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Volume 50 - Issue 17

February 15, 2017
Since 1967



WED. FEB. 15
MENS at 8:00 PM

*If necessary

SAT. FEB. 18
MENS at 7:00 PM

To the rst 500 Ryerson students with a valid OneCard
Check out twitter and facebook at ryersonrams for updates

2 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17

what is love?
hating each other ended up falling in love
BY (cue Etta James At Last).
KAROUN Looking at my parents relationship, I al-
CHAHINIAN ways associated love with being in love, not
yet realizing that it could manifest in other

T he first time I said I love you to a boy

was via email. I was in Grade 7 and we
were in a very serious month-long relation-
forms. Now, I know that it comes with so
many different definitions: from friendship
to charity, love transcends beyond romance
ship that existed strictly over MSN. or intimacy.
Every night, after finishing my home- Ancient Greeksalways ahead of the
work, Id log onto my instant messaging gamehad multiple definitions of love:
account a few times, making sure to sign in from Eros, which represented erotic love
and out a few times to get his attention. or sexual passion, to Philautia, which dealt
Our conversations would consist of class- with self-love. All terms are very differ-
mate drama and what we did during recess ent from each other, but at their core, they
that day. He would send me rose emoticons convey subjective forms of affection. Even
and I would send him back smileys. But one more importantly, they represent the fact
night, I wanted to take it to a whole other that every individual experiences and ex-
level. I crafted the perfect one-sentence presses love in their own unique way. That
email professing my love for him. It read, is what we wanted to capture in this years
and I quote, Hey, I love you. Love & Sex issue.
I was so sure about it. But, in retrospect, Growing up with two sappily romantic
I dont even remember if he said it back. I parents shaped my personal definition of
dont even remember what happened with lovespecifically associated with the Greek
us after that email. All I remember is that I term Praga, which is defined by longstand-
loved him, but didnt know exactly why. ing love, often through the form of mar-
At 12 years old, I thought I had a pretty riage. But experiences shape individuals
clear idea of what love was. It was in every others have their own definitions they live
movie, book, sappy song and TV ad. But it by.
was always the same kind of loveone that By touching on topics like asexuality, sex
was based on romantic attraction. and mental health, and unbalanced relation-
Their eyes would meet across the crowd- ships, we wanted to showcase what love looks
ed room, or theyd bump into each other on and feels like for different people. No clichs.
the street. And when picking up dropped Not a Valentines ad. Just a human look at
belongings, their hands would touch. Or, if what love really is or means to others.
you really wanted to be clich (which hap- And on that note, please enjoy this years
pened often), two people that started off Love & Sex issue.






15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 3


(rs/ or /rs) Derived from the Greek word erasthai, eros refers to the part of love that is driven
by passion and intense sexual desire. This definition is associated with the modern term erotic.

T he snow is falling heavily as my cab driv-
er drops me and my friend off in front
of a Shivaga Thai Massage parlour on Spadina
We sent kink-novice Sierra Bein to an introductory
Japanese bondage workshop. Inside a small studio on
W hile Western rope bondage focuses on
the result, Japanese rope bondage fo-
cuses on the process. Its thought to be medi-
Avenue. Its labeled as traditional Thai Mas- Spadina Avenue, she was welcomed into the Kinbaku tative and connective for both the person
sage, but I know the neighbour Im visiting community. Heres what she learned. tying (the top) and the person being tied (the
will be far from traditional. bottom). Andreas needs to focus in order to
A green, glowing sign lights the way to a keep his partner safe, while his partner needs
glass door. Behind it, theres a narrow stair- pretzels sits open for the taking. We sit on a bamboo-like mat. Behind An- to focus on her breathing and balancing her
case. Im apprehensive, but I climb it anyway. The class is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. We dreas is a long rod with different coloured muscles beneath the visibly tight layers of
A handwritten sign tells me to close the door. wait on leather couches, admiring posters rope hanging from it. Were each handed one rope. She describes the awkward body posi-
Walking down the white, fluorescent-lit from bondage expositions that hang on the about eight metres in length. tions, the stretching and the bending as being
hall we pass a passport and visa service office, white walls. Andreas tells us about school, but Tying the basic knots isnt difficult, but similar to yoga.
the massage place and a tattoo parlour before the conversation quickly shifts back to kink. the two men seemed to be having a tough Shes suspended a few feet off the ground
arriving at an unmarked, open door. I poke Most people in his life dont know about his time. They struggle to twist the rope the and her arms immediately begin to change co-
my head in and am greeted by the instructor sadistic tastes. He often worries that if they right way, and to bring it through the cor- lour under the pressure. Within minutes, they
for the Japanese rope bondage classa broad- found out, he would be labeled as a misogy- rect loops. become the same deep shade of purple as her
shouldered, bearded man with glasses. nist. Youd never guess that nearly half of his You constantly need to make sure theres bodysuit; its a chameleon effect.
This is my first introduction to Japanese classes are women who want to tiealthough, enough slack and that your knots wont slip, Are you comfortable? asks one of the guys
rope bondage. Ive never considered myself to he often ties other men up, too. or else you could be responsible for an irre- in the lesson, audibly worried by the colour.
be on either extreme of the vanilla-kink spec- A few minutes pass before two men who versible injury. The most common injury is We dont use the C-word here, she replies,
trum. But bondage has always seemed beau- look like theyre in their late twenties walk nerve damage. face-down. Andreas changes her position mid-
tiful, artistic and mysterious to me. When I into the room. They seem unsure of them- We start by tying our ankles: two times air, propping up her legs, shaping her differ-
learn that our teacher is a Ryerson student, I selves and compensate with bad rope puns: around, under, over, loop, thread and pull. ently with the pull of a few strings. New knots
feel a bit more at ease. He wishes to remain one about being tied up, one about learning Next, we tie each others wrists, eventually appear and old knots are given a different pur-
anonymous, so Ill call him Andreas. the ropes. For tonight, Andreas says it will feeding the rope through one of the metal pose. In bondage, nothing is meant to be com-
When Andreas was younger, he thought he just be the four of us. Drop-in classes are clips attached to the ceiling. Our arms are fortableits meant to be sustainable.
was a freak for liking bondage, until he met unpredictable, but hes had as many as 18 briefly suspended. Eventually, she spins in my direction, put-
other people in the BDSM (bondage, disci- people at once. A model rushes in, late because of all the ting us face to face. I cant help but smile at
pline, domination, submission, sadism and
masochism) community. Now, these are the
people he spends every Friday evening with,
W e start off with a short history lesson.
According to Andreas, Japanese rope
bondage originated as a torture method for
snow. She sits down with a footlong Subway
sandwich and takes a few bites before chang-
ing into a purple leotard. She has a lotus scar-
her. Admittedly, Im a little jealous of her ex-
perience. She responds with the coy raise of
an eyebrow and a faint smirk.
learning, teaching and partyingall in the
name of kink.
Were a family, he tells me. The salon is
criminals. It was meant to be a way to restrain
and hurt them without causing actual damage
to their bodies because eventually, they would
ification on her upper thigh.
Andreas has tied her up before. Because
she knows her boundaries and understands
A ll flushed and smiling, shes released from
the last strands of rope. She thanks An-
dreas and he thanks her back.
like a home for manyand it definitely re- have to go back to work. Each village had a dif- how her body reacts in the rope, he can I ask her why she enjoys ropes, and why she
sembles one. Dirty dishes are scattered across ferent type of knot to make escaping more dif- check up on her less and instead, concen- likes to be a bottom. Cupping her face in her
the table and a refrigerator hums in the back- ficult, should a criminal find himself in a simi- trate on his knots for the next seven and a hands and inhaling deeply, she looks up at me.
ground. It smells like Febreeze and a bag of lar situation elsewhere. half minutes. You dont need drugs if you do rope.

