Savage Love

Toy Boy



@100 philosophy school dropout: WA-HOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Big time congratulations on scoring this week's Big Hunsky @100 honors! Relish your newfound good fortune and savor the riches. :)

Griz is playing catch-up today from having to stay in hibernation the last few days. As a safety precaution I cancelled appointments and kept my computer shut off, due to inclement weather conditions Wind chill factors here are below zero and wind gusts have been up to 50 mph----UGH! I'm ready for spring, when I can retrieve my beloved Love Beetle out of winter storage and hit the beaches again.
In the meantime, everyone stay warm and safe----Snowmageddon 2021 is coming!


@103: Clarification: ....hit the beaches--while masked, social distancing, keeping my hands washed, and once we have the safe travel go ahead from Governor Jay Inslee, of course.. :)


@103 i'm excited to see some snow on the ground. but it is certainly very cold outside for these parts. brrrrrr!


@105 philosophy school dropout: Brrrr, indeed! Stay bundled up. Be careful, too, about possible rockslides on hillsides once the snow and ice have melted. Chuckanut Drive (a.k.a. SR11), near where I live can be especially treacherous along the sea cliffs, however picturesque during the warmer months.

What to do while snowbound? Compose and play music, games,----and movies!


@106 i tromp around in the snow as much as i can w/ my dog. and i smoke extra pot. this year i might take the cross country skis out too. it feels like it has been forever since we had snow in seattle. btw/ i love the area around chuckanut. great hikes, beautiful water & i dig bellingham as a town too.


@107 philosophy school dropout: I agree. Chuckanut Drive is lovely--especially when you're not particularly in a hurry. But I do not advise cruising it right now.

Another night of music, games, and movies for Griz while her beloved VW is safely tucked away, asleep indoors for the winter.
Tonight, in a belated birthday tribute to iconic film composer, John Williams, who turned 89 on Monday, February 8, 2021, and because I LOVE conducting the score to it (!!) I will be watching and conducting "The Witches of Eastwick" . And because I adore Susan Sarandon, Cher, and Michelle Pfieffer, and could not help myself but prepare a batch in a slight tribute to Jack Nicholson, co-starring as Daryl Van Horne (and to ward off the late Alfred Hitchcock), deviled eggs are among the hors d'oeuvres.


Alison @99, the real problem as I read it is, "My husband and I can't agree on how to approach a problem with our son. Now I'm second guessing my instincts and I'd like you, Dan, a sex positive columnist, to endorse my solution and help my husband get over his squick."

Griz @103, stay warm and safe! We had an unprecedented several days of snow in a row here in London, perfect weather for not leaving the house. Warmer temps are on the horizon and I'm looking forward to getting out, if just to take a bike ride.


Honestly I'm a little shocked how much anger is directed at the son in first letter. I mean people are saying he needs to be slapped or sent off the therapy for checks notes being a teenager.

I mean I really doubt the kid is disabled, masturbating to thoughts of his parents getting on. He's horny, he's self-centered, and he doesn't have his own sex toys. Solution, get him a sex toy with the provision that he keeps his hands off the LW's.

I mean yeah there are cases where strict discipline is necessary but I don't think this isn't one of them.


@109 BiDanFan: Sending big cyber hugs, positrons, and VW beeps---stay warm and safe there, too, in the U.K.! Brrrr!---we're under at least 6" of snow here, and it's still coming down. I know my beloved Love Beetle is happy to be safely tucked away inside a friend's garage.
I haven't left my apartment except to take my recyclables out to the bins, equipped with Yak Trax strapped to my boots for traction. It's good that February is a short month----My VW and I are both ready for spring. At least I have been playing music---all instruments, including my piano. Physical therapy sessions have gotten better.


@99. alison cummins. I'm not sure she's holding something back. She could think it inappropriate, in effect, to reward her son's intrusion and removal of a sensitive items by buying toys for her. She could think it inappropriate or intrusive to get involved in his sex life by gifting toys. Both of these things are entirely plausible, and they would both explain her letter.

