Study Shows Kids in Same-Sex Marriages Are Doing Just Fine

I am sure you know a straight couple who are terrible parents. You bet your ass, I do! But those straight couples can easily have and keep their children, while LGBTQ couples have a harder time adopting or living their best lives as parents because angry conservatives believe same-sex parents are not as fit as heterosexual parents.

Well, after 25 years, we now have empirical proof that same-sex parents are no different than straight parents. The National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study followed a group of lesbian couples who started families in the late 1980s and 1990s, and they interviewed their kids as adults. Many of the lesbians' children are now 25 years old, and they told the study that they are doing just fine, thank you.

The researchers found no significant differences between the children interviewed and their peers.

ThinkProgress pointed out that the study was not racially or economically diverse and that it did not include male same-sex parented households, but the study's conclusions were similar to others made on the topic.

Women Prefer Men Who Exhibit Benevolent Sexism

I am staunchly in favor of traditional courtship, but in modern times, the idea of it seems to confuse or anger people. For instance, I spoke with a recent single, female, college graduate who was smart, had a good job, and was very pretty. I asked her about her dating life, and she described how bad it was. Guys she met online would ask her for a date that night, and she'd meet up at a casual dive bar and sometimes the guys would pay. Sometimes they wouldn't. But each date, she found okay, but not necessarily romantic.

Things seemed to be looking up when she met a guy in his 30s who was handsome, had a good job, and shared numerous interests. I figured since this guy was older, he would know how to take her on a nice date and make her feel special, but to my dismay, she told me that she allowed him to just come over and they'd hook up. Sometimes he spent the night. Sometimes he didn't. She was overjoyed when he once bought her McDonalds. I pretty much died inside when she told me he started to tell her about his other friends-with-benefits, but she didn't tell him this bothered her because she wanted him to think she was a cool girl.

This girl's acceptance of bad behavior fascinated me even more because she grew up in a functional two-parent household, where she spent her life viewing a loving relationship. I asked this girl why she didn't make guys take her on real dates or why she didn't set any ground rules for what she wanted, and she said that she was a feminist and didn't expect guys to pay, take the lead, or have any restrictions. I asked her if she believed that guys biologically enjoyed the chase, and she said yes. So I asked her why she didn't make guys chase after her, and she got mad at me.

I don't blame her for getting upset. The rules of dating seem complicated because society appears to have progressed so much. However, I firmly believe that when it comes to relationships you have to be honest about what you like. And for many straight women, they enjoy masculine men who treat them like stereotypical women, even if that undermines their feminist beliefs.

Pelin Gul from Iowa State University and Tom Kupfer from the University of Kent published a study in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin that found women were most attracted to men who exhibited benevolent sexism over men who believed in equality between the sexes. The study found that both feminists and non-feminists preferred benevolent sexist men. 

When most people hear the word "sexism," they immediately think of toxic macho guys who hate women and treat women badly based on gender stereotypes. That type of behavior is known as hostile sexism, and people who are hostile sexists should be avoided because they are super, duper scary. 

Benevolent sexism, on the other hand, puts men and women into gender-role boxes that affect their behaviors. For instance, in benevolent sexism, women are thought of as nurturing and in need of protection, and men believe they must take care of the females around them for this reason. 

Gul and Kupfer said that females looking to partner up were more attracted to benevolent sexist men because they believed these men were more likely to invest in the relationship and were more willing to provide, protect, and commit. The researchers acknowledged that benevolent sexism could undermine women, but that women were okay with this because the other benefits outweighed the bad. 

In the study, benevolent sexist men were more likely to do things such as give their coats to the woman if it was cold or help a woman first in an emergency situation. Egalitarian men believed women shouldn't be put on a pedestal and should've got their own damn coats in the cold weather. 

“Women are attracted to men with benevolent sexist attitudes and behaviors because benevolent sexism signals that a potential mate is willing to invest (i.e., protect, provide, and commit), which is an important mate preference for women,” Gul told PsyPost. "“Because of this, even though benevolence can be undermining to women at times, they generally still prefer men who show they are benevolent. This may apply to any women, regardless of their level of feminism and gender egalitarian views."

This study has some critics upset that women would choose a benevolent sexist man over one that believes in equality, but their disapproval only strengthens the need for more people to come forward and let others know it is okay to like traditional gender roles in relationships. It is also okay to not like them. What is most important is evaluating yourself and what you need to feel loved and going out and seeking that. 

For feminists, the idea of liking a quote-unquote man's man may seem to go against the idea that women should be equal to men, but perhaps feminism should also be re-evaluated. Men and women are not biologically the same, but they should be given equal opportunities in the public sphere and the right to choose how they live their personal lives. Then they can decide on their own what to pursue or not based on their individual goals and personalities. 

Libertarians Are the Only US Party to Endorse Decriminalization of Sex Work

Let's say a man goes on a first date. He dresses up and takes a woman out to a nice restaurant and buys wine, maybe even flowers. Throughout the meal, he woos her with how great of a guy he is, giving the impression that he'll one day make a great life partner. Afterward, they get more drinks, and by the end of the night, he gets back to her apartment where they have sex. In the morning, his date rolls over, hoping for a kiss, only to find that her lover has disappeared.

In this situation, the man probably spent a few hundred dollars with the intention to only have sex, but he left his ghosted date feeling used and upset. While this type of behavior is legal in the United States, a man who goes to a prostitute and pays her upfront with the expectation that he only wants sex is considered unsavory and illegal.

But if we really examine the situations, which one is actually worse?

Bartering sex for money is known as the world's oldest profession, but it is mostly illegal in the United States. The US, being of Puritanical origins, finds the idea of a man explicitly paying cash to a willing woman for sex immoral; but a man is expected to engage in traditional courtship, which is expensive, and once married he is often the breadwinner.

There are obvious differences between a man being with an escort versus taking care of his girlfriend or wife, but in both cases, the acts are between consensual adults and involve sex and money. What goes on in someone's bedroom or household fascinates me, not going to lie about that, but it's not my business to judge or police what happens behind closed doors if both parties are willing participants.