4 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17


Sexual freedom
their initial sexual temptation, until that night turbate. It was the most embarrassing thing.
at the Brunny. It was the same night he diag- Aziz recalls the time she went into a sex shop

isnt ladylike
nosed himself as a sex addict. to buy a dildo with three of her friends. She reg-
He started putting off studying for a few ularly masturbated, but kept it mostly to herself.
seconds of relief and sneaking away from his As they browsed the shelves, looking at differ-
family to scratch that perpetual itch. Even ten ent shaped toys, one of her friends made a com-
minutes after sex, he wanted it again. ment that made Aziz reevaluate whether she
Sex addiction controls your life. Sexual freedom When you have a sexual addiction, its not should be open about her sexuality. Why cant
means youre in control. Why is the line still blurred? I want to have sex, its, I need to have sex. girls just get dick? Are they desperate? she said.
Thats the distinction.

BY SARAH KRICHEL arlyle Jansen, sex coach and founder of
the sex workshop Good For Her, believes
Sex is like breathing.
its become too easy to label anything outside Its a natural process.

B ahoz Aziz was sitting in the passenger

seat in her mothers car on her way to a
doctors appointment. Her phone buzzed and
Sex addiction was popularized as a medi-
cal term by Patrick Carnes in the 1980s. It is
categorized as a mental disorder and those
of default missionary sex on a Saturday night
between two heterosexual beings as addiction.
There has been progress towards sexu-
How can you breathe
too much?
her fingers jolted. The notification flashed who suffer from it have a consistently high al equality over the past few decades. The
across her screena Facebook comment that sex drive and destructive behaviour patterns. Sexual Revolution in the 60s, where people Since Aziz started writing about sex, she
would shape her sexual freedom for the rest According to Kimberly Moffit Associ- marched, chanted and stood up for sexual says she feels more open about the topic. Sex-
of high school. ates sex therapist Martin Dragan, sex ad- liberty, was a start. But more than 50 years uality is more socially acceptable through the
Two days earlier, Aziz gave a boy a blowjob diction cant be determined by looking at a later, were still showing signs of regression. form of art, she says.
at a friends house party. She was 17 and cu-
rious. At the time, she didnt expect all of the
people in her social networks to have access to
persons kill list. Instead, behaviour can be
labelled as addiction-induced once a persons
sex drive has started to affect their ability
In a recent controversial Christian Today edi-
torial, Gavin Peacock wrote that boys can no
longer be boys as a consequence of the revo-
C oming to terms with your sexuality re-
quires self-reflection, and, according to
Jansen, thats a difficult task for most.
her sex life, but they didall because some boy to complete day-to-day tasks: focusing can lution. He argues that a man who is threatened Theres nothing wrong with sexuality being
decided to slut-shame her on Facebook. become difficult, and it can pose a financial by the sexual conquest of a woman becomes private. But the point is, it shouldnt have to be.
Five years later, shes able to laugh about it. burden for those who overspend on toys, sex insecure, emasculated and in turn, repressed. A woman should be able to walk into a store
But double standards still get her down. workers and porn. Jansen touches on this dangerous mental- and ask a male employee for the best sex toy
It always begins with a bad choice and a In an exclusive relationship, it is very pos- ity. A guy who has lots of sex is never called theyve got. A woman should be able to open-
messy hookup. Its what we tell ourselves, any- sible for an individuals sex drive to become a slut, a woman is, says Jansen. When wom- ly admit that they watch porn twice a day, or
way. For me, three too many shots and one too a preoccupied and compulsive behaviour, fol- en claim our sexual power, its threatening. prefer to masturbate than have sex with their
many tokes on a Friday night is what did it. But lowed by feelings of despair and guiltwhich What someone might see as sexual freedom, partner. A woman should be able to also be as
theres a question that has recurred to me ever would qualify as addiction. someone might say its not ladylike. kinky, dominant, submissive, reserved during
since: what am I really ashamed of? If I have the
liberty to do whatever I want with my sexual-
ity, why should people be allowed to judge me
E duardo Rodriguez, a third-year student,
has experienced these compulsions, as
well as the guilt that follows.
A ziz says this gender-based profiling is still
prominent in her life, even amongst her
progressive peers. The former Eyeopener sex
or as abstained from sex as she wants to be.
Sex is like breathing. Its a natural process.
How can you breathe too much?, says Dragan.
for my choices? The shame is too familiar, but Seven summers ago, Rodriguez made his columnist considers herself sexually liberated, Despite all the walks of shame that take
the cause has yet to be determined. way into the Brunswick House, a once pop- but that goes without a lack of being shamed, place every Saturday morning, I would advise
Historically, sex was limited to two purpos- ular bar on the corner of Bloor St. W. and name-called, bullied and judged. Guys can be the same to all the lovely women and non-
es: reproduction, and pleasing the man. In the Spadina Avenue. He usually went out with very openly sexual with each other, and its binary people: keep that chin up and own it.
1300s, and for centuries to follow, promiscu- his girlfriend, but this time, instead of hav- cool, she says. But girls have to hide it. In high You dont owe an explanation to anyone but
ous women were diagnosed with hysteria. ing his hand wrapped around hers, it was school, you wouldnt dare tell anyone you mas- to your own horny, hysterical and sexy self.
Physicians would violate them to cure them clutching a shot of vodka. Through a sea of

