Why I Swipe Right for Divorced

Divorcées may not all know exactly what they want, but they have a much better idea of what they don’t want.

“Never married,” two of my least favorite words, whether they’re apart or together. And yet, they can be found at the top of probably over half of the profiles I come across when I’m online dating. Why is “never married” such a selling point? Am I supposed to take this statement to mean you’re unscathed, that you have no baggage? Well, I’m not buying it, and for me, it’s less a selling point and more a reason for me to swipe left.

The first thing I did after getting out of my three year monogamous relationship was hop on all the dating sites and apps, making myself a bunch of clever, witty profiles with WAY more written words than any interested party would ever desire to read. And it worked! I went on date after date. It became my new favorite hobby. I started telling people I was a professional dater. Men, women, couples, and everyone in between, I was dating them all and having a blast! I think the only reason I was able to have so much fun going on terrible date after terrible date was because I wasn’t looking for love or anything remotely resembling it. This is also the reason I considered everyone as an option, even those with “divorced” in their profiles. Since beginning this open-policy dating journey, I’ve found one common thread that surprised even me: the only single people I really enjoy in the dating world have gone through a divorce.

I realize that this sounds at the very least a bit strange, and to some completely off the mark. The way most see it, a divorced person who is dating is trying to jump into something that they failed so miserably at that courts had to get involved. This is true, but here’s the kicker, everyone who is good at anything has failed at it. Think about it, athletes practice endlessly for years and years before becoming professionals. A stand up comedian has to bomb a joke to realize how to rewrite it into something people laugh at. And how many times do babies fall on their faces before taking more than two steps in a row? A lot, and if you don’t trust me on that one, there’s plenty of evidence on Youtube. My point is practice makes perfect. And a divorced person is basically ready for Carnegie Hall.

I’m honestly more excited to hear someone has divorced than I am to hear someone has gotten married. This isn’t because of some sick fetish of enjoying people’s pain, although those baby falling vids can be hilarious. It’s because I know that someone who’s divorced has typically learned a lot about who they are and who they want to be. Divorcées are not only people who are intelligent enough to recognize that something needed to end, but were also brave enough to have let, or even make, that end happen. But there are more aspects to a divorcées personality besides bravery and intelligence that make them ideal candidates.

The recently divorced typically have more insight and better communication skills. This is because many who have called it quits went through counseling before doing so. Believe it or not, even when counseling doesn’t help the current relationship, it can really help future ones. Therapy can teach a lot about how someone is communicating, or not communicating. By seeing a relationship through someone else’s eyes, a person can realize they have needs that aren’t being met, and can also discover that their partner has needs they haven’t been meeting. What’s more, a lot of people discover that this is why they’re arguing, rather than leaving their nail clippings on the floor. Counseling can provide clues into how to be better in the future, whether it’s with their current partner or future ones.

Divorcées may not all know exactly what they want, but they have a much better idea of what they don’t want. I’ve dated a lot of people who were on a seemingly endless path to nowhere, perhaps because in the past I’ve dated a lot of comics. But there are a lot of people out there, besides comics, who have no idea what they truly desire out of a partner, a career, or even life. Divorced people don’t necessarily all have a clear answer when asked what they want, but they know at least one thing that didn’t work for them in the past, and many recognize how to avoid this in the future. This means that if they’re dating you, it’s probably because you do things differently than their ex (unless, of course, they’re a masochist who loves repeating negative patterns).

There’s also a maturity that comes from someone who was once legally bound to another. Chances are they shared finances, maybe even purchased a home with someone else. No matter how entwined their assets became, they’ve at the very least had some experience with “what’s mine is yours.” This is a huge step up from the eternally single dudes and gals I was used to dating, the type who haven’t committed to anything more than how much ketchup to put on a burger.

And finally, divorce can be quite humbling. There’s a certain cockiness to the single person that a divorced person often loses along the way. They know they’re imperfect. In fact, many of them have had these imperfections pointed out a bit too much so go easy on ‘em, huh? Even those who honestly believe their relationship failed solely because of the other person involved still know it failed, and live with the knowledge that even they couldn’t save it.

So I suggest the next time you see “divorced” in a profile, you give them a chance. And if you’re divorced, be proud that you made a choice that you’re probably happier and healthier for! Wear it like a badge of honor, because there are people out there, including myself, who will always pass up the “never married” for the more seasoned divorcées.

I’m a Unicorn… I Date Couples

I like to call myself a sexual socialist, meaning that everyone must have equal fun otherwise, I just can’t have a good time.

I’m what’s referred to in the dating world as a “unicorn.” My boyfriend is the male version of this, and because there’s not really a phrase for the male version, I came up with one. I call him a “Centaur.” You’re welcome. Unicorn was a term that originally came with a bit of a negative connotation. It was meant to mean someone who basically catered to the whims of a couple without expecting anything in return. While that can be one aspect of being a unicorn, I like to think the term has evolved a bit since its inception. Basically, I take it to mean someone who is into pretty much anything sexually without becoming emotionally involved. Because females who possess these qualities are so rare, they are thought of to be unicorns. I wear the Unicorn term proudly, though I think it’s a bit of an innocent-sounding moniker for something that basically means, “big ol’ slut.”

As a Unicorn, a large part of my intimate life includes dating couples. Dating a couple can be tricky territory, but it just so happens to be one of my favorite hobbies. I’ve been doing it for a while now and I’ve come to find there are some helpful hints that I have for beginners as well as those questioning whether or not it’s right for them. Here’s what I’ve found in my journey thus far.