While not explicitly saying so on their platforms, the Republican and Democratic parties are staunchly in favor of governing their constituents' sex lives, but the Libertarian Party has openly campaigned to decriminalize prostitution. According to Reason, "This makes the L.P. the only notable U.S. political party to stand unequivocally for sex-worker rights and in opposition to cops caging people for consensual sex."

In July, the party, which emphasizes personal freedoms as long as they do not harm others, stated their support for legalized sex work.

"We assert the right of consenting adults to provide sexual services to clients for compensation, and the right of clients to purchase sexual services from consenting sex workers," the Libertarian Party stated at the Libertarian National Convention in New Orleans.

Many people who oppose decriminalizing prostitution falsely equate human trafficking with those who willingly enter sex work. Earlier this year, Congress passed the bipartisan bill FOSTA-SESTA that allowed publishers to be liable if sex workers posted advertisements on their platforms. The bill's intention was to stop human trafficking, but it also affected voluntary sex workers. FOSTA-SESTA resulted in the shut-down of Backpage and the personal section of Craigslist, and many sex workers said the bill put them in danger because they could no longer advertise online and now had to return to the streets.

The United States has a history of upholding laws that turn out to be based on outdated morality. Marijuana is a recent example. These laws unfairly impose someone's values that are not universal and are not made for the greater good but instead to control the population's liberties.

In the case of prostitution, I side with the Libertarian Party. If adults want to consensually engage in transactional sex, then it should not be up to the government to stop or punish them.

I'm making my own web talk show!

Years ago, I was searching on Amazon for books about Asian-American women, and I stumbled upon a guidebook written by a man that detailed how to rent prostitutes in Thailand. The book detailed the different types of hookers, where to find them, and how much they cost; and I was fascinated and horrified that the book not only existed but was a bestseller on the popular bookselling platform.

That book made me realize that there was an interest in Asian-American female sexuality but that the interest was served by men and their point of view. The stereotype of oversexualized and submissive Asian women has been around for ages, and it isn't going away anytime soon no matter how much people protest. But I felt that instead of complaining about the stereotype, why don't I shift the narrative?

That's why I published The Red Lantern Scandals, an erotica series that explored the lives of four Chinese-American women in Los Angeles. The book was a hit and lauded because it presented Asian-American sexuality in a way that was never seen before, and it inspired me to continue my quest to change the way people think about sex and relationships.

I am extremely sex-positive, and in American society, we are given conflicting views about sex that fill people with confusion or shame. For instance, we are bombarded with sexuality in the media, but slut-shamed by clergy and many people in society. But people who also aren't on board to party (ie. sleep with their bosses or be complicit in sexual harassment) are not promoted and sometimes shunned in the workplace. It all makes no sense.

Because of these confusing messages, people often aren't comfortable with themselves and they don't know how to be honest with what they want out of their relationships. That's one reason I created this blog, and that's one of the main reasons I created the talk show TUESDAYS WITH T.LO.

It's time we got honest about sex. It's time we figure out how to be happy.

Tuesdays with T.Lo will air new episodes on Youtube and Facebook, starting this month. Hope to see you there!

10 Outrageous Celebrity Affairs

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, is currently under investigation with the FBI because of his 2016 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels. In January, the Wall Street Journal reported that someone in Trump’s camp had paid off Daniels so that she would stay mum about her alleged 2006 affair with Trump, and the payment which was supposed to stop a scandal has sparked a probe that could potentially take down Trump or at least his long-time ally.

But no matter what happens with the Cohen investigation, there is no doubt that the Trump and Daniels affair is one that will be forever remembered for its shock value and importance in history.

But what other celebrity affairs have made their marks? The following are ten of the most shocking.

10. Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe

In the 1990s, Meg Ryan was America’s sweetheart and married to wholesome actor Dennis Quaid. But her cutesy image was shattered when she hooked up with her “Proof of Life” co-star Russell Crowe. The affair arguably hurt her career but didn’t seem to affect Crowe’s, and Ryan also lost Quaid in the aftermath as well. Quaid later remarried and Ryan began a years-long relationship with John Mellencamp.

9. Hugh Grant with Divine Brown

Hugh Grant and his long-time girlfriend Elizabeth Hurley were one of the hottest celebrity couples in the 1990s, but their love hit a bump in the road in 1995 when Grant was arrested for lewd conduct after he was caught with a prostitute named Divine. Hurley amazingly forgave Grant’s lack of judgment, and so did the public. Although Hurley and Grant stayed together after the scandal, they eventually broke up but remained friends.

8. Elizabeth Taylor and Eddie Fisher

Elizabeth Taylor was known to be a vixen back in her youth, and in the 1950s, she famously had an affair with Eddie Fisher, who was married to Debbie Reynolds. Fisher left Reynolds for Taylor and Taylor left her then-husband; but alas, their love was not meant to be. Five years later, Taylor divorced Fisher and married her “Cleopatra” co-star Richard Burton.

7. Kristen Stewart and Rupert Sanders

Kristen Stewart and her “Twilight” co-star Robert Pattinson were the most talked about couple of their generation almost ten years ago, but their relationship imploded in 2012 when Stewart was caught kissing her “Snow White and the Huntsmen” director Rupert Sanders, who was married and a father of two. The cheating scandal resulted in Stewart and Sanders both being dumped by their partners, and Stewart even got a mean shoutout from our now-president, Donald Trump. Years after this affair, Stewart has come out of the closet.

6. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt

On the set of “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” co-stars Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt fell in love. The problem was–Pitt was married at the time to America’s sweetheart, Jennifer Aniston! The love triangular resulted in Pitt and Aniston’s divorce, and Jolie and Pitt eventually formed a large family together before recently calling it quits.

5. Soon-Yi Previn and Woody Allen

Woody Allen has been married to his wife, Soon-Yi, for decades, but the way they got together has many feeling uncomfortable. Allen was dating Soon-Yi’s mother, Mia Farrow, when he met his future wife who is 35 years younger than him. Allen and Farrow broke up in 1992 when Farrow found nude photos of her daughter taken by Allen, and Allen and Soon-Yi married five years later. The way the couple met was icky enough, but their relationship gets more complicated because Soon-Yi’s brother, Ronan Farrow, alleges that Allen molested their sister, Dylan, when she was a child.

4. Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton

In 1998, Monica Lewinsky became the most famous intern in the world when it was revealed she had an affair with President Bill Clinton from 1995 to 1997. The investigation into the sexual relationship between the then 49-year-old and the bright-eyed, blue dress-wearing 22-year-old eventually led to the impeachment of Clinton because he had lied during official statements. Clinton was subsequently acquitted, and decades later, Lewinsky has become a powerful voice in the anti-bullying movement.

3. Tiger Woods and a slew of women…

In 2009, Tiger Woods’ then-wife Elin Nordegren allegedly attacked his car with a golf club after she had confronted him about his cheating. After that story broke, it was revealed that the golfing superstar had numerous girlfriends around the country, including escorts. In 2010, the pair divorced and Woods lost numerous endorsements.

2. Marilyn Monroe and John F. Kennedy

When she was alive, Marilyn Monroe was arguably the sexiest woman in the world, and she was also known to have bedded a few married men along the way. One of them being President John F. Kennedy! While their affair was never confirmed, who could forget her sultry “Happy Birthday” rendition to JFK? It is rumored that Monroe had an affair with JFK and his brother Robert F. Kennedy, and the news of those relationships contributed to her suicide.

1. Stormy Daniels and Donald Trump

Before becoming President of the United States, Donald Trump was known as a playboy, even when he was married. So when it came out that he had an affair with porn star Stormy Daniels in 2006, it didn’t cause much of a stir… until people realized that his lawyer Michael Cohen may have violated campaign finance law when he paid Daniels $130,000 in 2016 to keep quiet about their affair. The payment has resulted in the FBI raiding Cohen’s home and office in New York, and an investigation into the matter is still pending.

10 Celebrities Who Insured Their Body Parts for Millions

Celebs, unlike the rest of us, make money off looking good or performing at an A-level. So if their bodies get injured, then that could mean a loss of income, which is why many of them insure their body parts, not only for medical bills but also for their money-earning potential.

The following are ten celebrities whose limbs are allegedly worth millions of dollars.

10. Gene Simmons

KISS star, Gene Simmons, is famous for sticking out his super long tongue, and because that’s his signature, he insured it for $1 million.

9. America Ferrera

America Ferrera famously starred on ABC’s Ugly Betty and is now the lead of TBS’s Superstore, but she is also the spokesperson for Aquafresh White Trays. Because her teeth are so important to her modeling, she had them insured for $10 million.

8. Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton once joked, “It costs a lot of money to look this cheap,” but she wasn’t really kidding. The singer who openly talks about her affinity for plastic surgery had her large breast implants insured for $600,000!

7. Daniel Craig

When Daniel Craig took on the role of James Bond, he insured his entire body for $9.5 million. He reportedly did this because the role required dangerous stunt work, and if he got hurt, his career could be over.

6. Bruce Springsteen

Singer Bruce Springsteen insured his voice for $6 million. Known as “The Boss,” Springsteen has a career that has spanned for decades, starting in the 1960s.

5. Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey was hired by Gillette to show off her freshly shaved legs, and to protect her money makers, she insured them for $1 billion! The diva is reportedly worth $520 million from her long musical career. She makes money from endorsements, tours, royalties, and more.

4. Heidi Klum

Model Heidi Klum insured her legs for $1 million a piece. She is frequently seen in high heels and short dresses or shorts, and the former Victoria’s Secret Angel knows that her gams are big income-earners.

3. Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts remains America’s Sweetheart, thanks to her loveable energy and mega-watts smile. Because her grin is so important to her brand, she reportedly insured her teeth for $30 million.

2. David Beckham

British soccer superstar David Beckham has insured his athletic body for $195 million. The plan includes his legs, feet, and toes. Not only is he covered from injury, but he is also insured in case his body is ever maimed because the heartthrob also makes a killing as a model.

1. Jennnifer Lopez

Jennifer Lopez has one of the most famous butts in Hollywood, and she reportedly insured it for $27 million. The 50-year-old entertainer was one of the first women to make being curvaceous cool when she landed on the A-list thanks to the 1997 film Selena.

Men More Likely To Lie About How Many Sexual Partners They've Had

There was a joke in the movie American Pie 2 about how men and women lie about how many people they've slept with. Men pad their numbers while women divide their conquests by three. And a new study published in the Journal of Sex Research found that this joke is actually true.

Researchers from the University of Glasgow used data from 15,000 people, aged 17 to 74, that focused on questions about their past sexual partners. Men reported that they had way more sexual partners than women had reported, and the team wondered--why is there such a discrepancy?

"In a closed population and defined time period, the mean number of opposite-sex partners reported by men and women should be equal. However, in all surveys, men report more partners. This inconsistency is pivotal to debate about the reliability of self-reported sexual behavior," the researchers stated in their abstract.

The researchers figured that men rounded up in reporting their sexual histories, but women were more exact. Another theory for the gap was that men perhaps really did have more sex partners than women, and this could be because of their lax attitudes towards affairs or cheating.

But whatever the reason, men on average claim to have more bed partners, on average 14 compared to women's 7. 

10 Compatibity Questions To Ask Before Getting Married

When we embark on relationships, we never know how long they'll last. Sometimes all we want are fun flings, but other instances we fall hard, thinking our partners are "The One." In some cases, those partners truly are our soulmates, people who share our values, lifestyles, and dreams, but other times we are blinded by love and forget to ask tough questions that expose issues that will drive apart the union down the road. 

Researchers at the University of Exeter studied why relationships fail, according to The Independent, and to conduct their study, they spoke with couples, divorce attorneys, mediators, and judges. 

The couples were in different stages--still together or separated--and the researchers interviewed them about what worked and didn't. 

The lawyers and judges were asked why they thought relationships ended and they cited the following main reasons: incompatibility, unrealistic expectations, inability to face issues in the relationship and “failure to nurture” the relationship. 

From all this information, those at the University of Exeter created a list of ten questions couples must ask themselves to test the strengths and weaknesses of their relationships.   

