Savage Love

Dumplings

Comments

1

I can't be Firdt??

2

Dan, you need to implement a new acronym - RFYFL - Run For Your Fucking Life. Please apply it immediately to LW's 1 and 3. You can even use it alongside your current invention. Example - "DTMFA and RFYFL"

3

Screw the cheese pizza. I'm having a lamb shank dripping in gravy with carrots and potatoes dripping in butter.

4

I feel bad for all three letter writers, because to an impartial observer the obvious answer is that they need to break up with their shitty abusive partners. I guess it's good that Dan bundled their bummer letters so we could get the bummers out of the way all at once. I imagine Dan's mailbag is always packed with letters like this from people on the journey to letting go of their unhealthy partners.

I think "never been sick a day in my life!" EDGE should contact the CDC. Maybe she is the secret to a cure for Covid-19. Hint: it's not veganism. No diet grants one comprehensive immunity.

5

@4 Not true. My Lithium Battery Diet means I'll never get sick.

6

Was veganism even a thing in the late 60s? When EDGE was 13? How can one maintain a vegan diet while raising three kids in the, presumably, 80s? (I became a vegetarian in 1988 and that was hard enough.) There may be no cows involved here but I detect a slight whiff of bullshit. Anyway, all three of these LWs need to run for their fucking lives from these hypocritical MFs.

7

It kind of amazes me that any of the Letter Writers actually sent their letters. I have more than once written a letter to Dan (usually in my head, but I've started typing a few times) and then realized once I had the problems listed, that the only advice to give is DTMFA.

To be fair though, I haven't always been so good with the follow through and bringing myself to do it, but I definitely didn't need to send the letter to know that I should. So, Letter Writers, please take Dan's advice -- every time I realized that Dan would say DTMFA, and I didn't, I definitely should have. Good luck to you all!

8

BiDanFan @6: Veganism was invented in 1944, but was limited to pompous, self-righteous English "societies" until the 2010s, when pomposity went mainstream and virtue signalling became imperative; the Internet's final triumph.

How can you tell if someone is Vegan? No need. They'll tell you.

9

I would argue that being vegan is not necessarily healthy. French fries, potato chips, most white bread, and a lot of store bought cookies are vegan. Plain yogurt, farm fresh eggs, and wild Alaska salmon are not. For examples. But I catch colds, so what do I know?

Also, a chronically ill meat eater who looks her age should not marry LW 3's fiance either.

10

I wish this week’s letters would offer some room for discussion. Maybe have one of them as “entertainment” with two others that do carry some nuance, ambiguity, and interest.
European nations football/soccer starts on Friday. Go Finland!

11

FET~ Run like the wind, Bullseye!

JOKES~
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUG9VzHoEoc

EDGE~
get the fuck out
1. rude slang An angry imperative for someone to leave, leave one alone, or stop what they is doing.
“If he’s going to make snarky comments about my food, then he can just get the fuck out.”

“... stop what they is doing...” I guess that’s what I get for using thefreedictionary.com

12

If Mr Savage were ever to have another television programme, it should be a formulaic one in which he showed up at people's homes or workplaces and told the intended helpee of the week that he'd come to help facilitate a long overdue dumping (although it's also tempting to envision a Dump or Marry? format).

These letters leave me speechless, quite speechless, and I could keep talking about them for a long time (shades of Miss Bates as played by Ms Thompson, S). For this evening, though, I'll content myself with saying that, if LW2 absolutely must keep living with BF2 and keeping his secret, when they are around their COMMON friends, one would certainly understand if LW2 were to yield to the temptation to invent a boyfriend that none of the Commons knew and tease the company with little tidbits about him. The exercise could even be framed as fortification of the closet. Of course, it would probably be too detrimental to LW2's character to make such conduct worth recommending, but BF2 would deserve to be on the receiving end.

13

@1 Nativespeaker: WA-HOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Congratulations on scoring this week's highly and competitively sought after FIRDT! Award honors, leading the comment thread! Savor your newfound accolades and bask in the glory. :)

14

FET; Exactly as Dan says--dump his ass! You should never be ashamed of your sexual needs and passions. You deserve better.

JOKES: Agreed and seconded with Dan--DTMFCCA. HIs openly insulting you for being out, just to cover up his closeted, chickenshitted little ass in front of others is just as inexcusable as a closeted gay guy who tries to trap a cis woman (or a closeted lesbian who tries to trap a cis-man) into marriage with children under equally false pretenses.

omg--EDGE--DON'T marry this guy! Run like the WIND! He's already hired someone to spy on you. He's an emotional abuser out to fully use and control you. Get out of that situation now and don't look back. Do you have a good support network (close family members, friends, trusted neighbors, healthcare facilities, financial and legal assistance if necessary, etc.) to help prevent any further problems with this guy if he tries to stop you from leaving? Block his number, make sure you have all your important paperwork (ID, financial accounts, passports, driver's license, SSN#, valuable possessions, etc.) and RUN.

15

When a LW describes someone who is at best a cruel sociopath but then says "but otherwise they're good," my brain hears "Sure, she murdered a bunch of puppies to make it, but damn that's a nice coat."

16

If I was LW2, I'd be really tempted, the next time he says something nasty to me in front of his friends, to say "Look, Daniel, I'm sick of this. Just come out of the closet already. Admit that you and I are boyfriends". No it's not good to out someone, but this is a real toxic soup and the stupid thing about it all is that his friends have probably already guessed. Why they listen to someone abusing his boyfriend without interjecting, I don't know. Maybe they are shitty people.

17

Fubar @8, not true. I met my first vegan in the US in the early 90s. I remember how impressed I was with her being able to avoid all dairy products; it was difficult enough to avoid things like chicken stock and gelatine in vegetarian-appearing grocery products. She must have cooked everything from scratch. Why do vegans tell you they are vegan? Because they have to, otherwise you'll serve them things they can't eat. Duh. Vegans are more ethical than you or me, and I support them completely.

