Advice on morals and manners.

Advice on morals and manners.

Advice on morals and manners.

Advice on manners and morals.
June 6 2002 2:29 PM

Experience Isn't Everything

Get "Dear Prudence" delivered to your inbox each week; click hereto sign up.Please send your questions for publication to prudence@slate.com. (Questions may be edited.)

Advertisement

Dear Prudence,

I'm in my early 40s and have had many bad relationships. I've recently started seeing a man I've known as a friendly acquaintance for over 15 years. He's stable, secure, funny, considerate, and genuinely wonderful to be with. I think I'm falling for him. However, I think he has had very little sexual experience and he will probably not be satisfying in bed, and I don't know how to be the teacher (too shy in that department). Although I'm not real concerned about the sex part, do you think it will hinder our relationship in the long run? And would it hurt our relationship if I brought my vibrator to bed with us, or should I just use it when he's not with me? I don't want to lose this guy, but I don't want to "fake it" in bed. Please advise.

—D

Dear D,

Sometimes the guys with minimal bedroom history can surprise you. Your new love interest might be a natural for all you know. It is, after all, doin' what comes naturally. Then again, just like some men with much experience, he may be a dud. In any case, it wouldn't be so bad if you were the teacher, informing by suggestion, as it were. It would be a safe guess that you both want the same results. Prudie would suggest that rather than have him read a how-to book, you should ... if only for hints about how to be an effective instructor. And you're kidding about bringing the vibrator to bed, right? What a neophyte does not need is battery-powered competition.

—Prudie, optimistically

Advertisement

Dear Prudence,

My dilemma is this: I'd dated a woman whom I thought was incredible. The feelings came quickly; I loved who I was when I was with her. After a short time of dating, she decided that my career and ambitions weren't to her liking, and she didn't want to develop an emotional attachment to someone with whom she wouldn't have the future she wanted. While I tried to persuade her to give me a chance, she was adamant, and we've since gone our separate ways. However ... she had neglected to tell me during the relationship (I found out afterward, though she claims she told me) that an ex-boyfriend had given her a very mild form of herpes. I'll be seeing my doctor soon about some kind of lesion on my lower lip—I don't know if this is a cold sore, a very chapped lip, or a shaving cut. How should this situation be handled? I'm feeling misled, humiliated, and hurt. I don't know if I'm just anxious and jumpy about getting the disease, or if I do have it, should she help me in some way?

—Just Plain Sore

Dear Just,

Help you how, by buying the Acyclovir? So far as Prudie knows, there is no herpes etiquette re the gift that keeps on giving. Sexually transmitted diseases are an unfortunate occupational hazard of dating. Though there have been occasional lawsuits about who gave whom herpes, this is one of those instances where the donor, shall we say, is not usually responsible for any bills incurred. Prudie will join you in hoping it's a chapped lip or a shaving cut.

—Prudie, wishfully

Advertisement

Dear Prudie,

How are you at dream interpretation? Case in point: I am a heterosexual female, and I've had two dreams about an openly gay male in my work group. The truth is, he is an intelligent, good-looking guy, but I cannot stand him. He constantly "stirs the pot" in the office, makes everybody's business his own, and basically flits around tattling and gossiping all day long. In the dreams I've had, we shared an awesome kiss in one, and in the other one, he took me on a date that was equally awesome. What is up with this??!!

—Curious

Dear Cure,

Prudie did not receive her Dream Analysis certificate, but two things seem possible. By kissing him, you are halting his tattling and gossiping ... basically shutting him up, or ... you may find the intelligent/good-looking part annoying because he does not bat for your team. It always seems a waste to straight women when some great-looking guy is looking for another great-looking guy.

—Prudie, dreamily

Advertisement

Dear Prudence,

My husband of seven years has now decided he does not love me anymore and will be moving out at the beginning of the summer. He is never home anyway, always out with his buddies, and I can't be sure he isn't cheating on me. Where does he get the gall to even suggest this type of arrangement? I am opposed to all of this; it is all one-sided ... his side. He does not want a divorce just yet but wants to remain friends. Should I wait around until he makes up his mind, or should I tell him to get out of my house?

—Irked

Dear Irk,

It sounds as though you are not asking for advice, just affirmation, so here it is. It is perfectly logical to insist on new lodging—now—along with a divorce, when a man says he doesn't love you anymore, he isn't home much, hangs with the guys, and may be flinging around. Furthermore, all these circumstances certainly give you the right to tell what's-his-name that you don't feel like being his friend and to please find another crash pad.

—Prudie, supportively