Thought Catalog

10 Ultra Sexy Role Play Ideas That Will Give You A Ridiculously Strong Orgasm

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 08:00 PM PST

Twenty20, kirillvasilevcom
Twenty20, kirillvasilevcom

1. Masseuse. Strip off your clothes and rest on your bed while your partner gives you a full-body massage. When he’s finished, put a pillow under your stomach and have him penetrate you from behind.

2. Teacher. Pretend you’re a college professor that’s marking papers and have your boyfriend (your student) figure out a way to convince you to raise his grade. This should include him lifting you onto your desk and eating you out.

3. Bad boy. Have him throw on a leather jacket and pretend to be the bad boy that your parents warned you about. When things get dirty, make sure to keep the noise to a minimum, like you’re sneaking around and don’t want anyone else to hear.

4. Painter. If you want to throw a little romance into the mix, have him sketch you before he sleeps with you. Walk into the room in a robe and then take it off when he’s ready to watch you pose.

5. Strangers. Meet up at your favorite bar — but give yourself a new name and identity. Pretend you’ve never met before. That you’re flirting for the very first time. When the sexual tension goes off the charts, ask him to meet you in the bathroom and have a quickie in one of the stalls.

6. Robot. This one doesn’t sound all that sexy, but it’s perfect if you’re submissive. Pretend your boyfriend owns you and you’re required to obey every order he gives you. Or vice versa.

7. Stripper. Sit your boyfriend down on a chair and perform a striptease for him. Play the sexiest music that you have on your iPod and then slowly remove your clothes. If you’re feeling extra sexy, you could even give him a lap dance. (All you really have to do is grind against his junk and stick your chest in his face. Simple.)

8. Cop. Buy a pair of fuzzy pink handcuffs and have your boyfriend lock them around your wrists. Then have him throw you onto your knees to give him a blowjob or onto the bed to do you doggy style.

9. Maid. Break out the props. Use a feather duster to tickle his skin. Spray whipped cream across your nipples. Lick chocolate off of his abs. See what’s in the fridge and figure out a way to work it into foreplay.

10. Favorite couple. Love Chuck and Blair? Barney and Robin? Aria and Ezra? Then pretend to be them. Reenact a scene from the show or create your own. It’ll be even hotter than you think. TC mark 

16 People Reveal The Dark Secret They Know About Someone Else (But Will NEVER Tell)

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 07:00 PM PST

1. It saved his relationship

My roommate punched himself in the eye and faked being jumped, because his girlfriend was about to break up with him. They are now married.

— beergoggler

2. He let his father die

I know a guy I grew up with who was beat all the time by his on/off alcoholic lumberjack dad.

One day the dad died from some heart failure or what not and when the cause of death report came out, it claimed he had been conscious after the incident had happened before he had died. My friend had told the police he had not been home but had biked to a friends house to see if he wanted to go play basketball.

I found out later at a party where we were drunk, when I asked him how it had been to come home to dead dad, that he had been home all the time and had heard his dad scream/gasp in pain and fall over but that he had just stood there, first empty, then smiling, as his dad withered in pain and slowly expired into unconsciousness and died. Then only when my friend was certain his dad was not waking up again, he called “911”.

Don’t hit your kids and expect them to come through for you.

— Adler4290

3. Big bucks kept shushed

I found out my dad won the lottery. He won around $250,000 and has never told me or my brothers. It took some digging to find so I never told anyone because I figure if he hasn’t told his family then he doesn’t want anyone to know.

— CptManhattan

4. Found dick pics sent to my daughter

I found the dick pics my (now) son-in-law sent my daughter. She had backed up her computer to an external hard drive and didn’t realize they went, too.

— odies1971

5. Had no idea what he was going through

Not recent, but I used to be in a Quake clan with another guy, we would play night and day. Lots of great matches, smack talk, conversations late into the night. I found out one day from a mutual friend that his mother was dying of cancer — slowly and very painfully. That’s what he was dealing with every day when he wasn’t death-matching.

I never told him I knew. I figured sometimes you just need to escape from reality. Gaming was the one place where he could forget his troubles and not have to think about them. If he wanted me to know he would have told me.

So instead we laughed a lot and talked about Quake and I was happy to be there for him.

— coupland

6. Uncle went to jail to protect child

The person knows I know but I would never tell my family. When my cousin was 5 or six he was not part of our family yet. My uncle met his mom and they fell in love and moved in with each other.

