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Do you people read Shortpacked?
I am also inclined towards monogamy. I've never once been tempted to cheat. Ever. I've been dating for only nine years, so maybe that will change some day, but I figure if I was going to be tempted, I'd have been tempted by now. This is not due to lack of sex drive, or because other people aren't attractive. I simply have no desire to have sex with anyone else. At all. I don't expect that from my partners, but I do expect honesty and monogamy. I know that's hard to find, but I'll keep looking until I do.
Also I believe that "natural" in the sense of the cheating/multiple partners discussion could also be "pervasive" or "nearly universal". Semantics do not change facts (unless you are in the Grand Old Party, then they dictate reality).
How can there be a power dynamic in asking to have those acts happen on my clean feet, when it's vanilla if it happens on my pussy ? I'm not tying my partner or anything. He's not a foot fetishist, I suppose I am, right ?
"Sure, you can massage my feet, after a full body massage!"
"Sure, you can massage my feet, just do the dishes first!"
"Sure, you can play with my feet, right after you put those new pumps you bought me on them!"
I get no sexual pleasure from having my feet played with, but damn if it doesn't just feel good and relaxing. I would love to find a partner into a foot fetish.
Breaking free of fascist thinking about sexuality doesn't count for much if you then turn around and become fascist about what you've decided is "normal." This is includes monogamous behavior and, as 96 points out, the fact that a lot of people's lives don't revolve around sex. Low libidos are normal, too, and they don't imply anything about the person any more than other manifestations of sexuality.
When I was younger and uneducated about such things, I thought it would be disgusting to indulge a fetish because I assumed it would only be about the fetish itself and no longer be about me or us.
I have learned it doesn't have to be that way. It can just mean that there is an extra erogenous zone to play in.
I also wish Dan would stop using science that doesn't exist to prop up his views. "Monogamy isn't natural" is so much bogosity I lose a lot of respect for anything Dan says. I have no respect anti-gayers who say 'x isn't natural because they say so', for the same reason, they're talking completely out of their ass just to try and justify something.
"On another note... I think the twin conceits of 'natural' and 'unnatural' are not particularly applicable to beings that have transcended, EVOLVED, as far as humans have beyond the basic life model of stay-alive-and-reproduce." Any species that "evolved" beyond staying alive and reproducing would swiftly die out. Also, every other species on earth today has had exactly as long to reproduce as we have.
Worth mentioning, because the (meaningless and un-biological) idea that humans are "more evolved" than any other species is often behind the notion that monogamy should come easy to us.
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And the other - it's kind of condescending to call someone's foot fetish "tame", "boring", "no big deal", etc. I dated a guy with a foot fetish and we were together for a *long* time before he "came out" about it. Each relationship he enters is at risk with this revelation of kink, just like any other kink.
As far as monogamy is concerned, every individual is oh, I don't know individual!
Dan, thanks for the thought provoking columns, my life broadened considerably when I found you!
As far as monogamy is concerned, every individual is oh, I don't know individual!
Dan, thanks for the thought provoking column, my life broadened considerably when I found you!
Uh--yeah. This is the mentality I work with. And apparently, this is the bats;hit sociopathy of some of the people who read the Stranger.
Are you all out there beating the shit out of each other in order to fix your relationships (fetishes aside) and telling yourselves that this is your karmic reward for millenia of sexism? Because I feel totally sorry for you, if this is what your life is like.
Rationality goes along with honesty, and, believe it or not, it works with love MUCH better than some bullshit idea of romance. Having a happy life is the point, sociopaths. Not "winning."
There are a lot of issues with non-monogamy that I would not want in a relationship. One, time- the time a man spent looking for new sex partners is time he wouldn't be spending with me, his friends, his job, or his hobbies. There's a limited number of hours in the day. Two, disease- condoms simply do not cover all diseases (plus they break, so if there's a man and woman involved, there is a risk of pregnancy), and multiple sex partners mean multiple tests and the possibility of disease. Third, the actual breakup of the relationship caused by new sex partners. It's not just about "The One" or "endless love".
I know people who make non-monogamy work. And that's great for them. But it's not for me, and people should not be pressured into accepting it because their partner is somehow entitled to fuck other people. Like Dan said, a foot fetish is just a small private thing, so why not just indulge your partner if you love them- but I feel non-monogamy is a much bigger deal than a foot fetish.
Ok- He cheated and that sucks, that hurts- leave him, forgive him,stay and make him pay for his errors for the rest of his days, whatever but NOTHING justifies assaulting your partner.
HNM, not getting to completely indulge your sex drive is the price you pay for a solid relationship, OK? It's not some major existential conflict that your soul can't abide; it's something most people in committed relationships live with every day. You'll survive, trust me. A solid relationship is a hell of a lot harder to find than sex. If you can't, please end your relationship with what sounds like a jewel of a girl so some decent guy who understands reality and commitment can treat her right.
I think I'd say find some female friend of ours, give her a pedi monthly, and then come home and do ME all night. :)
Thank you @105. BTW @108, Zukomi said "Foot fetishism is frequently not just about the feet," not "is NEVER just about the feet." It sounded like Zukomi's experience. If your experience was different, @108, and it worked for you, then sweet. Thanks @118; this has more often been my experience.
@128: COMPLETELY. America is F@$K'D UP. Glorify violence, yet obsess about repressed sexual fantasies...We can do better.
At any rate, clearly this couple is not really compatible long term. Not because he has a fetish, but because of this: "I'm at a stage in my sexual growth where I need to experience my fetish."
What a whingey, indulgent, self-help piece of crap. Who here went through a "process" of "sexual growth"? Most of us lost our virginity, went through a few partners, maybe learned a few tricks along the way. That's it. It just happens. "I'm a at stage..." etc sounds like frankly he's looking for ways to become more hardcore in his fetishes.
And Charlie: no one could have put it better than you. Monogamy is a valid choice. It's also to some extent a sacrifice of thrills, adventure, and sexual variety. Not a big sacrifice though, assuming you and your partner are sexually imaginative and generous. But what you gain, in terms of commitment and intimacy with a long-term partner, is worth that sacrifice.
The Tiger thing? There were two issues here. Either a guy genuinely falls in love with another woman, can't bear to leave his wife, and has a long-term affair/"second wife" or mistress French-style. Or a guy has a big libido and ego and feeds it with a long string of lapdancers and strippers and party girls. What goes on tour stays on tour. But it didn't with Tiger, did it? He enjoyed lengthy relationships and relationship intimacy with at least a dozen different women. It was far more than just sex and a high libido. No wonder his wife is devastated.
This is an honest question, no kind of judgement. I don't know how this works for people and I'm just curious.
Yes, it is messed-up for the media to condone spousal abuse, regardless of the gender of the abusing spouse, but what we should be wondering about is why we're reacting to something that DIDN'T HAPPEN.
@144 - Mike1222, tell yourself what to do. Please don't assume you know what's best for me. My marriage to my husband is none of your business. We are non-monogamous and married and it works for us. Our marriage, our rules.
@142 -Magpie, I can't speak for anyone's relationship but my own. I have had an emotional connection to my other partner(s). Like any relationship, there are emotional risks. Yes, I comforted my sweetie when another person "dumped on" them. Even when I was RELIEVED that the offending person had left the scene. (One person was mean to one of my guys, one person tried to convince one of my guys to leave me - bzzzt, wrong answer!)
@94 - XoXo, ME, TOO! I adore having my feet attended to. Maybe I'll have to audition for that position! :-)
@ 85 - Portland Scribe, oh, I hope you are kidding about "the smell of anal"! If the anus being penetrated smells funky, it's because it's not clean enough. Find yourself Tristan Taormino's book about anal sex for women. (Or contact me to purchase a copy.) There's a LOT to know about anal, it can be way fun!
Tiger Woods. The only thing that baffles me about that whole situation is why he even bothered to get married in the first place. If you didn't want a monogamous relationship, why did you marry her? Did she pressure you? Make threats? That's no better than cheating, so it seems to me that they could very well both be in the wrong here.
