Category Archives: Dating

An Ending, and New Beginnings

I’ve gotten a few concerned messages from followers of Nice Girls, worried that something had happened to me because my last post was back in January. Well, something did. I finally feel like I can write about it in a way that has at least a small sense of perspective, and isn’t just coming from a place of pain.

Fiancé is no longer my fiancé. We chose to end our engagement a couple of months ago, and we’re still trying to figure out how and where and whether or not we will fit in one another’s future.

Breakups are messy and painful. Ours was not an exception.

It started slowly. The dissolution of his startup had left him depressed and listless. Over the course of six months, he pulled away emotionally, mentally, and physically. We had opened up our relationship, and right at the same time as his startup dissolved, he had found a new partner who he invested the lions share of his energy towards. I had come to depend on him for love, intellectual stimulation, and support, but with his new relationship, I was shunted aside.

I was hurt and angry. I felt abandoned. I actually was abandoned, for days on end, with minimal contact from him. When he would finally decide to spend time with me, I would lash out and demand he listen to my anger and hurt. He responded by retreating further, wrapping himself in the new relationship like a warm blanket, rather than deal with the sobbing, snarling, wreck of a person I had become. Boundaries were trampled, agreements were broken, and our respective ideas of the future were no longer in sync. Lies, deceit, and avoidance grew where love, acceptance, and honesty were supposed to flourish. I went through the stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

I could no longer trust him to be honest with me. He could no longer trust me to be kind. We made the mutual decision that, despite the fact that we still cared for one another, we would be better apart than we were together. There was no big announcement, no huge public blowup. I’ve been fielding questions from friends, as they realize we are no longer “in a relationship” on Facebook.

I am in an unenviable position right now. Because we were living together (and, consequently, living with his girlfriend too. I forgot to mention that.), I am now essentially homeless. I won’t be sleeping on the streets, because I have wonderful friends here (shout out to you guys, you know who you are, and you are AWESOME), but I am adrift yet again. The vast majority of my personal possessions are still in our once-shared room, or in the storage unit we shared. I am living out of a suitcase.

That isn’t the worst part of this whole situation though. When you spend more than three years with someone, your lives are intertwined. We have countless mutual friends. His parents’ house felt more like a home than anywhere else I had been in years. His extended family embraced me wholeheartedly. It is impossible to fully extricate yourself from this sort of relationship. Little things, like pictures from family gatherings on Facebook, that bring me joy to see from others, now feel like a tiny stab in the heart when they come from his family. I had to request no contact for an indefinite period of time, so that I could fully heal, because his late-night “I miss you” texts were simultaneously making me angry and breaking my heart all over again.

I’ve never had to do this sort of adult breakup before. I used to cut all ties when a relationship ended, but that simply isn’t possible, and furthermore, I don’t want to do that. Forcing friends to choose sides simply isn’t in my nature, and if it were, the inevitable result would be disastrous and even more painful. I have no internal road map for this.

I have no idea where my life will take me from here. I’m working a part-time job and looking for full-time employment, but I’m hesitant to lean on my network too much at the moment. Having a roof over my head is a more immediate worry than a full-time job. My current job gives me enough income to eat and to pay my meager bills, but there isn’t much left over afterwards. I’m trying to increase my skill set by learning some programming through Code Academy. I’m dating a lovely new guy who I adore, and he’s been a wonderful respite from my daily worries.

I am okay. I’ll be more than okay. I am going to thrive and grow, both personally and professionally. Thank you for being patient with me, my dear readers.  I am not going to make any promises to you right now about a posting schedule. My posts will likely be sporadic, but I hope that they will increase in frequency again.

To Keep Or Not To Keep… Pubic Hair

Okay, so I had planned on doing a video today, but then I realized that pretty much all of my clothing that isn’t black is currently in the laundry, and I don’t have an alternate backdrop for the studio I film in.  If I were to film in my comfy black sweater, you’d see nothing but a floating head and a lot of hair.  This lead to the realization that if I waited until it was done, then it would be really late, and no one would see the video.  So you get another blog post, yay!  And I put on a ton of makeup (before said realization) for no reason at all, yay!

