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Freyed Nerves

Joe Newton

I am a 37-year-old heterosexual woman in a monogamous relationship with a het cis male. Let’s call him “Rick.” We’ve been together for five years and engaged for two. Our sex went from passionate, fun, and frequent early in the relationship to nearly nonexistent now. I have gently initiated conversations about how to spice it up—sexy dates, sex toys, new positions, even non-monogamy—but Rick never took me up on any of my suggestions. I encouraged him to get bloodwork done, thinking maybe it was a decline in testosterone or something. I loved him and was legitimately concerned. I also made the pact with myself that I could live with only having sex 4-5 times a year because Rick brought so much “good” to the table. Outside of sex, our relationship is supportive, positive, and fun.

Fast forward: I recently learned that Rick has a profile on an...

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... that Rick has a profile on an online dating app. We are not in an open relationship, even though I’d offered that as a possible solution to our sex woes. After some mild questioning, his story unraveled. He admitted to exchanging sexy pics and videos with more than 20 women on the internet over the last few years. He was apparently going into our spare bedroom or bathroom to make and send these videos—sometimes when I was home, sometimes when I was waiting in bed for him. After talking with a friend, she confided in me that Rick’s ex had discovered dozens of sexting convos on Rick’s phone with strangers when they were together. My questions are both general and specific to me. First, is it possible for someone to be incapable of physical intimacy when there is love involved? I’m no expert, but it strikes me as troubling that Rick can’t make love with me—going so far as to blame it on hormonal shifts—when it’s not biological at all; he just prefers to jerk off with strangers. Is this actually a thing? Only being physically attracted to an anonymous, impersonal, meaningless stranger? My next question is: Is there hope for a future with Rick when he is lying to me—a GGG partner who wanted to work through this—and also lying to himself? I think I know the answer, but: am I better off alone? Sick Of Rick’s Dick Image Doings Yes, SORDID, some people are incapable of being physically intimate when love is involved. There are straight men out there with what’s called Madonna-whore complexes; these men can’t make love with and/or fuck women they love and respect. These men view sex as dirty and degrading, and they don’t wanna do dirty and degrading things with (or to) women they have feelings for. Frankly, I don’t know what would be worse: being married to man that refused to fuck me (because he respected me too much) or being fucked by a man like that (because he didn’t respect me at all). On the flip side, there are straight women who seem to have husband-material complexes. There are guys they can see themselves married to and possibly having kids with—husband material, e.g., good, kind, reliable guys—but those aren’t the men they’re excited about fucking. Instead, it’s bad, unkind, unreliable guys that turn these women on. Oh, and there’s a new type of long-term, committed, romantic partner out there who doesn’t wanna fuck people they love: freysexuals. A freysexual may love their romantic partner and wanna marry that person and make a life with them, SORDID, but a freysexual doesn’t wanna and/or can’t fuck someone they have strong and/or any feelings for. Basically, love is erotic kryptonite to the freysexual. Being freysexual doesn’t excuse your fiancé’s dishonesty, SORDID, assuming he is freysexual. Simply put, if your fiancé is freysexual and knew that about himself—even if he didn’t know there was a word/bespoke sexual orientation for him—he should’ve disclosed that to you. And if he only just realized it, he should’ve accepted your invitation to renegotiate the terms of your commitment, i.e., take you up on your offer to have an ethically non-monogamous relationship. (For the record: I’m not suggesting that freysexuality isn’t a legitimate sexual orientation—freysexuals already have their own pride flag, and we all know how high that bar is—but I am suggesting freysexuals shouldn’t make sexually-excusive commitments to romantic partners or demand sexually-exclusive commitments from romantic partners.) Whatever the deal is with your fiancé, SORDID, weddings are not famous for reviving sexually moribund relationships. So, if you want more than supportive, positive, and fun vibes from your future husband—if you want regular and decent sex on top of all that—don’t marry this guy. But if the idea of being in a companionate marriage with this man appeals to you, SORDID, that’s something you should explore with the