My cousin was still with his dad and my uncle and aunt were trying to get custody but her ex was a very wealthy man. Apparently he was also sexually abusing my cousin but it was hard to prove and her ex had some really good lawyers.

My uncle was not a rich man but they needed money for a lawyer and a special therapist for my cousin so they could win the case. He robbed his workplace for the cash to pay all the fees needed to get my cousin away from his dad. My uncle’s work found out and had him arrested he had to go to jail for 2 years, he told my family and everyone that he got a job abroad and had to leave for a few years so that he could pay for my cousins lawyers.

Everyone in my family still thinks that he went abroad to make extra cash only me and his wife know that he was in jail. My cousin is a very successful well adjusted happy man now, he doesn’t really remember anything about living with his dad. My uncle says he would do it again a thousand times if it meant my cousin growing up safe.

— tankgirl85

7. Secret about a co-worker

One day while looking through Flickr, I came across some nude pictures of my coworker. She has lots of photo albums on her account. Turns out she and her husband are swingers. I work with her on a daily basis. I would never tell her I have seen them.

— txpharmer13

8. Those candles weren’t for lighting (apparently)

When I first got married my sister in law was living with us. One day, while she was at work, she called and asked that I email something to her from her desktop. This was prior to texting and email on phones being so prevalent.

So, I used her laptop and her outlook to send the attachment. I checked the sent items to make sure it went through with the attachment and found an email she had sent to someone of a bunch of pictures of her with lit candles shoved up her ass. I never said anything but had to start hiding all of our stick candles in fear that she’d ass tip all my Yankees

— OGcodyc

9. Didn’t want to know that…

A close friend that I roomed with at college once had me log into their email to print out tickets. Found the tickets but also a decent amount of evidence that he had a strong scat fetish. Not sure that there is ever a way to bring that up in conversion.

— Inthemoondoor

10. Mom wanted to leave dad

My mom passed away a few years ago from Cancer. She went for an operation for something mundane and they found out she had cancer.

My parents worked hard and were good at saving. My mom managed the finances and did an amazing job. Now my dad is alone and keeps on telling me, “I wish your mom was here, I don’t know what to do with all this money. She would have known how to spend it together.”

The sad truth is before my mom went for her operation, she planned on leaving my dad after the whole ordeal was over. She told this to me privately. My dad basically told me he had the same plan privately.

After she got diagnosed, he stood by her side and worked from home for months so he could take care of her. He also did an amazing job arranging all aspects of her funeral, even though my mom entrusted that to her sisters.

I told my sister, but I don’t think I could ever tell him.

— NotFredFlint

11. Didn’t expect the end.

My ex used to go through my browser history and emails. She never found anything, but always thought I was up to something.

I knew this because I read her diary every day.

— canyoustopp

12. Tattled on my co-worker to help him

I used to work overnight security a couple of years ago. My partner (we will call him Bill) was struggling with some stuff left over from the Iraq war, and so we spent a lot of time getting to know each other better. Eventually, I promoted up to Supervisor, and then Assistant Director of Security.

One night, the guy who had replaced me on overnights called to complain about Bill coming in 3 hours late and drunk off his ass. I knew the guy was not good at keeping his lips sealed, and if I didn’t say something to my boss right away then he would. So, I called my boss (who usually shows up right after overnight leaves) and told him what was going on. My boss was also an Iraq veteran and he knew about the struggles Bill was having and how close the two of us had become, so I felt it would be better coming from my lips.

My boss came in early, caught Bill red-handed, and suspended him for a week. I’m instructed that when he gets back, to schedule him for day shifts so he can be supervised. We kept the whole thing hush hush and assumed he would improve once he was on day shifts.

So I do exactly that. Bill was elated to be working with me again and with our other buddies during the day (we were like one big family kind of. Really miss that place sometimes). He got better at his job, started sleeping regularly, and stopped drinking. Bill told me he was back on days because he wanted to be, he was tired of overnights. He never told me about the drinking, and I never told him I knew. We both kept that secret until he took his own life 2 months ago. Rest in Peace Bill, you are missed.

— Always_posts_serious

13. My mom was pressed into an abortion

My father admitted that he pressured my mother into an abortion before my brother and I were born. It was a huge wake-up call that kept me from going down a pretty shitty road with a guy I worked with, but I’ll never forget the look on his face when he admitted that to me. And I will never tell her that I know.

— riotzombie

14. Overheard younger sister say she was going to kill herself

I have a couple friends who are siblings in our friends group.

