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Joe Newton

Gay dude here. What the fuck is up with monkeypox? Do I need to be worried?

Yes, you do. I tried to raise the alarm about monkeypox on the May 24, 2022, episode of the Savage Lovecast, back when there were 100 cases in 15 countries, all of them among gay and bi men. Now there are more than 5,000 cases all over the world, and almost all of them—more than 99% of cases—are among gay and bi men.

“Right now, it’s behaving very much like an STI—and almost all of the cases have been among men who have sex with men,” said Dr. Ina Park, a professor at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine and Medical Consultant at the Centers for Disease Control Division of STD Prevention.

Monkeypox, Dr. Park explains, is the milder, gentler cousin to smallpox, and is spread by skin-to-skin contact or through...

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...d is spread by skin-to-skin contact or through respiratory droplets. “But anyone who comes into close contact with someone who has monkeypox could catch it,” said Dr. Park. “And unlike other STIs which don’t live for very long outside the body, monkeypox can live for weeks on infected clothing, bedding, and other surfaces—think dildoes, slings, fetish gear—and barriers such as condoms worn over the penis or inside the rectum will protect those areas, but they don’t prevent transmission to other exposed parts of the body. If you notice red painful bumps anywhere on you or your partner’s body—especially the genital/anal area—or if you are exposed to monkeypox, get checked out right away. The sooner you get vaccinated, the better. Check out some resources for monkeypox here.” (Follow Dr. Park on Twitter @InaParkMd.) Okay, that was a quickie question but a long answer. Now onto quickier-quickies.  How soon is too soon to say “I love you” for the first time? On your first date, right after a stranger from an app shows up at your door, during your first threesome with that hot couple you just met a bar—too soon. Even if you’re already feeling it, even if you’re crazy enough to think they might be feeling it already too, you should wait at least six months to say it. But you know what? Once you’ve said it—once you’ve said “I love you” for the first time—feel free to backdate that shit. Go ahead and say, “I wanted to say it before the entrée even came on our first date,” or, “I wanted to say it when you showed up looking better than your pics,” or, “I wanted to say it when you both came inside me simultaneously.” Is it an overreaction for me, a cis woman who lives in Wisconsin and doesn’t want kids, to not want to have sex with my fiancé since the ruling on abortion? I’ve tried to explain to him that it’s a lot to come to terms with. Each of us grieves in our own way, and at our own pace. If you’re not feeling sexy right now because of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade—if the chance of an unplanned pregnancy in Wisconsin, where a law from 1849 banning abortion can now be enforced, dries you up—that’s totally understandable. And if your fiancé is anxious to get back to penetrative sex, well, pegging counts. A submissive guy reached out to me via my pretty tame Instagram and wants to send me money and wants nothing in return. Should I say no to this? In this economy? New to weed. Best edible for sex? Ass. What is it called when a guy jacks off into his own mouth while he’s upside down? Is there a term for that? I don’t think that has a name. Any suggestions, class? Being spanked until I’m sobbing is the only way I’ve ever been able to get off. I masturbate after while being held. It’s literally the only thing that has ever worked for me and my boyfriend of two years won’t do it. Don’t just tell me to dump him. I love him. He is also against opening the relationship. Help? Okay, don’t dump him. Don’t dump the man who refuses to do the one thing that gets you off. He may have good reason for refusing to do that one thing; spanking a person you love to the point where they’re sobbing… is not a small ask. That could be emotionally tricky for a person with a history of abuse or trauma; for others, it could just be a libido-killing turn-off. (No one should have to cite a traumatic experience to get out of doing something in bed that they just don’t wanna do.) But if your boyfriend won’t open the relationship just enough to let you get these needs met elsewhere and you’re unwilling to leave him (yet), well, then no orgasms for you (until you leave or cheat). Would you ever create an encyclopedia of your advice for posterity? I so often ask myself, “What would Day say?” It would be handy to have a reference. Already created one: Savage Love from A to Z, published last year, to mark the 30th Anniversary of this column, covering everything from anal (chapter one!) to zilch (chapter twenty-six!), with stops along the way for GGG and DTMFA and monogamish and pegging and boredom and kink and more. Beautifully illustrated by Joe Newton, Savage Love from A to Z is available wherever books are sold. Best sex toy for lesbians? I feel like me and my partner keep striking out. Is there anything out there made by women for women? What am I missing? Help! There are lots of sex-toy companies founded by women that feature toys designed and engineered and marketed by women—Dame Products, Lioness, MysteryVibe, and Maude, to name just a few—but if you’ve tried the obvious choices (vibrators, strap-ons, clit suckers, etc.) and struck out, well, then maybe you need to think outside the sex toy box. Anything that excites a person can be a sex toy… like a roll of duct tape. For most people, not a sex toy. For some people, for people into tight gags or mummification, duct tape is the ultimate sex toy. So, if you haven’t found anything that turns you on in a sex toy shop, maybe it’s time to try the hardware store. I am wildly in love with my boyfriend (gay) of one year, and when we have sex, it’s amazing. But it only happens about once a week. I would prefer to be having sex three times as often, especially just one year in! Is this a dealbreaker or just something I have to live with? The longer you’re together, the likelier you are to reach a point where once a week is fine for you. But just as your desire for sex will most likely decline over time, your boyfriend’s will as well. By the time once a week is all you want, once a month may be all he wants. So, right now you need to work out a compromise or an accommodation that leaves you feeling fulfilled without making him feel pressured. If opening the relationship up isn’t an option, maybe a couple of assisted-masturbation sessions between full-blown sex sessions would work. The important thing is for you—for both of you—to show that you can compromise. And you’ll have an easier time doing that during the still-wildly-in-love stage of this relationship than you will during the frustrated-and-resentful-but-somehow-still-in-love stage. I heard someone say they don’t eat for 12-24 hours before bottoming. How often can bottoms have sex if that is how long prep work takes? Just once—because real bottoms die of starvation before their first top finishes inside them. How much dick is too much dick? “Enough is as good as a feast.” — Mary Poppins I had persistent morning sickness during my pregnancy two years ago and still get nauseous very easily. Now, instead of loving sex acts involving cum and pussy juice getting in my mouth, I feel sick just thinking about it. Any tips on increasing my tolerance and getting over this? Instead of forcing yourself to get back to things you used to enjoy—like ingesting bodily fluids—focus on enjoying what works for you right now and maybe exploring some new things you’re curious about. Your desire to swallow cum and/or eat pussy juice might return and it might not, but you won’t miss either of those things if you’re having fun doing the things you’re able to enjoy right now. I have the most common accessory in the lesbian community—religious trauma—along with the two least popular accessories: an ex-husband and a child. Am I doing something unethical by not disclosing this on dating profiles? I almost always disclose on the first date, but all the Gold Star/happily married dykes in my life seem to think this is criminal. Good thing you’re not dating any of your Gold Star/happily married dyke pals, lady, because otherwise their opinions on this subject—exactly when to disclose the existence of the ex and the kid—might actually matter. I’m a 26-year-old woman from the Northeast. Do guys mind/care if the woman they’re sleeping with uses a vibrator during sex? I’m getting back into dating men after being with my girlfriend for three years, and we always used toys. I recently slept with a man and used my vibrator and afterwards he said, “At least one of us can get you off.” What? Don’t fuck that pouty, annoying, passive-aggressive whiner ever again—I mean, obviously not—and before you get with the next guy you wanna fuck, say this: “I need a vibrator to get off during sex. If you’re going to be buttsore about it, there are plenty of 26-year-old women out there who’ll fake an orgasm for you. I’m not one of them.” 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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