Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Savage Love: What makes a feminist?

Posted By on Wed, Jan 6, 2016 at 11:40 AM

(Editor’s note: We’re very happy to add a new voice to NUVO’s pages — OK, he’s not technically “new,” but he’s new to us. Dan Savage has been offering advice on sex and relationships for over two decades from his home office on the West Coast. Direct your questions to Dan’s email:

I’m a 45-year-old straight male. Politically and socially, I consider myself an ardent feminist. There is nothing I enjoy more than giving a woman an orgasm or two. I’m very GGG and will cheerfully do whatever it takes. Fingers, tongue, cock, vibrator—I’m in. If it takes a long time, so much the better. I’m okay with all of that. Now and again, though, I really like a quickie, a good old-fashioned “Wham, bam, thank you, ma’am!” The only ladies I’ve found willing to engage in those cock-centric acts are sex workers. I’m okay with that, too. But the last time I paid for it, with a woman I had patronized before, I was just about to slip my cock in doggy-style when her phone rang. It was in reach, and she picked it up! I hesitated, but she didn’t pull away, and in fact pushed back a bit while she answered. I figured this was what I came for, so I proceeded. Her cavalier attitude toward being fucked from behind while having a trivial phone conversation wound up being a huge turn-on for me. By the time she finished her 20-second call, I was finished as well. I hadn’t come that quickly since I was a teen. She laughed that she should take calls more often. What kind of beast am I that I really enjoyed such utter indifference? Does this reveal some dark secret deep in my psyche? How can that mesh with my otherwise feminist views?

Premature Ejaculation Needs Some Introspective View Examined

First, PENSIVE, “enjoys giving women orgasms” sets the bar for “ardent feminist” just a bit low. So here’s hoping your feminism involves more than penetrating a willing partner with your fingers, tongue, cock, and whatever vibrators happen to be lying around. Because if your feminism doesn’t include support for pro-choice policies and candidates, regular donations to Planned Parenthood, backing equal pay for equal work, speaking up when other men say shitty/rapey/dehumanizing things about women (particularly when there isn’t a woman in the room whose pussy you want to lick until you come, because feminism!)—and more—then you’re not a feminist, ardent or otherwise.

Moving on… Why did it turn you on when the sex worker took a call during your session? Because it did. Turn-ons are subjective and mysterious. People who are curious about their turn-ons have to start with “this turns me on” and work backward from there. And to figure out why a particular fabric/adornment/attitude/scenario arouses us, we use the only tools available to us—guesswork and self-serving rationalizations—to invent a backstory that makes some sort of logical sense, and then we apply it to something (kinks, turn-ons, orgasms) that really defies logic.

So, PENSIVE, if I were to hazard some guesswork on your behalf, I’d probably go with this: Being treated with passive contempt by someone that you are supposed to be wielding power over (the woman you’re fucking, a sex worker you’ve hired)—being subtly humiliated and mildly degraded by that woman—taps a vein of eroticized self-hatred that makes you come quickly and come hard.

And while that’s wonderful for you, PENSIVE, it isn’t proof you’re a feminist.

Listen to Dan’s podcast every week at

@fakedansavage on Twitter

 (NOTE: This nugget of advice appeared in the Jan. 6, 2016 issue of NUVO.)

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About The Author

Dan Savage

Dan Savage

In addition to being a nationally syndicated sex advice columnist and author of books, Savage can also lay claim to being the only person at his home paper to have actually converted his sexuality into a profession. He has a boyfriend and a child. He is also wealthy beyond the dreams of avarice and cheats at racketball... more

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