Thought Catalog


5 Real Sex Stories That Will Make You Really Horny (Part V)

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 08:00 PM PST

Shutterstock, Forewer
Shutterstock, Forewer

1. Why apologize when you can make your significant other orgasm instead?

"A few weeks after moving in together, I had this grand plan to seduce my boyfriend right after he got home from work. I was wearing this sexy long lace kimono and a barely there bra and panty set. I’d even bought this lubricant that heats up on contact with skin and a vibrating cock ring just for the occasion. By the time he got home, though—three hours late—my sexual energy was completely zapped. I was snuggled up on the couch in my cozy robe watching TV when the man entered and I wanted nothing to do with him. Until he said, ‘Hate fuck me.' Those three words triggered something deep inside me. I stood up immediately, stripped the robe off, and dragged him into the bedroom. With as much force as I could muster, I shoved him onto the bed, mounted him, and pinned his arms down above his head. I fucked him hard—on my terms. It was the hottest experience for both of us."

— Female, 27

2. The wetter the better.

"Sex in the shower usually sucks. But random sex in an outdoor shower on a sweltering night in a small beach town is seriously life-changing. I rented a room in a house in Montauk this past summer for a week to get out of the city and spend some QT with myself. What I didn't expect is that the person I rented from would be this mad sexy, mysterious middle-aged woman. On my first night, she left her bedroom door open just enough so I could catch a glimpse of her hot, half naked body as I walked to my room down the hall. On night three, I was taking a shower outside around 10pm when I saw the door latch rise. I knew it was her, and I was rock hard by the time the door swung open. She was wearing a string bikini bottom, no top, and her nipples were just as erect as my dick was. I pulled her close to me and fingered her pussy until it was as drenched as our bodies. Then I fucked her from behind, standing up, beneath the shower head and the fucking stars."

— Male, 30

3. Lez-be-more-than-friendly.

"I was staying with my lesbian friend in the Bay Area a couple months ago and she took me to a sex party. Since I’m hetero through and through, and I didn’t think I’d be at all turned on. I just planned to hang out, eat some snacks, and watch the action. At first I felt a little awkward and creepy about it, but a couple cocktails cured me of any weirdness. Soon enough, I was entranced—and, to my complete surprise, horny AF. All of those beautiful naked female bodies! Some people paired off in corners, but I wanted in on the orgy. I had no idea what I was doing, but everyone was understanding and tender. At one point, two different blonde girls were sucking on my breasts while another fucked me with a dildo. I’ve never screamed harder than when I climaxed with all those women on the same mattress. It was ecstasy. Makes you wonder: Do we ever need penises?"

— Female, 24

4. High times on campus grounds.

"I went to my ten year college reunion on the back of a bitter breakup, on a mission to get laid. Of course, most of my classmates showed up with their significant others in tow. A bunch of 'em even had a kid or two. So the options were limited. By Sunday morning I was convinced I'd struck out, but as I was exiting the bathroom in the auditorium after the Dean of Admissions gave his final good-bye speech, which was really a pitch for donations, this sexy brunette I didn't recognize asked me for a light. When I told her I’d given up cigarettes, she winked and pointing to the joint between her fingers. So I said, ‘I've got matches,' and led her to this grassy nook behind the school cafeteria where I'd smoked up with buddies dozens of times back in the day. We got stupid high together and fucked like a couple of campus squirrels in heat right there on the ground. It was the best sex I'd had since college, hands down. We’re actually dating now and our sex life is still great, but nothing compares to that first night."

— Male, 31

5. The amateur adulteress at play.

"My husband insisted on binge watching The Affair a month ago and it affected us both. After five years of marriage and eight straight years of monogamy, we decided to give each other a pass to mess around outside the relationship. So when I found myself flirting back and forth with a ruggedly handsome older man at a coffee shop one recent weekend, I stepped right over the line with purpose. I actually said, 'Let's get out of here,' like they do in the movies. After popping into a pharmacy for condoms, we booked  a room at a nearby hotel. We danced to jazz music and stripped, bit by bit, over the course of a song. Then he scooped me up into his arms, laid me down softly, and went down on me. I orgasmed more intensely than I had in years from oral sex. It was an out-of-body experience, I swear. I still have rug burn from kneeling to return the favor. I gave that dick my all. We never did use those condoms, but I’m sure they'll come in handy the next time we meet up."

