For the anon with the uncertain boyfriend: you should also talk to your bf about what he considers signs of you wanting sex - what kind of body language he associates with wanting sex. It could be that you're sending 'yes' signals and he's not recognising them. I've had partners who have interpreted cuddling on a couch as 'up for sex' and partners who have interpreted me taking my clothes off in front of them as 'probably not up for sex'.
Good advice! And, frankly, nothing that can’t be cleared up by some communication.
I have kind of a random question but I don't know who else to ask. So my boyfriend said that he feels like he's using me for sex when he tries to initiate it. I have no idea how to convince him that I don't feel that way, and I want to do it with him. What should I say?
OH MAN. This is a rough position to be in, anon!
I think I understand why your boyfriend feels the way that he does, because I imagine some of this insecurity comes from the fact that, at least in America, we’re all raised to believe that girls don’t want sex and that boys, in negotiating for sex, are negotiating something away from the girls. Men pursue enthusiastically, women “give in” reluctantly.
We as humans know that this is hardly the case. Some men hardly ever want to have sex, or never do, and that’s OK. Some women want to have sex ALL THE DANG TIME, and that is also OK. Vice versa, too! And of course we as humans know that gender is much more fluid than what society would have us believe.
But when we’re with a sexual partner, it can be very hard to divorce these things we’ve been told all of our lives from that partner and sex itself. America in particular has a very conservative attitude towards sex — we’re total prudes while simultaneously sexualizing everything in sight. It’s confusing as heck, man. And in a world where we don’t get great sex ed, it has a huge impact!
All this to say that you should talk to your boyfriend about why he feels this way. Sit down with him and just listen. He may not quite be able to articulate it, and that’s okay, but ask him to try. It’s entirely possible that he’s so used to the idea that women being loud in their appreciation of sex (porn, man) means that however you express yourself sexually doesn’t register for him as arousal. It could be that it has nothing to do with you, but insecurity about sex and sexuality in general. But you won’t know unless you ask!
So talk it out. Listen, and tell him how you feel with vulnerability and from the heart. If it’s a larger issue than him just needing to be convinced, or needing to see different kinds of sexual appreciation, couples counseling is a total valid and valuable way to work through issues like this with someone you really care about (if it’s available to you).
It’s fine for men to watch shojo anime and read shojo manga like Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura.
It’s fine for men to make pornographic doujinshi of these, buy figurines, and jack off to the characters.
It’s fine for men to completely invade a Pretty Cure forum created for young girls and scare said girls away. It’s fine for these men to twist the entire fandom around themselves, its fine for them to show up to Pretty Cure events in throngs and its fine for them to frantically grab all the free handouts before any of the girls can.
It’s also fine for men to take these magical girl anime made for girls that celebrate being a girl and make them all about their pornography and which girl they most want to put their dick in. It’s fine, because theres even a cute name for them, ‘Ooki Tomodachi’ (Big Friend).
It’s fine for them to do the same with My Little Pony, of course. It’s fine that they can make the voice actors of the show uncomfortable with personal questions, its fine that they can yell out rape jokes to them at conventions, its fine that they have basically made it impossible for any of the 8 year old girls the show was made for to ever google it in public. It’s fine for them to gather in the toy stores around the pony toys and intimidate young girls. It’s fine that the whole show, created to celebrate femininity and how ‘theres no wrong way to be a girl’ is now associated with their fetishes. And its so fine that these male fans get given a cute name (‘brony’), get documentaries made about them, have newspaper article after blog post after feature talking about how they are ‘challenging gender norms’ and ‘transforming pop culture’.
But if a girl ‘trespasses’ into a male space, what happens? (Even when it isnt ‘trespassing’, in the case of Free!, in which a space was actually made for us ) We can expect such timeless classics as: degradation, ‘you’re not even a REAL fan!’ ‘I bet you dont even know ______’, all kinds of threats, and, of course, the posts you see on this blog.
This! This nails what makes me so uncomfortable about brony stuff. I don’t care if guys like “girl” things. What bothers me is how they move into a female space and take it over and make it all about their dicks, then act offended when women get uncomfortable with it. They cannot imagine a space that they can’t co-opt and make their own.
BUT they also can’t imagine women having their own space OR invading a “male” space like comic books or science fiction. Jesus fucking christ, dudes, could we women get a little fucking space?
