Kegel Muscles

There is nothing like a vibrator. Except one of those battery-powered Noxzema face exfoliators. I know this because I’ve used one as a vibrator. They’re 15 bucks. My vagina is not too uppity to turn down a good deal.

I received my first vibrator when I was a junior in high school, a present from my older sister who was home from college and ready to proselytize her sexual awakening. At first I had to wear three pairs of underwear at once; the sensation was just too much. Then, after frequent use, it became not too much. After even more use, it became, Maybe I’ll turn this up a notch. And finally, I need a vibrator with more horsepower. The Ford Truck of sex toys. Fittingly my masturbation habit became something Henry Ford would be proud of: completely efficient. I could turn the vibrator on high and orgasm in under two minutes. Even if I was just thinking about my grocery list. It was magic.

That is up until I got a boyfriend and found out that it was unfortunately the only magic that worked anymore. Dude is a saint so he patiently tried everything under the sun, and also, kind of the sun — “I’ve read that those SAD lamps can help!” he offered once. On a few rare occasions I managed to eke one out with him — always after drinking lots and lots of alcohol. (Turns out I have the opposite of whiskey dick. I don’t have a dick, for one. And whiskey actually lets me get out of my head so I’m not thinking, “Why isn’t it working?!!” every 15 seconds.) But for the most part we fell into a pattern where we’d have sex, and then afterward he would kind bat at my boobs while I machined my way to orgasm.

I’ve heard of this happening to boys. They spend too many single years strangling their penis like it insulted their grandma, and then later they have a horribly hard time (pun intended) reaching orgasm with a woman. Once upon a time I could orgasm via all the ways one orgasms with a dude — fingers, sex, cunnilingus, idly watching True Detective. But after years of essentially power-exfoliating my lady part, I found that coming any other way required a level of concentration on par with taking the SATs. It was exhausting. Fingers paled in comparison. I barely felt a tongue. I was scared I had vibrated my nerves dead forever, because I am not a doctor and that seemed like a plausible condition to me: Dead Vagina Syndrome. Or, as the professionals surely call it, DVS. I remember being so frustrated one night I ALMOST CALLED MY MOM.

But great news: My vagina is still alive! (Please take a moment to picture it singing on top of the Alps, Sound of Music–style.) Or at least it’s not dead, according to Karen Stewart, a Los Angeles–based psychologist specializing in sex therapy. “Almost 100 percent of women can have orgasm with a vibrator. A man cannot do what a vibrator can, and there’s nothing anyone can do about that. So naturally there’s an addictive quality to it,” she says. “I’ve talked to many women who have been single for awhile and use vibrators by themselves and then have a really difficult time orgasming any other way.” Her suggestion? Put the vibrator in a drawer for a while and concentrate on being more present. Don’t expect to orgasm in a minute. No one does. (Except, of course, with a vibrator. Sigh.) Take it one day at a time. If you can’t resist grabbing your big plastic thing and going to town, try it on a lower setting even if it takes longer. Or there’s always this more palatable option: “Vibrating cock rings are amazing!” Stewart says. “That way he can participate and not feel bad.”

Two weeks ago I put my vibrator in a trash bag. (One filled with like old papers and packaging, not gross foodstuffs, in case I change my mind.) It’s tucked behind the washing machine in my laundry room, out of sight enough so that I’m not constantly tempted, but near another big vibrating machine so it doesn’t get lonely. Three days ago, I had my first non-battery-powered orgasm in a really long time. It was not exactly easy — it took about 45 minutes and an Adderall (For maximum focus!), but point is, it happened. After I came, my boyfriend took me out to dinner to celebrate the totally organic spasm of my kegel muscles.

Question: Has this ever happen to you?

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Self-Forgiveness

Have you ever noticed or felt you are stuck on something which happened in the past, and for whatever reason you can’t emotionally move beyond it.

Self-forgivesness is a process–a process which is different for everyone. But no matter how long it takes, there’s hope! Here are some steps you can take during the journey:

Become clear on your morals and values as they are right now.

The reason (According to Amy Goldenberg, Consumer Research Analyst, SurveyStud, Inc) most of us feel guilt or shame for actions done in the past is because those actions are not in line with our current morals and values. Our past wrongs can actually clue us in to what we hold important. By identifying our morals and values, we start to get a clearer picture as to “why” we’re hurting over what we’ve done, or what others did to us.

Realize that the past is the past.

This seems fairly straightforward, but when we can really wrap our head around the fact that we can’t undo the past, the past is done, those things happened, we open ourselves up to more acceptance. Increased acceptance can lead to the emotional healing we are all looking for.