— Female, 34 TC mark

When Do You Just Accept That You’re Alone?

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 07:30 PM PST

WR36
WR36

Anybody would kill to be with you. 

You’ll meet someone, it’s just not the right time yet. 

They’re out there, I promise. 

You’ve heard it in various forms, a million times over. All said with good intentions by people who genuinely care about you. People who really believe that you’re going to find someone, and who want you to believe it too.

But how many times can you force a smile, nod your head, and put on a happy face in order to placate your friend with the worried look?

How many social events or family gatherings do you have to go to before your singleness can just become a simple aspect of your life right now, instead of an urgent, complicated mystery that your aunt is convinced she can solve?

I would like to say the same things to you that everyone else is saying. Just hang in there. There are plenty of fish in the sea. You don’t need someone else to be happy. You’ll find them as soon as you stop looking.

But that’s not going to make you feel better. Because well-intended or not, you’re sick of hearing that crap. Those things are just going to make you feel even more frustrated than you already are. If somebody’s out there, where are they? Wouldn’t I have found them already? If anyone would kill to be with me, why am I alone? If I don’t need someone else to be happy, then why am I so unhappy being by myself?

But the thing about falling in love is that it does’t make any sense. There is no predictability to who gets to be in a loving relationship and who does not. If you’re closed-off, negative, selfish, and difficult to deal with, then sure, your loneliness is your own fault. But most of the single people I know are the most genuine, loving, open, and warm people in my life.

But they’re still alone. Not because their job isn’t good enough, or they’re not exciting enough, or because of an “extra twenty pounds” they think the need to lose. They’re alone because sometimes that shit just happens. Being a kind, generous person does not automatically lead to love. Neither does a certain level of attractiveness, or a salary range, or an outgoing personality.

There’s nothing you’re doing wrong. There’s nothing you’re missing. Your friend who just got married isn’t more deserving of love than you. They just happened to find somebody, and you haven’t yet.

So when do you give up? When do you stop chasing love and start telling people you’re at peace with your “situation” and this is just the way it is for you?

The shitty answer is that there is no answer. There is no age where you owe it to society to just throw in the towel. There’s also no rule saying you can’t change your mind. If you’re twenty-seven and sick of sifting through Tinder, and you just want to accept that you’re alone right now, just do it. Take a fucking break. Be alone. Hate it. Love it. Decide for yourself how you feel about it instead of politely listening to others. And if you decide at thirty that you don’t want to accept the fact that you’re alone anymore, change your mind if you damn well please.

People are always going to try to tell you how to feel. I’m doing it right now in this essay. If it helps, great. If it doesn’t, ignore me. Besides a select few, we’re a species built on empathy. We want to help each other. When we see someone struggling, we’ll say anything we can to make them smile, to make them feel even just a little bit better. So accept the love, accept the good intentions, but remember that at the end of the day, it’s up to you when you want to just accept that you’re alone. You can always change your mind. TC mark

13 Inspiring Reasons Why Travelers Are The Best Job Candidates

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 07:00 PM PST

withinroots
withinroots

Traveling is a new form of education. You learn different skills while traveling than you would during school. Travel builds character and educates us naturally by experiencing and doing ourselves, much more than education from text books. Yes, travelers have gaps in their resumes. And yes, travelers will ask you how long they have off during the year, yearning for their next vacation. Yet travelers are the best people to hire.

We are a new generation: we are the millennials. We are shaking things up, taking gap years, learning the new social media trends, always looking for a new exciting adventure and have a closet full of participation trophies.

However, recruiters see those gaps and can’t help think, "What were they doing for that period of time?" They see unemployment, un-ambition, and a whole lot of partying (well, at least my mom thinks so) but we need to throw out these misconceptions because companies will be losing the best future employers.

We have been traveling, growing ourselves, discovering who we are and who we ultimately want to be. Travelers bring tons of unique benefits to an employer and are so well-rounded! So travelers, it’s time to highlight your travel experiences when applying for a job!

This is why businesses should hire a traveler.

1. We like to try new things.

Ever tried scorpion? Or sleeping in a tent? Obviously, these aren’t work experiences people encounter everyday, but ultimately, travelers like to try new things. Whether it’s a new software program, excel sheet, or a restructure, travelers will always try something new at least once and will learn to make the most of it.

2. We can negotiate our butts off!

Have you ever been to Asia or South America? Well, you will know that you have to haggle for almost everything. Find the item you want, be set on the price you want and how you will get it. In other words, we can negotiate with other businesses pretty well. We have a goal in mind like a future partnership or a new deal, and we will negotiate the heck out of it until we get what we want.

3. We know how to budget.

Journeyed candidates know how to stretch a dollar. We can make a whole lot with just a little. Making budget reports and staying within budget is second nature to us. How much travel can we get out of X amount? We can do the same with your business.

4. We take risks.

As travelers, we are faced with stressful and different situations that force us to push ourselves out of our comfort zones. But we are willing to overcome our fears of the unknown and explore it. We jump off cliffs, eat mystery meat in Asia, and ride in tuk tuks so a bit of a business risk is nothing for us to fear, but rather embrace. Hey, the best experiences happen outside of our comfort zones and so do the greatest successes.

5. We know how to adapt to change.

As travelers, we thrive on change. We hop place to place, use different currencies, adjust to all time zones, and change our environments constantly. Basically, we adapt easily. We are much more open to change and can adjust with no trouble in regards to reorganization and management alterations a lot better compared to those who don’t venture out.

6. We are cultural thinkers.

Travelers will know how to deal with people from different cultures and backgrounds. With such an interconnected world, this will become more and more important. We know how to communicate with other cultures, respect customs, and accommodate to other countries which is essential to networking.

7. We can say "thank you" in many languages.

Businesses often work with other countries. A traveler loves to pick up languages from the countries they’ve traveled to and it is much appreciated when dealing with international clients. We are invaluable for communication at trade shows, conferences and networking events. You don’t know how far a simple "M’goi" (thank you in Cantonese) goes when speaking to fellow Chinese businessmen. We aren’t fluent but it shows we are trying to accommodate them.

8. We have good communication skills.

Not only are travelers willing to learn a few words in another language, but we have to talk to locals to see the best of the city. We talk to the people in our hostels to hang out. We love to get to know other travelers and travel together. We aren’t afraid of conversation, we can make a good chat out of anything, we connect to people on a deeper level and love to hear different opinions. That, my friend, makes a great salesman.

9. We are quick to make decisions.

Frequent travelers have to make decisions all the time while they are on the go. They have to weigh up the pros and cons of transportation, accommodation, and assessing risks. We travel for a limited time, so to maximize both time and money, we are efficient decision makers.

10. We are willing to learn.

You won’t find many travelers who sit in hotels and pools all day and say they have traveled that city/country. Travelers have a dire need to learn about the world around them. We want to learn about new cultures, customs, and traditions. We travel to learn about this big world, about ourselves and about other people.

11. We are good at problem solving.

Missing flights, delayed busses, lost suitcases? We have all been there, but travelers know how to keep their cool when something goes wrong. In event planning, something always happens (seriously, no event goes perfectly), but it is the way we manage the issue and solve the problem that makes work out in the end. It’s like they say "It’s not about the destination, it’s about how you get there."

12. They tell great stories.

Graduates leave their school of partying, college bubble, and alas, find a job. They went to school, they played sports, and maybe won a championship. But travelers leave the home of their comforts, explore beyond their social circles, and see the world. Travelers have great stories, many interests, and can keep you wanderlusting for days.

13. We are dreamers.

Travelers see the beauty in things that aren’t so beautiful. They are able to see the world in a different way. It’s not ordinary, it is magical. Therefore, when we work, we want to make our workspace our new world while bringing value and culture to the workspace. TC mark

I Found An Abandoned Fridge In Our Alley And Wish I Never Knew What Was Inside

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 06:15 PM PST

Flickr, Kostas Venzlauskas
Flickr, Kostas Venzlauskas

I guess it would’ve been better if I hadn’t been stoned at the time.

I was just running out the trash, see, it was Saturday night and we were all getting baked to marathon-watch “BoJack Horseman” and my girlfriend complained she couldn’t fit anything else in the garbage can. Rather than risk an argument about how I’m always the one who takes out the trash — even though I am — I just tied the bag up, slipped on my shoes, and ran it out to the dumpsters in the alley behind the house.

