Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: The Social Media Postulate
Oct 2014 15

Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: The Social Media Postulate  

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Love,Relationships,Sex,Society

by Bradley Suicide


[Above: Bradley Suicide in Digital Love]

Lets talk a little bit about social media and relationships. It’s no secret that social media has been around for a minute now and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. With that being said, I have found through my past relationships and present dating experiences that it can make things very hard to manage when it comes to the wonderful world of romance.

I recently spoke with a close friend of mine who is a divorce and family law attorney. She told me that 9 out of 10 of her divorce cases mention Facebook in their paperwork. Does that tell us something? I mean, on one hand, if someone is going to cheat they are going to cheat –– right? On the other, social media sites like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook make cheating so much more attainable. Basically, you put a recovered heroin addict around heroin for long enough something is probably gonna give I guess?

There is a whole other side of this as well. Before social media, when you had a problem as a couple, you were forced to work it out. In your own way and your own time, but the two of you had to eventually sit down and hash out an argument. Now I find it incredibly dangerous that instead of actually dealing with a problem head on as a couple, you can go online, login, and lull yourself into a false sense of security based on “likes” from nameless, faceless people that you don’t know. Shouldn’t our partner be the person giving us that affirmation rather than strangers?

When it comes to basic get-to-know-you dating there are a few ups and downs with social media as well. I guess it is kind of cool to be able to find out interesting things about the person you have started seeing, like what books they enjoy, their taste in music, etc… But, at the same time, isn’t that one of the best parts of the start of a new relationship? Finding out those fun little facts about the other person. Figuring out your differences and similarities, then determining your compatibility as it comes without preconceived notions.

On top of that I have run into the issue of dudes that I have started to see casually social media “stalking” me. Now I know to draw a hard line with a guy when this happens due to recent experiences. A perfect example, I put up a picture on my Instagram of me and my brother. Not ten minutes later I get a text asking me twenty questions about where I was, who I was with, and who the dude on my IG was. Stalk much? Trust me, I enjoyed this dude’s company and things were going really well, but this behavior continued, spilling onto Twitter as well. I couldn’t win. We weren’t even exclusive at this point. All I could hear in my head was “Hi! I’m a red flag!”.

I strive to keep my head firmly planted on my shoulders and am thankful everyday for the doors that my social media accounts and my amazing followers have opened for me. But, at the end of the day, I choose to now keep my relationships and my social media completely separate. In the end, these networking sites are here to stay. They have their perks and I appreciate all of the networking they have allowed me to do professionally, as well as all of the friends and family that they allow me to easily keep in contact with back home. However, I do have to say, there is nothing sexier to me these days than when a man says that he doesn’t have a Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. It’s downright panty dropping. The thing that I try my hardest to keep in mind is to not allow my social media accounts to cause me to lose sight of the people that are real in my life, as I catch myself chasing the ones who only appear to be.

Social media really does make me a reluctant dater…

Until next time,

XOXO

Bradley

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SuicideGIrls Radio feat. Nina Hartley and Master of O Author Ernest Greene
May 2014 07

SuicideGIrls Radio feat. Nina Hartley and Master of O Author Ernest Greene  

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Books,Entertainment,Love,Relationships,Sex,SG Radio,Society

by Blogbot


ICYMI: Nina Hartley and the ladies of SG Radio submit to the Master of O.

This Thursday, May 8th on SuicideGirls Radio, hosts Nicole Powers, Juturna and Moxi Suicide will be joined by Nina Hartley and her partner Ernest Greene, author of the indecently sexy tale of love, lust, domination, and submission Master of O.

You can listen – and watch – the world’s leading BYOB radio show live on Thursday nights from 6 til 8 PM at our new state-of-the-art all digital home: TradioV.com.

You’ll also be able to listen to our podcasts via Stitcherdownload the app now!

If you have questions for the SG Radio crew or our guests, you can call in during the live broadcast at: 1-855-TRV-inLA (1-855-878-4652)

For updates on all things SG Radio-related, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

[Keep Reading...]

Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: The End Of A Relationship And A New Beginning
May 2014 04

Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: The End Of A Relationship And A New Beginning  

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Love,Relationships,Sex,Society

by Bradley Suicide


[Above: Bradley Suicide in LA Song]

Well ladies and gents, the seasons are changing. The weather is getting warmer and the pools are opening here in Sin City, Las Vegas. Folks are shedding their clothes and in many cases, their relationships.

Very regrettably, I currently find myself in the latter of these situations. As the seasons of the calendar year change so do the seasons of my life I suppose.

This begs the question, what is a girl to do when the life that she was ready to settle down into is ripped away one day? No warning, no idea it was coming. If you’re me, you pour yourself a giant glass of wine –– or just drink straight from the bottle –– and do your best to try and handle the present situation, regardless of how shitty it may be, with some semblance of grace.

I find myself trying to be a big girl and move forward. This has not proven to be an easy task. I find myself wondering where he is, who he’s with –– is he already moving on?

We’ve been broken up for all of a freaking week and it seems like he might be jumping into something, namely another girl’s vagina, already. This very well could just be my brain and emotions messing with me, but I am a firm believer in the fact that 99.9% of the time your gut is correct. The only thing that is for sure is that this really blows.

Over the past few days I have had to face some harsh realities and lessons that did not come easy for me. I have outlined some basic breakup dos and don’ts for you that I have found helpful as well as shared some of my personal experiences:

1. Stop twitter stalking.

As a #twitterfreak, this is not the easiest thing for me to do. As previously stated, I am constantly finding myself wondering about him and what he is doing. During these moments of intense emotion, I have to exercise every single bit of self-control that I can possibly muster to stay off Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc.

When it comes down to it, you can continue to torture yourself further and send yourself into a horrible tailspin that inevitably will end with you in a pile on the bed sobbing uncontrollably, or you can pick up a good book and try your very best to get lost in it.

[Side note: For situations like this I recommend Drinking and Tweeting by Brandi Glanville. Not only will you laugh hysterically, but you won’t feel so bad about your breakup anymore. That chick has been through hell and back with her divorce].

By stalking your ex on social media, the bottom line is that you are adding fuel to the fire, when you really just need to extinguish it. I am very aware that it sucks, but the longer you keep tabs on him, the longer your heartache will last.

Why allow someone who has told you that they don’t want to be with you to have that much control over your emotions? They gave up that right when they made the decision to leave.

2. Keep your social media posts classy.

This is short and sweet. I cannot begin to tell you how many times I have wanted to hop on my Twitter and either talk about how much pain I am in or kick, scream, and call him every name in the book in an attempt to vent and get some sort of release. Please, just say no. Fight the urge and be the bigger person. Again, it goes back to not letting someone who walked out on you be in control of your emotions anymore.

And ladies, I beg you, please don’t post pictures on your IG showing you with a pint of ice cream and a pile of tissues. You are better than that. I am the first person to admit that breakups are emotionally, mentally, and even physically horrible, but posts like that just let him win. It’s your job to have a stiff upper lip and handle this like the lady that you are.

3. Be fabulous

One thing that I have strived to do through this ordeal, that has honestly made me feel a crap ton better, is putting myself together at the beginning of the day. Before I exit my front door, I have on a killer outfit, my makeup is fresh, and my hair is done. Days when you go the extra mile to make yourself feel extra foxy are always the days that you feel like you can take on the world. The way that I see it is that after a really hard breakup you need that extra boost more than ever. Try it! I promise you, it really does help.

Pro tip: My best friend told me a couple of days ago “Never cry over a dude once your makeup is on for the day. You spend way too much money on your cosmetics to cry it all off over some asshole.” She is one of the wisest women I know.

4. Hang with your besties.

My mom and my best friends are the people that I have to thank for helping me get through this shitty experience. Without them there to lean on, I really don’t know if I would have had it in me to get out of bed some mornings. Melodramatic, but true.

