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How YOU Can Help Change the Narrative of Pregnancy Loss

July 29th, 2014

Anyone who has experienced pregnancy loss, whether a miscarriage or stillbirth, knows that this subject makes people uncomfortable. Even close friends and family members often find themselves unsure how to react to this kind of grief and loss. It turns out that the same goes for a movie about this subject: Minnie Driver was recently nominated for a Best Actress Emmy for Return to Zero, a film about a couple whose first child dies in utero just days prior to his birth, and she said this about their struggle to get the movie out there: “This is a special one… We made this film for $800,000. We ran out of money. We couldn’t finish it. Families who had lost children contributed to our Kickstarter fund so we could finish this film. And when we showed it to distributors in town no one would touch it. They did not now how to market it. Then Lifetime stepped in.”

The film does much to address the discomfort surrounding pregnancy loss, but the filmmakers wanted to do more, which is why they partnered with our friend Tara Shafer’s awesome website Reconceiving Loss to build the Return to Zero Project/Reconceiving Loss, a digital archive and public project to document pregnancy and infant loss from miscarriage through to neonatal death.

In the United States alone, one in four pregnancies ends in miscarriage, and every year an additional fifty thousand babies are stillborn or die within thirty days of their birth. This issue impacts millions of people each year, and still the topic remains a social taboo.

Assuming there are no Emmy-winning pregnancy loss roles in your near future, here’s something else you can do to help the cause: Reconceiving Loss launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds to build this archive of stories and healing narratives. Award-winning novelist Edie Meidav, author of Lola, California, says: “After the trauma of loss, many people start to feel they live a story unscripted by them. And since we walk around always carrying great secret possibility — the ability to name elements of what we would otherwise call, merely, pain, shelving it away in the pain drawer — we all have a great power. Tell what you know (and also what you don’t know) about what you have suffered, and both a writer and reader find a sense of choice in what otherwise would seem to strip a person of that most basic dignity, that of telling one’s own story.”

Somehow Edie (another pal of ours) always manages to find the most eloquent, intelligent, sensitive way to say what we didn’t know we’d been thinking all along!

So, you can give ten bucks to the cause — and, even more importantly, you can share your own stories of loss, from miscarriage through to neonatal death.

If you donate at any level to the Indiegogo campaign, you will be listed as a permanent Charter Archive Underwriter. The campaign closes August 17th — current supporters include the STILL Project and the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth. As New Yorker contributor Daniel Raeburn says of the Return To Zero Project/Reconceiving Loss: “Like therapy, writing is narrative. It’s taking the raw, senseless material of this world and shaping it into something that’s not so senseless, into something we can live with. A story. And after the death of a child, that’s what we need: a story we can live with.”

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Your Call: Can I Tell My Married Boyfriend’s Wife About Us?

July 28th, 2014

We get a lot of advice questions coming in at EMandLO.com, but sadly, we just can’t answer them all. Which is why, once a week, we turn to you to decide how best to advise a reader. Make your call on the letter below by leaving your advice in the comments section. 

Submit Your Own Question to EMandLO.comTry Our New
*PRIVATE* Advice Service!

 

Dear Em & Lo,

I have been having an affair with my supervisor for the past two years. Yes, he is married, but he made promises to me to leave her. She suspected us but he denied it, but when she tried to overdose on pills he called it off with me. He tells me he and his wife are over, too, but I don’t know if that’s true. I know we had a special love, and he is just calling it off out of guilt. Do I tell her?