These 10 questions are:
  1. Are my partner and I a ‘good fit’?
  2. Do we have a strong basis of friendship?
  3. Do we want the same things in our relationship and out of life?
  4. Are our expectations realistic?
  5. Do we generally see the best in each other?
  6. Do we both work at keeping our relationship vibrant?
  7. Do we both feel we can discuss things freely and raise issues with each other?
  8. Are we both committed to working through hard times?
  9. When we face stressful circumstances would we pull together to get through it?

Professor Anne Barlow led the study, and she said that couples that lasted throughout the years were a "good fit" and knew how to handle tough times together as a team.

“Of course every relationship is different, and it is important that couples build relationships that are meaningful to them, but we found thriving relationships share some fundamental qualities,” Barlow said. “Mostly the couple have chosen a partner with whom they are a ‘good fit’ and have ways of successfully navigating stressful times. These 10 critical questions can help people as they decide if they are compatible with a person they are considering sharing their life with and flag the importance of dealing with issues when they arise as well as of nurturing the relationship over time.”

Husbands Consistently Orgasm More Than Their Wives, New Study Shows

I've never been married, but I've been in long-term serious relationships. And with familial and social pressures to walk down the aisle, I often think about what my life would've been like if I had married my ex-boyfriends, and all I can say is...

Thank God we broke up!

The men I dated were great guys, but during the relationships, I knew we weren't a perfect match. After we broke up, my exes shortly married someone else. One of them married the woman who I thought he was secretly in love with the entire time we were dating, so bullet dodged!

I hope that this disclosure doesn't make you all think I'm cynical about marriage. In fact, the opposite is true. I believe that marriage between two compatible people can bring a lifetime of love and companionship, and because of my faith, I'm waiting to find a love match like Barack and Michelle instead of a bitter partnership like Donald and Melania. 

Every time I see the First Couple in public, I can just feel Melania's disdain for her husband, and apparently, there are lots of bad marriages that skew in favor of the man instead of the woman, according to a new study from Brigham Young University. Researchers at BYU found that 49% of married women said they consistently orgasm during sex while 87% of the male respondents reported that they orgasmed. 

The BYU study took data from 1,683 heterosexual newlywed couples, and the majority of men said that they came during sex but their wives were not as sexually satisfied. The couples were asked about their own thoughts as well as what they believed their partners thought, and the researchers found 43% of dudes incorrectly guessed how often their wives orgasmed during sex.

Hopefully, for everyone out there reading this, your marriages are better than Donald and Melania's, and if not, at least there's internet porn and day drinking. 😁

6 Celebrities Fired for Being Racist

Conservative actress Roseanne Barr sent out a shocking tweet in June, comparing an African-American woman to a monkey, and ABC swiftly acted by canceling her program, “Roseanne.” Barr has tried to defend herself by constantly tweeting how unfair the firing was, but that hasn't been enough. She still doesn't get her show back, but at least she can sleep at night knowing she isn't the only star to have fallen into hot water after saying something racist.

The following are six instances where celebrities or those in power were fired because they couldn’t keep their bigotry under wraps.

1. Roseanne Barr

Roseanne Barr is a successful comedian whose hit show “Roseanne” was rebooted on ABC this year, and it was such a success that the network immediately ordered a second season. 

The second season was about to start production this summer when Barr said she took too much Ambien and sent out a racist tweet, comparing Valerie Jarret to a monkey from the “Planet of the Apes” movies. Jarret, a former aide to President Barack Obama, is African-American, and Barr’s racial slur was widely condemned. Hours after the tweet was sent, ABC stated that they were canceling her program.

2. Paula Deen

Paula Deen was famous for her southern cooking and putting butter in almost everything she made, but her career ended after it was discovered she had made racist comments to her staff. The revelation came to light when a former employee sued her for discrimination in 2013, and once people knew Deen freely used the N-word, she was dropped from the Food Network and her numerous endorsement deals.

3. John Galliano

Fashion designer John Galliano was the head of Christian Dior in 2011, but he was fired after a drunken video of him blasting Jewish people surfaced online. In France where he lived, making antisemitic comments is illegal, and he was found guilty and sentenced to pay a fine. He has since worked with the Anti-Defamation League, and in 2013, he was welcomed back in the fashion world.

4. Donald Sterling

Billionaire Donald Sterling once owned the Los Angeles Clippers. However, his basketball career ended in 2014 when TMZ published a leaked recording of him telling his mistress not to bring black people to any games.

“It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with black people. Do you have to?” Sterling said in the recording. “You can sleep with [them]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on that … and not to bring them to my games.”

The racist rant angered the NBA, which banned him from the league for life and gave him a $2.5 million fine. Because of the ban, Sterling was forced to sell the team.

5. Justine Sacco

While not a celebrity, Justine Sacco had a high-profile job at IAC at the age of 30, but her life changed when she sent out an offensive tweet. Before boarding a plane to Africa, she tweeted out, “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” to her few hundred followers, not realizing that her tweet would soon be seen by millions. 

During her hours in the air, Twitter users called for her firing and dubbed her a racist, and after she landed, she soon learned that she was terminated from her job and an infamous internet cautionary tale.

6. Charlie Sheen

Charlie Sheen has been known to be a drug user and playboy, but his wild antics ended his career on the hit show “Two and a Half Men” when the actor went on an antisemitic tirade against the show’s creator, Chuck Lorre. Sheen was fired and replaced by Ashton Kutcher, but he later found another show to star on–“Anger Management.”

People Can Tell Whether You're Rich or Poor By Looking At Your Face

What can you tell just by looking at someone's face? Can you tell where they're from? Where they've been? How smart they are? How old they are? Their life's history?

Well, a new study says that we all make snap judgments about people's wealth, and apparently, those judgments are generally correct. 

A study published in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that people can tell whether you're rich or poor just from looking at your face. Basically, having money means people have more comforts in life, and not worrying about financial security frees people from anxiety and allows them to live happier lives. In contrast, people who are poor are constantly struggling to make ends meet, and this leads to high stress and often labor-intensive work that shows up on their faces.