And she definitely isn’t as disgusting as she thinks she is. She isn’t disgusting at all.
This question — Eleanor isn’t really fat, is she? — comes up fairly regularly for me. And sometimes (not always!), I feel like people expect me to reassure them:
“Don’t worry. Eleanor isn’t really fat. You weren’t imagining a fat person making out in the back of a car; that would be gross. She’s actually just curvy. Like Marilyn Monroe. Or Jennifer Love Hewitt.”
I don’t say in the book (Eleanor & Park) with any narrative authority exactly how fat Eleanor is, though many of the characters say what they think …
Eleanor sees herself as huge and repulsive. The kids in the neighborhood call her “Big Red,” which makes Park’s dad expect her to be bigger. Park is embarrassed by Eleanor for all sorts of reasons, and gives us the clearest physical description of her body:
Why hadn’t he expected her to be so beautiful? To have so much negative space? He closed his eyes and saw her again. A stack of freckled heart-shapes, a perfectly made Dairy Queen ice cream cone. Like Betty Boop drawn with a heavy hand.
But none of that answers the how fat question.
And that’s because I don’t think it’s important. I know how I picture Eleanor — but I don’t care how you picture Eleanor. And I think drawing a line between “sort of fat, but only by 21st-Century American standards” and “really, really fat” is depressing.
I mean, who I am to draw that line? Who are you? And where do we start?
Park thinks Eleanor is beautiful. He loves her for who she is on the inside, and he loves her for who she is on the outside. He wants to kiss her. He wants to have sex with her. And it isn’t because he’s brave and deep — it’s because he’s attracted to her.
it’s hard 2 be sad about ur body when you think of it as a landscape. you don’t criticise a mountain for being too big, or a valley for being too winding, and no one ever complains about the vastness of the sea. u are part of the earth and u are so beautiful friends.
shout out to all my followers struggling with their eating during the holidays, to everybody with unsupportive families, to everybody feeling weak, to everybody wanting to lock themselves in their room all night, to everybody anxious and panicked and feeling guilty while the people around them are enjoying themselves; you’re all so important to me and I hope this holiday season you can remember that you’re human and deserving of love no matter what
Sure. I’m assuming you mean “advice for keeping them from crashing and burning,” and not “advice on how to have a good sex life.” I’m not going to tell you that FWB never works — I think that myth was borne of slut-shaming and the sexist idea that women always want relationships and can’t have sex without catching feelings. I will tell you that friendships are rarely simple, whether sex is involved or not, and you should always honor your feelings!
Here are some actual, actionable tips.
Be as open as possible with each other about what you want from the situation, especially if those wants change. You guys just want someone to sleep with? Baller, have at it. One of you starts to want a relationship, with the other or outside of the situation? Cool, talk about it. Practice having vulnerable, honest conversations about it. It’s hard, but worthwhile, and will make it easier for you in other relationships, too.
Get tested regularly, especially if either of you has other sexual partners.
Know that sex often complicates things; not always, but often. As much as it would be nice for sex to be a nonchalant thing that doesn’t affect anybody’s feelings, it can, especially if you are close friends. (This is true for people of all gender expressions.)
Other than that, it’s up to you. Have fun, be safe, practice good consent, use a safeword.
You wrote in the blog about the Dove forensic sketch ad that it triggered "severe body dysmorphia." Do you really suffer from body dysmorphia, a real and horrible psychological disorder? If not, I hope you realize what a bold claim that was to make and how you not feeling good about yourself for a few days is nothing akin to what someone who really has body dysmorphia actually goes through.
gettin’ real sick of underwear and responsibilities
SORRY TO CO-OPT THIS POST but here’s some real talk: if you have a vagina, it is 100% healthy to go commando whenever the hell you want. A lot of OB-GYNs recommend it. If you produce a lot of vaginal fluid, it may actually help to go commando — your body might be overcompensating for what your underwear is soaking up. Get some air up in there!
If not, wear 100% cotton underwear and NEVER (or at least rarely) THONGS. Thongs are like a bacteria zipline from your asshole to your vagina.
