A Casual Love Letter to My Casual Lovers

I don’t love you, I’m certainly not in love with you, but we approach our time together with fondness, care, and – yes – love.

When I ask you to touch me a certain way, you do it – which is no small thing. When I want you to touch me a certain way, I feel comfortable asking for it – which is no small thing.

When someone else breaks my heart, it isn’t your responsibility to put it back together. But sometimes you do, a little bit. Maybe without even knowing that’s what you’re doing. Sometimes your touch heals me and it’s always a surprise, because it’s never something I expect to want or expect to get.

When my body feels broken and ugly and wrong, you remind me that it isn’t. You play me like a xylophone until we both can hear my nerve endings sing. I feel whole and gorgeous under your hands.

Beaten down by love’s little twists, I sink into the fiction that maybe no one will ever want me again and maybe I’ll deserve that. You break the spell and show me what I always know is the real truth: that I am wanted and wantable, loved and loveable.

You are both training ground and sacred soil. I try out new tricks without shame because the stakes are low and the payoff is high. I find my footing in your company. When I fuck up, you laugh, but with mirth and not malice.

Without the tangles of dashed hopes and unmet expectations hanging like cobwebs, I’m free to enjoy pleasure without heartache. I pull you closer without fearing I’ll scare you away. I hold on tight while we’re together, softening my heart and soaking you up, and when we’re apart I let you go. No effort, no struggle. It’s practically Zen.

For days or weeks, we forget each other, wrapped up in our respective adventures. And then a text or two. “I saw something that reminded me of you…” “Remember that time when we…” “I hope to see you again soon.”

You’re like a lucid dream within my waking world. A quiet burst of glee untethered to anything else I know. We show up, make each other laugh, make each other come, and part ways. An equable bargain, a cloudless reverie.

On the streetcar ride home from the sex club, I sit all chlorine-damp and fuck-drunk, smiling like the luckiest girl in the world. Because every time I see you, I am.

The 10 Commandments of Successful Friendships-with-Benefits

My first-ever sexual relationship was a friendship-with-benefits. So you would think I’d be better at that type of arrangement than the average person, since FWBs have been part of my sexual menu for literally my entire sexual career.

Nah, man. I wish. I have fucked up FWB situations in all manner of ways: I’ve fallen in love with fuckpals or turned the other cheek when they fell for me; I’ve undervalued them, or else heaped all my sexpectations onto them; I’ve ended things unceremoniously or not at all.

These are easy mistakes to make, because we don’t have clear social scripts for how FWB relationships (or, as I sometimes like to call them, “copulationships”) are supposed to go. However, these days, I have a rotating roster of occasional fuckbuddies, all of whom I adore – so I’m feeling much more motivated to do things right. Here are ten guidelines I think will serve you very well in copulationships of your own…

Only do it if you both want to. You’d think this would be obvious, but it isn’t always! Sometimes, people agree to a friendship-with-benefits because they think they have to. Maybe they want a romantic relationship with the other person, and think being their FWB is the closest thing they can get. Maybe they like their friend as a friend, and don’t quite know how to turn down the offer of sex without also severing the friendship. Maybe they’re just not a casual-sex type of person, but feel a social or societal obligation to pursue it anyway.

Before entering a FWB situation – or while the formation of a new one is still recent – give some thought to your reasons for wanting it, or not wanting it. Ask your pal how they feel about the situation as well. As in all things sexual, you cannot overprioritize clear, ongoing, informed, enthusiastic consent!

Set clear boundaries and expectations. You might think everyone shares your exact definition of “friend with benefits,” but they don’t! It’s important to hammer out what each of you expects from the other, and from the friendship in general. Emotional support? Seeing each other weekly or monthly? Are you seeing other people, and if so, are you going to tell each other when you do? Are certain sexual acts off the table, because they feel too intimate for a casual relationship, or for some other reason? If you run in the same social groups, are you okay with people knowing the two of you are sleeping together, or would you rather keep it on the down-low?

All of these factors can complicate a FWB sitch, so it’s best to figure them out before they become a problem. If there’s anything you’re not sure about, ask. Better to risk seeming a little uncool and find out what’s up, I say.

Ask for what you want – and encourage them to do the same. One of the best things about casual sexual relationships is that the stakes are lower, so you might find it easier to be frank about your desires. If they’re fucking you, presumably they want you to have fun and feel good – so ask for the specific things that would accomplish that! This could be anything from a small adjustment in technique to “Wanna put this huge dildo in my ass?”