Lean on your closest circle for support, they will be there to catch you as your emotions fall and hold your hand to comfort you. From just lending an ear, to telling you what you need to hear (he’s a giant douche bag!), to getting you out of the house, your friends will give you the love and support you need, and will help you keep your sanity when you feel like you have lost all hope.

5. Go out.

I’m not saying to go out and drink yourself into a coma, as pleasant as that might sound at the moment. What I’m saying is get out and do things. Go out and have a cocktail, meet up with friends and coworkers, try new restaurants, catch a movie, hike, go do yoga. Basically, get out and start living YOUR life. It’s a chance for a fresh beginning. Make it a good one.

6. Allow yourself to have a crush or two.

When my relationship came to an abrupt end my confidence was shattered. I felt like there was something wrong with me. I know a lot of other ladies who have felt the same. Irrational as it may be, you feel slightly damaged. So I firmly feel that when the time is right and you are ready to head out for the night with your girlfriends, there is nothing wrong with letting the handsome guy you met in the bar buy you a drink.

I am definitely not saying to go out and start hopping in the sack with dudes –– I actually feel that doing that can be damaging and end up hurting you more. But allow yourself to flirt a little, and build your confidence back up.

***

I know that the above is easier said than done. Yes, I still break these rules for sure, and some days are better than others, but hey, I’m working on it and it does get better with time.

I began writing this column just days after my break up. I put it down, and came back to it a couple of weeks later. I can honestly say that, very slowly, it is getting easier.

The hurt and pain are still very real and seeing him with someone else all over the internet (yep, I told you that I occasionally cave in and break my own rules) twists the knife even more.

Everyone has been in this position and it will always hurt. I know that I am not the first or last person to have their heartbroken. I am trying my best to move my life forward in positive and healthy ways, and allow myself a little fun too.

Bring on the Vegas summer. Cheers to new beginnings.

XOXO
Bradley

Related Posts
Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: Hot Chicks And Douchebags
Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: The Jake Ryan Theory
Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: Penny Lane
Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater: Champagne Wishes And Rockstar Dreams
Confessions Of A Reluctant Dater

A White House Stimulus Package Everyone Can Get Behind
Apr 2014 01

A White House Stimulus Package Everyone Can Get Behind  

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Love,Relationships,Sex,Society

Please support our petition: sign here!

SuicideGirls Radio feat. Lina Esco of Free The Nipple
Feb 2014 13

SuicideGirls Radio feat. Lina Esco of Free The Nipple  

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Entertainment,Feminism,Movies,Politics,Relationships,Sex,SG Radio,Society

by Blogbot

This Thursday, February 13th on SuicideGirls Radio, hosts Nicole Powers and Juturna Suicide will be joined in studio by filmmaker Lina Esco who is currently in the final stages of production on her cinematic endeavor to help Free The Nipple. SG Radio regular David Seaman will also be on our panel to offer a male perspective on the areola inequality that plagues our nation.

You can listen – and watch – the world’s leading BYOB radio show live on Thursday nights from 6 til 8 PM at our new state-of-the-art all digital home: TradioV.com.

You’ll also be able to listen to our podcasts via Stitcherdownload the app now!

If you have questions for the SG Radio crew or our guests, you can call in during the live broadcast at: 1-855-TRV-inLA (1-855-878-4652)

For updates on all things SG Radio-related, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

[Keep Reading...]

SG Radio feat. Kimberly Kane, Adria Suicide, Zak Smith And Smoota
Nov 2013 07

SG Radio feat. Kimberly Kane, Adria Suicide, Zak Smith And Smoota  

Posted In All Things SG,Art,Blog,Feminism,Love,Relationships,Sex,SG Radio,Society

by Blogbot

This Thursday, November 7th on SuicideGirls Radio, hosts Nicole Powers and Juturna Suicide will be discussing feminism and porn – and whether feminist porn is an oxymoron – with award winning adult movie actor and director Kimberly Kane, SG model Adria Suicide, her partner artist-cum-x-rated-actor Zak Smith a.k.a. Zak Sabbath, and the sexually irrepressible recording artist Smoota.

