Advice

Sex Advice From Mathematicians

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Julie, 40

I’m dating an older woman. I’m twenty-two and she’s thirty-one. We have great chemistry, but she’s worried about the age difference and thinks we should break up. But we always end up back in bed together. What should we do?
When a man says to a woman, “We should break up for both our long-term sakes,” this means, “I don’t want to have babies with you.” When a woman says this to a man, it means, “I want to have babies, but not with you.” You are twenty-two and have zero business having kids. You say you have great “chemistry” (hot sex) with this woman, but you don’t say you’re in love with her. Do her a favor, and let her go. Maybe you can be her tennis instructor or cabana boy once she realizes how utterly bored she is in five years.

My boyfriend and I go to different colleges. We’ve been dating for a year, but he still gets insecure when we’re apart. He calls and texts constantly, and is suspicious of any guy friends I make. I love my boyfriend, but his insecurity is driving me away. What should I do?julie
Dump him. Now.  Does he ask you what you wore today and who you talked to? I had one of those. (Hi, Dan!) Do not burn nine fucking years of your hot self on this guy when you could be out there meeting someone else.

I love my girlfriend, but her fashion sense is killing me. She’s old enough to dress like a woman, not a rainbow-drenched scenester. How can I tell her without coming off as a superficial jackass?
Convince her that you have a fetish for evening gowns or business wear and ask her to dress up for you. Make sure you go on and on and on about how hot she looks and how much it turns you on to see her dressed this way. You might still come off as a superficial jackass, but most women are more tolerant of sex-related jackassery than guys telling us how to dress.

She swore she came twice. But we were drunk and she was dry the whole time. I’m coming off a long dry spell, and in spite of what she said, I’m afraid I’ve lost my touch for foreplay, which doesn’t help my confidence now that I’m trying to date again. What should I do now?
Tell her you had fun but you’d like to try it again more sober. If she declines, you will know she was lying about getting off. No woman is going to turn down someone who can make her come twice on the first try — drunk, no less. At the very least, if she says yes, you’ll have a second chance to achieve something better than sloppy, drunken sex. If she says no, try to be sober(ish) with whatever girl you end up with next time.

I’ve been dating this girl for six months, but she just issued an ultimatum: either I give up weed, or she gives up me. She doesn’t smoke, but I never knew it was such a big issue for her. We’re totally compatible in every other way, but now I think that she may not appreciate who I really am. What should I do?
Well, maybe the next girlfriend will love the ganja but not be willing to shave her cooch or her legs because “you’re a pig for even asking.” Yeah, there are chicks like me who have brains and are well-groomed and dirty in bed and smoke dope with abandon. But we’re pretty rare, and when you meet us you’re too fucking intimidated to date us, so figure out what you can deal with in a normal girl. And, before you give up all hope, find out what bothers her about the weed. Maybe it’s the smoking aspect, and she’d let you chow down on pot brownies once in a while?

My boyfriend and I get along great — the only problem is, he doesn’t talk when we eat dinner together! How can I teach him the art of conversation?
I suspect you’re one of those chicks who just yap-yap-yaps all the time, and men deal with this by saying nothing, tuning you out, and waiting for you to get bored of talking to yourself. I’d suggest shutting up and letting him initiate the conversation. He probably won’t do this the first night or the second night, but after five nights of silence, I bet he says something. If he doesn’t do it, then he doesn’t want to talk with you during dinner.

John, 30

I’m dating an older woman. I’m twenty-two and she’s thirty-one. We have great chemistry, but she’s worried about the age difference and thinks we should break up. But we always end up back in bed together. What should we do?
A good rule of thumb is that it’s not creepy as long as the younger partner isn’t less than half the older partner’s age, plus seven years. Right now you’re just on the cusp, but if you give it a few months you’ll be fine. And if she’s in grad school that’s probably enough arrested development on her part to smooth over the difference.

What can mathematics teach us about sex?
There’s a huge gap between theory and practice.

What’s the best tool of your trade to bring into the bedroom?
A chalkboard. It’s all well and good to have an idea for a new position, but it’s so much easier to explain if you can sketch a diagram.drmathochist_icon

I had a bad breakup a year ago, and can’t quite seem to get back into dating. I have a ton of girls who are friends, and some of them might want more — but I find excuses to never take it to the next level. How can I stop self-sabotaging and get over my fears?
Peer review can help refine your raw ideas. Run things by a friend and see what he thinks. Whatever he says to try, go for it. You have nothing to lose but your grant funding.

I’ve been dating this girl for six months, but she just issued an ultimatum: either I give up weed, or she gives up me. She doesn’t smoke, but I never knew it was such a big issue for her. We’re totally compatible in every other way, but now I think that she may not appreciate who I really am. What should I do?
Ultimatums are never good ideas. You can’t just assert something without giving a documented chain of reasoning leading up to your conclusion if you ever want to convince anyone that you’re correct. And you’re both doing it right now. On her end, why is the weed such a problem for her? And for your part, are you serious that the weed is “who you really are”? Why is it so important that you would be irrevocably changed if you were to quit smoking up? Maybe there’s a compromise to be reached, but if you can’t quit with the pot and she can’t be with someone who smokes pot, then we’ve got a contradiction that undercuts the assumption that you’re compatible to begin with.