Bulky pickup must be tomorrow because I noticed an awful lot of large items next to the dumpsters. They spanned all the way down the alley, all our neighbors throwing out the big stuff they didn’t feel like hauling to the junkyard. A set of drawers, an old TV with the fat part on the back, a haphazardly dismantled couch. Looked like someone took a saw to it.

Next to our particular dumpster was just one of those vintage fridges. You know, old-old like you’d see in “Leave It To Beaver” or “I Love Lucy.” They’ve got the solid white retro-futuristic shapes, long silver handles. I was stoned, remember, so I kind of laughed to myself because it reminded me of what the 1940s thought a spaceship might look like.

I opened the dumpster and dropped in the full-to-bursting trash bag of beer bottles and McDonald’s remains. I let the lid of the dumpster close with a bang.

Before I headed back inside I stood there for a moment, savoring the unseasonably warm December weather, and almost immediately jumped when I heard:

“Hey, who’s out there?! Help me! Get me outta here!”

It was coming from the fridge.

I had a brief flash of one of those old 80s shows, a “very special episode” where a kid gets trapped inside a refrigerator by accident. What was it? “Diff’rent Strokes?” “Family Ties?”

I couldn’t remember.

“Yeah, kid, I’m here,” I said, immediately tugging on the handle of the fridge. It didn’t open, handle didn’t even budge.

“Oh, thank you, thank you,” the kid said tearfully, because it was a kid, a little one it sounded like. “It’s getting hard to breathe in here! Please get me out!”

I pulled again and again. No dice. It was like someone had sealed the thing shut.

Shit. My pleasant high had floated away and was replaced by a jittery sort of panic.

“Hold on, kid,” I said, looking around for another adult, maybe someone who was a better adult, more adult-y than me in this current situation. “I’ll get you out, just don’t freak out or anything.”

“My big brother,” the kid said, sort of ignoring me and sounding more upset as he went on, “my big brother, he told me this would be a good hiding spot for hide and seek, he said it was the best spot and he really deserved it but he wanted me to hide here!”

“Okay, that’s fine.” Jesus, when was the last time I worked out? Why couldn’t I get this stupid door open?

“He’s usually so mean, my brother Johnny, I was so happy he was being nice for once!” The kid took in a deep breath, shuddery and sad. Or sort of like he was running out of air.

“I’ll be right back, kid, I’m gonna get this thing open, just wait.”

“NO!” he shouted, and it sounded like he was pounding on the door with both hands. “No, please don’t leave me, please don’t leave me here by myself! I don’t know how long I’ve been in here and I’m so scared!”

Oh Jesus I wished I hadn’t smoked right before I ran the trash outside.

I stopped between my garage and the fridge, hesitating, totally unsure what to do.

“You need to calm down,” I said, kind of both to the kid and myself at the same time. “I’m just going to the garage, I’m going to find something to get the door open. Just wait just one second, okay? I won’t leave you alone long.”

A pause, then:

“Please hurry,” the kid said miserably.

I did. I hurried to the garage and searched it, frantic, finding only old half-inflated soccer balls and dirty Swiffer mops I’d abandoned there to die. I wanted a crowbar, I needed a crowbar, but how often do you spot one of those in the garage of a bunch of 20-somethings who don’t have their shit together quite yet?

But then, in a haphazard hefty tupperware full of miscellaneous tools, I spotted it: a huge, heavy-duty hammer. Probably not ours, probably the landlord’s, but fuck it. I didn’t think he’d mind if I used it to save a little kid’s life.

I scrambled back to the old fridge and, after giving it one or two more experimental pulls on the handle to be sure I wasn’t just too baked to figure it out, started working the claw end of the hammer into the seam between the door and the fridge itself.

“Johnny’s always so mean to me,” the kid said as I dug and pulled, dug and pulled. “Like he doesn’t even want me around. He says Mama and Pop should’ve stopped after him. He wants to be the baby and I’m the baby and it makes him so mad.”

“Uh huh,” I said, hardly listening as I struggled to make headway. It never even occurred to me to get anyone else’s help, you know?

“I thought he was being nice. For once. Shoulda figured.”