CMD @10, I agree, not much here that is controversial. One tangent I identified was: Was FET justified in snooping? Dan says no. The rationale being that she already knew her partner was an asshole, so she should have just skipped straight to dumping him. I'd point out that the same can generally be said in any snooping situation. If you feel you can't believe what your partner tells you and have to snoop, your relationship is already doomed. Either it's doomed because they can't be trusted or because you are a privacy-violating snoop and/or someone with irrational trust issues; we won't know which unless you discover actual wrongdoing, which would retroactively justify the snooping. So, given that Dan's observation applies to all snooping, yet some snooping is considered justifiable, was FET's? I would say yes. Her partner denied her right to privacy yet kept things from her. He violated her privacy first; her snooping was merely to expose him as a hypocrite, a discovery she needed to make to see who he really is.

Venn @12, so JOKES should go Bunburying? And make his stories so accurate even the boyfriend began to wonder if he was cheating. Being closeted is one thing; being closeted AND homophobic is not in good working order. Best revenge fantasy for JOKES could be a good sub-thread.

Mythic @15, good analogy.

18

Reading FET’s letter made me wonder if her and her partner have a D/s dynamic, and what exactly is going on with that. She doesn’t explicitly mention it. But some things in the letter did make me think that he is the dom and she the sub in the relationship. Some of the things FET describes as “double standards” – e.g. different levels of sexual autonomy – are not uncommon in D/s relationships, but obviously this needs to be clearly communicated and willingly embraced by both partners, which doesn’t seem to be the case here.

I’m gonna give FET’s partner a slight benefit of a doubt and offer an alternative read of the letter. Somewhat speculatively, I’m reading FET as a switch (submissive/ bottom to her current partner but also into cuckolding porn, which typically features some expression of female dominance). I’m reading her partner as a closet switch and probably a closet bisexual, someone who presents as a straight dom and keeps his submissive and MM desires on the DL. He probably “doth protest too much” when he’s yucking her yum about cuckolding porn. It’s possible that, because they started off as a casual hook-up (presumably with lots of time apart), and then just fallen into a full-on relationship and a live-in situation, they never had a proper conversation about their needs and boundaries, and are now struggling to transition their bedroom-only, fantasy-style D/s to a relationship context. The boyfriend probably never planned to come out to FET, and is now desperately trying to hide this whole side of his sexuality behind a D/s façade, which just comes out as controlling douchebag behaviour.

This might be a generous read of the situation, but something about “we are both scared the relationship will end” made me think that maybe this guy isn’t beyond redemption. If he genuinely loves and cares about FET, but is sabotaging the relationship because of his sexual identity issues, it’s possible that an LGBT-friendly, kink-friendly couples counsellor might be able to help. He should also pursue individual therapy, as there’s no excuse for being shitty to your partner, whatever your personal hang-ups. Of course, another read could be that he is a narcissistic, manipulative arsehole, and pulling at FET’s heartstrings by pretending to be “scared the relationship will end” is all part of his emotional abuse.

19

BDF @17, thanks for sticking up for vegans! I'm not a vegan myself, but I agree that this is a more ethical choice which deserves respect, not mockery. Sure, I've met some annoying holier-than-thou vegans, but I've met many more annoying meat-eaters, who respond to any mention of someone else's veganism or vegetarianism with tired jokes and defensive monologues about how yummy meat is and how they would never-ever give it up. Like, who cares, dude? My vegetarianism has nothing to do with you. I mean, I love cake, but I don't go on about it when someone says they're on a diet.

20

I'm a kinky lady and I have never heard of a good and healthy relationship being found on fetlife. This website is like a magnet for the abusive, jerks and ladies who lack boundaries because they don't know better. There's much better places when it comes to finding kinky people who will treat you nicely. Avoid fetlife.

21

Ms Syrup - The common friends are probably almost all "tolerant". BF2 seems too scared to befriend anyone gay-positive, and LW2 sadly manifests embracing unequal treatment. I've known plenty of people who genuinely pride themselves on turning the seventieth cheek and "reaching out to the other side" in which they make 95% of the effort for 5% of the benefit and credit. It's sad.
xxx
Ms Fan - A most apt reference. BF2 would deserve it, but it wouldn't be good for LW2's character. I did think of something clever he could write as revenge. The image came to me of the entire common friend group's being closeted; LW2 could write out ways in which each of the commons would get an appropriate comeuppance (say, a child getting rejected by a prestigious school because it gave the spot to someone from a same-sexer household). The idea is based on the film Theatre of Blood, in which a Shakespearean actor played by Vincent Price sets out to settle the score with critics who'd given him bad reviews by killing each of them in a manner fitted to the play in which he'd been panned.

22

patriciav @20, I mostly agree about Fetlife (though there are exceptions), but where are these "much better places" to find "kinky people who will treat you nicely"? Any tips?

I used to recommend using Fet solely to find local kink events, and then meeting people in the real life community, but that hasn't been much of an option for most people in over a year. Incidentally, FET says "I've been living with my boyfriend for a year", which means that their entire live-in relationship has been during the pandemic, and I wonder if that's contributed to the stress and the privacy/ sexual autonomy issues around masturbation, sexting, etc. It's also possible that, when the pandemic hit, they rushed into living together when they weren't ready, because it was either that or be apart and celibate for an indefinite period of time.

