Savage Love | Opinion | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Savage Love

I'm a 25-year-old straight female. I've been dating my boyfriend for only a few months, but we fell in love fast. He is a caring person, and I want to make this last. However, he doesn't turn me on. It has nothing to do with looks -- he's GORGEOUS -- but rather with the fact that I am submissive and like things rough (rape fantasies, being tied up, etc.). He tries, but he is just too timid. The last guy I dated used to toss me around like a rag doll, and I miss being dominated.

I talked to my wonderful GGG boyfriend, and he agreed right away to have a threesome with my previous guy. I haven't talked to the previous guy yet, but I'm sure he'd be into it. This threesome would allow my ex to do something really kinky, which I know he would love. I would get the abuse I need and my boyfriend would get a "lesson" in the art of sub/dom sex. But ...

1. Am I being a selfish bitch?

2. Is it a bad sign that he's not satisfying me sexually at three months?

3. Thank you!

Needs Some Abuse


1. You have needs, NSA, and you're articulating them clearly. You're being considerate and deliberate. And, yeah, you're also being a selfish bitch.

Good for you.

We all have a right to be a little selfish when it comes to sex. You have needs and you want your gorgeous boyfriend to meet them. Why? Because you want to stay with him. Showing him how to meet your needs -- even if that requires bringing in the kinky ex for a tutorial -- is one way to make that happen. The current boyfriend agreed to the threesome idea quickly because he can see that. Take yes for an answer!

2. Some couples click right away, and some couples take some time to find their groove. My boyfriend doesn't allow me to write about our sex life in any detail -- privacy is his kink -- but he will allow me to say this: The sex we're having at 15 years is a lot better than the sex we were having at 15 weeks. So don't despair that your boyfriend isn't totally satisfying you at three months. We got there (within a year), and you can too.

3. No, NSA, thank you. It's not often that a letter from a straight reader forces me to go lie down in a dark room with a warm washcloth over my eyes. The threesome you describe is beyond hot; you'd be a fool not to go for it, and I'd be drummed out of the Brotherhood of Amalgamated Male Sex Advice Columnists Who Are Men (Local 609) if I didn't urge you to go for it. This threesome will help your current boyfriend up his game, thereby saving this relationship, or it will provide you with memories that you'll cherish for the rest of your life. (And by "cherish for the rest of your life," I mean "masturbate about for decades to come.") Either way, you win. Go for it, and please send a full report after it's all over.


I'm dating a woman who happens to be another chap's wife. He knows. In fact, he sometimes joins in. The problem is that he had cancer some years back. It's in remission, but his immune system was hit hard. How his body would deal with various sexually transmitted infections is in question. Would a "treatable" strain of syphilis mess him up?

I love my lady friend -- but since I'm dating around, we've started looking up info on the Internet about "safe sex" and have found a lot of contradictory info. You can get hepatitis B from kissing? HPV can sneak around condoms? Gonorrhea is starting to become antibiotic resistant? All this is making her feel like I might unintentionally expose her other beloved to something nasty.

Does "100 percent safe sex" even exist? Is there any way to protect my lover's husband?

Daunted By Threesome Reality


There's no such thing as "100 percent safe sex," just as there's no such thing as "100 percent safe chicken salad." (Sorry -- just saw Food, Inc.) There is only safer sex: Use condoms when appropriate, have more sex with fewer partners, get regular STI screenings.

That said, hepatitis B is almost never transmitted by kissing, and there's a 100 percent effective vaccine for it. And while HPV can sneak around condoms, there's a highly effective HPV vaccine, too. And there are effective treatment options for those drug-resistant strains of gonorrhea. As for your lady's man's immune system ...

"If his cancer has been in remission for years, his immune system would be considered completely healthy," says Dr. Barak Gaster, my medical consultant at the University of Washington. "Even when an immune system is decimated by heavy chemo, it's amazingly able to reconstitute itself."

But the only way to ensure that you're not introducing an STI into your triad is to commit, for the time being, to having sex with only these two people.


A new euphemism: When someone cheats on a spouse, that should be known as "hiking the Appalachian Trail" in honor of South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford.

But I have to say that this Adultery Confessional Theater is getting tired. Can our culture start to deflate the drama on extramarital affairs? Bill Clinton, Eliot Spitzer, Larry Craig, Jon and Kate, John Ensign, Mark Sanford: Yes, it sucks if kids are involved and it often leads to divorce. But I wonder if setting the panic bar a bit lower wouldn't save more marriages. Maybe we should embrace the fact that few of us will remain monogamous over the long life of a marriage and remove sex from the pressured center of domestic life.

Anne In NJ


My reaction when the Sanford scandal broke could be summed up in six words: Dying* is easy; monogamy is hard.

I'm with you, and I have hammered away at those points for years: At the bottom of all these sex scandals -- Sanford, Ensign, Spitzer, et al. -- is our unnatural fixation on monogamy. Human beings aren't wired to be monogamous, and the shock with which we're required to greet each new revelation of infidelity on the part of a celebrity would be comical if the costs weren't so great. Elevating monogamy over all else -- insisting that it is the sole measure of love and devotion -- destroys countless families and careers.

Which is not to say that people shouldn't honor their commitments, or that there aren't folks out there capable of remaining monogamous. Or that the hypocrisy of assholes like Sanford -- who called on President Clinton to resign during Monicagate -- isn't worthy of censure.

But think of all the people who've cheated and gotten caught. Now think about all the people who've cheated and gotten away with it. Our idealized notions about sex are at war with who and what we are. Sex is powerful; relationships are fragile. Why on earth do we insist on pitting them against each other?

* Physically, politically.

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