by Vianca Masucci
This month, I’m tackling reader submitted questions because, as we all know, sex and relationships are complicated AF. If you have any questions for me, feel free to holla at me on Twitter @viancjm or message me on Facebook (weirdly, I’m the only Vianca Masucci on there). No question is too extra and I don’t bite…without consent.
Hi Vianca. I’m wondering if you could give me some advice about my roommate. We have been living together for 9 months but in the last two months she has been more comfortable around the house in ways that make me uncomfortable. Lately she has been walking around the house naked with some frequency. I have even walked in on her having sex in the living room twice (!) now. She jokes about it and laughs it off. I don’t want to shame her or be a prude or anything like that but I am not comfortable. She is so open about her sexuality and seems to be really enjoying the freedom of letting it all hang loose. I’m not like that. The times I have mentioned it she has responded with the ‘we’re all girls here’ argument. Am I overreacting? Should I just suck it up and learn to be more sex positive and accepting?”
Your situation is, actually, rather complex! To dissect it, I want to start by pointing out that sex positivity is the belief that safe sexual expression between consenting adults is healthy and normal, no matter the act or circumstance. With that definition in mind, it becomes clear what the real issue is between you and your roommate: consent. My inclination—gathered from your observation that she revels in her open nudity and the fact that she is purposefully having sex in shared spaces when she knows you can catch her—is that she has some exhibitionist tendencies. She may be repeating this behavior, whether consciously or not, because it gives her a sexual thrill. Either way, it is clear that your roommate is engaging you in her sexual expression without your consent. Further, in belittling your concerns when you have voiced them, she’s manipulating the concept of sex positivity to shame you for your modesty. Yikes!
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Here’s my advice: burst her bubble. Sit her down for a talk and say this to her: “Boo boo kitty, I have told you repeatedly that I am not comfortable with you walking around our house naked or having sex in the shared spaces. I am not a prude and you are not crusader for sex positivity. I just want to feel comfortable in my house (that I pay for) and I can’t because you keeping throwing your junk in my face even though I have never given you consent to do that. At this point, it is harassment. If you don’t stop, we will need to reevaluate our living arrangements.” Of course, you don’t need to use this exact wording, but you need to be firm. You must make it clear to her that this issue is bigger than her perception of you as uptight so that she does not dismiss your concerns.
If she is receptive to your bubble bursting, establish some boundaries. A good solution will always include a bit of compromise. Make it clear that any shared space should be PG-13 and plainly outline what that means to you. Offer to keep her informed of any long stretches of time when you won’t be home so that she can let her naked flag fly in your absence and negotiate a system for informing her if you’re coming home unexpected.
If she is not receptive, first, give her a chance to cool down. If she perceives herself as an unblemished example of sex positivity, being called on her harassing behavior may be a hard pill for her to swallow. If she doesn’t eventually come around, start looking for a new roommate. Her behavior is unacceptable so don’t accept it. I assume that your lease will be expiring in three months? Take advantage of the opportunity to plan more comfortable living arrangements.
During my weekend Grindr binge, I met a guy who wanted to give me money. I was offended. I told him that I don’t exchange sex for money but it wasn’t about that. He didn’t want anything in return except for a promise that I would spend it on ‘lavishing myself’. Apparently, he gets his rocks from giving away money and having ‘sexy guys use it for self care’. Thinking that this was some kind of scam, I called his bluff and asked him to send a certain amount of money to my google wallet. He immediately sent double the amount and promised even more if I wanted it. This seems like a too good to be true scenario. Of course, I would love to keep getting this money but everyone knows that there is no such thing as a free lunch. I feel like there will be unforeseen consequences. I imagine either being stalked, him expecting me to be indebted to him in the future for giving me money, or having issues with taxes. Beyond that I also worrying about who this person is who would just give me their money without asking for anything in return. I imagine that he is not mentally stable and I would be taking advantage of him in that scenario. He could even be someone dangerous. There are just too many questions and not enough answers. What do you think I should do?”
Reader, if you google “ financial domination” or “money slave” you’ll find that what this mysterious internet man is offering you is rooted in a well-documented BDSM fetish. Though uncommon, this arrangement is not as outlandish as you think. That’s not to say that there are no potential consequences of starting a relationship with him. Yes, it may or may not end baldy. But, that’s also true for any relationship you start with any person at any time under any circumstance.
Here’s what I think: This guy’s kink does not qualify him as a risk, as you seem to think it does. He is just a guy looking for pleasure on Grindr, similar to the way you were looking. If you still have him on the (metaphorical) hook, ask him more about his fetish. Get an idea of what his desires and intentions are for a prospective relationship. If you’re into what he’s offering, go for it! This is a unique opportunity to expand your sexual repertoire in an unusual, perhaps even exciting, way. Take advantage of that only if you’re comfortable; don’t pressure yourself into a decision because of the novelty of the situation.
So how can you avoid some of these potential problems that you’re worried about? Some kinksters opt to draw up contracts that outline the extent of their relationships and expectations of each party. This would protect you from some of the concerns you raise in your message. Additionally, the contract-writing process will facilitate a detailed conversation about the limits of the relationship which may soothe your anxiety. It may also kill money slave’s fantasy, destroying his interest in you. But, that’s a risk you may deem necessary. Your call.
As for whether or not receiving financial assistance from a money slave will affect your taxes: I have less than absolutely no fucking idea. Is there an accountant in the house?
“I have a question! are those fancy condoms (like the ones that heat up) safe? Asking…for a friend.”
Great question, reader! Yes, the warming condoms are technically safe, in that they will cause no long-term harm. All the chemical compounds used in those ‘warming’ lubricants are tested and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, one of the main ingredients used in the lubricant, propylene glycol, can cause skin irritation in folks with sensitive skin or pre-existing skin conditions and aggravate existing genital infections. If you have eczema or any other skin conditions, you should check with a doctor before using these types of condoms (or avoid them completely). And, of course, if you have an existing infection, get it treated before it worsens or you give it to your partner! It is lovely to share in a relationship…unless what you’re sharing is genital bacteria.
Got a sex and/or relationship question for Vianca? Tweet her @viancjm.
Hailing from Newark, New Jersey, Vianca Masucci is a health advocate working to eliminate health disparities in underserved populations. Her voice is influenced by her experiences navigating this world as a queer, Afro-Latina with a thousand-year-old soul and an insatiable appetite for social justice. Her Meyers-Briggs personality type is IDGAF.
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