Hello all, I need some advice on my relationship. I am a 22-year-old woman and I am still a virgin. I have always wanted the first time I have sex to be with someone that I am in a long-term relationship with. The problem is that many of the guys I have gone on a few dates with back out as soon as they find out that information.

Two months ago, I started dating a man who said that it didn’t bother him but the past few weeks it has felt like he is pressuring me to have sex. He asks me how long we must be dating before I will consider it, gets sullen when I tell him that I am still not ready, and says that if I were a sex positive feminist, I wouldn’t even be a virgin still. This conversation is getting to the point where it is happening daily. I am starting to get very uncomfortable. We are great in every other aspect, and I even want to introduce him to my parents soon. Why do I get the feeling that I should break up with him?

Not Ready

More inside

Ok. Here is the simple answer. Dump him, run, don’t look back.

That’s the thing about gut feelings. They are there to protect you. You are in a bad situation, and while he may be a nice guy in other aspects, what he is doing is manipulative and wrong. In every sexual situation, in all forms of touch, consent needs to be freely given. If he is trying to coerce or manipulate you into having sex with him, he is not looking for consensual anything. He wants you to do things with your body on his terms. It’s just wrong. This has nothing to do with your virginity, this has everything to do with the fact that he is using emotional tactics in order to prey on you.

Being sex positive doesn’t mean that you are a cheerleader and proponent of everyone having sex all the time. It means that you believe that people are empowered to make those choices for themselves. Someone is not a slut because they choose to have a lot of sex or a lot of partners. Nobody is a prude or boring because they choose not to have sex, to only have one partner, or to not be kinky. Sex positivity is about everyone being able to make their own sexual choices. You have made yours and he should have respected that.

Don’t give him another chance, he has already shown you who he is. Get out of this toxic relationship and find someone that respects your bodily autonomy.

Hi Ask an Alaskan,

Help! I am feeling left out on my own. A year and a half ago I started to date a new guy. We are both polyamory oriented. He had three partners already when we got together. I am the fourth person that he is dating and at first things were fine. I met his other partners, (two women and one man), and we got along famously. There have even been situations where groups of us have played sexually together. They all live together in a large house and I visit often.

Recently he started dating two more people, they are a couple and one of them is a partner that he had been with long term previously. That will bring his total to six people that he is dating. I am really trying to be open to all of this, but it seems like a lot of people for one person. Now I am feeling left out in the cold as the only one of his partners that lives independently.

I feel like this guy has a problem with commitment. He doesn’t seem like he can fully commit to any amount. How many partners is too many for one person? Am I allowed to ask a person that I am dating to adhere to a limit for my comfort?

One in a Million

Hey there One. This guy must have an amazing plan to keep these commitments together and make sure that he has time and energy for so many partners! That is a lot! These are the exact reasons that so many people in the Poly community love and hate their calendars so much. With so many people to divide your attention amongst, you need to write it all down and keep it organized.

You didn’t mention whether you were dating anyone else as well, but we suppose that doesn’t really matter. The issue is that you are dating this one guy, and your worry is about whether he will continue to have the time and energy for you that has been present up until this point. That’s tough. We aren’t saying that it can’t happen, we just haven’t seen a lot of situations where it does. With six partners it is entirely conceivable that he could give one day a week exclusively to each and then take a day to rest, but with you being the only partner that does not share a home with him or one of the metamours, ( a metamour is a partner of your partner that you do not have a romantic relationship with), it is completely valid that you would be feeling left out in a lot of ways.

There is something about your letter that makes us think of monogamous relationships where a partner takes part in activities that are popularly called “Back Burner” or “Parachuting”.

A Back Burner is a friendship that someone in a monogamous relationship will have. They know that this friend is interested in them sexually and romantically, and if they ever wanted to, they could turn up the heat.

A Parachute is a romantic relationship that will be started when one partner in a monogamous partnership knows that they want to end their current commitment so that when they jump, they have a nice soft cushy way to land.

Is this normal behavior for him in his Poly lifestyle? Have you talked to the new partner that happens to be an old partner?

We think that you are correct to be concerned, and of course that means having conversations. Lot’s of conversations, with everyone involved. This guy may be the most amazing person at polyamory ever, but for some reason we are getting the vibe that he wants a harem, or like you said, using his poly lifestyle to not commit to anyone. The basis of polyamory is first and foremost commitment and communication, and it’s time for both.

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