimed that everyone is or should be comfortable with non-monogamous relationships. That sounds like your agenda coming through. In fact I think Dan's been pretty consistent that people should be honest about their sexuality with themselves and each other - often that means admitting to an interest in non-monogamy, which is routinely stigmatized outside of this forum, and sometimes it means admitting to not being comfortable with non-monogamy and not going along with something just because your partner insists on it. In fact, I specifically remember Dan counseling someone in a relationship that was becoming long-distance that non-monogamy was not a requirement.

It sounds like you're blaming Dan for HD's "bad experience", which is unfair, especially since HD did not actually have a problem with non-monogamy - he was totally digging what happened up to the point where his soul was penetrated. So I don't think this is an example of someone being pressured into non-monogamy, I think this is an example of someone being uncomfortable with a particular aspect of non-monogamy (PIV sex) on a particular occasion (his very first time in a threesome). He'll have to figure out where his boundaries actually are now, but this isn't necessarily a sign that he and his "soulmate" have angered the Sex Gods and must never again meddle with Things That Must Not Be Fucked With.
Posted by Chase on March 17, 2011 at 8:21 PM · Report this
@132 - Actually, I'm pretty sure the three men involved all thought it was a one-night stand. The Third did not make any effort to get ASS's contact info, and has not reached out to him. ASS is merely worried what to do if he runs into him. It is clear that his professional duty to his client trumps his desire to come clean with Third. If he doesn't like his professional duty to his client, he should stop being a sex worker. Or he should ask his client to explain the situation to Third.
Posted by EricaP on March 17, 2011 at 8:23 PM · Report this
Dear Dan, I'm writing to you as an editor about a word usage problem. I'm not a word nazi about spelling. I know the two meanings of discrete/discreet, but I don't know or give a damn which spelling goes with which meaning. It's just arbitrary. I'm not a fussbudget!
But lately the word "said" keeps coming up as an adjective. "Said rentboy", "Said dom". I'm really over it. Is this some sort of faux legalese from a cop show on TV or a courtroom drama show? Where and how did this outrageous usage that is simultaneously pedantic and fatuous become so commonplace seemingly overnight.
Make it stop! Isn't there some software that can scrub these people and their comments from the internet? Don't you have friends on websites and weekly magazines that could do something? This is worse than a santorum stain on your wedding dress. This is worse than the misused word "ironic". Please stop it!
Posted by jussmbdy on March 17, 2011 at 9:33 PM · Report this
112: Regarding HD writing in too soon for your taste: well, you can render that verdict if you want, but from my perspective, when people are freaked-the-fuck-out, they aren't thinking up cool-headed rational responses in terms of "I guess I had better sit with this a few days to see if it goes away on its own." Saying that he is writing in so soon as the attention-seeking device of a drama queen, in order to put himself in the center of the spotlight, is a stretch. More like it's the panic reaction of somebody who has been completely gobsmacked by what happened. Might as well slap the same label on a drowning swimmer.
Posted by avast2006 on March 17, 2011 at 11:13 PM · Report this
@136 - Would it have been reasonable or wise to turn down the job in the first place? I did once do something that seemed similar in that it appeared to involve manipulated consent, and it was turned out to be really difficult. If I hadn't caught on that the other two were on the same page and I was really the one being manipulated, I'd likely have backed out.
Posted by vennominon on March 18, 2011 at 4:09 AM · Report this

Sssshhh.... the adults are talking.
Posted by offfwhite on March 18, 2011 at 7:01 AM · Report this
@137: english language evolves. "said noun" is no longer considered wrong or pedantic. I know why it bothers you (it bothers me when people say that something "aggravates" them) but word usage changes, even faster in english than some other languages, so try to enjoy it!
Posted by brokephilosopher on March 18, 2011 at 9:52 AM · Report this
With regard to HD.

The first time I played golf was a nightmare experience with dribbled shots, lost balls, and broken clubs. I swore I'd never do it again.

But after after a little practice and support from my partners, I tried it again and it was a bit more fun and I got better. And then better and better. And now, while I'll never be more than average, I love it!

Even though sometimes it doesn't go just right and I get frustrated, it's still the best— the anticipation; the thrill of getting ready; planning on how I'm going to approach each hole; grabbing that shaft; lining up the shot and putting it into the hole. And the final high-five with my playing partners as we relax after-wards with a nice cool one.


