a straight college guy, age 21, and I share a house with some
buddies and a couple. Anyhow, the interesting stuff: This
couple has been together for four years. They’re both quite
sexual, but she’s got more libido than he does. I’ve got a
big sex drive, too. Both of them have stated an openness to
polyamorous situations. She started flirting with me three
weeks ago, and flirting turned into no-sex threesomes with
her and her BF every few nights.
I’m perfectly fine with poly, or I wouldn’t be doing this,
but it feels a bit awkward fingering her or sucking on her
nipples while her boyfriend is in the room, or even the same
bed. Both of us guys are straight and have no desire to see
the other naked, so there’s none of that going on. I’ve got
no beef with guys who like beef, but being in a sexual situation
with another guy—like the one going on here—makes me uncomfortable.
And anyway, I feel like he’s the “primary” one, the one she
loves and kisses, so I move over whenever he shows interest.
This is reinforced because she said that she didn’t feel comfortable
kissing other guys—although fingering is fine (?)—and I get
the impression (although it could be my imagination) that
he’s not entirely happy that I’m cuddling and/or fingering
his girlfriend while he plays Dawn of War five feet away from
I’m fine with being the “secondary” guy. But I’d much rather
have some privacy if we—meaning me and her—are gonna try to
get each other off, particularly if this arrangement of ours
should progress to actual sex. But this is tough, since there’s
nowhere else in the house to go other than their room. Incidentally,
we haven’t told our other friends/housemates about this, although
they could probably put two and two together; she screams
in orgasm, and half an hour later I say good night and go
back down to my room.
Any advice for making the situation more comfortable for all
Think Of A Clever Name
fingering her, you’re sucking her tits, you’re getting her
off (screaming orgasms induced dicklessly), she’s getting
you off (your orgasms induced somehow or other)—which means,
CTOACN, that this can’t be described as a “no-sex” arrangement.
You’re not having vaginal intercourse, you’re not kissing
the girl, but you’re having sex, and a lot of it.
But I wouldn’t slap a 10-dollar word like “polyamorous” on
what you’re doing. You may be in a polyamorous relationship
someday—with this couple, with some other couple—but all you’re
really doing at the moment is “messing around.”
OK, CTOACN, it sounds like this girl is pretty up front about
what she’s comfortable doing—no kissing, no vaginal intercourse
(for you)—and clear about her boundaries. You need to be similarly
assertive. Tell them both that you’re not comfortable messing
around while he’s in the room. So instead of playing Dawn
of War while you two mess around, her boyfriend could
head to the library, go for a walk, do some reading in the
communal space of your shared house, or—hey—go play Dawn
of War in your room for a while.
If he balks, CTOACN, then you may want to reconsider the assumptions
you’ve made about him. You’re not comfortable with any hint
of guy-on-guy, but he may want to be in the room while you’re
messing around with his girlfriend because he digs that hint.
I’m not saying that he’s bi, or that he wants to get with
you, as the kids were only too recently saying—but I’m not
saying he isn’t bi or doesn’t want to get with
you, either. I guess what I’m saying is . . .
Considering (1) his presence every time you’re messing around
with her (surely the library, the living room, or your room
would’ve occurred to him if he were uncomfortable being in
the same room while you
his girlfriend), (2) the limitations she’s placed on the kind
of sex she’ll have with you, and (3) his tendency to suddenly
“show interest” after you’ve been messing around with his
girlfriend (at which point you “move over” and, presumably,
out), I’m thinking this girl’s boyfriend is into cuckolding-lite.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course. But
it could mean asking for quality time alone with his girlfriend
would bring the messing around to an end.
GETS BETTER: Last week, I wrote about Billy Lucas, a 15-year-old
kid in Indiana who took his own life after enduring years
of bullying for being gay. Billy didn’t identify as gay and
may not have been gay. But the consequences of anti-gay bullying—whether
the kid being harassed is gay or closeted or just different—are
often the same: isolation, pain, despair, and suicide.
After last week’s column went to press, I learned about another
teenager—this one openly gay—who recently took his own life.
Cody J. Barker was a 17-year-old high-school student in Shiocton,
Wisconsin. Cody was a cyclist and a gardener and a Lady Gaga
fan who had planned to start a gay-straight student alliance
at his high school this fall. “He really cared about making
schools a safe place for students,” a friend of Cody’s told
the Wisconsin Gazette. “That wasn’t always his own
experience with school.”
Billy Lucas in Indiana, Cody Barker in Wisconsin, Justin Aaberg
in Minnesota—these three boys and countless other LGBT kids
have committed suicide because they couldn’t picture a future
That’s why my boyfriend and I launched the It Gets Better
Project, a slightly grand name for a YouTube channel (youtube.com/itgetsbetter
project). We made a short video about our lives—the harassment
we endured in school, the full and rewarding lives we enjoy
now—and invited other LGBT adults to make and upload videos
about their lives. The response has been completely overwhelming:
thousands of members, hundreds of thousands of views, and
more than 100 videos from people all over the world sharing
their stories, all in an effort to let bullied and isolated
and unhappy LGBT kids know that it gets better.
There are a couple of similar and ongoing projects that deserve
a shout-out: the amazing and deeply moving I’m from Driftwood
(imfromdrift wood.com) documents “true stories by gay people
all over.” Please check it out. And there’s a large archive
of YouTube videos from LGBT teenagers talking about their
own coming-out experiences at tinyurl.com/2fuwffh. And if
any LGBT teenagers reading this are contemplating suicide,
please visit the Trevor Project (thetrevorproject.org), a
suicide-prevention project for gay teenagers, or call its
24-hour hotline at 866-488-7386.
And here’s a thought for people who are thinking about making
videos for the It Gets Better Project: Many of the early submitted
videos focused on something many gay adults have in common
with gay kids—our experiences with being bullied. The pain
we endured as kids should be touched on. But it would be great
to see more videos that give gay young people a picture of
the lives they could make for themselves if they just hang
in there. I realize that sometimes it’s hard to talk about
the good in our lives, the things that make us happy, because
it feels braggy and jinxy. And knowing that not everyone finds
happiness in the same things can make us self-conscious. But
LGBT kids who don’t know any LGBT adults need to see—with
their own eyes—that gay adults lead happy and rewarding lives.
So if you decide to make a video—and I hope that you do—don’t
just share your pain. Share your joy. Give ’em hope. Save