S-Etiquette: Sex before Dinner

Dear S, 

I’ve only slept with two guys. I really like this guy from school but I heard he likes girls to f**k on the first date. I’m not sure I’m ready for that. Shouldn’t I know the guy before I have sex with him? I’m not a prude but I do have standards. 

Confused Chick in College 

Dear CC,

We’re about to have an aggressive conversation.

I’m not sure what kind of men you’ve been dating [who do not enjoy sex or want sex or think about sex] but whomever these imaginary men are – please repeat after me – have NO interest in having sex with you. I’m sure you are a fantastic person with a wonderful personality but – holy christ – if these men are not giving you any indication they want to pin you to wall, rip off your cardigan and have dirty-public sex then they are not going to take you home and make sweet, sweet love to you.

I need you to understand that he wouldn’t have asked you out on a date if he didn’t actually like you. Has he screwed over someone you know personally? Or are you subscribing to idle-adolescent gossip and the scribbles on the bathroom stall door? Maybe you should just go on the date and see what happens. If he happens to be a first-date-p-grabber then you have one very big gun in your arsenal; the power to say ‘um, no thanks, please put your pants back on’ ‘please remove your penis from the popcorn bag’


You have every right to kiss him on the cheek, get into your car and drive away. Or walk away. Or get on the bus. Or slip into the taxi. Accepting a date from him does not mean you are required to have sex. Fuck, if that were true, I would be having sex with men I don’t even like, every goddamn week. I’d be the happy hooker of the lower east side.


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s-etiquette: porn watching boyfriends


Dear S, 

My boyfriend is porn-obsessed! He watches it all the time and it makes me really uncomfortable, should I be worried? The stuff he watches is really kinky and I’m worried he’s going to ask me to try some stuff out and I’m not okay with it. How should I tell him it bothers me without offending him? 



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b-etiquette: the name’s Prude. Major Prude.

roommate sex

Image from ihomeconnect.com

Dear B, 

I live with a girl who refuses to fully close her door when she has sex with her boyfriend. It wouldn’t be so bad if she was on one of the upper floors but her bedroom is right across from the bathroom, on the main floor! She doesn’t seem to care if anyone sees but it makes me really uncomfortable! 

I’ve mentioned this to her before but she says I shouldn’t be such a prude and to get over myself because it’s natural. I’m having my parents for dinner next week and I really don’t want them to see her boyfriend giving it to her from behind. 

How can I be anymore clear?! 

Disgusted in Guelph 

Dear Disgusted in Guelph,

I am currently disgusted in Toronto. And guess what. It’s not because I’m a Major Prude. (I have to salute whenever I say that. Thanks a lot, How I Met Your Mother.) It’s because what she’s doing is not just being blatantly exhibitionist. She’s violating the age-old code of roommate-dom which states, “Thou shalt not do things which thy roommate has deemed to make her feel uncomfortable.”

Ok, so maybe there is no such written code. But there is an unwritten rule that when two people live together there always has to be some sort of compromise between them so that they can continue to live on harmoniously and not start pulling each other’s hair out for leaving dirty dishes in the sink, or not taking out the recycling.

The fact is that there are going to be things about your roommate that you’re not going to like. There are things that you do that she is probably not crazy about. It’s up to you to make the decision of which issues you want to fight for and when to let sleeping dogs lie.

If I were you, this would not be one of those moments where I would let sleeping dogs lie. It’s one thing to be late occasionally when paying the cable bill; it is not okay for her to continue to do something that you are against on a moral level. Having a brutally honest conversation with her about this is the only way that anything is ever going to get changed. Don’t feel awkward just because the situation involves sex. It sounds like your roommate is the type of person who is used to getting what she wants. She would have no problem voicing her dislike about something that she was morally opposed to, like smoking in the house or having friends over until three in the morning on a weeknight. Why shouldn’t you push for a compromise the same way?

Appeal to the fact that your parents are coming over and that there are some things she probably wouldn’t do in front of her parents either. Would she go to the bathroom in front of them? Masturbate in front of them? If not, she probably wouldn’t have sex in front of them either, in which case the door can remain closed.

This girl is hiding behind name-calling to disguise the fact that she’s disrespecting you as a person. If she chooses to have the kind of no-holds-barred lifestyle that involves fornicating in front of people, that’s fine. But she has to accept the fact that there will always be people that object to such an extreme lifestyle. She can claim they’re all haters, but asking you to put up with it is rude. If she objects to closing the door every once in awhile then she’s not a good roommate or a good friend. You can tell her I said that.

Or you can just slam the door in their faces next time you notice a little nooky from the doorway. That might work too.

Love, B

Are you a major prude like B, or do you think she’s majorly wrong? Got a question you’d like to ask her? Email us at thetwentiesproject@gmail.com.

b-etiquette: the single relationship expert

Dear B, 

I know a guy who is constantly boasting about his sexual prowess while he’s out with friends but has never ACTUALLY been laid! Or had a long-term relationship! This guy is SO full of himself and goes around talking sh!t about everyone else’s relationships. And yet his overly confident attitude makes him even more unlucky with women. 

