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STRUGGLE SESSION: Roasting Quarterbacks, Prying Moms, Amputating Limbs and More!

I’ve been having a little trouble getting it up lately — I’m referring to Struggle Session here (ahem) — as I’ve been traveling and/or under the weather mid-week for the last few weeks. Also, what was supposed to be a breezy 800-1000 word weekly post quickly metastasized into 2500-3000 word weekly post. That was no one’s fault but my own — no one was holding a gun to my head and telling me to go long — but it became a psychological hurdle. So, I’m gonna try to dial back the length of these posts in the hopes of getting them up every week. If that doesn’t work — if I can’t help but go long — I might make Struggle Session a biweekly post. — Dan

On Thursdays I respond to comments from readers and listeners. These posts are for Magnum Subs exclusively. So, if you’re already one of my subs, thank you and read on!...

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...ly. So, if you’re already one of my subs, thank you and read on! If you’d like to become my sub, do it now! Magnum Subs get the Magnum Lovecast (more guests! more calls! no ads!), the Maxi Savage Love (more Q! more A!), Sex & Politics, Savage Love Live, Struggle Session, and bragging rights: you’re one of my subs! This came in via email… I just watched the Tom Brady Roast on Netflix. I was amazed at how many jokes there were calling him gay and making gay references. It’s disheartening to hear that people still resort to using someone’s sexual orientation as a punchline or insult. I was born gay and I’m proud to be gay. I’m not lesser than anyone, I’m not weaker than anyone, in fact I’m strong, well-adjusted, successful, help others and contribute to my community. Dan, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject. I still haven’t found the time to see Challengers but that didn’t stop me from sharing my thoughts about the film. So, I’m gonna go ahead and share my thoughts about the Tom Brady Roast, which I also haven’t seen: I don’t for one second doubt that offensive gay jokes were told — celebrity roasts are all about offensive jokes — but it surely wasn’t just gays who were the butt of offensive jokes told during the show. Seems to me… that if you were only offended by the anti-gay jokes because you’re gay… then your outrage is rather selective. We don’t get to laugh along at offensive jokes told about other groups and then get huffy when it’s our turn in the barrel. If it’s any consolation, Tom Brady regrets doing the roast just as much as you regret watching it. (I’m a huge Nikki Glaser fan — she reportedly killed it during the show — but I’m going to watch her new standup special on HBO instead.) I brought up the hit film Challengers at the top of the podcast two weeks ago and mentioned it again at the top of the show last week — despite, again, not having seen the film — in order to express my pre-disappointment that the MFM threesome teased in the trailer fails to materialize in the film. Tyler Curtain jumped into the comments to say… Challengers: so disappointing, especially since Josh O’Connor is incandescently sexy. Hollywood’s inability to film hot gay sex makes the depiction of sex in Fellow Travelers (2023) all the more extraordinary. Also, Mike McCahill’s ego-puncturing phrase about Challengers — “a Muppet Babies redo of Jules and Jim” — made me guffaw and wince and then laugh out loud. Mike Faist >>> Josh O’Connor. A 77-year-old listener called to ask if he was the only person with his particular fantasy: being a weak boy and/or girl overpowered by much strong girls and/or women. BiDanFan thinks I overlooked something… Dan, I think you missed a possibility with the 76-year-old caller. There may be two things going on with this person: (1) yes, a not uncommon fantasy of being overpowered by strong women, but also (2) this person may be transgender. The caller asked if it was common to have a lifelong fantasy of being a girl. Among trans women, yes, that is extremely common! I think the caller should find a sex positive therapist or perhaps a support group and explore this possibility. It is not too late for the caller to live as their authentic self, whether that means simply accepting their kinks and finding someone to engage with, or the bigger step of embracing a new gender. Good luck, Caller. The caller could be transgender — anyone could be — but his fantasies about being a girl (not a woman) are, IMO, an extension of his kink and not a clue about his gender identity. His very first sexual fantasies were about being a weak boy used — sexually — by bigger and stronger girls he couldn’t resist; later he began to fantasize about being a weak girl used by bigger and stronger girls. He could be trans, of course, but I think the obvious/simpler answer is most likely the correct one: he’s a straight guy who fantasizes about being a girl — problematically, some would argue, but let he/she/they amongst us with completely non-problematic sexual fantasies cast the first stone — not because he’s a woman, but because girls are (perceived to be) weaker and being the weaker one turns him on and there’s no weaker one (according to the patriarchy) than a girl. I’m not suggesting a parallel here… but thinking about this caller’s question reminded me of a conversation I had a few years ago with a guy into very intense bondage. He’d always fantasized about being tied up, he said, but he’d recently started fantasizing about having his arms and legs amputated. It wasn’t that he had a severe case of body integrity disorder/dysmorphia, but that being his limbs temporarily (in bondage scenes) turned him on so much that that the idea of being denied use of us his limbs permanently (after a quadruple amputation) had the power to make his hard because dicks are mysterious and terrifying things. Moving on… A recent caller was shocked that her boyfriend confided in his (indiscreet) friends and (nosey) parents about her