First, let me start off by saying that this is not Polyamory. Polyamory involves emotion as well as a physical connection. I’m all about the physical! I currently have a partner who fulfills most of my needs, particularly my emotional ones, however, he has a penis, which leaves my sexual needs a bit unfulfilled. I’m about 45% lesbian, am super into transgendered folks, and I also like more than one partner quite often in the boudoir. He’s only one man with one penis, which is great because anything else might be overwhelming and could even get strange, however, we both know I need more, and he needs more too. This, so far, has been a perfect arrangement for the two of us because we have the freedom to fool around with whomever we want, and often for me that means couples!

Let’s see, how to describe dating a couple…well…it’s like being the fun aunt (stay with me on this one). When you come into a couple arrangement, you get the best parts of the relationship without all the drama and emotional involvement. You also get to have sex with at least two people at the same time! Cha ching!

The first trick is how to find a couple? Approaching one person is tough enough; can you imagine being rejected by two people at once?

“Hey, you’re pretty cute. Wait, why is your girlfriend mad at me?
No, I want both of you! Why are you walking away?!”

How an Open Relationship Can Possibly Work

None of this is meant to be a guide for you personally, although take it as such if you find it to be useful.

My current partner and I got into our relationship very soon after we had both ended monogamous relationships. I met him a week to the day after my previous partner had moved out of our apartment, and he was ten months out of a marriage. Needless to say we weren’t interested in striking up anything super serious. However, after a while, we ended up falling pretty hard for each other and realized that we were in fact, accidental or not, a “couple.” This struck a chord of panic in both of us. How were we going to hang on to our freedom if we jump back into being in love? But we have managed to keep that freedom alive and well to this very day. This fact gets a log of questions from a lot of people, mostly: how is a couple a couple if they’re to remain free?

I had been dating many couples and individuals that were parts of couples in my post-breakup escapades, and realized that it just might be a perfect set up for someone like me. Every monogamous relationship I’d been in had ended because of my wanderlust. There were other issues, of course, but the curiosity of what I might be missing was the consistent straw that broke the camel’s back; every camel, every time. So after a bit of discussion, my partner, we’ll call him “Aaron,” and I decided that if we were a couple, we would remain “open.” We would make no promises of commitment, as neither one of us had ever been a fan of such concepts, and we would be free to date whoever, whenever. Now that we’ve been together for over a year, some rules have come into play, but we retain our general freedom. For us, it works, and it works great. But it’s not for everyone. Here are some of the reasons that I think we’ve had success.

  • We are communicative. Like, overly so. I’m not just talking, “how was your day, dear?” I mean we spell things out crystal clear and try to do so before a problem can even arise. He was a counselor for about fifteen years and I’ve been in and out of therapy since I was eight. We know how to talk. We even go so far as letting each other see our threads, be they in Tinder, Kik or texts. If he’s going on a date, I know with whom, what they look like, where they’re going, and anything else I might be curious about. Now this is optional. There are times I don’t want to see what he’s been texting with people, or know what they look like. For some reason this is especially true when he’s going out with a straight girl. I think because if there’s no chance of my involvement, I just lose interest. However the where and when is not optional. This is a safety concern, as everyone should check in with someone who cares about them before they meet with a perfect stranger. Rather than me letting a girlfriend or my mom know, I tell my partner. That way if I disappear, he can at least lead the cops to the person’s Tinder account.

Alien Encounter (AKA: A Non-Monogamist Goes to a Wedding)

“’Til death do us part,” has always been replaced in my mind with, “’Til next Tuesday, then…we’ll see.”

When I was a child, I used to play house. Like most children, I would mimic what I grew up with, so, of course, I was often a single mother. I did have a healthy example of a relationship through my grandparents who to this are completely and madly in love. While I realize that high levels of commitment are possible, I tend to find them improbable, and have never desired them in my own life. I haven’t entertained the concept of marriage or long-term monogamy since back in the days of cabbage patch kids when I would receive pretend phone calls from a pretend absentee husband (who was always named after the boy I had a current crush on) telling me he’d be late again and to go ahead and start pretend dinner without him.

In my more recent romantic endeavors, which are slightly more real, I still never pretend to say forever. I’m the kind of person who changes so much from day to day, let alone year to year, that I think it’s unfair to make such a promise when you know it can’t be kept. I believe that marriage is great for some people, but fewer than we’re willing to admit, and definitely not me. “’Til death do us part,” has always been replaced in my mind with, “’Til next Tuesday, then…we’ll see.” So the thought of weddings seemed as make-believe as the phone calls I was receiving from Scott when I was seven years old in my playroom kitchen.

I’ve been lucky enough to have a lot of queer friends, who up until recently didn’t even have the legal right to exchange vows, in addition to a lot of nomadic wanderers like myself who are equally either against or afraid of commitment. Those I know who are married were already in their matrimonial state when I found them, and lucky for me, I’ve never had to buy a dress just to watch them prove their love for one another. This luck has lasted for about fifteen years, but came to an abrupt end this last winter.

My current partner, like so many others, has a family. And his family, also like so many others, likes to get together around the holidays. His cousin happened to plan her wedding on January 2 in Florida. A strange date to me, but who am I to judge? This date happened to be a great way to ensure that everyone’s holidays revolve around a one special bride. Because it’s really the only time of year his family sees him, he was guilted into attending this silliness. Now, I’m not big on holidays, but I love New Years Eve. I also love trips to Florida, hotel sex, and free cake. I was promised all of these if I were to accompany him on this journey. So I went. And I discovered a few things, including but not limited to: weddings are weird.

The first thing I learned was that weddings have websites. As if the bride and groom are comedians trying to get road gigs, they’ve got an “about” page, a bio, and a schedule of events. Upon visiting their dot com, I discovered many things about the bride and groom. Apparently the bride was romantically sleeping off a headache before she came out of the bedroom. That’s when the groom got down on one knee! They like each other because they both like board games. Amazing that two people with such distinct similarities could ever have found each other. The schedule of events page at one point actually read, “the bride and groom will then go to their room, and be in there for approximately a half hour, before coming down to the reception…” Did they just tell us they were gonna fuck?! I’m sorry. “Consummate?” And a half hour? I can’t tell if they’re joking.