Someone sent me an anonymous request (via my Survey Monkey!) to do a video or blog post about the debate that rages regarding pubic hair.

I’ve been doing some variation of hair removal for over a decade now.  When I was a teenager, and I was still using pads, I would often trim my pubic hair while sitting on the toilet, with a pair of scissors.  When I had my period, I would often pass clots of blood and tissue, and they would sometimes get tangled in my pubic hair.  I reasoned that it would be easier to clean up during my period if the hair wasn’t quite so long.

Then I read an article in a teen magazine.  A girl had written in, saying that she was nervous about wearing a bathing suit in front of boys because her pubic hair would peek out the sides of her swimsuit bottoms.  She was actually given really good advice.  She was told not to worry about it, and that any boys who made fun of her for it were just immature.  But she was also told that if it really made her nervous and she wanted to, she could use the same razor that she used on her legs to clean up the sides of her pubic hair.

I was about to start doing swim lessons in high school, and it was a co-ed class.  Suddenly, I was nervous about my pubic hair showing on the sides of my bathing suit.  So I started shaving the sides of my pubic hair.  I kept doing this for years: trimming the long stuff near my labia, and shaving the sides when I knew I was going to be in a swimsuit.

I am pretty sure that my initial decision to actually go ahead and shave all of my pubic hair was out of curiosity.  I had read about it in ladies magazines (yes, again, my beauty and hygiene regimen was influenced by someone else having issues about their body), I had heard friends talk about it, and I was curious what it would feel like. So I took an extra long shower and decided to shave it all off.  My (now ex) husband really liked it, and asked me to keep doing it.

It felt weird, but it didn’t feel more weird than the sensation after shaving my legs.  I was really aware of the fact that my entire vaginal area felt different for a couple of days afterwards.  And then the hair started to grow back.  It itched.  It was prickly.  Some of the hair had trouble breaking back through the skin, so I had ingrown hairs, and not only did those itch too, but I had to take a pair of tweezers to my skin to get them out.  Even weirder though, was that the hair that grew back in was different.  Before I shaved my pubic hair, it had been curly and kind of rough.  Now, much like the hair on my head, it was straight and smooth.  I let it grow out a little more, but now that it was growing differently, it became hard to have sex without the hair being pulled (and sometimes, even pulled out).

So I continued shaving and letting it grow out and repeating the process.  I’ve also waxed the hair, and I find I actually prefer to do that over shaving it.   I would prefer to just let it be, but unfortunately, I can’t, unless I want to have pain during sex.

The makeup wasn't a waste!  YAY!

I didn’t intend on giving the personal history of my pubic hair, but there you go, I suppose.

Now let’s talk about the pros and cons of removing your pubic hair.  This list goes for anyone who is considering removing it, whether you identify as male, female, or any other gender.

Pros:

  1. Some people think it feels better to have no hair on their genitals.
  2. Long history!  People have been doing it since the days of Ancient Greece and Egypt.
  3. No stress about pubic hair peeking out of your bathing suit, if that’s the kind of thing you stress about.
  4. Pubic lice?  Not a problem.  You’ve destroyed their natural environment.
  5. Some people have a preference for minimal body hair.

Cons:

  1. Razor burn
  2. Ingrown hairs
  3. Awkward to actually do by yourself
  4. Creates microscopic tears in the skin
  5. Increased risk of contracting an STI due to the microscopic tears (they’re open wounds!)
  6. Some loss of sensitivity in the area (those hairs have nerve endings in the follicles)
  7. Increased friction between your skin and your clothing.

Ultimately, the decision is up to you.  Hair in your pubic area isn’t gross, or unhygienic.  It has a purpose.  It’s also okay to remove it, but you have to take extra precautions with preventing infections.  Above all, don’t do it if you’re just worried about someone telling you that you should remove it.  It is your body.  Do with it what you want.

Nice Girl Dishes Advice: Flirtation and Orgasms!

First advice requests!  Do you have a burning question?  You can ask me anything, completely anonymously, through this link.

Hello Nice Girl,

I am a young woman in my late twenties. I am friends with this couple, and I always enjoy spending time with them. I particularly enjoy spending time with the woman. I think she’s pretty awesome. They are in an open relationship.

