Sexolve 245: ‘My Girlfriend Dresses Like a Man.’
Harish Iyer answers all your love, sex and relationship queries in the weekly Sexolve.
(Trigger Warning: Some questions could make you feel agitated. Reader discretion is advised.)
Sexolve is equal rights activist Harish Iyer’s Q&A space on FIT.
If you have any queries regarding sex, sexuality, or your relationship, and need some advice, answers, or just someone to hear you out – write to Harish Iyer, and he’ll try and ‘sexolve’ it for you. Drop-in a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week’s Q&As are below:
‘I AM NOT SURE IF THE SEX WAS CONSENSUAL.’
I am a 22 year old man who is really feeling really bad about this one incident that happened. I have no one to share and am really scared and feeling really bad and guilty.
Last week, I stayed back at my friend’s place. It was a female friend. My female best friend and that’s what hurts. I did this to my best friend.
My best friend’s brother, one year junior than us, was sleeping on the couch. Everyone had passed out after a wild drinking night. However, I don’t know what got into me, in the night, I went up to my friend’s brother (who was also drunk) was sleeping on the couch in his boxers and hugged him from behind and slept. I got an erection, I lowered his boxers and pushed my penis inside his as!shole. I was erect as hell and wanted to release myself. Her brother also pinched me on my nipples, so guess he was awake, he didn’t complain.
However, the next day, I was feeling awkward and he acted as if nothing happened. There were a couple of moments that he smiled at me. His smile killed me. I don’t know if that is a sarcastic smile or “I know what you did” smile to guilt-trip me. I wonder how he could have not known, more so, because he pinched my nipple and didn’t run away when I put my entire penis inside him.
I am really worried. Did I rape him? Am I a rapist? I just need peace from this thought that I have indeed failed my best friend. I am secretly bisexual. I don’t even know if her brother is gay or bi… will this incident make him homo?
Could you please help me?
I don’t know how you can, but I am coming to you thinking that you may help me find a way. If I have indeed violated him, what do I do? Am I a really bad person? I am not. I don’t know what I am talking. I want to die. I really feel like dying of something else before the guilt kills me. Please please help me. Please.
Thank you for writing in. First, I want you to sit in a quiet place. Take two deep breaths and read patiently. Be kind to yourself, before even thinking of being kind to others.
Let’s break down what happened without any judgement assigned to the incidents. You went to your best friend's place. You all had a few extra glasses of alcohol. You were sloshed. Your friend was sloshed. Her brother was sloshed too. You and her brother slept on the same couch. You made the first move sexually. He reciprocated by making a subsequent sexual move. The above mentioned is what happened. Now let’s come to the second part of consent.
You tell me the answers to these two questions– who can tell if this sexual act was a consensual one or not? What do you need to do, if you need to seek answers about this?
EXACTLY! It is her brother who can ascertain if it was consensual.
It is he who has to be consulted for this answer. Just as you are going through so much in your head about this one night, for all we know, he could also be going through similar thoughts.
Maybe, you could break the ice and speak up about that night. Running away from the moment that troubles us, will not make the moment vanish from our memory or make the trouble go away.
Addressing the issue will most probably lead us somewhere.
Consent should be complete, continuous and should have the approval of all players in the act.
If your friend’s brother tells you that it was awkward, but it’s okay. Move on from there. Don’t still start dissecting the whole incident. If he tells you that he is unsure or upset, please give him time and space to recover. Move away from him so that he could heal by himself. Your guilt doesn’t help, but you could channelise the energy that comes from deep seated guilt for doing something beautiful.
Every adversity is an opportunity to push yourself to limits that you once thought were unconquerable.
Use this to make a pledge to check on your alcohol consumption and to ask for consent verbally and only proceed with sex only when you get a loud and unambiguous YES.
Give yourself time and space. Seek the services of a counselor. You could also write to me if you want to just vent out and always understand that there is a path to recovery. You can heal. And you will heal when you think you can heal.
Be blessed. Keep in touch.
P.S. Please speak to a counselor urgently and tell them clearly about your thoughts.
‘MY GIRLFRIEND DRESSES LIKE A MAN.’
I am a 29-year-old man. My girlfriend has short hair and walks around bossing over my male friends in an affectionate kind of way. She is a tomboy. All my male friends speak to her as if she is a man.
Also, most of her conversations and self-references are in the male pronoun. I lost my cool when my best friend told me that I possibly am a homo for loving this woman who looks like a man.
I was offended that he thought that we both were homo because she looks like a man. I am not gay and neither is my girlfriend trans. I don’t want my girlfriend to change, but I want all of these judgments to stop.
How do I make that happen?
Thank you for writing in. We don’t own our partners. We can’t dictate how they wish to call themselves. They are their own people. I am glad you recognise that.
Whether your partner recognises themselves as he or she or they is completely their prerogative. Whether they choose to keep their hair length short or long is their call too. Now if that looks boyish to anybody, it's their problem, not your partners’.
Gender should be self-identified and not socially imposed.
We tend to forget this basic fact that no one else would know what one’s gender or gender expression is rather than the person themselves.
So kudos to your partner for standing up and being who they really are in a world that wants everyone to fit in a stereotype.
To be authentic in a world of copy-cats is commendable.
Now coming to your friend who thinks it’s okay to “joke” about your partner’s gender – please take him to a friendly corner, and spell out the words MYOB to him. Tell him to mind his own business. Tell him politely, possibly whisper, that you don’t appreciate his poking his nose in your affairs.
There is no shame in being called a homosexual. It’s not a swear word. Maybe he realises someday that one could be a good homosexual person and that’s any day better than being a loser friend.
Stick with who you love, without the expectation of wanting your loved one to change for the world.
Things will get better.
P.S. kuch toh log kaheinge, logon ka kaam hai kehna.
‘My Husband Wants to Use a Vaccum Cleaner on His Penis.’
My husband has a weird fantasy. He wants to use a vacuum cleaner on his penis. He says he thinks he will enjoy the feeling of his pubic hair moving. I am scared that his penis will get sucked in. How do I tell him?
Thank you for writing in.
Going by pure physics, here the level of danger could be determined by the force of suction. That said, one shouldn’t take chances with this one.
If it is about feeling good looking at the pubic hair getting excited by an external force, I know that hair could move using a duster that uses static force. It is one of those colourful dusters that are used to clean fans, glass etc.
How would you tell him? There is no procedure to tell him just to be sensitive.
Many of us have fantasies that could be termed as “weird”. But they are real to us.
Don’t bully him for his fantasy when you tell him what you feel about it.
P.S. Don’t judge.
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