Belle Femme

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Everything posted by Belle Femme

  1. Man caves

    The garage is sort of Beau's man cave, and my home office is sort of my woman cave. In the future, it would all come down to space. Would there be enough extra space in our home for us each to have dedicated rooms for fun? After all, both our garage and my home office are functional and necessary for our daily lives. Would a future house have enough rooms to meet all necessary functions, and still have two bonus rooms? Honestly, I don't need my own woman cave just for me. Our dream home includes my own home office that is beautiful and functional plus a library. The library will be for all of our books, not just mine. Our dream home includes a nice master bathroom with a big bathtub (which we actually already have in our townhouse), which would be for both of us. I love a good solo bubble bath while Beau is traveling, but baths are more fun together. I'm totally fine with him having his own man cave as long as he doesn't take shared technology (TV, DVD player, etc.) away from shared space (living room, bedroom, etc.) to outfit his man cave.
  2. Guys were always shocked after making out with me that I was a virgin and wouldn't sleep with them. I was occasionally shocked after kissing guys who I knew weren't virgins that they were bad kissers. The first guy I kissed was surprised he was my first kiss. You really can't tell by how someone kisses if they're a virgin or not.
  3. I mean, waiters/virgins don't have huge neon signs across our chests indicating our sexual status or preferences. So if you know a woman is waiting, that means you probably already know her, and should be able to talk with her comfortably. In general, confidence and friendliness, plus the ability to read the situation, are all you need to approach anyone, male, female, romantic partner, or otherwise.
  4. If one more person writes some awful generalizing article about how "your grandparents are still together," I might just burst into flames. My grandfather had multiple affairs while married to my grandmother. He only divorced my grandmother when he knocked up his mistress (who was just a few years older than his oldest daughter). And it's not like I have young grandparents or something. If they were both still alive today, they'd be in their 90s. Yeah, his divorce was unusual, but let's stop pretending like older generations never cheated on their spouses. My parents were both left by their first spouses. My mom came home from work one day to discover that her husband of five years had cleaned out all of his clothes. He literally walked out on her. My dad's first wife of ten years just asked for a divorce one day. I don't know any other details, because understandably neither of my parents like to talk about it. But my parents just celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary to each other, so, you know, I think they're pretty good at this whole marriage thing. All his social media points? Social media is a tool. It's up to people how we use it. Do I put tons of stuff on the Internet? Yeah, I do. And it's launched my writing career. Being public on the Internet is part of the game. But anything about Beau or our relationship that I put online is approved by him first. I would never sacrifice my marriage for my career. Finally, after being in both a long-distance relationship early on, and recently a long-distance marriage for five weeks, I'm infinitely grateful to technology. It has only helped my relationship. I love that Beau and I can gchat during the work day. I love that we could skype while we were long-distance. We can talk all day long via text and IM and still have stuff to discuss in person at home.
  5. I find it interesting/disheartening that some people try to claim someone else isn't really of their religion because of reasons. Within Christianity, there are Catholics, Orthodox believers, Presbyterians, Baptists, non-denominational believers, Mormons, and hundreds of other designations, each with a specific, slightly different theology. I don't know much about other religions, and I'm interested to learn more! How would you describe the most important aspect of your religion? For example, as a Christian, my most important beliefs are: 1) God is our Creator 2) Jesus is our Savior Is there more than that? Of course, but those are the absolute core tenets of my faith. What are yours?
  6. Honestly, for waiters, I don't know why you would want the honeymoon to be a big vacation. Having lived in France, and having done the intense tourist days when family/friends visited me, making the most of an expensive European vacation is amazing but exhausting. There's no way Beau and I would have had time for lots of HONEYMOON SEX if I had dragged him off to Paris. (We're going next year!) My honeymoon requirements were a king size bed for the honeymoon sex and a body of water to read/nap by while recovering between rounds of honeymoon sex. We ended spending a week in Puerto Rico, and it was honestly the best choice for what we wanted. There's just enough to do that you can take day trips and be adventurous, but not so much to do that you feel guilty spending half the day in bed together.
  7. In no particular order: 1) Small, medium, and large mean different things to different people. Same with expensive/moderate/inexpensive. People will have totally different expectations on those words depending on their families, their cultural background, their financial background, their geographic location, etc. I mean, for example, good luck having an inexpensive wedding in NYC. And if you're close to aunts, uncles, and cousins in a large family, then a small wedding might still be 100+ people. 2) If you're not paying for your wedding, you and your spouse don't have final say over it. So compromising with your spouse will probably be less important than compromising with the parents. My parents invited tons of people who were not important to me to the wedding reception in my hometown... But they paid for that reception. 3) We had a small wedding (parents and siblings only) followed by three wedding receptions. Unusual, yes, but it worked for us. 4) I can't help but return to finances. If you've never planned a big event before, you probably don't have a good idea of how much money it costs to pay for such an event. Beau and I are both pretty frugal, but his initial budget for our wedding and receptions was completely unrealistic. He just didn't know any better. I definitely don't think you should go into debt for your wedding, but if you DO have the money, I would do some initial research into venues and catering in the city where you want to get married before setting a budget. Because the quickest way to save money is just to invite less people, and for some couples, their family size makes that difficult.
  8. Chivalry. Dead or Dormant?

