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GIMP's letter in last week's column appears to have been a fake. My apologies.

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After eight years of marriage, it turns out that the blowjobs I give are "good but not great" and are now getting "boring." My husband is unable to tell me anything specific that he wants me to do, just that I should "be creative." I've done pretty much everything I can think of over the years, so I have no idea where to go from here! My husband is my first partner, so I have no experience to draw from, and porn hardly seems the proper inspiration: visually exciting (for a guy) but no visible technique other than extreme deep-throating, which I am incapable of, as I have a sensitive gag reflex. Is there anything nonstandard but fun that you could suggest? I'm willing to try pretty much anything.

Thought I Was Doing It Well

Seeing as I think saying, "You're doing it wrong, do it better, but don't ask me how," is an asshole move, I'm tempted to give asshole advice. Something along the lines of "take a swig of Tabasco sauce immediately before popping his dick in your mouth."

You seem like a nice person, TIWDIW: a good sex partner, GGG, open to constructive criticism. But "I grow weary of your blowjobs — do something about it!" isn't constructive criticism. It's the kind of feedback that can leave a sex partner feeling inadequate and self-conscious. Your husband needs to come through with some suggestions and direction more helpful than "surprise me." (I bet he'd find that mouthful of Tabasco sauce surprising.)

Maybe your husband has no clue about what he wants you to do. But he should've tossed out some suggestions, invited you to do the same, and you two should've given 'em all a whirl until you found a few new tricks that worked.

Minor unfairnesses slosh around relationships like water in the bottom of a canoe, but "Be creative!" in this context isn't just unfair, it's paralyzing. A destructively criticized sex partner is apt to shut down. So your husband isn't just guilty of unfair behavior here, he's guilty of self-defeating behavior. 

Finally, you mention that your husband was your first partner. How many women has he been with? If the answer is "not many," then I would suggest that his frame of reference may not be large enough to craft an informed critique of your technique. For all he knows, you give amazing head. (Cue the straight men who'll tell your husband that he should be happy he's getting blowjobs at all.) But routine can make even the best blowjobs seem boring: It may not be the how of your blowjobs that bore him, but the when and the where. Give him the same old head in a new and exciting place (outside?) or circumstance (his hands tied behind him?) and see if that doesn't make your blowjobs exciting again.

While we're on the subject of oral sex: How are your husband's cunnilingus skills these days? If they're not all they could be, now's the time to tell him.

I'm a straight guy into intense bondage — extended scenes, sensory deprivation, whole-body casting — and the only people who have the gear and are willing to do it for free are gay guys. I "laid my kink cards on the table" at three months, per your instructions, and told my girlfriend that I sometimes get tied up by guys. She understood. She's been reading your column since she was 15. She's not worried that I'm gay; she didn't ask me to stop. Just writing to say thanks.

Only Gay For Bondage

You're welcome. Give my regards to the girlfriend.

I was upset by the letter last week about the devotee who posted pictures of her disabled girlfriend's body and wheelchair online without permission. I cannot speak for all devotees, but I was disgusted by the behavior of GIMP's girlfriend. I do not date people solely for their bodies and would never see my partner as "just a body" or post pictures of them online. As a devotee, I do find particular disabled bodies more attractive and sexually appealing than most "able" bodies. But for a relationship to move forward, there must be attraction on other levels and compatibility, and there must be mutual respect. I wanted to put this perspective out there for people who, like GIMP, are wary of devotees. In any "group," there will be people who are perverted and disrespectful.

Good Dev In Canada

A programming note: People typically write to me when someone has done them wrong or when they've done someone wrong. When the bad actor is someone like a devotee — the kind of person who is unlikely to be out to friends and family members about their deeply stigmatized sexual identity and/or interest — my readers can't weigh what they're learning about this particular devotee against what they know about the devotees they know and love ... because the devotees they know and love aren't out to them about being devotees. It's something to bear in mind when someone with a rare or deeply stigmatized sexual interest makes an appearance in the column. GIMP's girlfriend doesn't represent all devotees any more than TIWDIW's husband represents all straight men.

With that said ...

GIMP's letter appears to have been a fake. There's a disturbed person lurking on the web who pretends to be a woman in a wheelchair, as a number of readers informed me, and this person has peddled the same story before. A fake letter is going to make its way into the column from time to time, and as every question that does make the column is a good hypothetical to every Savage Love reader save one, I try not to get too worked up about that. But it is a problem when a fake question contributes to the negative public perception of people whose sexual desires are already so stigmatized. My apologies.

Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage.

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