Either way, this whole thing could have been headed off at the pass if they had both been honest with each other, no matter how much it hurts.
And for the record, I'm a guy who is utterly grossed out by feet. Toes in particular. I would rather eat shit or fuck a dog than suck on some toes. So all you people talking about how it's not really that bad? For some people, it can be. Ultimatums are BS, but if I were given one I'd have to say goodbye. I can be GGG in almost any area except that, and for all we know, so is this woman. Maybe she'd be willing to spank him, change his diaper, peg him, pick up strange so he can beat it furiously later for him, but this one thing is just over the limit. Everyone's got different limits.
@132, will you marry me? We can happily wear socks together forever. ;)
This attitude -- obviously shared by SFF's girlfriend -- seems to be pretty typical of women. I can guarantee that a MUCH higher percentage of men than women are into feet in a sexual context (and perhaps also in just admiring them aesthetically.) Why what is, I'm not sure, especially since, in most cases, guys probably just want to suck their woman's toes, or lick their woman's feet. They're likely not expecting or demanding reciprocation.
If I was with a woman who had nasty, gnarly toes, I'd probably be turned-off at the idea of sucking them, but why on earth would I be repulsed if she really got off on wanting to suck mine?
I've been intimate with about 30 women. Of those, I wanted to suck the toes of only about half and most of them didn't want me to do it. One of them loved the feeling and really got off on it. Not a single one of those women wanted to suck my toes (and my feet aren't gnarly.)
I think this ties in with what Dan said in a column about ten years ago: "It's a sad fact that men are more likely to be kinky than women." I'd be curious if there's one kink (besides, perhaps, fantasy vampirism) that women are more into than men.
Personally, I think that men have a lower "gross threshold" than women do, and that it's probably due to nature more than nuture. I think that women tend to view things like toe sucking, armpit licking, butt licking, peeing -- and, at the more extreme end, shitting (something that I find disgusting) -- as more gross than men do. Just look at all the videos out there of women peeing, that lots of men are looking at. Are there lots of videos of men peeing that women are looking at? I doubt it.
And I can't help it, that attitude makes me laugh (and 100-to-1 says you're a woman.) I can see being grossed out by the feet of some people, perhaps even most people...but ALL feet? A woman's feet that are nicely-shaped and pedicured are beautiful and sexy. They're just as much of a work of art as a lovely pair of hands. And I'm sure there are gay men that feel the same way about the feet of some men.
My guess is that guys like Tiger want both: they want to be married (for the sake of having kids, for stability, or for some other reasons) but also want to continue to fuck other women. And if a man is honest with a woman and says, "Sweetheart, I really want to marry you but I can't promise to be monogamous" then, in probably 99% of the cases, she'll say "Adios", so of course he's going to promise to be faithful.
I could be (and would willingly be) proven wrong but I think that a study would show that men and women who are very desirable (handsome high-status men and hot sexy women) and are married cheat more than married men and women who are not that desirable. Why? Because I believe that cheating is largely a function of opportunity. Sure, personal ethics plays a role -- I'm sure there are very desirable husbands and wives who get a lot of offers but never give in to temptation, just as there are fat & homely husbands and wives who cheat -- but I think, in general, the more desirable you are and the more temptation you get, the morely likely you are to cave.
While it's typically women who feel this way about feet, you're evidence that it's not limited to them. You'd really rather eat shit than suck on toes? I highly doubt that, given that choice in reality, you'd choose to eat shit but, assuming you really would, it's fascinating to me that someone can find feet and toes THAT horribly repulsive. Did your grandmother constantly rub her smelly feet in your face when you were young or something? Did a pair of feet steal all your toys? Or kill your pet dog?
Then you also have animals that are "obligate monogamous", such as beavers. Beavers are monogamous; however, the only reason why they are, is because the cooperation between both parents is necessary for the survival of the offspring. Beavers need a division of labour between mama and papa, in order for their offspring to live (what the hell is a baby beaver called?) Marking their territory, maintaining their dam, raising their young, defending themselves from threats ... it's too much for one beaver to handle, so they mate for life.
