A Lady

A Lady

Most Recently: Scrub?

Playing House, Cutting Ties, and Being Alone

I’m engaged to my best friend, a guy who’s always seemed perfect for me. However, during our time together (the better part of a decade) he went back to school. What seemed at the time like an investment in our future has turned into endless unemployment and a terrifying amount of debt. He will never pay it off. He’ll never be able to retire. And he’ll never be able to help support a family. READ MORE

Unmet Demands and the Eternal "Are You Sure You're Sure You're Sure?"

Hey there, I've got a question. My long-term boyfriend and I are absolutely inseparable. We talk about anything and everything, and our communication is great. I'm a very, very sexual person and if something isn't right I'm not afraid to speak up. For the past few months I've had little to no oral sex because he just doesn't do it right. I've been trying to teach him for months. I've even demonstrated on him what I want him to do, to no avail. He just licks it. I've literally said ''Suck on the clitoris'' and he just makes a weird clicking noise, no saliva just dry lips. It makes me angry how bad he is, because it ISN'T hard to do. I've even asked his opinion on bringing a lady friend to the bedroom for an oral sex lesson, but he's not open to it. He's read online articles, watched pornos and everything else we can think of. But he still just isn't getting it! My patience is wearing thin, especially because I make sure that he is pleased. It's not that he's selfish, he *wants* to please me. He's just lacking in the skill department. Thoughts? Advice? READ MORE

Delicate Subjects, Erratic Cycles, and the "Best Friend"

So I know that as women our bodies are always changing, from puberty all the way to menopause with key stops at acne, slowing metabolism, pregnancy, etc., but a few of my friends and I have been experiencing something else that's odd. We're all in our mid-20s (I refuse to call 26 late-20s but I guess it's approaching it) and our periods have become ... slightly erratic. Not crazy, something's-wrong erratic, but some of us have been complaining that our periods aren't quite as dependable as they used to be. Some of us are on the pill, some aren't. I myself have started to notice that, while I used to wake up with my period on a Monday morning (I am one of the people on the pill), for the last couple of months it's been coming in the mid-afternoon, around 3 p.m. or so. One of my best friends has had her period move from a Tuesday afternoon to a Wednesday mid-morning, also on the pill. Both of us are single, so we're not freaking out that we're pregnant, but it's very odd. Another friend not on the pill has noticed the same thing. READ MORE

How the Internet Changed Solo Travel


Mini Ask a Lady: The Thank-You Note

My New Year's resolution! It's to start writing thank-you letters. I don't write thank-you letters because I am a terrible person. And when I think about how I don't write thank-you letters and how that makes me a terrible person, I get this crushing anxiety that totally dissuades me from actually doing anything to change it! (Crushing anxiety would probably be a bit of a melodramatic overstatement, but you know what I'm saying?) So! Do you know any tips for making writing thank-you notes easier/bearable/not just thank-you notes but Christmas cards! By next year, how can I become a person who sends out Christmas cards? I don't know where everybody lives! I don't know where anybody lives! Any suggestions for how I can stop having the worst etiquette? READ MORE

Idle Friends, Gawky Roommates, and the Nap Dream

Last New Year's Eve, a drunken me revealed to a friend (we'll call her Janice) that I thought a guy was really cute (we'll call him Chandler). The next day Janice and her sister made a huge point of informing me that Janice had been interested in Chandler for a while now and knew him since their college days, and blah blah blah, and implied dibs without ever really calling them. Girls are so passive like that. Anyway, I was a nice person and a good friend. I said, "Oh, you should totally go for it! I don't see him very often, I just think he's cute," which was basically true, except that I know that Janice is all wrong for Chandler even if she doesn't see it. She is not his Monica. But whatever. READ MORE

Namesakes and the Air Force

I am 22 years old, I graduated from college a year and half ago, and I have been working in an IR/security job since. I'm also applying to grad school for public policy programs, and I think I have a pretty decent shot at gaining admission. But... for the last few months (which I realize is not that long!), I've had a hankering to join the military. I feel this way for a couple of reasons: a) because the people in our military are freakin' awesome, and I want to help them serve, b) I work (and will probably do so in the future too) in the national security arena, and the military experience can be valuable, and 3) to get some balls-out leadership experience. READ MORE

Frustrating Breakups, Jobs, and Hairstyles

About three months ago my boyfriend of about two years broke up with me.  I know most breakups are messy, but this breakup was extra messy. We're in the same graduate program, 100% of our friends are mutual, we lived together and I had to move, then he tried to get back together, and since then he has been aggressively (and transparently) pretending he's fine by aggressively hitting on/making out with women at social events we mutually attend. The important takeaway is that this guy definitely still has feelings for me.  (Also that he is extremely immature.) We are on friendly terms (in public) at this point basically because otherwise we'll alienate all of our friends. READ MORE

Cleft Lips and Unamusingly Horrible Bosses

My issue, to get right down to it, is that I have a cleft lip.  (It has been repaired and all that, but a repaired cleft still doesn't look exactly like a normal upper lip.) And in the almost-27 years of my life so far, I haven't been able to figure out how much it matters "socially." Like, I'm sort of shy anyway, but I've never had a proper boyfriend, and I can count on one hand the men who have been professedly interested in me, in more than a "well we're in a bar and it's two am and I'd quite like a shag" kind of way. I'm not personally into one-night stands. Consequently, I have had sex precisely once, with a guy who I thought was into me but as it turns out, into me enough to have sex with me but not into me enough to be an item. This has, rightly or wrongly, probably made me a lot more neurotic about my looks. I know that everyone has flaws, and that is often what makes someone attractive, but I think we can all agree that a serious facial deformity is a different matter entirely. READ MORE

Cheat-ees and Friends With Prosecco

So I recently was the cheat-ee in a relationship situation, the 'one-time mistress,' if you will.  This dude and I met one night, hit it off, and spent the rest of the night together, which ended up with him inviting me into his bed — at which point the needle scratched as he told me we couldn't sleep together because he had a girlfriend. READ MORE