Other vaginal health things: never douche! Douching can totally screw up the pH in your vagina. Also, never wash your vagina (the inside part) with soap. Go gently along your vulva (this is the outer part, your labia majora) with very gentle soap, like Dove, or a natural body wash. Splash some clear water up in there occasionally, but you never need to put anything else inside your vagina (except, like, whatever you use to get yourself off, if you choose to. But soap or whatever never needs to go in your vajay).
Vaginal smell is also totally normal. It’s a vagina, not a fucking rose. If you start seeing abnormal discharge (really thick, yellow or white) or a very strong, abnormal odor, see a doctor, but otherwise vaginal odor and discharge is TOTALLY NORMAL. I’m gonna say it a second time: IT’S NORMAL FOR YOUR VAGINA TO SMELL LIKE A VAGINA AND SOMETIMES EXCRETE FLUID. Normal fluid can be totally clear, or a somewhat opaque white, or a brownish color depending on where you are in your menstrual cycle.
Also whatever your vulva looks like is a totally normal way for a vulva to look like. I swear.
If you’re worried, talk to a doctor! But like 9 times out of 10 you are totally fine, and they should tell you that more often in school.
Here’s an inexplicably hairless diagram of a vagina (I was 19 before I saw one of these):
This has been your vagina informational post for the day.
---- We are taught to believe that the longer we have been habituated to something, the more difficult it is to change it.. now that is true if you believe it, and if you don't, it isn't! .. As long as you label yourself and make a point of being a "big fat feminist" over the simple fact that you are Human, and Alive. You will always have this negative filter/outlook on life. Change it now, not soon, not next week, Now!. Tomorrow never comes.
Hi I just read your article on the Dove advert, I'd only just seen it today. It seems that you are doing what many do and trying to look for negative things. I personally saw no indication or got any idea from that advert that fat is bad, thin is good. You see, it is you personally that are picking up on these things. We live in a culture where it's almost the norm to be so self-critical that it can only lead to such situations. I heard a quote earlier -
I see that you are not quite done talking. I’m gonna go ahead and suggest you stop writing whatever else you’re writing in my ask box, because no.
So basically through your reverse racism post, you mean to tell me that if a group of African Americans jump me because I'm white, it's not racist? I'm sorry, sweetheart, but that's bullshit if you ask me
Nah, it’s not racism. It might be prejudice, sure, but as a white person you can walk away from that situation into a different one where you’re not experiencing that prejudice. Black people can’t do that; wherever they go, they will experience institutionalized racism. The oppressed can’t hurt the privileged the same way the privileged can hurt the oppressed.
And, hey, please don’t call me sweetheart. I get that being confronted with this for the first time can make people defensive, but it’s not cool to try to make me feel small because I said something you don’t agree with.
“Life is going to present to you a series of transformations. And the point of education should be to transform you. To teach you how to be transformed so you can ride the waves as they come. But today, the point of education is not education. It’s accreditation. The more accreditation you have, the more money you make. That’s the instrumental logic of neoliberalism. And this instrumental logic comes wrapped in an envelope of fear. And my Ivy League, my MIT students are the same. All I feel coming off of my students is fear. That if you slip up in school, if you get one bad grade, if you make one fucking mistake, the great train of wealth will leave you behind. And that’s the logic of accreditation. If you’re at Yale, you’re in the smartest 1% in the world. […] And the brightest students in the world are learning in fear. I feel it rolling off of you in waves. But you can’t learn when you’re afraid. You cannot be transformed when you are afraid.”—
Back in May I posted an essay list with some of my essays specifically on womanism, Black feminism and race in feminist discourse, though just about anything I write is shaped by a womanist lens and an intersectional world view/experiences. I’ve since written more essays within this theme, so here’s an updated essay list.
educating others on racism and safety as a Black woman [X] [X]
Of course like any other womanist/Black feminist, my thoughts on feminism and all anti-oppression theory, politics and praxis change (and hopefully evolve) over time, so as I progress I will certainly expand on certain ideas and some have evolved even since I’ve written some of these posts, as some are older than others.
As far as basic questions that examine the similarities and differences between womanism and feminism, see the first several posts in this essay list and also these quotes and my notes: [X] [X] [X] [X] [X] [X] [X].
I saw your post about the n word, and I have something to add, not meaning to be offensive in any way. Saying that there are "bad" or "good" black people is not completely racist, except in the way that it was phrased. There are "good" and "bad" white people as well, but it's better to phrase it as just "bad people" rather than singling them out for race.