Myself and two others were in a Skype call with the younger sister while the older one was at work. We essentially heard her admit she was going to commit suicide that day. We had figured she was depressed and tried to help her the best we could.

The three of us and a couple parents ended up at her dad’s house and found her with her wrist sliced open in the bathtub and out cold from ODing. I slapped a tourniquet on and used towels to try to stop the bleeding while a parent called an ambulance.

The responding paramedics said that even though she didn’t cut her wrists properly, she still would have died if we didn’t show up and try to stop the bleeding.

Her older sister doesn’t know due to her parents request and it’s a closely kept secret in the group. Whoever wasn’t there doesn’t know. Her father (who hated me for different reasons) always invites me out to different events, but still keeps up the impression he doesn’t like me. It’s kind of weird.

— EBeast99

15. Married man gets $10 BJ outside gallery

A bummy kid we had to gently eject from a gallery opening spent his exit begging for a few bucks, offering to suck anyone’s dick for $10. It was an odd moment anyway, capped by an odd, sad offer.

Later, I went out on the fire escape for a smoke. In the alley below was a straight acquaintance — like square straight, married with kids and a boring career — leaning against the wall, bum guy’s head bobbing against his crotch, getting a $10 BJ from a sketchy tweaker.

My first instinct was to make some noise, my second was “I just don’t want to be involved in this”. Of course upon reentering the party, acquaintance’s wife was the first goddamned person who spoke to me. “Hey, have you seen bob? Is he out sneaking a smoke?” It was a weird moment. I’ve said nothing for a decade.

— sightlab

16. Cuck porn

When my brother came to visit for the holidays, he left his iPad on the counter and had Reddit up. I saw his username and that he had a ton of post karma, went back to my computer, and looked him up.

Cuck porn. Most of him and his ex-wife. Some with his new fiancee. It was pretty traumatizing.

— mmcleod24 TC mark

If You Feel The Sexual Tension In These 15 Situations, There’s Definitely Chemistry Between You

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 06:00 PM PST

Twenty20, edric
Twenty20, edric

1. When you’re in the middle of bantering, and suddenly the laughter trails off, and you’re looking each other in the eyes. Just looking. Admiring their glittering eyes and sideways smile in the silence while they do the same.

2. When you accidentally brush up against each other while sitting side-by-side. And neither of you inch away to establish your personal space, because you can’t stand the absence of each other’s skin.

3. When you hug without pulling away after the average amount of time. You take those scattered extra seconds to hold them close, sniff their cologne, feel their bones through their clothes. And they aren’t moving, either.

4. When you say something flirty about how gorgeous they are or about how you’d make a perfect couple. It’s clearly meant as a joke, but it doesn’t land that way. It sounds too serious. Too true to life. And there’s a noticeable shudder in the air before you lean the conversation in a different direction.

5When you’re standing across the room, but feel like you’re the only two people in that room, because your gazes keep meeting. You’re both in conversation with other people, but it doesn’t matter, because you’re not listening. Not really. Your eyes keep flicking back to your person. And they’re doing the same.

6. When you talk to them and you stand close. You wouldn’t let anyone else stand that close. Touch you for that long. But they’re the exception. It’s like your bodies are magnetized.

7. When there are other people around and there’s a thin layer of sexual tension. There’s not enough flirting for the others to realize the attraction, but there’s enough for you to realize it. It’s like you two have your own little secret. Like you’re having a private conversation everyone else can hear, but can’t really comprehend.

8. When the conversation hints at something slightly sexual and there’s a sudden change in their persona. Their voice gets lighter. Airier. More authentic.

9. When you see each other for the first time that day and exchange an unavoidably lusty look. They lick their lips. Flash their eyebrows. Do a once-over of your body. They’re taking in your beauty as you take in theirs.

10. When you’re finally alone together and things are… different. They’re sweet to you in groups, sure. But when you’re left one-on-one, you feel freer. Like you’re right where you’re supposed to be.

11. When you know that you should leave work or a party or their house, but they’re there, so you keep making excuses to stay for just a little longer. And they have the same idea.

12. When you touch each other for unnecessary reasons, like to run your hands through their new haircut or to compare your hand sizes. You just want to feel them. To be even closer to them.

13. When you trail off in the middle of your sentence, because you were distracted by their beauty and couldn’t remember what you were planning on telling them. And they seem amused by it.