    I'm not interested in chivalry making a comeback, especially at the expense of equality. I'd rather encourage men AND women to treat all people with politeness and courtesy. I had lunch with my brother yesterday, who just got back from Europe. He told me about visiting some female friends in Germany who treated him to a night out and about a female friend in England who insisted on hosting him and cooking for them. We discussed how exciting it is to play host in your home country to an international friend come to visit and what hospitality looks like in that situation. How wonderful it is to live in a time when men and women can extend courtesy to each other, when the idea of who pays for something is based more on financial ability and not on gender.
  9. Male Doctors....

    I've never noticed a difference between male and female doctors. My regular gastroenterologists have all been male, although occasionally a woman filled in if I needed a last-minute appointment. The women were always just as great with me as the men, although obviously as subs I didn't know them as well. My last two GPs were both women, and I LOVED them. Beau and I recently moved, so I need to find a new GP. I already have a new (male) gastroenterologist because I've been sick. It's true that the only doctor I had who I didn't like was female, but she was also the only doctor I had who was a New Yorker. Her brashness was characteristic of some other New Yorkers I met, so I associate that with geographical differences, not gender.
  10. We got married in the morning, which was partly so we would have plenty of energy for afternoon sex. To describe my wedding AFTERNOON: It was a beautiful physical moment that symbolized both our marital vows and the culmination of the physical intimacy we had slowly explored prior to our wedding. Too bad I became extremely sick within an hour or two of that glorious coitus.
  11. My libido has increased since I first started dating my husband. This is not VDA, so I will try to word this carefully. Prior to meeting Beau, I could go months without strong sexual urges. Then I might have a period of time when I masturbated 1-2 times a week, or just 1-2 times a month. There was no consistency to my libido, nor were there any clear instigators for change. Now, except for occasions when I very sick or tired (I have Crohn's so this is quite often), I want to have sex 2-3 times a week. I will add that libido doesn't always match sex frequency. Partnered sex takes considerable time and energy, which is not necessarily true for solo sex.
  12. I want one of each. My husband and I have discussed the possibility of having one biological child and then adopting a second child. If there are fertility issues we'll just adopt. I would love to have a biological child that comes from both of us, but if there's a sperm/egg issue, I don't want to go through all the time and expense to have a biological child from just one of us. There are children in the world who need homes, so we could do that. Or we might just foster several children. I know foster kids also desperately need good foster parents. That could or could not lead to adoption, depending on why the kids are in foster care. Those are all just decisions that we will make when faced with the option. I would be disappointed if we had fertility issues, and I would probably grieve for awhile, but then I'd move on. It's not something I would dwell over, nor would I be upset with Beau if the fertility problem were on his end. That's something completely out of your control, and I can't imagine being so callous as to blame your spouse for that. Vince, spend enough time browsing the relationships subreddit, and you'll discover the shockingly high number of people who don't discuss enough major issues prior to marriage. For example, many couples don't go beyond "kids or no kids" when discussing marriage. On that question alone, a couple should be in agreement on: how many kids? when to start trying for kids? how far apart in age is ideal? will both parents take parental leave? for how long? will you prioritize saving so that, if necessary, both parents can take unpaid leave? will one parent stay home? which parent? for how many years? if not, daycare/nanny/grandparents? philosophy on naming kids (take turns picking? family names? veto power?) what form of birth control to plan pregnancies? what to do with an unplanned pregnancy? Other things to discuss, but not necessarily decide right away, include: preferred form of schooling (public/private/religious/home), vaccinations for kids, balancing time with in-laws after kids are born, overall parenting philosophies (like thoughts on chores, allowance, family vacations, discipline, etc.). These need to be discussed in case each partner has very strong and radically opposing beliefs. If the opinions aren't as strong, they can obviously be decided as they come up, based on more present circumstances. For example, I wouldn't have married someone who insisted I stay at home and homeschool our kids. But Beau and I have discussed different schooling ideas for whenever we have kids, based on what our options might be at that time. You can compromise on a lot in a relationship, but when you compromise on anything big involving kids, you're potentially putting them at risk.
  13. Do you prefer a "manly" man or a "sensitive" man?