of their urges, while other women would young dancers he spotted Angiean attrac-
be encouraged to get married. Traces of the tive woman in a white dress with matching
past are still evident today: patriarchy-based flip flops. They had been secretly seeing each
paradigms condemn women and non-binary other for weeks. Fingers arched above waistband / Kisses pressed against my neck / Pushing my
people for being sexually free, and its become Are you planning on breaking up with body against yours / Desperate desperate desperate / Ill kneel down before you / For a
far too easy to classify someone as addicted to her? shed constantly ask him. His response moment of your time / Silly slut just wants to please / Desperate desperate desperate
sex simply because they are liberated. was never what she hoped. They resisted
-Sid Drmay

15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 5

(/flt/) Philautia refers to self-love. Historically, it has two forms: one being associated with self-

ishness and narcissism, and the other being associated with pride and genuine self-love. In essence,
philautia means that you cant truly love others until you love yourself.

the aftermath D ays after Chandel broke up with his girl-

friend, he stopped eating. His appetite
decreased and he felt sick to his stomach every
ficult time moving forward. Her breakup hap-
pened more than two years ago.
I was so self-conscious and anxious any-

Being cheated on affects mental health. According to
time he thought about what he saw through the
window of his ex-partners apartment.
Div, what are you doing? his mom asked
as he stepped out of his washroom after show-
time I talked to anyone else, she says. I still
dont feel pretty enough.

S tages of grief, similar to the ones a person

experiences following deathshock, deni-
experts, the healing process mimics the seven stages of eringthe third time that day. al, pain, guilt, anger, bargaining, depression,
I feel dirty, he responded. This thought loneliness, the upward turn, acceptance and
grief and it can take years to recover from would follow him around for years to come. hopetake years for some to work through.
She just cheated on me, she was with me In an article published by the Huffington Post,
while she was with himI feel dirty. I need to Sheri Meyers, a marriage and family counsel-
be clean. lor, says that a common thing she hears from

D ivyansh Singh Chandel made his way to

the back door of his girlfriends apart-
ment in secretthe way he always did when
hed forgotten how to move.
This happened six years ago. But the third-
year aerospace engineering student is still un-
Second-year professional communications
student Lucy Mills, 20, met her boyfriend
when she was 16 years old. They dated for
her clients is that, their partner made them
cheat. Often, their partners believe them due
to their vulnerable emotional state. Mentally,
they wanted to hang out. His fingers slowly able to trust another partnerdespite his at- over a year. I was so used to having him in my it is very difficult for partners to move forward
ran along the stems of the red flowers that the tempts to go on dates since that night. life, as a part of my routine, she says. Right after being cheated on out of fear of making
florist had carefully wrapped in a bouquet,
while his other clammy hand gripped a box
of chocolates tight to his chest. Tonight was
A 2011 study published by the Archives of
Sexual Behavior stated that one in five
people in relationships have cheated on their
before my prom, I had been dealing with my
anxiety and had just been [prescribed] antide-
pressants. One night he called me, explaining
their next partner want to cheat.
Six years after the incident at the back win-
dow, Chandel stood in his bedroom one night
her birthday. And instead of sending her his partner. The topic of infidelity has not only that hed been in a hot tub with a few girls and feeling devastated. He had just finished taking
regular back door text, Chandel decided that been prominent in the mediawhere celeb- ended up getting naked. his third shower of the day. He still felt dirty.
he wanted to surprise her. rities such as Beyonc have publicized their He thought about his ex-girlfriend, won-
Her parents never approved of him, but their experiencesbut has also made its way into She was with me while dering where she was, or who she was cur-
level of secrecy and his two-hour commute to conversations surrounding mental health. rently with. Then, he clenched his fists,
her place never deterred him from visiting the According to Dr. Diana Brecher, a clinical
she was with himI feel thinking about the possibility of her making
girl he loved, so he did this for two years. psychologist at Ryerson, being cheated on dirty. I need to be clean someone else feel the way he did.
His cellphone glowed brightly, illuminat- can affect the state of your mental health. The Chandel hopes that one day he can settle
ing his smiling face as he checked to make mind has automatic tendencies to make sense Mills broke up with him immediately after. down with someone, despite the anxiety he
sure that it was midnight, and officially her of a situation when dealing with loss and try- She was in shock. She assumed they were in a still currently feels.
birthday. It was around this exact time that ing to cope. Partners who have been cheated good place in their relationship. She couldnt I think about being with someone even-
he saw his partners silhouette in the frame on tend to blame themselves in search of some rid herself of the thought that she wasnt good tually, but I think itll be a long time before I
of the window, along with another bodya sort of rationale for why it happened. When- enough, pretty enough, or that she couldnt can trust another woman again, he says. Ive
man, who began kissing her neck. Chandels ever someone is victimized in this kind of make him happy. come close to meeting really amazing women,
hands shook and his body froze, as if his feet way, you want to find a way to make sense of Mills experienced more anxiety following that Ive thought were the one, but the minute
had sunken into the soil below him. It was like it, so you put the blame on yourself, she says. her boyfriends infidelity and says she had a dif- I recall what happened, I run away.

