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  • How Can I Tell If I Am a Commitment-Phobe?

    To ask Em & Lo your own dating or sex advice question, click here.

    Dear Em and Lo,

    As a guy, I've always felt a little distrustful about my sense of commitment. I know that I can sometimes get freaked out a little too easily over long-term plans, even if just talking about it. Throughout the few romantic entanglements I've been in, I've never had a clear feeling that I could "see a future with them." So, my question is this: if I'm in a pretty solid long-term relationship, should I be worried if I can't "see" being with them for all my life?

    - One Eye on the Door

    Dear O.E.O.T.D.,

    First of all, we love how you put "see a future with them" in quotation marks, as if the very phrase itself is foreign to you. Talk about commitment issues!

    Then again, maybe not. You always hear women talk about guys with "commitment issues," and usually it just means that a particular guy wouldn't commit to them. Not to get all Mars and Venus on you, but we can't tell you how many guys we know who were commitment-phobes until they weren't. In other words, they could never "see" themselves with anyone…until they met The One. And we don't see how that's an "issue."

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  • What You Need to Know About the Stupak Amendment

    There's been a lot of self-congratulatory back-patting around the House's passing of the Health Reform Bill this past Saturday -- but if you ask us, it's come at a huge price. The Democratic Congress pretty much abandoned women's reproductive rights by including the last-minute Stupak-Pitts Amendment to appease some religio-conservative members of Congress, including several male conservative Dems. Don't be fooled: it's not just simply ensuring that there will be no federal funding for abortion care (which was already in the bill) -- it goes much further. According to Reproductive Health Reality Check:

    • It effectively bans coverage for most abortions from all public and private health plans in the Exchange (i.e. the reformed health insurance market).
    • It includes only extremely narrow exceptions (rape, incest) and excludes cases where the health but not the life of the woman is threatened by the pregnancy, where there are severe fetal abnormalities, etc.
    • It allows for a
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  • Your Call: Why Didn't He Invite Her to Thanksgiving?

    The following Thanksgiving dating-etiquette question was written to Em & Lo, but they've decided to put the butterball in your court:

    My boyfriend and I have been seriously dating for a few months now, although over the course of the past eight months we've gone from buddies, to friends with benefits, to best friends with benefits, to head-over-heels in love. Since we're fairly serious about each other, and since I've already met his father, I was really hoping that he'd invite me to go with him to visit his family for Thanksgiving. My own family is 800 miles away so I won't be able to see them this year, and his is only a few hours' drive.

    I don't want to flat-out ask him to take me along, but I'm not sure what to do, and the closer the holiday gets, the more disappointed I feel. I've dropped a few hints -- I'm very sad I'll be without my family for Thanksgiving, I have extra vacation, I wish I were having turkey this year - but he's either oblivious and hasn't thought about

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  • Em & Lo's Wise Guys: Do Men Size Each Other Up in the Locker Room?

    Advice from three of's guy friends. This week they answer the following: Do guys check each other out in the locker room? Or what about at the urinal? Not necessarily in an attraction way, just in an "how do I measure up" kind of way?

    Straight Married Guy (Fred): Nope. There's an unspoken rule, at least among straight guys, that in the men's room you look anywhere but at another man's equipment. The straight male culture is so incredibly homophobic that the mere suggestion of potential homosexuality that comes from looking -- even just for a split second, even accidentally -- is what keeps straight guys eyes averted as if every penis were the Lost Arc. (I wonder what the protocol is for gay guys?) The only other John Thomases hetro men ever see is the elephant timber in porn, which doesn't help at all, so if a guy just has to know how he measures in the real world up he'll probably resort to asking a woman (and we all know how well that works).

    Gay Single

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  • Should I Breakup with My College Boyfriend?

    Dear Em & Lo,

    Some may call us v-card clingers, but my boyfriend and I have been together for three years now. Giving our virginity to each other was not our first first--we were incredibly inexperienced before meeting. Although the relationship began out of lust it has blossomed into much more. He's my best friend, and without him I would be devastated. We currently attend the same college, and I sometimes feel as if my potential (sexual, personal, academic) can sometimes be limited by our relationship. I have passed on opportunities to study abroad, to fully explore my sexuality in my prime, and to make male friends. I am the type of person who is tortured by the "what-ifs." I just want to know if there are any solutions where I can have the best of both worlds--a loving relationship with my best friend and the maximization of my potential.