Create a “re-do.”

Never underestimate the power of a “re-do”. Write down how you would have done things differently if you could go back and do it again. In doing so, we affirm that we not only learned from our past mistake, but that if we had the skills we have now, back then, we would have done things differently.

Realize you did the best you could at the time.

The way we respond depends on the skills we have, the frame of mind we’re in, and how we perceive the situation at that moment. Maybe we didn’t have as much objectivity, or acted out of survival or protection mode. Maybe we’d let stress build up, which put us at a higher risk of responding poorly. Whatever the factors, cut yourself a break. If you learn from it, it was never in vain.

Start acting in accordance with your morals and values.

The best thing you can do for yourself in order to forgive is start replacing the negative behavior and thoughts with more appropriate ones that are congruous with your morals and values. By so doing, you reaffirm to yourself that you can handle situations in the way you want to. This can lead to a sense of pride, which is a huge part of building self-esteem.

Identify your biggest regrets.

When I talk with people on the importance of  moving on from their past, it can be very overwhelming for them because they see so many regrets. It’s often helpful to categorize these things because people often only hold on to a handful of big categories/patterns. Working on patterns of behavior is often more helpful than working on individual regrets.

Tackle the big ones.

There may be some regrets that don’t seem to improve, and they’re going to require some extra work. I call it “clearing your conscience.” This means it might take bringing this regret into the room and apologizing for your past mistake.

Turn the page.

At some point, you have to accept that the past has happened and you’ve done everything in your power to amend past mistakes. It’s now time to turn the page and accept those events as part of your story. They’ve all contributed to making you who you are. Being grateful for those experiences allows you to move on and truly forgive yourself.

Cut yourself some slack.

When we learned how to ride a bike, most of us realized it would probably take a few tries before achieving perfection. New behavior and thinking patterns are no different. They’re both skills. Cut yourself some slack while you’re on a new learning curve. Realize that you’re going to make mistakes. We all do.

Question: Do you find it hard to move beyond past hurt?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Lady Whiskers

Every woman has that one humbling flaw that keeps her (somewhat) grounded and human. Some have struggly feet, others bad skin and the rest eye-watering breath, deformed thumbs or unflattering facial hair–no no no let’s call it what it is, a freak’n mustache. I said it, a mustache.

Now I’m very grateful for the genes that my parents have passed down to me. The fair-skin/facial hair struggle is real, and it’s the one thing my family line could’ve kept to themselves! My “Lady Whiskers” has caused a lot of insecurities to develop over the years that I’m just now working past.

“Why don’t you just shave it off?”

Well my friend, it’s not that simple because it grows right back with a vengeance. It’s not obnoxiously noticeable, but it’s enough for me to acknowledge every time I look into a mirror.

For those who endure this struggle, have you ever went/gone to an eyebrow wax and the lady asks do you want a lip wax too? Really. Everytime this happens I smile, and say no thank you, but in my mind I’m thinking… GZus lady, stop drawing attention to it–because the one time I actually allowed you to handle the stache, I walk out with a red and swollen upper lip.

Then theres the never ending shade on selfies, I’ve become a filter queen. I also find that I keep my hand over my mouth thinking it will keep people from noticing it. Truth is it don’t. Oh yeah, I can’t wear certain lipstick colors because they highlight my lip whiskers.

Bottomline, I’m not one to waste tons of dollars on different methods to see what sticks, so if I can find one good method that is effective and doesn’t break the bank that would be perfect!

Question: Does anyone know any methods which could help me fight these lady whiskers?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Pressure and Expectations 

As a woman I find or feel I have a lot of pressure and expectations put on me without a vote in the process.

It’s like I’m expected to get married, I’m expected to give head, I’m expected to have kids, expected to do so so many things, I’m not sure I want to do. When do I get a say in what I want to do, instead of having the pressure(s) of expectations thrust upon me.

I’m 23 soon to be 24, and you know sometimes I don’t feel like giving head, and marriage… OMG, really, I can’t freak’n pop popcorn without burning it–never less being a wife.

I just want to do what I want to do. I want to walk around in sweats with no bra and/or makeup, and watch Orange is the New Black or whatever, and not feel pressured to do anything. I want to flat out say NO, without feeling inconsiderate or sitting for hours wondering if my text response was rude. I just want to be me.

As a child women are drunkened with the “this is how you should behave,” attributes–however, I feel somewhere along the generations, someone forgot to tell/teach me/women its ok to be who you are. Its ok.

