Dear Readers: I'm proud to finally present my long-delayed column devoted to advice for Girls Also Longing and other 15-year-olds. What do the women who read Savage Love know now that they wish they'd known then? You can read all about it below.
But before I open the girl-power spigot, I wanna get something off my chest: Ratzinger? Ratzinger! Jesus fucking Christ--Ratzinger.
OK, on to female empowerment.
Here's a pearl of wisdom I wish someone had shared with me: Just because a guy wants to fuck you doesn't necessarily mean he likes you. Sounds painfully obvious, doesn't it? I was in my 20s before I finally figured it out. --Now I Know
It's amazing how quickly a condom appears when you make it quite clear it ain't going in there without one. --Stand Firm
Your "no death grip" advice for 15-year-old boys is right on, but the same goes for girls. Too much, too hard, too monotonous masturbation is bad, bad, bad. If a girl is fortunate enough to have a vibrator, she should not constantly use it on jackhammer speed in one place. Vibrators and fingers don't feel like tongues, dicks, or other toys. Variety. I can't say it enough. --ES
All girls have to do to get guys is make a half-assed effort to take care of themselves physically, and the pigs will come to slop! --Common Sense
My advice for the 15-year-old girl:
(1) You don't need a guy to have an orgasm. Get a vibrator and use it.
(2) Any sexual encounter should be entered into joyfully and without duress. No coercion.
(3) Do what you love and you will find someone who loves the same thing. Don't look for love, beg for love, or suffer for love. Just live.
(4) If you have to get drunk to have fun, it's not fun.
(5) Giggling and self-conscious simpering do not make people think you are in college. --RockBridge
I wish I'd known when I was 15 that dating older men does not mean you are hot shit. It means you're dating a dude who can't get women his own age, and that those women are avoiding him for good reasons. --Karen L.
The outgoing, macho-acting, good-looking guys you're attracted to will treat you like crap. The quiet, nerdy, smart, bookish guys you're not attracted to will treat you like gold. But you may have to seek and draw them out, as they are usually shy. --CJB
I wish I had known that I was a lesbian when I was 15. I had a lot of sloppy guy kisses and fucks before I realized there was a reason I never enjoyed them. My suggestion to GAL is to not rule out the possibility that she may be gay. Most 15-year-old boys don't know what a clit is anyway. --Amy W.
What do I know now that I wish I'd known then? That guys are easy. Incredibly, excessively, tremendously easy. Don't be coy, don't drop hints--they can barely handle that when they're adults, let alone teenagers. Go up and ask him out--it's as simple as that. Really. --Karen
Masturbate frequently, make out occasionally, read lots of books, and work on being funny, intelligent, and confident. Concentrating on being a well-rounded girl who knows where she's going and what she wants out of life, GAL, will ensure that as a grown woman you have your pick of the highest-quality men. Also, keep in mind that nice nerdy boys are usually far better lovers than jocks or bad-boy types. --Barbara
I'm 23, and I wish I'd known this simple truth eight years ago: sometimes men lie. Even if you two are in love, even if he truly understands you, even if you tell him all your secrets, sometimes he'll lie. So do sensible things, like putting off sex for a while or using protection if you do have sex. Also, GAL, if you don't understand him it's probably not a good sign, even if it makes him seem mysterious and interesting. At least consider that instead of interesting he's just confused or messed up. --A Bit Older
I was pregnant when I was 15. It sucked, so my best advice to a young woman would be: masturbate often. No one tells teenage girls that they have the ability to get themselves off better than any boy could. Learn about your body, find your clitoris, and experiment! I think a lot of teenage-girl angst could be bypassed if all parents bought their daughters a vibrator for their 13th birthday. I know my girl is getting one. --The Baroness
Don't be a cock tease. It's not funny to do this to people you are with--it's mean. Stop any intimate experience that is moving toward sex if you have no intention of having sex. --Cassandra
I'm a 21-year-old female, and I wanted to write in to give advice to younger girls. When I was 15 I never had problems getting guys, but I had problems keeping them, and I was clueless. When I look back I realize my problem was this: I was crazy. Don't make my mistake, girls. Don't be crazy. Don't get completely hung up on someone just because you think you're "in love." When you're that young and that hormonal, everything seems like love--at least to girls. I would have had a much better time if I hadn't been so clingy and moony. --Older and Wiser
Forget about how a teenage girl can get boys. How about some advice for a 15-year-old girl on getting girls? It's difficult to even meet lesbians or bisexuals at this age, let alone start a relationship. If you have any advice I would be ever so grateful. --Lonely Young Lesbian
After running columns packed with advice for straight 15-year-old boys and girls, how can I say no to dedicating a couple of columns to 15-year-old queers? Adult gays and lesbians: What do you know now that you wish you had known at 15? Send it to me and I'll pass it along.
Finally, there's tons more advice for 15-year-old girls at www.thestranger.com/specials/savage/15.html.