As always, be prepared to accept a “No” if that’s their answer, and try not to take it personally. Likewise, you should encourage them to open up about what they’d like you to do – it’s important to be a good sexual partner, even if the situation is casual!

Talk about any feelings that come up. Learn from my mistakes: if you develop romantic feelings for your FWB, it feels like the best thing to do is hide that fact from them. But everything will just get worse over time, and then you’ll have massive emotional chaos on your hands instead of a small blip of a crush that could’ve been nipped in the bud.

Personally, I think that if either party begins to have romantic feelings for the other, it’s best to take a break from sex – and maybe even from seeing each other – until that situation is handled. That can feel difficult bordering on impossible, but trust me: it’s better than full-on falling for your fuckbuddy. You do not want that. It is a mess. Communicate and come up with a solution before you get to that stage, if at all possible.

(Pro tip: this was a chronic problem for me until I met my current main FWB, who is emotionally monogamous to his primary partner and who is also just not the type of person I’d want to date, personality-wise. It can be difficult to find someone who you find sexually attractive, enjoy spending time around, and have no romantic desire for whatsoever, but trust me, it is possible. If I, a severely crush-prone sap, could do it, I believe almost anyone can.)

Keep putting in the effort. It’s easy to feel like you don’t have to try to “impress” your FWB, because they’re not a romantic partner. But that’s a bullshit attitude. They’re your friend, and they’re sharing a sexual experience with you. They’re worthy of your respect and good treatment. If you don’t think so, why are you sleeping with them?

Make sure your sheets are clean when they come over. Shower and groom yourself appropriately. Don’t rush them out the door when you’re done. Treat them like a hot date you’re trying to impress, even if they’re the goofy pal you’ve seen laugh beer out their nose a dozen times. Be worthy of the experiences you’re sharing; they may be casual, but they’re not worthless.

Value their mind, not just their body. If you’re both cool with an “wham-bam-thank-you-fam” arrangement, that’s a different matter. But at that point, they become less a friend-with-benefits and more just a booty call. Keep up with their life, their hopes and dreams, their ups and downs, if they seem to want to share that stuff with you. A solid friendship will make the sex better, too!

Be respectful and polite. Don’t be late to your meetups if you can avoid it. Don’t cancel plans at the last minute unless you absolutely have to. Answer their texts in a timely manner when you can. You know, like… a good friend?

Be a friend, even when times are tough. I’ll never forget the time my FWB came over a week after I’d gotten dumped, and told me, “I’m sorry you’ve had such a rough week. You don’t deserve that. If you just wanna cuddle and talk tonight, I’d be totally fine with that. I don’t want to rush you or pressure you into anything you don’t feel like doing.” Admittedly, I wanted him to fuck me, too – but that was partly because he’d shown his true colors as a genuinely good guy! With this simple speech, he proved he viewed me as a person, not just a series of holes to fuck.

It can be awkward to try to emotionally support someone who you usually only see naked, sweaty, and grunting – but it’s nice to offer. They might not take you up on it, but they’ll probably feel better about the copulationship knowing it’s with someone who has their back.

Cultivate compersion. Incase you haven’t heard, compersion is the term the polyamorous community uses to describe the opposite of jealousy: it’s the feeling of being happy for a partner’s romantic and/or sexual happiness with other people.

Assuming your friendship-with-benefits isn’t monogamous (and most aren’t!), your fuckpal will probably date and/or bang other people while seeing you. They may even end things with you to pursue something with someone else. While this can be painful, it’s also an opportunity for you to hone your compersion skills. I have even found FWB situations to be excellent practice for navigating jealousy in my serious romantic relationships. It’s a win-win!

If it’s over, say so. Don’t ghost or fade away; it’s weak and rude. If you’ve been fucking someone consistently for a while, you owe them an explanation if that has to stop. End it like you’d endeavor to end a romantic relationship: politely, compassionately, and definitively. Don’t leave them wondering why you keep canceling plans or won’t answer their texts; you’re better than that.

Have you had successful friendships-with-benefits? To what did you owe their success?

The Best One-Night Stands I’ve Ever Had

My Best One-Night Stand (Emotionally)

He approached me and a friend late at night in the dungeon of my local sex club – but unlike almost all men who do this, he was respectful, casual, and cute.