23

It also sounds like FET is dealing with the emotional fall-out of her snooping ("I also worry that his "affection" for my black BBW ass may be no different than his objectification of trans women"), which might be good to hash out with a therapist, whether or not she decides to stay with this particular boyfriend. When you are in a minority group that had to deal with being fetishised and objectified, and you find out that your partner ~also~ fetishises people like you (and also people not-like-you), I think it's natural that you might start to doubt your entire relationship. Do they really love and want me as a person, or am I just interchangeable with any other Black/Asian/trans/bi/skinny/fat/disabled woman out there? This is also why it's a bad idea to snoop on your partner's porn history - the acquired knowledge is rarely a pleasant discovery, and you can't un-see it. I really feel for FET, but both her and her boyfriend need to establish some boundaries around solo sex - either together, if they intend on fixing this mess, or separately, for the benefit of their future relationships.

24

Snowflake @7 - I can only recall one letter in the 20 years I've been reading this column wherein the LW, having written their problem out, ended the letter with "you know what, no advice needed, Dan. Clearly I need to DTMF yesterday."

Mr Venn @12 - I would watch the hell out of that show. So many LWs do seem to be essentially asking for moral support to go forward with a hard decision that they've already made, but are struggling to act upon.

Lost Marg @18 - your generous read may indeed be an accurate one (or some overlapping Venn diagram of your read and "Mr. FET is an arsehole"). It certainly gives me a different perspective on the situation. Good catch that they both seem to be vested in keeping the relationship going (which may or may not be good/healthy for either of them).

Also, very good catch @22 that their live-in situation has only been during pandemic times, and that this aspect alone may be massively contributing to their problems. It's been hard enough living with people I love and know very well. If it's affordable for them, it may be good to get separate places while they work their shit out. They may both have a better chance of sorting their issues out (as a couple and as individuals) if they're not dealing with the added stress of living together.

25

The openly gay JOKES has been living with mr closet for two years.

Their mutual friends know perfectly well what’s up.

26

I am so, SO confused about what being vegan had to do with the rest of that letter...

27

BDF @17

"So, given that Dan's observation applies to all snooping, yet some snooping is considered justifiable, was FET's? I would say yes. Her partner denied her right to privacy yet kept things from her. He violated her privacy first; her snooping was merely to expose him as a hypocrite, a discovery she needed to make to see who he really is."

I disagree. If you feel that your partner has violated your privacy, the thing to do is to have a grown-up conversation with your pants on and re-assert your boundaries - or show them the door, if the violation is significant enough or it's not their first offence. I don't see how a violation of privacy can ever justify a return violation of privacy to "expose him as a hypocrite".

The whole "hypocrisy" angle is a red herring in this case, IMO. Would the situation be any different if FET's snooping didn't uncover anything - either because Mr FET didn't masturbate or look at porn, or was better at hiding it? Would FET then be forced to accept his impositions on her fantasies and masturbation routine, because fair-dos, he doesn't get to have any private erotic life either? No. FET would still be justifiably unhappy, he would still be objectively in the wrong, and the relationship advice would still be the same - either break up (as per Dan), or seek counselling and sort out your boundaries (as per my more charitable read).

This, to me, is very different to a situation where you suspect your partner of cheating (for example), and they swear they're not, but you just can't bring yourself to trust them and you don't know if it's because they're gaslighting you or you really are a shitty paranoid person with trust issues. In this case yes, Dan's snooping paradox may apply. If your snooping uncovers infidelity, it is retrospectively justified and would allow you to make decisions with this knowledge. If it doesn't uncover anything, it's not conclusive proof that you are a shitty paranoid person (maybe your partner is just very good at hiding their lies?), but it certainly skews the odds a bit more in that direction. So the situation can look radically different based on the outcome of the snooping, and Dan's retroactive justification is contingent on that.

28

BiDanFan @17: It is true. The term was coined by Dorothy Morgan and Donald Watson in November 1944. Google it. And your experience with vegans is quite different than mine. I'm happy to leave it at that.

29

patriciav @20: I'm not sure about good and healthy relationship being /found/ on fetlife per se, but I know of several that sprang from munches and other events that have their homes on that site.

30

@7: I know. As if they didn't get their letter published with Dan's response they'd still be suffering their tormentors.

31

@26: Absolutely nothing, but as the stereotype goes, she HAD to tell us regardless.

32

HilaryD @26 and Knat @31: My take was that veganism being the fountain of youth is why EDGE looks 40 at 66, which makes her rather more attractive than your typical sexagenarian pizza eater, which in turn exacerbates the impudence of her tormentor. But it doesn't. Nobody deserves or should tolerate such behaviour.

33

I just read the vegan thing in context of LW3 over-emphacising her youthfulness, good health, looks, and/or trendiness, in case Dan felt inclined to tell her to settle for this guy on account of her decrepit old age ;) I don't think he would have, nor do I think 66 is decrepit, but I'm married to a super-hot and super-active older woman who often feels the need to add these types of caveats when she talks about her age, so I understand the impulse. When you've been judged on your age a few too many times, you try to pre-empt it :)

34

Mrs Fox - Quite so; plenty of people would probably benefit from the hand-holding. And Mr Savage might well be at his best in person.

35

I rarely comment here. But the letter by JOKES really pissed me off. Dump that motherfucker and gain some self respect! How could you possibly put up with someone like that? I just have this urge to punch the shit out of the closet-case boyfriend. Being tolerant and letting someone come out at their own pace is one thing, but allowing yourself to be ridiculed by your boyfriend... well maybe Dan’s right and you actually enjoy it.

36

@14: I guess I got a bit emotional in my response. But I can really feel for all three LWs this week.

@15 Mystic Fox: I second BiDanFan--excellent Cruella analogy!

@20 patriciav: Thanks for the warning regarding Fetlife.