For the study, R. Thora Bjornsdottir and Nicholas O. Rule of the University of Toronto showed students gray-scale pictures of 80 white men and 80 white females. The people in the photos had neutral expressions. Half of the people made six-figure salaries and were deemed wealthy while the other half made less than $35,000 a year and were determined to be working class.

The students surveyed were of various races, and they correctly guessed the subjects' wealth 68% of the time, which was a better odd than random chance. 

"People are not really aware of what cues they are using when they make these judgments," Bjornsdottir said to the University of Toronto. "If you ask them why, they don't know. They are not aware of how they are doing this."

When researchers showed participants photos of the people visibly happy, they were unable to gauge wealth, signaling that folks equate happiness with having money. 

"Over time, your face comes to permanently reflect and reveal your experiences," Rule told the University of Toronto. "Even when we think we're not expressing something, relics of those emotions are still there."

Teenagers Would Rather Hang out with their Families Than Party, Have Sex

The age that one loses their virginity depends on their maturity level and opportunity, and although I'd like it if everyone waited until after they graduate from high school at least, it is a personal decision that at the end of the day is none of my damn business.

But as I get older and embrace my maternal instincts, I am happy to know that our youth are waiting to engage in sexual relationships on their own. Teen pregnancies are declining and the majority of teens in high school are choosing to PG socialize instead of drink alcohol and have sex.

A new study published by the British Pregnancy Advisory Service said that teenagers are focusing more on their education and future careers instead of partying. In their free time, these motivated kids are studying, spending time online, or hanging out with their families.

Although the research was conducted on teens in the UK, the results mirror statistics in the US, which also has a declining pregnancy rate. Studies have shown that the level of school-provided sex education in the US has declined, but apparently, that doesn't matter. Teens today have the internet to learn about the birds and the bees, and they are shunning stereotypes that they are lazy and sex-crazed. 

BPAS said that many teens today enjoy spending time with their parents, who are mostly from the laid-back Generation X. This close familial bond decreases their desires to go out and romp, and two-thirds of high school respondents said that they never had sex.

The survey also found that teens spent more time interacting with their peers online than in person, and that 70% of teens talked to their friends four or five times a week online. The researchers suggested that young people who socialized in person were more likely to be sexually active, showing that younger humans are just like their parents or grandparents if only they had similar environments.

"The low levels of teenage pregnancy rates may in part be attributed to lower levels of face-to-face interaction between young people and their peers, as opportunities for sexual interaction that could result in a pregnancy are reduced," the report said, according to The Independent. 

Teenagers who hung out with their friends in person were more likely to have multiple sex partners. While this may scare parents, teens who socialize in person tend to be more emotionally mature, hence the sex, and they are better prepared for the independence of college. In contrast, teens, who are close with their parents and spend hours online, may not be as emotionally mature.

“If you look at the big picture, it’s not that they’re doing more good things or more bad things overall,” San Diego State University psychology professor Jean Twenge told Time. “It’s just that they’re less likely to do all kinds of things adults do, and there definitely is a trade-off there.”

HIV-Positive Gay Men Can Now Have Sex Without Condoms

A new study has found that gay men with HIV can now have sex without condoms. Thanks to daily pills, they no longer have to live in fear that they will transmit the uncurable virus to their lovers, according to the Daily Mail. 

British and Danish researchers studied men who were given antiretroviral therapy (ART) for eight years, and they found that they became sexually non-infectious thanks to the medication. The participants of the trial showed no evidence of transmission of HIV, which can become AIDS if left untreated. 

ART treatments include daily pills that stop the virus from replicating. It does not cure people of HIV but it does reduce the risk of transmitting the virus. 

Researchers from the University College London and the University of Copenhagen studied 1,000 gay couples from different countries between 2010 and 2018. The couples reported having sex thousands of time without condoms and never once transmitting HIV to non-HIV positive lovers. 

"What’s most important now is ensuring that we continue to share this message and educate people as far and wide as possible, to help improve the lives of people living with HIV across the world," medical director of the Terrence Higgins Trust, Michael Brady, said.

An estimated 36.7 million adults and children have HIV worldwide. 

What is Aftercare in BDSM?

Most people are aware of some of the acts of play in BDSM--the whips, the ropes, the handcuffs, etc... But another key element to the practice is aftercare, which is checking in with the submissive after the scene is over to make sure they're okay. Aftercare is important because you can't just inflict violence or mental anguish on someone and then just leave them alone afterward. Even though BDSM is consensual, the submissive may end up hating the lifestyle if they're not given any sweet with the sour, if you know what I mean. 

Aftercare involves physical and emotional attendance, and like scenes of play, aftercare is different for different couples. But some common forms of aftercare include cuddling, talking, taking a bath together, or giving a massage. 

During BDSM scenes, a slew of endorphins are released, filling the sub with an incredible high. But when the play is over, they experience something of a crash, which sometimes is as intense as a drug withdrawal, and that's why the Dominant needs to perform aftercare to ease the submissive's fragile mental and physical state. 

Getting sad after sex happens to people even outside of intense BDSM sessions. A study from 2015 found that nearly 46% of women surveyed experienced anxiety or sadness at least once in their lives after sex. The reason for this is the hormonal change caused by orgasm combined with neglect after the act. 

So for those who want to venture into the world of BDSM or who'd rather just stick with vanilla, don't forget kindness after sex. There's actually scientific proof of why a bit of love can go a long way after the deed. 

Harvey Weinstein's Criminal Lawyer Shares Thoughts on #MeToo

Last year, Harvey Weinstein hired criminal attorney Blair Berk to help him fight charges of sexual impropriety, and last month, Berk spoke to Haaretz and talked about how the #MeToo movement has gone too far.

In October, the New York Times ran a piece documenting Weinstein's alleged years of sexual harassment and assault, and after the story broke, the movie producer was accused by dozens of women of sexual misconduct. Eventually, he was charged with rape in New York state, and he has criminal investigations against him pending in London and Los Angeles. 

Weinstein’s hiring of Berk was a smart decision because she is known as an attorney that celebrities can rely on. She has represented Mel Gibson, Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, and numerous other A-listers, and she is currently the lawyer for Sylvester Stallone, who is also facing sexual misconduct claims.