The man in the couple is pretty flirty with me, and it makes me uncomfortable. I’ve never said anything to him or his girlfriend about it. I asked a mutual friend to help me handle it, and he said he didn’t know what to do so that friend asked another mutual friend. I’m not sure what else happened, because I haven’t talked to anyone else since then.

I know from your blog that you’re in an open relationship. Did I do the right thing?

Thanks.

Well, letter-writer, the short answer is no, I don’t think you did the right thing. I think you did the cowardly thing. You state in your letter that you haven’t said anything to either person in that couple, and that you brought other friends into the situation. That is really immature, and you might have ruined your friendship with that couple.

Preach on, Dita.

Preach on, Dita.

Everyone deals with rejection. Everyone. But you didn’t give this guy the ability to handle that rejection by talking to him, or even by talking to his girlfriend about the fact that you are uncomfortable. Instead, you chose to talk about him, behind his back, to a friend and that person has decided to talk to yet another friend. This is how reputation-damaging rumors start, even among adults.

I would suggest that the next time you are in a situation where you are not interested in someone and they are being flirty, you take some initiative, be assertive, and tell him or her that you are not interested. It isn’t easy, I know, but learning to deal with an uncomfortable situation is part of being an adult.

I’d be willing to bet that, had you talked to either person in that couple, they would have thanked you for your honesty and the flirting would have stopped immediately.

Assertively yours,
Nice Girl

Nice Girl,

I’ve never had an orgasm during sex, I only have them via clit stimulation (generally oral). I’ve never found my g-spot. After reading ’50 Shades of Grey’, it struck me how misled we are about it. We’re taught that, when we’re in the right moment, penetrative orgasms (generally multiples) happen naturally, and if they don’t, then there must be something wrong.

I have never had a penetrative orgasm (not for lack of trying), but find that I am still susceptible to the idea that there must be something wrong with me (when, logically, I know there’s not).

I was reading about the a-spot and my guy and I went on a hunt for it. I think he found it, but it just felt like I REALLY had to pee. I’ve heard that’s normal, but I found it more uncomfortable than pleasurable. Ideas? Suggestions?

For starters, letter-writer, and I want to stress this as much as possible, YOU ARE TOTALLY NORMAL. Only 11% of women ever experience a penetrative orgasm. Ever. The pervasive myth that women should immediately be multi-orgasmic just sets everyone up for disappointment and a sense of failure.

The vast majority of women only experience an orgasm through clitoral stimulation.

If orgasming during intercourse is something that is important to you and your partner (and if it is important to you, then it should also be important to your partner), then I would recommend he either stimulate your clitoris with his hands, or you can incorporate a vibrator during sex. I personally recommend trying something like a bullet vibrator, where you can vary the speed of the vibration if things get too intense or you need more stimulation. (By the way, if you purchase anything through that link, you’re helping to support Nice Girls! I’m now an affiliate with Good Vibrations. Go me!)

Of course, it is always harder for a woman to reach orgasm if she is stressed, so make sure that you’re not putting too much pressure on yourself. Anxiety is a major block for sexual pleasure.

As for the a-spot (and the g-spot), it is generally accepted that they are the internal extensions of the clitoris. It is also totally normal that you felt like you needed to pee, as your partner was probably also putting pressure on your bladder. The next time that you go hunting for pleasure centers inside your vagina, it is always a good idea to make sure that you have gone to the bathroom beforehand.

Pleasurably yours,
Nice Girl

What do you think of my advice?  Did I miss anything?  Let me know in the comments section!

Cute Date Ideas for Valentine’s Day!

Oh, Valentine’s Day.  Aside from Christmas, this is the number one holiday fraught with crazy expectations.  You can hardly go into the grocery store or drugstore without being bombarded with cutesy heart-themed items, oversized stuffed animals, and reminders that if you don’t make dinner reservations and spend a lot of money, you don’t REALLY love your significant other. It’s exhausting.  Not everyone has the money to get a dozen red roses, a card, and reservations at that really cute restaurant with the overpriced prix fixe menu; or to spend a bunch of money on makeup, a new dress with accessories, and a cute hairstyle at the salon. So, as a service to you, dear readers, I have scoured the internet for some of the cutest date ideas that don’t cost a ton of money, or ideas to spend the day with other single friends.