Now I’m not saying I dont want the family thing, because I do–not now, not just yet. I want to live with out feeling I got to do X,Y, and Z. I want to say I have to pee without feeling trashy. Oh another thing I want to do… I want to tell or say excuse me (within 2 seconds) to the person standing in the middle of the isle at the grocery store.

OMG OMG this may seem strange but guys do it all the time. But me, no I freak’n stand there like forever without saying anything, because I don’t want to seem rude.

But guys like my dad or brothers, man they will say excuse me, keep it moving and its done.

Question: Do you feel woman have unwanted Pressure and Expectations?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Venting…

I remember the first time I tried to describe the physical sensation of menstrual cramps to my dad. His face twisting into a horrified grimace.

Yes. Yes, it can be. And many of us deal with it every month. But unless you’re our SO or close friend, you’ll probably never know about it. Because we still manage to get sh*t done.

There are a lot of similar struggles that women experience all the time — some silly and small, some alarmingly big — that many men might not be aware of or understand. For example we’re always expected to look nice. And to look happy and have a pleasant demeanor. Seriously, sometimes we want to go outside with frizzy hair and no makeup and sweatpants and not talk to or smile at anyone. I also hate white I go to sleep on white sheets, with a white pillow, and wake up with sheets that look like a 1st grader just colored all over them… uggggghhhh.

OMG what about thinking about your safety ALL the time… Where you walk, how dark it is, where you park, who is in your general vicinity at all times. Parking at the mall? Don’t park near a van! Want to stay late studying? Better have someone walk you to your car. It’s exhausting honestly.

See guys dont have these type of thoughts and or problems.

Then you have the petty stuff i.e… painting your nails with the non-dominant hand–how about going-upstairs boobs. Sleeping face down boobs. Hello I’m going to hurt for no reason today boobs. Boob bra knot boobs. We’ve fallen out and going to do our own thing today boobs.

Don’t judge me, I’m venting…

If I happen to run a few errands or God forbid go to school or work without makeup on and I run into someone I know, I get ‘hey are you okay? You look sick.’ And then when I do wear makeup and I look all cute and presentable, I’ll hear, ‘yeah guys definitely like the natural look better.’

Then there’s the stress of an unexpected period, but then also the stress of an unexpected not-period.

Then theres shaving my kneecaps. Twenty-three years of practice and I’m still awful at it.

Finally because I don’t want to bore you with my problems, but ANYTHING and everything you do with the opposite sex can ([and] probably will at some point) be interpreted as being a tease or leading him on.

I could go on-and-on. Sorry, thanks for reading 🙂

Question: What’s something you want to vent about but for whatever reason have not let it out?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Itchy Nipples…

Have you ever been walking along, having a totally normal day, and suddenly your nipples feel itchy, it’s like you’re wearing a bra made of a 1000 nipples.

If your nipples are anything like mine, they don’t usually cause much trouble — they go along to get along, trooping around quietly in the bra until you need to unleash them for practical and/or recreational purposes — which might be why, when your nipples feel strange, it can sometimes be kind of terrifying.

That terror can easily turn into full-tilt panic: My first thoughts are ALWAYS could my itchy, dry nipples be a sign of something serious? Are these random hairs going to be here for the rest of my life? Why hast thou betrayed me, beloved headlights!

The shock of having a nipple feel weird is usually much worse than whatever’s actually going on with your nipple — because, for the most part, nipple weirdness is not a sign of a serious health problem. Anything having to do with my breasts can send me into breast cancer panic mode.

The most common nipple-related breast cancer symptoms are tenderness, dimpling, a change in skin texture on the nipple, and a suddenly inverted nipple (inverted nipples are common and harmless — a sudden inversion is the only cause for alarm.)

So what I’ve learned is that anything else that you feel: random itch, tingle, or drip — is most likely nothing to worry about.

If your nipples look or feel different than they usually do for a prolonged period of time, or if you’re just freaked out, it’s always a good idea to see a doctor. 

First of all, itchy nipples are almost never a sign of a health problem. In rare cases, itchy nipples can be a symptom of inflammatory breast cancer or Paget disease of the breast, but itching is almost never the only symptom.

Run-of-the-mill itchy nipples have more benign causes: sometimes the itchiness is created by a skin condition, like eczema, but if you’re not experiencing a rash or other symptoms, odds are that your nipples are itchy because they’ve become irritated — by the laundry detergent or soap that you use, by friction in an ill-fitting bra, or by dry weather that’s making all of your skin dry and itchy.

Itchy nipples can also be a side effect of pregnancy-related breast growth — as a pregnant woman’s breasts expand, the stretching of the skin can irritate the nipple, leading to drying, cracking, and a persistent nipple itch.