They've been parents for sixteen years but for only the last four or them or so have they had to reckon with their son being a sometimes awkward sexual person. I don't think an adolescent going into their parents' bedroom so odd, especially if there's a younger child or that's where the family watch television. But he's twice crossed a line messing with the sex toys.

If the boy has a range of behavioral difficulties e.g. has melthdowns, is stroppy, has trouble concentrating in class, jeopardises friendships by impulsive actions, it wouldn't make sense to me for a parent to contact Dan, the sexpert, merely on the sexual issue or dysfunction. They would know he potentially had a slate of behaviors, which required an integrated approach in management. And if the mother knows she has something to hide, something that goes beyond her son's sexual importunity or inappropriateness, I don't think she's say--there would be issues of shame, guilt, embarrassment, a desire for privacy, and a general disinclination to air dirty laundry. So if there is a deeper theme or tendency here, as you suspect, it's more likely something MIH isn't fully aware of herself.


Harriet @98: "A 16yo boy taking his mother's dildo is well within the range of normal."

His taking it for use as a prop whilst video sexting would be one thing (well within the range of possibilities for poor teenage judgement and impulse control), but wanting to suck it or sit on it would be a whole other kettle of nasty, nasty fish... because it's his mommy's dildo. Privacy and property rights are not the problem here.


@96. There are people who want to see if they can get a letter published in Dan’s column so they make up one? What kind of people? Well 16 year old boys, for one.


Kids these days learn about sex and sex toys much earlier than we did. I think finding a dildo would be "confusing" or gross and weird to 16 year old me. But we also had to raid our older brothers rooms to find porn, we didn't have ready access to it on the internet and so on. The idea that this kid did it to be funny-ha-ha sounds more reasonable the more I think about it. He wouldn't be intimidated or be seeing one for the first time anymore.


Are we even sure that squicked-out dad had a conversation with the son? If he's feeling more awkward/uncomfortable about the situation than MIH is, he may not exactly have tackled that conversation head-on. And if the son isn't actually * using * the toys (MIH said she found the toys "where they don't belong" but said nothing about evidence of her son actually using the toys), he may be properly alarmed/humiliated if he realizes his mom thinks he's using them and finally leave them alone? Sorry, MIH, but this sounds like a awkward conversation that's going to awkwardly fall on your shoulders.


@117 fox
If the son didn't take them to use them, I think it might even be more outside the "range of normal". I mean, if instead of inserting them he's just smelling them or whatever to fantasize about his mom.

Thank goodness (if) the letter is fake.


There are so many scenarios to consider in MIH's letter. I'm assuming the letter is real, because otherwise there's no point in these little thought exercises.
Here are some I've thought of:

1). Son is using Mom's and Dad's sex toys as a masturbatory aid. Son is not really considering where they came from, or who ordinarily uses them or how (horniness trumps pre-fontal cortex). First Dad alone, then Mom and Dad together have a not-very effective talk with Son. This could be because the horniness factor overrides everything else. Although it appears that this letter was written shortly after the dildo incident, and maybe the message got through at last.

2). Son is using Mom's and Dad's sex toys as a masturbatory aid. Son is not really considering where they came from, or who ordinarily uses them or how (horniness trumps pre-fontal cortex). Dad is supposed to have spoken to Son after the first incident, both because it was his toy that Son took and because as the same-gender parent, it was deemed that he should be the one to take on this uncomfortable task. But Dad was too squicked out to have that talk, leading to Son's pilfering of Mom's dildo. Maybe now that both of them talked with the Son, the message landed, possibly because Mom seems like someone who is more comfortable talking about sex with her teenage son, and may have delivered the message more clearly and forcefully.

3). Son is fucking with Mom and Dad for the fun of it:
3a) Son really took Dad's handheld sex toy for the reason posited above (desperate horniness), but thought watching Dad squirm through the conversation was really hilarious, so he took Mom's dildo as a way to prank/troll the parents.
3b). Son took both sex toys as a way to prank/troll his parents. He knows perfectly well that sex toys are private and is having a laugh at how upset Mom and Dad are.

