All Articles Tagged "sex"

Celibacy After Sex: Is It Ever Too Late To Start Over?

June 23rd, 2016 - By Nicole Breeden
Share to Twitter Email This

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

You don’t have to go to church to learn the rewards of celibacy. Migrate on over to your social media world and you’ll find couples like Ciara and Russell and Meagan and DeVon promoting the power of “the wait,” while showcasing their happily ever afters to their millions of followers. From afar you can’t help but to admire – but from the inside looking in, it ain’t as easy as it looks. Most celibacy stories (or the ones I know) hold the same narrative. Two people with differing pasts, come together, fall in love, and stay true to their devotion of saving sex for marriage. Though they proclaim it’s a struggle, temptation never seems to successfully sway them from their path.

For some, particularly my friends, abstinence is a foggy concept. In a sex-driven society, it’s hard to envision the benefits of holding out, especially when you’ve found Mr. Right. Before pledging celibacy, I succumbed to years of running away from the sexual restrictions I felt Christianity had on me. Run as far as I might, guilt was always trailing one step behind. It was like a nagging mother screaming at me to do right, when I clearly wanted to do wrong. I had relations and relationships that didn’t survive due to this guilt, and it continued to follow me right on into my current relationship.

I entered this relationship with the same sexual momentum and freedom, only to consistently cry myself to sleep at night. Though I tried to disguise it, I couldn’t help but feel like I was living a double life — glorifying God by day but battling the devil by night. When I confessed this to my boyfriend, he comforted my internal battles but didn’t quite understand them. He was re-establishing his own relationship with God, starting to develop a healthy prayer life and become more active in church, so I didn’t want to lay any additional pressures on him. It was important that I allowed him to grow on his own terms, even if it required me to silently suffer. Many open conversations and prayers led up to what I call, Revelation Day. One early morning at work, distracted by my spirit, I called him.

“Listen Damion, I love you and you know that but either we both work on refraining from sex, or I have to be okay with letting you go,” were the exact words that came tumbling boldly out of my mouth.

Immediately, post ultimatum, I was set free and no longer swallowed whole in fear – that crippling fear of potentially losing someone you love. After just seven months together, I questioned and prayed for my boyfriend to one day be open to this drastic lifestyle change. More than anything, I wanted this for us, and to plant our feet on solid ground. After prior attempts at taking relationships into my own hands, it was time to one in the hands of God. It was time for me to start trying to take my Christianity seriously with the man that my soul grew to love.

On the other end of that phone call, I held my breathe. I was certain that his response would only ache and break me deeper, though I was prepared. This wasn’t the first time I’ve hinted at halting our sex life, but it was the very first time that I meant it.

“I’ve been praying about this, and Nikki… I’m ready,” he responded. Those words. Those freaking words. See, that’s the thing about those storybook celibacy stories – God can shift your relationship at any time. When I thought my relationship could be potentially tainted and “unequally yoked,” God moved us to the next level together. We just don’t hear enough about the relationships that start fresh mid-way; the ones who have already dabbled in sexual sin but together make a beautiful sacrifice for their faith; or even the relationships that occasionally backslide but are committed to overcoming.

To abruptly shift gears and set a new tone in a relationship is an obstacle that requires a higher level of faith and discipline that a year later, we still occasionally struggle with. To be honest, we’ve messed up a few times over the course of our commitment. What keeps us aiming to get it right is our belief in God’s forgiveness, love and mercy. I no longer condemn myself for my mistakes. I just choose not to, but I’m not settling in them either.

My story hasn’t ended yet and I don’t know where this road will take us. It’s possible that temptation can one day consume us (again), but it’s also possible that I can be happily married a year from now having successfully fulfilled our commitment to God. There’s power in trying no matter the hiccups. What I’ve learned from my experience is that it’s never too late to start over, pick up the pieces or redirect the path of your relationship. Never.

 

 

Fewer Partners Means More Divorce? Interesting Things To Know About Your Number

June 22nd, 2016 - By Meg Butler
Share to Twitter Email This

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Serious question: how do you feel about your number? Do you keep the real digit to yourself or does your BFF know too? Have you told your significant other the real truth or the number you arrive at when you divide by two? And how do you feel about someone after they’ve told you theirs?