6 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17

from the high
ot too long ago, I took my first step into to themthe things that we enjoyed doing to
the world of kink. I was a baby gay com- themwere fucked up. It was hard to recon-
ing to terms with my borderline personality cile the good people that we thought we were,
disorder (BDP) diagnosis, looking for any and the ones who follow societal expectations and
every label that could help alleviate the lack of have a moral compass and know right from
self-identity that comprises my BPD. wrong, with the people who are capable of
I knew I was queer. I knew I identified as hurting other people, and enjoying it.
femme. But I didnt know if I was a dominant
Exploring the depressive after-effects of kink For my friend, there was always a creeping
(top), a submissive (bottom), or a pillow prin- through the eyes of a dom fear at the back of his mind that the violence
cess; I didnt even know if I was kinky. BY JEN CHAN or cruelty he was letting loose during sex could
So I tried to find out. rear up in his normal life, outside of a scene.
I began to notice a pattern. The sheer rush For me, there was a deep instinct to disen-
of euphoria and affection created a high I cesses fearful thoughtsdecreases in activity. We ended the call on a mildly uncomfort- gage, to distance myself emotionally from my
felt each time I topped my partner, and it Researchers have theorized that the rebound able note, both trying not to remember the dy- partner, because I thought that if I didnt care
would sharply drop the minute I got home. of the amygdala after sex is what triggers fear namics of control that ended our relationship. about them as much, then maybe I wouldnt
I was drained of energy and in a foul mood and depression. Those dynamics were created, in part, by my hate them for egging me on to do things I was
for days, often skipping work or class. I felt A 2015 study published in the Journal of BPD, and, as I would later discover, top drop. scared of.
stuck on something because I wanted to feel
that intensely blissful sex all over again, but I
couldnt figure out how to get it back.
Sexual Medicine found that 46 per cent of the
230 female participants reported experiencing
PCD at least once after sex.
I n the days to follow, I avoided thinking about
what being a top had felt like for me and
scheduled a lunch date with another friend to
My friend has since recognized how un-
healthy his relationship with his ex was. These
days, he identifies as a switch (someone who
If youre familiar with the after-effects of tak-
ing MDMAthe crash, the lack of endorphins,
the dip in mood for up to a week laterthen
A ftercare is crucial and varies for subs, de-
pending on their needs. Some subs appre-
ciate being held or cuddled gently after a scene.
hear his perspective.
Being a dom gives you the freedom to act
on repressed desires, he told me over a plate
alternates between dominant and submissive
roles). The deep-seated sense of feeling si-
lenced that was so prevalent in his first kinky
youve got a pretty good idea of how a drop Others need to hydrate, need their own space of chili cheese fries. This is what his ex said relationship, is nowhere to be seen. He com-
felt for me. Just add in an unhealthy serving of away from their partner or a detailed analysis of to cajole him into being a topthe implied municates his sexual needs and desires and
guilt and self-doubt, a pinch of worthlessness everything that happened for future knowledge. whatever you want dangled in front of a any accompanying emotional fragility with
and a dash of contempt for both myself and my But no matter what the specific aftercare is, the young gay man still figuring himself out. his current partner. Hes happy.
partner, and voila! Top drop: the less talked goal is still the same: for a top to accommodate a Im a little envious of him. My second-favou-
about counterpart to sub drop where the dom- sub and guide them out of subspacea state of rite hobby is rambling about all of the things
inant feels a sense of hopelessness following mind experienced by a submissive in a BDSM
It gets me to forget Im feeling, and its a close second to my favou-
BDSMbondage and discipline, domination scenarioas directly as they were guided in. pain or worries its rite, which is crying. I credit my Cancer sun sign
and submission, sadism and masochismif af- I asked one of my exes, whos identified as a better than drugs for my ability to embrace my insecurities, but
ter care is neglected. straight-edge sub for several years, what sub- theres still something that makes me feel like
In the BDSM community, its common to space is like. As someone who doesnt drink or Im not equipped to deal with top drop.
talk about the submissive (sub) experience:
To communicate the expectations and needs
of the submissive partner before engaging in
do drugs, I was curious about what it was like
for them to reach that same ephemeral zone
of pleasure.
He was new to kink, new to identifying and
acting on his desires, and most of all, new to
the expectations that were placed on him by his
T heres an interesting contrast between how
a top is expected to behavestrong, tough,
in controland the realities of the human expe-
consensual kinky play, to make sure the safety It gets me to forget pain or worries, it gets partner. He was expected to be a tough, macho rience. When a top revels in the high of taking
of the sub during intense physical and/or psy- me to focus only on what Im feeling right then, top to his exs tender, needy bottom. His after- control, but starts to feel some of that control
chological activities is tantamount, to tend they told me. Its better than drugs. care, however, didnt fit into that fantasy. If that fading afterwards, how do they pinpoint the
and care for the sub after the scene ends and My ex gave up all substances in favour of had been different, maybe he wouldnt have cause? How do they talk about that insecurity?
theyre brought back down to earth. getting fucked by kink, instead. Im a little im- spiraled into a place where his mental health How do they develop aftercare for themselves?
Outside of this, the rush of sadness and anx- pressed by how powerful the bottom high must was deteriorating, along with his relationship. One of the hallowed tenets of BDSM and
iety that hits after sex is known as post-coital be for them. The doubt and guilt that he would often kink is the necessity of good communication; to
tristesse, or post-coital dysphoria (PCD). It is The high for bottoms is from letting go of all feel for days after a kinky session mirrored be able to recognize a desire, then comfortably
potentially linked to the fact that during sex, control, they added. If were following that log- my own. We both struggled with the idea communicate that to a partner. Healthy, con-
the amygdalaa part of the brain that pro- ic, then the top high is all about taking control. that the things our partners wanted us to do sensual, safe kink is predicated on this.

I cant tell you I love you

I cant tell you I love you. It happened before and now its happening again. When you try to talk to me or hold me, I shudder and
push away. I cant tell you I love you because I dont know if I do. I feel like I should because I did before, and I think right now I do
but I dont know how to tell you for sure. I cant tell you I love you.
-Sid Drmay

15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 7


(/prgm/) Pragma refers to a more mature form of love, usually expressed through marriage or a
lifelong partnership. Contrasting with eros, pragma is calm and stable and focused on commitment.