– Cheatin’ (at) Hearts

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Your Weekly Stars: 07-28-14

July 28th, 2014

grandcentral_ceiling_421photo by Simply Schmoopie

aries (Mar. 21st-Apr. 20th)
Danger ahead. Proceed with caution. Go slow. Watch for sharp turns in the road. Get AAA for your genitals.

taurus (Apr. 21st-May 20th)
Taking risks is only admirable when the results are positive. Wow, it’s really brave to jump out of a plane so you can tell all your friends what it feels like to soar with the birds; it’s utterly stupid when the chute doesn’t open. It’s wildly romantic to marry someone you met ten days ago in Vegas; it’s idiotic when they turn out to be emotionally unstable psychos you have to divorce within six months. It’s courageous to quit your high-paying day-job to pursue your dreams and become a professional karaoke artist touring the karaoke contest circuit . . . No, that’s stoopid whether it works out or not. The point is, just like battles, you’ve got to choose your risks carefully too. Especially this week. Otherwise, putting your heart on the line might result in it getting run over.

gemini (May 21st-June 21st)
Love is likely to develop in the strangest ways this week. Kind of like when people used to pick up the wrong roll of film from the photo lab and discover exactly what their next-door neighbor liked to do with his . . . . Except, with love, it’s a nice surprise, and we don’t call it “gross,” we call it “serendipity.”

cancer (June 22nd-July 22nd)
You know how some weeks you feel like you could pull off the Kama Sutra’s “Feeding the Peacock” and “Riding the Elephant” before breakfast? And other weeks you need twenty minutes of pre-sex stretching just to get near the missionary position? Well, this week you’re going to be a veritable vertical 69-ing, reverse-butterfly-kissing sexpert. And that twenty minutes of stretching? An especially good idea.

leo (July 23rd-Aug. 22nd)
At some point this week, you may suddenly find yourself singing, “I can’t fight this feeling anymore. ” We have our fingers crossed for you that this urge strikes you in the shower, but we can’t make any promises. You shouldn’t, though. Fight this feeling, that is. Tell the world (and one person in particular) exactly how you feel — in song and dance, if need be.

virgo (Aug. 23rd-Sept. 22nd)
Practice quid pro quo in the bedroom this week — if you want snuggles, then snuggle first; if you want oral sex, be the first to head south; if you want to splosh, pay for the groceries. Sexual karma is a boomerang.

libra (Sept. 23rd-Oct. 23rd)
We don’t have many golden rules (and we often break them if the stars are insistent enough) but we have yet to meet anyone who was successfully set up on a blind date by a member of their family. Have you? Remember the sweater your aunt gave you on your birthday — you want that person picking out a partner for you? We thought not. A family member may try to coerce you into giving love a chance this week (and no, we don’t mean in any incestuous way, sickos); tell them (very nicely) that you’re all set for now.

scorpio (Oct. 24th-Nov. 22nd)
If we weren’t such generous, kind, selfless people, we’d say, “Stop polluting the dating pool!” Your charm is raising the bar so high the rest of us just can’t compete. Fortunately, it makes us happy when you get laid.

sagittarius (Nov. 23rd-Dec. 21st)
Your heart is a muscle, and for argument’s sake, let’s pretend your genitals are too. If you exercise them properly, they’ll become stronger. And everyone knows exercise is an endorphin inducer, an antidepressant and a sexiness promoter. This week, it’s time to get physical, like in that Olivia Newton John video, sans the leg warmers.

capricorn (Dec. 22nd-Jan. 20th)
Take it easy. The more you push someone into an intimate situation the more he or she will be reluctant, slap you in the face or press charges. Didn’t you ever hear that story when you were a kid about the contest between the Wind and the Sun to see who could get the man’s jacket off, and the Wind was all cocky and macho, boasting about his power and strength like a fraternity date rapist, and the Sun was super laid back with a big smile on his face like he had just smoked a big fatty, and the Wind got all up in the man’s face trying to force it off which only made the man button up his jacket tighter while the Sun just sat back and shined and shined and quickly got the man to happily take his jacket off? If it had been an “adult” book, the Sun could have just kept shining, getting the man so hot and bothered that he had to unbutton his shirt, then pull down his pants, and then, aw yeah, slowly, oh so slowly, take off his tight, white Calvin Kleins to reveal his . . . Anyway, you get the picture.

