By Ben Henry @NotAgainBen | Photo © www.flickr.com/gazeronly


I’ve been writing for FS for a little while now and out of all of the articles I’ve written, THIS is the one that’s closest to my stone heart. We’re all guilty of picking out the guy whose dick on their head is bigger than the one in their pants. Not to worry, I may only be 21 but I could take a gold medal for this exact behaviour. 

WHAT IS WRONG WITH US? Why do we incessantly go for the wrong guy? I have a vague theory on this, so stay with me. We’re all a bunch of optimists. At heart, whether you’re an ice queen or Sally the Slut Bunny, everybody has hope. You know when your friend is telling you for the hundredth time how much of an insensitive jockstrap his boyfriend is, but still hasn’t left him even though they’re clearly so miserable? It’s because they have this vision of what the relationship could be like.

They’re wiping the shit from the glasses to find the rose tint because they believe if they can just get past this stage, everything will be hunky dory. Now let me fill you in on a little secret. You probably do this too. It’s only recently, after the last guy took a shit on my optimistic expectations, that I realised – holy mother of Mary I had become that person. We can never see it when we’re in that situation. And why? Take it back full circle boys – because we’re so bloody optimistic. 

But never fret because I, as your little sister (I’m probably too young to be your aunt) have come up with six ways to weed out the wankers...

We want the same things, right?

The golden rule which is too often ignored. There is no shame in asking the man you’re dating what he wants out of the situation. Too many men, myself included, clam up because they fear they won’t like what they hear. Believe me, if he wants a pound cake rather than a wedding cake, don’t stick around thinking you’re going to change his mind. If you’re both on different pages, put that book back on the shelf.

M.I.A. on Saturday, spoon buddy come Sunday

If you’re looking for a relationship in particular, this is one way to tell he’s not the man for you. We all have social lives, that much is inevitable. But if he ignores you on Saturday night, then wants your undivided attention on Sunday? Let me tell you what he’s trying to say – I didn’t get laid last night, so please come over. 

He ain’t no porn star...

Some people just aren’t meant to sleep together. You can never quite get that rhythm, he only finishes himself off, he just lays there like a dead pigeon – whatever the reason, your bedroom compatibility can sometimes just be a bit off. If you’re not compatible in the bedroom, at least acknowledge what sacrifice you’re making before it’s too late and you’re nine years down the line with penetration but a distant memory (may Lance from Cucumber forever rest in virginal peace).

Is that a blush or are you just embarrassed to see me...

This might seem self-explanatory, but if he embarrasses you in public it’s clearly not going to work. I’m guilty of this sin. If you’re embarrassed to be seen in public with him because he’s too old/young/dresses badly/clicks his fingers at passing waiters, then address that issue or get the hell out of Dodge. 

 The theory of HE’S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU

Seriously, if you’ve never read this book or at least seen the film, get yourself a copy because it will change your life. I know what you’re all thinking – I will never be that person but let me summarise: If he’s not texting you; if he’s not taking the next step; if he only wants to see you Sunday afternoon but not Saturday night – HE’S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU. And don’t sit there saying he’s not texting you because he’s always working or he’s just really busy. Just stop. YOU ARE NOT THE EXCEPTION, YOU ARE THE RULE. 

Too much sacrifice

This is arguably the most important rule because it somehow relates to every one before. Dating and relationships are about sacrifice. I hate to pop your cherries (giggle giggle snort), but you will never find a man that is perfect. A man only becomes perfect when you can look past his flaws. In some cases, the sacrifice you have to make is too big – whether that be distance, his work schedule, his inability to read. Know what works for you and don’t settle for anything less.  


HIV AND YOUR RELATIONSHIP

A recent study in America suggests that most gay men who become HIV-positive get it from their boyfriend, someone they are dating or regular sex partner. Many people feel that being in a relationship will protect them from STIs and HIV. Unfortunately, people cheat. Some will use condoms and some won’t when they cheat. Many gay men also don’t test for HIV when entering a new relationship. After a month or two they stop using condoms and pass on HIV without knowing it.

You can’t stop someone from cheating but if you are having sex with someone who is not your boyfriend it’s best you use condoms. Also test for HIV and other STIs regularly – especially if you are starting a new relationship.

We at FS have heard many stories about people who think they are in monogamous relationships only to find that their boyfriend has passed on HIV to them. If you are in or want an open relationship then you need to set ground rules around safer sex with different partners. 

RULES FOR AN OPEN RELATIONSHIP

Once you’ve agreed in principle that opening your relationship to other partners is a change you want, do not rush into it.

1 – Take baby steps to see how things go before you take the plunge. Go out to a bar or club, or open up a dating app together and talk about the men you are attracted to and why. At least the first time or two that you do this, make an agreement not to actively cruise anyone or take anyone home.

2 – Once you decide that you are ready to officially open the relationship do so initially on a trial basis for a few weeks only.

3 - Some couples find it an enormous turn on to hear about their partner’s outside sexual experiences. Other couples while accepting that each will play separately, have no desire at all to hear the gory details.

4 - After a predeterminded amount of time, sit down and honestly share with each other how you feel about the arrangement since having made this change.

5 – It may become clear that, no matter what rules you have agreed upon, it is not a viable option. Or you might find that you have to revisit and fine tune some of the rules, or that the arrangement is working fine and enhancing the way you both feel about each other. 

6 – Prepare for jealousy. Some men think they will be fine with opening their relationship but ultimately it can destroy one too. Many men are completley fine with their partner having sex with another man but others may become jealous and hold it in. If you are the jealous type then an open relationship may not be for you.

7 – Make sure both of you get regular check ups for HIV and STIs. You may be using condoms all the time but your partner may not. Getting regular check ups at tyour GUM clinic will put your mind at ease and if one of you does pick up an STI you can get it treated. Remember it takes roughly about 10 days for an STI to show up in tests. HIV can take four weeks. 


For more information on sex, sexual health and STIs, visit www.gmfa.org.uk/sex

To find your nearest GUM clinic , visit www.gmfa.org.uk/clinics


This article was taken from FS #147: CHEMSEX EXPOSED


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