I do not know how to end this comment, so I will just point out how pretty gibbons are: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2163/1735…
Civilization also isn't natural or easy, but it is one of things that sets us apart from the animals (human and otherwise). It requires sacrifices and delayed gratification. I'm just trying to put things into perspective. There should be things more important than sex in a person's life. There are angels and demons in everyone, our ability to control the latter is what makes us human beings, not merely homo sapiens.
Just a note. I don't know the whole story or anything. But it doesn't seem fair to assume that she's being selfish.
Did you mean all humans are wired to cheat or not? Assuming you meant all when you said 'people' followed by 'we':
Monogamy isn't natural... for everyone??? People are wired to cheat? Cite (a study, not People magazine and not yerself) or it doesn't exist.
I agree a vast majority of humanity is constantly looking for a better / newer / hotter mate and that many can claim certain instincts and darwinistic theories propel their libidos to change the sex channel every now & then: HOWEVER, I fully believe that just like some creatures in the animal kingdom mate for life, so do some select portions of humanity.
I have a couple of friends, and they've been models-of-monogamy together for more than 2 decades, now. They set an example for those around them about how love/relationships aren't to be phoned in or taken for granted, but improved upon, worked on, weekly. Yet, they are effortless about it. More than a few of us are fucking envious. They grow constantly and learn incessantly and seem to those of us in awe that they actually fall more in love as the years pass. Fucking saps. Yet, I would wish no two people to have more happiness and great years than them, and I sincerely hope they decide to raise a brood someday of equally well-adjusted, and truthfully loving progressives. SOME people are wired that way, too.
Just like how US Presidents don't HAVE to be dickhead old white men from Mayflower bloodlines, I'm grateful more than just one whitewashed, bitter, bitchy version of 'relationship truth' exists. It gives hope.
People cheat because monogamy isn't natural and we are wired to cheat. That doesn't make cheating right, of course; people should honor their commitments, and blah-de-nine-iron-blah. But we shouldn't encourage people to make commitments we all know they're unlikely to keep. The end.
Can't SFF get himself a cyberskin foot and everybody's (moderately) happy?? Or take a hotfoam casting of HER foot?
Also, your anti- co-dependency subtext of 'worrying about your partner's feelings' isn't always part of monogamy either: some worry about their own... (whaddya call 'em...?) ethics. Pride. Personal choices. Honor. Promises.
Open your mind enough to see that some people in humanity aren't ruled by libido, fear or whim, but by conscious intelligent thought and reason, or gawd forbid, honesty & emotion. Your (and Dan's) "sticking to your choice" line sounds just like the claim many churches make about homosexuality supposedly being a phase/choice, rather than a way some people are wired.
@22, @81, et al: Some facts for you: over 90% of avian species are socially monogamous and 10% are also sexually monogamous. 3% of mammals are sexually monogamous and 15% of primates are socially monogamous. Based on observation as well as genetic testing of offspring. So, while still a minority, monogamy exists quite frequently in the animal world. Add also: British Spiny Seahorse, Fairy-Wren, Corvus corax, and the gay penguins at the Central Park Zoo.
@142 I comfort my partners when they are upset for any reason. It could have to do with work, family, health, or yes, other partners. It's called being supportive and I'm happy to do it!
Whatever! I'm a guy and I used to find cunnilingus a turn-off and disgusting. I adopted a similar aversion tactic with my girlfriend: I knew she wanted it, but I didn't do it, and she was too polite to push the issue.
Thankfully, I saw the error of my ways and got over it. Otherwise, I'd be going against one of Dan's cardinal rules ("Oral comes standard.")
I think it's less to ask of someone to put their feet in someone's mouth or on someone's genitalia than it is to demand that they put their mouth on someone's junk:
You put your tongue on a guy's dick, the guy puts his tongue on your pussy, what's so bad about putting your foot on his dick? Jeez...
