I'm a 23-year-old homo. Life has done good and bad things to me. Good things include intelligence, a full ride to college and a job with a six-figure income. Sadly, my place in life is different from the place occupied by most other young gay men. When meeting someone, I am often bummed to discover that they are in a state of transience (between cities, between degrees), or I detect a difference in socioeconomic upbringing/status that will make it hard for us to relate, or they are not as smart as I am, or most often a combination of all these things. These thoughts sap my interest, telling me that "it just wouldn't work." Am I right to keep looking, or should I go on that second date, even though the odds of compatibility seem slim?
Lots Of First Dates
I'm tempted to tell you not to go on "that second date" with anyone you feel is beneath you — not to spare you his ghastly company, but to spare him the ghastliness of yours.
If dating gay men your own age means exposing yourself to guys who are in "states of transience" — completely normal states for dudes in their early 20s — then date guys in their 30s and 40s. Not that dating older guys is a surefire recipe: Your snobbery and elitism are so repulsive that most older guys will be blocking your number before you can call about a second date.
Andrew Sullivan wrote a beautiful post at The Dish about the egalitarianism of getting laid. He recalled dancing all night in a gay club full of African-American guys back when he was a "cute twinky English schoolboy":
"There's nothing like dating or fucking a person of another background, race or class to help you see the humanity in everyone," Andrew wrote. "How do you get scared of generic young black men when you've danced with them all night long? ... In that sense, I've always felt that being gay was a real moral blessing. I could have been so much worse a human being if I'd been straight."
You're young, and I'm being hard on you. But if you don't get a grip on your snobbery, you will become so much worse a human being than you need to be. And remember: We gay people are a tiny minority. If you reject as potential partners, friends and fuck buddies all gay men who aren't of your class, education level, social status (ugh) or salary level (barf), you won't be left with many guys.
Which is not to say you'll wind up alone. There are other gay snobs out there. You could find a boyfriend who's just like you. But I wouldn't wish that kind of guy on anyone.
Not even on you.
I recently started dating a 26-year-old female. I was surprised when she told me that she gets nothing out of oral sex: Eventually, I was to discover that this was because she has no external glans (clitoris hood/head). It's just smooth skin where a clit would be. She is probably the easiest person I've ever met to get to orgasm, so this isn't a problem, just a mystery. I know that the clitoris is much larger than the part you can see, and she gets off on the feeling of pressure on and around where the glans would normally be. So I'm sure she has developed nerves and, I guess, has a clit under the skin. Have you ever heard of this? Is it common?
Clitorless Lad In Torment
"It's pretty rare, but yes, it happens," said Debby Herbenick, a research scientist at Indiana University, a sexual-health educator at the Kinsey Institute, the author of Sex Made Easy (among other books), and the only woman who has ever chased me around a room with a vulva puppet.
When a woman doesn't have an exposed clitoral glans, "there's usually other genital parts that haven't developed or have developed in atypical ways," said Herbenick. "But there have been a few case reports in which the women had other typically developed genital parts — labia, etc. — while the clitoris alone is missing or very small. Some of these women report erotic sensation in the clitoral area."
Should your girlfriend talk to a doctor?
"I haven't seen this woman's genitals," said Herbenick, "but sometimes there is atrophy or even ‘coverage' of the clitoris (for example, the hood fuses over the glans partially or completely) due to vulvar skin disorders such as lichen sclerosus. Some children have LS, and often it goes undiagnosed for years and, without treatment, her clitoral hood could have fused over the glans. A dermatologist or gynecologist knowledgeable about vulvar dermatoses could look into this possibility via a very small biopsy. (Doctors with expertise in vulvar health can be found through issvd.org.)"
Follow Dr. Herbenick on Twitter @DebbyHerbenick.
My girlfriend and I have a vibrant relationship, but I have an issue that clouds up the sexual chemistry: Since childhood, I was told by my family that abortion was a horrible, horrible thing. And that thought has complicated my relationships. I simply don't know how to get past this thought and indulge my partner and myself sexually without feeling uncertain about the possible outcome of our getting funky. I feel awful that my girlfriend has to deal with this moral panic. Help!
Bummed About Bad Experiences
Some suggestions: Use a hormonal birth control method and a condom and pull out before you come. Stick to oral sex, mutual masturbation and doing her in the butt (if that's something your girlfriend enjoys). Deposit a few loads at a sperm bank, keep 'em on ice until you want kids, and get a vasectomy.
Or you could learn more about abortion while acting responsibly, i.e., using birth control and condoms. Abortion is not a horrible, horrible thing. It is a medical, medical thing.
This week on the Savage Lovecast, the appalling crisis of homeless LGBT youth, at savagelovecast.com