4). Son has some sort of intellectual disability or development issue, and genuinely doesn't realize that other people's sex toys should be off-limits. The fact that the father had to explain (or was sent to explain) that "these are personal items, like a toothbrush, and that he needed to stop taking them," seems odd when we're talking about a 15-16-year-old. So maybe this is a combination of 'horniness-plus-ignorance,' more than 'horniness-plus-too-much-horniness-to-stop-and-think,' or 'ha-ha: watch Mom and Dad freak out!'

4). Son took the items deliberately for masturbation, but is also getting off on the transgressive-ness of the situation. Although very horny, he never lost sight of the fact that these sex toys belong to his parents, but there's something extra-exciting about using someone else's stolen sex toys; he's really a Bad Boy. After Dad talked with him about using his (Dad's) toy, he (Son) needed to up the transgression-ante, and he took Mom's toy.

5). (Definitely the most heebie-jeebie-inducing of the theories): Son is getting off thinking about his parents having sex or thinks about having sex with one or both of his parents. I don't honestly think this is it, but maybe that's because I really hope that's not the case.

Alternately, 6). Son isn't using the sex toys as sex toys. Maybe he doesn't know what they are. This is almost impossible to believe, but if there's an atypical developmental issue, it's maybe possible.

I really wish that MIH had given us and Dan a bit more to work with. She says that these toys weren't where they were supposed to be, but not where they were found or if they were found in a way that would help her (and us) understand why Son took them.

I understand why Dad is squicked at the thought of buying Son a sex toy, but surely that's less squick-inducing than wondering whether you're sharing your sex toys with your child.


Curious @118, I think it's totally within the range of normal for a kid to prank his parents by stealing a dildo of theirs and hiding it, imagining their consternation when they can't find it. Far more normal than to steal it and use it, given that this is an insertion toy, and not many 16-year-old boys, I would imagine, would be into sticking things up their bums. Some, surely, but far less than the number who are into silly pranks.

Nocute @119, good point that not enough time has gone by to know whether kid got the message. You're right that there are many possibilities, and also right that Dad may not have had the talk he said he had. I can definitely see scenario 2 or 3a: the kid thought it was hilarious watching Dad squirm his way through a sex-related conversation and wanted to put him through more of that awkwardness by doing it again.


@120 BDF
"prank his parents by stealing a dildo of theirs and hiding it, imagining their consternation when they can't find it"

I agree that is a non-abnormal explanation I had not thought of. (In that scenario the kid could be suppressing their squick during the hiding.)

But do you really think that's a likely explanation?


@114. Fubar. It's not in his mind that it's Mommy's dildo--perhaps. His parents bought it twenty years ago on a trip to Cancun before he was even born and it's lain moldering in a drawer ever since. Your parents aren't sexual at 16. You're the sexual one! (Perhaps).

@116. Endless-ork. After fingers, I moved on to e.g. the handle of sink plungers up my butt. I would have taken a sex-toy at 16. I would also not have connected my mother with a sex-toy e.g. my father had bought it home and it had grossed her out. Another thought is that I wish I had had butt-plugs in my teens (however I got them, whoever gave them to me).

@117. Fantastic. We don't know whether he's said any more than, 'hey, that's private!'

@119. Nocute. 4) is the least plausible to me, because 'that's private!' supposes an understanding of why a sex toy is private, rather than seeks to establish it with someone with different cognitive endowments (e.g. a learning disability) or a different or non-normative sense of the personal and private (e.g. Asperger's). Also, it's the kind of half-hearted semi-engagement you might expect from a guy not used to talking about sex with teens.

Last, and to make a general point, I note that three people either on the spectrum or with some experience of interacting intimately with people on the spectrum--me, JohnHorstman and BiDanFan--saw and felt no squick at all in the lw's wiping the toy down and continuing to use it. Other people said to give the toy to the son or throw it away. There is a huge overlap between normativity in gender expression (especially as this is the field of shame, embarrassment and a sense of righteousness) and neurotypicality.


Interesting stuff here.