You realize that white people moralizing black people is inherently pretty fucked up, right?
“Fucked-up people will try to tell you otherwise, but boundaries have nothing to do with whether you love someone or not. They are not judgments, punishments, or betrayals. They are a purely peaceable thing: the basic principles you identify for yourself that define the behaviors that you will tolerate from others, as well as the responses you will have to those behaviors. Boundaries teach people how to treat you, and they teach you how to respect yourself.”—Cheryl Strayed
Allow me to once again usurp a post in order to cry about it, please accept my gross apologies in advance, but here’s the thing: I have been waiting for this day for so long. In fact, I’ve been waiting for this day since 2001 when Destiny’s Child premiered ‘Bootylicious’ with that slick Stevie Nicks sample and MJ-style ad libbed harmonies. These two songs have nothing to do with each other. They’re both from vocal powerhouse girl groups, and they both eschew men in favor of the self, which is part of the cool chick code, but it’s not that. It really isn’t. It’s hearing a song that’s titled “Boy” not being about a boy at all. It’s the a capella opening and the four part harmony that sends shivers up and down my spine. It’s hearing this track and confirming my earlier suspicions that this album, like so few others, is not a sophomore ‘attempt’. It’s calling out and chomping down and demanding everyone, boys included, listen. Do you remember when Destiny’s Child reunited for the Super Bowl halftime show and took that glorious 10 seconds of nonsensical ad libbing in ‘Bootylicious’ to an a capella place and their voices were so strong it felt like they were reaching right inside of you and punching your organs around POWPOWPOWPOW? This song feels like that. It’s a return to slick beats that only work because the voices on top of those beats are so tightly controlled. I keep listening to it and thinking about being a young girl and buying my first Destiny’s Child album, hearing those interesting beats, those rhythmic hooks, and bouncing around my living room daring the world to stop me. I hope girls buy this album and jam out with their friends. I hope, like Destiny’s Child did for me, that this album introduces girls to other girls, to other girl groups, to rock and pop and hip-hop ladies that make them experience that same fierce pride in being alive and young and ruthlessly passionate. It’s a new generation, like Little Mix is picking up where the ladies before them left off — like Destiny’s Child did in sampling ‘Edge of Seventeen’ or improving on and reimagining sounds from a legendary male artist like MJ — and that feels like something important.
Yoooooooo gurl how'd you get yo hair like dat? (Just kidding, you're amazing and wonderful and I love you, but seriously your hair rocks. How do you do it?)
OKAY HERE’S HOW I GOT MY HAIR LIKE DAT
Please note I was SUPER anxious at first, so I was ultra-cautious.
3% hydrogen peroxide baking soda conditioner and shampoo of your choosing a bowl plastic gloves hair dye of your choice (mine is Manic Panic Hot Hot Pink)
Optional: a hair dryer, some coconut oil
Important notes: My hair is unprocessed, very thick, and pretty porous. I almost never blow it dry, straighten, or heat it in any way; I used to dye it in high school, but I’ve never bleached it before; therefore, it’s very healthy. It’s also very, very dark. YMMV with different hair types, colors, etc.
Part one: bleach dat hair!
Start with dry, clean hair. Don’t blow dry that day! Let your hair air dry. This will minimize damage from the bleaching.
Separate out the parts of your hair that you want to bleach. If you want to bleach your whole head, proceed to step 3.
Put your damn gloves on.
Mix some hydrogen peroxide with baking soda in a bowl until you get a thick paste. The paste should be thick enough that it clings to your hair without dripping, but not so thick that you can’t saturate your hair with it.
Add conditioner. Mix it up.
Add shampoo. Mix it up. (I did not use shampoo, but it does make it easier to rinse out.)
Apply this super gross, vaguely pornographic mixture to the parts of your hair you want to lighten.
If you want to help things along, blow dry those parts for 10 minutes or so. Or, if you’re like me, get super bored after 5 and wander off and do something else.
Leave on your hair for an hour.
After an hour, rinse it all out.
Repeat as needed. Note: this process is pretty damaging to your hair. If, like me, you have really dark hair, be mindful that lightening it up all the way to blonde all at once is going to do serious damage and take FOREVER.
You can also just leave it on for six hours or whatever, but because I faded my hair, I needed to rinse it out and reapply.