If You’re Single And Hanging Out With Other Single Friends:

  • Buy a bunch of pretty but cheap flowers, like carnations, and hand them out to strangers on the street.
  • Go somewhere cheap to eat (like a fast food restaurant), dressed to the nines (do each other’s hair and makeup beforehand), and giggle at the people who give you weird looks.
  • Invite your friends over to your house for a nice dinner.
  • Buy movie theater candy, make some popcorn, and watch a movie that is anti-Valentine’s Day, like My Boyfriend’s Back, or any of the ones mentioned in this article.  My girlfriends and I used to do this!
  • Do a “secret valentine”, similar to a secret santa, and send your friends notes to tell them how much you appreciate them.

If You’re Attached And Don’t Want To Spend A Lot Of Money:

  • Cook dinner at home, and then go out afterwards for cocktails and dessert. (Thanks to Moneycrashers!)
  • Find a local arcade, bring a roll of quarters, and challenge your date to a game of Street Fighter.  If you’re in the SF Bay Area, like me, Musée Mécanique at Fisherman’s Wharf is an excellent choice.
  • Play hooky from work and spend the whole day in bed together.
  • Order a pizza and ask them to put the pepperoni in the shape of a heart.  Have some wine ready, snuggle under a blanket, and watch that movie on your Netflix queue that you’ve always meant to watch.
  • If you live in a city, go to the local park and find a water fountain. Take a bunch of pennies and make wishes one at a time out loud while throwing them in.
  • If it’s too cold, make a picnic inside with hot chocolate. (This one and the water fountain are from Londonlady.)
  • Go on a late night drive.  Find somewhere to stop and get a nice coffee.
  • If you’re following me on Facebook, then you’ve already seen this!  And if you’re not, then you should definitely click that button on the right!

Unusual Date Ideas

Am I missing anything?  What are your plans for Valentine’s Day?

DrinkSavvy

Because I am a terrible procrastinator, and I am desperately trying to stop doing so many “This thing makes me so ANGRY! HULKSMASH!” kind of posts, I was browsing Tumblr earlier for some post ideas.  I found a few really awesome things, like the Hawkeye Initiative, where a talented artist has taken to re-drawing the poses of female comic book characters as Hawkeye.  If you need to giggle a bit, and then weep when you realize how ridiculous female comic book characters are drawn, take a look.  But that wasn’t enough for a whole blog post.

But this?  This is seriously cool.

DrinkSavvy is the brainchild of Mike Abramson, and his invention could save lives.  How many times have you heard to “never leave a drink unattended”, or “watch your drink, you might get drugged”?  I know that I have definitely had my drink spiked by someone that I trusted, while I was dating him.  Normally, this sort of advice is directed towards young women, but the creator was inspired after being drugged himself.

DrinkSavvy is a series of products (cups, glasses, straws and stirrers) that actually change color in the presence of GHB, a common “date rape” drug.  Although it has a slightly salty taste, GHB is colorless and odorless, and can be difficult to detect in a flavored drink.  Here’s what GHB can do to a person, according to Wikipedia:

Its effects have been described anecdotally as comparable with alcohol and ecstasy use, such as euphoria, disinhibition, enhanced sensuality and empathogenic states. At higher doses, GHB may induce nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, agitation, visual disturbances, depressed breathing, amnesia, unconsciousness, and death. The effects of GHB can last from 1.5 to 3 hours, or even longer if large doses have been consumed. Consuming GHB with alcohol is dangerous as it can lead to vomiting in combination with unrouseable sleep, a potentially lethal combination.

If these products become widespread, then we can effectively eliminate one tool in the date rapist’s arsenal.  Do me a favor, share this indiegogo campaign on every social media platform you currently use.  I want to see these used in every bar in the US.

I donated to the campaign, will you?

