What's the etiquette for having sex when you're a guest in another person's house? Friends spent the night and shared some passion. I don't have a problem with this. However, this was period-sex, and I was left with bloody, sex-stained sheets. Am I wrong to be annoyed? Can I ask them to replace the sheets?

Hostess With The Menses

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Your guests had to know—if your sheets were a bloody mess, so were your guests—and they should have offered to replace your sheets. You're right to be annoyed. If you believe your friends are selfish and inconsiderate—if you think they didn't care about the mess they left for you—confront them, ask for replacements, and cultivate other friendships. But if you know your friends to be deeply sex-negative, HWTM, it's possible they were so mortified by the mess—evidence that they'd had sex!—and were paralyzed by shame. If that's the case, let it slide, buy your own replacements, and cultivate other friendships.

The etiquette for having sex when you're a guest in another person's house goes like this: Polite guests do not leave a bloody, spunky, or santorumy mess for their hosts to clean up. Staying in the guest room and desperately horny? Sounds like the perfect opportunity for an extended—and tidy—oral-sex session. Staying in the guest room and want to fuck? Fuck on the desk, fuck standing up, fuck in the shower. If your partner is one of those only-in-bed, only-on-my-back types, lay a towel down on your host's sheets—or, better yet, a couple of your own T-shirts—and fuck away.

Thoughtful hosts purchase dark sheets and towels for guest suites. And if guests leave a towel on the floor of the bathroom in a neat little ball, toss that towel in the wash—with extra bleach if the towels are white—without unfurling and inspecting. Be warned: An unwise host who unfurls a balled-up white towel may find herself staring at what looks like the flag of imperial Japan. And if your guests are courteous enough to strip the bed before they leave, those balled-up sheets go straight into the wash, too.

Originally published April 1, 2010.


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