14. When you wink at each other and it doesn’t feel forced or creepy or cliche. It feels flattering. Fun.

15. When you look at each other for just a second too long. Maybe a minute too long. It’s hard to pull your eyes away from their eyes, unless you’re glancing down at their lips in anticipation of a kiss. TC mark 

To The Girls Who Feel All Alone

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 05:00 PM PST

To all the girls who feel like they are all alone in this world, this is for you.

I hope you know that no matter what you are going through, you are not alone in how you are feeling. You are not alone no matter how many tears you shed, and no matter how bad you think this situation is.

Sadness and loneliness is inevitable. At some point in everyone’s lives, we all feel that way. We all feel that at times, the world gets to be too much. We all feel small and we all feel like we don’t have anywhere else to turn.

I know for you, right now the world is black and white. It’s messy and it doesn’t make sense. You feel like you’re drowning in a sea of worry and of loss. You don’t know why you are here, on this earth. And you don’t feel like anyone appreciates you for what you are.

And what you are is a beautiful, broken girl. Your eyes talk with sadness and regret. And your mouth stays silent. You would rather sleep all day, than greet the sunshine. You would rather be alone, than to spend a night in a crowded room, where you feel more lonely than ever have before.

You are broken. But that doesn’t mean you are permanently broken. You can bend. And you can get back to happiness again.

You can rise up from the ashes of your state of blue. You can see the light, even though right now your head is in a dark tunnel.

I promise, this feeling that you are feeling right now? It will get better. It won’t stay this way forever, this state of never ending agony. This feeling of loneliness that seeps into your heart every night.

Darling, you are loved, even if you don’t think that you are. You are lovable, even if you haven’t ever loved before. You are beautiful, even if you can’t see it yet.

And you are never, ever alone.

Even if you don’t have someone to greet you as you walk into your home. Even if you don’t have someone to lay beside you as you fall asleep. Even if you don’t have someone to kiss you each morning. You aren’t alone.

You have yourself. And you need to start treating yourself like someone worthy of loving.

Seriously, Don’t Lead Me On Because I’m Sick Of Getting My Hopes Up

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 04:00 PM PST

I’ve been broken, backstabbed, butchered, but I still have an unreasonable amount of trust in people. I still get my hopes up when I fall for someone new. And when that person doesn’t fulfill my expectations, the disappointment destroys me.

I hate that unexpected sinking feeling. When I’m perfectly happy and then I see the smallest thing, a text or a photograph or a smile aimed at another girl, and it ruins my entire day. It makes me feel like my insides are crumbling, creating a rockslide that leads to a lump in the center of my stomach. An inescapable pain that won’t go away. 

And then that’s all I can think about. I forget about how flirty we’ve been. About how our friendship has slowly been blossoming into something more beautiful. All I can think about is the one minuscule thing that gives me reason to doubt we’re ever going to become a couple.

It’s like jumping from a freezing cold pool into a hot tub, from one extreme to another. The change is too sudden. Too jarring. Too much for my body to take. 

I want to thank you for the bittersweet compliments and for all of our late night conversations. But I don’t want them anymore. I don’t want the high your smile gives me if it means that one day, I’m going to crash. Because I can’t handle the aftermath. 

If you don’t want me, it’s okay. That, I can handle. That, I can understand.

But I can’t take the suspense, the idea that your text is either going to make my day or ruin it entirely. And I don’t need to waste my minutes trying to interpret every word that drops from your lips or gets sent through your phone.

I’m tired of getting my hopes up. And I’m sick of that sinking feeling. 

So if you want me, don’t give me a reason to assume otherwise. Show me that I’m the only girl that you’re interested in so my paranoia doesn’t push us apart. Let me inside of your world so I can see I belong there.

And if you don’t want me, don’t be afraid to snap my heart in two. I’d rather hear that I’m not what you want today than have you play nice and lead me on for another week or month or year. I’d rather know where I stand than feel like I’ve lost my footing.

Please, whatever you do, don’t lead me on. Don’t give me the time and the materials I need to construct our imaginary future when you know you’re only temporary.

Please, just give me the truth. TC mark 

This Is Why I’m Scared To Date You

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 03:00 PM PST


I'm scared to date you because I don't know what dating is anymore. Is this the kind of dating where we say that we like each other and then pretend like we don't; as we continue talking to other people and just hang out whenever it's convenient for both of us or is this the kind of dating where we actually try to spend as much as time as we can together, getting to know each other slowly — knowing that I'm the only one you're talking to and you're the only I'm talking to.

