A Woman Questions Her Lack of Sexual Desire

Dear Liz,

I stumbled upon a question (dated 11/28/2015, Why Don’t I feel Sexual Attraction?) and question that with myself. I’m 53 years old, divorced (two grown children) and have had several unsuccessful relationships since then. I sympathize with the other reader, as I also don’t “get” it. I’ve experienced deep love in my heart and mind, but I have never experienced an innate desire to take my clothes off with another person. I’ve always had sex with my past boyfriends/ex-husband out of love for what they physically needed, but because I didn’t understand how to match what they felt, they were disappointed. And I was equally frustrated because I didn’t feel like I was “missing out” on anything – you can’t miss/long for what you don’t desire. I will say this though – I find that some sexual acts are a very peculiar way to express/show love. And I could never understand a partner’s insistence on “giving” me an orgasm when my body wasn’t wanting one. If my body is at peace, why disrupt that peacefulness only to make me work extra hard for the orgasm, so that I could go back to being peaceful – totally unnecessary.

Thank you,
Equally Confused
Continue reading

College Student Silenced by Professor’s Academic Freedom

Dear Liz,

I have a professor who has recently been talking about a sexual assault case. The perpetrator was a woman and a school guidance counselor who plead guilty to four counts of felonious sexual assault. The victim was a 14-year-old boy who was later diagnosed with PTSD and depression, after the assaults took place. Three college professors wrote a character statement for the defense team supporting the perpetrator. The president of the college fired the professors for supporting her. My professor personally knows the perpetrator and keeps telling my class how she is a good person and how her life is ruined because of this case. He also keeps telling us how it is stupid that the professors got fired. He expressed how this “one bad thing” is going to ruin her life. During this discussion in class I was getting really upset, but I did not feel comfortable speaking up. My roommate and I both have him as a professor, but in different classes. The next day my roommate came back from his class crying, because she was so upset about the conversation he had with her class. Later that day, my professor sent both classes an incredibly biased news article, basically expressing support for the three professors and the defendant. I think it is incredibly ignorant of my teacher to talk about the case the way he has been. However, I do not know how to address this problem. Please help! Continue reading

My Friend Was Raped:  Should She Press Charges?

Dear Liz,

I’ve been friends with a girl for four or five years and we are very close. She’s the type who has always been a bit anxious and nervous, which leads to serious insecurity. Around senior year of high school we became distant and only this past year did we rekindle our friendship. This month I learned that she was ‘date raped’ in high school. She was at a party with a lot of people from our school, and she got so drunk that she blacked out. Someone said they saw this boy drag her up the stairs, because she couldn’t walk, and nobody stopped them, and he took her outside and had sex with her. The only reason my friend found out was because he took a video and posted it on his snapchat story. She has no recollection of this event. I don’t know how many people she told at this time. But now, probably about three years later, she is still coming to terms with it. This month she broke down crying to me, my roommate, and her sister about it. We were all furious at how something like this could have happened. She wonders if she should press charges, but worries that if she does she will have to see the video. I know that you have a background in law so I am wondering if you know anything about the statute of limitations with rape.  What do you think a young lady should do in this situation? Continue reading

Sexual Abuse

Dear Readers:  The person who submitted this question is a young woman—as such, I’ve decided to engage the topic of sexual abuse as it pertains to girls/women.  I am very aware that boys/young men are also victims, and I in no way intend to marginalize their experience by speaking solely about girls/women—I am simply tailoring my response to the circumstances presented to me by this questioner.  

Dear Liz,

I had a horrible relationship with my mother in high school because she was dealing with her newly diagnosed bi-polar disorder.  We would always clash because I didn’t know what she was going through, but now I fear I am turning into her. I see myself lashing out sometimes and getting upset over things that seem to have no substance, and when I do calm down I realize that I shouldn’t have gotten angry. Most of the time I take it out on my boyfriend, and that’s what I fear the most.  I don’t want to upset him over tiny fights and push him away. It’s like I have in my head this “self-fulfilling prophecy” that of course I’m going to turn into my mother—I feel like I’m making that fear come true.  My boyfriend is very supportive of me trying to deal with this situation. He never gets mad at me in return—when I am angry he tries to solve where it is coming from and why.  My worst fear is pushing him away while trying to figure this out. 

I don’t know if this aggression I have is stemming from me thinking I am turning into my mother, or from the sexual abuse I suffered in high school from my first boyfriend at the age of 14. My boyfriend would hit me, cheat on me, and sexually assault me—this was all very frequent for 9 months.  I was so young and sensitive and he was 17 and I didn’t know what to do, so I put up with it.  When I’d tell him I wanted to end it, he would threaten to kill himself.  He finally hit me in public once, and my best friend and her boyfriend saw, which gave me a way out because he got scared that I wasn’t the only one to know anymore. 

While all this was going on with my boyfriend, my mother was dealing with her anger over being raped by her cousin.  When she returned home for a wedding, she saw him and he hugged her as if nothing happened.  It brought up so many emotions for her and she ended up taking it out on me—she would lash out and hit me—it got so bad that my dad and I had to move out for a few months.  I went to a therapist for a while and I thought I had dealt with my pain, but with all these emotions now I’m not sure what to think. I get so angry at little things, like my personal short comings and when things don’t go as planned—it’s starting to affect my life.  I just want to get my anger or whatever seems to be happening to me under control before I turn into my ex or my mom.  I’m lashing out like I did before I went to my counselor in high school.  I’m not sure where to go from here. I don’t know if you have any insight for me, but I’ll wait to hear back.         Continue reading