I am SO sick of him telling me how I should be with my boyfriend! How can I tell him off without offending my other friends?

Sincerely, Not Liking Your Lies

Dear Not Liking Your Lies,


Image from junglewalk.com

At some point in our lives we must learn that denial is not just a river in Egypt. (I’m sorry, I just had to go there.)   Throughout our lives we are going to meet no end of people who are in denial about something. Sometimes it will be understandable (“We’re just on a break.”) and sometimes it’s just sad (“I just need to lose ten pounds to into my size 2 jeans again!”).

The universal thing about denial, however, is that it breeds more denial. No one actually knows they’re in denial because they are so determined to squash the reality of their situation into some dark, hidden corner of their subconscious. So it’s kind of a moot point to suggest to someone in denial that they are in denial unless, of course, you’d like to enter into a really long, heated argument about how they are (or aren’t) in denial. The person in denial will always win. Why? Say it with me now.

It’s because they’re in denial.

That’s not to say your friend isn’t deserving of a wake-up call or that he won’t get one if his friends continue to be accepting of his cocky behaviour. But I’m betting that the moments you want to give him the wake-up call are usually when he’s being at his most annoying and then your “wake-up call” is going to rapidly transform into “speech-detailing-all-of-his-faults-through-a-megaphone-call”. Yes, maybe what you’re saying is something he needs to hear. More often than not a person will shut down when you go into this kind of passionate diatribe detailing their own faults. You would too. Don’t deny it.

Although it may drive you crazy, this situation sounds like it’s one of those where it’s best to do nothing. As frustrating as it is, he will never accept the truth of his situation until he’s completely ready too and until then, it is not your job to give him his much-needed wake-up call. I’m sure that you want to do right by him because he is part of your circle of friends, but unless he solicits your advice and is truthful about his problem, he’s never going to actually listen to what you have to say without getting defensive. Why not let that unfortunate task fall to that surly bartender or that bitchy teeny-bopper who’s tired of being hit on yet again?

Chances are your friends feel the same way about his constant tall-tales but none of you are ever going to be able to bring it up to his face without looking like a real jerk in front of everyone else. Ganging up on someone never works either. It’s a very real possibility that this false cockiness is just that- false- and that these stories are lies he makes up to you guys to make him seem more experienced or cooler than he actually thinks he is.

Try changing the subject whenever one of his “famous” stories comes up or try steering the conversation in another direction. It may be helpful to discreetly enlist the help of a buddy of his to help choose a topic that’s good enough to distract him. Other than that, my only advice to you is to take most of what he says is with a grain of salt: roll your eyes, groan inwardly, and move on. We can’t control other people’s behaviours- we can just control our reactions to them.

Or you can get him laid. Your choice.

Love, B

Do you have a friend that’s driving you up the wall? Or are you so lost about a situation you don’t even know where the wall is? Maybe B can steer you in the right direction, and away from a nasty accident involving walls. Lay it all out for her at thetwentiesproject@gmail.com.

b-etiquette: friends, or not friends?

Dear B, 

I’ve been having a sexual relationship with a friend but I don’t want to be his boyfriend. He has been hinting about committing for a while now and I’m not sure how to keep avoiding the issue. I don’t want the sex to end because it’s really good but I also don’t want to lose him as a friend if I abruptly end it. 

What do I do? 

Friend In Crisis

Dear Friend in Crisis,

I hate to break it to you, but if you didn’t actually want to lose this guy as a friend, you probably wouldn’t have entered into a sexual relationship with him. I know it sounds harsh, but these kinds of situations only work out until one of the people involved brings emotion into the equation. When you say that you’re friends with this person that indicates to me that you knew each other before the sexual component of your relationship began, which means you two already had certain feelings for each other that could be potentially messed up once you took things to a new level.

If this person is beginning to have romantic feelings for you, there is going to be no way you can stay friends with them at the moment. Look at the old break-up cliché: “I don’t love you anymore but I still want to be your friend.” While it’s natural for people who once were in an intimate relationship to want to remain a part of each other’s lives, it’s nearly impossible to make that happen right away because someone’s feelings have been hurt. This guy is not going to be happy about your admission and he will probably not want to be friends with you at first. Wait it out. If you give him some space and time to get over his feelings then you may have a chance of (almost) going back to the way things were.

The only way to do it though is be straight with him. It will be painful for both of you and it will hurt his feelings, but you have to tell him the truth. If you have to be blunt, be blunt. It would be far more cruel to let things go on and have his feelings for you deepen every time he sees you. Good sex is a good thing, but there are other means of having it. I’m guessing being friends with him is slightly more important.


Do you have a problem you know only B could help you with? Write to her at thetwentiesproject@gmail.com.