I'm scared to date you because guys call girls like me 'non-chill' or worse 'needy' because we love a little harder, we fall a little faster and we don't care about how long it's been because our hearts don't really comprehend time, they only understand emotions and they only know how to love wholeheartedly, they don't know how to half-love or love with logic.

I'm scared to date you because I can see myself falling for you and I don't want to be the only one falling anymore. I'm scared because I don't know if we're both on the same page or if you're just lonely. I'm scared because I'm thinking of forever and you might be thinking of a little while. I'm scared because I know I'm looking for love but I don't know what you're looking for.

I'm scared to date you because everyone ends up leaving and I promised myself that I won't fall for someone who leaves again, I'll wait for the one who stays, the one who makes it work, the one who appreciates my love instead of labeling it.  I'm scared to date you because if you leave, it will break my heart.

I'm scared to date you because I'm scared to love you, I'm scared that I'll give you my heart and you'll break it, I'm scared that I'll tell you my secrets and you won't protect them, I'm scared that if I showed you my scars, you might not think I'm pretty and I'm scared to give you my all and be left with nothing.

I'm scared to date you but maybe if you let me know that your feelings are real and that you only want to date me, you can make me fearless and maybe then, I won't be so scared of dating anymore. I won't be so scared of you and the way you make me feel. TC mark

To The Girl He Fell In Love With Instead Of Me

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 02:00 PM PST

Daria Nepriakhina
Daria Nepriakhina

To the girl that he loves now,

I tried.

I really, really tried to get to him. I wanted him to be happy because he is one of those people who truly deserve happiness. He has gone through so much pain and endured so much sorrow. I thought it was time for him to experience what was constantly evading him–happiness in love.

It was always slipping from his grasp.

That is, until he met you.

It was foolish and naive and arrogant of me to think that I would be the one that could bring him happiness.

If I were the one, then I never would have witnessed all his sadness due to heartbreak. I wouldn’t have found him over-thinking all the things he might have done wrong. I wouldn’t have noticed the tears he was desperately trying to hide. And I wouldn’t have watched him blame himself for destroying something as precious as his friendship with someone else.

I wouldn’t have been able to observe all of this if I were the one, because if I were, he would already have been happy.

But I was not the one who could fill the hole in his heart.

To him, I was just a good friend he can rely on. I was a painkiller. Someone whom he can share his thoughts and ideas with so that he’d feel a bit better. But painkillers are not cures. I could never be a cure for him.

I was just a good friend.

But somehow, ironically enough, I am happy that I was just a friend.

I got to see him under a different light. I got to see a side of him that he usually keeps hidden.

And maybe these parts were the reason why I grew to love him more. I was happy that I was able to help ease even just a bit of his pain as a friend he can count on. And all this is thanks to our friendship which I really want to keep and which I really treasure. I endangered it far enough with these feelings of mine and I don’t want to cause him any more “trouble”. That’s one of the things I really don’t want to do.

So now, I am giving up.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not doing this because I don’t love him anymore. I am doing this because I love him that much.

And I am doing this because I know that he, with you, is at the verge of achieving the type of happiness I wanted him to experience so badly.

It turns out that fate has granted my wish to make him happy. Though as we all know, sometimes it grants it in ways we do not expect. Faith granted my wish. Faith granted my wish through you.

And that is why…

I want to say thank you.

I wish you both nothing less than the best. Though right now, everything might still be misty, I know everything will turn out fine. I know just because. Like how I knew he likes you that Monday morning when I saw you two together.

I am not going to tell you what to do to make him happy. Sincerely speaking, he found that happiness with you, not me, so I think you have a better idea on what to do. Whatever it is, I really do hope that you succeed, for yourself, and for him.

As for me? Well, I think it’s time for me to find my own happiness.

The happiness I wished for him so badly. The happiness I am wishing for you two now. The happiness I am sure, someday, I’ll achieve.

Take care of him, okay?