So don't give up yet. The learning curve may be a bit steep with some uncomfortable moments, but in the long run...
Posted by wilden on March 18, 2011 at 9:57 AM · Report this
Personally, I think every couple with an interest in non-monogamy should read Sex at Dawn first to help draw the line in their heads between lust and companionship. That book has seriously helped me reconsider my own insecurities and see how companionship and sex have been thoroughly entangled by modern marriage, which is itself just a recent product of post-agricultural societies.

With that understanding, perhaps HD could see how his jealousy over losing the companionship of his "soulmate" was triggered by sexual insecurities. It seems the "trust" between them may be too focused on his ability to sexually satisfy her on his own and not on the bond they share otherwise.
Posted by SBelvedere on March 18, 2011 at 6:24 PM · Report this
XiaoGui17 144
@ Global Traveller: Is it possible that the sex workers who weren't obviously sex workers blended in so well that you didn't realize that's what they were? When you speak about sex workers being insufferable bores, maybe you were only counting the ones who were obviously sex workers, and excluding the ones who did a good job of fitting in because you didn't realize that's what they were.

Availability heuristic and all that jazz...
Posted by XiaoGui17 on March 18, 2011 at 8:11 PM · Report this
@ 138: I'm not rendering a verdict. I'm just saying it's one of the things that contributed to an overall sense that he might be a bit of an attention whore, which is a common enough interpretation that I don't think it's much of a stretch. Most people when they're drowning don't try to get on national television.
Posted by Chase on March 19, 2011 at 2:46 AM · Report this
And before anyone makes the obvious point, sure, people turn to Dan for advice all the time, if they didn't he would have to make all this stuff up himself (hmmm...). My sense is that most people do it when they've exhausted their closer, more immediate options, or don't have any, and it's not as if either his girlfriend or his guy friend were unsympathetic. Advice columns, even in the internet age, tend not to give very immediate satisfaction. Not passing judgment, but it's definitely not inconsistent with drama seeking.
Posted by Chase on March 19, 2011 at 2:54 AM · Report this
No one has suggested that HD and his wife try a MFF three way as a way to make HD comfortable with a MMF three way. I wonder how the wife would respond to that. The LW doesn't say, but I believe he implies that their marriage has been a mongamous relationship up to this point. I'm curious, does the three way constitute an openning of their marriage. That would add a whole new dimension to the situation. If they haven't discussed that,
could that be a underlying cause (conscious or unconscious) of his melt down and insecurity?
Posted by a skeptic and a cynic on March 19, 2011 at 4:26 AM · Report this
@56 parenthesis = ()
Quotation marks = "
That is all.
Posted by not so smart afterall huh? on March 19, 2011 at 11:05 AM · Report this
@16: I guess it's a matter of taste, but opinions are divided as to whether champing is truly onomatopoeic. The original idiom IS "champing at the bit." I know language changes through use and mis-use, but champing is recognized as "more" correct by a number of institutions and publications, including the Associated Press.

From the OED entry on the etymology of Champ:

Etymology: Only since 16th cent. Cham (chawm, chamb), champ, and the dialect chamble (Halliwell), appear all to belong to a primary chamb, apparently closely connected or identical with jam n.1 (jamb), and jamble, to squeeze with violence, crush. The group is not distinctly traceable outside English: the Swedish dialect kämsa /tʃemsa/ to chew with difficulty (Rietz in Skeat), Sanskrit jambha jaw, tooth, and Greek γομϕίος grinder, molar tooth, have been compared; but links are wanting.

Possibly the group is an instance of recent onomatopoeia: Wedgwood gives instances showing that cham(b), jam(b), are natural representations of the action or sound of the jaws in diverse and distant languages.
Posted by Zac on March 19, 2011 at 11:09 AM · Report this
@146: As far as I can tell, HD's wife IS the closer, more immediate option. Problem is, she is also the problem. When you feel like a person is saying one thing to you in order to be reassuring, but acting inconsistently with that, more reassurances from that person don't go very far.

@147: see #32. Personally, I would like to hear exactly what form his insecurities are taking, because that would provide some indication of what sort of response would alleviate them. I am guessing that they generally sound like "She wants someone else because I'm not good enough/big enough/skilled enough/hot enough." Having him experience multiple women being hot for him would go a long way towards balancing out the idea that he's kind of ordinary and his wife therefore needs more than just him.