    If only those two men were available, I'd find myself a nice lady instead.
  14. My engagement ring and wedding band don't go together, which is intentional. We picked out a relatively inexpensive wedding band so that I could wear it while traveling or doing something that might damage the stones on my engagement ring. On the off chance it was lost or damaged, it's much easier to replace. The vast majority of the time, I just wear my engagement ring.
  15. Husbands Forgetting Events

    Beau takes awhile to learn important dates, but he finally knows my birthday. We engraved our wedding date in our wedding bands, so we can both remember that easily. We share our Google calendars with each other to keep on top of any important events.
  16. Fun thread... No seriousness intended. :)

    Light red represents joy, sexuality, passion, sensitivity, and love. As long as no one except my husband knew it stood for sexuality and passion too, just the joy, sensitivity, and love, I'd totally go for that.
  17. White wedding dresses on non-virgins

    I definitely researched the history of white wedding dresses for my blog post last year, The Demi-Vièrge Wore White. My sources are linked there, but this is a quote from one of them.
  18. Sibling Getting Married

    My twin brother and I both got married last year! My wedding was in March, and his was in October. I've known his wife since high school, but I didn't meet her family until the wedding. I met Beau's entire family at Thanksgiving (when we'd been exclusive about a month). My parents and brothers met Beau a few weeks later. Both sets of parents met about a month before our formal engagement, but our families didn't meet each other until the wedding. My twin brother's wedding was still a little awkward for me for other reasons. I was the only sibling not in the wedding party. I understood it, b/c my SIL has been a bridesmaid in more weddings than the number of friends she had in her bridal party, so it was hard enough for her to choose bridesmaids, but it still sucked to see my other brother, her brother, and her sister up there. My evil heinous cousin wasn't supposed to be there, but she was. Evil heinous cousin can apparently say incredibly insulting things about my marriage and my desperate need to have a government-approved relationship, but she can still cheerfully attend my twin brother's wedding. Finally, my aunts and uncles who couldn't even bother to send me a card congratulating me on my wedding were all able to attend his. So, yeah, the wedding was beautiful, and I cried, and I was ridiculously happy, but the long weekend definitely included some awkwardness.
  19. If you are dealing with an indecisive person or people, giving them a few options and letting them choose from those is a good course of action. (When discussing unimportant stuff, like food or a fun activity or time to meet up, etc.) If he/they still can't decide, give your preference, and see if there's an agreement. My husband and I make big decisions together. For example, he just started a new job this week that requires relocation. He only considered jobs in geographic locations that I had pre-approved. I'm visiting him this weekend, since I haven't moved yet, and we're looking at apartments together. We will only get one that we both like. Certainly, we'll probably have to make some compromises, but both of us have a few non-negotiables. I want two bathrooms and a washer/dryer connection. He wants a commute to work of 20 minutes or less. We might have to compromise on other things we'd both like, like a pool or a fireplace or the layout or even the rent, but any apartment will meet those requirements. For small decisions, sometimes we take turns deciding, and sometimes we decide together. Luckily we like a lot of the same foods and restaurants, so picking out food is easy for us. If you really like taking charge and making decisions, what's most important to learn is when to compromise and when NOT to compromise. Like this is an unimportant example, but my husband is a picky eater. If I want sushi or Indian or something a little more exotic, I make plans to get that with friends or by myself. I would never drag him to a restaurant that only served food he doesn't like. BUT sometimes I watch stupid movies that he loves, and sometimes he watches stupid movies that I love. Those are little sacrifices we're each willing to make. Also, sometimes you have to treat indecisive people like children. Give them a limited set of choices and have them pick from that. I agree with Stacie that a high degree of indecisiveness is a sign of immaturity. I'm a grown-ass woman. I know exactly what I want, and I know exactly what I will and will not compromise on.
  20. What is Maturity

