Lovehacker: We Answer Your Questions About Relationships And Sex

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Welcome to Lovehacker -- Lifehacker's Agony Aunt column where we tackle all things love and sex! Each week our resident romance guru Tegan will answer reader questions and dispense relationship related advice.

Some of us are born to be Agony Aunts.

From adolescence people started gravitated towards me as a confidant and advice dispenser. Although I haven't always understood why, I must admit that I have rather enjoyed it. Putting yourself in someone else's shoes for the greater good is challenging, rewarding and even fun. I even started a gaming and advice podcast with a friend because we were asked so many life advice questions during Twitch streams.

One might assume that advice giving requires a great deal of wisdom. In my experience, they key elements to being an Agony Aunt are empathy, emotional intelligence and having some colourful experiences of your own. Here are just a few things I've dealt with in my romantic life:

  • Failed engagement
  • Gay boyfriend
  • Serial monogamy
  • Long distance relationships
  • Dating in a new city
  • Being the Other Woman
  • Pregnancy
  • Fuck buddies
  • BDSM
  • D/s Relationship
  • Falling in love for real

Perhaps people come to me because they know I can't judge anybody given my track record. I'll make them look better by comparison. However, I prefer to think that it's because I learn from my experiences and can guide others in a more positive direction. The feedback has been great so far, so I must be doing something right.

So here I am -- your Lovehacker. Let me be the co-conspirator who helps steer you through the murky, and oftentimes contradictory, world of modern love and sex.

If you have a question you want to have featured on Lovehacker, you can drop a comment below or email [email protected].


    Dear Aunt Tegan,
    What's the best pickup line you've ever heard?


      Ohhh that's a good one. I bet if I open that up to the office we'll get some great ones. Stay tuned for next week's column!

      Did it hurt?
      Did what hurt?
      When you ascended through the earth's crust of your way up from hell.

    My girlfriend of five months has asked how I'd feel about our relationship opening up (I.E. becoming poly) though she hasn't fully specified what that means for us yet. I don't think I could really define myself this way, and I'm really not sure how this will affect our relationship moving forward.

    What should I be bracing myself for, best and worst case, and is it fair or selfish of me to consider this a dealbreaker?

    How can one learn to do relationships, pretty much from scratch?

    - I don't have a model for one. It happens.
    - I'm pretty socially incompetent in general. #facts
    - 'Fake it till you make it' and various self-helpy books have not been effective
    - Mind-blowing significant breakthrough came last year at age 30 when one of those EAP counsellors suggested telling a rare BF what I wanted him to do (to not flake) instead of breaking up with him. It worked, but then it ended.
    - Note: I'm content with single life. The major incentives to keep trying are 1) to prove to self that I can, and 2) to potentially save on housing in future.
    - On every 1st date, I identify why (& when) any prospective relationship will fail. I've been told this isn't the norm. I've allowed some to proceed for the sake of practice, but curriculum needs work...

    My girlfriend and I have been having pretty great sex for the two months we’ve officially been together. One thing I’ve noticed though is she’s really into talking trash - like, REALLY into it. I mean anyone with some experience knows how to talk dirty, but this is heading into some rough AF territory I’m not 100% comfortable with.

    It’s not that I’m prudish, it’s more I don’t quite know where the line is with this sort of stuff and what she’s expecting from me - it’s getting to the point where I sort of stop responding and she looks kinda disappointed. I don’t want to ruin the atmosphere - how do I bring this up in a non-bang context without causing an issue?

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