Before the ceremony

So we drive from California to Daytona where we meet his family with the usual, “hey how are ya, nice to meet ya, please don’t think of me as your next daughter-in-law…” greetings. Oh, did I mention I hadn’t met his parents yet? Yeah, so that happens. It’s fine. When you’re in a place surrounded by alligators, your partner’s parents don’t seem so bad.

The next day is the big event. Until now the only weddings I’d ever attended were Catholic, so I’m expecting a long ceremony including a full mass and no kiss at the end. I’m wrong. I’ve already had much of the hotel sex I’d been promised so I’m in a fairly good mood. It also helps that the wedding was not at a church, but rather held on a large patio at a hotel with a nicer pool than ours, making me wish I’d worn my swimsuit under my dress.

The ceremony

As soon as we get there, I feel as though I’m being sized-up by the entire family. I wish I’d brought a sign to wear around my neck that reads, “I’m not trying to join. I’m also not the reason he got divorced.” But I hear signs are out of fashion for weddings these days. In an attempt to keep it cool and casual, I stuff my face with hors d’oeuvres. I look around and there doesn’t appear to be any free cake just yet. Then I remember from the few weddings I’ve been to that the cake comes later. I decide I can wait, but not long.

Everyone eventually starts to head over to the chairs, set up in two separate columns, as if to say, “we like each other but we’re not family YET.” All the guests are asked to grab a rock from a basket. I think my question, “are we going to stone the bride?” is a fair one at this point. We take our seats and I learn something else about weddings: they have programs. Great, I love plays! I look for the bride’s headshot and bio with a blurb about how she’s been doing off-Broadway projects for so long and she’s super grateful to join the touring cast of RENT. It’s not there. But a schedule is, which is nice because I’m able to treat it like a countdown to cake.

The music begins and I can’t help but be distracted by a couple making out on the beach. They look like they’re really going for it, and I don’t understand why we’re all looking back at a bunch of girls in bad dresses walking awkwardly down an aisle when sexy fun times are happening right in front of us. The bride is wearing white, adding to the ever-growing list of things I don’t understand. I mean, we all read the website, right? They were living together. Am I being presumptuous when I say she’s probably not a virgin anymore? Maybe it’s possible with this couple, but honestly, why are we all so inclined to pretend? It’s like the “ooos” and “aaahhhs” that come out of everyone’s mouths as they look at the people marching one by one. It all feels so rehearsed, and why? BECAUSE IT IS! They rehearse these things! “Ooooo, the bride is glowing!” Well sure she is, and so are all of us. This is Florida, and that’s not glow, that’s sweat.

Dad symbolically kisses the bride goodbye forever, like he’s never going to see her again, before sitting in the front row where he’s got a better view of her now than he did when she went to college. “Goodbye forever…or until you move back in with me and your mom because you realize you shouldn’t have spent so much on a wedding and should’ve used that money for a down payment on a house.”

The next thing that happens is possibly my favorite thing in the world. The bride’s aunt gets up to speak. She reads a passage from one of the bride’s favorite books, which happens to be a Winnie the Pooh book. It’s cute because it’s about friends that last forever, but that’s not why I’m so psyched. The passage begins with the words, “Pooh is in me, Pooh is in all of us.” How am I not supposed to laugh?!?! WHY IS NO ONE ELSE LAUGHING?!?!?!

The man wearing the white collar tells us to think a positive thought for the bride and groom and put that energy into the rock before we pass the rock toward the middle of the aisle where someone with a basket will collect it. Great, I don’t even get to keep the rock?! Fine, I wish them good sex for as long as they can stand each other and the courage to get out of it if and when they ever feel it’s time before passing my rock to the middle.

As people are talking about forever, I can’t help but think to myself, how can you be so bold? How can anyone make a promise even for tomorrow, in a world where literally the only thing that’s for sure is change? How do you know you’re still going to be boring two years from now? Let alone fifty?! Why are you doing this to yourself? You’re an American woman who can buy her own land! You don’t need this. And his family doesn’t need goats in exchange for you. So why go through all of it? If you need the attention, become an actor.

The wedding is officially over and it’s time for cake! No? Still no cake?! Oh great, pictures. My partner’s mom tries to get me to pose with the family. I politely decline, three times. After two it feels a little less polite but I just don’t want to be a part of this memory. I want to be like a ghost. You feel my presence but you can’t quite put a finger on just how I look or what I say or how much cake I eat. Speaking of cake…

The reception

We head up to the reception and the bride and groom theoretically head up to their room to fuck like they said they would. I finally get some free food, and quickly realize that nothing’s free. My asparagus and potatoes come at the cost of waiting through several speeches before my partner’s mother switches her seat so she can sit next to me and attempt a Spanish Inquisition about her son, and myself, and how we met. It’s as though she’s expecting a sweet, romantic story. I tell her “online” and am vague with my answers in hopes to shut it down.

Throughout the evening, people cling on their glasses prompting the bride and groom to kiss. That’s right, like dogs with a pre-conditioned response. It’s Pavlov’s kiss. I can only hope this trained response carries over into their day-to-day lives. Maybe after the honeymoon, he’s at a work meeting and someone at the conference table accidentally hits their water glass with a pen. Next thing you know, he’s planting a big wet one on his boss. “Oops. Sorry about that, boss. I just got married.” “Ahh,” everyone gets it and laughs it off because he’s trained now.

I think it’s important to mention that I’m a person who likes to play games when she’s bored. So, I begin to play a game with my partner. I tell him that every time we hear the group say “Aw” at something adorable and/or sickeningly sweet, it’s one more guy that gets added to the gangbang he owes me for coming to this wedding. We may not be quite as traditional as the bride and groom, but we like games just as much!

