When is it right to have sex with a guy?—Emma
The implication that there is a wrong time to have sex with a guy—aside from the first day of your period, or when Revenge is on, or when you don’t want to—is totally reasonable. But, it’s also totally boring and sexist, because the “right time” refers to the idea of not wanting to feel like the wrong kind of slut. Actress and internet-superfamous Imboycrazy.com blogger Alexi Wasser (she was on Girls, remember?) says “I’ve never been the type of girl who thought there was a specific time or rule…it’s been because I wanted to and it’s never really affected me badly.” And that’s the thing. You know that very good shopping adage, “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it?” Asking when to visit Sexington Emporium, instead of knowing that the only right time is “when I feel like it,” suggests you can’t handle it.
Before anything else, decide what you want from him, and what you are and are not willing to risk doing and feeling. Like, assume he won’t call you the next day: Are you cool with how that’s going to play out in your heart-brains?
Have you had any sweet—instead of filthy—daydreams about him? If so, you’ve imagined a relationship, and should probably wait until you’re somewhat established and maybe even exclusive with him before you do it. (Some double-standard sexisms are substantively real, so just shut up.) The upside is that this “not yet” principle can and should be employed post first date and into a new relationship. Wasser asks “Do you want to fall in love and extend the magic and the honeymoon period and the mystery for as long as possible?” If so (and it’s so much more long-game fun, you guys), wait.
Also, Wasser wants to know if you “feel the need to sexualize every situation you’re in with every guy.” Could it be that you “think you’re just a sexually liberated/evolved woman but really it’s an unconscious need to feed your ego and get validation the only way you know how?” If so, you have some other questions to answer first.
“If you 100 per cent know you do not want to pursue a relationship with a guy,” says Wasser, “it’s totally okay to sex him on the first date or whenever you want!” I super-agree with her. And we don’t use “100 per cent” lightly: Make sure that his personality grosses you out to the same degree that his body or whatever makes you want to do it like in that YouPorn clip you can’t un-bookmark.
None of this is to say you shouldn’t make out, or even “make out-plus,” with a guy you’re not sleeping with right away. Wasser agrees: “Definitely do a pants graze and find out what you’re dealing with down there!” See? Now you’ve decided.
I am coming off of a divorce and ensuing financial troubles, and my friends don’t believe me when I say I’m “fine.” Why does it seem like I should be having a worse time than I am? Day to day, it’s all good.—John
I don’t know about you, but my friends and I definitely characterize time as “eras,” each one being distinctly this way or that way, only “good” or “bad.” Obviously, this is never how life actually is. But it’s helpful, individually and as each other’s friends, to conceive of something hard as being of a parcel of time that will necessarily end. It’s just a way of mediating how stupid-difficult everything already is. So, don’t worry about it; this just means you are smarter and more complex than us. Anyway, I’d really like to instigate some kind of micro-revolution in which nobody asks anybody else how they are—because no one cares, and everyone lies—and instead a casual greeting would be a short, humorous anecdote, as in “Hi! Yesterday, I saw a dog wearing a Jays hat.” Deal? Deal.
Have a question for Kate? Email email@example.com.