What’s up, gash-snackers?
Remember when I was bitching about it being winter forever?
Remember when it felt like winter would never end???
Well! The ground has thawed! The breeze has mellowed!
The daffodils and crocuses (croci?) are budding through the damp, cool earth, sending slender green shoots of hope up into the winking sun of a brand new day!!
It’s Spring!! We’ve turned the clocks forward! I wake up in the light and come home from work in the light!
Little lambkins are baaaing and there are finally Cadbury Eggs at Walgreens and all the stores are trying to convince me that pastel colors are “what’s fresh this season” and it’s not cold even a little!
I’m thrilled. Can you tell I’m thrilled?
Today I got my bright orange scooter, Stella, out of storage and tried to kickstart it.
It wouldn’t start.
Well. Sometimes it does that.
I gave up trying and went back inside.
I knew what had to happen.
I put on an really tight sweater, an incredibly tight skirt, and extra eyeliner.
Then I pushed my scooter a half-mile (uphill! It weighs 250 pounds!) to the repair shop, sweating in the heat of the first truly hot day this year.
Let me tell you how much truckers like to see girls in tight sweaters pushing scooters.
And you know why I did this?
You know why I pushed my fucking heavy, solid metal scooter uphill in a tightass outfit in the unseasonable 80-degree heat, faggettes?
For sex! For the faintest possibility – the merest whiff! - of sex!
There is a hot woman who works at the scooter repair shop.
It’s no one’s fault.
As I grunted and pushed my baby up the shop driveway, I saw her:
Shining dark hair all slicked back.
Lovely muscles visible under a black shop t-shirt.
A streak of engine grease on her jeans; on the phone, making an annoyed face, as she talked to a customer.
She hung up the phone and grinned at me. (Those teeth!! My god! Like an ad for teeth!)
Her: Heeey, I know this bike. Whatsa matter, she sick?
Me: Uh..yempf. Agalbbbale.
I handed her my keys, and she circled my bike like a vulture, squeezing the brakes, stroking the chassis, testing the clutch.
The whole time, Ginuwine’s “Pony” was playing in my head.
What is wrong with me?
Hmph. I’ll tell you what’s wrong. I know what’s up.
It’s a proven and long-noted fact that dykes come out of hibernation riiight about…now.
Suddenly the bars are packed.
The dog park is hoppin’.
The produce section at the co-op is jammed with gayelles squeezing mangoes and the path around the lake is filled with zip-up-clad lesbians frolicking in the sunshine.
Everyone’s been inside for months, and now they’re ready to mate! Nature compels us to mate over and over, and there will be no offspring, no matter how often we do it! #winningatnature!
Now, let’s be real, here: I have virtually no chance of sleeping with the cute repair shop girl.
Not only am I unable to speak around her, I don’t even know yet if she likes girls.
And yet here I am, trussing myself up like a show pony, thinking filthy things while she talks to me about the front end suspension being loose.
I’ll tell ya what’s loose.
Gawd help me. Gawd help us all.
Spring is in the air, and everyone’s randy, right?
We want to fuck! We want to fuck everyone!
So that’s why today…
I wanna talk about Open Relationships.
Yeeeees, homosexuelles, I do.
‘Cause I’m in one, and it’s been working for a long time, and lots of y’allfags write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, asking me how me and CJ…do it.
And…don’t be mad, but…
I can’t exactly tell you.
I can’t lay out the extreme specifics of our relaysh on the internet, but I can talk about strategies and offer some tips on what works for us.
Maybe in a two-part series on open relationships!!
If, um, you want.
‘Cause I feel like everyone hears about this stuff, but not many folks are actually talking about it in constructive ways.
Ok? Ok for talking about fucking?
*But first! The Very Long Warning!*
*Homos, I am not a professor of queer theory.
I failed the only women’s studies class I ever took. I’m not an authority on this subject – I’m just gonna talk about my personal experience with open relationships. I may screw up and say something uneducated. Bear with me.
And let me just say: Monogamy is cool. Monogamy can be beautiful. It works well for some couples.