So, we’ve watched the ancient tradition of a woman being given away as though she’s switching owners. We’ve also watched a series of awkward dances while I successfully avoided the dance floor myself, not because I don’t love dancing, but because I feel twerking is inappropriate in front of Christian grandparents with heart conditions. I’ve also successfully avoided pretending like I care about catching fake flowers at the end of the night. And best of all, I finally get my cake!!!

So, why do we get married?

The night was as successful as it could be, but I can’t help but wonder why this all still happens? Why do we still feel the need? I understand there are tax breaks that come with marriage, and certain rights that a married couple has that no one else does, like insurance coverage and other protections. But it doesn’t seem to be about that. If it were, everyone would just do this in a courtroom. So why? Why do people who are supposedly utterly and completely in love feel a need to go through this whole charade? And why is it so highly valued by some? I’ve grown up with girls whose main goal in life was marriage, and who feel like they’re not whole until they find someone to take through this archaic ritual.

It’s my understanding that love is between the people who are in it, and if it’s real, it doesn’t need to be shouted about. If you happen to be a person who needs a promise of forever, why do these particular traditions stick around? Why does the female need a rock that was probably found by an African living a terrible life just so some woman living across the globe can have something shiny on her finger? Why does she wear a big white dress to pretend like she’s this pristine, virginal thing when really she’s someone who should be proud of her past, whether it’s peppered with mistakes or not, because it’s what got her to where she is now? Why does the groom dress like all the other men and just stand there while he’s “given” a woman, “his” woman? Why is there an aisle? Why do all of these people need to be here to watch? When you look at it, really look at it, the only thing that makes sense about a wedding is the cake. I know why there’s cake.

The entire event left me feeling like an alien or a time traveler who knows the truth but can’t say anything because it’ll mess with the time space continuum. So I’ll say it now: if you’re in love, just be in love, for however long, with whomever it happens to be with. Be nice to each other. Listen to each other. Talk to each other. And if it fades away or becomes less fun, then allow each other to go your separate ways amicably and know that you’ll always have those beautiful memories of great hotel sex.

Absolutely Beautiful Spilt Milk…the Hardest I’ve Ever Acted in a Relationship

“I couldn’t believe it was you ‘cause it’s so unlike you!”

I guess that’s why they call it acting.

I’ve been performing since I could walk. Once I could talk, I was taking acting classes. I was always the goof and liked to do weird scenes where I could play an animal or a hunchback. My heroes were people like Jim Carey, the men of Monty Python, and by fifth grade, Conan O’Brien. Once I discovered that he had written for my favorite show of all times, The Simpsons, well, let’s just say the seemingly giant red headed goofball had my heart.

So when I was cast to be the expectant mother in a scene where Mr. O’Brien was to pour milk down the drain behind me, let’s just say I was elated. But I was also in for the biggest acting challenge of my life. From an attention whore of a performance artist to failed male comedians, I’ve played a lot of different roles in my life. But up until this point, I had never played someone quite so…”normal.”

Two Years Later My Tinder Date Finally Paid Off!

“I’m in finance.”

Oh, great, that’s a decent response to the ever common, “so, what do you do for work?” dating question. I was especially relieved at this response considering the fact that on my Tinder profile I specified, “no comics.” I had just broken up with a comic, the third of which I had dated, and I was, as they say, “over it.”

There’s a certain unmatched immaturity and weird competitiveness that comes from these special little beings, particularly when they’re paired up with a female comic such as myself. Now, don’t get me wrong, not all comics are assholes. But a great many of them are, and when they’re not, they’re often quite immature, or very sexist, or extremely egotistical, or unbearably cynical and insensitive, or terrible with their finances and in incredible amounts of debt, or just overall difficult to have any real conversations or sweet moments with. But again, they’re not all like that. Just the ones I’ve dated. And met. And heard about.

But it wasn’t just comics I was trying to avoid. I wanted someone far away from the entertainment industry as a whole, which can often be a challenge when dating in a place like Los Angeles, but here we were. Finance. Lucky me!

We were both really excited to meet, but I was working a day job in addition to an internship at a comedy theater in exchange for free classes. My schedule was slightly hectic and he and I lived a “far” distance from each other. (I was in the valley and he was in Hollywood, which in any other part of the country would be close, but in LA we might as well have been in different states) These circumstances meant that it would take awhile for us to set something up.

As time went by, he was seemingly more frustrated with the wait. His impatience was becoming quite clear, but he was cute and I was still serial dating at the time. We had sexted a couple of times and he seemed like he might be fun in that area of life. My policy at that point was to say yes to a date with anyone and everyone because at the very least I’d have a great story. So when someone got an attitude with me, I didn’t really care. I wasn’t looking for “Mr. or Ms. Right” at the time. I was looking for someone to have wild sex with, or at the very least give me something entertainingly bad to talk about later.

Eventually after a bit of whining and attitude, he told me he might be able to meet me during his lunch hour on a Monday. He worked from home but could pull himself away at around 1 if that was okay with me. Best part about it up until this point was the meeting place he chose: Target. There’s a Target in Hollywood with outdoor seating, in a sort of strip mall-type atmosphere. So that’s where we met. Not for lunch, just to meet. It was clear by this point that he wasn’t even intrigued enough to pay for a meal, or even go halfsies. Despite my policy of saying yes to everyone, I hadn’t had a super douchey date yet. Up until this point, that is.

I couldn’t really figure it out. He would sip on his green can of Monster energy drink while telling me things like, “you’d probably be a pretty good cam girl. You could make like…15 bucks an hour I bet.” He talked about his ex girlfriend a little more than most would consider to be polite on a first date. We also talked about my comedy a little bit. I told him I just received an email about the Last Comic Standing audition at the Hollywood Improv. I showed him the email because I was excited, and he said, “Oh, so, it’s probably like an open mic or something.” I explained that, no, this was an invite-only type of situation, to which he replied, “But probably a lot of people get invited, like thousands I’m sure, right? ‘Cause they have to have bad people to film at those things.”

