Dating in the BDSM World

Dear Andre, I’m a trans man in my early twenties and I’m entering into my first D/S (Dominant/Submissive) relationship with a femme top. I’m very new to the BDSM scene and met this woman through an online group that connects local kinky queers to each other. While I’m thrilled to find someone with like interests, my gut instinct is saying that something’s off. Only a few days after meeting online she was instructing me on what I should wear and eat, then ordering me to send her photos to verify I was “following rules”. A few hours after meeting for […]

A Dog in the Bed is Worth…

Dear Andre, I’m a woman in my late 20s and I’ve been dating a new partner for a few months now. Everything is going great, except for one small issue: She refuses to kick her dog out of bed when we have sex. I love animals and have several cats myself, but I like to think that I have healthy boundaries when it comes to their proximity to me when I’m either masturbating or having partnered sex. Snuggling in bed is fine, but as soon as things get sexy, they get delegated to the floor. If they’re quiet and unobtrusive, […]

A Groping Brother-in-Law

Dear Andre, I’m an openly gay man in my late 20s, and I’m blessed with a very supportive immediate family that includes my parents, grandparents, and older sister. My sister has been married to her husband for close to two years, and they have a ten-month-old son together. Recently I went home to celebrate Thanksgiving with everyone, and towards the end of the night I found myself alone in the kitchen cleaning up. My sister’s husband – who had been drinking heavily throughout the day – entered the kitchen and began chatting with me. Suddenly he came up behind me […]

Juggling Polyamory

Dear Andre,   I’ve been practicing ethical non-monogamy for several years and am in committed, loving relationships with three partners. Recently, two of my partners have approached me – independent of one another – to express feeling neglected. They have concerns about how I manage my time and told me that their time with me often feels either rushed or obligatory, which certainly isn’t my intention. They also want me to work on how and when I communicate my availability to them. How can I successfully delegate time to all of my partners in a way that makes them feel […]

Dating Transitionally

Dear Andre, I’m a 50-year-old gay man falling for a transgender man for the first time. The feelings seem to be reciprocated, but lately I’ve found myself hesitating to take things further than flirtation. Not because I have any personal qualms about being with someone trans, mind you, but honestly, I don’t have any trans friends and am just generally worried that I’m going to say something “stupid,” or be a terrible lover, or something else that will screw this up before it even starts. Help! Marc F. Dear Marc, Breathe. You’re doing a good job. Transgender folks are among […]

Masturbation Agonistes

Dear Andre, I’m a college student who has been living with her parents for the past two years until I graduate to save money. My parents and I get along relatively well, but there’s one main problem: I share a bedroom wall with them! I haven’t dated anyone seriously since starting college, but I’m a healthy masturbator and recently thought about investing in my first vibrator. I’m worried about the sound carrying through the walls, though, and while I think my parents are pretty chill about sex, I’m cringing right now just imagining them hearing me! What do I do? […]

I’m Home, Baltimore

If I have any one place to thank for my rich queer identity, it’s Baltimore. I grew up in a small farming town in southern New Jersey. Flush in resources like produce stands and ignorance, it left much to be desired when it came to embracing its LGBTQ youth. “Survival” looked a whole lot like maintaining good friends and a resilient spirit, as well as having access to the worldwide web. The Internet provided a haven for our raging hormones and conflicted thoughts, one that taught us about queerness, desire, pleasure, anatomy, reproductive rights, and cultural diversity. We learned shame […]