@28 fubar: The term vegan and its dietary lifestyle have been around since November, 1944, thanks to Dorothy Morgan and Donald Watson? I didn't know that. I, like BiDanFan (@17) thought it has only been around for the last three decades.
I have to watch my sugar intake and must go gluten free. 20 years ago I would have had to go Erin-go-Bunless at eateries. Nowadays, the good folks at my local community Food Co-op are spoiling me rotten. What I find amazing is that there is so much available in GF and low sugar that is guilt-free and TASTES so delicious now!

37

Cruella DeVil...Cruella DeVil...if she doesn't scare you, no evil thing will....

38

Griz is veering off topic again, but I had to celebrate another celebrity birthday with a film viewing tonight. Michael J. Fox turned 60 (yesterday) on June 9th. Griz enjoyed another viewing of Back to the Future. MIchael J. Fox----another actor who will most likely stay youthful when he's 70---just like Brad Pitt.

39

@Margarita 18 -- I think you are being way too generous to Mr. Fet -- Fet seems to really want Dan to give her a solution other than DTMFA, so I suspect that, if anything, she is making him sound not as bad as he really is, not the vice versa. Also, it is very possible that he is also scared that the relationship will end and truly loves Fet, but even so, it seems that he has too much internalized sexism, jealousy, etc. for the relationship to be salvageable. I am not qualified to really weigh in on D/S dynamics, but I don't think that it is ever ok to cut someone off from their friends of an entire gender. My most recent ex loved me more than anyone but also didn't think it was ok for me to be friends with anyone I had a sexual history with and eventually decided that he didn't believe that I didn't have a sexual history with any of my straight male friends, because men and women can't be friends. Love could not conquer that.

@ Fubar 32 -- That was my take exactly as well. After her self-description, I was expecting Edge's problem to be something like, 'and my partner body shames me,' or 'I can't get a match online dating with any man who isn't 10 years older than me,' or some problem along those lines that was making her feel unattractive or old and had her on the defensive. And so she did kind of weirdly imply that if a less healthy person's bf were a psycho, this would be more acceptable. But she also clearly is in denial about how crazy her fiance is, and I wonder if perhaps he hasn't been subtlety making her feel old and unattractive for the last six years, and this is actually the reason for her listing her virtues.

40

Snowflake @39

"I don't think that it is ever ok to cut someone off from their friends of an entire gender."

I agree, but having re-read the letter, I want to point out that it's actually Dan who said "insisting you cut your male friends and exes out of your life was reason enough to end this relationship". In FET's letter, the wording is much more ambiguous and open to interpretation:

"despite asking me not to text, sext, or have sex with any other men"

In the context of that sentence, I interpreted the request as "I don't want you to text any other men you may wanna hook up with", not "I don't want you to text any men at all, including existing friends".

"he also insists men can't be friends with women yet he's still friends with women he's had sex with"

I agree that this sounds like a pretty sexist viewpoint (although quite common in the hetero world, IME, especially among younger guys), but FET doesn't actually say her boyfriend wouldn't allow her to have platonic male friends, only that HE is still friends with his female exes, which seemingly contradicts his stated view that men can't be friends with women.

... And that's all I could find in the letter itself. So, I dunno. Maybe Dan has more information from the unedited version. Maybe he's just extrapolating. But on second read, there were a number of little things that made me think that FET may have a jealousy/posessiveness issue herself.

41

Griz @36: I hate to break it to you, but red wine is full of sugar. That's why I've never succeeded at a low carb diet.

42

Snowflake @39: “ I am not qualified to really weigh in on D/S dynamics, but I don't think that it is ever ok to cut someone off from their friends of an entire gender.”

A D/s dynamic means giving the /s what they need while letting them believe it’s what the D/ wants which, in the ideal scenario, it is.

Cutting someone off from their friends of an entire gender might be a fun-filled short-term mindfuck, but a D who really wants that is still an insecure, controlling prick.

43

Curious, BiDanFan, and Mrs. Fox, I updated the comments of last thread. :)

Snowflake @7, Raindrop @30 (hey, your names go together!) I've stayed too long in a couple of relationships before. Some people (at least occasionally) need an outside perspective in order to break free, especially if their abuser is gaslighting or manipulative. It can really mess with our perspective!

patriciav @20 Fubar @29 I met my submissive over 2 years ago on Fet, and he's wonderful! We still have conflicts once in a while, but we face them together, as a team. I know some other couples/polycules who are very happy with partner(s) they met on Fet. I agree it's good to tread cautiously, and not dive into a fantasy of someone they haven't met yet!

Lost Margarita @22 Mrs. Fox @24
Yes, the pandemic has been really rough on a lot of relationships, and people's emotional and mental health! I don't think that their issues are caused by the pandemic, though they're probably exacerbated. Now that things are starting to open up, and it's more likely that Fet can find a better living situation, I think it's best she try to move out and move on.

Snowflake @39 Fubar @42
Some submissives/slaves/etc really want and enjoy dynamics that are one-sided and unfair in some aspects, at least some of the time. FET clearly isn't enjoying this, even if she is submissive (she didn't say). I generally agree with Fubar that interfering with sweeping categories of platonic, vanilla friendships is usually a sign of insecurity, jealousy, and other negative things, rather than a healthy D/s relationship.

Personally, what Fubar describes sounds more like "service topping" to me. Nothing wrong with that! I've been a service top in some scenes, and in some relationships. To me, submission is actually about service, wanting control, enjoying the submission in doing things they wouldn't otherwise want/be willing to do.

44

I thought the middle lw dating the closet case could tell him to come out (at 30) or that it's for them.

With the other letters, I could see no reason to dissent from a categorical DTMFA. The first guy cannot own his interests and projects a controlling normativity onto his considerably more evolved and reflective partner. He's probably a mess, rather than an awful or unpleasant person long-term, but he's not on the evidence a good prospect to become a father now. The guy dating the vegan lady who hires the PI is flat-out scary. Run. I thought there had to be comparatively few passable het guys for FET and the last lw to be with the guys they were ... but, whether this is true or not, it's pretty much a fact that they could do better; they should absolutely not let the fear they could not find someone else prevent them take the drastic and painful step of splitting from someone unsuitable.