Staying Together behind that night in 1989.

out of obligation
Though I secretly denied it for years, my
parents hostile interactions with each other
affected the way I reacted to potential rela-
tionships. I have trust issues and hate being
dependent on men. Frankly, Im scared to go

I ts 3:23 a.m. on a school night. Im 10 years

old and sitting on the cold bathroom floor
with my back against the wall. I have a hard-
Growing up around two parents who dont
love each other can have long term social and
through the same shit my mom did.
Thankfully, my parents put an end to the
misery after 20 long years. But some people
psychological effects on your relationships
cover book in my hand, but havent dared to arent that lucky. A friend of mine, Sarah Rowe,
open it. My earphones are plugged into my BY IZABELLA BALCERZAK prefers not go home after a long day of school.
MP3 player, blaring My Chemical Romance. She lives under the same roof as her parents,
This is my feeble attempt to drown out the who she says dont love each other. It took
noise coming from the kitchen. In between the bathroom, hiding from the screaming. family with someone have evolved over time. three kids and 30 years for them to realize that.
songs, I can hear the crumbling of my parents Theres no way to guarantee a couple will Rather than being driven by combining fam- Its painful and I wouldnt wish this on any-
partnership, but only for 10 seconds at a time. stay in love throughout their relationship. ily wealth and land, people now seek emotional one because its kind of a very hostile environ-
My parents fell out of love as soon as they Circumstances change. People change. But fulfillment in long-term relationships. Denise ment, she says. Were walking on our tiptoes
fell into it. once they start a family together, breaking up Marigold, an associate professor at the Univer- because everyone knows that theyre unhappy.
It was 1989 and they met through mutual isnt always an easy choice. The well-being sity of Waterloo, says current generations are This tense upbringing is what makes many
friends in a busy Polish bar in Roncesvalles. of the children is the priority, and the initial marrying with higher expectationsa result of children from unhappy homes hesitant about
Both new to the country, they spoke little thought is that staying togetherdespite be- being busier and having less time to invest in falling in love themselves.
English and found each other attractive. My ing unhappyis whats best for everyone. relationships than previous generations. I fear for how Ill be when I do have that re-
mother is fair skinned, has ocean-blue eyes But research conducted by Child Trends, [People believe] that their partner will lationship, says Rowe. When I do exchange
and blonde hair that falls to her shoulders in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence and the be all things to them; be a friend, a lover, a I love you and it is real, it is fierce.
curls. My father is olive toned with dark hair National Institute of Mental Health all found domestic partner and help them fulfill their It scares me. Its a weird double-edged
and a sharp jawline. They were the Sandy Ols- that children raised in unhappy homes often ultimate potential, says Marigold. And yet sword. I want it but I dont want it at all.
son and Danny Zuko of the night, but 10 years experience depression, anxiety, cardiac stress, people end up disappointed [even] more. If my experiences taught me anything, its
older and without all the grease. difficulties in school and trouble with their That feeling of disappointment stayed that marriage shouldnt be the ultimate goal. It
Their struggle to start new lives as Canadians own future relationships. with me throughout my childhood. After doesnt always work out for everyone and isnt
was what united them. They were living pay- school, I would watch other moms and dads something that should be forced.
cheque to paycheque. My father started work- walk by, holding hands and sharing the oc- Play your music to enhance your life, not
ing at a car dealership during the day and my My parents fell out of casional kiss. I felt confused and intrigued. to drown it out. Read your book because you
mom found a job in a meat factory. From mid- love as soon as they Romance was a foreign concept to me. It was want to, not because its convenient. And dont
night to dawn, they both cleaned offices. Any fell into it an approach to love that my parents had left sit on cold floors. There are rugs for a reason.

Bloor Station
romantic desire was replaced with what was
convenientif they had the energy to do so.
Like many first-born children, my older
sister wasnt planned. At the time, my par- One student I spoke with doesnt remember
ents were living together because the rent a time when her parents relationship was in a He says hes like a landmine; pervasive, sweetheart. He even spells it out
was cheap and the sex was convenient. They good place. Her dad found his escape in work- loud for all the fucking idiots like me: I am volatile, I am buried under
werent married and werent very compatible. ing late nights, then coming home to watch
My dad preferred brunettes. TV. He never asked about school or how she
bronze and bullet shells and women who plead.
With the arrival of two more little blonde was doing. I tell him I cant relate. I say, Im like an old subwayIm lethargic, and I
girlsme and my little sistermy dads frustra- Her parents constant fighting finally result- hum, and Im filled with so many people, pushing their way in and taking
tions heightened and he turned to alcohol for ed in their divorce a few years ago, but only up space and sleeping inside of me for three stops too long.
release. He began working as a truck driver, after staying together for nearly two decades But most of all Im inconsistent and irritating on weekends.
which meant long days away from home. We for the sake of their children. -Syd Lazarus
didnt mind because it meant less time spent in The reasons behind marrying or starting a

8 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17

saying I do
At twenty-two
married is quite prominent. us versus the problem.
Historically, theres a pressure thats still I think this is good advice for every cou-
With fewer people opting for marriage at a young around, to be at a certain place in your career ple. In my experience, the success or failure
age, the motives of those who do are often and in your financial portfolio before you of a long-term relationship rides on two key
questioned. Ryerson grad Leah Szepesi explains settle down. I hate that pressure, says Doug- things: practicing good communication habits
las. Its not supposed to be a show, but theres during stressful situations and being able to
her decision to get engaged still a pressure on young people to spend ri- put down your pride to provide for your part-
diculous amounts of money on one day. For ners needs to the best of your abilities. That

