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Struggle Session: Houseboys, Kitties, Doggies, PUDs, MUDs and More!

On Thursdays I respond to comments from my readers and listeners. (It’s still Thursday, right?) These posts are for Magnum Subs. So, if you’re already a sub, thank you and read on! If you’d like to become a sub, you can do that here! Magnum Subs get the Magnum Savage Lovecast (more guests, more calls, no ads), the Maxi Savage Love column (more Q, more A), the Sex & Politics podcast, Struggle Session, Savage Love Live (next one coming up on Valentine’s Day!), and bragging rights: you’re one of my subs!

As ever, I’m whipping this out under deadline pressure and without a copy editor — God, I miss you, Gillian — so if you spot a typo or missing word, let me know in the comments thread so I can correct it!

Alright, let’s get to it…

I predicted at the top of this week’s show that frustrated straight women...

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...Alright, let’s get to it… I predicted at the top of this week’s show that frustrated straight women will choose to live with their best friends and share a submissive houseboy over settling for “unsuitable” male partners and/or MAGA assholes. Says  Guy Incognito… since you mentioned the concept of being the beta male in a household of strong, confident, independent women, i can’t get this perfect fantasy out of my mind. to be their boy toy would be a dream. where do i apply to be considered? Forgive me for getting your hopes up, Guy. There isn’t any evidence — as of yet — that significant numbers of frustrated straight women are choosing to share homes their girlfriends and one subby houseboy. I was only making a prediction about the kinds of social and sexual changes we might see — a decade or more from now — if the emerging political gender divide (women become more progressive, men becoming more conservative) continues to grow. Says Mark at the bad place… Please update your funny gay stereotypes. “Gays don’t know shit about sports” is beyond tired, and makes you sound like you’re stuck in the 80s. Every gay man I know knew who Kelce was prior to Taylor, mostly because they’re football fans. Maybe you need more gay friends. I have lots of gay friends. In fact, I watched that Travis Kelce episode of SNL with two of my gay friends. After the monologue, one turned to me and said, “Who is that?”, and the other waved a hand at the TV and said, “And what is he wearing?” This could be a me-and-my-friends problem, I realize. Selection bias may be at work, as I tend to gravitate toward musical theater people, not sports people, and three gays is a tiny sample. But “gays don’t know shit about sports” is the truth of my lived gay experience and I’m going tell jokes about it. Says CF via email… I tried to let it go and think to myself “He’s not talking about you” regarding your comments about demisexuality on your Sex & Politics talk with Kat Rosenfield this week. I know you said that anyone can identify as whatever they want, but that five seconds of sentiment was surrounded by several minutes of accusing demisexuals of “glomming onto the LGBTQIA+ movement” and using it for social clout. I never came out as demi. I don’t know anyone else who has, and I know — in the real world, not just online — at least a dozen other demi and ace folks. None “weaponize” their labels for social gain. I don’t even know what that gain would be. We use these terms to set expectations for potential dates and partners, because we’re trying to filter out people who will pressure us into sex we’re not interested in or ready for. They’re labels we find helpful to avoid incorrect assumptions and wasted energy. Argue about whether these labels are orientations or preferences or whatever else however you like. I’m not waiting in line at that semantic gate. You and Kat don’t have to respect me. Waving around a document that says “orientation” on it won’t suddenly change that. You make a great point about labels. And for the record… I’ve always pushed back against people who dismiss the importance of labels — “Can’t we just be people? Do we need labels?” — for the reasons you cite: labels are useful. They help us communicate who we are, what we want, and what we don’t want. And lots of things that aren’t sexual orientations have useful labels: monogamy, non-monogamy, polyamory, tolyamory, top, bottom, side, switch, Dom, sub, demi, allo, aro, etc., etc. And like I said during my convo with Kat, I think the label “demi” suits me. I usually have to feel something for someone before I can be sexual with them. Still, I don’t think demi is a sexual orientation — but you can think differently and I can respect you. Which I do. Look, I’m a famously poly person and an advocate for open relationships. If I argued that demi wasn’t a sexual orientation and then turned around and argued that poly was — and some poly people do make that argument — then I could be accused of hypocrisy or picking on demis. But like I said on that episode of Sex & Politics, I feel that if something can be done or felt or enjoyed or preferred by a gay person or a straight person or a lesbian person or a bisexual person — whatever the something we’re talking about might be — then I see it as an activity or an inclination or a preferred relationship model, not a sexual orientation. But others can and do see things differently. Says Zoftig… I really enjoyed the conversation with Kat Rosenfield. I had a whole bunch of things I wanted