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I'm sitting in my lover's San Francisco apartment wondering what I'm doing. I flew out here to spend five glorious days with her. We connect sexually, we connect intellectually, and we make each other laugh. 

But she's literally twice my age. In no way does this bother me, but she frets that she's too old for me and will die before me and it isn't fair to have the feelings we do.

I can hang on to this ledge, and not let myself utterly fall for this woman so she doesn't break my heart when she says we must part as friends. I think that is what is coming. But I can't see anything wrong with enjoying what time we have together. The future is unfixed for everyone; you never know what will happen tomorrow. 

If I have to walk away from this with a slew of great memories of the greatest city on earth, there are certainly worse things. But I wish I could convince her to at least let us have a chance. How can I do that?

Lost In Fog Everyday

 

Start with the clichés -- "Age is just a number," "I could get hit by a bus tomorrow," "Someone's gotta change your diapers" -- and finish with a grace note: You love her and you hope you'll always be close, whatever she ultimately decides.

That said -- and forgive me for this, LIFE -- it's possible that although this woman is what you want, you're not what she wants, for reasons that have nothing to do with age. She may be pointing to the age discrepancy because it's a convenient, face-saving out.

If she wants out and cites age, you may be tempted to press your case -- and you should, up to a point. But press your case too far, and she may wind up telling you the inconvenient truth.

 

I'm a bi male in a long-distance, long-term, poly relationship, and I'm going to a speed-dating event soon.

I've never been to a speed-dating event before, though, so I'm not sure about protocol. I think that bringing up bi/poly would make the whole five minutes (or whatever) about that, and I'd really rather talk about mutual interests etc. Sexual orientation is a rather overdone topic to me, and talking about only that wouldn't let me figure out if I'm even interested in the other person. I'm not embarrassed by it at all; I'd just rather talk about more interesting things.

So should I disclose during a speed date that I am (1) poly and/or (2) bisexual?

Speed Disclosure

 

I tried to contact a few speed-dating businesses but couldn't find one with a contact phone number on its website. That fact kind of makes commercial speed-dating services look a little tawdry.

Anyway, disclosure is called for when a routine, obvious and logical assumption is incorrect. Since most people are straight, the onus is on the gay person to come out. Since most gay people aren't morons, the onus is on members of GOProud to identify themselves before getting disrobed.

Other speed daters are going to make the reasonable assumption that you are (1) single and (2) gay or straight, depending on whether we're talking about a gay or straight speed-dating event.

That said, due to prejudices beyond your control -- biphobia, polyphobia -- you may omit the bi/poly info about yourself on that first five-minute date. But you're obligated to disclose before a second date is arranged. Not to spare the women and/or men you might wind up dating from the unspeakable horrors of going out with a bi/poly dude, but to avoid wasting time on those who can't handle it.

 

I am a 19-year-old straight male who is only attracted to chubby girls, though I am rather skinny. I've learned to embrace this (though at first it seemed almost as scary as if I were to come out as gay). However, the problem I seem to have now is that the girls whom I find attractive don't think of themselves as attractive, and that is a turnoff for me. Despite what seems like constant effort on my part to raise my exes' confidence in themselves, they never got any better and the relationships always ended. I'm not exactly bursting with confidence myself, but I tried my best to be loving and supportive. I attribute a lot of their initial insecurity to the media, but I can't help but believe I somehow screw up and exacerbate it.

Troubled Horndog In Need

 

You're young and you've accepted your attraction to bigger girls, THIN, and that's great. But the girls you've dated are doubtless still struggling with all the shit that's been thrown at them about their bodies. To grow confident about something that caused you a lot of pain -- and to be with someone who's attracted to you in large part because of that something-that-caused-you-pain -- can take time.

That said, if all the bigger girls you've dated emerged from your relationship feeling worse about themselves and their bodies ... you might be doing something wrong. Were you treating your girlfriends like human beings, and talking about their bodies in a way that made them feel attractive? Or did you treat them like fetish objects in a way that made them feel disgusted with themselves -- and with you?

 

I'm a gay college student who's into bondage and kink. I'm also very involved with the Episcopal Church and want to become a leader in my church. I don't think that my predilection for bondage and my desire to pursue ordained ministry conflict, especially because I am fairly monogamous. Is there a conflict?

Wannabe Ordained Kinkster

 

I don't see a conflict, but I am not now, nor have I ever been, the Archbishop of Canterbury. If you can meet and marry a nice boy who shares your kinks, and you remain successfully monogamous, and you have no desire to go to the Folsom Street Fair or post play pictures of yourself on kinky personal sites, I don't see how your coreligionists will learn about your sexual interests, much less be scandalized by 'em.

 

Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage.

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