I didn’t get it. Why was this guy being such a jerk, and why was he acting like every comic I’d ever dated? Was I wrong in thinking that the competitive asshole element would be removed if I dated someone outside of my chosen career path? Why was this guy starting to turn into the green monster that he drank before very my eyes?

I left the “date” feeling strange and almost defeated. What was it all for? I wasn’t even left with a good story. It was just…icky. I put it out of my brain for the most part but every now and then I would think about how odd it all was. About four months ago I deleted our message thread, which I had forgotten even existed, during a phone cleanse.

A few weeks ago I asked a neighbor if she had any good dog watchers/walkers that she could recommend. I was preparing for a trip and wanted to get a good person at a decent price so I was asking around. She texted me the contact numbers of three people and said they were all great. I went to contact the third one and realized…he was already in my phone! IT WAS HIM!!! The asshole “finance” guy was a dog walker?! No WAY!? I texted my neighbor to tell her and here’s how the conversation went:

Me: One of your dog walkers is a guy I went on a TERRIBLE tinder date with! I went to message him and he was already in my phone! Eep!

Neighbor: Wait whaaaaaaat!!! (Dog Walker’s Name)??? Lololol

Me: It’s funny too cause I saw him walking (Dog’s Name) once and was like, that looks like that (Dog Walker) guy, nah, no way, he said he was like a big shot finance guy. Can’t be (Dog Walker).

Neighbor: What?? Rly??? He is like an unemployed comedian.

Boom. And there you have it. The explanation. And a justification. It suddenly all made sense! The way he always came back with a snarky remark when I texted, “Tonight won’t work, I have a show.” The way he acted when I told him about my audition, and the way he acted in general. Everything finally added up! He was just another in a long line of asshole comics.

So the date wasn’t completely pointless. I guess I did get a pretty decent story out of it after all.

It’s Not Okay! What Happened When I Was Intimately Assaulted on an Airplane

I waited in a small room for two FBI agents to finally show up and ask me typical questions such as, “What were you wearing?”

In light of the election and talk of “grabbing pussies,” I thought I’d go ahead and tell my tale of such atrocities. Many people have made light of the subject, writing it off as “locker room talk,” and saying things like “that’s just how men speak.” I don’t know what men these people are associating with, but this is not the way the men I know speak. Men of varying orientations, backgrounds, ages, etc., all across the country and world are saying, “Um, no, we would never just grab pussies, in a locker room or elsewhere.”

There are, however, men who do feel this behavior is okay. Let me just say for the record, it’s SUPER NOT OKAY. Grabbing a woman, on any part of her body, let alone right in her pussy, without consent, wouldn’t even cross the mind of most of the men in my life. It wouldn’t cross my mind either, and I love pussies! So to brush “talk” off like it’s nothing is extremely irresponsible, especially when influential people in the media are the ones speaking these harmful words. I’m not just talking about the candidate who I don’t respect enough to even mention the name of. He wasn’t the only person in that conversation. And that conversation unfortunately does happen in certain locker rooms. But that still doesn’t make it okay, or harmless, or something to brush under the rug. Because guess what?! It happens. Words become actions. Many men feel that they can just grab you right in the pussy. And they get away with it.

I was on a 15 hour American Airlines flight home to Chicago from India. The man sitting next to me was wearing way to much cologne, donned a big bushy mustache, and a cell phone clipped to his belt. These offenses would unfortunately not to be his worst. He was asking me questions about Chicago and what he should do there on his layover. At one point, he asked if I wanted to show him around and I politely declined stating that I was excited to see my boyfriend who was picking me up at the airport. I then decided to drape a blanket over myself and try to get some sleep. About an hour and a half into the flight, in my sleepy state, I began feeling a hand all over my body. I mean ALL OVER my body. It was invasive, and heavy, and under my blanket. I could feel the pressure from it all over my breasts, and then it snaked down to my legs and in between my thighs. I was in that mid-way point between sleep and awake so I didn’t react right away. I finally woke right the eff up when I felt his hand grab me, guess where?! That’s correct, right in my pussy. The hand under my blanket belonged to Mr. Too Much Cologne.

I jumped up immediately. He moved his hand away and stared at the screen on the seat in front of him. I looked at him and asked, “What were you doing?!” He sat completely still and silent, apparently unable to take his eyes off the Sandra Bullock/Ryan Reynolds blockbuster, “The Proposal” playing in front of him (who can blame ‘im?!). I sat for a second wondering if he’d even realized what he had done, or if maybe I was mistaken. Was I going crazy? Was I still asleep and dreamed the whole thing, or rather, nightmared it? Then I looked down and saw his erection. This was not imagined. I yelled, “Do you think what you did was okay?!” Still, the movie was far too engrossing for him to reply. I finally exclaimed, “Get UP!” At which point I finally received a response from him, which was to stand up and move into the aisle.

I left my window seat and not knowing what else to do, ran. I ran first toward the back of the plane, losing a contact lens in the process (for which I have yet to be reimbursed by the man or American Airlines). Failing to find a flight attendant in the back of the plane, I ran toward the front. Finally I came upon a male flight attendant near the bathrooms and frantically told him what had just happened, to which he replied, “Oh…so…do you wanna move seats?” No, I just wanted to tell you how happy I was that I finally found the one! “YES! Move me!”