45

Hillary @26, I agree. She just had to put that humblebrag out there. EDGE, nobody but you and the people you're dining with care what you eat. Glad you look and feel young, here, have an egg-free cookie.

Fubar @28, what's not true is that veganism "was limited to pompous, self-righteous English 'societies' until the 2010s." Perhaps my experience with vegans is different from yours because you take such delight in describing your love of meat to them -- the same behaviour, it would seem, you find so abhorrent when they do it? Whereas I give their choices the respect they deserve.

Margarita @33, good point. EDGE, you clearly will live until 100 or more, so dump this guy, you've got plenty of time to find a better one! And even if you were 66 and a lifelong meat eater with hypertension and gout, you'd deserve better than someone who spied on you and is holding six-year-old e-mails against you. Put your leather-free shoes on and run.

Griz @36: "I, like BiDanFan (@17) thought it has only been around for the last three decades." I didn't think that. I just didn't think veganism was widespread in the late 1960s, when EDGE was thirteen, or that a 13-year-old in 1968 would have been able to convince her parents to indulge her animal-free diet, or that she'd be able to get married and have kids who constantly clamoured for McDonald's (as all kids do) and stick to it the way her letter claims. Being a vegan is hard work! If she has managed it for that long, she deserves the good health she's had. But I think her claim is a bit fishy.

Margarita @40, I read the list which included "text, sext or have sex with" the way Dan did -- communicate, flirt, or have sex with. Either way, what he asked her not to do (text men) he was doing (texting women) so he was out of line.

46

"When someone vomits their shame all over you, getting yourself out of vomit-range is your best option."

This wise phrase of counsel appears to apply not only to FET, but all three LWs this week- down to the letter for JOKES, whose partner doses on mental Ipecac and showers him in the aftermath every time they're in mixed company; and in spirit re: EDGE's abusive surveillance-monger, for people who behave that way are, at core, self-loathing (and potentially dangerous). I hope they all safely find that distance.

47

Opalescent @43: Giving a sub what they need, when what they need is to submit, can certainly include having them do things they wouldn't otherwise want/be willing to do. It can even include not being allowed to interact with other people, but that's within a D/s context (i.e., on Fetlife, at a munch or event; not IRL unless, I suppose, the D/s is 24.7).

48

BDF @45

"...or that a 13-year-old in 1968 would have been able to convince her parents to indulge her animal-free diet, or that she'd be able to get married and have kids who constantly clamoured for McDonald's (as all kids do)"

Maybe there was a religious component? AFAIK Jainists, Baha'i and some Buddhists and Hindus espouse a purely plant-based diet... and there were all sorts of new-agey pseudo-Indian religious cults in the 60s, so it doesn't seem completely improbable. But who knows. I was gonna make some joke about EDGE telling tofurkey pies, but not sure if this would make sense outside of the UK :)

49

Opal @43 - I read your latest contributions to last week's letter. For me, ultimately it was a lack of respecting boundaries, rather than gifts, that chased me off. The fact that this guy also BLEW UP at me when I broke things off after being so honest about not being ready for a relationship just confirmed for me that I'd likely dodged a bullet.

Also @43, agreed that generous reads aside, FET needs to GTFO of this relationship. The guy just sounds like such a hot mess of having not processed his own sexuality and desires, and sounds like he is likely projecting a whole bunch of internal shame onto FET. She needs to get out while she still has some self-esteem to build on.

Alllllso... re-reading FET's letter it jumped out at me that they were initially casual hook-up buddies, until this guy just nutted so much that now you're talking starting a family together?! Omfg, just nooooo. Maybe she simplified the timeline, but if things went from casual kinky sex to "omg, I want to be the father of your children," then kind of shame on both of them for not taking a minute to slow things down and really sort out what they want vs high-on-oxytocin word salad. I know there are some folks who really get off on the "I want to inseminate you/I want to have your babies" thing as sexy talk, but this seems like it escalated things to a level that neither were prepared for (and maybe didn't * actually * want). Did the slut-shaming start before or after the talk of babies? Madonna/whore complex?

50

I wondered if there was a red flag in the "I want to father your children" bit. As a childfree person, though, I figured I was probably biased. Could be cultural? Could be an "I want to be in your life forever" sort of thing? Did she even mention wanting children? Do we have anyone here from the Black community who could clarify if that's considered romantic, if we're taking it too literally, or what?

51

BDF @50 - Funny, I thought maybe I was biased as a not childfree person! Talk of impregnation/babies is the opposite of sexy for me, dredging up memories of stitched-up taints and post-partum depression, though I can understand a kind of lizard brain "omg, it would be so hot to get you pregnant" thought in a hot-and-heavy moment. Any verbalization of such desires would instantly be followed up with an "are you fucking serious?" conversation after the fact (for me). Like, was that your high-on-sex-hormones brain just vomiting out some nonsense in the moment (the way someone would want to follow up if the first/only time a new partner said "I love you" is during sex)? Or are you serious about wanting children, starting a family, being together that way? I think these two escalated their relationship way too quickly (especially moving in after talk of wanting to "be the father of your babies" [whatever that may mean]), and the obvious incompatibilities have bubbled to the surface in a really ugly way, especially since FET seems to have been put in a more vulnerable position (she says she moved in with him, which I imagine makes it more difficult for her to extricate herself from the situation).

52

Scratch my last point @51 - I see Mr. FET moved in with FET and not the other way around. So he may be in the more vulnerable position housing-wise.

