The Bottom Whisperer: Stronger
Happy 4th of July! Hope you are all celebrating your (sexual) independence and it brings fireworks! Follow me on twitter and facebook if you don’t already! Missed last week’s column? Don’t fret, you can read it here!
Now let’s get to this week’s questions!
Dear Bottom Whisperer,
Big fan of the column which prompted me to reach out with an issue I have been dealing with for quite a while. I am a gay man in my 30s. When I was growing up I was the victim of physical and emotional abuse from my stepfather which I feel has continued to plague me in my interpersonal relationships. I have a very difficult time giving up control in situations and the idea of submission in a sexual dynamic is horrifying. When I was younger I was involved with women romantically and never had this problem. I had a girlfriend blindfold me, tie me up without any problems. I find it to be such a problem that even in my long-term relationships now I am unable to give up power in the bedroom. This means I always top, when I do bottom, I feel a great deal of stress and can’t simply ‘let go’ and enjoy the ride. It has caused friction in previous relationships and I wanted to see if you had any advice on ways that I can work on it.
Lengthy Emotions Tormenting Getting Off
Thanks for being so brave as to take a long hard look at how something like this might be affecting all areas of your life. It makes total sense that as a person who was the victim of physical and emotional abuse, you might have a tough time allowing yourself to give up power to another individual. When we a growing up, adults are our authority figures and with that comes trust and a responsibility to keep our best interests in mind. When that trust is violated and we are victimized, we develop defense mechanisms to help us deal with the betrayal and ensure that we are not put in the same situation ever again.
I would advise you to be open with people you see romantically so that they can understand where you are coming from. It sounds to me like you aren’t happy with where things are sexually and that you are interested in pushing these boundaries in a healthy and respectful manner. In order for you to do so you will need to be open and honest with your partner so they can keep open lines of communication and be willing to talk through and try to understand if you have a negative reaction to a particular sexual/emotional experience. I’d spend some time looking and thinking about how you want to move forward with addressing these issues. Make sure you trust and care for the person who you choose to push these boundaries with. This is an area where you have a lot of emotional vulnerability.
Lastly, dealing with these issues on your own is difficult and sometimes an outside perspective can be very helpful. Even as a self-aware person, you can overlook some reactions and behaviors that have become commonplace over the years. You might consider seeing someone who specialized in GLBT issues. This could be a really positive experience for you. Best of luck and happy humping!
Dear Bottom Whisperer,
I’m a twenty-something heterosexual female who has been on the receiving end of some flak from my friends recently due to my lack of condom use. I am on birth control and always have ‘the talk’ with my sex partners. Real talk, I dislike condoms. In my previous LTR my boyfriend, who just happened to be uncircumcised, and I had a big problem with the condom slipping off all of the time so that led to me using birth control. I know my ex also was not able to achieve orgasm while using condoms which was extremely frustrating for both of us. So I would love some advice from you for safer sex alternatives to condom use. Thanks!
Friendly Lust And Knowledge
When it comes to safer sex alternatives for folks who don’t want to use rubbers, the options are limited and frankly, all exclude penetration. BJs, HJs, dry humping, masturbation, but no penetration. You are lucky to have good friends who are willing to try and talk some sense into you about your distaste for condom use. I get criticized quite a bit when I discuss the huge spectrum of STIs that are out there so I will spare you the lecture. There are infectious diseases that will stay with you the rest of your life (longer than a child) and be an uncomfortable date conversation with potential sexual partners.
As for your issue with condom slippage, not to say it never happens, and I understand how it can be affected by an uncircumcised penis, but I would encourage you not to simply write condoms off. The variety of sizes and materials out there with condoms is pretty incredible. You could possibly avoid this issue with the addition of a small amount of lube underneath the condom before it goes on. This might also reduce the desensitizing friction that made it tough for your ex to achieve orgasm from protected sex. I’ll be honest, I am really not a big fan of the “Poor me, I can’t get off with a condom” dialogue. I think guys use it as an excuse to have sex without condoms and taps into a very vulnerable part of people who might not have enough self-confidence or education to set healthy boundaries when it comes to protecting themselves sexually.
In closing, sexual relations are a lot of responsibility and I encourage you to make good decisions that protect you and the people who choose to sleep with you. Family planning/birth control/safer sex practices are just a part of the game in this day and age. Find a recipe that works best with your lifestyle while also offering a reasonable amount of protection from infectious diseases. Happy humping!