Sincerely yours,

The girl who has always loved him. TC mark

13 Men Talk About Why They Didn’t Take Their Almost Relationship To The Next Level (And What They’re Looking For Instead)

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 01:00 PM PST


1. “She didn’t seem like the type of girl who wanted something serious. She’d go out every weekend, get wasted to the point of ending the night with her head in a toilet, and a relationship just seemed way out of reach. I want a girl who I can see myself being committed to, not one that I have to convince myself is worth committing to.” —Peter, 25


2. “We were physically attracted to each other, no question about that, but we were both on the same page when we knew that’s basically the only attraction we had. There was no chemistry, or intriguing conversations, it was just sex, and we both knew we weren’t interested in anything else.” —Christopher, 26


3. “She was waaaay too high maintenance for me. She was a fun girl to take out to dinner, and to go to fancy work parties with, but she just wasn’t someone I could be in a serious relationship with. I like a girl who can go out to breakfast with me the next morning by just getting out of bed and throwing on a t-shirt, not a girl who spends 2 hours in the mirror just to get a waffle at the diner down the street.” —Lukas, 26


4. “There was nothing about her that made me say, ‘Wow, this girl is special.’ You might think that’s picky, but I want to be with someone who makes me think, there’s no other girl in the world like her.” —Ken, 24


5. “I don’t even know what an ‘almost relationship’ is, but if I don’t fully commit to a girl, it’s either because of timing, whether I’m really busy with life or my career, or whatever thing that isn’t a romantic relationship is consuming my attention, or it’s because we aren’t right for each other. Chemistry is this magic thing that makes having a relationship not only easy, but desirable.” —James, 27


6. “I’m not really a relationship guy, so if there is a girl out there who’s gonna make me have one, she’s gotta be perfect.” —Cory, 25


7. “It’s pretty simple, a serious relationship is just something I’m not looking for right now. Even if I came across a drop dead gorgeous girl with a brilliant personality, the stage I’m at right now, I wouldn’t be able to realize what she’s worth. It really has nothing to do with the girl and everything to do with me.” —Alec, 27


8. “I’ve been crushed by girls I loved one too many times. It’s going to be a long time until I take that risk again.” —Michael, 29


9. “I’ve had my fair share of almost relationships, and I think if you’re both aware of what’s going on there’s absolutely nothing wrong with them. If you make it known that this is something that will never turn into an actual relationship then no harm done, but if you toy with the girl’s emotions and make her feel like maybe you’ll eventually date her, that’s just wrong. I always tell her what I want.” —Garrett, 28


10. “Almost relationships are tricky because they’re more serious than a one night stand, but not serious enough to make you want to be with only one person. The last girl I had an almost relationship with I didn’t fully commit to because there was something missing. I don’t know exactly what, but I feel like I’ll know if she’s a girl I should settle down with.” —Mark, 27


11. “You always hear girls talk about how they don’t want to settle, well that’s exactly why the girls I have almost relationships with are only almosts, because if I were to take it further with them, I would be settling.” —Vince, 25


12. “I want a relationship that I definitely want to be in, if it’s an almost, it’s an uncertainty, it’s a maybe. In my opinion, that’s not a relationship worth starting.” —Steve, 27


13. “It’s about both people, it’s not just what one person wants over the other. She wants him, but he doesn’t want her, or he wants her but she doesn’t want him, it’s about what you both want, and if that doesn’t match up then, move on, and find someone who wants the same things. That’s the whole story of all my almost relationships.” —Ben, 28 TC mark

7 Beautiful Ways To Be Vulnerable And Let Love In

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 12:00 PM PST

Sasha Freemind
Sasha Freemind

1. Express what you feel.

We live in a world where it's terrifying to be open. We're scared to talk to people about what we really feel, yet our relationships depend on whether or not we do. We're terrified to tell someone what is on our mind in a given moment, what we're thinking, or how that person's touch makes our heart leap. But we must. We have to stop putting up barriers between what we're experiencing and what we actually confess to the other person. Who cares if it is scary, nerve-wracking, or crazy? It's exciting. And when you tell someone how you're feeling it opens doors and lets love flood in.

2. Do what feels right in the moment.

Enough with the holding back. Enough with the over-thinking. Enough with the wondering whether or not you should, and just do. Honestly, life's too short to calculate every single thing. Too short to wonder how you should act in a given situation. Too short to stop doing what you want, and later wish you would. Quit living with regrets. If you want to reach for his/her hand? Do it. If you want to kiss him/her? Do it. If you want to pull him/her to you and pick him/her up and spin him/her in a circle in the middle of the street? Do it. The only one stopping you is yourself.

3. Be open about your past.

Vulnerability is hanging your dirty laundry out in the air and hoping the other person will still love you for who you are. But you know what? We all have dirty laundry. And the sooner you can be open about your past, where you've been, what has shaped you, and how you've changed—the sooner you'll be able to have raw, honest, and beautiful relationships. So quit hiding your past and sweeping bits and pieces of yourself under the rug. The right person will love you for who you are, darkness and all.