I was moved to business class where the female flight attendants made sure I was okay, as the male attendant brought my things to me and said, “geeze, you have a lot of stuff.” I don’t check luggage when I travel abroad, which is not the point, asshole, but thanks for the unsolicited opinion! They let me know that the pilots had been informed and the man would be apprehended upon landing, but there wasn’t much else they could do at that time because there was no marshal on the plane. I tried as hard as I could to sleep for the next thirteen hours, but it was pointless. I just imagined him coming up to me in my new fancy seat and doing it again, or something even worse. Did he know he was going to be apprehended? Was he going to come after me and try to get me to shut up or change my story? Was there an in-flight Lifetime movie relating to this exact experience that could keep me occupied for the next several hours?! Luckily there were no further incidents and the plane landed safely in Chicago.

As promised, Chicago PD was waiting for us to get off the plane. They were all set to take both of us to customs when one of the female flight attendants chimed in, “Maybe you should take her first, so she doesn’t have to see him again.” A male police officer scoffed, “She’s already seen him, what’s the big deal?” This is yet another great example of the training offered to those meant to protect and serve us. The men that I dealt with on this exhausting day had zero sensitivity for the issue, while the women seemed to completely understand. This baffles me, but I have to think it has something to do with the fact that women are trained from birth on how to deal with and/or try to avoid these situations and men, well, I don’t know what most men are trained for, but it’s clearly not sensitivity.

I waited in a small room for two FBI agents to finally show up and ask me typical questions such as, “What were you wearing?” and “What did you say to him?” As though my yoga pants and light conversation about fun things to do in Chicago were to blame for my sexual assault. They made sure to laugh a lot and make real light of the situation. One of them asked if I wanted to press charges, and while doing so suggested that it wouldn’t really do much, because, “this has already happened thirteen times this year.” Did I mention it was February? I absolutely wanted to press charges and made sure that everyone knew that. They said they spoke to the man, who apparently was “very sorry” and crying, which was another reason I shouldn’t press charges. I insisted once again on pressing charges. They said they would send him home, and “he’s here on business, so he’ll probably get fired. Plus, he’s married, so his wife will be pissed.” To which I replied, “That’s not enough, please press charges.” I was told to go home and they would continue talking to him. I would receive a call when they were finished.

I was met by my boyfriend, and had to explain why I didn’t want to be touched even though we’d been apart for ten days. I got back to my apartment where I finally laid down to get the sleep I desperately needed when I was awoken by a phone call with a laughing, literally laughing FBI agent who said, “Yeah, we didn’t press charges. He said that he’s done this with other Middle Eastern women before who liked it. I think he just thought you liked him cause you were being so nice. He’s already on a plane back to India, so, he’s really gonna get it from his wife. He wrote you an apology note. It’s kinda cute, want me to read it to you?” I received the note in the mail a couple weeks later. The officer and I have differing opinions on what we consider to be “cute.”

To this day, when I travel, I have a very difficult time sitting next to strangers. All I can think of is this disgusting man who’s face and shitty mustache are embedded in my brain forever, and the fact that he knows it’s okay to do this. After all, who’s going to stop him?Not American Airlines who, in response to my letter asking that they ban him from further flights said they can’t deny his business. Not the FBI. Not anyone in the US government.

So I ask you this, if this is already a huge issue in this country, if this exact situation had already happened 13 times in just two months, why would it be okay to elect someone into office who chalks things like this up to “typical male behavior” and “locker room talk?” Anyone who so clearly disrespects women, and has such low opinions of them, or any gender of human, doesn’t even deserve to be on a plane, let alone lead a country. Don’t we as a country need to move forward, rather than slip back into archaic, misogynist mindsets?

I have to say, I’m grateful that a dialogue has started, and I’m hopeful that it continues. Because people need to know this is not something that should be laughed away, or scoffed at, or disregarded as women being oversensitive. It’s an invasion on someone else’s body, which, often times in this world is literally the only thing we have that’s truly ours. Don’t let it be taken away from you. And when it is, fight back. I was too scared, tired, and weak when it happened to really fight back. But I fight now. And, at the risk of sounding cliché, one of the best ways to fight is to vote. So vote, dammit, and keep creeps away from our pussies!

How Loving My “Little” Helps Me Build Confidence

This was where I started.
This was where I started.

Since I was eight or so years old I’ve made many attempts at utilizing various forms of traditional “western” therapy to no avail. In the past couple of years, I’ve begun to work with more mystical therapists like healers, hypnotherapists and intuits. It just so happens this is the right direction for me. As someone who over analyzes nearly every event and moment of her life at a constant, incessant rate, I’m not the type to benefit from “talking it out.” All my brain does all night long is talk it out. I need people who can help me calm down, meditate, and find proper and more intuitive coping mechanisms.

I went to see therapists originally as a child because of my father’s imprisonment for child abuse. Surprise surprise, I’m a comedian with daddy issues! These issues often come into play for me, but so do a whole bunch of other life issues. When I get upset, I don’t always know what to do, as I wasn’t raised with super effective coping mechanisms or a lot of proper communication. I find myself particularly lacking when I feel fear. Fear has always been pretty big for me. I’m afraid to put my head under water, afraid of heights and steep drop-offs when hiking, which really sucks because I LOVE hiking, afraid of driving on the highway, which super sucks because I live in LA, basically, you name it, I can come up with a reason to be afraid of it. I used to get really mad at my fear. I would yell at myself, “toughen up, power through it, quit being a baby!” This was not helpful.

What I got to see once I pushed through.
What I got to see once I pushed through.

I started speaking with a hypnotherapist who took me on a journey into a beautiful meadowy field that I created in my own mind. I met a little version of myself there and I started to have a conversation with her. We called her, ever creatively, “Little Lisa.” Little Lisa is the version of me before the shit hit the fan in my life. We all have this small person, even those of us without heavy traumas. There’s at least one point in each of our lives where life started to get real, where our childlike wonder and amusement took a more serious turn. This happens to a lot of people in middle school because we turn into “adults” and horrendous things start happening to our bodies, in addition to being asked by those older than us to start taking more responsibility. However, those of us with childhood traumas have younger littles. And some of us have a lot of littles. My major little is me at around four or five years old. This is how old I was when I first started feeling depressed. It was when I started getting made fun of a lot. It was when, for whatever reason, I realized life wasn’t JUST about having fun and being a goofball.

