Advice

Miss Information

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Have a question? Email erin@nerve.com. Letters may be edited for length, content and clarity.

Dear Miss Information,

Early in my dating career, I settled for casual, sex-focused relationships when I wanted loving, committed ones. Now I want to stop being a slut and start being a girlfriend, but I’m accustomed to a certain pattern: sleep with the person first, build an emotional relationship later. My guy friends tell me I need to hold out. But when I hold out, I end up being the "best friend." I can’t find a healthy balance.

Currently, I have a crush on my neighbor. I kissed him the third time we hung out, and he said, "I liked that, but I have a girlfriend in my old town and I don’t want to be bad to her." He wants to stay in NY, but she doesn’t want to come here. It’s essentially doomed. We hang out almost every day, text constantly and go on date-like excursions. He cooks for me, has met my family, and even drops in on me at work. I don’t know what to make of him. He doesn’t put the moves on me, but will bring my favorite movies over to my house at 11:00 p.m. Once I tried to cozy up to him on the couch. He didn’t push me away, but got really red and awkward about it. WTF?

He’s only been in really long relationships. I’m wondering if this has something to do with it. I am not accustomed to courtship, so I don’t want to delude myself that he’s interested when I haven’t seen the lustful signs. Then again, most of my other experiences have been sex-centered train wrecks, so it makes me interested in further pursuing this person who appreciates spending time with me and treats me like a gentleman.

What do I do? Continue to hang out with him as ambiguous buddies, feeling sexually frustrated? Pursue someone on the side in the fashion I’m accustomed to, even though my interest remains solely in my neighbor? Push a confrontation regarding our relationship, even though it might ruin all the fun? Or simply cut him off? Too Much Sugar from My Neighbor


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Dear Too Much Sugar,
Too much sugar? Sounds like too little sugar, sweetheart. What we have here is not courtship. This is "Let’s all sit around and wait while Captain Halfass summons up the pomegranates to cheat on his girlfriend, leave her for good, or tell you he no longer wants you around."
I understand we’re a long way from the days of calling cards and smelling salts and scandalous slivers of exposed wrist. Initials carved on trees have been replaced with hideous MySpace graphics, and it’s hard to discern what constitutes dating and what does not.
Let’s break courtship down to its most basic elements:

  1. Two people, both of whom are available.
  2. A reciprocal interest between the two parties.
  3. An intention to get to know one another in pursuit of an agreed-upon goal.

Now add up your score. By my count, you’re one for three. Yowza.
I appreciate your desire to move toward a healthy balance of sex and love. It’s smart as all get-out. But I think you might be going too far in the opposite direction — mistaking someone’s lack of availability and hesitation as a sign that you’re building something concrete. You’re not. It’s about as stable as a little pig’s house. If he renews his commitment to his sweetums, all those months you spent watching DVDs and building the straw house will come tumbling down.
You need to see other people. Once you experience what’s it’s like to have someone genuinely interested in you, you’ll forget all about this bozo. I realize the last thing you want to do is make plans with someone else when you’re so sprung. Here’s a trick to help you out: Make your seeing him conditional on going on dates with other guys. One date for every three times you hang out. Focus on having fun, not finding a baby father. Don’t hide it from Halfass. He needs to know that you are not putting your life on hold while he dinks around.
One more thought: A gentleman is someone who treats a woman with respect, whether he sleeps with her on the first date or the twelfth. He doesn’t cheat on his girlfriend, whether it’s out-and-out fucking in a hotel room or "cheating light" like your Netflix buddy. You might want to think about upping the caliber of peeps you hang out with rather than putting all the onus on yourself. Yes, you’ve made mistakes in the past, but that doesn’t mean you have to keep punishing yourself by putting up with crap behavior now. You’re a hot property. Own it!

 

Dear Miss Information,

I’m a bisexual girl who badly needs pornography. I need to find out how to get it without having to pay for it or contracting nasty diseases on my computer. Finding pictures and videos of penises entering vaginas is easy, but finding hot girl-on-girl stuff is really hard. My definition of hot girl-on-girl does not include tweaked-out bleached-blonde leather-skinned skinny girls sucking on dildos or looking at the camera while fingering each other with talon-like nails. Call me naive, but is there any porn or soft porn where the girls might legitimately appear attracted to other girls? I’ve tried to talk to male friends who know the ins and outs (so to speak) of porn, but their eyes just sort of glaze over and we end up watching the girl-on-girl I described above. Please help! Really Need Real XXX

Dear Really Need Real XXX,
I’m turned off by bad porn as much as the next person, but can we stop it with all the "real this" and "real that"? Those ladies are real. They’re not big-boobied apparitions or dairy-show exhibits sculpted out of margarine. They’re legitimate females who just don’t happen to appeal to your tastes. Sorry to be such a killjoy over something stupid like semantics, but I think it’s important to make this distinction. Otherwise we’ll have people on the other end of the spectrum telling you that anyone who doesn’t wax their hoo-hoo or get palm trees airbrushed on their toenails is not okay. We’re all real. Every one of us. Even when we’re fake.
On to the fun part. To recap, you’re looking for adult audio-visual that fulfills the following requirements:

  1. The players must not look like mainstream porn stars.
  2. They should appear legitimately interested in the proceedings.
  3. It should be free, as in ‘no charge’ and no spyware.

#1 I can hook you up no problem. Easy. #2 is more difficult. The same things that make a porno flick good — solid lighting and camera angles, multiple retakes, actor direction and positioning — can also make it really tough on the players. It’s no tiptoe through the tulips, as Ron Jeremy says in his autobiography. When a girl’s got three cameras pointed at her labia and two pimply-faced gaffers underfoot and she’s getting clumsily licked by her third chick of the day, you’re not exactly going to get Shakespeare-caliber emotion.
#3 is even harder. There are quite a few free sites out there, but it’s a bit like the Wild West in terms of the lawlessness, potential for bullshit and viruses, and general disorganization. You can be cruising along watching something fabulous only to get cut off at the critical point with some stupid ad for penis pumps or an online casino. A lot of it’s also not curated. Everything from trannies to people dressed up like tigers to stuff that’s not even technically porn, like women getting eyebrow waxes, but feels incredibly unnerving just the same.
One of my favorite sites is BurningAngel.com, which I’ve talked about before. There’s also SuperCult, HotMoviesForHer, and a whole mess of selections over on the official site of the 2008 Feminist Porn Awards. All these sites are paid, but the costs aren’t excessive and you’re supporting a good cause. You can’t bitch about underrepresentation and then be unwilling to put any money behind it. The silicone moguls have legions of fans and huge media corporations on their side. They can afford to give that shit away for free. Until they’re in that position of power, the little guys have us.
If you’re still worried about the meter running every time you fire up the ol’ vagina, try a user-generated site like YouPorn, or go even more grassroots and dig around on the photos and erotic stories sections of The Swingers Board or Craigslist Casual Encounters, all of which are available gratis. The people might not be as pretty and the production values not as sharp, but the "realness" is a sure bet.
Readers, what are your favorite non-mainstream girl-on-girl sites?


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