4. Share something you never thought you would.

The deepest parts of you are the parts that another person wants to see. That person wants to unfold all your layers, watch you come undone in the palm of their hands. That person wants to know you, the real you behind the fa├žade you show the world. That person wants to know your secrets, and share theirs with you. Let them. Let them open you, let them experience you. Share with them the things you cover up, the secrets you never thought you'd let out. That's where true love begins—the moment you quit hiding.

5. Believe what someone tells you.

Vulnerability is trust. Trust, when every situation from your past is screaming at you not to. Trust, when you're terrified. Trust, when you're not sure you should. Trust, when you cannot guarantee that this person will keep your heart safe. You trust, because that's the only way to let someone in. You believe what they say and give them a chance. Otherwise you'll always be looking back in the rear-view mirror wondering what could have been.

6. Listen.

Open your heart and open your ears. Listen to what this person is tell you—their emotions, thoughts, fears, insecurities. Not only is vulnerability sharing slices of you, but it's carefully holding the pieces of another person and learning how to love them.

7. Stop guarding your heart.

You don't have to be so protective. You don't have to hold people at arm's length. You don't have to compare every new relationship to the past. You don't have to expect people to earn your love—that's not how this works. Stop guarding. Be open. Vulnerability is knowing that you may get hurt, knowing that everything could go wrong, knowing that love between two imperfect people will undoubtedly be imperfect, but choosing love just the same.

And that? That's strong, raw, and real. TC mark

The Rules Of Texting (Explained By Guys)

Posted: 14 Jan 2017 11:00 AM PST

I'm Priscilla
I’m Priscilla

As single millennials, the "Should I text him first?" inevitably pops up in my friend group chats from time to time, followed by thorough deliberation. This time, I went straight to the source for the answers to what, if anything, is appealing about "the chase" when it comes to texting, what the game is about, and how to play. Five guys, ages 20 – 30, opened up about what goes through their minds before they hit send.

Our panel of eligible male millennials:
(Names have been changed.)
David, 20
Braden, 20
Cameron, 23
Ben, 27
Nate, 30

1. Are there "rules" to texting?

Let's cut to the chase – pun intended. Four out of five of the guys said yes, there are rules to texting. According to Cameron, 23, the golden rules are to mind your grammar and abide by "three strikes you're out" if he's not responding: "Always use complete sentences and never send more than three unanswered texts."

Nate, 30, says the golden rule is "No emojis if you are over the age of 16."

Ben, 27, thinks it goes beyond whether or not you send those monkey emojis: "I definitely think there are unwritten rules to texting. A lot of these rules are generated by society and pop culture, and dictate how we converse with one another. I think these rules are also reflective of the relationship you have with someone. The frequency and type of text definitely differs between friends, work associates, girlfriends/boyfriends, best friends, crushes, siblings, parents, etc.

Ultimately, I think there is a general set of baseline rules that most people follow – like being polite, funny, respectful – and then the rest just falls into personal expectations."

2. What is appealing about someone being "hard to get"?

There was a clear divide here. Two out of three of the 20 – 23 year olds said there is nothing appealing about someone being "hard to get." David, 20, clarifies, "It makes them seem conceited and uninterested." Nate, 30, weighs in with the younger crowd on this one, stating that "nothing" is appealing about a girl who is "hard to get." He advocates the "straight to the point" approach: "I am always one who is aggressive and goes after what I want. You know pretty quickly if someone is into you or if you are into them. Whether it's via text, at a bar or Steak 'n Shake, "hard to get" is a thing of the past. I have noticed over past 3-4 years even females have been more aggressive in pursuit."

On the other side, Braden, 20, says, "It makes them seem desirable; if lots of people want someone, then that person probably has something good about them."

Ben, 27, sheds more light on the appeal: "[It's] the old adage of nothing easy is worthwhile. I think everyone can agree that the more time and effort you put into someone, the more interested you are. But being hard to get is definitely a game and

I think it totally depends on the type of person you are. Each individual has a different threshold of "hard to get" that they are willing to tolerate. When you're texting someone that you like and they are hard to get, it's nauseating, exciting, and thrilling, waiting for someone to respond – the fact that it's new and unknown is exciting. The anticipation and re-reading of texts can drive you mad but it's that pain and agony that makes it so much better when they respond."

3. How often is too often for a girl to text "just to say hey"?

According to Braden, 20, "more than once a day is too often," while Cameron, 23, says texting "just to say hey" is "always fine." Nate, 30, agrees that the text conversation should be "open-ended to keep the conversation flowing."