“Uh huh,” I said again. I had managed to work one of the claws into the rubber seam and was trying to get the other one in there.

“Maybe he didn’t do it on purpose, though?” The kid’s voice was pathetically hopeful and it made me feel so bad for a second. Then, I remembered: “Punky Brewster.” That was the show where the kid got trapped in a fridge. I saw it on one of those clickbait nostalgia-type articles.

Suddenly the hammer got some traction and the fridge door was opening, I pulled as hard as I could and the door was opening and then —

Nothing.

There was nothing inside.

I stood there for a long moment, staring, utterly unsure of what to think or believe or even do. I almost jumped out of my skin when I heard:

“Hey there sport, whatcha looking at?”

It was my neighbor across the way, the one I shared an alley with who lived on the street beyond mine. Mr. Sanders. Nice dude. The old guy was tottering towards me as his ancient overweight dachshund, Buttons, waddled his way around the yard to do his business.

“This fridge,” I said, and then stopped, because there was nothing else I could say.

“Oh, found my old fridge, didja?” He gave me a smile that was missing quite a few teeth and leaned against the gate of his backyard fence. “Pretty neat, huh? Don’t make ’em like that anymore, no sir-ee.”

“It’s your fridge?” I said dumbly. In my pocket, my phone buzzed once. A quick glance saw a text from my girlfriend:

Where r u? Waiting on u 4 Bojack

“Yup.” Mr. Sanders regarded the fridge fondly from his spot on his property. “Parents found it in the dump when I was a kid. Never really worked, but they brought it home anyway. Just sorta stayed in the basement after they died. They couldn’t bear to part with it, I guess. Thought I’d do some spring cleaning, get rid of it.”

It’s December but yeah, whatever. Then, something horrible occurred to me.

“Mr. Sanders,” I started, but he grinned again, flashing all those empty spaces between his teeth.

“No reason to be so formal! You can call me John.”

John.

“You ever have a little brother, John?”

His face closed up then. It was like all the muscles in his face sort of let go, then tensed again in a look that wasn’t very nice at all.

“No.” Mr. Sanders snapped his fingers impatiently in the direction of Buttons, urging him to finish his business. “Only child, as it were.” Then he spotted the hammer in my hand. His eyes flicked from it to the open door of the fridge. “Whatcha up to there, sport?

I closed the fridge door, fast.

“Nothing. Just getting rid of some garbage.”

Mr. John Sanders stared me down for a long moment before smiling again. This one, though, it was all teeth (or missing teeth.) No eyes behind it.

“You and me both, sport,” he said. “You and me both.” TC mark

Just Breathe

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 05:45 PM PST

Twenty 20 / dmitriylo
Twenty 20 / dmitriylo

In yoga, when you find yourself in a challenging pose, you are often told to "focus on your breath." At least that has been my experience on the mat, having taken yoga sometimes religiously, sometimes occasionally, for the last six years. It's also true in strength training that utilizes isometric holds, such as a wall sit, or perhaps when you are doing distance running, and your body and mind are constantly fighting an internal battle – "focus on your breath" becomes a way to engage the mind, body, and maybe even the spirit.

If you talk to many people who work in the wellness, fitness, and health industry, and especially in instructing exercise – or even enthusiasts (like yours truly) – they might tell you that breathing or breathing well is often underemphasized. A strength trainer once put it like this, "Breathing is not something we think about ordinarily. I mean you go through the day, you're not thinking about how to breathe, or that you're breathing, for most of it. But all of a sudden your body is doing something challenging, and you forget to breathe."

As a writer, I could not help but see the metaphor in the observation, and indeed ask the question, mostly to myself, "When life is challenging, how many of us forget to breathe?" The answer, I think, is many of us, and often.

When we find ourselves in the midst of chaos and difficulty, we are so consumed by it, that we may hold our breath. The irony of course, is just like in yoga or strength training or running, when you hold your breath in the midst of the challenge, the exercise actually becomes more difficult for your body (and your mind) to manage and complete. This might also be true in life. But what does it mean to forget to breathe in our ordinary lives?