decision to have her tubes tied. Parents, I said in my response, should be run on a need-to-know basis and mom and dad definitely didn’t need to know that the woman their little boy had been seeing for less than a year didn’t want kids and took steps to make sure she didn’t have any. Another listener felt this guy’s mom actually did need to know about the caller’s tubal ligation. Says Julia… No, “Mum” doesn’t need to know the fertility status of a daughter-in-law. She can know. But she doesn’t need to know. Not now, not after five years marriage, not ever. I’ll go to my grave hammering that the body of a woman is not on the planet to give kids to other people. Other people are not entitled to know what we’ll do with our bodies. Only our partners are. Do I need to know the cholesterol levels of my father-in-law? No. If the “Mum” really needs to pour her motherly love to more kids, she’s welcome to foster kids. I think the parents of adult children in serious and/or committed relationships are allowed to be curious about whether they’re going to be grandparents. I don’t think parents should badger their kids’ partners about it — certainly not at their very first meeting — but there certain decisions the parents of adult children have to make for themselves that could be impacted by the arrival of grandchildren, e.g. moving away after retirement or staying close, wills, estate planning, etc. I was on Therapy Jeff’s podcast this week — Problem Solved — and I said some things lots of people wish weren’t true but sadly are, which prompted a lot of screaming and yelling in the comment threads on Jeff’s posts on Instagram. The wonderful Dr. Zhana defended me from the outraged mob: The number of people in the comments who so vehemently disagree with what @dansavage is saying just shows how much work we still have to do to educate people on the reality of long term relationships. While a VERY small minority of couples maintains high levels of sexual passion for the very long term, this is the exception, not the norm. The norm is exactly what Dan describes and we would all do ourselves a favor to accept that reality. There’s also a separate conversation to be had — that everyone who wants long term monogamy should be having and rarely are — about how to prolong that new relationship passion for as long as possible so its decline is less steep over time. To hear what I said on Problem Solved that had Therapy Jeff’s listeners so outraged — spoiler: it’s pretty much the same shit Savage Lovecast hear every week — my episode of Problem Solved is here. TedTheBellhop took exception to one aspect of my advice for GOOP, the gay wet-and-messy fetishist with a particular thing for pies… “Buy a kid’s pool, pick up a dozen pies at Costco” Or a locally owned bakery, if there is one near you 🙂 If GOOP was actually planning to eat those pies — or if wanted his boyfriend to have some pie on him — I would recommend getting nicer pies from a local indy bakery. But on sourcing pies for WAM play I agree with BiDanFan: “For the purposes of a kink, I’d say go the cheap route.” Possible compromise: GOOP gets ten meh pies from Costco for smooshing and one delicious pie from his local indy bakery for enjoying after the scene is over. Says Jonathan… Costco is perfect for quality + size. I have no objections to WAM, but the cleanup/ick of paint or mud would have me (as the partner) strongly preferring the pie route. Also, surely this person is aware of Dan’s adonis college twunk birthday cake story? My boyfriend read my response to GOOP after it came out and said, “You could do more than ‘wrap your head around’ this person’s kink.” Only then did my encounter with a hot straight college boy with a kink (WAM) and a dream (finding someone who would smash a birthday cake in his face), which I recounted in  Skipping Toward Gomorrah, come back to me. Says Tim Wayne on Threads about my recent convo with The Bulwark’s Tim Miller on Sex & Politics… I heard a 23-minute segment of @timmillergram on @dansavage‘s podcast and it was so great I listened to it again immediately afterwards. I heard twenty years of my own teeth-grinding frustrations articulated in simple, easy-to-understand analogies and examples. Wow. So great. Thanks, you two. I think I might even listen to it again. You’re welcome, Tim! Says Ted on BlueSky… Kirsti Sparboe was singing about tolyamory at Eurovision decades before @dansavage.bsky.social coined the term! The song is titled “Oj, Oj, Oj, Så Glad Jeg Skal Bli” (“Wow, Wow, Wow, How Happy I’ll Be”) and the lyrics — translated into English — go like this: “I’ve got the world’s most handsome guy, that’s for sure/But he has too much of an appetite for miniskirt invites/He runs after Eva, Lise, and Anne/Frolicking like a fish in the sea… Wow, wow, wow, how happy I’ll be/When he no longer needs girls other than me!” That sounds pretty tolyamorous to me! But in a sad display of the tolyphobia so common at the time, “Oj, Oj, Oj, Så Glad Jeg Skal Bli” came in last place. I thanked Ted for sharing Kirsti Sparboe’s trailblazing song about tolyamory in the intro to Lovecast where I talked about the queer representation at Eurovision over the decades. As it turns out, the queers have been a part of Eurovision for a lot longer than I realized. Says Ted in a followup post… Thanks for the mention in this week’s intro! I loved the history of queer participants at Eurovision. Queers have been part of Eurovision since the beginning. Lesbian Dany Dauberson from France competed in the first Eurovision in 1956! And the 1961 contest was won by Jean-Claude Pascal, the first queer winner. His song “Nous les Amoreaux” is about a homosexual relationship. The lyrics don’t refer to the genders of the lovers. Okay, our Muppet-Faced Man of the Week: Mike Motherfucking Faist. I know he was named MFMOTW before, but it’s my gong and I’m gonna gong Mike again because I can. And I’m finally — finally — seeing Challengers tonight!

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