    -- I Want a Pony Too

    Dear IWAPT,

    "V-card clingers" -- that's good! But if you have a loving, satisfying relationship that

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  • Is a Generic Birth Control Pill As Effective As a Brand Name Pill?

    Dr. Kate is an OB/GYN at one of the largest teaching hospitals in New York City and she answers your medical questions on once a week. To ask her your own question, click here.

    Dear Dr. Kate,

    A few months ago, I read (on a reputable website) that generic birth control pills can sometimes not be as effective as their name brand counterparts because they do not always contain the same amount or combination of hormones. I am a poor college student, so $5 for pills each month sounds way better than $30, but not if I'm not getting the same amount of protection. I'd gladly pay the extra $25 if it meant significantly higher protection from pregnancy. Is it true that generic pills are less effective? And if they are, are there any generics that are better than others?

    - Scared of Generics

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  • Econ 101 for the Pickup Scene

    Economies of Scale is a "theory of seduction" positing that the more you put yourself out there, the better you'll do. Duh, you say. But, like the greatest economic theories, it gets better as you unpack it.

    Say you spy the woman/man of your dreams sipping a green-tea latte at the Soy Luck Club café: You're almost guaranteed to spaz out when you approach them, unless you're naturally blessed with balls/labes of steel. What hope do you have of maintaining your cool as you try to give your future spouse your phone number, scrawled on an unbleached, recycled napkin?

    What if, instead, you approached every cutie who caught your eye, on a daily basis? The stakes would be much lower, because you couldn't possibly go out with every one of them-so what would you care about a rejection or fifteen? This laissez-faire approach lowers your desperation level, which inversely affects your sex appeal. Now, that's what we call a return on investment.

    Once you've mastered your

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  • Can You Start Over from Scratch with an Ex?

    We feel just awful that we at can't answer every single advice question we get, but we figure that any answer is better than no answer at all. Which is why we decided to let you guys advise one of our readers. Share your advice in the comments section below:

    Dear Em & Lo,

    I broke up with my boyfriend a few months ago, due to some problems with the relationship and some awful things that were going on in my personal life - it was just too much stress. I still have feelings for my ex, however, and recently we started talking and he wants to get back together. However, I just don't feel ready to jump back in to a full fledged relationship. What I'm wondering is, can we date causally for a while first? I don't want to just jump right back in because I feel like we'll gloss over the whole getting-to-know-you part that we initially missed. We never had a casual dating period where we were seeing each other as well as other people, and though I don't have any other

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  • Em & Lo's Wise Guys: What's the Deal with Manscaping?

    Advice from three of's guy friends. This week they answer the following: "What's up with manscaping? We're talking both genitals and chests." To ask the guys your own question, click here.

    Straight Single Guy (L.A. Chris): I think it's great that men have taken an interest in personal grooming. Where's the downside of shearing a chest rug or bisecting a unibrow? And it's every man's secret that shaving your pubes makes you look bigger. Of course, like anything, preening can be taken to comical extremes (think tweezed eyebrows, hair stencils, and fake orange tans). But if you look at advertising and celebrities, male models are intricately manscaped, so that's where a lot of it comes from. Ultimately I think it's a fad: in another 10 years, bushy pubes, woolly chest hair, and thick mustaches will be all the rage.

    Gay Engaged Guy (Joel Derfner, author of Swish): I don't know, but it doesn't matter, because manscaping is, for all intents and purposes, dead. Gay men are manscaping less and less each year, which means that in a few years straight men are going to be manscaping less and less each year, and then our national nightmare will be over.

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  • Poll: Are Tween Girls' Costumes Too Sexy?

    Do you think Little Red Riding Hood and kitty-cat costumes should not have daring necklines, especially when the wearers don't even have cleavage to show off yet?

    Or are plenty kids wearing wholesome costumes and the problem really lies with our adult culture's obsession with sex (since it's the media that overblows this stuff)?

    Or are these kids, who are in the throes of puberty, just growing up faster these days? In other words, if a kid is already having sex at 14, is it then natural for them to dress like someone who's having sex?

    Looking forward to your comments below, or join the debate already in progress here at

    ***CALLING ALL TWILIGHT OBSESSED MOMS: If you or someone you know has read all four books, is anxiously awaiting New Moon's theatrical release, or has a picture of Robert Pattinson on her fridge, please contact EM & LO via this form -- we'd love to interview you!***

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