Berk said that she is a feminist but that she thinks it's important that women take accountability for their own actions, such as exchanging sex for jobs with high-powered men. 

“As a feminist, this is a conversation that is important to me to have,” Berk said. “We deal with terms like sexual harassment and we talk inappropriate behavior, but we don’t discuss [the terms], not least because it’s complicated. True, we shouldn’t have someone with too much power in a workplace, for instance, abusing his power to be vulgar or to put his hand on someone who’s not interested, but it’s important we don’t conflate this with rape. These actions are not rape. They’re also not criminal. They’re certainly actions that need to be discussed, but not necessarily something that needs to be incriminating.”

Berk said that women who engaged in sexual acts in order to get something sometimes regret that decision but that should not be viewed as criminal because it is currently not a law.

“One of those very uncomfortable truths is that there are women who engaged in sexual contact with a man in situations when they’re not necessarily attracted to that man but that more powerful man was offering them something they want, advancement, the Golden Globe, something they want, and they decided to have that sexual encounter in order to get that. Intentionally, consensually and later regret that they did that. We can decide that that is a fundamentally coercive act and should criminalize it, but right now it’s not a crime and I believe it shouldn’t be a crime,” Berk said.

Berk said that the current climate is treating women like children, not responsible for their own actions.

“I believe one of the dangerous things about what’s happening here is we’re treating women as children. We are infantilizing women. It’s a thing that as feminists we don’t want to do, which is to claim that a woman doesn’t have the ability to choose,” Berk said. “And while it’s uncomfortable and while it’s a difficult truth people getting something from someone more powerful whether if the currency of sex, or whether if of doing something outside of their work in order to curry favor that’s not okay that there’s expectation from a more powerful person, but it’s not a crime. Unfortunately, in this moment we’re doing things that blur those lines.”

Berk's comments are interesting to me because I think she is presenting valid arguments that consensual acts should not be criminalized just because a person feels regret afterward, but I also think that men in power should not hunt for dates in the workplace. The reason for that is that women who say yes are usually rewarded with promotions or better treatment, and women who decline are punished by being dismissed or ignored. This unfair system would not exist if dating was banned in corporate environments or strict rules were in place and enforced. 

While the idea of banning dating in the workplace sounds extreme, technology giant Intel has been practicing this policy for years, and it has been overwhelmingly successful. The reason that it works is that people in all positions are required to adhere to it, and knowing that it exists and is enforced consistently stops any potential impropriety. 

In late June, Intel's CEO Brian Krzanich admitted that he had a consensual relationship with an underling, and he resigned from his post because the company policy was to not allow any non-lateral dating. The company's rules were outlined and no one, not even the CEO, was exempt, and this strict but fair rule curbed sexual harassment and enabled the employees at the company to work productively without the added stress of sexual politics. 

As people familiar with my blog have probably noticed, I am very much in favor of people embracing their sexuality, but one's sexual self and one's professional self generally can be and should be two separate entities. 

Netflix Really Is Killing Your Sex Life

We are in a weird age where people are having less sex. This leads to physical and emotional frustration and a lack of intimacy, and experts have been trying to guess why this generation is loving less than the generations before.

And one new study thinks Netflix is to blame. 

Or more specifically, the internet and streaming.

Researchers at Lancaster University said that between 10pm-11pm is the peak time for intimacy, but people nowadays are using that hour to surf the internet or bingewatch Netflix, Fox News reported.

"Overall, the paper argues that a better understanding of how everyday practices are shifting, in concert with the provision and design of online services, could provide a basis for the policies and initiatives needed to mitigate the most problematic projections of Internet energy use," the study's abstract stated.

The study found that most people are viewing the content on their phones, which allows them to be anywhere viewing, including the bed. Can you imagine how annoying it is to be in bed with your lover and he or she's just watching YouTube, showing no interest in you? No wonder no one is getting busy.

Using Tinder Won't Lead to Casual Sex

I talked earlier about how casual sex doesn't truly exist, not because random hookups don't happen but because our bodies naturally attach to our lovers during sex. But despite biology wanting us to bond, people still try to sex up strangers with the intention of loving and leaving. 

But for those who want one night stands, where do you get them? Some people think Tinder is the way, but a new study says the app gives you no better a chance of having casual sex than hitting on a rando at a bar. 

Researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology published a paper in Personality and Individual Differences. The group surveyed 641 students and asked them about their Tinder usage. They found out that Tinder swipers who wanted casual sex weren't successful, proving that just because you want something doesn't mean you'll get it.

Tinder has a reputation for being a hookup app, but the study found that most people liked to swipe because they were bored. Women reported that they liked using the app to affirm that they were attractive, based on how many matches and messages they got, but they weren't actually down to fuck as the men of Jersey Shore like to say. 

The study found that straight men on the app were trying to get short-term relationships or hookups, but alas, like in real life, most women just weren't interested. 

Does Life Have Meaning Without Sex?

Growing up I was influenced by Chinese culture, which is unabashedly money-obsessed, and I was repeatedly told by my parents that earning cash was one of the most important things in life. As a kid, I loved writing, the arts, and TV and movies; but my family steered me away from my passions because they didn't believe they would be lucrative endeavors for me.

This value contrasted with those typically* found in the Midwest where I grew up, which seemed to place an emphasis on simple joys.

As I matured and ventured out on my own as an adult, I became obsessed with the concept of happiness. Was money the key to happiness? Was fame? Was relationships? I've realized that all aspects combine to create a full picture, but one component that is often not talked about is sexual pleasure.

One doesn't just have to be a hedonist to value sex. Psychologist Todd Kashdan at George Mason University said that sex is actually an important aspect of a person's well-being. In North America, sexuality is suppressed and shunned due to our Puritanical origins, but Kashdan and his team found that sex increases our meaning in life, Psychology Today reports. 

Kashdan studied sex and its meaning by recruiting 152 college students who disclosed personal details such as their relationship status, intimacy levels, and how long they stay in relationships. Each night before sleeping, the students answered a series of questions about the meaning of life and sexual activity, and from their answers, Kashdan saw a correlation between positive moods and sexual activity.