He was a comedian, so I shouldn’t have been surprised that he made me laugh, a lot – but I was. It’s so rare that I meet someone in a skeezy environment like a sex club who I actually connect with. “I think we matched on Tinder at one point,” he said, conversationally, between goofy jokes and silly impressions. “I noticed you in the crowd and thought, ‘Who is that? I recognize her!’” I was charmed.

We stepped out onto the balcony to smoke some weed, plush white towels hiding our nudity from the August air. “Do you ladies want to come back to mine and do some coke?” he asked us. (I am sure he put it in cooler terms than that, but not being a “coke person,” myself, I can’t remember what those terms were.)

I waffled, unsure how to say what I needed to say, and eventually decided just to say it. “I don’t want to do cocaine, but I do want to go to your place and make out with you a bunch,” I told him.

“Oh, good,” he said. “I was actually just offering you coke because I wanted you to come to my place and make out with me a bunch.” It should have been an off-putting line, but I was not put off.

He’d been flirting with both my friend and I in equal measure all night, and I was convinced he wanted a threesome. After all, this friend of mine was gorgeous – much moreso than me, I thought – so who could blame him? But she was in a monogamous relationship, so after an appropriate amount of flirting, she had to bow out. “I totally understand if that means you just want to call it a night,” I blurted apologetically as I broke this news to him, utterly certain he wouldn’t want me if my gorgeous pal wasn’t there to sweeten the deal.

His brow furrowed in confusion. “What? No, I totally still want you to come over, if you’re down!” Oh. I realized then that maybe I am actually attractive. Maybe this myth I tell myself about being second-best, an unconventional delicacy, a consolation prize, is indeed a myth. Maybe a charming, hilarious, handsome comedian can hit on me at a sex club and mean it. Maybe I have nothing to worry about. Oh. 

We took an Uber to his house and had a passable hookup. I don’t remember the details; I was drunk and giggly and elated to be wanted. I pulled his floppy hair and laughed at his jokes and basked in desiredness. I didn’t come and I didn’t care; a different type of pleasure was exchanged.

In the morning we went for coffee and he bid me adieu at the subway station. I never saw him again but he had healed something old and gnarled within me. He had made me new and happy. He had shown me I deserve to be happy.

My Best One-Night Stand (Sexually)

“I just realized where I recognize you from,” an OkCupid stranger told me. “I was your server at [restaurant name redacted]. I remember thinking you had an interesting energy.”

I glanced at his photo and recognized him immediately. My friend and I had giggled over half-price martinis about our hot waiter, daring each other to ask him out but never actually doing it. And here was Hot Waiter, in my OkCupid inbox, asking me out. Neat.

We went for drinks the following week. We chatted about our kinks, matter-of-factly, in that way people do when they’re not terribly invested in impressing each other but are still probably gonna bang.

“I can’t wait to take you home and fuck your brains out,” he growled in my ear later when he had me pushed up against a fence in an alley, one thigh shoved between mine. He kissed me so hard our teeth collided, nibbled at my earlobes so insistently I lost an earring.

“I dunno, I don’t usually like to have sex on first dates,” I told him, my indecision clear in the way my words wavered.

“Okay, that’s fine,” he replied, but it was only a few minutes until I decided that yes, actually, we should fuck. Like, ASAP.

A short cab ride later, he tossed me onto his bed like a ragdoll. “What’s your safeword?” he asked as he grabbed his under-the-bed restraints and strapped me into them.

“Red and yellow are fine,” I murmured through breathless giggles. He nodded. And then he fucked me so good and for so long that I felt blessed to have a vagina, blessed to have nerve endings, blessed to have been born.

“I… can’t even form sentences right now,” I slurred slowly in the afterglow. “I think you fucked my brain right out of my head.”

“I told you I was gonna,” he said. Cocky fucker. I grinned at him and he looked like Jesus: the lord and savior of my faith in one-night stands. 

My Best One-Night Stand (Hypothetically)

I never met him. I never got to kiss him or taste his skin. I never felt his hands on me, his mouth, his gaze. But I dreamed about it for weeks and sometimes I still do.

“Tell me five things about you that you think I should know,” he said in our initial lightning-fast exchange on OkCupid. “One of them has to be a pivotal sexual interest or kink of yours.”

I don’t remember what I said. It doesn’t matter. I don’t want to go back and look at our messages to check. It would remind me too much of what I missed out on.

I remember what he said when I asked him the same question, though.

