Q: Recently, my boyfriend and I broke up, one reason being his lack of initiative in calling me. After we broke up, I spoke with several of my girlfriends and found out that they, too, have similar troubles with their boyfriends or guys they are seeing. Some of these women are in serious, long-term, loving relationships. It seems to me that this is a blight on modern relationships. Women want to get phone calls from our significant others because it lets us know we are cared for, but men seem to be indifferent, even after its been brought up and discussed. Are we women asking for too much? Or are men being thoughtless? Give Me A Call
A: Ive been racking my brain for hours, GMAC, in a desperate effort to recall if I have ever everevereverever received a question that interests me less than yours. I get a lot of really insipid questions from people about piddling bullshit, and yet the only letters I can recall that even come close to yours are the ones that pour in from straight women worried that their boyfriends or husbands are secretly gay. Heres a sampling from some of those actual letters (and my actual responses):
He likes to wear bright colors. Is he gay? (No, hes not. If he liked sucking my cock, maybe.) My boyfriend really gets off on eating my ass, which hell happily do for ages. I enjoy it, and he certainly enjoys it. But I worry: Is he gay? (No, hes not. If he got off on eating my ass, maybe.) My husband has a really close male friend. They go to games together, and sometimes even to the gym. Are they gay? (No, theyre not. Sometimes even straight guys go to the gym.)
OK, GMAC, on to your letter: Straight women want to get phone calls from their significant others because it lets them know that theyre cared for, but straight men seem to be indifferent to making those kinds of calls, even after its been brought up and discussed. So are women asking too much? Or are men being thoughtless? Cant the answer to both questions be yes?
Yes, straight women are asking too much, GMAC. Stereotypical straight men, as every woman knows, dont like to gab away on the phone. A straight guy would rather show you he loves you by, say, fixing your car or coming all over your face. If youre attracted to straight guys, a lack of initiative in the phone-call department and the occasional facial are part of the price of admission. Want someone to call you up just to talk? Get some girlfriends or stop paying off your credit cards.
Yes, straight men are thoughtless. Stereotypical straight women, as every man knows, like to get little calls, you know, just cause. If straight guys were more thoughtful, it might occur to them that a direct correlation exists between the number of little calls a girl gets and the number of facials shes willing to sit still for.
Finally, GMAC, do me a favor. If you ever find yourself dating a guy who calls you constantly just to let you know how much he cares, please dont write me a letter like this: Hes always calling to check in, ask me how my day is going, and tell me he loves me. Hes so considerate, Dan! Do you think hes gay? Because we both know the answer to that question is yes.
Q: Im 19, in the army, and in the closet. My best friend, call him Basra, works with me, and is exactly my type. Since were in the Army, were pretty close. We sleep in the same room, we take joint showers, etc. Ive sent him a few signals as much as I dare, because Im afraid to expose myself in case he isnt gay. Hes also sent some signals, but thats probably just wishful thinking. I have no idea what to do. I cant stop hanging out with him because were in the Army, and I cant risk exposing myself to him because if he isnt gay hed probably tell his friend Baghdad, who would beat the crap out of me. In Love Yet Afraid
A: The awareness that my advice, if bad, could get you killed, ILYA, is kind of inhibiting. If I order you to send less-subtle signals and it turns out that Basra isnt gay, and Basra tells Baghdad, then Ive got blood on my hands (or keyboard). Even if Basra is gay, how can we be sure that only Basra will pick up on your less-subtle signals? In those communal showers and sleeping quarters, I imagine less-subtle signal-sending could get you guys both killed. So Im going to punt. A lot of dudes in the armed forces read Savage Love for the freak factor and Id like to invite you guys gay or straight, homophobic or homophile to weigh in. What the hell should ILYA do, guys?
Q: The intro to your column about losing your virginity it went into the birth of Jesus was craptastic. Did you have to go there? Did you have to degrade Jesus and Mary?
Before you write me off as a Fox News-watching, Wal-Mart-shopping, Bush-supporting Bible thumper, please note that I am a liberal Democrat living in a blue-collar city in a blue state. I voted for Dukakis, Clinton, Gore and Kerry. But I also try to live a Christian life. Your statements were sacrilegious. Jesus and Mary deserve a little respect. Your Friend
A: I dont see how its disrespectful, degrading or theologically incorrect to point out that if Mary was a virgin when she conceived, and if you dont buy off on the Virgin Birth (the idea that Jesus somehow passed out of Marys uterus and down through her vaginal canal without disturbing her hymen), then Marys hymen broke when the kid was born. Isnt the whole point of the Jesus thang that He was the word made flesh? And if Mel Gibson can portray his death in detail so gory it borders on the pornographic, how can an aside about the mechanics of his birth be off-limits?
And finally, to Rob in Albany who felt my aside was proof of my intolerance and hypocrisy: Joking about Christianity isnt evidence that Im intolerant hell, Im perfectly willing to tolerate Christians. I have never, for instance, attempted to prevent Christians from marrying each other or tried to stop them from adopting children or worked to make it illegal for them to hold certain jobs. I dont threaten to boycott companies that market their products to Christians, and I dont organize letter-writing campaigns to complain about Christian characters on television.
It would indeed be hypocritical for me to complain about fundamentalist Christians whove done all of the above to gay people if I turned around and did the same thing to Christians but, again, Ive done no such thing. Intolerant? Hell, Im a model of tolerance! Oh, sure, I joked about the Virgin Birth because I think its silly and sexphobic. And Im free to say as much, however unpleasant it is for some Christians to hear. Fundamentalist Christians, for their part, are free to think homosexuality is sinful and unnatural, and theyre free to say so, however unpleasant it is for me to hear. But fundamentalists arent willing to just speak their piece, Rob. Nope, they seek to persecute people for being gay, and thats where their low opinion of homosexuality which, again, they have an absolute right to hold transubstantiates into intolerance.Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org