Kashdan saw correlation but not causation, and although it is unclear the exact relationship between happiness and sex, the study shows that having sex and being happy usually occur at the same time.

"In other words, the time-lagged analysis suggests that having sex leads to a positive mood and a sense of fulfillment that continues into the next day. This finding is consistent with other studies which have found that the “afterglow” of sex extends for a day or two after the act. The researchers don’t deny the likelihood that happy, fulfilled people have more sex. Rather, they simply contend that it’s sexual activity that makes people happy and fulfilled, not that their happiness and fulfillment leads them to have more sex," Psychology Today wrote.

80% of Teenage Girls Suffer Mental Illness After Sexual Assault

Safety for men and women is one of the most important things that I value, which is why I write so much about consent. People need to ask permission before engaging in any type of sexual activity, but predators choose to violate this basic tenant of human decency and they take what isn't theirs. 

Sexual assault leaves victims with lasting emotional scars, and a new study found that 80% of teenage girls who were sexually assaulted suffer from crippling mental health problems at least months after the attack, The Guardian reported. 

Teen victims suffer from PTSD, anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders after an attack, and these problems last at least four to five months after the horrific incident occurs. Victims who were abused in childhood carry emotional problems throughout their adulthood, the research also showed. 

The study was conducted by the University College London, and it surveyed girls between the age of 13 and 17.

“Although poverty and social vulnerability are well-recognized risk factors for sexual assault, few studies have examined this among adolescents, or looked at the impact of vulnerability on mental health outcomes following sexual assault,” the lead author, Dr Sophie Khadr said to The Guardian. “The study emphasized the double disadvantage of young women who experience sexual assault. Their social vulnerability places them at higher risk of assault, with one in 12 reporting a further assault within four to five months."

If there are any sexual assault victims who are reading this blog, please know that you are not alone. Report the abuser to authorities, and talk to someone you can trust. For more information, contact the non-profit RAINN

Everything Newbies Want To Know About BDSM

For anyone interested in trying kink, they may decide to venture away from vanilla and enter the world of BDSM. In the BDSM community, people actually meet up and host parties where folks can participate and watch each other perform, but you can also just have fun in your own home.

There aren't really a ton of rules that govern how people must behave except for one fundamental one--participants must always consent to what is happening to them. An example of consent and not consent is this--When someone meets Gordon Ramsay knowing he likes to yell and they ask him to call them an Idiot Sandwich and he does, that's consent. Those people know what they're going to get, they ask for it, and they wanted it. In contrast, when women dated former New York AG Eric Schneiderman and he randomly punched them in the face, that's not consent. They went into the situation expecting one thing, and he delivered something completely different (and violent) without asking or receiving permission. 

With the main concept of consent in mind, let's talk about other BDSM basics. 

What does BDSM Stand for?
Sexual beings are either vanilla or into BDSM. Vanilla is a term used in the community to describe regular sex, which most people are into. Intercourse, oral sex, and anal sex can be a lot of fun and done in different positions and locations, but that doesn't make it kinky necessarily. 

What makes sex kinky is when people take it to another level. People who engage in BDSM tend to find vanilla sex boring. BDSM players enjoy exploiting power dynamics, with the principle that in a relationship no person is actually equal. One is in charge and the other follows, and in BDSM, these roles are explicitly defined.

BDSM stands for bondage and discipline, Dominance and submission, and sadism and masochism. These roles often intertwine but also may not. For instance, sometimes bondage and discipline can mingle with sadism and masochism, but Dominance and submission does not always require restraints or bondage. 
  • Bondage and discipline: If you think of the Red Room in 50 Shades of Grey, that's an example of what goes on in bondage and discipline. People who like this type of play may wear leather or latex; own whips, ropes, or masks; and may have their own sex dungeons. Bondage and discipline acts can inflict pain, but pain is not the primary purpose. Bondage and discipline acts such as tying someone up or flogging them are done for restraining and training, and the turn-on is the idea of controlling someone or submitting to them. 
  • Dominance and submission: Dominance and submission is where one person leads the relationship while his or her bottom follows. D/s does not always include pain. It's main focus is the power dynamic. For instance, in a female-led relationship, a man willingly agrees to do whatever his Domme asks for him. For this type of submissive man, he enjoys serving a strong woman and letting her take the lead, and that's how he receives pleasure. 
  • Sadism and masochism: A sadist enjoys inflicting pain and the masochist enjoys receiving it. Pain can either be physical and can be as light as a slap or as intense as drawing blood. Pain can also be emotional in the form of humiliation or even blackmail. An example of sadism/masochism include splaying with knives, needles, or consensual emotional abuse. It's often tied into bondage and discipline. 
How can one start a BDSM relationship? 
50 Shades of Grey gets some slack from people in the community because Christian Grey stalked Anastasia Steele until she gave into his lifestyle, and this concept gives the false idea that it's ok to coerce someone into a BDSM relationship. And since consent is the number one tenet in the BDSM world, it is not ok to manipulate or force someone into doing anything sexual, especially if those acts involve any type of emotional or physical harm. After all, there are some things such as name-calling or violence that are sexy when requested but terrifying or offensive when sprung out of the blue. And BDSM should be fun, not something that makes you or your partner feel bad or gross. 

So if you are interested in exploring kink, you can go onto specific kink websites such as FetLife to make friends, or you can search for BDSM dates on the app Kinkd. On mainstream dating apps, BDSM people have good luck on Okcupid when they explicitly state on their profiles what they are looking for and what roles they like. 

If you want to learn more about the lifestyle in person, some professional dungeons offer classes or you can book sessions with pro-Dominants or Dominatrixes. For instance, if you are in Los Angeles, I recommend checking out the Den of Inequity which is owned by Mistress Tara Indiana. 

Remember, it's important to be upfront with what you like and want. Don't wait until after you go on a few vanilla dates and end up back at someone's apartment to reveal that you like acting like a dog or want to kick someone in the balls. That'll more likely just end up in awkwardness for you and your date, and you're not going to get what you want. So stop wasting time! 

