Dr. Tracy's Advice Column

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Bashful Bi
Sex and Religion
For Love not Money

Bashful Bi

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I'm 28 female INTP 160 lbs and 5'9"...ok, IQ 142+. Lefty, no ambidextrous... sexual orientation= ????? Big blank.

I strongly suspect that I'm bisexual. Now that I've decided to come out of the closet a bit about my feelings, how do I really know? I come from a long line of homophobics and I'm working very hard on that, but what if I were to (finally) be successful with another woman only to panic once we were finally in bed? I feel very turned on by other women and recognize a pattern of this from puberty. Now I get crushes on all my friends and I am just basically in a whilrwind of desire and confusion.

There is presently a new lady in my life who I feel a real attraction to and seem to have an uncanny amount in common with. How do I proceed? I need everyday friends too but I scare them off. I want her, I've decided this, but where do I start? I don't even know how to tell if she's gay or straight or bi. She's married, but so am I. I don't want to interrupt her life in any way, but I do want her. My own husband has given me some consent in the matter. Help!!! If I don't do something soon, I might lose a potential friend too. I want her rather badly. ( I can hardly look into her eyes when she talks to me because I'm afraid she'll see what's in mine.) She's *very* cute. All I can think about is kissing her or seeing her face light up with passion. I think about her skin and her eyes, and how she might look undressed..... I've never been with a woman, though I fell in love with my best friend when I was 22. She and I never made it off the ground and it was because of my own fear.

I hope I don't blow this one.

Dear Wannabe Bi,

Although you have decided to come out a bit, for a woman it's always a sort of mystery since it's harder to recognize another kindred soul. So your question is, how can I tell who's hot and who's not?

One way is "the look" and knowing what it is and how to recognize it. Gay women give each other a sly penetrating look that says "yes." If you've never seen it or don't know how to do it (the look), then you should visit a gay bar for women. Hang around and soak up the ambiance. See how it feels to you.

You'll see women all over giving each other "the look" and perhaps someone will give it to you. Should you dance or start a conversation over a drink, ask one of the women to show you the look, and explain to you how to use it.

Then you'll be able to give your friend the look, and find out if she's interested without making any physical moves on her. Trying to kiss someone who's not ready is like picking fruit before it's ripe. It won't taste good.

In addition to learning "the look," you might want to ask your dream woman about her fantasies. Mention (casually) about reading that more than 50% of women have bi-sexual fantasies. Ask her, does she think the percent is that high? Tell her you've had bisexual fantasies. Ask her if she's ever had any thoughts about being with another woman.

That way, you're only revealing each other's fantasies, not all your desires. Women's fantasies of making love to another woman tend to lean toward soft touching and gentle kissing and fondling as opposed to men's hard-driving, sometimes rough heterosexual lovemaking.

From fantasies it's only a small step to realities.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Sex and Religion

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I am a college student and an athlete. I have been involved in a very serious relationship for 6 years. We went out a little in high school but didn't get real serious until my freshman year at college. We have been very close and happy for our entire time at college. Sure, we've had problems butwe always got through them until now.

My title probably makes you want to know what the religions are, basically I was raised episcopalian, but am now an agnostic. She is a member of the LDS church.

About 5 months ago she started to go back to church(she had stopped for a while) and she all of a sudden stopped having sex with me. I assume because of the church. This was a problem for me. While I think sex in uncommited relationships are wrong, I felt like ours was very committed. The big ego jerk I was, I then decided to date other people. Well I quickly realized that no one would compete with my long time girlfriend, she and I clicked better than anyone I have met in my entire life.

So I decided to put everything I had into this relationship. Just last week, though, she said maybe I was right and we should break up. Well I continued to pursue her and talk to her and work to bring her back. I am starting to suceed, but now I almost feel as though the relationship is starting to go one-way, and that's not good. I am worried I have lost her.

My position is that religion is not as important as my relationship with her, but I can't join a religion I don't believe in and fake it. I have confronted her with this and now she says she is not sure what she wants.

I am sorry this is so long, I don't know what to do.

Dear Agnostic Lover,

The LDS Church, as well as many others, does not approve of sex outside of marriage. While some churches tolerate members taking a casual approach to religion, the LDS Church has more of a reputation for taking hold of their members, always keeping a part of their members' minds with the Church, laying down rules for living, and enforcing marriage within the Church. This may be part of why you shun organized religion, but it has a powerful draw for other people. It could be that this aspect of LDS is already deeply ingrained in your girlfriend. I'm surprised that you managed to be together 6 years considering the extreme difference in your beliefs.

So, even if you manage to pry your girlfriend away from the Church, part of her will always be with it. She may always be torn between you and the Church, and that will cause uneasiness in your relationship. You will never have all of her, and she may never be comfortable with having left the church for you.

Questions for you to answer are, "Do I love her enough to accept her religious beliefs? Am I willing to forego sex until marriage if that's the only way we can be together? Or are my beliefs more important than our relationship?"

Her religion is a part of her, and unless you're willing to accept that part too, you should find someone whose belief system matches yours.

The issue is yours, as well as hers. If you decide to go along with her religion, you should know that "to pursue her and talk to her and work to bring her back" is the wrong approach to getting her back. Read "Why People Love" in my Library.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

For Love not Money

Dear Dr. Tracy,

Here is my problem. For one year I was an escort and I didn't really like it but I was not forced and I did not get into drugs. I was thinking of quitting when I got a client, Jack, we exchanged phone numbers and became great friends. He helped me stop the escort service and put me back on my feet. This happened over a period of 6 months and we fell in love. We are now living together and have been having a wonderful time together. I love him very much and I know he loves me.

The thing is that sexually I have a hard time. I don't know if it's because of what I did or if it's normal to feel like this after you get out of that scene?

Dear Former Escort,

Getting out of the other life into a totally straight life is often more difficult than it seems. The easy money is always tempting, and since you know how, it'll be in the back of your mind for a long time. I've counseled many women in your situation, and even years later, after they've been married and had kids and settled down, the kids need braces and they think, "It would be an easy $200 if I just..." Eventually, though, this thought will fade and you'll look back on your earlier days with a giggle.

In the meantime, you have to fight the urge to look at every man as a potential customer, a sucker who will give you money.

Yes, it's normal for women who've always been paid for their company to not enjoy sex in a normal situation. Part of it is missing the money, the excitement, and the thrill of pulling it off safely once more. If you can't get into normal sex, you could pretend you're getting paid a lot, do your act, and hope that the real emotions kick in. But it's better to learn to get off on the real rewards, like knowing that there's someone who really cares for you, who treats you like a person instead of an object, who will be there for you, and who you're lucky to have in your life. All of which has to be freely given, and isn't available in that other scene.

You will find new self-esteem and pleasures in your new life if you give it time. Congratulations on your escape. Some women never make it. Hang in there.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Submitting a Question to this column

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(Featured art from cover of Letting Go, by Zev Wanderer and Tracy Cabot, published by "Bitan" Publishers, Tel-Aviv, Israel)
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