It might mean, I think, to forget that a challenge is not permanent, but temporary. It might mean believing that keeping the pain in, rather than letting it out, is the best way to handle the pain. It might mean trying to ignore the suffering or the despair, rather than enduring it. Or it might mean not realizing or recognizing the profound reality of humanness – your weaknesses, the things beyond your control, life's defeats – and forgetting that in the moment, there is nothing to accomplish but breathing. In fact, in the simple but spectacular words of that Ingrid Michaelson song, "All you can do is keep breathing."

It might surprise you to know that some health clubs or spas or wellness retreats even offer breathing classes. They're quite helpful if you want to improve your breathing on the mat or on the running trail. In life of course, we don't really get breathing classes, do we? But we get something better: loving families, good friends, kind strangers, well wishes, heartfelt prayers, and sincere and transformative words, art, and music.

These people and these things can be our breathing lessons, and in the midst of the challenges, maybe you and I can recall one of them and for a moment, say to ourselves, "Focus on the breath." In the midst of the challenge, sometimes the only thing to do, is just breathe. TC mark

We Have To Stop Trying To Let Go

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 05:30 PM PST

A.mop
A.mop

Some people welcome defeat.

This is a notion it took me over two decades of living to fully understand – that some of us are okay accepting our failures, almost willingly laying down our swords to let life bowl us over.

To some, failure is seen as a necessary component of living. It is not only required but welcomed – viewed as an opportunity to stop pursing the wrong course of action and begin chasing after the right one.

In many ways, this is a wholly sensible mindset. And yet it is never one I have been naturally partial to.

When it comes to accepting failure, I've always related heavily to the line from David Foster Wallace's 'Infinite Jest' that states:

"Everything I've ever let go of has claw marks on it."

Letting go has always been a struggle for me. Once I decide that I want something, you'll have to pry that thing from my cold, lifeless fingers before I let it get away. Even if the fight for it stops making sense. Even when letting go becomes – by all objective measures – the more sensible thing to do.

And I believe that so many of us are this way. Holding on is a challenge but letting go is an even greater one – sometimes a seemingly insurmountable one.

We know that we ought to move on, but an incredibly stubborn portion of our mind has become fixated. And so we enter into a mental tug-of-war – we fight to hold on. And we fight to let go. At the end of each day our hands are calloused and we have accomplished nothing. The struggle to move on in a deliberate and controlled fashion ironically keeps us stuck right in the thick of it all.

Because here's what they don't tell you about letting go: It is an inherently paradoxical notion.

The harder we fight to leave the past behind, the tighter the past clings to our sides. The more energy we expend trying to tie up loose ends, the more pressure we pile onto the new beginning that we are forming. And our life crumbles under that pressure. When compared side-by-side, the present never looks as good as the past, because we've idealized the hell out of the past. What imperfect present stands a chance against that?

What they don't tell you about letting go is that for it to work, it has to happen unintentionally. Trying to let go is like the senseless mind game we used to play as children – as soon as you're thinking about the game, you've lost. You can only win by ceasing to play.

In the same vein, letting go will never happen until we stop trying to force it to.

We don't let go by staring at the past and willing it to disappear. We let go by welcoming the present. By inviting it into our lives. By saying “Yes” to where we are instead of just “No” to where we’re not.

For a while, we simply have to let the past and the present inter-mingle – engaging in an uncomfortable fusion of who we've been and who we have yet to become. It's an unwelcome condition at first. But it's one that lets the past naturally bleed itself dry. It's one that carves out room for real change.

Because the truth is, we don’t let go by deliberately trying to do so.

We let go by carefully, uncomfortably uncurling our fists, opening our palms, and welcoming the new into our lives.

With time, whatever is meant to come next falls into our open palms.

And in the midst of living, whatever we’re meant to leave behind slips carefully, scarcely noticed, through our fingers. TC mark

5 Signs He’ll Never Give You The Commitment You’re Looking For

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 04:49 PM PST

Twenty20 / john
Twenty20 / john

The one question you will never hear a guy ask when he starts dating a girl is: "Will she commit to me?" It just doesn't happen. Questions and uncertainties regarding commitment seem to be reserved for the ladies.

Women of all ages and across all cultures are united in their quest to determine the following: Does he like me? Is he serious about me? Will he ever commit to me? And trust me, I get it. I've experienced those gut-twisting feelings, the ones the leave you with a constant sense of impending doom in the pit of your stomach causing you to question everything, including yourself.