My boyfriend and I get along great — the only problem is, he doesn’t talk when we eat dinner together! How can I teach him the art of conversation?
I’ve been standing in front of classrooms for years and I still don’t know how to get someone to talk voluntarily. If he can hold up a conversation away from the dinner table, I’d suggest working around it. You can use mealtime to talk about your day, since he’s obviously listening to you then. After dinner it’s his turn.

Ben, 33

What can mathematics teach us about sex?
According to my calculations… multiply by five… carry the one… subtract seventeen… yes, mathematics has taught me next to nothing about sex and the art of enticing women. If there’s one thing that mathematics has taught me that’s relevant to relationships and sex, it’s to make no unnecessary assumptions. Each nuance I learn with regard to sex, romance, and women, I tally in my mental notepad. I’m not easily shocked or surprised. Consequently, my margin notes rarely say, “Holy shit, what a freak!” and even then, sometimes they get a smiley-face sticker and a yellow memo asking them to see the teacher after class.

In order for a relationship to work, should you approach it as if it were calculable and determinable, or treat it as if were a variable, where anything goes?
People and relationships are complex beyond what mathematics can reasonably handle, in my humble opinion. Thus, the gentleman abstains from implementing any form of logic to predict people, more specifically women, and the course of any relationship. Y’all ladies are an encrypted mystery that even mathematics fails to decipher.ben

What’s the best way to pick up a mathematician?
It depends on the mathematician. As you would expect, mathematicians vary across the full spectrum of personalities. The stereotypical mathematician is shy, so I wouldn’t come on too strong. Buy him or her a drink (or a nice pen and pad of paper). Repeat until they’ve thawed enough and then simply listen. People like to talk, even if at first they resist, mathematician or not. You could go another direction with the shy and just start off with a little playful dirty talk. Keep it classy but make it sexy and be sure to exude confidence. Sex talk cleverly done via analogy always gets me, especially if she can keep up the wit with a straight face.

I love my girlfriend, but her fashion sense is killing me. She’s old enough to dress like a woman, not a rainbow-drenched scenester. How can I tell her without coming off as a superficial jackass?
Step one: check your available credit. Step two: if your available credit is sufficiently below your limit, tell her that you want to treat her to a day of shopping. Before shopping, educate yourself on fashion. Pick out items for her that you rate as worthy of such a sultry siren. Be sure to select pieces that fit her body type! Don’t dog her selections, play up yours. Step three: if she selects items you like, buy them. Otherwise, suggest a different store. Step four: repeats steps two and three until you break her bad fashion habits. Step five: be thankful she isn’t wearing Uggs with low-riding pink hot pants, a green half-shirt tank top, a black bra encrusted with rhinestones, and a flesh-tone t-back pulled two inches above the waist line of the hot pants. Note: If your balance is near the max, either get a new job, be a superficial jackass, or live with it. Make the call dude. At the end of the day, regardless of what she wears, where do her clothes end up? Yeah, that’s right.

She swore she came twice. But we were drunk and she was dry the whole time. I’m coming off a long dry spell, and in spite of what she said, I’m afraid I’ve lost my touch for foreplay, which doesn’t help my confidence now that I’m trying to date again. What should I do now?
Call me naive, but when she says she came, I trust her unless I have a reason not to. By the way, not the best topic to harp on as you’re essentially calling her a liar in the bedroom. There is a high variance “down there.” Unless she’s pulling out a diagram indicating the various pleasure regions and how to work them, trust yourself. No woman wants a lover who constantly asks, “Was I good? Oh damn, I wasn’t good, was I? Shit, I’ll do better next time!” Give it time, listen to her body and pay attention to how she reacts. She will tell you what works if you listen.

My boyfriend and I get along great — the only problem is, he doesn’t talk when we eat dinner together! How can I teach him the art of conversation?
If he’s anything like my father, you might have to live with this. When my father eats, it’s like a hyena gorging on a zebra. I kid you not, if you touch him, it’s Custer’s last stand. He surrounds his food with his arms and glares at you with the snarled expression of a cornered badger. Was your boyfriend ever in prison? I had a friend his name was Bear who, when he got out of state, ate every meal in two minutes. I would suggest ordering a drink before dinner. A nice cab or a refreshing mojito to initiate the conversation before the feeding begins. If the conversation is off and running prior to the food, it should require less effort to maintain while you eat. Pick a topic that particularly peaks his interest. Sexual fantasies you each have would be a nice topic and could ensure that you have your dessert at home.

What’s an automatic dealbreaker when dating?
A lack of intelligence. I once dated an extremely attractive woman who didn’t even know the current president; she seriously had not even the vaguest clue. She lasted a month; did I mention she was really hot? My mother will never let me forget how superficial I was, as I made a rookie mistake and introduced her to my family; for the record, my father was a big fan. Another deal breaker is a bad kisser. Nothing kills the moment like an amateur assault on my mouth, tongue, and face. As a young man, I courted a lady for some time and when we first kissed, I really did think she was trying to eat me. Thankfully, there was only a small amount of blood.