“I am absolutely addicted to giving oral and making people cum. I am pretty handy with a dick but my true addiction lies in eating people out,” he confessed/bragged. “I am beyond into it and have made a point to be Olympian-level good at it. My favorite thing in the world is learning someone’s body to the point where I can make them cum uncontrollably and they physically have to stop me.”

Normally I do not sext with strangers; it makes me uncomfortable and it does not turn me on. But we had been talking openly enough and for long enough that I felt we were not strangers, at least not entirely. They say erotic stories can help relationships thrive, and in this case, the story appealing to me was the one he was weaving. His profile pictures and clever repartee had woven an image of a man I wanted to get to know – and, now, a man I wanted to go down on me.

“A thing about me is that I’m normally not that into people going down on me – but people aren’t normally very good at it,” I informed him. “So. We shall see.”

“Oh, a challenge,” he wrote back. “I have NEVER FAILED when presented with this. I am batting 1.000 with pussy-eating success.”

As I get older, I become increasingly aware that while sex-in-theory is a wonderful thing that excites me greatly, sex-in-practice is often a clunky disappointment. Transcendently good sex still exists, of course, but for me it is often the domain of long-term relationships: a partner has to know my body, my tastes, and my kinks before they can really do me right. This is why one-night stands have never appealed to me much. You can’t build the house without the blueprints, naw’m sayin’?

But this boy’s approach got me so curious. He didn’t just brag about being a good cunnilinguist, like many men do; he talked about enthusiasm for the act, curiosity about partners’ preferences, passion for learning what works for each individual. He wasn’t just sexting my body; he was sexting my brain.

He ghosted me before we actually went out, for reasons that are still unclear. And while ultimately I wouldn’t want to date or go out with someone who would do that to me, I’m still curious about that tongue, those lips, that brain. I wonder if the antidote to bad one-night stands is simply to have them with people who give a shit. People who want to learn your body like a puzzle. People for whom your pleasure isn’t a token bone they’re throwing you, but instead, the entire fucking point.

 

This post was produced in collaboration with Badults, and as always, all writing and opinions are my own.

The Unbearable Bliss of the Trifuckta

Author’s note: I wrote this a while ago, so the relationships here described are no longer current – but I still love this piece and wanted you to read it!

 

The word first popped into my head two summers ago. Trifuckta. A trio of people you are banging on the regular. Of course.

It was a goofy portmanteau, sure. But it was also something I desperately wanted. At the time, I didn’t even have one steady partner, let alone three – but I felt the deep desire buzzing in my bones. Yes. That.

It would be another year before I materialized a trifuckta of my very own. It fell together quickly, almost magically: a first few dates with a handsome nerd from Twitter, a tentative flirtation with a lawyer I’d met at a party, and a reunion with my on-and-off fuckbuddy – and suddenly, I found myself seeing three men in regular rotation, all of them aware of each other and A-OK with their role in my life. Every day was blissful. My heart felt full.

What I loved most about this arrangement was that each partner brought out different sides of me. This had long been a perceived benefit of #PolyLyfe for me, and I was elated to discover it was as lovely as I’d anticipated. I gave them code names – “Almost-Boyfriend,” “Lawyer Beau,” and simply “FWB” – and talked about them gleefully on Twitter (with their consent). Almost-Boyfriend treated me with tender revere, got me high in his roomy apartment, let me cuddle his cat while we talked about sci-fi and politics, and fucked me languidly in his cozy bed. Lawyer Beau took me out on drinks-dates and peered seriously at me from across the table while we discussed feminism and morality. And FWB, as always, regularly made me laugh so hard I cried and made me come so hard I entered the astral plane. It was a beautiful few weeks.

Unfortunately, it all dissolved as quickly as it had begun. In the course of one week, my entire trifuckta imploded. First, there was the bitter break-up with Almost-Boyfriend, both of us crying numbly over the phone. Then there was the revelation that Lawyer Beau had been lying to me about his poly status and was actually committed monogamously to someone else. And then – the kicker – there was the tearful conversation with my FWB after a party, where I admitted I was in love with him, he admitted he knew, and we decided to take some time off bangin’ each other. To say the least, I was crushed.

The way I remember it, I barely got out of bed for days. Hygiene and nutrition fell by the wayside. Nothing seemed worth doing anymore. Because I had lost these three men who had been so important to me, and I had also lost the parts of myself they each brought to the surface.

