ADVICE: Too Late to Stop Having Sex?

I get email:

After 5 months of being with my boyfriend we finally decided to have sex. It was totally on a whim..I was planning on waiting a lot longer. At the time I figured, I love him and want to make this commitment…now, i’m not so sure I made the right choice. I guess my question is, since we have already had sex, could “waiting” still be an option or would it be a little far fetched? I am also worried on how or if I should even bring this up to him.

-AJ

Hey AJ!

Good news! Waiting is ALWAYS an option. In every encounter, you always have the right to say no–whether it’s before or even during sex. Having sex does not open any flood gate, so if you’re not ready and you’re questioning yourself, as it seems you are, then it’s perfectly OK to say no. It doesn’t make you a bad partner, and if your boyfriend loves and respects you, he will honor and respect your needs in the relationship.

You mentioned that you don’t know if you should bring it up to him. As a general rule of thumb, if you need something, it’s always good to bring it up with him. Now, as to how to do so: my recommendation is usually for people to bring up issues in bed *outside* of bed. So, next time you’re hanging out, maybe when you’re being a little affectionate with each other and you’re both in a good mood, tell him that there’s something you want to talk about. Here’s an example scenario:


You: Hey, do you mind if we talk about something for a sec that has been bothering me?
Him: Sure, what’s up?
You: You know how we had sex last week? I felt like I was ready to do it, but afterward I realized…maybe I’m not as ready as I thought.
Him: What do you mean?
You: I love you and I want to make this commitment to you, but I think maybe it’s too much for me at this point. The time might come, but I’m not quite there yet.
Him: Okay, I understand. How can I meet you where you’re at?
You: Well, do you think we could wait a little longer? I’d be much more comfortable with that.

Of course, this template isn’t exactly how it’s going to play out! This is just an example of how to get started and some directions you could go. Of the most importance is to be honest and gentle. Remember, you’re doing this to take care of yourself, and you have every right to do so. If he appears upset, remind him that you’re just trying to communicate your needs to make your relationship stronger. Make sure that he knows it’s about you and it’s not an attack on him, if necessary. Lastly, don’t let him (or anyone else for that matter!) make you feel bad about your choice or pressure you into having sex any way. It’s your body, use it however you want to.

Good luck. <3

Hey fattie, you eat too much!

There’s a channel on YouTube that I’ve been watching for some time now. His name is Steven Assanti, otherwise known as “FatBoyGetDown“. Steve weighs over 600 pounds and in his videos you can find him dancing to the latest beats, parodying other YouTubers, and….eating.

A short while ago, Steve applied to be on a weight loss show called “The Biggest Loser” pleading that he fears he will soon die if he doesn’t lose weight. When he wept on camera, his viewers were compassionate, empathetic, and wrote in to help him get on the show. Since then, there have been no updates on his attempts to get on the show. I suspect he may have been rejected because he has too many medical issues, but I don’t have much support for that claim. In the mean time, he has continued to post videos like his old ones. I find his comments…..interesting. On the message boards of his regular videos, people leave considerably rude comments:

My questions for you are: are these comments about Steve’s habits or body justified? Is Steve “asking for it” and does that matter? Would it make any difference if people were telling him how to live his life in a way that was less rude? Is it our place to regulate each other’s health…especially a total stranger? Obviously, the commenters on this video think that the answer is yes; they feel justified and entitled to telling Steve how to regulate his life and will likely continue to do so.

I’m not so sure I see it the same way. Being obese is not a crime, and even though his approach might be unhealthy, eating too much isn’t a crime either. In my opinion, it’s YOUR life, not mine. It’s not my place to degrade you and judge you because of a lifestyle and habits that are yours alone; I simply don’t see this as warranting verbal abuse. Humans can be so despicably cruel.

*UPDATE 3/08/11: Steven has posted a video announcing that he is leaving YouTube because of the verbal abuse. :’(

Excuse me for fucking eating a large pizza just because I’m morbidly obese. So what? Everybody has an addiction. There’s alcoholics, there’s drug addicts…and there’s food.”
Steven Assanti

What will you tell your son?

I suggest you watch this short clip before proceeding:

Amazing.

“She won’t be the only one,
she’s not asking
what you’re going to tell your daughter
she’s asking
what you’re going to teach your son.”

There’s no dispute that domestic violence has now reached epidemic proportions in the world. Here in the US of A, 1 in 4 women are abused by their partner in their lifetime. Our mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts, grandmothers, and friends; we all know a victim.

So when does the violence end?
The past year I’ve worked as a domestic abuse crisis counselor with heavy academic and activist involvement in the anti-violence movement here in San Francisco. I can tell you, from the inside, that the violence has become so massive, so monstrous, that all of the–albeit EXTREMELY limited–resources go toward helping the people who have already been abused. Survivor outreach is important and necessary in a society where “domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of 15 and 44, more common than automobile accidents, muggings, and cancer deaths combined” (Surgeon General’s Office). Obviously, we cannot cut off the help for victims.

But what are we doing to PREVENT it? Will this cyclic abuse continue forever? Reality is, the numbers are growing, not diminishing.

To prevent male on female abuse (by far the most common type of abuse, but definitely not the only type of abuse), we must begin combating against the idea that being masculine means being violent. Just as Gibson indicates, it is my belief that we must be talking to young people, especially young men, about healthy relationships, anger management, and nonviolent communication. I argue that we should start these discussions during childhood. We learn the most during our childhood, and the messages that we get are reflected in our behaviors for the rest of our lives. Personally, I have used schoolyard violence in my little brother’s life to talk to him about violence and the treatment of people–and more specifically, the treatment of women. I’ve found that having open, gentle lines of communication with each other as well as giving him specific things to say/do when he’s in difficult situations has helped tremendously to nurture his compassion and empathy.

If it were up to me, violence, just like sexuality, would be a talking point in every home and school across the nation starting around age 3 or 4, executed in a thoughtful and age appropriate fashion. The conversations would revolve around (1) acknowledging what’s going on around us, (2) how to deal with anger and stress, and (3) fostering excellent communication skills. We often start this conversation young (i.e. “No hitting, Tommy!”), but don’t continue it (i.e. “Let’s talk about other ways to deal with being angry, son.”)

I plan to delve into the execution of these 3 violence prevention objectives in the future. For now, the question remains: what will you tell your son?

For further information, see my video “When Love Gets Violent. You can also visit my “sex+ toolbox” where you will find 10 tips for men to prevent gender violence and a nonviolent communication guide among other (lesser related) tools.

*Wow. To all the men freaking out about male victims, this is an article about VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN as should be very clear from the beginning. Why can’t I just FOR ONCE talk about violence against women without every man freaking out and feeling personally victimized? Does it always have to be about you? Do you not see the irony in that? Like a caucus on racism and insisting on talking only about racism against white people. Yes, we know that it exists; yes, it should be dealt with–but HELLO? That doesn’t change the fact that racism is a systematic problem that affects mostly people of color. Despite however defensive talking about gender issues might make you feel, this isn’t an attack on men, and any rational human can see that. That’s right: NOT ALL MEN ARE VIOLATORS and NOT ALL WOMEN ARE INNOCENT and I NEVER said they were. I’m here to talk about a major problem that presently and historically has had a gargantuan impact on my world. If you have a problem with that, this isn’t the blog for you. THANKS.