If she has a problem with it, then that deserves to be respected. If she's TOTALLY AND 100% NOT INTO IT, then they should break up. But honestly, I think that this aversion is something that could be worked through if taken slowly.
Having said that, there are a couple of sexual things I absolutely could not do or watch. These are deal-breakers for me and if a lover absolutely has to have these, it can't be with me.
I've known I had this fetish since puberty, which allows me to screen potential mates based on their affinity for letting me indulge. That guy should have known, after one week let alone four years, that she's not into it. He should have moved on then. I've learned this about women and my foot fetish: there are probably 10 women who love getting foot massages, toes sucked, and giving footjobs to every 1 who detest it. When I meet someone and things go serious, I "test the waters" if she lets me go down on her feet and toes. If she recoiles, then it's usually "nice to know ya". You'll always know as soon as you move your hands down to give her a massage. Watch her reaction. Body language speaks the most here. I don't care if she's Brangelina and can suck a grapefruit through a garden hose. No toes, no thanks.
If you're a woman with a man with a foot fetish, but you don't find it disgusting (and at the same time it doesn't get you off) then let him go at it. You can read a magazine or watch TV while you get the best foot massage you've ever had. And let him suck on your toes - I've converted several women from the "I don't care for it" to "must have my toes sucked". My advice: during missionary, as soon as you are about to climax, stick your toes in his mouth and ride the monster wave.
Your girlfriend probably doesn't want you licking her feet because she thinks it's gross. She doesn't feel her feet are attractive, and she doesn't feel that they are clean.
Here's my advice. Buy her a really nice pedicure. Then- run her a nice bubble bath.
Make love right afterward. Tell her her feet look amazing with the polish and that they are so clean and pretty- and you really want to make love to them right now.
Show her how much you love her by kissing her toes. Progress to licking or sucking on them, or whatever you want to do.
Take it slow, so that you don't alarm her. You are basically just getting her to feel comfortable with it.
Take this advice from me, because I am a girl- and I don't find my feet particularly attractive.
Oh- and don't forget the rest of her as well. You should make it a whole-body experience!
I see a substantive (and not gender-based) difference between assaulting someone in the context of an ongoing relationship, and assaulting someone in the context of a nasty breakup (even if it is followed by reconciliation).
The former is... perverting the presumed love and trust of a relationship by introducing violence. The second is merely overreacting to whatever stimulus instigated the breakup (usually the abuse-ee being a PoS in some way).
It's a bit like the difference between punching your friend in the stomach, or punching the guy who stole your lunch money in the stomach...
Thank God for Dan Savage!
Brandy, stright from the bible belt
Now I'm a man that doesn't think that being monogamous is impossible and we are all capable of being so, but monogomy can eventually become monotonous if we are not willing to try new things(sexual & non). However, if one knows within oneself that he/she can't resist the temptation of cheating on someone they supposedly love then it's best to break things off first.
I'm 23 now, and I was also in a 4 year relationshp that lasted until I was 22. My ex and I had an amazing sex life and we were open with eachother to try different things. However, I often fantasized of doing other things with other women while having sex with her. Although this started to happen more and more, I never cheated on her. Not only do I think it's wrong, but karma's a bitch and I'd be hurt if someone I loved did that to me.
I also happen to like women's feet as long as they're clean, pretty, well manicured, soft and smooth, and don't have a bad odor. I actually grew up thinking I was wierd for having this fetish and afraid to try it, because I had never really heard of many people who were into feet like that. That was until I looked it up online and found tons of FF sites. I tried it out on my girl and she really liked it, especially when I sucked on her toes while bangin' her back out. That would drive her insane!
So with all that said, it just depends on how open we are with eachother and how important certain things are in our relationships. If there are certain things that two people may not agree on to the point where it takes a toll on their relationship, they may just not be compatable for eachother. Hopefully they can figure this out before they spend several years together.
As I stated earlier, I have never cheated on any woman. I have been single for over a year and have had a number of flings, but I'm completely honest with them and they know that it's just a fling. When I find someone who I feel a deeper connection with, then I will exculsively be with that person.