Fortunately, itchy nipples are easy to treat, for pregnant and non-pregnant folks alike — just massage some non-irritating moisturizer into your nipple, especially right after you come out of the shower. The moisture should keep your nipples calm. But no matter how itchy your nips get, don’t put calamine lotion on them — that lotion can actually dry the skin of the nipple, and make the itching worse.

Question of the day: How do you handle the itchy nipple?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

The Ex

I like designer bags but I don’t necessarily like baggage. Not the “ex” kind of baggage. At my age, it’s more likely than not that anyone I would date/end up with has baggage. It’s a term I don’t like because when you find the right guy, his baggage doesn’t seem so much like “baggage” as it does a “pretty package.”

For example, before I met the man I’m now dating, I made it perfectly clear to any man I went out with that I come as a package. If you date me, you’re also, for lack of better description, dating my kid. Meaning, you have to get along with her, she has to like you, and you almost certainly will be my second priority.

When you have a kid, it’s easier to date someone else who has a kid or even children. They usually understand if you have to bail at the last minute because your child is sick, they like children (because they already have them), and they understand why a child can turn from an angel into a sobbing heap on the floor within 10 seconds.

But what I’ve never quite understood is the baggage that is known as “the ex.” Rather, I understand it; I just don’t like to deal with it.

One of my exes had an ex-wife who acted as if she were still his wife. They had no children and it was hard for me to fathom why this woman would still want to go out of her way to decorate his place, ask him to drive her to the airport, and buy him flowers. There is nothing worse than an ex who doesn’t realize she is an ex (at least for the person dating the man/woman.)

The man I’m dating now has gorgeous, kind and sweet children. I thought God was looking down on me, finally, when I fell in love. Plus, his ex lives a 40-minute drive away, is not in my social circle, and we didn’t have any friends in common.

But of course, I was a little naïve. I recently found out that this ex is following my every move on Facebook — which is fine, but, it makes me uncomfortable, especially when exes of the man I am dating, or the men I have dated, check me out. My boyfriend and I are serious, to the point where we both would like to be included in every aspect of each other’s lives. This includes school plays (which he attended with me when my daughter was recently in one) to birthday parties. One of his children has an upcoming birthday party. As we slowly blend our families together, I don’t want there to be any drama.

My ex’s ex-wife (the one with no children) actually wanted to meet and hang out with me. My response was, “Why?” But if I do plan on being a stepmom with my new man, I do understand why I may have to meet my boyfriend’s ex-wife. Do I want to do this? No. Do I think if we can get along at least politely it will be best for the children? Absolutely. Does she have to like me? No.

But if my ex was/is dating another woman who could possibly be my daughter’s stepmother, I would for sure want to meet her, at least once, to make sure that my daughter is safe. My daughter, her safety and her happiness, will always be my first priority, just as I’m sure that’s my boyfriend’s ex-wife priority.

Question: If you have any ex-partner/parent advice… I’d really like to hear your thoughts.

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Saggy Breasts

As a 20 something I would have never thought saggy boobs represent some sort of canonistic experience for women of all ages regardless of social-economics, and or demographics. See unless you saw me naked, you would never guess I have saggy boobs. Yes I said it. I have saggy boobs.

It’s like one morning I woke up, rolled on my back and my boobs just didn’t follow with the rest of my body. I’m not kidding, when I lie down, 80 percent of my breasts fall into my armpit. It’s really cute.

At the ripe age of 23, they’re completely deflated. I thought boob sag would only come after pregnancy, but I was wrong. Gravity is a law. My body has abided.

Sometimes I wonder what I did to gravity to deserve this boob sag. Sometimes I’ll lift them up, look in the mirror and gawk at how much of my body they cover up. My upper ribs are constantly in the shadow of my under-boob.

When I hit puberty, my ta-tas were a size D. I even had stretch marks in high school because my chest was #blessed. But at around age 20, my overwhelming D-cups deflated to modest C-cups.

Another thing I noticed my boob sag is my biggest insecurity when it comes to hooking up. They look great when they’re tucked up into a bra, but once that comes off, they’re just going to flop out. It’s like opening a bag of chips only to find more air than chips.

Then there’s the gym… OMG!!! Has anyone else gone to the gym, attempted to do some crunches and all of the sudden notice half your boob is leaking out the side of your sports bra? Just me? OK.

If you have saggy boobs, sports bras work their magic by reinforcing everything, but your boobs just get flattened against your chest in the most unflattering way. They do this droopy, separation thing as you run on the treadmill. It’s just not cute.