You can listen – and watch – the world’s leading naked radio show live on Thursday nights from 6 til 8 PM at our new state-of-the-art all digital home: TradioV.com/LA.

If you have questions for the SG Radio crew or our guests, you can call in during the live broadcast at: 1-855-TRV-inLA (1-855-878-4652)

For updates on all things SG Radio-related, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

[Keep Reading...]

Red, White and Femme: Don’t You Know That It’s Different For Boys
Nov 2013 05

Red, White and Femme: Don’t You Know That It’s Different For Boys  

Posted In Activism,Blog,Books,Entertainment,Feminism,Interviews,Love,Politics,Relationships,Sex,Society

Masterminds & Wingmen Author Rosalind Wiseman Talks Hooking Up, Raising Better Boys and How To Deal With Cyber Bullies

by Darrah de jour

Masterminds & Wingmen from James M. Edwards on Vimeo.

Author Rosalind Wiseman’s bestselling book Queen Bees & Wannabes was the inspiration for the film Mean Girls,Tina Fey’s hilarious and dead-on satire of high school hierarchies. Back when Lindsay Lohan could sincerely portray a wide-eyed new girl on campus, we all related as she struggled to fit in, be herself, and decode the oft confusing and conniving girl world. In Wiseman’s latest work, she turns her attention to boys; breaking the guy code for parents, educators and young men themselves. With suicide and incarceration rates of boys averaging five to eight times those of girls, this boy bible is needed more than ever. Revealing their capacity for deep emotional life, Wiseman, a foremost anti-bullying activist, offers an important foundation to better understand and communicate with today’s boys.

Darrah de jour: How did you get started as an educator and social justice advocate?

Rosalind Wiseman: Strangely enough, I started by teaching self defense to girls, shortly after I graduated from college. I fell into it, and started a non-profit. I very quickly got to a place of wanting to address the root causes of violence. I went into where girls and boys were and I ran a non-profit for about ten years. I wrote a curricula for social competence, bullying prevention, media literacy and ethical leadership that’s used in many schools and organizations to this day.

DDJ: I remember taking self defense and it had such a powerful effect on me. It even changed my dreams.

RW: Yes, makes sense to me. It’s so fundamental [to] our sense of power and self agency over our bodies. So, if we change that, and feel better about it, it really changes the way we walk through the world.

DDJ: Something particularly unique about your method of relating to teens is that you provide a safe space for them to share their stories and feelings. I remember after the Columbine shooting, when asked what he’d say to the shooters, Marilyn Manson famously replied, “I wouldn’t say anything. I’d listen to them. Which nobody else did.” What drew you to working with tweens and teens –– especially with relation to hot topics like bullying, self-esteem and cliques?

RW: This has been the only job I’ve ever had. I graduated from college and started working on these issues. Very quickly, as a young person in her early 20s, I was struck by how many adults were giving advice but weren’t listening to the kids. So the advice was not helpful. It was not reflective of what the kids were going through. It could be very patronizing. It’s an amazing thing to have to listen to advice from somebody who doesn’t know what they’re talking about. And if you try and argue or present a different point of view it’s perceived by some adults as being disrespectful. I couldn’t stand it. I couldn’t stand that we were teaching children but we were not doing our due diligence to present them with the best information possible. That included listening to them.

The other thing was that I was very concerned… I mean, we can tell people that they have the right to do something, but they have to be able to back up that right and navigate and advocate for themselves with really concrete skills. I was very focused on [the fact] that there were some kids that were above the law. Both boys and girls. They felt like they could do what they wanted with kids that didn’t have that kind of power. I wanted to be able to address those kinds of problems. If we had a chance of wanting school to be a safe place then we needed to address those problems.

DDJ: Absolutely. I grew up with a very dominant father who had an affinity for giving advice to me that was from left field. If I argued –– even if I was trying to connect — it was seen as disrespectful.