On the teenage son stealing sex toys, I fall into both camps. He wants to explore his sexuality with toys. If he came to me as a parent without the background theft, I would get him the gift card and talk to him about sex, masturbation, toys, boundaries, sexual ethics, and etc. I think it is good parenting to do that anyway, regardless of circumstances. But I would also impose a separate punishment for theft and ignoring our "don't do this remonstrance". It would not involve sex though, but rather loss of electronic or car privileges, or grounding. Separate the two issues: parenting a kid experimenting with sex, and parenting a kid stealing from you and failing to follow your rules, for your kid's mental and sexual health and development.

I think Harriet and Fox were spot on and also very generous to Raging. He has low interpersonal skills at best. Raging makes it sound like a two month relationship is an incredible accomplishment, and maybe for him it is. But the emotional and relationship immaturity, apparent anger issue, unrealistic expectations, possible double standard, and tantrum-y ranting are something he should have grown out of 5-7 years earlier in his relationship development process. If he's at this level of discontent/divergency two months in, the adult thing is to end the relationship. He needs to work on himself before doing any more grown-up dating. If he has BPD or something similar, he needs ongoing work. Granted, even in this millenium, suppressing or hiding one's own sexuality in middle school, high school and even college, results in social delays in how one handles oneself in a relationship - one has to play catch-up when one finally begins dating, but that doesn't seem to be what's happening here.

Of course, as I always say, VGL people are at a handicap in learning ethics and successful relationship give-and-take because from a young age, they are forgiven transgressions and meanness because of their attractiveness. This young man sounds very much as though he has this disability.


Curious @121, if I didn't think it was a likely explanation, I wouldn't have made the suggestion. Can't you see a teenager doing this?

Harriet @122, I agree with you. At 16 I thought dildoes were comedy-value novelties like rubber chickens, not things people pleasured themselves with. Though today's teenagers are most likely far less naive.
I thought Nocute's #4 scenario was plausible.
I would chalk my lack of squick at shared sex toys more up to my being poly, and also my being removed from the American obsession with excessive hygiene, than to being with someone who is on the spectrum. In the poly community sharing of genitals is expected, sharing of toys is also expected; certainly a person may sometimes buy a toy they want used only on/by them, but they will make that clear. If I buy a dildo and harness, any of my partners who want to be pegged are fair game. And nobody has ever asked me whether my dildo is a virgin.
I did say the toy should be given to the son and a demand made to replace it, but that was to teach him to leave other people's things alone (a consequence), not because I consider the toy unusable by anyone else. I also consider the toy to have possibly or probably not been up his butt. It's the principle of the thing, that principle being don't borrow things without asking, you didn't learn that the first time, now learn with your wallet.

Alanmt @123, good points.


@124 BDF
I can see a teenager doing it, but I think it is unlikely. Sure teenagers want to cause "consternation"[@120], but all the other things they could be hiding aren't things that call to mind something most teenagers won't want to think about for a fraction of a second. I think that in order for more teenagers to pick this particular thing to hide anyway, they would have to have some targeted reason, for example some resentment towards their parents' sex life.


@125 correction
"in order for more" should be "in order for most"

(once again my fingers typed the wrong word; which is /so/ much worse than a typo)


@124. Bi. I don't think you are on the spectrum--you once said that you dated someone on the spectrum. I don't show up as such, but this may be because I'm well-adapted. I did a 'Masters' / field exam type paper on sexual and gender non-normativity of guys with Asperger's, and in a way that would be recognised as wrong now, understood any sort of genderqueerness as queerness (as if some gay men aren't proudly cis...). Though it was mostly ethnography, my idea was that aspies do not feel ashamed of non-normative gender presentation / identity or sexual identity to anything like the degree neurotypicals do. It's not a shame I understand myself.


Curious @125, I guess we'll never know his motive.

Harriet @127, yes, I correctly read you as including me in your list because my partner is autistic, not because I am: "I would chalk my lack of squick at shared sex toys more up to my being poly... than to being WITH someone who is on the spectrum." And indeed, having a close relationship with someone who runs on this particular operating system I can see it has advantages over being neurotypical. For instance, the idea that tact and hints are a ridiculous concept and people should say what they mean instead of worrying about hurting feelings. I do think that if we all approached life this way, there would be fewer misunderstandings, possibly to the point that agony uncles would be out of a job!