Now it’s many months later, and I’m thinking about this episode again, because another trifuckta is materializing in my life. It is rising from the ashes of my old trio, tentative and slow. There’s the salt-and-pepper good-natured dork I sometimes bang at a sex club and make out with in a swimming pool, the buff perv who fucks the coherence out of me late at night, and the articulate cutie who kisses me with a thoughtful slowness and makes me laugh during post-coital cuddles.

Once again, I’m struck by how they each bring out different sides of my personality. A sardonic wit, a happy-go-lucky sass, an erudite poise. But I’m also struck by how these sides aren’t that different. I feel more unified with this particular trifuckta than I did with my last one. Maybe that means I’m growing up, consolidating, gaining confidence in my whole self. That’s an important lesson too.

None of these people are romantically committed to me, nor would I necessarily want them to be. I declared on Twitter recently that I was having good compersion feelz about these relationships – enjoying the way these men congratulate me on my good dates with other dudes, or cheer me on when I get fucked well by someone else – but that this was a preview of the poly life I hope to lead someday, rather than a poly life in and of itself. “It sounds like you’re already poly,” some followers pointed out. But while it’s true that I’m non-monogamous, and that polyamory may be my romantic orientation rather than just my chosen relationship style, these connections are missing the “-amory” part of the equation. I’m fond of these men, but we’re just bangin’. I’m holding out hope for a future trifuckta that’s laced with romance, too – love, commitment, and intimacy that lasts beyond the bounds of our sexual encounters.

I’m even more aware than usual, lately, that what I’m looking for now is a romantic, primary-partnership type of thing. And there is a part of me that thinks the universe would deliver this to me more quickly if I cut off all my other sexual entanglements. “You must make room for what you want to attract before it can show up,” as some of my spiritual mentors have advised.

But another part of me believes I deserve good sex while I’m waiting for my Actual Goddamn Prince(s) Charming to drift on over. I deserve sweet slow kisses, late-night laughs, and some semblance of intimacy. I deserve a precious preview of the poly life I hope to cultivate. I deserve my trifuckta.

It may not be perfect, or exactly what I want, but few things in life ever are. So for now, I’m happy, and cozy, and nearly satisfied.

12 Days of Girly Juice 2016: 2 Fears Defeated

After I chickened out on going down on a girl during a threesome this year, my male fuckbuddy – the other participant in said threesome – commented, “I wish I could hack your brain and cut your anxiety out of it.”

I could’ve been offended. I could’ve interpreted this as him wanting to circumvent my resistance and artificially coerce me into doing something I didn’t want to do. But I know him well, so I knew what he meant. He wanted to rid me of my sexual anxieties, not only because it would be more fun for him, but because it would be more fun for me.

I can’t argue with that. There are, no doubt, a lot of fun activities I could enjoy if I didn’t psych myself out of doing them. But we can’t control the mental illnesses we’re saddled with, and we can only do what we can do. So I try not to beat myself up for the hurdles I’m not yet strong enough to jump – and I try, instead, to celebrate the hurdles I have leapt over with flying colors. Here are two such hurdles I cleared in 2016.

Doing porn. I don’t even like my partners to look at me during sex. I don’t know why I thought I could handle porn, where the eyes on me would total not only my partner’s but also the cameraperson’s, any other crew members’, and those of the eventual viewing audience. But it sounded fun, to some deeply buried and uncharacteristically brave part of me, so I gave it a shot. It helped that I have a lot of friends who are involved in porn – most notably Caitlin of Spit and Taylor of Feisty Fox Films – so I knew I’d be safe and supported.

I kicked off 2016 by shooting a scene for Spit with the devastatingly handsome Dane Joe, who bent me over a coffee table in Caitlin’s cozy downtown apartment and spanked an epic bruise onto me with a paddle while I stared at a bowl of oranges artistically placed in front of me. And then I got to eat a cupcake for having been such a good girl. (This scene was later screened at Smut in the 6ix in front of dozens of people, to my blushy glee.)

A few days later, I got naked in the Glad Day Bookshop for Taylor’s camera, posing with goofy props gathered from around the store. The manager pumped Justin Bieber tunes through the stereo at my request and I wore an unshakeable smile as I sidled around the shop in my skivvies, still bruised from my last shoot.

Photo via Spit.

In February I performed in one of Spit’s live porn shoots at Oasis Aqualounge: Dane Joe bossed me around and fucked me with various toys for the crowd’s amusement, until I had a surprise orgasm while she pounded me with my Eleven.

