A friend recently told me that he was "solopoly," where he doesn't have a monogamous or even a primary relationship, but instead has multiple relationships with varying degrees of physical intimacy. Is this a thing now? I consider you the authority on all things relationship, traditional or otherwise, and would appreciate having you weigh in on this one.

Some Only Love One

This is, indeed, a thing now:

Solo polyamory is a fluid category that covers a range of relationships, from the youthful “free agent” or recent divorcee who might want to “settle down” some day but for now wants to play the field with casual, brief, no-strings-attached connections, to the seasoned “solo poly” who has deeply committed, intimate, and lasting relationships with one or more people. Some solo polys have relationships that they consider emotionally primary, but not primary in a logistical, rank, or rules-based sense, and others don’t want the kinds of expectations and limitations that come with a primary romantic/sexual relationship.

Here's my theory: taxonomists don't have much to do these days—there's not much left on the planet in need of "description, identification, naming, and classification" since humans are driving everything that isn't human to extinction—so they've turned their attentions to human sexuality and gender. It would explain the explosion of new classifications (some needed, some not) and new ten dollars words (ditto) that no one can keep up with. Idle taxonomists—it's the only explanation that makes any sense.

Also, SOLO: that space between "solo" and "poly" is important. Quickly reading your letter I heard so-lop-oh-lee (in my head)—sounds like "sloppily"—and not "soh-lo pahl-ee." Most solo polys would object to the suggestion—even the hint of a suggestion—that there's anything sloppy, emotionally or sexually, about their relationship preference/orientation.

UPDATE: My brother weighs in on Twitter:

"Solopoly" = Formerly known as "being in grad school" or "working in bar or restaurant."

A few more short letters... after the jump.


Straight guy here. My wife may let me do her anally. Should I wear a condom for cleanliness purposes?

Clueless About Buttfucking

Some people use condoms during anal for just that purpose, CAB. If your wife is nervous about making a mess, or you're concerned about getting shit on your dick, anal douching is your first and best line of defense. (Or your second: forgoing anal is your first line of defense.) But a condom is a great backup: pull out if there's a problem, pull open the base of the condom, and turn the whole thing inside out as you lift it off your dick out. Mess safely contained in your dick's very own hazmat suit.

I've got a first world problem for ya: My partner and I are bi cis 20 somethings who are generally despised by our peers for wanting more awesome sex than we already get. We are constantly scouring OkCupid and Tinder for agreeably fuckable young women who claim to be bisexual, kinky, etc. Now, it has worked several times but we've been stood up an equal number of times. We have detected a pattern: people are very excited about the situation and then suddenly they fall off the face of the planet, never to respond to a text message again. What gives? We feel like we should have an easier time with this all things considered including living in "the most promiscuous city in the US"!

Frustrated Unfortunate Couple Kramped

Some people are fakes, some are flakes, and some simply get cold feet—and the odd non-flake/-fake could decide that you're not for her after swapping a few texts/sexts. It happens. That said, FUCK, you're batting/bedding .500 with the folks you've contact on OkCupid and Tinder? That's an enviable record!

Is kinkiness hereditary?

Sincerely Curious

I have no idea, SC—but someone should ask Marianne Faithful what she's into:

Faithfull was born in Hampstead, London. Her father, Major Robert Glynn Faithfull, was a British Army officer and professor of Italian Literature at Bedford College of London University. Her mother, Eva von Sacher-Masoch, Baroness Erisso, was originally from Vienna.... Faithfull's maternal great great uncle was Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, the 19th century Austrian nobleman whose erotic novel, Venus in Furs, spawned the word "masochism."