W hen I was 10, my mother convinced

me to start playing the flute. I loved
years for women and 31.6 for men. Research
has also shown that age is a determining fac-
a generation that is financially strapped its so
grossly unfair.
commitment makes you better as an individ-
ual, and as a couple. So, with all due respect to
music, so I didnt question it. Even though I
havent played in years, I am thankful for that
instrument to this day because without it, I
tor of the success of the marriage. Teens who
get married nearly double the risk of their
marriage dissolving compared to someone
T heres a plethora of relationship experts
out there that can give you advice on
how to deal with marital issues, but I prefer
everyone who has questioned my motives: I
know why Im getting married, and its for the
right reasons.
would never have met my fianc. in their mid-20s. simple, grounded guidance from others with
I went to a high school with a regional arts Since getting engaged, Ive received a lot similar life experience. Just remember, when
program. I had to perform two concerts a of unsolicited advice from older women Marriage is all about communication, things get tough, its
year, and the rehearsals could take up three urging me not to limit myself to my high former Ryerson student Casey Lynne told
periods of the school day. If you missed your school sweetheart. It always brings back the me over the phone, speaking from her condo
not me versus you
lunch, as I did the day I met my fianc, you poignant memory from my high school psy- that she owns with her common-law part- ... Its us versus the
were allowed to eat during fourth period in- chology class, when the teacher told us that ner, Jeremy. Like Alex and me, they have problem
stead. My childhood friend also had lunch at we should dump our current partner when been together for six years. Lynne told me
that time and one of her friends, Alex, was we graduate to avoid settling prematurely. how excited she is to get married someday,
there. He was this really annoying guy with
big blue eyes.
As they say, the rest was history.
At the time, I thought that was stupid advice,
and frankly, I still think that.
Of course, I know why my high school
and how they were waiting until they could
afford the right ring before getting engaged
at which point I heard Jeremy laugh in the
I have my wedding planning list open. Al-
though Ive already booked the venue, the
catering, the photography, and the enter-
Four years later, we were sitting together teacher, the office administrator at my first background. tainment, it still feels like Ive barely dented
on our fourth anniversary. Keeping with the internship, and one random customer at I asked her for advice on how they keep my to-do list.
theme, we went to a restaurant called Four, the Oakham Caf felt the need to warn me that good-natured laughter and happiness But instead of stressing out over every-
taking our seats at 4:44 p.m. about getting married young. All of these going, even after years of living together, and thing thats left to do, I think Im going to
As we sat down at the table, he pulled out a women came from a generation where find- she gave it a lot of thought before answering. go dust off my flute and play a piecemaybe
small jewelry boxthe fourth gift he gave me ing a husband at a young age somehow made Just remember, when things get tough, its something from the long-lost repertoire of a
that day. I must have looked as shocked as I you more complete, and better equipped to not me versus you, she finally told me. Its 15-year-old girl in love.
felt. His face changed and suddenly, he looked start a life.
concerned. Before he could ask, I blurted, This has resulted in an
Lets talk about this before you embarrass oppositional social pres-
yourself in public! sure that constantly ques-
Inside the box was a charm for my Pan- tions whether young peo-
dora bracelet, not a ringsomething I wish ple are getting married for
I had known. Alex had a good laugh at my the right reason.
expense. At the time, I thought that would be Many people, myself
it, but three weeks later, he turned to me and included, love the ro-
said, You would have said no? mance of a traditional
wedding. Its not wrong
to want that, but it is im-
Ive received a lot of
portant to be mindful of
unsolicited advice from the problems that are sure
older women urging me to arise after the honey-
not to limit myself to my moon ends.
high school sweetheart You have to be sure
youre ready for the work
thats involved in building

I knew I wasnt ready to get married. Not a lasting relationship and
because I didnt want to spend the rest of that youre ready to settle
my life with Alex, but because I needed to down, says Dr. Wanda
make sure we were on the same page before Malcolm, a psychologist
I committed. who provides marriage
A week passed and I presented him with counselling services in
a list of twenty questions. It included inqui- Mississauga. She knows
ries about whether or not he wanted to have better than most that
kids, where he saw himself working in the there is no formula for
future, what sort of things he absolutely had marital success.
to do in life, and so on. In-depth discussions People should not be to-
about how we saw our futures independently gether just to have a wed-
and as partners unfolded over the year and ding, she said. Thats a
a half. bad reason for getting mar-
When he actually did propose, I was just ried.
as surprised as that day in the restaurant. But Reverend Stephanie
this time, I knew I was ready to say yes. Douglas, an Anglican

T he number of young people getting

married is gradually decreasing. Ac-
cording to the Canadian Encyclopedia, in
priest who has performed
many marriages in her
career, says the stress of
1950, the average age for women to wed was being professionally suc-
25.9 years. By 2008, the average became 29.6 cessful before getting

15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 9

(/lu.dus/) Ludus, derived from the Roman term, refers to playful and casual love between young

lovers. Traditionally, its flirtatious and light-hearted. This type of love manifests in the early stages of
a relationship, or during a night out.

in favour of against
Millennials get bashed constantly for their Theres absolutely nothing wrong with ca-
BY OLIVIA promiscuity. Our relationships last as long as BY DEVIN sual sex or dating, and thats not where my
BEDNAR our phone batterieswe have commitment JONES issues with hookup culture lie. While I pre-
problems, were emotionless and apathetic, we fer having a partner to go home to at the end
pose a threat to monogamy. Or at least, thats of a stressful day, I certainly understand the
what those of us who engage in casual sex are accused of. freedom of doing whatever (and whomever), whenever you choose to.
The inception of dating apps have only contributed to this idea, making us out to be this But when the fuck did sex, casual dating and general hookup culture become cruel, spite-
new breed of sex-driven robots living in an apocalyptic Tinder-verse. ful and demoralizing? Somehow, many of us seem to have forgotten that theres another
The truth is, these apps are just making hookup culture more visible. It has always ex- person involved in these easy, breezy, enticing adventures. Its one thing to be selfish. Its
istedbut our generation is taking all of the criticism. one thing to not wantin that momentto share yourself emotionally with someone else.
Casual hookups are a dudes dream and a girls worst nightmare, right? Or at least, thats No one should ever condemn you for making that choice. But its another thing entirely to
what some people will tell you. God forbid a woman enjoys herself during sex. But these leave a sleeping woman in the middle of the night because you got what you came for and
casual rendez-vous can *gasps* actually empower young women by allowing them to feel have better things to do.
confident and comfortable with their bodies and their sexuality, instead of ashamed. The Theres this argument that gets thrown around in articles about not subjecting yourself
term slut should be removed from everyones vocabulary. to the awkwardness that accompanies sleeping with someone you just met. But guess what:
If youre having sex, odds are youre a consenting adult. Which means that you, and only life is fucking awkward, so get over yourself. Buy them coffee in the morning, offer a quick
you, can make the choice about what you want to do with your body. Celebrate instead of hug and then you can peace out. Or, if youre a polite douchebag, at the very least you can
shunning yourself. leave a note on your way out.
Be liberated by a casual hookup, or dont be. Thats the beauty of it: you can choose wheth- Maybe Im old, but when did we decide sex and being kind to someone dont coalesce?
er or not you want to be part of this culture. Choice is important. Its also important not to Its my belief that dating apps have done irrevocable damage to the way we treat others.
look down on those who make choices based on whats good for them. Hooking up has become a game based on the common denominator, where the excuse of
Sexual exploration is a big part of growing up. But in order to make it less taboo, we need never seeing that person again gives you grounds to be a complete dickbag and feel good
to be open minded. about it afterwards.
More importantly, with the shitstorm thats happening south of our border, young people Its good to have experiences when youre young, and a lot of us may be too horny to
having casual sex should be the least of our worries. settle down, anyway. But that doesnt mean the lessons weve been taught our entire lives
And why not have some fun before committing to a life of Friday night Netflix-ing with about respecting other people, especially in vulnerable situations like during sex, means we
your significant other? If youre still searching for that person wholl let you have that last turn into raging asshats just to get some.
spoonful of ice cream, why not have some fun? To me, sex should always be meaningful. Respect and awareness for both people is im-
As long as its safe and consensual, keep on swiping! perative and should be the most important thing.

