I'm a smart, professional woman in my mid-30s who dates the same. I also happen to use a wheelchair: I have about as much physical strength as a quadriplegic but I have full sensation. I am careful about who I date because of my physical dependence on the people around me. I am also wary of folks who call themselves "devotees" — individuals with disability-related fetishes. I'm not sure what about this bothers me so much; I suppose it feels reductionist, and I've spent my life becoming more than a girl in a chair.
I started dating a lovely, successful, witty, beautiful woman a little more than a year ago. Things have been great. At the nine-month point, though, she confessed to being a devotee. I was crushed. But I trusted her, as I had gotten no icky feelings from her. Then she said that she wanted to try using my chair during sex — except with our roles reversed. Because I try to be GGG, I consented, as long as she agreed to couples therapy. In therapy, she said she had no idea I was in a chair before we met — which is plausible, as it was a blind date — and she just felt lucky when I showed up in a chair and then didn't know how to tell me. So ... we've been working it out.
Until last night. We were out with friends, she asked me to take a picture on her phone, and I found pics of me, from the neck down (clothed, thank God), and pics of my chair. I quickly sent them to myself and then, later, checked them on Google Images. My fears were confirmed: She's been posting these photos, without my consent, to "devotee" websites. I feel sick and heartbroken. I haven't confronted her yet.
In every other way, this woman's a catch. But I feel like my trust has been horribly violated. Is it time to DTMFA?
Girl In Massive Pain
Yes, GIMP, it's time to DTMFA.
And you gotta dump the motherfucker like you mean it. No "putting things on hold," no "scheduling an appointment" with your counselor. You're dumping her. The end.
Your soon-to-be-ex-girlfriend needs to understand that, as a direct result of her unbelievably selfish actions, she was dumped. It's the only way this motherfucker will ever wrap her head around how thoroughly she violated you. (It doesn't help that she lies to you — who sets a friend up on a blind date with someone in a wheelchair without mentioning that fact?) And now, thanks to her, pictures of you are floating around fetish websites. Your soon-to-be-ex-girlfriend destroyed your sense of sexual safety and shat all over the trust you placed in her.
Dump the motherfucker already.
And then, after your ex has had some time to wallow in regret and self-recrimination, give her a call. Depending on what you hear — and hopefully you'll hear an extended apology and that she's in therapy — you can make up your mind about whether you wanna TTMFB: "take the motherfucker back."
It sounds like your girlfriend has many good qualities, and you two clicked. Maybe losing you will be the shock she needs to get help. If it is — if she went and got help of her own accord, not because she thought it would win you back — then bizarro DTMFA ("date the motherfucker again") might be an option. But if you TTMFB, you two should start seeing a counselor together, you should take things four times as slowly this time, and she should get a phone that doesn't have a camera.
I'm a 32-year-old woman who has been in a monogamous relationship with a guy for two years. Recently, we took the plunge and moved in. Then he told me that he had given some thought to poly relationships before committing to me. Now I am feeling insecure: Although he claims no desire to be in a poly situation now, I feel that I alone will not be able to fulfill him entirely. I worry this relationship is doomed.
Fem Fetish Frosh
This probably isn't what you want to hear, but here goes: You alone will never be able to fulfill your boyfriend entirely ... just as he alone will never be able to fulfill you entirely. One person simply can't be all things to another person, and unmet needs, unfulfilled desires and unexplored possibilities are prices we pay to be in LTRs. Monogamous, polyamorous, Femdom or whatever: All coupled people walk around feeling a little unfulfilled. (Single people, too.)
So your boyfriend has decided that he prefers the kind of relationship he's in now, with its perks and drawbacks, to the hypothetical polyamorous scenarios he used to contemplate, which would've had their own perks and drawbacks. I'd say your relationship is doomed only if you can't bring yourself to take his "yes" — yes to you, yes to monoamory — for an answer.
My husband and I are not having as much sex as we used to. A big part of the problem: He's put on a lot of weight. I'm not looking to blame his weight gain for my libido issues. I just need to shut up and put out more. But I'm wondering if it's ethical to suggest incentivizing his weight loss with more sex. Sex every time he drops three pounds, followed by sex once a week once he hits his target weight?
Like Boys Slimmer
If you think your husband would respond positively to the challenge — if he's not weepily sensitive about his weight, if he likes set goals and specific rewards — then you should toss this proposal on the table right next to that bag of Doritos. Of course, I couldn't give you the same advice if the genders were reversed because ... well, we're out of room. So we'll have to leave the gendered politics of fat for a future column.
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