aquarius (Jan. 21st-Feb. 18th)
Maybe you don’t buy all that stuff about how arm-crossing is a sign of defensiveness, avoiding eye contact is a sign of evasiveness and a slap in the face is a sign of slight perturbance. But you really ought to give lip-licking a try this week. Sensual body language will only work in your favor. So the next time you’re in the presence of someone you fancy, stroke the stem of your wine glass, playfully touch their forearm as you laugh at their jokes, hold that stare a little longer. Just stop short of drooling and sticking your tongue in their ear.

pisces (Feb. 19th-Mar. 20th)
It’s in the bag, baby. Just say the word, and everything your heart desires will be yours. At least, romantically speaking. When it comes to career success, financial stability and spiritual tranquility, you’ll actually have to get off your ass and work for a change.

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6 Kinds of Lube & 6 Reasons to Use Them Every Time

July 25th, 2014


LELO’s Personal Moisturizer (75 ml) 

Lube gets a bad rap, so we’d like to clear its name here once and for all: Store-bought personal lubricant is not a “crutch” for people with faulty machinery. And reaching for the wet stuff doesn’t mean you’re “not into it,” “frigid” or “kinky.” It just means you like to make sex even better:

  1. For women, natural lubrication doesn’t necessarily go hand-in-hand with sexual arousal. You may be ready mentally, but your body could use a little catching up. It can happen any time, but it’ll be more common the older you get.
  2. Smoking, caffeine, booze, weed, stress, certain days in your menstrual cycle, and cold medicine can all dry you up. Lubricants can help combat these Saraha culprits.
  3. Adding extra lubrication means your sensitive parts can take more and more kinds of stimulation without getting over-sensitive.
  4. It helps prevent chaffing and the condom from breaking.
  5. With so many different kinds to choose from, you can find one that’s perfect for you (i.e. you like the consistency, the scent, maybe even the taste).
  6. It just feels good — even better than it does without!

But don’t even thinking about pulling a Marlon Brando and reaching for the butter (not even the olive oil, yuppie). Oils can degrade latex (i.e. break the condom!) and can also encourage vaginal infections. So when you’re a friend in need, manmade lubricant is a friend indeed.

Don’t have any on your nightstand? Here are 6 popular brands to check out:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dream Interpretation: My Wife Got Jealous of Extra-Marital Oral

July 24th, 2014


photo via flickr

Other people’s dreams are never interesting…except when they’re about sex. Each week, our dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg tells one lucky reader what their dirty dream means. Got a dream you want Lauri to analyze? Click here to submit it (18 and older only, please). This week, a reader asks Lauri:

I dreamed I had a threesome with my wife, an ex of mine, and this other woman [ED: So, more of a foursome, then?]. I’m not sure if she was my ex’s friend. It started with oral sex where the unknown woman started, and not too long after my ex started and my wife looked in the corner of her eyes with just a bit of disgust seeing me enjoy it, as she is not that good at oral.

LauriLet’s get the obvious out of the way. Did you have this dream soon after your wife gave you oral in real life, or soon after you perhaps discussed it or thought about it?

If so, then this dream indicates that this is an issue for you and you should take it as a gentle nudge from your subconscious to encourage your wife to explore different techniques that could help improve her skills. If you present it to her in the frame of “exploring” she may look at it as you wanting to be adventurous with her rather than you criticizing her. Em & Lo’s book SEX: How To Do Everything is a pretty thorough guide.

If your wife’s lack of oral prowess has not been top of your mind lately, then this dream may be more about communication. In my research I have found that most any dream that focuses on the mouth in some form or fashion can usually be connected to communication issues.

