Peyton Stotelmyre / Daily Nexus

My roommate watches way too much porn very loudly. How do I get him to stop?

Welp… I’m going to have to say there is no way to stop your roommate from watching copious amounts of porn; however, the noise pollution is definitely something that is more up for discussion. If by some miniscule chance your roommate is living in a state of oblivion and consequently unaware of the fact that you know he’s watching porn, then I would say you should let him know you are VERY aware of that fact. The oblivious roommate, while sometimes annoying, will often change their behavior once they’re told their actions are disturbing the peace of others, within a reasonable amount that is.

If, however, your roommate is shamelessly aware of the fact that all of Isla Vista knows he’s spanking the monkey — *insert favorite masturbation euphemism* — then you’ll probably have to address this issue from the position of a roommate and not a friend (assuming you two are friends). While I am one to support most (nearly all) expressions of physical exploration and desire, and I think it’s important to respect the expressions of others, the shared space must be respected first. Whether he masturbates once a day or his hand never leaves his pants, if he’s making a noticeable amount of noise, you can tell him that you find it bothersome. If a roommate were playing music too loudly, most people wouldn’t hesitate to ask them to turn it down. While this situation is slightly more sensitive, I would venture to say your roommate may understand how you could be uncomfortable. The bottom line is that you guys should set boundaries and expectations, whether that is him reducing his noise level or even you leaving your schedule so he knows when he can be loud. At the very least, he owes you some high-quality ear plugs.

How do I come out as bisexual?

I have to preface this answer, like many others, with transparency about my identity and experiences. As a cis-gendered, heterosexual female the scope of my knowledge is limited to my observations, interactions, and what I have read. That being said, there are still many facets of sexuality that I have yet to even begin thinking about let alone try to understand, but I hope that in questioning my own perceptions and learning about others’ experiences I can find some ground of understanding and explanation.

Though in hindsight it seems so apparent, it wasn’t until it was pointed out to me that I understood there is not a *right* way to come out. The subjectivity of the answers to questions I had asked myself in thinking about sexuality necessitates a solution that could not possibly be singular. For me, this begs the question of where validity and acceptance of different sexualities lies in our community as well as in other aspects of your life.

The world has critiqued us endlessly as cultures within communities perpetuate both overt and more subtle forms of prejudice, and each identity has faced the consequences. The denial and erasure of bisexuality has in many ways affected individuals’ willingness to come out. Whether or not your family, friends, and peers are accepting, questioning and denial are often times at the forefront of discussion: “Are you sure you’re not just confused?,” “You’re a girl dating a man but you identify as bi? Does that identity even affect you?”

Remember you are coming out for you and nobody else. You know that your sexuality is valid, and your feelings are real. There will be people that won’t support you but find strength and compassion with the ones who do and develop a support system with them. Coming out will be a process and you will probably find yourself coming out several times because your sexuality isn’t determined by the gender of your partner. In talking with your partners, it is always important to keep open lines of communication. Eventually, you may become more and more familiar with how certain reactions make you feel and it is important to discuss and process those feelings in each new relationship because they may vary from person to person. At times this process will wear on you, but always remember you can do this and you are not alone.

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This article has been updated for clarity.

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