To get the fade effect: (Mind you, I needed six rounds. You may need less.) Apply the first and second round of peroxide to all the parts of your hair that you want to show color. Apply the third and fourth to the part you want to be brighter. Apply the fifth and sixth to the part you want to be brightest.
Part two: dye dat hair!
Follow the instructions on the dye you purchase. It ain’t rocket science.
For darker hair, it’s OK to wait 45 minutes or an hour instead of 30 like the package often recommends. I waited 45, and then heated with the blow dryer for 10.
Part three: maintain dat hair!
This is where the coconut oil comes in handy! The day after I dyed, I did a coconut oil treatment on my hair — basically I slathered a bunch in there, left it for about two hours while I did other stuff, then rinsed it out. It’ll help a lot with the damage done by bleaching. For longer hair, tuck underneath a plastic cap. For THE TRUE PAMPERING EXPERIENCE, blow dry your coconut oiled hair for a while. You can repeat them a few times a week if you need to; they make your hair smell really nice and be really silky.
You can also, like I did, put a little bit of hair dye into the shampoo you use regularly and shake well to mix. This way your hair will get re-tinted every time you shower. Because my whole head isn’t pink, I put some shampoo into a second bottle so I can shampoo the front separately. Genius!
Are you excited about the new Ms. Marvel? Telling Tumblr is great. Telling your retailer is even better. You know what else you can do? TELL MARVEL by writing to them directly — even just to say you like the direction they’re going.
(Here’s the thing: folks who are not happy about this will are far more likely to pick up a pen, so… get to it.)
As an aside—and this is addressed to anyone and not just with regard to my books—if there’s a book you’re particularly enjoying, yes, it is kind and generous of you to let the creators know. It’s ALSO kind and generous of you to let the PUBLISHER and (if you shop this way) your local comic shop know. Mail/tweets from readers always make an impression.
I’ve filled this list in the best I can without spending a ton of time on it. If anybody wants to do more research, I’ll repost.
Contact Marvel Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @marvel Snail Mail: Marvel Entertainment, LLC 135 W. 50th Street, 7th Floor New York, NY 10020
Contact DC Twitter: @DCComics
Contact Boom! Twitter: @boomstudios
Contact IDW Twitter: @IDWPublishing
Contact Image Twitter: @ImageComics
Contact Oni Press Twitter: @OniPress Snail Mail: Oni Press 1305 SE Martin Luther King Blvd., Ste. A Portland, OR 97214
Contact Dark Horse Twitter: @DarkHorseComics Snail Mail: Dark Horse Comics 10956 SE Main Street Milwaukie, OR 97222
(Feel free to add other publishers, too. )
…And if you’re open to your letter being used in a letter column, mark it OKAY TO PRINT.
Hey guys? Please take a moment to tweet, email, write, fax, whatever you can do and thank Marvel for their continuing efforts to diversify their stable of heroes. The interns and staffers who handle their mail and PR are going to be swamped by, shall we say, the less pleasant parts of fandom and humanity in general, and I’d really like to counterbalance that a bit.
We’re all so quick to say when things are wrong, myself included. Let’s take a moment to remember that everyone likes to hear when they’re trying to do the right thing. That every voice saying, “Give me a comic, give me a shirt, give me a movie, give me a CHANCE,” is important, if we want to drown out the ones saying, “They’re buying the straight, white, male characters you have now, so why should you bother?”
Everyone needs a hero. And we have a chance here. That three women will carry, or have carried the Marvel name. Three very different women. Monica, Carol, and Kamala. Imagine the movie that could be.
Really? Just because Black women have an outlet to celebrate how awesome we are, and ya’ll get irked and say that this is unfair to White women and you want on on it. First off..hell no. White women get validation everywhere in media and are told constantly how wonderful you all are. Black women? Not so much. When Black women are openly enjoying our achievements, here you guys come complaining that this is racist and you want to be included. No. No, no, no. It’s just like Paul Mooney said, “everyone wants to be a nigga, but no one wants to be a nigga.”
So everyone that thinks the #whitegirlsrock tag is valid? You all can go rot as far as I’m concerned. Black Girls Rock. Deal with that shit and keep your butthurt feelings to your fucking selves as us Black women continue being the people you blatantly emulate ht can never truly duplicate.