help of a couples’ counselor. Oh, and if sexting women he barely knows is his primary sexual interest and outlet, SORDID, your fiancé already opened your relationship—on his end. There’s no reason you should have to wait to open it on your end. My partner and I recently bought a bar in a small town, far from the city we’d lived in, which has been both fun and challenging. Anyway, a couple started coming in and quickly became very talkative about their personal situation. She’s a straight-presenting women, he’s a bisexual man, they have an open relationship. At first I thought, okay, great. It’s a small community, and I’m glad they feel comfortable being themselves in our place. But their behavior has rapidly escalated, however, to the man making comments to staff members that are inappropriate, ranging from crude come-ons to telling one all about how ugly and weird his own dick is. I’m guessing that shaming himself like that is a kink for him. But we don’t want to hear his confessions. I need to address it, but I wanted some advice as to how. Shutting down garden-variety horny cis guys is something I have decades of experience with, but I wonder if I should be more delicate here, given their situation. I don’t want anyone to think we are biased, but this behavior is not acceptable, and I need to protect my staff. Boundaries And Respectful Treatment Escape Numbskull Dumbasses P.S. Public Service Announcement: Bartenders are not sex workers. It is lazy and exhausting for people to assume that just because someone’s job is serving and entertaining you, that they also are game for fucking you or your partner or both of you or you and your friends. Double shame on the ones who also hold a gratuity hostage while you politely rebuff them. It happens a lot and needs to stop. I’m guessing these people started coming into your bar after you bought it, BARTEND, because the previous owners 86ed them years ago. And I predict their bad behavior is going to escalate the longer you hesitate to 86 these motherfuckers yourself. I’m a 31-year-old straight woman with a quick question. I’ve been in an on-and-off-again relationship with a man since I was 18 years old. I’ve gotten more comfortable dating other men when we’re not “on.” We were “off” for the last year and I had an absolute ball. However, we got back together recently. The problem is my partner seems insecure suddenly and is constantly worried he’s not big enough. He sometimes even half jokes about getting surgery to make his dick bigger. The other night out of the blue he said, “So, since you’re a lot more experienced now, bigger is better, right?” I don’t like this. Honestly, his new insecurities are making me feel less attracted to him and I’m starting to feel like we’ve hit a dead end in our relationship. Is this a sign that we should just break up? Completely Over Comparisons, Kapisce? It’s either an annoying insecurity you won’t be able to put up with, COCK, or your on-and-off-again boyfriend is fumbling the disclosure of a kink. Sometimes when people want to tell their partner about a kink—a long-standing kink or a recently-surfaced one—they’ll frame it negatively. They’ll point to a “crazy” porn clip they stumbled over or share a “gross” story about something a friend did, COCK, in the hopes that their partner will say, “Hey, I don’t think that’s crazy or gross, I think that’s hot!” Since people tend to mirror the attitudes of important people in their lives, and since there’s no more important person than a romantic partner, disclosing kinks like this—framing them negatively so you can deny any interest when your partner invariably reacts negatively—is a terrible strategy. Anyway, your boyfriend is either bringing up his anxiety about the bigger dicks you had during your last “off,” COCK, because he’s desperately insecure and needs constant reassurance that he’s not inadequate or because it turns him on to think about you being with men with bigger cocks and longs to be told that he is inadequate. To figure out what your boyfriend’s issue actually is here—intolerable insecurity, eroticized insecurity—ask him a direct question: “You ask about other men with bigger dicks a lot. Does it turn you on to think about that?” If the answer is yes, COCK, you might be able to make that work; a little dirty talk during sex about bigger guys you’ve been with, maybe a hall pass to go get some bigger dick once in a while. If the answer is no, tell him one last time that you’ve been with some bigger guys, yes, but you like his dick just fine, and you don’t want to talk about it anymore. If he refuses to stop bringing it up, then it’s off again. questions@savagelove.net Listen to Dan on the Savage Lovecast. Follow Dan on Twitter @FakeDanSavage. Columns, podcasts, books, merch and more at savage.love.

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