Author Archives: SuzyKnew!

About SuzyKnew!

SuzyKnew! is dedicated to improving the sexual and reproductive health and sexual pleasure of women of color.

Do I Need A Mercedes Man or Will a Honda One Do?

In the States, most people buy their own car. In my case, my father gives me his old cars once they are really old and and he is ready to buy a new one. In the past, I inherited old Hondas. Now that my father is older and has more money he drives Mercedes, and I recently inherited my first, old Mercedes.

Today, I got the car serviced for the first time at a Mercedes dealership. It was quite an eye-opening experience. I learned that going to a Mercedes dealership is very different than going to a Honda one. For starters, just stepping into a Mercedes dealership costs you $130. This is before the service people even know what is wrong with your car.

At a Honda dealership, for $40 you can get your oil changed and an assessment of any repairs needed. Plus, they’ll wash your car! At the Mercedes dealership, you’re surrounded by wealth and while the service people are pleasant you feel like you have to please them and prove that you belong and are worthy enough to drive a Mercedes. At Honda dealerships, my experience has been that all the male service reps run around trying to please you and show women what gentlemen they are. The service guys are generally middle-aged and not much to look and possibly not much to take home either. But, you walk away with your transmission fixed (wink, wink) and feeling like the belle of the ball. The customers are regular people off the streets while the women at Mercedes all wore diamonds on their fingers and around their necks and the gentlemen were either elderly retired businessmen or businessmen in their prime hammering out deals over their cell phones while waiting for their car to be serviced.

This experience got me quickly thinking about what type of man do I truly need. I always thought I would be with someone successful and financially sound. Like a Mercedes Man. Someone I could build a super, fantastic life with. But, does that come at a cost? Will I be expected to step up the glam and spend tons more on clothing, getting my hair done and make-up? Will his friends and family look me over, seeing if I belong or have the right financial standing or professional achievements to be with their relative?

And what about that Honda Man? Solid, dependable, ready to go. But, not necessarily taking you where your dreams are going. If I went for the Honda man, would I be selling myself short in the long run just to be sure that I make it to the next step in my life but knowing that I probably won’t have a shot at my dreams?

To be honest. I’m still thinking about it. But, I do know that I want a “Mercedes” love with a dependable man…

US Health Plans Must Cover Contraceptives

contraceptives

contraceptives

Ladies, you all know Viagra has long been covered by health care insurance plans in the US.  That hasn’t been true for contraceptives. Well, finally, we ladies have our day.  Called the Affordable Care Act, all new health insurance plans must cover women’s preventive services such as well-woman visits, breastfeeding support, domestic violence screening, and contraception without charging a co-payment, co-insurance, or a deductible. Take a look at the press release from the US Dept of Health and Human Services, which came out August 1, 2011.

On Rihanna’s “Man Down”

Rihanna’s “Man Down” released in late June as gotten a lot of criticism for being too violent. In some places, the song has been banned. But, Ladies, we all know these things happen. And, we’re all the better for it by putting it out there, talking about it, and processing it. So we can do the right thing, if it ever happens to us. In the song, Rihanna admits her guilt and knows shooting a man down was wrong.  Singing in her signature  Barbadian lilt, filled with so much emotion, and with a haunting Reggae tune in the background, Rihanna expresses her horror and surprise when she finds herself unexpectedly faced with such a complex situation. What seems like blossoming love ends in a death. Yet, it is refreshing and inspiring to see such a strong statement against rape staged in the background of hip hop culture which can glorify agression against women. Ladies, open yourselves up to the potential of love, but be ready and confident to say “no” to a man who goes too far. No man has such a “right.” But, just don’t do anything to get yourself behind bars! Mr. Right is out there, and you have to be free to get him!

The American Duggar Family and Contraception

In the US, there is a family named the Duggars who have 19 children. While in many countries, one woman having so many children may not be as rare as it is in the US, the size of this family captures a lot of attention in the US. It allows them to promote their stand against contraception, linking it to their religious beliefs. The Duggars have their own TV show swarming with fans, especially Christian conservatives. However, they get receive a lot of criticism as well. While the Bible says “be fruitful and multiply,” it also says be good stewards of God’s earth.  It is clear, global resources are diminishing as the population continues to grow. Water shortages and droughts are more frequent. Timber, oil and other natural resources are in short supply. Contraception is an option that allows women and men to be more responsible and loving to your family as well as God’s earth.

