I'm on vacation for the next three weeks — but you won't be reading old columns while I'm away. You'll be getting a new column every week, all of them written by Dan Savage, none of them written by me.
Dan Savage is a sports writer and the assistant director of digital content for OrlandoMagic.com, and he will be answering your questions this week. Dan has covered six NBA finals and 10 NBA All-Star Games; he's appeared on CBS, ESPN, NBA TV, and First Take; and his writing has been published at ESPN.com, CBS.com, NBA.com, and OrlandoMagic.com. This is Dan's first time giving sex-and-relationship advice.
"Other sports writers often tell me they enjoyed reading my latest column," Dan Savage told me in an email, "but when they show me the article, it's one of your sex-advice columns. The joke is going to be on them this time around when it's actually my advice!"
I'm a 36-year-old bisexual female. I've been dating my nice Midwestern boyfriend for about four and a half years. Within the first few dates, I brought up nonmonogamy. I was pretty sure from past experiences that long-term monogamy wasn't going to be for me. I get bored, I like attention, and I love the chase. He was against it. I thought, okay, we have a lot of other positive stuff going for us and maybe he would reconsider in the future. I feel like I've lost a part of my sexual self — no adventures, no three-ways, I miss girls, etc. So I brought up opening up the relationship again. My thought is I could get what I need/want, and hopefully bring that excitement and spark back to our relationship. He listens to your podcasts, but he doesn't think he could handle the idea of me with someone else. I don't think I can handle the relationship as it is now, though. Are we doomed?
— A Girl Has Needs
I appreciate you having your boyfriend listen to my podcasts — oh wait, that was probably meant for the other Dan Savage. Never mind. My podcasts probably wouldn't have helped with this issue.
Your question reminds me of a topic that's currently top of mind in my profession: NBA free agency. In the basketball world, it's the time of year when teams can go after the best available prospects not under contract and offer them a deal to join their team. Organizations heavily vet these players, talking to their former teammates, coaches, and others to make sure that their values match up. There's nothing worse than being locked into a five-year guaranteed contract with a guy who doesn't fit with your franchise. Actually, on second thought, there is — getting married to a guy who doesn't share the same relationship goals and values.
If your boyfriend is someone who has no interest in open relationships, odds are he's never going to be happy in that type of situation. And if you're never going to be happy with monogamy, then you need to find someone whose values match your own. Unfortunately, some people are destined to play man-to-(wo)man, while others are more satisfied in a 2-3 zone.
I've been hooking up with a good friend for about a year. We're both single, and he lives in another state but comes to town for work every month or two, and we usually hang out and have really great sex. One of the things I've always admired about him is his eco-conscious lifestyle ... which includes showering only about once a week to save water. His BO is pretty inoffensive, but I find that most times we hook up, I get a raging UTI within a day or two. I'm wondering if his infrequent washing could be allowing bacteria to live on his junk, causing my infections. Is that possible? Do I need to have a talk with him about washing more frequently/thoroughly?
— Hurts To Pee
The simple answer is yes, HTP. It's great to have an eco-conscious lifestyle, but not at the expense of your urinary tract. If he cares about you as much as he does about the environment, then with a quick chat, he'll probably focus a little more on his personal hygiene. Especially if you explain to him that the overuse of antibiotics contributes to creating antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which can cause issues for the entire planet.