It's understandable. I mean, there is a lot at stake when you put your heart on the line and you can end up wasting months, or years, of your life on a man who never intended to keep you around for the long haul. And the aftermath of these situations is never pretty.

So what can we do to spare ourselves the time, energy, and heartbreak that goes into determining how a man feels?

After giving this topic a lot of thought and consulting with several guys, I've uncovered five tell-tale signs that he isn't going to commit to you now or ever.

1. You don't know anything real about him

You can talk to someone for hours and hours every day and not know anything real about them. You might know details about their life, but you don't know who they are, their real and true self that exists beneath all the superficial fluff.

When a guy is serious about a woman, he shares himself with her. He lets her into his world and shows some level of vulnerability. This is a big thing for a man. Men aren't used to opening up and showing their emotions and they are much more selective when it comes to letting people in.

When a guy opens up to you, when he shares his dreams, his fears, his hopes, his wishes, his motivations, etc., he is investing in you. By investing in you, he is committing himself to you.

If a guy doesn't share his true self with you, if he won't let you see who he is at his core, the chances are high that he's not in in it to win it and doesn't see a future.

If you're really unsure as to whether a guy is serious about you or not, take a look at the things you know about him and consider if you know who he really is.

2. He disappears for days or weeks at a time, then acts like it was no big deal

If a guy truly cares about you, he will want to make room for you in his life. Even if he has a lot going on and won't be available for a few days, he'll send a text or message to let you know he's thinking about you.

If he takes vacations from the relationship with no warning it means he isn't worried about losing you, and this is never a good sign. If a guy knows for certain that you'll always be there waiting in the wings, no matter how badly he behaves, he won't respect you and he definitely won't want to commit to you–why should he when he knows he doesn't have to? There would be absolutely no benefit for him.

His disappearing acts serve more as a way to let you know this relationship isn't serious and he is still free to do what he wants. It's his way of letting you know that you aren't a deciding factor in where he goes and what he does.

3. He tells you he doesn't want a relationship

This seems like an obvious one, but unfortunately, it's not! In fact, I think the most common relationship in this day and age is the non-relationship, that is, when you're dating a guy and you're basically boyfriend/girlfriend aside from the fact that you're not.

The ugly truth is this: when a guy says he doesn't want a relationship, what he's really saying is he doesn't want a relationship with you.

I know you think you're the exception and your situation is different. I've been there and I'm telling you, it isn't. You're like every other girl in a non-relationship. You're a great girl who maybe sold herself a little short and is in a situation where the guy calls all the shots and is just taking you along for the ride as you sit patiently in the back seat, waiting for him to decide you're "good enough."

If he tells you he doesn't wan to be in a relationship, or he has "commitment issues" or hates labels, just take it at face value and do yourself a favor and move on.

4. He doesn't take you on real dates

If your dates consist of you going over to his place and watching a movie or you cooking for him, then he isn't taking you or the relationship very seriously.

When a guy is invested in you and cares about you, he wants to go out of his way to impress you and show you he cares. I know most women don't feel this way, but trust me, when a guy likes you, it's obvious.

If he puts in the bare minimum when it comes to dates it means he doesn't feel like you're worth the effort. Are there exceptions? Sometimes. But even if a guy is jobless and broke and doesn't have the money to take you out, he'll find some sort of cheap and creative way to show you he cares.

When a guy cares about a girl and sees a future with her, he wants to bring her into his world as much as possible. He wants to introduce her to the things he likes: movies, music, books, hobbies. These aren't things that require much of a financial investment but they speak volumes about his level of emotional investment.

If you're the only one making the effort to keep the spark alive and do special things, it's a sign that he isn't very invested in you.

5. He won't introduce you to his family

A lot of women make the mistake of thinking that meeting a guy's friends is a big deal. Maybe some guys view this as a big deal, but most don't. Maybe he just wants to show you off because you're hot, or maybe he just doesn't think much of introducing girls to his friends. I have plenty of friends who looked at meeting his friends as the holy grail… the tell tale sign that he's all in, he's committed. It's not. Meeting is family is where it's at. (Side note: While meeting his friends isn't the biggest deal, if he won't introduce you to them it's a definite red flag.)