I'm wondering whether HD is still reading, and would he care to comment further?
Posted by avast2006 on March 19, 2011 at 4:14 PM · Report this
What's all the hate for the Bronte sisters amd sensitive literate guys? Y'all are pretty mean.

Hang in there, Brokenhearted Dom.

It Gets Better...I guess.
Posted by TheOtherWoman on March 19, 2011 at 10:08 PM · Report this
echizen_kurage 152

Ooh, interesting. The Japanese word for "to bite/chew" is "kamu"; I wonder if it derives from the same onomatopoeic principle.
Posted by echizen_kurage on March 20, 2011 at 6:50 AM · Report this
"I feel scared and trapped in a land that I have never visited before, a land called Insecurity."

Sounds like Rod Serling.
Posted by Hunter78 on March 20, 2011 at 7:36 AM · Report this
News flash: EVERY field has insufferable bores in it. EVERY field has charming, fascinating, compelling people in it. The [fill in the blank: escort, trust-funder, janitor, whatever] who delights everyone at the dinner table is a delightful person; never mind what they do for a living.
Posted by Sarah in Olympia on March 20, 2011 at 11:12 AM · Report this
And I have to add: the [fill in the blank] who delights someone in bed is a delightful person; never mind what he or she does for a living.
Posted by Sarah in Olympia on March 20, 2011 at 11:13 AM · Report this
Global Traveler...

Instead of ragging on escorts, perhaps you should be ragging on your friends. After all, if you feel that escorts are so vapid and have nothing of value to bring to the table, what would that say about the men who hire them as companions? And what does it say about you for tolerating it if you're so disgusted by the practice? You and your friends sound like a quite a pathetic bunch, sitting around at dinner parties filled with resentment while secretly judging each other. GOOD TIMES!
Posted by Rowing Uses on March 21, 2011 at 12:21 PM · Report this
There's an important lesson about being a dom here...with great power comes great responsibility. While intellectually it's easy to say that every party bears responsibility for consensual sex, it can be tough to convince the emotions when you're playing out a master/sexslave fantasy.

When a sub gets pushed farther than they want to go, it's a little bit easier for them to tell themselves, "I only did it because they wanted it" and learn their lessons from there. Whereas a dom who finds themselves suddenly turned off is stuck with, "I gave the fucking command!"

Subs get a safeword--one power they reserve is the power to stop things altogether (and if you're playing with BDSM you'd better be emphasizing that.) It can be easy for the dom to forget that they have got that power, too. You've got the right and responsibility to stop if the situation isn't working for you physically or emotionally, even if the situation happened at your command, and that's okay. Not doing so is like a sub not using their safeword--it can turn a situation that will at best be awkward into something much much worse than awkward.

Maybe doms need a safeword, too, something to distinguish play-acting "Do you like that, bitch?" (yes sir!) from "Are you getting off on this, baby? Because I'm doing this to make you happy." Just like a sub still has self-autonomy when they leave the bedroom, a dom still has a desire to please/serve/love others. Folks have said HD is being a drama queen, but hey, doms are allowed some small share of drama, too, especially if they're reacting to going too far with the dom thing.

All that said, HD did stop things, and it sounds like his wife handled the situation as best as I can imagine it being handled. Be reassured that you're all actually navigating this pretty maturely.

Posted by JackDitch on March 21, 2011 at 1:08 PM · Report this
ah, this is why i love dan savage so. when other advice columnists are writing about boring-ass wedding etiquette issues or whatever, here i get to read about rent boys! now THAT's the kind of quandary i want to ponder.

sending the love,
Posted by inbed on March 22, 2011 at 10:41 AM · Report this
Heartbroken Dom - you lost me after you used the term "soul mate". That right there makes you a douche. I hope Dan was able to fix whatever your problem was/is.

Posted by wolfhound on March 22, 2011 at 3:55 PM · Report this
Champing at the bit is just more ... arch. Rather like "my old stamping ground" instead of "stomping." I'd go with the former in either case, but wouldn't chomp off the head of anyone who committed the latter and stomp those suckers flat.
Posted by Warsaw on March 22, 2011 at 4:01 PM · Report this
It does my heart glad to hear about SG and her great experience. Well done to (all) involved!
Posted by qmars7199 on March 22, 2011 at 10:53 PM · Report this
It seems that many of us would fuck rent boys, a friend's wife, and a rabbi, but not someone who mistypes a homonym.
Posted by Portia on March 27, 2011 at 12:19 AM · Report this

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