Photo courtesy of Christian News

The Gabonese Pilot Keeps Checking In

Yep, it has been since Valentine’s Day since I last saw the Gabonese Pilot. We met, promised to start some romance on the Big V Day, and never saw each other again. But, we are fast friends (maybe more…?) via text.  While we haven’t had a long, intense conversation via phone or text lately, the man keeps checking in.  He’s always checking on skype chat to see if I’m available to text – with or without full clothing…!

Where Were You June 27th?

Where were you June 27th?  If you were in the USA, did you take the opportunity to get tested for HIV/AIDS?  June 27th was the National HIV/AIDS testing day in the USA. One in five Americans is living with HIV without knowing it, and over 40% who have the disease are not diagnosed until they have full-blown AIDS, which can be up to 10 years after being affected. HIV/AIDS can be managed, especially if you are diagnosed early. New clinical evidence shows that starting anti-retorvirals early on can hold off full-fledged AIDS even longer than earlier believed.  Read more here:

Today Is National HIV Testing Day: Have You Ever Gotten the Test?

ASK AN OBGYN: What do I do with my Irregular Periods?

Dear SuzyKnew Obgyn:

Last month, in April, my period was on for four days. On the 14th of May, my period was abnormal and went off on the 20th. A day after, I started getting brownish discharge that lasted three days then it turned into regular bleeding. Now I’ve been bleeding with tiny bloodclots. All this started May 21-28 about a week – and I am still bleeding.

T. Townsend

Dear T. Townsend,

I hope the bleeding subsided. A normal menstrual period lasts from 2 to 7 days. Sometimes bleeding that is not part of the regular cycle might occur. This can include a late period, an early period, or bleeding between periods. It can also appear as particularly heavy bleeding or scanty bleeding. It seems this is what is happening to you.

Irregular periods are one of the most common menstrual complaints around. There are various causes of abnormal bleeding. Stress is a commoncause as well as a change in diet or exercise. Newly starting the pill (it can take a while for your body to adjust to the new levels of hormones delivered by hormonal birth control) or missed pills can cause brown staining to bright red bleeding in the middle of the cycle. Also, irritation of the lining of the uterus by an IUD can cause cramping and bloodclots.

Usually, irregular periods are nothing to worry about and depending on the cause of your irregular periods, there may or may not be much you can do about them. If you have only been experiencing irregular periods for a short time (less than 7 months), it is likely that your periods will become regular again on their own. Hormonal contraceptive or hormonal supplement might help regularize your cycle.

However, on occasion, an irregular period can signal a more serious health condition (sexually transmitted disease, miscarriage and even cancer of the uterus, etc…). Early diagnosis and treatment for the underlying condition will prevent more severe complications. If you experience extreme cramping, heavy period bleeding, dizziness, nausea, and/or fainting, you should visit with your health care provider. Fever and purulent secretions need immediate medical attention.

Ask an Obgyn is not meant as an substitute for provider care, but a way for SuzyKnew readers to learn about what other women are experiencing and to hear a provider’s thinking. Consult your provider for any obgyn problem you may be experiencing.

The Gabonese Pilot Goes Into a Holding Pattern

So, what’s the latest about my Gabonese pilot who promised to fly me all over Africa and Europe?  What’s up with the man who promised me a fabulous Valentine’s Day date and then turned out to be married, yet continued to text me from Libreville, Milan, Paris, and Malabo?

Well… nothing.  I haven’t heard a word.

Not a peep.

I guess after I told him to clean up his skype chatting (he wanted to chat with me sans shorts), he has decided to go into a holding pattern.  Check-in with me next month to see where the situation flies to next.