Lastly, I strongly advise people looking for BDSM play partners to never approach people at work or school. I'll go into sexual harassment more in other posts, but basically, power dynamics already exist in those environments and adding a sexual element complicates things and blurs the line of consent. 

Sexual Harassment Can Only Be Stopped by Company Culture, Not By Outing Bad Men

A few years ago, I took a computer class at a local community college, and I quit after the professor Googled me during class and put the results on the projector. There's a model who shares my name, and he thought she was me. She was wearing her underwear, and he put that photo up and asked me in front of everyone, "Is this you? Nice!"

It wasn't, but even if it was... why did he think that was okay? Why was he Googling me in his spare time? And why did he share those results with my classmates who were like WTF?

Before the projector incident, I thought he had a crush on me, but I tried to ignore the feeling. He was strangely nice to me but rude to almost everyone else, and he'd private message me personal questions. Not sexual, but still weird.

After the projector incident, I reported him to the school and stopped going to class. He found me on social media and asked me why I hadn't said goodbye. I was terrified. 

Years later, I decided to study computers again by enrolling in a coding bootcamp at a prestigious university. The first few weeks were great, but then a new student advisor was hired and he decided to start sending me flirty private messages. I was grossed out again.

But what bothered me the most about the second guy was that his behavior emerged after the #MeToo movement exploded. Numerous inappropriate men were ousted or reprimanded for harassing women, but this guy still thought he could creep on me and I'd be cool with it. And obviously, I wasn't.

I reported the second guy too, and I am happy to say that the prestigious university actually took action. I didn't think they were perfect with their process, but they removed this guy from my classroom and made efforts to stop him from making me uncomfortable. The community college, on the other hand, told me that the projector professor was the only person who taught the class, so I couldn't be transferred, and they refused to give me a refund. They also told me that he wasn't guilty of sexual harassment, and they sent me a formal letter with this conclusion.

My two contrasting experiences made me realize that toxic behaviors can happen anywhere, but how management treats them can greatly affect a person's experience. This is in line with a new study from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. This study said that it wasn't enough for companies and schools to fire individual offenders. The study said that instead, culture is what curbs sexual harassment, meaning if people know that bad behavior isn't tolerated they are less likely to do it in the first place.

“It’s not about rooting out the bad apples; we need to focus on the whole barrel,” Lilia Cortina, a professor of psychology and women’s studies at the University of Michigan, told The Huffington Post. “When organizations really cultivate a climate that makes clear it will not tolerate sex harassment, employees are much less likely to engage in sexual harassment."

The organization said that companies that take sexual harassment seriously and hand down consequences to offenders create atmospheres that scare offenders from misconduct. On the flip side, companies that look the other way send a message to everyone that sexual harassment is okay. 

For the report, over 20 academics reviewed research from the past two decades and they commissioned a study to interview women in the sciences about their work experiences. And as a part-time student in the computer field, I was two for two when it came to gross men bothering me while trying to learn in that environment, so I was not surprised that the study concluded that the sciences had a major sexual harassment problem.

The #MeToo movement which exploded last year after the fall of Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein really resonated with me because I knew that I wasn't alone when it came to feeling preyed upon at work or school. However, it still saddened me to know that the problem was so pervasive. And while terrible men may always exist, knowing that they are a problem and not tolerating their misconduct is a major step in making professional spaces a safer place. 

What Do Americans Fantasize About Sexually?

If you ask people about their career dreams, most people will happily tell you what they are in a heartbeat. But if you ask them to share their sexual fantasies, they'll probably clam up and balk. Even though a career dream is just as personal as a sex dream, most people are not comfortable revealing that side to their friends. Some people aren't even comfortable acknowledging their sex fantasies with themselves or their lovers!

But luckily sexpert Justin Lehmiller exists. He asked 4,000 Americans about their fantasies, and he compiled his research in the new book "Tell Me What You Want: The Science of Sexual Desire and How It Can Help You Improve Your Sex Life."

"People feel that their sexual fantasies are weird or abnormal," Lehmiller told USA Today."One of the big things the book does is that it’ll help people realize they’re not alone in having these fantasies.

Lehmiller said that the number one sex fantasy for Americans is having a threesome. And for those who want threesomes, apparently, the best way to get one is to be rich (more info here). Respondents also revealed that they all are interested in BDSM, which may explain why so many people read this blog....

[People wanting threesomes] stems from what sex researchers refer to as the Coolidge Effect, which is the idea that we tend to grow bored with sexual routines and need to introduce novelty in order to maintain arousal and excitement. Group sex is one of the ways people can easily interject the novelty they crave," Lehmiller told USA Today. 

For people who haven't tried BDSM yet but are interested, check out this post about finding out what role excites you the most. 

How Can Zentai Suits Be Used for Sexual Pleasure?

Photo courtesy of Youtube
By now, I am sure you've seen the colorful full body suits that cover a person's face. If you're in the US, you've probably seen them at sporting events or Halloween. But did you know that those suits are called Zentai and originated in Japan? And did you know people use these suits to have freaky-deaky sex?

In the Zentai BDSM community, lovers enjoy the feel of the suits because they are tight and silky-feeling and the face covering adds a sense of anonymity. Zentai lovers typically do bondage activities such as tying each other up with ropes, wearing dog collars, strapping each other into devices, etc. For more examples, check out Bound in Zentai. 

Photo courtesy of Bound in Zentai.
Zentai suits are made of lycra, spandex, cotton, wool, metallic fiber or lycra, and they started off in solid colors but are now available in patterns. Suit wearers say that Zentai allows them to become something alien-like, which turns them on.

ABC News in Australia spoke to Zentais in 2016 who said that they loved how the suits gave them the opportunity to escape from their everyday lives. Essentially the suits allowed them to wear a second skin or to be someone else. The people interviewed didn't talk about sex, but they said that they wear Zentai underneath their regular clothes or go out in public anonymously wearing the suit with the full mask. 

"My family is conservative. They like me to be quiet and feminine but in secret I wear all over tights and let loose," a student named Yukinko said. "I'm a different person wearing this. I can be friendly to anyone and I feel as if I can do anything."

In Tokyo as of 2016, there were 3,000 people in the Zentai community, and the number is growing.