One of the way easier parts of the trail, but not at its toughest because I couldn't manage taking a pic while also trying not to fall to my death.
One of the way easier parts of the trail, but not at its toughest because I couldn’t manage taking a pic while also trying not to fall to my death.

My hypnotherapist asked me what my little said I should do when I feel badly. Little Lisa said, “Just dance, ya goof!!!” and then began to dance around like a crazy, goofy Muppet. Because this left me with such a great feeling, I began to go to this little girl whenever I felt distressed. I would ask her to help me, especially when I felt scared. But it wasn’t really effective in my day-to-day life.

Then I spoke with my intuit. We weren’t even talking directly about my fear when she too brought up the concept of Little Lisa. Her suggestion to me was to go back to that little girl. I said, “I do, but when I ask her what to do, she doesn’t really know.” She replied that it wasn’t really fair for me to be asking my little for guidance. She was probably more afraid than I was. Why would you ask a scared child for advice? That child needs to be loved.

Then she told me what I really should be doing when I go back to this little girl. I needed to hold that little girl, cradle her in my arms, stroke her hair and her cheek and tell her that everything is okay, that nothing is her fault, and that she’s a good person who deserves good things and that above all, she’s safe. Soothe her, tell her that she is loved, over and over again.

So I did just that. I lay in bed that night, closing my eyes, imagining my little five year-old self, and cradled her lovingly until adult me actually fell asleep. It worked!

The End.
The End.

This didn’t exactly change my life overnight, but by being kinder to my inner littles, I’ve actually become kinder to the adult version of myself that exists in the now, and thus have been able to accomplish more. Like when I was alone on a very difficult hike in Hawaii. I was faced with a steep drop off and the trail was getting progressively narrower. I wanted to push on because it was so beautiful, but I felt I couldn’t, I was so overcome with fear, I froze. Before, I would have told myself to “Shut up. Just get through it. Quit being stupid! Quit being weak!” But with my new-found wisdom I took a seat on the ground, breathed deeply and said something more along the lines of, “You’re doing great. You’re being very brave, and you’ve gotten through so much. This is very scary, so you should be very proud of yourself once you’ve done it.” With patience and kindness, I got through it. There were tears and some shaking, of course, but it was amazingly beautiful on the other side of that fear, and I was so glad pushing through paid off.

I’ve used this tactic in my day-to-day life since then. When I’m afraid of a situation, when I get jealous, when I stress out because something didn’t go the way I wanted or needed it to, or when I suffer a tragedy, or even just a minor set back, I find a little. I go back to whichever one feels triggered. Sometimes it’s that 4-5 year-old. Sometimes it’s me from only a few years ago when I was sexually assaulted and felt defenseless. Sometimes it’s me from just a couple of years ago when I was physically assaulted and felt helpless and voiceless. Sometimes it’s me as a teenager, sometimes a pre-teen, and sometimes even a baby. Whoever it is, when I let her know she’s loved, and that yes, sometimes life isn’t fair, but she deserves better and is safe, it makes the me of now feel loved, and safe, and as though life might just be okay.

So find your little, or littles, give them big hugs and kisses, and tell them that though life is full of challenges, they are loved.

I Always Meet In Public First…Now

My relationship is such that if I want to have a little somethin’ somethin’ on the side, I’m free to do so, and vice versa.

My partner and I are both pansexual, so our needs can’t always be fully met by one another, and we also have quite insatiable sexual appetites, so this arrangement works out great for us. Quite often, we like to invite others into our bedroom because as we see it, the more the merrier! I felt the urge to invite someone to join us one Friday night after a set at a show. Because many LA comedy shows are overbooked, they tend to go a little long, and this show was no exception. My attention span can be quite short, especially after having just performed, so, as in many similar situations, I started to play my favorite phone game: Tinder!

I quickly matched with a guy who had some pictures of him playing soccer. He appeared athletic, which, when all I’m in the mood for is sex, is really about all I look for in a guy, at least at first. Now, I will say that I, like everyone reading this, have heard all the reasons to be terrified of meeting up with strangers. In many people’s minds Tinder and other dating apps are filled with nothing but murderers, rapists, and other crazy types. There are a lot of warnings, especially for ladies out there, to be careful before inviting someone into their lives in general, so I tend to be careful about who I invite into my home and whose homes I go into.

One way that I exercise precaution is to meet people in public first. However, after you’ve dated, say, a hundred or so different people, you tend to get sick of the whole meet-up-for-coffee-see-if-there’s-a-vibe routine. Every time I’ve ever done it, it’s been a formality, a fairly unnecessary step toward the inevitable goal of fucking each other’s brains out. It also wastes precious time that could’ve been spent in between, on top of, or underneath the sheets. Because I’d had such good luck up until this point, I decided to throw caution to the wind and just invite the guy right over. Part of my boldness and desire to get right to it was because my partner was going to be home, and this guy seemed to be into the idea of both of us. Pairing that with the fact that he mentioned Tantric massage, and said that was actually something he did professionally, made my decision a no-brainer. So I invited him to come over and give my partner a tantric massage training session of sorts. I felt like this was a pretty safe bet, as my partner is over six feet tall, and works with his hands for a living. He’s a very strong guy, what could be the threat?! WHAT COULD GO WRONG?!

7 Tips to a Fun and Sexy Valentine’s Adventure Even Without Someone Special

Go do something awesome for yourself. 