Ben, 27, wants a more creative conversation starter. "If you are actively pursuing someone, you better come up with something better than 'hey' or you will lose their interest," he cautions. But don't underestimate the guy's ability to play hard to get: "However, if I know someone is interested in me, and maybe I'm playing hard to get, just saying 'hey' after a lull in conversation can let them know that I'm still interested, but still give me the control."

4. Is it a turnoff if a girl is always the one to text you first?

We have a consensus here – everyone answered no. Nate, 30, explains, "It's 2016; Chivalry isn't dead, but her texting first is kind of a turn-on, actually. It shows interest." Ben agrees, adding that, "It shows that she knows what she wants. If I'm not interested, it's not a turn-off, but it does become annoying if they continually

text you first when you don't show interest."

5. Are there "weekend" texts and "weekday" texts?

No surprises here – Weekday texts are more conversational, and are meant to serve as distractions while at work. They are also sober texts (usually). Weekend texts tend to get more flirtatious, and the senders are more likely to have a drink in the other hand (you don't say).

Ben, 27, cautions the tipsy texters: "Once you start drinking, you start texting less with your brain and more with your emotions, which can lead to a disaster the drunker that you get."

When asked the difference between a "weekday" text and a "weekend" text, Nate, 30, says that there isn't one – "unless it is after midnight and the bars are closing." I feel compelled here to remind everyone of the Jersey Shore wisdom of "Nothing good happens after 2:00 A.M." (unless you're at Steak 'n Shake – and Nate will be there with chivalry and cheese fries).

6. Is there a reason or strategy behind your texting habits?

Maybe the "bad texter" isn't always a myth. Some guys generally don't like texting as a whole. David, 20, dislikes communicating through texts "because of the inability to convey emotions properly through words." Nate, 30, would also opt out: "I am more of a phone caller, [it] shows more intimacy."

Unfortunately, the fear that the guy's inbox is full of conversations with other girls may be a valid concern. That is, at least, if you're talking to Braden, 20: "I treat it like a game where I try to talk to as many people as possible at the same time."

Ben, 27, is our breath of fresh air. "I'm not one for games," he says, "and the older I get, the less and less I play them. But I do think it is important to not come off as desperate or clingy when first meeting someone, because you don't want to spook them." When can you expect a non-strategized text from him? "After 2 – 3 dates, I usually stop worrying about the time or frequency of my texts as strategic, because I feel that I have a read on them and whether or not we like each other."

7. What is your favorite text to get from a girl?

I'll let the guys speak for themselves here.

David: I dislike all texts equally.

Braden: hey (:

Nate: "pizza and hockey game?"

Ben: I think that depends on the girl; for example, I loved getting "hey there stranger" from my first serious girlfriend who I took to prom. The words didn't necessarily mean anything, but between us it was an inside joke or something we always said to each other. So I think the best/favorite text to get from a girl is where they reference an inside joke; it shows they care without actually saying the words, and it's unique to your relationship.

Cameron: Anything that means they were thinking of me (e.g. miss you/ something reminded them of me) and compliments.

8. When was the last time you "ghosted" a girl and why?

For questioning readers, I'll save you the Google search: "Ghosting" is when someone you're "dating" or "talking to" or "seeing" (#Dating in 2016 problems) ends the "relationship" by ending all communication without explanation or warning.

Interestingly, the 20 – 23 year olds weren't as familiar with the term. David, however, appears well-versed in it. When asked when the last time he "ghosted" a girl was, he replied, "This week, I didn’t want to talk to her." Fair enough.

However, sometimes ghosting is the simple solution to an online dating match gone bad. Ben, 27, last ghosted a girl after a first [Tinder] date. "She had a lot of baggage," he explains, "and brought up that she recently broke up with a boyfriend she had been dating for several years… She was not ready to date – and that was what I was looking for."

Nate last ghosted a girl last year: "She said she was a Cubs fan."

9. Have you ever waited a day or longer to respond to a text? If yes, why?

Most of the panelists said yes, by accident – or yes, to not come off as eager. Nate, however, knows better than to wait too long to reply to your text: "You won't find yourself anywhere but the doghouse if you don't text back within a few hours."

The takeaway? To summarize the findings, here is the most important graph. Send the text. Keep it thoughtful – If you were thinking about him, let him know. Mind your autocorrect, don't spam him, and be your witty self – even if that calls for emojis (personal opinion). Happy texting.TC mark