10 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17

(/-gp/) Agape refers to selfless and unconditional love. The ancient Greeks considered it to be the

highest form of love. Those who give without being concerned about getting anything in return, often
through charity, fit this definition.

finding Selfish
Relationships are about balance: giving and taking, obligated to. She ignored how tired she was him money, she says. But he would just waste
understanding and communicating. But when you and how little she could focus on classes the it on other vices, and Jennifer felt like she
next day. She ended up on academic proba- couldnt say no.
give too much, its easy to neglect your own needs
tion, and felt like she lost herself. She reached her limit when he made plans to
BY JACOB DUB You just feel like a shell. Youre not really move to another country and asked her for an
there as a person. Your presence is there, but $1,800 loan to pay off his debts. He insisted that
youre not really engaged in any conversa- his mom thought it was a great idea. Initially,

T he end started with a series of phone

calls. My then-girlfriend and I got into
an argument. It was back in high school when
relationships. Although making sacrifices and
putting someone elses needs before your own
are seen as pillars of a stable partnership, its
tion, youre not there socially. It was a tough
time, Jennifer says. She would look at her
friends, who were finishing their degrees.
she resistedshe had her own tuition to pay
off. But he convinced her the loan would prove
she was caring, and it would be an investment
nobody had cars or the patience to take a bus, a dangerous slope that can lead to unhealthy They were happy. Soon after she realized her in their long-term relationship. She loved him
so everything happened through my lime- side effects. relationship was the main cause of her stress, and, eventually agreed.
green LG Rumor flip phone. I cant remember
what we were fighting about, but I remem-
ber thinking it was all my fault. Alone in my
W hen Jennifer, a Ryerson student who
asked me not to use her last name,
was working her way through a nursing de-
she knew it wouldnt last and eventually, she
broke it off.
You know how they say if you love them,
I would like to say I learned my lesson be-
fore, but a part of me always wants to take
care of who Im dating, she says. Because I
room, I would call her and cry for forgiveness. gree, she barely had any time to herself. Her youll do anything you can for them? she says. dont want to see them in a position where
She would quietly listen, hang up, and wait for days started at 5 a.m. She would head to class, Essentially what I did in my first relationship they cant take care of themselves. I want to be
me to call again. And I would. then to work with just enough time to spare. was that I did anything I could, and I wasnt able to help them.
Every time I heard the dial tone, I felt this Her then-boyfriend insisted she see him ev- happy at the end. In his report, Weegmann says the solu-
urge to call back, to put myself back out there ery other day, regardless of how she felt. She After that relationship, Jennifer says she tions for breaking a cycle of codependency
just to be put down again. It wasnt because would get off work at 10, stay with him until became more cautious because she didnt are all about understanding. The core fixes are
I wanted to fix the argumentit was far too one, and get four hours of sleep before repeat- want to give too much of herself again. But, centered in finding your own source of self-
late for thatbut because I thought that to be ing the cycle all over again. Jennifer didnt in practice, it was harder than it seemed. esteem, and making sure your relationship is
in a relationship, I had to give away every part
of myself. I gave her all my time, while my
friends fell to the wayside. The sacrifice was
like the person she was becoming. It starts to
wear down on you, she says. A study done by the National Endow-
ment for Financial Education found
that people in a relationship spend any-
equal and healthy. Through the human search
for security, some individuals become caught
up in ties that bind and blind, he writes.
part of the romance. But after a few months, I
had nothing left to give.
Part of me was
saying, I need to take
where from $600 to $3,600 more per year
than those who arent. For Jennifer, that H anging up for the last time, it finally
clicked that I deserved better, and that

P sychologists and relationship experts of-

ten talk about the idea of codependency.
The term is referenced primarily when talking
care of him. I need to
nurture him. I need to
spending increase came all at once with an-
other ex-boyfriend. He lacked ambition and
wasnt employed, so she would always give
I had to help myselfthat a relationship isnt
about taking parts of yourself to fill whats
missing in the other person, but being able to
about the partners of substance abuse addicts, give him money him money for food and other necessities. share what makes you both whole.
but it has slowly etched its way into the pub- Part of me was saying, I need to take care So I put my lime-green flip phone down,
lic discourse. At its core, a codependent rela- of him. I need to nurture him. I need to give wiped the tears off my face and began to rebuild.

tionship is one where a person invests more of She was 16 when she started dating her
themselves than the otherto their detriment. 26-year-old ex, whom she met through her
In his report titled Love is the drug: Code- sister. He didnt like her friends, so she gave
pendency - the bind that blinds, clinical psy- up time with them for him. I alienated my-
chologist Martin Weegmann says that a per- self. When I did have free time I had to choose
Lavender grows under my eyes / Awake and blooming throughout the night
son in a codependent relationship weaves between him and my friends, Jennifer says.
their life around someone elses and sacrifices But it was the lack of sleep that really caused a Overlooking the neglect within myself / Tending to plants and loved ones alike
their own needs as a result. The codependent strain on her. There is comfort in knowing / The pieces of love that cant fit inside
person will often fall into a caregiving role, She didnt spend those long nights with him Are living in those around me
and can repeat this process through multiple because she loved himbut because she felt -Serena Sbrizzi

15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 11

(/flj/ or /fli/) Philia refers to platonic love. At the time, this form of love was seen as more virtu-

ous than eros. It encompasses a deep affection between friends and family, and is often regarded as
being made up of equal parts. Aristotle used the words loyal and virtue when describing philia love.