The Gabonese Pilot Goes Beyond Text…

As you remember, I was getting kinda comfortable with the intermittent and random text messages the Gabonese pilot was sending me. If you read previous posts, you’ll see that this guy – a pilot from Gabon who traveled regularly to Libreville, Beirut, Paris, Rome, and Malabo- had been watching me for a while during his stays at a hotel I was living at long-term for work. Then, he pinned me down on Valentine’s Day for a date (which didn’t happen). Later, I found out he was married and told him I wasn’t interested. But, then we fell into this casual texting relationship.

I liked the light friendship. The male attention. It was harmless. Nice.

Then the other day I saw him come up on Skype on my computer screen:

“Are you there?”

“Yes, I am,” I replied.

But, now that I’m back in my home country, looking at my watch I realized that it was 2:30 am his time.

“It’s 2:30 am. Isn’t it kind of late?” I queried.

“It’s not that late,” he replied.

“Odd,” I thought. My guard was down. I only had innocent thoughts.

Then, he slyly asked, “What are you wearing…?”

Hmm… “What’s that supposed to mean? “ I asked on the defensive. “What kind of question is that?? What are you wearing…?!” I charged.

“A shirt on top,” he responded…”and nothing on the bottom.” Okeydokey… So, that’s the way he plays. This is how he rolls. How did this creep up? Can’t a man and a woman have a playful, platonic relationship without it going “to the other side..???”

“Go back to your wife,” I cried. “That’s what she’s there for! I’m not into any porno texting.” I said. “Uh… at least not with married men,” I was thinking, but left out. Of course, he said I had misunderstood. That he was innocent. Why did I think badly of him… Yada…yada… yada…

I thought we would build a nice friendship. See each other casually between our international trips we had for work… How did I so easily fall into this…?

Seemingly not satisfied with that new bone for me to chew on, what does he do today…? He texts me in French: “Peace. In the Name of Christ.”

ASK JANICE: How Can I Get Some Sizzle Into My Sex Life?

Question:

My man and I have a decent sex life but it lacks sizzle. My man treats me like a porcelain doll … sometimes he’s just too gentle! His gentle manner was what first attracted me to him, and I appreciate that he’s so considerate of me. But every once in a while, I’d like him to just ravage me! How can I add some sizzle to our sex life without insulting my gentle man?

Answer:

Girl, who doesn’t want sizzle? Every now and then it’s nice to be ravaged … to be taken! I’m not talking about rape fantasies here (that’s a topic for another day). I’m talking hot, sweaty, head-banging sex; the kind where you’re too embarrassed to meet his eye after because of all the nasty things you said and did!

We all love to make love. You know that mushy, sweet, staring-into-each-other’s-eyes kind of lovemaking, where sweet nothings are whispered and your souls become one. That’s all well and good. But sometimes (probably more times than we’d care to admit), we all want our hair pulled and our asses slapped as we are thoroughly and (a little) roughly f@#$ed out of our minds.

There’s nothing like it, is there? You scratch your nails down his back and beg him for more. He flips you like a pancake and whispers into your ear all the dirty things he’s going to do to you. You both yell and scream; you let yourselves go as unbridled passion consumes you. And when it’s over, you are a sweaty, panting, hair-all-over-your-head, thoroughly satisfied mess.

I’ve got news for you. Men like and need this, too! I guarantee that your nice, mild-mannered man would love to feel your nails rake down his back as he wildly hammers you. He’s probably just worried that you’ll be turned off by any show of aggression in the bed.

So, here’s what you do: the next time he’s making that nice, sweet love to you, nudge him the dark side with little suggestions like “harder” or “faster” or even “take me”. You’ll find that he’ll be more than willing to comply. Then, as things heat up, continue to encourage him verbally and compliment him on his skills, his anatomy. Be vocal about your pleasure and get him to express his. Get him to talk to you. Ask him if he likes it, how he likes it, and how he wants it.

Not all men are “talkers”, but even a little verbal exchange can change the tone of your lovemaking. And once he knows that you are open to getting a little wilder in bed, he will be bolder with you. You have to let him know that you’re not going to break or be offended by a walk on the wild side. You just need to create a space comfortable enough for both of you to really let go and unleash your inner freaks! Enjoy!