Well, whether you think your number is big or small, share it or take it to your grave, you’re not alone. We’ve researched everything there is to know about your number and found out what most of us already guessed: some of us lie about it, some of us are proud of it, and other people judge you for it.

We also found out some things we never would have guessed. Like how your number affects your marriage prospects, and how it isn’t the only thing that can put your sexual health at risk!

You Can Now Order Birth Control Through Your Phone Without Judgement From Your Doctor

June 22nd, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
Share to Twitter Email This

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Birth control has always been a controversial subject from the bedroom to the Supreme Court. And in recent years, the contraceptive has become an elusive source of woman’s empowerment because of the recent closings of major clinics in inner-city and rural areas alike. But a new technological breakthrough might finally cut through all the red tape women have been been backed up against for years.

Cosmopolitan reports there are now six options for women to receive birth control simply by a visit to their phone’s app store. The outlet notes Planned Parenthood even allows patients to receive a UTI consultation with a doctor over a video call, which is virtually unprecedented. “Each app works a bit differently, but all operate so that women can answer questions about their health either on an online form or over a video, have their information reviewed by a physician, and then pick up birth control pills from the pharmacist or get them in the mail,” Cosmo details.

“At first, I didn’t believe it,” Susan Hashem shared with The New York Times regarding the birth control apps. Hashem, who wanted to restart birth control pills without missing work for a doctor’s appointment found the app Lemonaid but had her suspicions. She thought it was a scam until a doctor contacted her via the app. In her description to The New York Times, Hashem revealed that for $15, a doctor will review a woman’s medical information and then proceed to send a pill prescription for her to a local pharmacy. The morning after Hashem was contacted by a physician, she got three months’ worth of pills at her local pharmacy.

Although this new method may not be conventional, many women and teenagers are revealing that using these apps saves them from judgement from their doctors, parents and even siblings, not to mention prevents unwanted pregnancies. The New York Times claims 40 percent of pregnancies occur because of a lack of access or the red tape women must push through in order to acquire contraceptives. Doctor’s visit can also become costly and time-consuming for women whose jobs don’t allow them the flexibility or income to properly tend to their health needs.

No matter what age or side of the spectrum a woman is on, ability to take the reigns when it comes to her reproductive health is an empowering win-win.

Learn more about what birth control app might work best for you here.

Are These Foods Killing Your Sex Drive?

June 21st, 2016 - By Meg Butler
Share to Twitter Email This

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

We all know that food can be an aphrodisiac that gets people in the mood. Chocolate, strawberries, and whipped cream have a long history of getting the party started in the bedroom. But some foods are not so sensual, and we’re not just referring to the ones that give you garlic breath and bad gas late at night.

Some foods actually lower your sex drive. Have them before a dinner date and you might find yourself less excited about those moves he’s trying to make on you. Eat them all of the time in a long-term relationship, and you might find that your favorite snack could be the reason you and your partner don’t get as close as you used to when the lights go out.

If you want to give your libido a boost, it may be time to cut these foods out of your diet for the time being, or at least eat less of them.

Did You Consummate Your Marriage The Night Of The Wedding?

June 20th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
Share to Twitter Email This

Wedding Day

Image Source: Shutterstock

Sex happening on your wedding night may be expected from your partner, friends, and parents (if they’re that pressed to babysit nine months later). But does it really go down in the bedroom after you’ve celebrated your foray into marriage for hours?

Probably not.

According to research conducted by lingerie company Bluebella, only 48 percent of the 1,000 couples they surveyed had sex on their wedding night. Fifty-two percent of the women who were surveyed revealed they were exhausted after the reception ended or too drunk to perform any sexual activity. Others shared they were too busy enjoying their wedding festivities which made them delay consummating their marriage, while a handful of people waited a day or two to make their marriage “official.”

