Q: I recently discovered, accidentally, while moving things out of my 16-year-old son's room prior to a renovation, a cache of my sex toys that had mysteriously disappeared over the past year. While I've wondered how it was possible to misplace a glow-in-the-dark crucifix-shaped dildo (complete with Jesus in relief), it never dawned on me that it might be an inside job.
This raises several issues. There's the you-stole-my-stuff problem, with responses available from the full range of the passive-aggressive scale. But the nature of the swag complicates matters. I kind of need to know whether he took them to snicker over with his friends or whether he has used them. I'm dead certain if he's used my insertables, that he did so without putting condoms on them first.
So it seems I need to force the you-stole-my-stuff conversation in order to have the safe-toy-use conversation. Suggestions? —Discomfited Aged Deviant
A: You're going to have a long talk with the little shit, DAD.
First, apologize for snooping — accidentally, of course, during "a renovation." Uh-huh. Then bring up the sex toys. Be matter-of-fact about it, DAD, but firm enough to communicate a sense of violation: He violated your privacy and your glow-in-the-dark crucifix-shaped dildo, a sex toy that was consecrated to your orifice(s) and your orifice(s) alone. ("Your orifice(s)" refers to your own personal orifice, DAD, as well as the orifices of your chosen sex partners, a position that is not — one hopes — open to your 16-year-old son.) Don't let on that you're embarrassed, even if you are — force a smile, if you can.
Then turn the tables on your son and embarrass the shit out of the little shit: Ask him if he was penetrating himself with your crucidildo, and ask him if he has any questions about sex toys in general or butt toys in particular. He'll insist that he wasn't sticking that thing in his ass — although we both know he was — because he'll want to end this conversation as quickly as possible. Your job, DAD, is to drag ... this ... talk ... out ... to achieve maximum mortification.
Tell him that you're aware that he might be too shy to admit to using butt toys or to ask for info about the proper use of butt toys, so ... you're going to walk him through butt-toy safety and etiquette just to be on the safe side. Then explain it all to him. Tell him about the importance of using lots of lube, of washing sex toys with hot water and a little soap after each use, of putting condoms over them for safety's sake — and tell him about how one preps an orifice to accept a glow-in-the-dark crucifix (and just how many "Our Fathers" one has to say for penance after doing such a thing). Conclude by pointing out that sex toys aren't something people share (particularly with their parents), so the one you'd been using, the one he stole and used himself, is going to have to be deconsecrated now, i.e., disposed of. Then offer to get him one of his own and a bottle of lube.
The point is to make him feel bad for invading your privacy and swiping your stuff, DAD, but not for whatever it was he might have done with your stuff. A nice long talk about butt toys — safe use, storage, ethical procurement — will make him realize that violating your privacy and stealing your sex toys invites conversations that he doesn't want to have with his dad.
Q: My wife of three years has a problem with me masturbating. At one point, we made a deal that I wouldn't do it while she's in the house. That would be just fine with me, except that she is rarely out of the house without me. Our sex is really, really great, but I'm pretty horny and I like to masturbate once in a while. She says that she feels like I'm cheating on her. About a year ago, I did cheat on her — yes, I'm an idiot — and maybe this is my punishment, but I've always needed to masturbate a lot. I do it to relieve stress and sometimes just because I get horny and I want to stop being horny in a minute or two so that I can concentrate on something else. This just doesn't have very much to do with her, and I feel stupid trying to justify myself to her on this matter. How do you think I should resolve this situation? —Jerk Off
A: When someone you love is irrational and controlling about some aspect of your private life that doesn't involve or affect her — say, your masturbatory routine, JO — you have two options:
First, you can waste a lot of time and energy trying to talk her out of being irrational and controlling and idiotic. That approach is unlikely to make things better, and it could make matters worse: "Gee, you must really love to beat off without me around, seeing as you're really going to the mat for this."
Your second, and far superior, option is to tell her what she wants to hear — "For you, I won't masturbate" — and then beat off when you want to or when you need to and lie about it. Beat off on the kitchen table when she's out of the house; slip away for 10 minutes to take a "crap" or a "nap" when she's home. So long as you're an attentive lover and you're not neglecting her needs, and so long as you're not inconsiderately leaving evidence all over the place (wash out your own crusty come socks), feel free to work around her irrationality with a little harmless deceit.
Q: I dislike a lot of things about your column: I disagree with your stance on religion and I'm against homosexual marriage. But I love reading your column: It's like a car wreck — I have to look. So I have a question for you.
I am a 32-year-old heterosexual married man. My wife and I have a great sex life. We have been married just over a year. She is pretty open to just about anything, except one thing: When she is blowing me, sometimes instead of coming in her mouth, I want to come all over her face. She finds that repulsive. She normally has no problem with swallowing my come or letting me come on her chest. But for some reason, the face just creeps her out. She says it's degrading. Now, I cannot for the life of me understand how unloading on her face is any more degrading than coming in her mouth or on her chest. Any advice? —Facials Are Causing Embarrassment
A: Sorry FACE, but your wife is correct: Facials are degrading — and that's why they're so hot. Now, I would normally arm a married man in your predicament with some killer talking points guaranteed to convince his wife to let him blow a load on her face, FACE, but ... I'm not going to help you out. While being denied a little sex advice doesn't compare to being denied the right to wed, I reserve the right to discriminate against straight married assholes who support discrimination against me.
Now, if there's a married straight man out there who supports marriage equality and wants some advice on talking the wife into facials, I would be more than happy to share my surefire, fail-proof, 100-percent-guaranteed pro-facial arguments with you. And if you're a justice on the Iowa State Supreme Court — which last week ruled unanimously in favor of marriage equality for same-sex couples — I'll toss in a free phone consultation.Download the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage. Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org