Continuing re: FET - anytime I see that a couple hasn't been together very long and they're already looking into couple's counseling, I can't help but think to just let the relationship die already. Relationships take work and aren't always sunshine and roses, but FFS it's not supposed to be that hard either. It's been a year and FET is at her "wit's end." End it, end it yesterday, find some awesome kinky people who won't yuck your yum and who will be down for your sexy self.

53

@41 fubar: I hate to respectfully disagree with you, but it really depends on the red wine. Blush, Rose, and White Zinfandel are loaded to the gills with sugar and I must avoid those dietarily. Yes--red wine does have some sugar, but Cabernet Sauvignon has the lowest level of sugar of all reds, and it's an excellent antioxidant and tension reliever. My naturopath has approved as long as I don't go overboard in my alcohol consumption. When Griz has a few, I pretty much stick to a couple glasses of Cab with dinner and have plenty of water with it to prevent dehydration. And I know to avoid taking anti-depressants (potentially lethal combo !!). But thank you, though, for your concern.

@45 BiDanFan (re EDGE): I guess I misread your comment--sorry. I actually share your curiosity about veganism in the 60s and 70s--especially with the explosive popularity of McDonald's way back when. The Big Mac was introduced in 1968 (when I was four), and it was the place to go for cheap hamburgers---when they actually had 100% USDA prime ground beef patties instead of toxic industrial waste. About the only theory I can add is that vegetarianism / veganism became popular among the hippy set, and EDGE refers to the late 60s when a lot of people were protesting the Vietnam War and pursing "alternate lifestyles". Tofu, bean sprouts, and quinoa come to mind. Definitely food for thought.

Who's salivating over landing on this week's Lucky @69 Award honors? Tick...tick...tick....

54

@53: To further clarify my comments re EDGE: I was initially surprised to learn that veganism started in the mid 1940s. I had forgotten that it had picked up in popularity by the 1960s and 1970s. Veganism seemed to fall by the wayside during the Reagan-Bush years of the 80s. Ol' cue card reading Ronny Raygun, in addition to cutting social programs for the poor stubbornly insisted that ketchup, many brands of which still contain high fructose corn syrup (!!!) qualified as a vegetable!
That's RepubliKKKans for ya regarding the health and well being of the average U.S. citizen--dumb 'em down and fatten 'em up.

55

fubar @47 thanks for clarifying your stance on "giving submissives what they want."

As to communication, yes, there are some people who have protocols that don't let them talk at events. Or, the Dominant screens all Fet mail from men (I think that's often more about discouraging the horny hordes than about protocol per se).

I know a few people who specifically have restrictions on talking with a family member or ex or friend who can be abusive at times, often at the submissive's request. I think that's a bit touchier.

I think "don't sext or text or have sex with men" sounds more like it's a restriction about reaching out sexually. The "men and women can't be platonic friends, but I am still friends with my exes" sounds a bit suspicious to me, as well as factually incorrect. Very 50 Shades of Pence.

Mrs. Fox @49 that's what I was trying to get at. Even if he'd never given you a single gift, his behaviour would make my skin crawl! He was completely disrespecting your boundaries.

BiDanFan @50 Mrs. Fox @51 Some people on Fet are into "breeding"/lactation fetishes, and don't mean it literally as wanting children. I agree that if he genuinely meant it, he'd be more likely to say something like "I want to build a family with you."

56

BiDanFan @45 Griz @53, 54
I knew some people in the 80's and 90's who avoided all animal products. I don't recall them using "vegan" as a label.

One of them said "I'm not a vegetarian because I like animals. I'm a vegetarian because I HATE PLANTS!!!" 🤣

57

Griz @53 et al, I agree it isn't impossible EDGE became a vegan in 1968, aged 13. Her parents, indeed, might have been hippies who put their entire family on a vegan diet. This seems a bit likelier than that EDGE was precocious enough to choose this for herself at such a young age, and stick to it for the rest of her life. If it was a parental decision, I'd expect most teens to rebel by sneaking off to McDonald's for two of those all-beef patties when they had the chance. Then again, I have a friend (age 40ish) who was raised vegetarian by vegetarian parents and never felt curious enough to try meat.

58

Opalescent @55: Re. "breeding" fetishes on fetlife. I recently saw a public post by a woman, with a screenshot of her ovulation app, asking "Who wants to come fuck a baby into me?" with affirmative responses from lots and lots of men.

I took a moment, hoped she was playing, and scrolled on by.

59

fubar@58
I think that Raindrop's friend "Dr." Laura Schlessinger would love to hear about that one. She could do a month of her radio show on it.

I would simply say to applicants that under the laws where I live as I understand them, nothing the mother could sign would insulate them from legal responsibilities like child support. Which might make the offer seem a bit less hot.

/Break/
I guess I'm about as old as anyone still here, so I will note WRT veganism that it had been almost popular in the leftist nirvana where I lived while in college for decades before I arrived there in 1977. According to the old-timers, during the sixties it had achieved new heights of popularity along with many other things. I did not realize until I asked Google that "The vegan diet became increasingly mainstream in the 2010s" per https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veganism
I hope that means it's become less difficult to practice. I've been vegetarian to various degrees, but never full vegan.

60

@Opal 43 -- I definitely stayed in my last two relationships way too long. I just feel like, how do you write the letter, proof read it, and then not realize that the only thing Dan is possibly going to say is DTMFA? I remember years ago, the girlfriend of my manipulative, womanizing friend telling me that she couldn't really go to her friends for relationship advice because the situation was "too complicated to explain," and that they wouldn't understand not knowing the people (she was from out of state.) Of course what she meant was that there was no way she could describe her relationship problems without getting the advice DTMFA, so she was choosing not to ask for advice. I would think the LWs would read over their letters and decide against sending them.