The study also noted that only “84 percent of people were happy with their post-wedding sex” even if it didn’t happen directly on their wedding night. “Unfortunately, weddings are not great foreplay. They’re joyous occasions, of course, but they’re rife with emotion, stress, and anxiety. Most couples end up getting drunk and eating large meals. You’re dancing for hours in uncomfortable clothing and shoes. You’re lucky to make it back to the hotel room in one piece,” sex therapist Vanessa Marin rightfully stated.

Emily Bendell, founder of Bluebella who commissioned the survey, also stated “it’s good to see that so many couples are saying ‘I don’t’ to wedding night sex. Couples are under so much pressure these days to have a ‘perfect day’ that it is refreshing that so many are defying expected norms and doing exactly what they want. If that means, saving the ‘wedding night’ until they can really enjoy it, then why not?”

Marin suggests couples communicate about what their expectations are on their wedding night, even if it seems like a no-brainer. However if  a couple believes they must consummate their marriage on the same day, Marin suggests they have sex the morning of their wedding day.

But if that’s too unconventional for you, the sex therapist advises you don’t overeat or excessively drink throughout your wedding day because those vices won’t lead to passionate lovemaking.

h/t Glamour

Travel Trials: I Hate Traveling With My Best Friend Because She’s A Groupie

June 17th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
Share to Twitter Email This

Half Of Your "Friends" Don't Consider You A Friend

Corbis

(As relayed by Lauren R.D. Fox based on a culmination of experiences)

My best friend Leah and I have traveled across the globe with one another for years, but the older I get, the more tired I grow of her sorority girl ways. Wherever we go, she believes she must act like a groupie in order to get things for free, even though she can afford them.

Leah’s also married with kids, so her behavior makes me feel like I’m a willing participant in her shady endeavors and then I feel guilty whenever I spend time her beautiful family.

During our last trip to carnival in Trinidad, Leah hooked up with multiple Soca artists so we she could enjoy the VIP section in the parties we already paid hundreds of U.S. dollars for. Without me knowing, she promised my ex-party promoter boyfriend that I would sleep with him again if we could get free tickets to a reggae concert that we could easily have paid for. Don’t get me wrong, the discounts helped our pockets, but I’m not down with trading sexual favors for anything, especially extracurricular activities I can pay for myself.

Recently, Leah asked if I wanted to travel to Cuba with her but after our experience in Colombia, where she befriended two shady men and disappeared for two days, I want to pass on the trip. But should I tell Leah why and that her risky traveling behavior needs to stop?

Ready To Rock The Boat? This Adult-Only Cruise Will Blow Your Mind

June 13th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
Share to Twitter Email This

Adult-Only Cruise

Shutterstock

If you’re ready to turn up the heat in your relationship, book a trip on the Desire Cruise! Created for couples-only, the cruise provides travelers  with the option to go nude aboard ship and partake in frisky ice-breakers.

Setting sail September 26 through October 3 of 2017, the Desire Cruise will whirl around the Mediterranean Sea starting from the Italian city of Venice and will feature private playrooms, adult entertainment, sensual staterooms, and an aphrodisiac culinary experience.

When asked how the Desire Cruise differs from any other sailing experience, Rodrigo de la Pena, the CEO of the Original Group (who formulated the idea for the cruise) told  The Travel Pulse:

“We have carefully selected this amazing ship and this exotic route to enable us to provide our passengers the opportunity to live a high-end, sensual yet spicy experience in a luxurious and secure environment, where they will receive top quality service and visit paradisiac sites. We’re thrilled to bring to the sea our more than 30 years of experience in creating the perfect sensual atmosphere for adults, and we have no doubt that the Desire Cruise experience will be life-changing for our passengers and will become THE sensual way to get away!”

The Desire Cruise will make port stops at the following cities: Bologna, Italy; Split, Croatia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Zadar, Croatia, Koper, Slovenia and an overnight stay in Venice.

To learn more about this steamy cruise, visit OriginalCruises.com. Would you go on a nude adult voyage?

Is There A Link Between Your Sexual Number And Divorce?

June 10th, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
Share to Twitter Email This

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

New research from the University of Utah suggests that there is a potential link between a woman’s sexual number and the possibility that she will experience divorce; however, it’s not what you think.

