I am a 22-year-old female. I liked guys when I was in school, but then I developed a HUGE crush on Tegan and Sara when I was nearly 20. I like the idea of being with women, but I have never had a major crush on anyone since. So I'm really confused over my sexual orientation. Can someone's whole sexual orientation just change overnight? My confusion is compounded by the fact that I've never held someone's hand, been kissed or done anything else. I want to experience such things, and generally just stop feeling like a loser.
Awfully Nervous Over Newness
"When I was young, I dated boys," said Tegan Quin. "I never thought about love or being 'in love.' And I never thought about sexuality. … Until I kissed a girl. Then I knew who I really was. I was gay."
Oh, hey, I hope you don't mind that I shared your letter with Tegan and Sara, ANON. I figured you might appreciate getting some advice from your potentially life-altering crush.
Like you, Tegan used to assume she was straight.
"I'd gone most of my teens crushing on guys like Jared Leto, thinking that must make me straight," says Tegan. "Even though secretly I was dreaming of make-outs with Claire Danes. I thought my crush on Jared Leto vetoed my secret girl crush on Claire Danes. Maybe that was society weighing down on me. Perhaps it was peer pressure keeping me inside the lines of heterosexuality. Or, likely, I just liked them both."
Based on your letter, Tegan suspects that you might like both.
"Sexuality is not hard lines," says Tegan. "It's not black and white. Not for all of us, anyway. My advice: Go and kiss a girl, go and hold a boy's hand. Don't worry about who you are until you find out what you like. Maybe you'll like both — and yay if that's the way it turns out, because that means you have twice as many people to fall in love with."
And while Tegan doesn't think a person's sexuality can change overnight, she knows from personal experience that a person's awareness of their sexuality can change overnight.
"You can have an awakening," says Tegan. "Like I did when I first kissed a girl. A whole new world can absolutely be waiting for you if you end up feeling up to exploring it. Good luck!"
Tegan and Sara's newest album is Get Along, and they're about to embark on a tour of North America. For tour dates and more, go to www.teganandsara.com.
I'm a professional snowboarder. I have a problem that I don't have anybody to talk to about. When I jerk it, I have to put a finger in my asshole to finish. That's the only way I can come. I can't even come in a girl's pussy without sneaking a finger in my back door. I go to great lengths to hide it because I don't want them to think I'm gay. (I have no problem with other people being gay. It's just that you do not want snowboard groupies thinking you're gay. Girls talk, and then you never get laid again and all of your bros find out you're sticking things up your butt.) How do I learn to come without prostate stimulation?
Butt-Using Manly Man Entirely Distressed
I get a dozen letters a week from girls whose boyfriends "can't come." These girls tell me that their boyfriends get hard and stay hard and seem to enjoy fucking them, but their boyfriends never climax. Invariably, these girls ask me if their boyfriends are gay.
Your letter made me wonder how many of these girls are dating guys like you, BUMMED. That is, guys who need a poke in the prostate in order to come but either haven't figured that out yet or know it but don't wanna risk it because their girlfriends might think they were gay. But their girlfriends think they're gay anyway — because they're not coming. So it looks like you're damned if you do and damned if you don't.
A few practical suggestions:
(1) Get a butt plug. It's a butt toy that your sphincter muscles hold in place — picture a small lava lamp that fits in your ass — and once you get it in, it won't slip out. Provided your groupiefriends aren't touching your asshole or looking directly at it, they won't even know it's there. And a butt plug might help you break the strong mental association you've made between finger-in-hole and climaxing. A few dozen look-ma-no-finger-in-hole orgasms might help you transition to look-ma-nothing-in-my-hole orgasms.
(2) Get a girlfriend. I'm not a noted proponent of monogamous coupling, but you might benefit from opening up to one person, someone you can trust with your secret. That will require an investment of time and emotional energy, but the payoff could be huge. Imagine having sex with someone who you didn't have to worry about judging you.
(3) Get over yourself. You're a heterosexual guy who needs a little heterosexual anal play during heterosexual sex in order to get off heterosexually. There are lots of straight guys like you out there. Your sexuality isn't the problem; your need for prostate stimulation isn't the problem. The problem is your shame and your desire to hide this aspect of your sexuality from your groupies and bros. You may not be gay, but you do need to come out.
DEAR READERS: David Rakoff died last week. He was a writer, a contributor to This American Life, and a spectacular human being. His books — Half Empty, Don't Get Too Comfortable and Fraud — are terrific. If you haven't read David's books, please read them now. My heart goes out to David's family and to his countless friends. To get an idea of how many lives David touched, spend some time at www.rorevans.tumblr.com.
Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage.