gender norms

I Added A Kinky Dating Application to My OkCupid Profile. Here’s What Happened.

In late July, a friend sent me a screenshot of a woman’s Tinder profile where she included a link to a survey and directed men interested in dating her to fill it out. Although the questions she asked struck me as more superficial and entertaining than for compatibility assessment, I thought her idea was brilliant and decided to do the same for my OkCupid profile. Heck yes for efficiency, especially for someone like me who is seeking a partner with highly specific, somewhat less common preferences. (more…)

An Open Letter to All the Ugly Men I’ve Slept With

Let me first give a heartfelt thank you to all of you men who have shared (or have offered to share) your bodies with me, in any capacity. That’s a gift that I do not take lightly. What puzzles me, though, is why you can’t recognize your own appeal. (more…)

Valentine’s Day: Yet Another Way for Men to Fail

Last Thursday morning, as I was surfing my usual radio station medleys on my drive to work, I stumbled across a humorous Valentine’s Day promotion. Hot 99.5 was offering men who had not yet made Valentine’s Day dinner reservations the chance to win pre-made reservations at popular local restaurants. In exchange for the gift, the men had to imitate how mad their female significant others would be if they found out that the men had nothing planned for the big day. While male impressions of female nagging can be hit or miss, two of the three I heard were hilarious. (more…)

Men vs. Women: What Your Lover is ACTUALLY Freaking Out About in Bed

During last weekend’s torrential snow dump, over a homemade orange Fanta snow slushie and after many hours of binge-watching Sex and the City, I started pondering the differences between men’s and women’s expectations and fears in bed. (more…)

Man Up, Guys.

One of the radio shows that keeps me company on the way to work in the morning has a segment where they set up hoaxes for listeners who are concerned about the faithfulness of their significant others. The hoaxes usually entail calling the person’s significant other on the phone and posing as someone who works in a flower shop, under the ruse that the shop buys magazine subscription lists and the significant other has won this month’s random draw for sending a bouquet of a dozen roses (and sometimes a romantic massage for two) to someone special. (more…)

Limp Dicks and Bare Faces: A Female Perspective on Impotence

There is an episode of Sex and the City where the protagonist is dating a short story writer who, ironically, prematurely ejaculates. When I watch that episode in the company of male friends, they burst out laughing during the scene where we first witness Mr. Man’s sexual difficulty. Immediately thereafter, that hearty laughter turns to thinly veiled nervous laughter. Female friends, however, have never laughed. In contrast, they have tended to sympathize with the protagonist’s frustration with her partner — not so much over his sexual difficulty, but over his disinterest in discussing it with her. (more…)

That Angry, Naked Guy is Art!

Since the last time I visited the Hirshhorn Museum in D.C. a few years ago, which was the first time I’d been since I was maybe seven years old, one work of art has remained fixated in my mind and left within me a lasting, emotional impression.

Big Man, by Ron Mueck, is a larger-than-life sculpture of a round, hunched, naked, scowling man. In person, I found him to be breathtaking. He bears a look of tired frustration across his brow and jaw, and fleshy curves across his abdomen. His skin is wrinkled, dimpled, and splotched.

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That Time I Had a Crush on a Girl

In college, I was once in a class of mostly women and found myself inexplicably drawn to one classmate. She had a feminine name by birth, but her friends called her by a masculine nickname, which I thought was awesomely badass. While I didn’t know enough about her to be attracted to her personality, she was visually captivating. Something about her harmonic voice, sweet smile, svelte figure, and soft, highlighted blonde curls regularly captured my attention. I used to feel myself blushing when we would occasionally make eye contact. (more…)

What Makes a Man Pathetic?

Recently, someone remarked that I date pathetic men. To my ex-partners who may be reading this, I certainly don’t think any of you are pathetic, and I apologize that this person has perceived you as such. While I bear a strong preference for sexually-inexperienced men who prefer to play an exclusively submissive role in intimate relationships and have ample emotional baggage, I would like to clarify to onlookers that fewer than half of the men I’ve dated meet these qualifiers.

My feelings aside, that comment got me thinking — what does it mean to be a pathetic man in our society? (more…)

Big Fucking Deal

To my dear boyfriend, please read with caution, though none of this will come as a surprise.

In follow up to this article I recently shared on here as well as on my personal Facebook page about vagina-bearers having unintentionally painful sex, I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately. I know the pain the author talks about all too personally. Although my boyfriend and I have attempted intercourse several times in the past few months, it has never been pleasurable because I’m in too much pain for us to actually do anything. At best, we try to insert him into me, then lay motionless until I’m sufficiently numb from the stinging to naively think I can tolerate more. Thrusting hasn’t even been a possibility yet, just (barely) insertion and the occasional wriggle forward and back a couple of times. Who’d have thought that something with such a soft, pliable tip could feel so sharp, like a dagger piercing through my flesh?
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