@Fan, Fox, and Opal 50, 51, and 55 -- My last boyfriend started talking about wanting to have children with me way too early, and while he did seem to find the idea erotic, he also definitely meant that he was serious about hoping we would have a life together, and he really, really wants to have a baby he can raise (he has some kids that he was not able to raise.) This freaked me out, both because it was way to soon and also because I don't want to have kids with anyone. It did seem somewhat cultural though -- a lot of his relatives as well as other people I know from his culture start having kids very early on in their relationships. I feel like LW said that Mr. Fet shared that he wanted to be the father of her children to show how serious they are about each other.

61

Snowflake@7
"It kind of amazes me"

Really? You said yourself that you

"haven't always been so good with the follow through and bringing myself to do it"

Then you admit @60 that you too "definitely stayed in my last two relationships way too long."

As I have stayed in relationships too long.

As Opal said she has @43. Actually I think Opal was optimistic with "Some people (at least occasionally) need an outside perspective in order to break free".
Because I don't see people listening to other people very often. I sure didn't in my bad relationships. As for

"how do you write the letter"

I knew everything in the letter I could have written, and it just didn't matter, because I wasn't ready to let go. This is what I meant @4 when I wrote about:

"people on the journey to letting go of their unhealthy partners"

People get attached. Then nothing might help. Until they're ready.

But I kinda get where you're coming from, in that before I was ready to let go I also wasn't ready to write the letter. When I was ready to write the letter I didn't need to write a damn letter, because I was also ready to let go.

Maybe when some people are ready to write a letter, it still helps them to send it. Maybe just to be 10000% sure they want to let go of a relationship they've been so attached to and addicted to that they found impossible to let go of so far.

62

@ 61 Curious -- Yeah, I guess part of the process for some people might be having Dan tell them DTMFA. For me, once I've been able to admit what's going on enough to write the letter, and then actually reading the letter back to myself, I at that point realize 'Ok, I need to DTMFA like last week, no need to hit up Dan.' But, whatever works -- I hope this week's LWs take the advice.

63

So wait, FET met the guy on fetlife, yet he disparages her kinks while refusing to tell her any of his own? Wtf was this guy doing on fetlife? Maybe she didn't mention the kinks/fetishes that they already engage in, but she still needs to get a guy that doesn't give her a hard time for her other kinks. It's not like anyone is going to have their kinks/sexual interests match up 100% in a relationship, so he needs to not be a fucking dick about the kinks that don't match up.

And as a gay guy, I'd be remiss to not comment on JOKES. The bf doesn't have to be out to show you respect. And you don't have to out him to demand it, either. That said, even if he starts treating you with proper respect, he's not going to be able to treat your relationship with proper respect until he's out about it. And it sounds like you can't live with that, so stop trying to.

64

Fet- "It makes me feel small because of the nagging feeling I may not be his cup of tea"
But y'all had such great sex that you left your last partner and moved him in. Doubting that someone is attracted to you while you're also having lots of great sex together sounds weird. If he doesn't treat you with respect, I'd doubt his love, not his lust.

Does it matter that he thinks cuckholding is gross, do you need to practice that with your partners or can it be a private fantasy? Lots of men are into MFF threesomes but don't bring it up to monogamous partners, because it's hard to find a woman who will sleep with other women and even share and not expect to sleep with other men. Cuckholding is generally a big ask too, especially since you dumped your last open partner for him. I don't understand the advice to dump people until you meet a perfect sexual match, that is as common as finding a true psychic.

The other issues sound important too, to be able to discuss them calmly and respectfully, expect fair treatment, eg. tell him that you will text men so long as he's texting women, and leave him if he doesn't want to be respectful or consistent too.

JOKES- Tell him that is not a joke since you're not laughing anymore, his fag joking days are over. If he argues that he shouldn't have to respect you, then leave him. From your sign off it sounds like you need him to come out now too. I'd give him a reasonably long time frame, maybe months, since you've had a closeted relationship for years and it might take months to arrange a move anyway.

EDGE - I don't think that hiring a PI or doing a background check is awful, just pretty insecure. Hacking your computer crosses into awful. He is reminding you that he violated your privacy and didn't learn better. And that if you marry him, it will continue and probably get worse. Maybe it might be safe if he can learn to regret his mistake and respect your privacy and never violate it again before marriage? Start by reminding him that is wrong to violate privacy every time he brings up the fact he snooped your email. He'll start to get the idea or you'll get so annoyed at his blatant repetitive disrespect that you'll dump him.

65

"He even accused me of getting paid for sex and said he had proof! Totally false!"
Shoot I missed this. Lying not even to deceive you, but lying about you in order to hurt you! Was this some temporary insanity that he apologized for later? I doubt it. Run like the wind, he's into hurting you when he feels hurt. Or I guess you could resign yourself to years of counseling instead of marriage, try to convince him to give up revenge and tit for tat perspective towards you while your counselor tells you he isn't into marriage enough to change, if you really like the sex and don't mind unreciprocated love.

66

Snow@62
Good for you not just for being open to advice and writing a letter, but for being objective enough to read and see that the letter gave you the answer. Bravo!

My history has been too pigheaded to even write the letter. Good for the LW's for writing the letter.

It seems everyone has their own unique-like-a-snowflake way of 'waking up and smelling the coffee'.

Except the ones who never smell it. After I awoke from my worst mistake ever, I was disappointed in myself for taking ten long years to wake up. I'll never forget forget the words a friend used to totally brighten my mood: "Coulda been 20"!

67

I'm confused as to why being a vegan or looking so young has any bearing on LW1's situation.

68

BiDanFan @45: "Perhaps my experience with vegans is different from yours because you take such delight in describing your love of meat to them -- the same behaviour, it would seem, you find so abhorrent when they do it? Whereas I give their choices the respect they deserve."