In May, I skipped over to Taylor’s house with a tote bag full of sex toys and masochistic implements. He and his photographer pal Caroline Fox trained their video cameras on me, and I didn’t feel nervous at all – instead, I came alive, perked up, put on a show. I smacked myself silly with my stone crop, then fucked myself with toys until my body burst into climax.

In June, I showed up at Riverdale Park in full rockabilly garb. Caroline, shooting for CherryStems this time, helped me sleuth out a relatively secluded area in the middle of the park, and I saucily stripped off my clothes while she snapped away. Then she handed me an ice cream cone and I fellated it with the juicy joy of someone who loves sugary treats as much as she loves blowjobs. (A lot.) Being photographed for CherryStems felt like the fulfilment of a very old wish: I’d longed to do pinup modeling since I was a wee lass poring over SuicideGirls.com before I was legally allowed to view such materials.

Mid-year, I complained on Twitter that I’d never shot blowjob porn and wanted to – and to my surprise, I got a DM from the owner of one of my favorite dicks, volunteering his gorgeous cock for me to suck on camera. I contacted my friends at Spit and managed to organize things so both Bex and I could shoot scenes for them while Bex was visiting Toronto that month. Bathed in soft light and the giggly glow of a happy little princess, I knelt on the floor between my fuckbuddy’s knees and Spit’s artistic director John Bee shot us in a stunning POV BJ scene. Weeks later, me and my co-star huddled together in my bedroom with boozy ciders and watched the scene on my little laptop. “Do I look pretty?” I asked him, and he replied, “You look very pretty. And sexy. And determined.”

Porn has never been a career ambition for me, never something I took very seriously – I’ve always done it for the fun and thrill of it, more than for money or glory (both of which there is little of, in Canada’s small porn scene). So I don’t know if I’ll do much more of it, now that I’ve basically achieved what I wanted to achieve by gettin’ sexy on camera. Maybe in 2017 I’ll shoot a solo scene for MakeLoveNotPorn.TV, or spank a pretty girl for Taylor’s camera, or co-blow a handsome person for Spit. Only time will tell…!

One-night stands. Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate fear from regular ol’ dislike. Prior to this year, I’d always theorized that one-night stands would not be my jam (peep this old post where I wrote, “I’m soooo not interested in sex where the partner and I know nothing about one another… Boring!”), but this year I finally delved into them a little bit. I had one in Minneapolis and a couple more back home in Toronto.

Those experiences were okay, but they also confirmed for me what I’d already suspected: that one-night stands are not my preferred type of sex, not at all. I didn’t have an orgasm during any of those three encounters, and it wasn’t a coincidence: sex with a brand-new partner who’s a near-stranger is rough on my anxiety, making it hard for me to relax into pleasure, plus my genitals’ preferences are so specific that someone really needs to bang me a few times before they’ll learn how to get me off. With one exception (a porn shoot at a sex club, using amazing toys), all the orgasms I had during partnered sex this year were with steady romantic partners or consistent fuckpals – people who knew my body, and who I felt comfortable bossing around til they learned what worked.

Another factor that makes one-night stands not-so-great for me: there’s often alcohol involved! It isn’t necessary for us to drink before boning, of course, but it just shook out that way a lot of the time: either we went on a Tinder-borne pre-bang drinks-date, or we met at a bar or party where there was some boozin’. Alcohol numbs sexual sensation, which – for me, during one-night stands – just compounded my already-extant orgasm troubles in those situations.

It’s interesting how sometimes conquering a fear introduces you to your new favorite thing (that’s what happened for me with improv!), but other times, it just shows you how much you dislike the thing you once feared. It’s still always better to know than to suspect, though, so I’m glad I did the legwork and learned one-night stands aren’t for me. Sexual empowerment is a process, and part of that process is learning what you like and what you dislike.

I think in 2017, I’ll avoid one-night stands. (To the best of my ability, anyway. Sometimes you can’t predict when a sexual encounter will be a one-off.) The only reasonable exception I can imagine is if I’m desperately craving a dick in my mouth – in which case, I won’t be especially concerned with getting off, so it won’t matter if the non-BJ parts of the experience are subpar. I’m hoping my sexual situation in 2017 will involve some more consistent, longer-term sexual partnerships – but if not, I think I’d rather just double down on masturbation than risk terrible sex with a stranger!

What fears did you conquer in 2016?