While the study did find that women who married as virgins are most likely to still be married five years from their wedding day, researchers made similar findings when it came to women who had three to nine partners before saying “I do.” However, there was a sharp contrast between brides who had zero to one premarital sex partner and those who had two. Brides who only had two premarital sex partners the second most likely group to end up divorced.

“In short, if you’re going to have comparisons to your [future] husband, it’s best to have more than one,” explained Nicholas H. Wolfinger, University of Utah department of family and consumer studies professor.

The study also found that women who had 10 more partners were the most likely to end their marriages.

“This is the result most readers of this brief expected: A lot of partners mean a lot of baggage, which makes a stable marriage less tenable. It’s also entirely likely that the correlation is spurious, the product of certain personal characteristics,” Wolfinger wrote.

Institute for Family Studies/NSFG, 2002-2013

Institute for Family Studies/NSFG, 2002-2013

Wolfinger set out to explore the developing relationship between premarital sex and divorce over the years. To do so, he reviewed results from the CDC’s National Survey of Family Growth conducted between the 1970s and the 2010s. As for why the premarital sex habits of men were not included in the study, Wolfinger had this to say:

“Unfortunately, the NSFG doesn’t have full data on men’s premarital sexual behavior and in any event they recall their own marital histories less reliably than do women.”

H/t Komo News

Check out our newest series Curls Run The World featuring poet, Aja Monet!

10 Places You Should Never Have Sex During The Summer

June 7th, 2016 - By Meg Butler
Share to Twitter Email This
sex this summer

Image Source: Shutterstock

It’s summertime, the sun is out, the weather is warm and we’re all half-dressed. No wonder people feel more of an urge to get horizontal during this season.

To make things even more tempting, there are a ton of exciting places that look perfect for getting adventurous. But it’s not always a good idea to get busy during a hot day at the pool. Some places that look great for having a little bit of summer fun aren’t exactly safe.

If you’re like me and you prefer to know all the details before you do something risky, you’ll want to read up. Some of these summer sex locations come with big consequences. From icky infections to possible jail time, these potential hiccups might make you decide the sex isn’t worth it.

Serious Question: Do Men Really Know When They Want To Be In A Relationship?

June 3rd, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
Share to Twitter Email This

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

My friend Shay recently reconnected with her high school classmate Ron and found out he is extremely attracted to her. Shay never suspected that there would be a magnetic pull between them because Ron didn’t exude the physical qualities she looked for in a man and she believed he was only attracted to white women. Alas, Ron confessed how he felt a la DM in January, and since then the two have been in touch but it appears their virtual attachment will only remain and become a figment of their imaginations.

Since high school, Ron has lost weight and gained an obscene amount of confidence that has filled his energy with arrogance. Shay told me that the majority of their conversations are sexual, and when she asked Ron what he is looking for in a partner, he said he wasn’t even interested in having a relationship. After learning that news, Shay thought it would be best to keep her distance, though she occasionally kept in touch to be updated on the progress of Ron’s graduate school applications.

Although Ron seemed like a nice guy (when he wanted to be), Shay has been in multiple relationships that were non-committal and was tired of the pain they’ve caused her. By making more practical decisions, Shay believes she’ll find the right man and relationship for her. But Ron thinks otherwise; despite knowing that they’re focused on different paths, he continues to push for them to see each other and (hopefully) knock boots. And Shay continuously denies him the opportunity.

A mutual friend believes Shay should stop rejecting Ron and at least go on a date with him because, according to her, men never know when they want to be in relationship. This friend also asserts if Shay keeps rejecting men who make sexual advances toward her, she’ll be left empty handed.

Shay’s big sister and I, on the other hand, don’t think it’s wise to want a relationship and knowingly entertain someone who doesn’t—in the end you may sell yourself short. And while there are couples who’ve become exclusive after casually hooking up, that’s a gamble most rather not bet on. After all, when a man tells who he is, you should believe it, right? Or is Shay’s other friend who believes men simply don’t know when they want to be in a relationship right? Is it our job to convince them what they really want? Or is that a recipe for disaster?