Putting words in my mouth and then scolding me for them. A pinch of Harriet and a squeeze LavaGirl. Very creative.

69

George @67: In an attempt to mend my ways and be kind to a vegan, I invented a reason @32.

70

Whoops, my mistake, I meant LW3, not LW1.
Anywho, thanks fubar for responding, so I gather it's a form of bragging, adding in extra unrelated details to bolster her case?
Still seems unrelated, but after reading the letter again, she appears to highlight several unnecessary (to her problem) positives in her favor.

71

Thunder@70
On the plus side, her odd bragging was the most substantive thing we all talked about upthread.
(The oddest angle of all I think, the one I mocked @4, was that she implied that she's immune to all infectious diseases. Shake in your boots, Covid-19!)

At least one person (Margarita@33) had compassion rather than the jokes most of us engaged in. Including me, and half my long life I've been a vegetarian of some variety (though never full vegan, only because I wasn't up to the challenge). Still would be if I still could.

72

@69 fubar: WA-HOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Congratulations on scoring this week's delectably wicked enviable Lucky @69 Award honors! Savor your newfound riches and bask in the glory.:)

73

curious2,
Thank you for the reminder to read all the comments before offering my own opinion, which apparently aligns with the majority.
Thank you again.

74

Curious @61 Snowflake @62
I haven't written in to a columnist. I did write about it and ask for advice from other ordinary people.

I personally found it extremely helpful for getting perspective, especially when they were guilt tripping or gaslighting.

Having it in writing, so I could re-read it when I got tempted to give them another chance, or when I was feeling miserable, made a huge difference.

I just came across an excellent essay that I highly recommend to anyone who is having frequent problems with a partner or friend:
http://libidablog.com/how-to-avoid-problem-people/2011/

75

My go Finland @ 10 was a football joke, they're rated as a weak team and I didn’t even know they qualified until I checked the schedule few minutes prior to posting. On Saturday they beat Denmark against all odds. (A Danish player collapsed just before half time and almost died. His teammates surrounded him and provided privacy while the medics were at it. Some players and many spectators had tears in their eyes. Front page of next day Sunday edition of the best-selling Danish daily read: “We lost the game, but life won.”
If it wasn’t so cold and English was the main language I would have seriously considered moving there.)

Finland is playing Russia on Wednesday morning Savageville time. The Russians don’t look good now that they can’t do drugs anymore. Advancing to the next round will make Finland the new Iceland, which is another football reference.
Stay tuned.

76

@Opal 74 -- Your link just brought me to an empty page with some foreign writing on the top, but I'm not computer savvy so maybe I some how messed things up? Having everything in writing really helps, I think, to be able to tell yourself, 'I'm not crazy, I am not totally at fault here, etc.' because yeah, sometimes you need to remind yourself of the facts. I can be guilt-tripped like no other, and need that sometimes.

77

Snowflake @76: The text on that page is Chinese. Better get used to it! (It says 404 - File not found.)

78

@77 P.S. https://web.archive.org/web/20200810085535/http://libidablog.com/how-to-avoid-problem-people/2011/

79

Snowflake @76 I found it especially helpful to have several people saying the same thing, in different ways. Repetition can be boring or annoying at times, but my brain needed that consensus. A lot of people were very kind and supportive!

Sorry, apparently the public link is no longer active. How to avoid problem people part 1: https://fetlife.com/users/110410/posts/478824 and part 2: https://fetlife.com/users/110410/posts/789424
Excerpted with permission

"You can learn to detect and screen out most emotional leeches BEFORE they disrupt your life or damage you.

And you can do this based on their behaviors, without needing to label or judge them.

I find it most useful to think in terms of "How much trouble is this person likely to cause me and others, how much of the time, for how long?"
. Focus on behavior, not labels.
. Find the patterns in people's behaviors and attitudes.
. Most leeches aren't problems all the time. That's why they're so hard to detect. Most can seem like good people, and many actually are good people… some of the time, with certain people, or in certain environments.
. If your people filters don't work correctly, or you have trouble reading social cues, get someone who is "people savvy" to help you vet potential partners.

Notice how many problem behaviors they do, to whom, how often and for how long, in how many contexts, and how problematically.

The ideal is to filter out all the "spammy" people while letting all the good people through.

Categories:
. Destructive
. Irresponsible
. Inconsistent
. Entitled
. Incompetent

A leech wants to make you feel inadequate so you'll allow them to manipulate you. Invalidation helps them do this. A healthy partner who really thinks you are a bad person will leave.

Many leeches say insulting and/or hurtful things. If you object, they attack you for being "too sensitive" or for "taking jokes too seriously."

Avoid people who attack you for having reasonable responses to their unreasonable behavior.

Strongly distrustful people usually lack the filters to detect and reject other untrustworthy people, so they keep having bad experiences. These provide more evidence that "people are untrustworthy."

"What were the earliest warning signs which, if I had KNOWN they were warning signs, would have let me know this person would be a problem for me?" These are often fairly subtle

"What did I do that contributed to the problem?" Sometimes all you did was not recognize a problem right away.

80

Fubar @78 thanks for finding it!

81

A new column is up.

82

@41 fubar: YEEEE-ikes! Did I really post that (@53)? I apologize fervently for some of the content after a careful re-read. I didn't mean to come off as rude and condescending. I have tot watch my carbs, too, and certainly can't afford toe consume red wine every day.

83

@82: Aaaauuuuuggghh! Look at the typos--and Griz once again hasn't touched a single drop of Cabernet Sauvignon. Though the day isn't over yet....
Correction: "I have to watch my carbs, too, and certainly can't afford to consume red wine every day."

As curious2 @81 says-- a new SL column is indeed up.

84

All good advice. My question was about the cuckolding thing being so “popular’ thing. I did not know it was that big a deal.

85

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