RW: When you have a parent who sees that kind of stuff as talking back, the kid develops two responses. One is that they learn to dominate like their parent did and that their opinion matters more than other people’s, or they learn to not advocate for themselves. Becoming an adult [for them] is learning to advocate for themselves, which is really tough stuff. If you talk about boys, you have so much cultural conditioning to take it, suck it up and deal. And then you feel incredibly lonely and you feel incredibly angry. And boys have such scripted rules on how they can express their anger. They sit on it, or they drink themselves into oblivion, or they punch a wall, or they go after somebody. It’s not fair. This is so fixable.

DDJ: You’ve written about the differences in “hooking up” and “hook up culture” between boys and girls. Can you outline some of the ways that hooking up affects girls and boys differently?

RW: First of all, hooking up means different things to different kids, and that’s totally fine. One of the things that really struck me when I was working with adult people, older people, was when we were talking about hooking up and I was talking about how a boy will feel really betrayed when he’s hooking up with a girlfriend or a girl he’s been hooking up with for a while, and then she hooks up with a couple of other boys and he finds out about it… the answer back was, ‘Did they have sex or did they not have sex? Did they have intercourse?’ I was like, ‘You don’t get it. That’s not the point.’ The point is that the boy felt betrayed. However he defines hooking up, it doesn’t matter. This whole thing that if you have sexual intercourse then it means more, or maybe a better way of saying it is, everything else doesn’t matter is totally ridiculous. It absolutely dismisses that person’s opinion or emotional reaction to the betrayal. So, here you have this 16-year-old boy who has a girl who messed around with him and three different guys and he has the right to be upset about this. Regardless of whether or not this girl had sex with these three other boys. That is a generational shift that is huge. So, you’ve got statistics that say teen pregnancy is down, rates of sexual intercourse are later, but I think –– and I think this is positive for the majority of kids –– that they talk about sex more easily with each other. As a boy, you know that a girl you’re hooking up with could hook up with someone else. And based on her social status, frankly –– and this is where the problem is –– she’s either gonna be able to hook up with whoever she wants and have no social consequences whatsoever or her social status will increase. Or, if she has low social status, then she will be really vulnerable to being attacked and dismissed, ridiculed and degraded as being a whore or a slut.

The majority of boys want to have sex, they want to hook up with people, but at the same time, just like girls –– you know girls want to hook up, have sex, mess around and not have responsibility, but those same people, the next day, might want something that’s really emotionally engaged.

DDJ: Is hooking up ever a good thing?

RW: I want teenagers to be able to come into their own sexuality in a sex positive way. The only way to do that is for young people to understand why that’s so hard and how that’s so hard in a gendered way. The legacy and the baggage that girls have about [that is] what stops them from being sex positive. I want girls to understand how to go up against somebody that attacks them for being a slut or a whore. I want a 13-year-old girl to clearly understand that a 17-year-old boy who’s asking her to go hang out with him for the night is somebody who wants the power dynamic to be in his court. That he’s going after her not because she’s cute but because she won’t be able to say no. I want the boys to understand that they also have the right to say no. That they don’t have to say yes to every single sexual advance that comes their way. I want boys to understand why girls are so unclear about what they do and do not want in their sexual interactions with them.

For girls and for boys, after girls have been sexually assaulted, these [are] things that we see when people pile on the victim and say, ‘you’re a whore, you’re a slut, how dare you come forward.’ I want them to understand that they are literally being co-opted into this system and participating in the degradation of someone. In the absence of that context, they fall prey to this really regressive kind of conversation –– or lack of conversation –– that adults rarely have with young people.

DDJ: I’m nodding emphatically over here. Let’s get back to that topic. You claim that boys have a deep emotional life. I’ve always felt that the traditional socialization of boys hampers their future evolution, which contributes to unhappy marriages, workaholism, and feelings of depression and alienation as men. How can we free boys’ ability to express emotions, without emasculating them?