It seems your intuition is picking up on the fact that your wife has a bit of jealousy right now in real life, hence her giving you the side-eye in the dream. I believe your ex is in this dream as a warning that you don’t want your wife to become an ex either. So I believe this dream is urging you to open up the lines of communication with her and get to the bottom of what may be irking her lately. Open and honest communication is the key to a lasting and healthy relationship.
Visit Lauri’s brand new site, WhatYourDreamMeans.com, for even more dream interpretations! If you want to be able to figure out your own dreams every morning, then check out her latest book, Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life, which will give you the tools you need to become a dream expert, too. Check out all of Lauri’s books here.

 

 

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The 10 Best “Lion Sex” Photos from Getty Images

July 24th, 2014

When you do a search for “sex” on Getty Images, you get a lot of interesting results — so many, in fact, that we were compelled to create a superlative series of Getty “sex” search images. We ran a “Best of Animal Sex” post, but there were so many amazing lion (money) shots, we had to give them their own day in the sun. Enjoy — they’re GRRRRRRRRRREAT!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5 New Routes to Your Orgasm

July 23rd, 2014

photo via Flickr

Most people have that one, fail-safe way that gets them from point A to point O quickly and directly, scenic lookout points be damned! And when you’re busy or tired (read: every minute of every day), it’s easy (and understandable) to resort to that surefire route on the rare occasion you do get around to doing it.  But tonight, whether you’re alone or with a partner, give yourself at least 30 minutes — okay, 20 — to try to have an orgasm in a different way. Because the more ways you can train your body to have an orgasm, the opportunities for pleasure you have at your disposal and the less chance your orgasm has of ever getting old (not that that is a huge risk or anything). Here’s how:

  1. Use a new hand technique: If you always stick with external stimulation with your (or your partner’s) digits, go deep. If you always hit your G-spot, try your PS-spot (which is directly opposite the G-spot in the vaginal canal).
  2. Get in a different position: If the missionary, for example, is the position you always end with during partner sex, then try to avoid it entirely one night (or at least give yourselves a good ten minutes with doggy style, cowgirl, or whatever).
  3. Try a new toy: If you usually like, say, a Magic Wand, why not try something designed to be used internally for a change, like a Rabbit-style vibe.
  4. Just try it without your toy for once: Attempt to recreate the sensation of your vibrator with your hands, your partner’s hands, or even your partner’s mouth. It won’t feel the same, but it won’t necessarily be worse — just different. And variety is the spice of your sex life!

Don’t worry if you haven’t gotten to O-town before time’s up. Remember, the journey is 90% the fun!

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Which Is Tougher: Pussy Or Balls?

July 23rd, 2014

Our hilarious friend and Lo’s old college dorm buddy (that’s not a euphemism) Eric Levy is an up-and-coming stand-up comedian. We’ve never seen him live, but he’s always cracked us up. He recently posted a set from last December on Facebook, so we finally got a chance to check him out: and he’s as funny as ever! We especially liked his bit on pussy vs. balls, and which is the tougher of the two (starts at minute 13:15). Enjoy!:

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An Audience Member at “The Men Tell All” Tells All

July 22nd, 2014

Our friend Laurie Sandell is not only a celebrity interviewer for women’s magazines like In Style, Glamour and Marie Claire, she is also a Bachelor Nation superfan. She started a private Facebook group for her likeminded friends (like us) called “Monday Night You-Know-What Discussion Group.”  She once bagged the White Rhino of Ben’s season of The Bachelor, a random run-in with show-villain and now tell-all author of “I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends,” Courtney Robertson (Laurie was bold enough to ask for a pic together and got one!). Her superfandom reached its zenith last night: she was in the studio audience of “The Men Tell All”! And now she’s here to tell us all about it:

How did you score tickets to “The Men Tell All”?
One of my friends knows one of the show’s producers.  As soon as I found this out, I immediately called in the most important favor I could imagine ever asking of him.

Where were you seated?
In the front row directly behind [host] Chris Harrison and the hot seat. It was just a fluke we got those seats: I brought a friend [another fellow superfan] and we were one of the last people called into the theater. They needed a party of two for the front row and we fit the bill.