No matter what bra cup size you have, you probably struggle to find bathing suits that fit well. I laugh when I look at string bikinis because they’re just something I’ll never be able to wear. Ever since I grew these damn things, bikini tops have been my worst enemy. Either I’m busting out of them, forming an attractive quad boob (when they spill out the top) or there’s no support whatsoever. That’s when I contemplate just avoiding beaches altogether.

My cleavage used to be difficult to cover up. Now, I can only create Victoria’s Secret-worthy cleavage when there’s a gravity-defying push-up bra involved.

So I wrote all of this to say, you are not the only woman to deal with boob sag.

Question: Have you ever experienced boob sag?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Is Barack Obama the Face of America

When you look in the mirror do you see an image staring back at you that reflects your ideal image of beauty? Take a moment to describe the ideal woman’s physical features. What color skin tone does she have? How much does she weigh? What do her eyes look like? What does she wear when she goes out on the town? How is her hair styled?

Now take another moment to figure out the answer to this question: Where did your idea of beauty come from?

Because think about it, even though Donald Trump is now President of The United States, the world still sees Barrack Obama as President–so if the woman you described as ideal does not look like the woman you see in the mirror, chances are along your life journey you were bamboozled by someone’s impression of what a woman or beauty should look like.

Now don’t be upset. In our quest to decipher our purpose and mission in life we often adopt the beliefs and expectations of those around us in order to gauge whether we are living life correctly.

Suppose you were taught at an early age that you were expected to finish high school, go to college, get married, have children and retire by age 55. Those seem like reasonable life expectations don’t they? Well, how do you know that those expectations were the right path for YOU?

Now go back to the woman you described as your ideal image of beauty. Chances are you’ve met her before and it caused you great distress. Where did you meet her? Was she the woman who stole your first boyfriend? Was she the little sister who came along and stole all of the attention away from you when you were a child? Was she the most popular girl in high school? Was she the woman all the boys drooled over as she crooned pop music on television? Was she the girl who won all the awards at school without ever trying?

The point I am making is simple. If the ideal woman you imagined does not look like you, somewhere along the line you compared yourself to another woman and felt that you fell short. Somewhere along your life journey, you decided that there was another woman in existence who had something special that you did not. Somewhere along your life path, you listened to opinions about what is right and wrong and you decided not to decide for yourself.

Question: When is the last time you said to yourself… “I look good.”

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SurveyStud: In the App Store

Single Women Thoughts…

When I write I am often focused on the emotions of a single woman living and making her professional and even sexual person known. As any true feminist knows, the emotional-clothing she wears during especially pivotal moments in her life become indivisible from the emotions related to that experience. Bottomline in all of my sartorial wisdom, I am the fictional embodiment of emotionally-driven clothing.

Cause see at some point you/we have to recognize that the many people we’ve run through, just isn’t giving us the long lasting satisfaction that we are looking for. In a society where monogamy takes a backseat to every fleeting desire, you have to ask yourself what it is that I’m actually looking for.

As Barbie’s popularity grew, she became an idol to women everywhere. As time passed with botched surgeries and the stats of bulimia and anorexia rising, people began to see that looking like Barbie was unhealthy. I would love to say that we are over trying to be carbon copies of each other or a single woman, but that would be a lie. Women are still spending money to become their favorite idols when they look in the mirror. Men have become attracted to what society tells them they should be attracted to, and in attempt to live out their youth, they are trying to capture as many of these women as possible.

Many men can argue that women are the same way. Women seek men to look a certain way, have a certain size and girth below, be financially independent and willing to splurge on their woman.

What we all fail to realize is that it is important to be yourself. Quality over Quantity. People are afraid to be themselves because we see what other people like. Even the attempt to be original isn’t original anymore. We’ve allowed society to cut funding in areas that allow our creativity to take part in who we are as individuals. We’ve allowed our music to take on similar tones in order to sell. We’ve allowed ourselves to study fields we have little interest in, in the hope that money will settle the feeling of inadequacy within.

We have forgotten that things that are good for you, are scarce. If you are looking for the perfect partner for you, you will not find him or her in everyone you sleep with. What you want to do with your life is ultimately up to you and may not be the most current trend in popular careers or majors. When someone comes into your life, that you feel has a good heart and means the best for you, you keep that person around because you never know the next time you will receive a blessing again. We are losing too much of each other and ourselves in a world that enforces looking or feeling a certain way.

I understand at times my blog demonstrates a truth time and again, hyperbolically at times but nevertheless in a manner that is innately relatable to single women. But for a second I would like for you to step back and ask yourself a single question: Am I who I want to be?

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SurveyStud: In the App Store