RW: The women in their lives need to be strong authority figures with a good sense of humor, who have no problem saying, ‘Yeah, that — whatever that thing it is you just did — that is over the line. No, I don’t give a shit if you think I’m being uptight. Fuck off.’ And then laugh about it. To be able to handle when boys are pushing boundaries. As a mother I think it’s really important to deal with the legacy that we have around being in the presence of a man who is angry. There are women who are abusive to men, certainly. But being in the face of a man’s anger and capitulating or –– and we get this from any of our relationships –– the idea that it’s more important to maintain the relationship you have with somebody than how you’re treated in that relationship. Both boys and girls can have that in their friendship groups.

When mothers capitulate to their sons and don’t hold boundaries with their sons, their sons stop respecting them as an authority figure for everything and they lose the relationship and the intimacy that they wanted in the first place.

[Boys] don’t want to be emotionally stunted. At some point boys forget that they have the right to have a rich emotional life.

For dads, I think they’ve bought into the stereotype of boys being stupid and only caring about eating nachos and having sex. I do know that there are a lot of boys who want stronger, richer relationships with the men in their lives.

DDJ: As you know, I covered the Steubenville rape case for SuicideGirls. That case, and the gang rape and murder of a medical student in India, pushed the subject of sexual assault into the limelight and served as a trigger for a lot of people. These ghastly events proved to be pivotal ones. The accused Steubenville teens were convicted and new conversations around teen drinking and non-consensual sex were started. Furthermore, laws changed in India because of fervent activism there. How can young men form healthier attitudes about young women when so many societal signals – including those in the media –– cultivate violent and objectifying ones?

RW: The sound bites we give boys like “make healthy decisions…” If I could stop an adult from ever saying “make healthy decisions” again I would feel my job is done. I’m serious! (Laughs.) It’s like, do you hear how inane you are? Do you understand the complexities of life, and you think “make healthy decisions” is an appropriate and effective response? Yeah, sure.

My answer is, get away from sound bites –– which includes “You know, no means no, right?” It’s an important sound bite. Adults need to say that to boys, but they have to say it in a context, which is: if you are somebody who likes to party –– and I’m not going to judge you on this right now that’s a whole different conversation –– but if on chance, you like to socialize and that socializing includes alcohol or drugs and people taking pictures of each other doing things that are embarrassing or stupid, sober or drunk or high, if you do that and you’re a part of that situation and you see something that’s going off the rails, or you’re with somebody that is drunk, maybe not crazy, falling over drunk, but you’ve seen them at five other parties but they’ve managed themselves… We need to provide that kind of context. ‘No means no,’ I get it, but you need to understand there’s a reason people can communicate unclearly in those moments and they can say “maybe.” Maybe is not yes. Maybe, I don’t know, my friends are downstairs. When a woman says ‘my friends are downstairs’ that doesn’t mean she wants to have sex with you if her friends weren’t downstairs. That actually means she wants to leave. But how do you say that to a boy? Nobody talks about rape. But if we say “no means no” as a soundbite, a boy is going to think, ok, a boy is sober, a girl is sober and he’s forcing her down and she is saying stop, stop. That is not the way that most of these rapes are going down. So we need to give them a context for it.

Second thing is, we have to stop giving boys crappy advice about relationships, like girls put holes in condoms. Hook up Saturday, abort on Sunday. We have to recognize that boys are getting awful, awful advice from people in their own lives, not just the media.

We need men turning to the boy in their life during a commercial break and saying, ‘You’re in tenth grade now. You went to that party Saturday night and I’m not asking you what happened, but I just want you to know that stuff is complicated. I remember a friend of mine hooking up with a girl that I really liked and I didn’t know what to do about it. If you ever want to talk to me about it, I’m here.’ And a couple hours later, that boy’s probably going to say, ‘Hey, tell me that story again.’

DDJ: I was talking openly with a guy friend of mine… He said sometimes it’s confusing because a girl will say no, but she’s laughing and he doesn’t know if he should keep going or what. The messages guys are getting from their peers and maybe even their father is just to continue and the girl will eventually give in.