What’s the difference between seeing it in person and seeing it on TV?
Surprisingly, it was eeerily similarly because the set was so utterly familiar, like we had teleported through our TV into the studio. Everything looked exactly the same: the lighting, the flowers, the candles, and, of course, the roses.

Are the guys better (or worse) looking in person?
So much better looking in person. We were actually floored by how good-looking they were. They were shorter than we expected, however — at least some of them were. They were all very comfortable and charismatic on stage. Clearly they had been in front of cameras for months. None of them seemed shy or embarrassed to be there.

Were there any surprises with the guys?
I have to admit, I have been a little bit lax in my viewing this season: I have an infant, so I’ve been watching with one eye, so I didn’t know exactly who the guys were. So when they came out, I was like “That guy is cute.” But he turned out to be the potentially racist one, so I quickly changed my crush.

To whom?
Ron was very charming and super cute.

What was Chris Harrison like?
He’s more sarcastic and hilarious than he is on the show. On the show he has to appeal to a mainstream American audience, but in reality he’s very wry and quick-witted, so that surprised me a bit.

And what was Andi like?
Very likable. And so much more beautiful in person — she truly is stunningly gorgoeus, as good-looking as any A-list celelbrity. Articulate and very put together. She came across as genuine.

How long did it take?
Eight hours.

What?!? Really? Start to finish?
Really, eight hours. When we first got there, we were in a holding room while the producers were making sure everyone was there. They gave us sandwiches. Then they ushered us into the studio and we spent the first two hours watching the fantasy suites episode — they tape “The Men Tell All” before the fantasy suites episode airs so we got to see it before anyone else. After that, each segment took a long time to shoot because they film more than they air, and there were breaks between each segment for leg-stretching and bathroom runs.

How were the bathrooms?
Luxury trailers set up like nice hotel restrooms. An entire trailer was one bathroom.

What was the audience like?
I was looking around at my fellow audience members, like, “Who are these people? How did they get here?” There were a lot of jewel-toned tops. It really did look exactly like the audience you see on TV. They’re a combination of people like me who are friends of friends, people who had won charity contests, randos off the street, and people associated with the show. For instance, there was a guy there — and there are hardly any guys in the audience — so I asked him how he got there and he said he provides the limos for the show. But I have to say, everybody in that audience was a superfan — there was not one jaded person in the room. I’ve been in the studio audience of “Dancing with the Stars” — I was there to interview Lisa Vanderpump — and I was seated next to another interviewer who was totally bored. At the “Men Tell All”, everyone — and I mean everyone — was into it, laughing it up.

Did you practice your reaction faces beforehand?
My friend and I were cracking up practicing our faces beforehand, but when the show started, we were so caught up in it, we really were making crazy expressions. Afterwards, we were actually afraid we might look really ugly because we hadn’t practiced looking pretty while looking surprised!

Did they use any of your reaction shots?
Umm, nothing BUT shots of us! We were practically in every frame! [See below, Laurie is the one in blue, with dark brown glossy bangs.] There were no super surprised reaction shots but we did tsk tsk when Chris Harrison talked about Marquel getting kicked off.  At one point, Chris  brought up a rumor that Andi was pregnant, but I misheard and thought she was about to announce that she actually was preggers, so I whipped my head around to my friend and gasped louder than I’ve ever gasped in my life.  Fortunately they didn’t use that.

What was the most surprising thing about the experience?
It was more intimate than I thought it would be. There’s nowhere to hide. You really are a part of the show. And the guys were very close to the audience. They were only a few feet away. They were milling about afterwards and we could have interacted with them, but there were a lot of producers around and I think it would have been unseemly to try to talk to them.

Any other dirt you can give us?
There are a ton of funny things that I’d like to share but they might really break the fourth wall and I had to sign an extremely steep confidentially agreement that no amount of fundraisers would ever help me recoup.

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