Random Ramblings

I am suffering from some serious writer’s block.  I was unexpectedly too busy to post yesterday, but I’ve had a couple of hours to write, and I just don’t have a topic that I can write a full post about today.  So today, you get snippets of things that are rolling around in my brain.

First off, can we please STOP calling other women “whores” and judging them for having sex?  One of my family members shared this on her Facebook wall, and it made me see red.  Oh, don’t get me wrong, I have definitely judged other girls that I didn’t know well, and called them “whore”.  But you know what?  I look back at those times, and every single time, it was an insult made out of jealousy.

You heard me.  I have called other women awful names because I was jealous.  I was jealous because I thought they were prettier, or because they had a nicer body, or they wore clothing that I could never pull off, or they were more socially confident than me, or they were better at flirting, or they had the attention of the guy that I thought was cute/dating/liked.  Look deep within yourself when you decide to label someone “whore” or “slut”.  Unless that person actually works in the sex industry, chances are, the reasons behind your loathing of another person is actually emotions that you’re directing at yourself.

Calling somebody else fat won’t make you any skinnier. Calling someone stupid doesn’t make you any smarter. And ruining Regina George’s life definitely didn’t make me any happier. All you can do in life is try to solve the problem in front of you.  – Cady from 2004’s Mean Girls

I’d like to add that calling someone a whore doesn’t make your sex or love life any better.

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A couple of weeks ago, I was trying to be funny on the Nice Girls twitter account, and joked that The Ultimate Guide to Kink by Tristan Taormino was so sexy, I was scared I’d run out of batteries.

One of my followers, who is also a friend of mine in real life, said that I should invest in a Hitachi Magic Wand.  When I replied that I didn’t really have the money to spend on it, she actually bought me one!  It gets delivered tomorrow, and you can expect a review after I’ve taken it for a test drive.

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There are some really amazing conferences that I want to attend, but I always find out about them too late.  I really wanted to go to CatalystCon, the Good Vibrations Sex Summit, and I barely found out about Arse Elektronika in time to attend one day of the conference.  How does one go about getting on the mailing list for these things?  Readers, if you hear about an interesting sex conference that you’d like to see me at, or read about on Nice Girls, could you let me know about it?

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I read what seemed to be a really amazing, sex positive, open relationship positive book called Sperm Wars: Infidelity, Sexual Conflict, and Other Bedroom Battles.  I say that it seemed to be that way, because up until the final chapter, it was purely discussing how women and men are programmed to seek out partners outside of their primary relationships, and it even had some interesting theories regarding homosexuality.  In the last chapter, it had a cloying story about an elderly couple and how being monogamous throughout their entire lives was the best possible reproductive strategy.  It seemed like an odd way to end an otherwise open minded and rather engaging book.  I’m still wrestling with how to review it properly.

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In the interest of giving Nice Girls some more diverse voices, I am approaching some of my fellow sex educators about writing articles or columns for this blog.  I’m also planning on starting a YouTube channel, so that I can interview some of the interesting people I come across in this line of work, and you can see it all!

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Finally, today is the Transgender Day of Remembrance.  I’d like for you all to take a minute, and take a look at that website.

And now, I’d like to challenge you to be a transgender ally.  When you see injustice, bullying, or any sort of hate-motivated violence (whether physical or verbal), take a stand.  Make sure that your words are not going to hurt another.  Intervene.  Call the police, and then stand witness when they arrive.  Make sure that those around you, whether straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or queer, know that you won’t stand there and let someone else hurt them.

I Don’t Care About Your Abstinence, and it Doesn’t Make You Better Than Me

There have been a few recent articles about the “moral case” of either completely abstaining from sex until marriage, or having sex with partners beforehand.

This all started with an incredibly egotistical and almost horrifyingly judgmental article by Steven Crowder on foxnews.com.  In his piece, Crowder calls women who have sex before marriage “floozies”, and is openly disdainful of another couple after meeting the bride at breakfast the morning after their wedding.  That newly married man’s crime?  Deciding to drink at his wedding.

The people next to us that morning? Well, theirs was just one big party.  And the morning after? Just another hangover.

Our “weddings” were the same event in name only. They know it, and we know it.