RW: Girls laugh because they are uncomfortable or they don’t want to be perceived as… you know that whole slut crap baggage is in your brain. Or you pretend that you’re clueless that this is happening, like ‘What? You want to have sex with me? Are you kidding?’ But that’s that slut language that’s in our head that makes it much harder for us to communicate clearly. Or you’re laughing because you’re nervous and you really don’t want to be doing this. And that’s what parents need to talk about or else they’re setting their children up for misinterpretation and assault.

DDJ: Do you do any work with gay, bi and transgender youth? How do their needs differ from those of their straight counterparts?

RW: Everybody wants to feel loved and acknowledged. It really varies by community. Some schools and communities are like, ‘Great.’ It’s not going to really do anything. Those boys would be able to talk to their straight friends about their relationships and be fine. There are schools in this country where that’s possible. Then, of course, there are places where you can’t do that and you’re ashamed and run out of town. It really depends on where you’re coming into your own and how stable your home life is. Because I’m straight and a female and married, it was always really important to me to be as adamantly outspoken as I could to support these kids and their rights.

DDJ: In Masterminds & Wingmen you cover topics like porn and video games. How much do you think male teens’ access to video games and free online porn, with little conversation about the reality of lovemaking, femininity, and the female experience, affects their interactions with girls?

RW: They’re gonna say it doesn’t. I get into very big debates with the boys about this. You could show me studies that say killing a prostitute in Grand Theft Auto 5 and then taking back the money that you gave her for her services does not impact your respect for women. I don’t really care. Boys that I really like and respect will say to me, ‘This has not affected my relationship with women and girls.’ They are modeling in my relationships with them their point. I respect what the boys are saying. But that and the torture part of it is where my line is. I don’t have a problem with first person shooter games. The thing I’m much more worried about is that online you’re calling girls fat, whore, slut, pig, whenever you hear a girl’s voice come online when you’re playing a multi-player game. You want to take the argument with me that this doesn’t disrespect girls, well then, the next time you’re in the middle of a game, and some guy starts flaming and trolling a girl you get up and you say, ‘No, this gamer girl has a right to be here, shut up!’ And, they’re not. They’re not coming to the girl’s defense, they’re not reporting the troll. You make those toxic environments in those games. It could be any game. If you stand up for a civil dialogue in those communities, then I will stop getting on your case about GTA 5. But, until then, come up with a different argument.

GTA 5 only has lower power women and degradation. There’s no sex-positive prostitute in GTA 5. That’s the only role they’re allowing women to play in this game. What does that say about the game designers? I’m just in the starting place of working with game designers about the culture in which their games are supporting.

DDJ: Do you think that reading Masterminds & Wingmen will help young men prepare for and navigate the beer-infused, highly competitive social landscape of college life?

RW: They can read Masterminds if they want, but I want them to read this free e-book I wrote for the boys called The Guide: Managing Douchebags, Recruiting Wingmen, and Attracting Who You Want. That’s for them. I put together The Guide with 200 guys about the most likely, annoying, frustrating, excruciatingly miserable experiences you might have in high school. The boys and I have worked in collaboration on what is the best way to get through these situations. It’s free and boys can download it. Men in their 20s have told me that it’s been really helpful.

Pick up Rosalind Wiseman’s new book Masterminds & Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope with Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, and the New Rules of Boy World and stay in touch with her at: www.rosalindwiseman.com and on Facebook and Twitter.

Darrah is a freelance journalist and consultant, with a focus on sensuality, environmentalism, and fearless women in the media. She appears as a “Woman on the Street” on The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet and has contributed to The Conversation website. Her lifestyle writing and celebrity interviews have appeared in Marie Claire, Esquire and W, among others. She contributes author and filmmaker interviews to The Rumpus and Hollywood Today. Her dating confessions have appeared in GirlieGirl Army and xoJane. Darrah’s “Red, White and Femme” columns for SuicideGirls take a fresh look at females in America – investigating issues like gender, bisexuality, sex work, motherhood and more. Subscribe to her blog at Darrahdejour.com/, and friend her on Facebook.