The Art of Darkness

So Now I’m a Sex Therapist

August 10th, 2009 by Cobwebs

I’m always amused when journalists contact me because they want to interview a representative Goth, not only because of the misconception that “goth” is some sort of monolithic single category but also because of the misconception that I represent anybody. (Did you guys know I’m your queen? Why aren’t you peeling me grapes?) The latest was Nerve.com, who feature a weekly column called “Sex Advice From…” where the “from” varies each week. This week was Sex Advice From Goths, and I was one of the individuals asked to provide input.

We’ll pause a moment for the laughter to die down.

The Nerve column is here. They give all of the participants 15 questions but only publish a subset of the answers due to space constraints, so if you’re interested in my continued ramblings on the subject my full set of answers is below. Proceed at your own risk.

1.) Who would make a better lover and why?–Robert Smith from The Cure, Al Jourgensen from Ministry and Revolting Cocks (or RevCo), Peter Steele from Type O Negative, or Glen Danzig?

….sorry, about 250 “Revolting Cocks” jokes occurred to me and my cerebrum fused. I’m going to choose Robert Smith; any man who can wear more makeup than I do and still look sexy is probably an animal in bed.

2.) Is wearing all black emblematic of a gloomy love life?

When a non-goth girl wants to look really sexy, what does she do? Wears black. We just prefer to look like that all the time. (Velvet, leather, latex, lace, big dark eyes and lush red lips…sexual fantasy or typical goth attire?)

3.) How can I seduce a Goth? And how would a Goth seduce me?

“Goth” covers a lot of ground, from steampunk to fetish, so I’m going to assume you mean the standard-issue “vampire with a side of emo” mainstream image of what a Goth is. They tend to be dark and brooding, focusing on the sensual and mysterious. Get to them through poetry and literature, and wear velvet. A Goth would seduce you by appealing to your sense of the enigmatic and forbidden. There’s a reason that sexy vampires are such an enduring image in pop culture.

4.) The stereotype on Goths is that they have a cynical and/or nihilistic perspective on life and the world. Even if this stereotype, like most stereotypes, isn’t generally true, would a nihilistic perspective—where nothing holds and anything goes–carry over into sex? If not, why not?

Nihilism carries a strong flavor of meaninglessness and ennui. If sex isn’t exciting and life-affirming you’re doing it wrong.

5.) What can we learn from Goth culture about love and sex?

Goth culture esteems mementos mori–reminders that death is always with us. It gives us a deep appreciation for the here and now. Sex is fleeting, so get the most out of it that you can. Love…well, although it’s as impermanent as life itself, look at themes such as those found in Poe: Love unto the grave, and beyond. Goths can be terribly romantic.

6.) Would you date someone who is from the opposite end of the cultural spectrum (i.e. a country-boy/girl or city hipster), and why or why not?

I’d never say never, but there would have to be an extremely compelling reason to date someone whose tastes and views were so radically different. Mind-blowing sex isn’t worth being dragged to an Oak Ridge Boys concert for.

7.) How would you compare the love-lives of the following: a literature-enthusiast, and someone whose daily reading consists of skimming the back of a cereal box whenever they’re bored at the breakfast table?

Goths by nature tend to be introspective, and if you’re going to spend a lot of time inside your own head you should make sure it’s well-furnished. Not reading indicates a lack of imagination, and I’d have to wonder where else imagination might be lacking.

8.) I met someone recently who’s shy but who I’m sexually attracted to. Without scaring her away, when should I stop being friendly and start being flirty?

Don’t flirt at all. Be mysterious and intriguing. Hint at hidden heartbreak in your past. Let her draw you out.

9.) The sexual chemistry between me and my current boyfriend are great, couldn’t be better. But there’s a problem—he can be conversationally inept. The awkward silences can be too much, and it’s starting to bother me. What should I do?

If there are topics that interest him, drop one of those into the conversation as a way to keep him talking. You could also simply stop viewing the silence as awkward; there’s no rule that says you have to be constantly chattering at each other.

10.) My girlfriend always wants to have phone sex whenever we’re apart, but I can’t help thinking how silly it might be. Do I reassure here that it’d be best if we wait until we’re together again, or am I the one being silly here?

How likely is she to secretly put you on speakerphone? Seriously, though: Where men tend to be more visually-oriented, women are beguiled by words. Pick up a book of erotica and read some of the more descriptive passages for ideas, then use the same sort of imagery on the phone with her. She definitely won’t think it’s silly. (Be careful to sound sincere; if you can’t stop laughing it’ll just make her mad.)

11.) How can I have a quickie without being too obvious?

Yell, “Look, a pterodactyl!” then duck into a closet when everyone’s back is turned. (Unless it’s in front of your boss, your parents, or your priest, why do you care if you’re being obvious? See above, about sex being exciting and life-affirming. Seize the moment. It’s good for you.)

12.) My girlfriend LOVES dancing; not only am I bad at it, I HATE it. What can be done?

At the very least you should compromise. If it’s something that she really enjoys, do it once in a while to please her. (This also gives you a bit of leverage when you really want to do something that she hates.) However, the reason you hate it so much may be because you’re bad at it. Consider taking lessons. Your girlfriend will be thrilled that you care enough to do something just for her, which will pay dividends later. (If you want a Gothier answer: Suffer in silence and write poetry about the sacrifices you make for love.)

13.) I recently met someone, and the times we’ve had together were great. But sudden circumstances had cut short what could have been a romance, forcing us to be miles and miles apart. Should I believe that there is still some hope in the end, or should I give up and be content with just being friends?

Goth is ALL ABOUT the unrequited love, but in the real world this kind of thing works best if both parties are in the same emotional boat. If she seems to be similarly willing to keep the spark alive, by all means give romance a try.

14.) A friend of mine keeps confusing me. She talks to me like a close brother, revealing her recent crushes and conquests, but sometimes jokes that she’s really into me. The jokes have been so numerous, however, that I’m starting to get curious. Should I make a move and see what happens, or is it too risky?

Faint heart ne’er won fair maiden, pal. Have a frank talk and explain that her behavior is confusing you. This will give you both a good opportunity to discuss your real feelings for each other, and if she doesn’t mean to be leading you on it should stop her from sending mixed signals.

15.) I’m very choosy when it comes to potential serious relationships. That being said, I feel lonely sometimes. Should I stop being so choosy and finally branch out, or is it best to be this way?

Depends on your definition of “choosy.” Do you mean that if a potential partner doesn’t meet every single one of your “perfect mate” criteria, you reject them? Definitely branch out and perhaps take a strong dose of Reality. View a potential partner in terms of things that you’re willing to compromise on (leaves socks on the floor) and things that you aren’t (puts babies on spikes). If you simply can’t compromise any further without being miserable, learn to embrace the solitude until the right one comes along. There’s no need to feel lonely between relationships: Take up a new hobby, join a club, or do something else that allows you to interact with others.

Posted in Whatever | 4 Comments »

4 Responses

  1. JoAsakura Says:

    Wait, I thought your legion of shoe-gazing stereotypical emo boys were supposed to be doing the grape peeling. I’m only filling in on directing the waving of the giant black ostrich feather fans ^.~

  2. ShrellHawk Says:

    *genuflects abjectly and begins to look frantically for any grapes that might be handy*

  3. Pam Says:

    I loved the interview!

  4. Kitten Herder Says:

    The interview was fabulous. Perhaps you should start a regular Goth advice column.

    BTW, the “babies on spikes” line reminded me of an Eddie Izzard stand-up routine. Thanks for that!

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