    Maturity is definitely subjective. My husband (28) and I (27) both love to act like kids and do all the hands-on stuff at museums and giggle over fart jokes and go to the zoo and generally just be very silly. But we both work full-time, we both prioritize a healthy savings account, we are both planning for retirement, he never gets drunk and I only get drunk because I'm a total lightweight, we have serious conversations about the status of our relationship and our goals for the future... I mean, if you only hang out with me when I'm watching the Disney Channel, you'd probably think I'm immature. But if you talk to me about finances or politics or travel or something, I sound my age (or older). Also, keep in mind that while it's great to be mature for your age, sometimes where you are in life is the biggest issue with incompatibility, regardless of actual maturity. There's a huge difference between someone still in college and someone settled into their career, even if the age difference isn't that much.
  21. Male Logic: If a woman consents to one thing, she consents to all the things! I can completely disregard her choices and mock her silly belief that she has a right to her own body. By your extremely sexist example, since I've given a ton of medical professionals plus my husband access to my naked body, then I can't be upset if anyone tries to see or touch my naked body. The difference between wearing a bikini in PUBLIC and wearing underwear in PRIVATE is consent. I personally don't have a problem with trusted friends seeing me in my underwear (I refer to my bras as bullet-proof vests b/c of how much support and coverage I need), but I would feel violated if someone barged into my bedroom while I was changing.
  22. If anyone wants to donate several hundred dollars to the "Pay for Belle's one-of-kind, custom-designed one-piece bathing suit," then I'd be happy to stop wearing bikinis. Until then, I am an extra-large or extra-extra-large on top and a small or extra-small on bottom. Good luck finding anything that is NOT a bikini that will actually stay on my body. Yeah, that goes for tankinis too. When I lived in France, I sunbathed topless, and no one batted an eye. When Beau and I go to the pool, he doesn't ogle the other women in bikinis. I hang out with my guy friends at the pool or beach in a bikini, and they don't leer at me or make me feel uncomfortable. If you're literally incapable of treating a woman with respect and dignity because she's in a bikini, avoid pools, beaches, and water parks. If the guy you're dating is checking out other women, the problem is him, not the other women. I've blogged extensively on bikinis, so feel free to read my expanded thoughts on the issue. P.S. I'm bisexual, and definitely very visually-stimulated by attractive people, and yet I manage not to view men or women at the beach sexually.* Maybe because I treat all people as human beings and image-bearers of God, worthy of dignity and respect. *Not counting my husband. He's super-sexy even in sweat pants and a t-shirt. Rowr!
  23. Giving to people on the street?

    I rarely directly give money to someone asking for it. I donate to organizations that help the poor, the homeless, teenagers kicked out of their homes, and women/children escaping abusive partners. Those organizations can help those people better than I can. Where I used to live, the state capital, there's a program that helps the homeless. The homeless people in the program are working in the streets, but offering local newspapers in exchange for donations. They are identified by a clear ID badge around their necks. I don't know all the details of the program, but it's a really good one that provides resources to homeless people to improve their situation. Whenever possible, I give money to those people. On occasions, I have given restaurant gift certificates, free food vouchers, and snacks to people on the street, when I ascertained the situation was safe to do so. Like Steadfast, I've had some scary experiences with people on the street when I lived abroad, and I DO prioritize my own safety.
  24. Do you consider yourself high maintenance?

    Color me surprised that in a society that values women based on their looks, some women will then absorb that message, aspire to the societal ideal, and need reassurance that they're attractive enough. Color me even more surprised that when women act as they've been taught, they're still judged and shamed for it. Maybe when children's TV shows and movies stop portraying female characters, even animated ones, in unnecessarily sexual and/or decorative ways, I'll start to judge women who are insecure about their appearance. Until then, it's a symptom of a bigger problem.
  25. Last names?

    I knew it couldn't be just me!