When you're in a relationship, talk of meeting the family should come up. Maybe you don't meet them right away, but he should give you come sort of indication that it's on the horizon. At the very least, he should let you know that his family is aware of your existence.

If he doesn't talk about his family, or changes the subject anytime you bring it up, it's a sign that he has no intention of making the introduction.

As I mentioned earlier, when a man is serious about a woman, he brings her into his world. By keeping you away from his family, he's essentially saying he doesn't see you being in his world for the long run.

I should point out that there are guys who introduce almost every girl they date to their family and don't really see it as a big deal…and maybe their family is used to this revolving door of girlfriends. However, if he's serious about you, he will take this meeting a little more seriously than he has in the past. He'll be excited, and maybe a little nervous about you meeting them because he really wants them to like you, and for you to like them. If he doesn't really seem to care, then even if he does introduce you to them it's a sign he isn't fully invested in having a future with you.

This post originally appeared at A New Mode.

Quiz: What Major Change Should You Make In 2016?

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 04:23 PM PST

31 Times Tumblr Didn’t Hold Back

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 03:32 PM PST

Amazon / Fallout New Vegas
Amazon / Fallout New Vegas

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

11.

12.

13.

14.

15.

16.

17.

18.

19.

20.

21.

22.

23.

24.

25.

26.

27.

28.

29.

30.

31.

Can A Man And A Woman Really Have A Platonic Relationship?

Posted: 13 Dec 2015 03:14 PM PST

. Entrer dans le rêve
. Entrer dans le rêve

Let's say that a man and a woman are friends. They have known each other for a while and nothing has ever happened between them. By “nothing,” they mean that they've never kissed.

The chemistry between them is palpable and they've been in situations where he could have made a move but he did not. And she recognizes this and respects him for it. She knows that his intentions are ostensibly pure.

She may or may not find him attractive, but it doesn't matter. He's a good guy and she likes talking to him. And even if he's cute, she's not interested in him like that. Or so she thinks.

On the flip side, he thinks that she is sexy. He'd love to go out for drinks, take her back to his place, inch closer to her on the couch. But she's made it clear that she's not looking for a relationship or she's already in a committed one. He's a respectful guy and completely understands. He's been placed in the friend zone but he's not bitter about being there. In fact, he embraces the opportunity. He continues to message her because she's a cool chick.

And, honestly, when a hot girl messages you, it's impossible to ignore her. Especially when she's a nice person.

Because of his sincerity, she's comfortable enough to share her secrets with him. Stuff that she's not willing to tell her significant other, perhaps because he is not quite as understanding. Or maybe, it's bad stuff about her boyfriend. And you know what, it doesn't matter how independent a woman is—when her boyfriend messes up, she needs someone to talk to. More specifically, she needs to talk to a friend, someone she can trust.

Similarly, when his girlfriend is acting up, he will need an outlet. He'll need someone to be there for him. And you know what's remarkable… he's willing to have an emotional conversation… knowing that things won't get intimate. Over time, he became the Michael Jordan of the friend zone. He's not going to make a move because he doesn't want to jeopardize the friendship. It means too much to him.

Typically, women tend to be drawn to guys with good personalities. Yeah, of course, looks play a part. But as she continues to laugh uncontrollably at his corny jokes, as she continues to turn to him for his advice, as she continues to feel secure in his presence, she will begin to let down her guard.

On the other hand, men tend to be drawn to women who look good. He was first attracted to her because she had sex appeal but as he got to know her more and more—she became beautiful. Controlling his feelings will become that much more difficult. And when he is vulnerable, he's no longer in control.

The truth is, they may never do anything physical in life. They may never cross the line. But a relationship can never be truly platonic if you have to set up boundaries. A relationship can never be truly platonic if you have to adjust your feelings. A relationship can never truly be platonic if you have to pretend that you are happy with the way things really are…when deep down—you want something more.

And for some friends, they may eventually cross the line. Because, ultimately, we are human.

Disclaimer: If there is absolutely no physical attraction between a male and female, then, I would say, it is possible that they can truly share a platonic relationship. But once a man is attracted to a woman; or the woman is attracted to the man; or both are attracted to each other—the relationship cannot and will never be platonic.

You can, however, pretend that it is platonic. And for some people, this is good enough. TC mark