Many people, myself included, actually couldn’t care less about Valentine’s Day. However, I wasn’t always so carefree about it. I used to let it consume me. Back in high school I would get really depressed thinking that I’d never have anyone to share special times with. As I got older, I realized that Valentine’s Day, like most holidays, just wasn’t that important to me. So when my partner told me he was going to be out of town on the big day, I thought nothing of it. But then I realized, this day is still really important to some folks. So, I decided to compile a list of things that people can do on Valentine’s Day if they don’t have a partner(s), or won’t be able to spend it with who they want to spend it with.

  • Take yourself out to dinner.

    Maybe there’s a restaurant you’ve always wanted to try. Maybe said restaurant is on your bucket list but no one else you know has ever expressed interest. This is a perfect time to try it out! If you don’t feel like seeing a bunch of couples out on the town, avoid the opportunity for sadness or loneliness to sneak in by making it a lunch date instead. During the day, you’re less likely to feel anything but satisfied and full from a delicious meal.

  • Go for a walk in the park.

    If you have a hiking trail nearby, even better! Spending time alone, surrounded by nothing but nature and your own thoughts can be extremely therapeutic. It beats the heck out of sitting at home and watching the boobtube all day into the night. Plus, you’re burning calories, which means you can feel less guilty about the what’s next on the list..

It’s Not the Climax Date on the Calendar That Matters

This plan couldn’t be beat…until it was.

I’ve never cared much about Christmas, or Thanksgiving. I don’t go “home for the holidays.” I haven’t given Valentine’s Day a second thought since I was a teenager.

Precious Days

I’m not completely devoid of sentiment. I do have a couple of special days a year that I celebrate “religiously.” Halloween and New Year’s Eve have always had great significance to me. Halloween because it’s when everyone acts the way they wish they could the rest of the year, and New Year’s Eve because it’s symbolic of a new beginning, a wiping of the slate, a celebration of accomplishments from the year before and an acknowledgement of goals and dreams about what’s to come. Those are precious days to me and as such, I try to spend them doing special things with people who I find invaluable to my life.

This year, I spent Halloween with a friend rather than my partner, because my partner was out of town for a couple of months. When he’d announced his plans to be gone over my favorite holiday, I was slightly heartbroken, but understood. It was for the trip of a lifetime and I wasn’t going to let a one-day, city-wide costume party get in the way of that for him. It just meant to both of us that New Year’s Eve would be even more special.

Unforgettable Date with Mom

His mom was in town on over the holiday weeks, so on New Year’s Eve Day we went to a small island off the coast of Southern California and did some cave kayaking. It was amazing. I saw wild foxes, seals, dolphins and some whales; truly an unforgettable day. That night, however, was for us and his mom understood that, so she said we should take it for ourselves and do something special.

Epic Climax Date Plans

When he had asked me what I wanted to do, being the overly amorous gal that I am, I told him my only real goal for the night was for us to be climaxing during the countdown, and for a full release at “Happy New Year!” He agreed that would be an epic New Year’s plan. All that was left was location.

We’d originally intended to go camping, somewhere not too far, like Joshua Tree. However, the weather had other plans, deciding that torrential downpours followed by sub-zero temperatures would be a better way to spend New Years. So J Tree was out, however, there were closer places we could go. We explored all of our options, and as wet and cold as it was going to be, it seemed like the best plan would be to just stick to a hike somewhere close. We would get to the top of a mountain, screw each other’s brains out until the countdown was over, and then head home.

Dehydration…a Kicker

This plan couldn’t be beat…until it was. My partner, who avoided drinking water during our all-day kayaking trip because he didn’t want to pee in his wet suit, was extremely dehydrated. We took in a bunch of fluids and made some macaroni and cheese. Did I mention he’s lactose intolerant? Just a little bit, but apparently something like that is greatly exacerbated by a weakened system due to dehydration. Needless to say, he started to not feel very well.

Should I Stay or Should I Go

We took a quick nap before our hike and I woke up ready to go! He woke up…slightly less excited. I couldn’t tell at that point whether he just didn’t feel like going out or he was really ill. So I said I could go on my own. This was in no way meant out of spite or passive aggression, and he knew that. I simply wanted to be outside at midnight and I don’t like dragging people along when they don’t want to be there. He insisted on coming with me. He just kept saying, “I wanna be with you.”

What I should have said was, “okay, let’s stay here then.” But I still didn’t fully realize just how bad it was, until we got to the mountain. We got out of the car with our backpack filled with Trader Joe’s fireworks chocolate, sparkling apple cider, and a blanket. He wasn’t looking great, so I asked him if we should go back. “NO! I want it to be special.” Just minutes into the hike it became apparent to me just how ill he was. We were stopping every few minutes for him to collect himself. This was certainly going to be a special night. But not the type of special either of us had intended.

The Mountain at Midnight

We made it up to the mountain and during the midnight count down he was off in the bushes taking care of some nasty business while I toasted myself for my achievement of keeping cool and not being too grossed out. We headed back down the mountain and I drove us home. By this time more than ever I felt terrible for making him come with me and being so insistent on this being a special night.

Best Laid Plans Became a Care Package

I took care of him the rest of the night and the entire next day. While I nursed him back to health I realized something. I don’t know if it’s because I’m older now and don’t party anymore, or if it’s because I’ve finally found someone who I’m calm and comfortable with, but it didn’t matter to me that it wasn’t ideal. This night was actually the opposite of ideal. It was kind of the worst. I watched disgusting things happen to the person I was supposed to be doing altogether other kinds of disgusting things with. But despite this, I was glad to have spent the night with him. I was happy to have been able to take care of him and I was glad he was around. This leads me to ask the ever important question: what happened to me?!

Another Day for a “Special” Date

We made a deal to do a countdown later on this year, which we’ve set a date for. We’ll recreate New Year’s Eve well past its actual date, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is that we’ll be together, and that we were together.

So this Valentine’s day, I urge you, dear reader, to treat it like any other day: special. Special not because it’s February 14, but because of the company you’re with and the moments you share. Even if those moments turn out gross.