I am
of scarcity, where romantic relationships are
only valuable because of their perceived rar-
ity. Love is constructed as something highly
limited in a persons life, when defining love
outside of romance makes space for intimacy
According to the Greek myth, humans were
created with four arms, four legs, and two faces.
T he asexual and aromantic community
coined the term amatonormativity.
This refers to the assumption, even within
to enter all parts of our lives.
I am deeply intimate with my spoken word
community when I spill my emotions onstage.
Fearing their power, Zeus split them into two the queer community, that everyone is des- I am intimate with my siblings; they are the
separate parts, condemning them to spend their tined for monogamous partnership, and that first people I call when I really need help. I am
this romantic/sexual partnership should be intimate with the students I mentor so I can
lives in search of their other halves. - Plato the primary relationship in a persons life. help them through difficult situations. And
The expectation that everyone has a singu- I am so deeply intimate with my friends be-
BY TWOEY GRAY lar celestial match is not only dangerous for cause I let them carry such an enormous part
people who dont want monogamous partner- of my spirit.
ship, but also for people who do.

A ccording to the myth of Eros, I am extra

cursed. I am supposedly doomed to live
out my days in search of a partner, but Im not
other the best birthdays and write each other We treat friendsat bestas bonus rela-
poetry. We value each other outside of our tionships, subordinate to our romantic part-
narrower criteria for partner material, and nerships; at worst, as wingmen to augment
Love is constructed
as something highly
limited in a persons
looking for one. And like any backfired wish, allow our capacity to indulge in different in- our shitty love lives as we seek out our ac-
Zeus would probably be pissed. terests and beliefs to grow. We grind on the tual other halves. We deprioritize relation- life, when defining love
Being an aromantic asexual, or aroace dance floor, freak out in each others Insta- ships with our family, friends, children, men- outside of romance
for short, is one of my favourite things about gram comments, and text each other to say tors, mentees and community in favour of an makes space for
myself. Ive identified this way since I was good morning. We regularly exchange the idealized, sole deliverer of comfort and care. intimacy to enter all
around 16, when I realized the other girls words I love you, and regard our friend- We position intimacy as a gift that can only
parts of our lives
playing truth or dare actually did have crush- ships not as disposable hangouts, but as real be achieved through exclusion, and single-
es on people and werent just regurgitating relationshipsones that require tenderness ness as a state of loneliness and incompletion.
some Olsen twins movie. The asexual part
indicates that I dont experience sexual at-
traction; there is no person or gender I look
and work. The high pedestal constructed for romantic
For all of the life-changing friendships I relationships can easily destroy them, while
have had, Ive never once felt the need to for- limiting the potential for multi-dimensional
T he Greek myth of Eros tells me I am in-
complete if I am no ones second half.
But what I know about love is this:
at and think, Hell yeah, Id hit that. The mally date. definitions of intimacy. Love is not only for lovers. Love is not di-
aromantic part indicates that I dont experi- And why should I? Amatonormativity operates on an economy visible by two. Love is not finite. Instead,
ence romantic attraction, meaning there is love is community. Love is chosen family.

no person I meet who makes me think, Hell Love is the people I send my selfies to before
yeah, Id date that. And to me, this is the fur- I post them. Love is the friends who take
thest thing from loveless. my frantic midnight phone calls. Love is the
My intimacy with my friends is passionate people who come to my sleepovers. Love is
and layered and magical in a way that is evi- Love face-to-face and you see a person the ones who check in on me. Love is the
dent as soon as you experience it. Love side by side and you see the world friends who teach me new things about my-
We buy each other surprise flowers, come -Twoey Gray self every day.
to each others family functions, throw each And love is mine, mine, mine.

12 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17

love and sex
By tHe NuMBeRs
We asked for it and you gave it to us. Heres what we
learned about you dirty fuckers from our annual Love and
Sex survey. May you fuck well and may you always remem-
ber to say, Thanks, keep it comin, after sex.

Have you eveR BeeN INjuRed

duRINg sex?
I hit my head off my partners headboard changing positions. Hurt really bad
but we shrugged it off and kept going. Woke up in the middle of the night
vomiting, so I went to the doctor the next dayturns out I got a concussion.

He kneed me in the balls. Repeatedly. Im on top from now on.

Girl riding reverse cowgirl slipped off and crushed my dick.

Only my HEART.

I got hit in the face by a crotch bone, my lip was bleeding.

of respondents have never been

46.2% cheated on. About 36 per cent

have been. Roughly 18 per cent
said theyve cheated on someone.

About 62 per cent of respondents

plan on getting married. Twenty-
one per cent dont. About 17 per
cent will only marry someone if
theyre rich.

of respondents would rather have
sweaty bathroom sex with The
Eyeopener than go for dinner and
a movie with The Ryersonian.

We asked you to
talk dIRty to us....
Independent hard-hitting journalism makes the ladies panties get wet. I touch
myself to your RSU-related live tweet sessions.

The dirtiest thing is what the capitalist system does to us on a daily basis.

Push me up against the wall and lift me up so my legs wrap around your waist.
Carry me to the bed and throw me onto the mattress. Rip my underwear off my
hips and spread my legs. Spread my soft pink pussy lips with your finger and
then your tongue. I want you to taste me while I scream your name and cum on
your tongue.

What I do have is a very particular set of skills. Skills I have acquired over a very
long career. If you dont come over soon, I will look for you, I will find you and I
will fuck the brains out of you.

The RSUs financial records.

You can open my eyes and legs any time you want.

Buy me a drink first.


15/02/17 LOVE & SEX 13

14 LOVE & SEX 15/02/17
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