I ain’t bein’ judgey- it’s no better or worse than non-monogamy.
CJ and I were monogamous for years, on and off.
I’m not trying to sell an open relationship.
Like bananas (yes), it doesn’t need selling. Either you want the bananas when you go shopping or you don’t want bananas – no advertisements needed.
It’s only when you’ve never had bananas and you’re not suuuure if you’ll like bananas that there might be some discussion at the grocery store.*
So: What is non-monogamy?
Our dear friend Wikipedia sez:
Non-monogamy is a blanket term which covers several types of interpersonal relationships in which an individual forms multiple and simultaneous sexual and/or romantic bonds.
You get to have more than one sexytime or romantic friend at once.
Sounds good, right?
All of a sudden, it seems like we’re hearing about this everywhere.
More and more people are embracing non-monogamy.
Books like The Ethical Slut and Opening Up have introduced the topic to the general public, and lots of queers (trendy as usual!) were either already doin’ the open-relationship thing or first in line to try it when they heard the news.
And why not?
I mean – we’re already in non-traditional relationships.
Everyone thinks we’re freaky sex-machines anyway – why not push the boundaries a little further?
Uncle Mike is already really uncomfortable around us at Thanksgiving; we’re clearly destroying the fabric of American families with our very existence – might as well actually be having lots of filthy dirty gaysex if we’re gonna get blamed for it, anyway, right?
As non-monogamy enters the public sphere, it’s becoming less and less exotic to be in an open relationship – no one’s even surprised to hear about someone in one anymore.
Especially among lesbians.
Especially especially among younger lesbians.
Lots of us have tried it, been in one, or are in an open relationship right this second.
Because, well, everyone can see the obvious, main benefit of an open relationship:
You get. to sleep. with other people.
And still be in a secure, loving relationship with your partner.
And it’s becoming more and more socially acceptable, at least among queers, to do this.
The cons of doing the open-relationship thing are sometimes harder to see.
There’s JEALOUSY. And COMMITMENT ISSUES.
And TIME MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS.
And INSECURITY and TRUST ISSUES and SAFETY CONCERNS and…well, the list goes on.
We tend to only think of the good parts about an open relationship.
Until it explodes in our faces.
Ask any queer you meet!
Have they ever been in an unsuccessful open relationship?
The answers usually go along these lines:
Yes/it was miserable/I’m never doing that again/two of the worst years of my life/it didn’t work but I feel like it could with someone else/OMG the drama.
A lot of us have been burned before.
The bottom line is, open relationships aren’t for everybody.
In my experience: you have to really want it.
But you know what?
Doing the open thing can work.
It takes a bit (ok a shit-ton) of extra effort and lots of negotiation, but, if yer willing, it is possible to work around jealousy and have fun sleepin’ around a lil’ and learn to get through issues with your partner and not get dumped.
IF everybody is on board.
If only one person in a couple wants an open relationship, though, guess what?
…An open relationship is prolly not going to work.
Unless the other person is willing to try and be flexible and really try.
Likewise, if only one person in a couple wants to be monogamous, a monogamous relationship is probably not going to work, unless the other person is willing to try and keep a damn lid on it and really try.
Sluts, if there’s one thing I’ve learned about non-monogamy, it’s that both people have to want it and be willing to work on it.
Otherwise things go kablooie.
So! This is the intro to talking about this at all – I wanna see what you y’all have to say on the matter.
We’ll talk specifics and strategy next time, kay?
Got any feeeeeelings about open relationships, y’allfags?
Anything specific you wanna talk about?
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Krista Burton is brand-new to Chicago. An ex-Mormon from Minneapolis, she writes a blog called Effing Dykes (www.effingdykes.blogspot.com), which is about activating your lesbian gaydar. She spends most of her time staring longingly at enormous dogs, riding her shiny orange scooter around town, and trying to bake gluten-free cake that doesn’t taste like gluten-free cake. She’s a staff writer at Groupon, and loves girls, inappropriate footwear, and hip-hop songs with filthy lyrics.