Honestly?  That is precisely how I envision my wedding next summer: one big party.  I want my family, Fiance’s family, and all of our friends to be there, and to be celebrating our union.  I want dancing and toasting and laughter and fun.  The fact that I am intimately acquainted with Fiance’s nether regions (and vice versa) does not make our wedding, our engagement, or our relationship any less than yours, Mr. Crowder.

Fiance and I lived together for quite some time, and, unlike you, we have already gone through the awkward stages of living together.  We know that we are compatible in practically every way possible, and that includes sexually.  Yes, it still annoys me that he forgets to put his dirty laundry in the hamper, and he is largely baffled by my beauty regimen, but we have reached a point of homeostasis in our relationship and we know that we can actually share the same space.  You’re going to have to learn all of that, and you’re going to have to learn everything about sex.  Don’t worry, Mr. Crowder, I’m here for you and your wife!.

On the other side of the coin, Jill Filipovic (of Feministe fame) wrote a fantastic response article for The Guardian, detailing precisely why it is better to have sex with your partner before a long-term commitment.  I honestly couldn’t have constructed a better article.  This is my favorite quote,

Sex is good whether you’re married or not, and certainly folks who wait until marriage can have a lot of sex once they tie the knot. But waiting until marriage often means both early marriage and conservative views on marriage and gender – and people who marry early and/or hold traditional views on marriage and gender tend to have higher divorce rates and unhappier marriages. We know that, on the other hand, there are lots of benefits to marrying later and to gender-egalitarian marriages. Couples who both work outside the home and also share housework duties have more sex. Financially independent, college-educated women who marry later in life have extremely low divorce rates.

It turns out that feminist values – not “traditional” ones – lead to the most stable marriages. And feminist views plus later marriage typically equals premarital sex.

I wish you luck with your marriage, Mr. Crowder.  I wish you and your wife every happiness.  It’s a pity that you, with your nose in the air, can’t find it in your “Christian” heart to do the same for me and others who are like me.

Some Blogs I Follow

Good afternoon everyone!  I’ve been busy reading books to review for you all on Nice Girls, and I thought that in the meantime, I would share some of the fantastic blogs I follow.

For reading up on feminist issues, these are my top four:

Patriarchy Survivor.  This blog comes from a Facebook page I follow: No, I will NOT be quiet.  This blog has a lot of submitted personal stories, and some of them may be triggering to anyone who has experienced rape, sexual assault, or domestic violence.

Make Me a Sammich.  The author describes this as “a place to read and talk about being a woman in the USA in the 21st century.”  It’s a great description, and she recently started posting some pretty awesome fiction!

Another Angry Woman describes her blog as “Part anarchist. Part feminist. All angry.”

Damn Right I’m a Feminist has shorter posts, mostly about current news articles and some fantastic quotes.  Don’t miss her Sexist Song of the Day posts.

For some reading that is a little lighter in topic and tone (in other words, you’re much less likely to read something that will make you angry), check out these blogs.

Sex Lives of Moms has some occasionally hilarious posts, but offers advice and commiseration for those awesome moms who are struggling with regaining intimacy with significant others.

Online Dating – Why I’ll Soon Be a Crazy Cat Lady always cracks me up.  If you’ve ever tried to find the genuinely good guys in the cesspool that is online dating, you will probably recognize your experiences in her blog.

 

Tomorrow’s post will be a review of Sex at Dawn!

The Nice Girl’s Guide to Fellatio

Ooh!  A saucy and sexy topic to start your Monday off right.  Today’s post is most definitely Not Safe For Work, so for those of you who read Nice Girls at work, you might want to either switch to your mobile device or hold off until you are at home to read this one! Read the rest of this entry

A Call to Men

I recently came across this video on the TED talks website.  It features Tony Porter, the founder of A Call to Men: The National Association of Men and Women Committed to Ending Violence Against Women.

His eloquent 11 minute speech is a work of art.  It was definitely worth the standing ovation he received at the end.

To my male readers: what is your experience with stepping outside the “Man Box”?  Do you believe it is real? If so, what can we do to raise the next generation outside of this “Man Box”?

To my female readers: what are your reactions after watching this?

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