to talk about in the moment, but of course they’ve all left my mind. After Dan’s intro, I was almost expecting an Ann Coulter type, but I found Kat articulate, well reasoned, and very interesting to listen to. It’s a little sad when the left is so fragile that a woman who has her own authentic opinions has to be apologized for when they don’t fall into lockstep with the prevailing norms. But hasn’t that always been the case. (Dan, I know why you did it, it’s just frustrating that you had to!) I appreciated her insights on demisexuals. I’m old enough that I missed having to label my sexuality outside of the straight/gay/bi, but young enough that I sympathize with the desire to do so. To the degree that I would now use the term demi myself, it’s not so much to describe an “orientation” but to explain my arousal patterns and how I approached the world of dating and mating. Which is think is the key to it all. Another satisfied customer… Dan, you know how you point out how Republicans lack empathy until they’re personally affected by something? That’s you, gleefully sharing MURDER THE CATS rhetoric as if you care, even one bit, about facts and stats and reasonable arguments on this topic. You’ve made it very clear over the years you’re the kind of person who can share a home with dogs and still avoid feeling even the most cursory of attachment for them. Most people, given exposure to animals, become animal people. You are not an animal person. Personally, I think it’s a character flaw, but it’s not like I’ve been holding it against you. Been a Magnum Sub for years and a listener before that. I can have compassion for you even when your ability to feel compassion falls short of covering all the non-human sentient creatures I care about. That said, lacking empathy in this area, you should probably take your own advice and simply not talk about cats. Don’t vote about cats. Don’t share news articles featuring other people talking about cats. I know you’re not vegan, so don’t pretend you give a shit about birds either. Just SHUT UP re: animals. I eat a lot of chicken — and the occasional duck — but I nevertheless reserve the right to be disturbed by the huge numbers of birds killed every year by “outdoor” cats. And I said as much when I tweeted something about Jonathan Franzen’s excellent piece in the New Yorker on the failures and cruelties of the “no kill” movement. (Franzen persuasively argues that the “no kill” movement is cruelest to cats.) And while I’ve never been much an animal person, I am quite fond of our dogs — as the dog lovers in my life can attest — and I honestly don’t think a person incapable of loving an animal could’ve written something like this. Says Thingamajig… The difference between PUD and MUD is that “monogamy or GTFO” is often what the two parties agree to in advance — sometimes they even stand up in front of a room full of their friends and family and say it. “Say you want a monogamous commitment and then when your lives are intertwined insist on monogamy” seems like much less of a rug pull than “Say you want a monogamous commitment and then when your lives are intertwined insist on polyamory.” Non-monogamy is a spectrum and there are lots of points along that spectrum before you arrive at polyamory: monogamish, tolyamory, DADT, “no one we know,” “not in our time zone,” “happy endings are fine,” soft swap, swinging, threesomes, FWBs, etc. And while asking your spouse to open your monogamous relationship is a big deal — or a big rug pull — that sometimes results in one person being PUD (polyamorous under duress), demanding that a spouse continue honor the monogamous commitment they made to you after you’ve decided you’re not interested in fucking them anymore — also a pretty big rug pull — often results in a person being MUD (monogamous under duress). And while many PUDs become happily poly in time, very few MUDs are ever happily monogamous again. Stupid new rules just dropped… Porn is cheating, strip clubs are cheating, lusting over bikini models on Instagram is cheating, reading spicy books is cheating. Stop accepting and enabling gross behavior. — The Feminist Turned HouseWife (@thefemturned) February 3, 2024 Remember, kids: cheating is unforgivable and everything is cheating. And since you can’t just sit there doing nothing — and since literally anything you do counts as cheating — you might as well get it over with and just fucking cheat already. Says Michael via email… As a renowned theatre gay, I’m confused that Dan has yet to promote Hazbin Hotel. Is Hazbin Hotel a professionally voiced Broadway show? Yes. Is it masquerading as a cartoon? Also yes, so what? Is it split over eight episodes on Amazon Prime? Yes, it is. Is it also so wildly queer that it would never see the light of day were it not for the backwater of Amazon Prime? Perhaps the BIGGEST yes of all. Also, the character of Lucifer Morningstar is played by Jeremy Jordan. Who doesn’t like Jeremy Jordan? Here’s the trailer for Hazbin Hotel — looks like fun! One for the ages… God knows why, but I just remembered my favourite ever Savage Love letter, from almost twenty years ago. Under the circumstances, @fakedansavage‘s advice was better than anyone had any right to expect. pic.twitter.com/mlrzmfY2Dv — Tom Doran (gypsum.fantastic on Threads) 🇺🇦 🇬🇧 (@portraitinflesh) February 5, 2024 And finally… Struggle Session’s Muppet-faced Man of the Week — as nominated by Delta35 — Macrumors’ Hartley Charlton!

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