Dating & Gender

SuicideGirls Radio host and sexpert, Darrah de jour, gets personal while sharing the latest news in dating and gender.

Exit a Toxic Friendship in 5 Easy Steps!

Beware energy vampires! We’re onto you!

toxic-friendToxic friends are the worst. They drain you dry, talk endlessly about their drama and always have the most annoying boyfriends. If you’re all but done being a severed ear to a selfish friend, this list is for you! How do you shake these backstabbing creatures from your iPhone contacts list? Here are 5 steps to get to the “delete” button and get rid of a toxic friend!

  1. Decide whether the bad feelings outweigh the good: If they do, be strong in your decision to end the friendship and stick with it.
  2. Take responsibility and be a decent person: Call her up or Sit her down and explain why you are no longer happy in the friendship. *Don’t text her and don’t ignore her. If you prefer to write it out, consider an email, but know that it could be misconstrued and start a bitter back and forth.
  3. Use “I” statements: “I used to love talking with you, but now there’s no give and take.” “I don’t have the space I need to share my feelings because I don’t feel heard by you.” It sounds corny, but it works.
  4. Show Gratitude: Thank her for the good times and the instances she was there for you.
  5. Get closure: Write a goodbye letter (you don’t need to send it to her, but you can). In it, document the good times and your gratitude for the beginning—and the end—of your toxic friendship.


You may feel great after you let go of a toxic friend, or you may feel guilty. This is the time to do some internal work and reach into your spiritual toolkit to find forgiveness. It may take some time. Try not to overthink all of the nasty things your friend did. Instead, work on manifesting a better friendship compass! Write down what you want in a friend, and then make an effort to find them!

~Best of luck on your journey to fabulous, fulfilling friendships!~

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Rules of Engagement

Five ways to make your engagement matter.

You’re not single anymore and you’re not somebody’s girlfriend or boyfriend. You are engaged! It’s an exhilarating feeling. I’ve been engaged now for almost one year. Both my fiancée and I knew we wanted a long engagement. We’ve been together three years total and plan to marry sometime next year. We’re not in a rush to, and in fact, have really enjoyed being engaged! Here are five ways that we’ve made our engagement a special time—distinct from anything else.

  1. Your engagement is not a test-run for marriage. It’s a special time to celebrate the new commitment you and your partner have made to each other. Whether short or long, it is it’s own thing. Treat it as a gift and an opportunity to deepen your commitment and plan your wedding.

  2. Remember that it’s not about the ring; it’s about the person.

  3. Enjoy the many opportunities you’ll be presented with to say “fiancée” and don’t rush into wanting to be a bride or groom. You will (hopefully) have your whole life to be that!

  4. Breathe a sigh of relief that nobody is asking when you are finally tying the knot. You’re engaged! It shuts people up… for awhile, anyway. ;)

  5. Whether you live with your partner or not, commit to spending a certain number of nights together undistracted by Internet or other media. This will encourage intimacy—both physical and emotional, and train you both to make one another a priority, even when you’re busy.

  6. *Bonus tip: Consider adopting a rescue companion! This is a great way to begin “parenting” together and it inevitably prepares you and your partner for human babies, if you choose to have them!

Soon enough, you will be married. You’ll be happy that you cherished the time you spent while engaged, and hopefully, continue prioritizing each other, by spending designated time together, focusing on just the both of you!


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Women and HIV/AIDS: Reality & Hope

New contributor Jennifer Sawyer shares information with us about the current state of HIV/AIDS as it affects women in America. 


Tuesday, March 10, 2015 is National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Founded in 2006, National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day was created with the intent to bring awareness to women and girls fighting HIV/AIDS all over the world. In partnering with volunteers, the foundation strives to educate the public on two aspects: Prevention methods and the plight of those suffering from the disease.

What You Need to Know

The spread of HIV/AIDS is still prevalent in today’s society, and many women aren’t getting the care they need. As noted by the Center for Disease Control, even though one in four of those suffering from HIV are women, many of those diagnosed will go on suffering without proper treatment.

“Although most (88%) of women living with HIV in 2011 were aware of their infection, less than half of them (45%) were engaged in medical care,” the CDC reported.


Reasons for the lack of treatment can vary. In some of the less developed parts of the world, the complex medications and skilled care required to fight the disease simply aren’t available. Sometimes, even when medicine and care are available, many patients cannot afford the hefty price tag that comes with them.

Perhaps just as heartbreaking, some women actually make the conscious decision to obtain from treatment, even when help is available and affordable. According to, “Even when they know their status, about 1 in 4 women postpone medical care because of barriers such as family, depression, or threat of partner violence.”

National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day helps give these women a voice, especially the ones who can’t speak for themselves.


How You Can Protect Yourself

Avoid becoming another statistic, and diligently practice preventative methods. No matter your age, race, gender, or sexual orientation, if you’re sexually active, you can contract HIV/AIDS and other STIs. When engaging in any kind of sexually activity, it’s critical that you use protection.

As explained in the Safer Sex
Guide from
, practicing abstinence is the only way to be 100 percent safe. However, using latex condoms significantly decreases the likelihood of the disease transmitting between partners, making it a relatively “low-risk” activity. They advise that condoms should be used during oral, vaginal, and anal intercourse. Always use the appropriate protection during each activity (male or female prophylactics) and use a fresh prophylactic during each intimate act with every partner.

The only way to know for sure that you do or do not have HIV/AIDS is to get tested. If you’re sexually active, see your doctor, and get tested regularly. Visit today for more information, and see what you can do to spread awareness and support the cause!

Editor’s Note: One of’s favorite sex education and conversation sites is Scarleteen: Sex Education for the Real World

Jennifer Sawyer is a full-time student studying Public Health, and residing in Boston. She fills every free moment she has consuming coffee, writing to-do lists, and promoting sexual health in all ages, genders, and sexual orientations. Follow her on Twitter.

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What I Want In A Man

I found this blog entry draft that I never published. I really love going back and reading things I felt/experienced from a few years ago and reflecting on where I was in my life then, and where I am now. This list is actually incredibly helpful and I believe it guided me to my current partner. Care to read the inner tickings of my then-dating heart? <3

“As yet another fleeting relationship with a man comes to an end, I gather my pride (not too much was lost, thank goodness), my reasons for leaving, my memories of really delicious vegan food outings, and smile that I have an even sharper, more honed sense of what I want in a partnership — essentially, a friendship-based relationship with my soulmate.

My editor and great friend asked me to write a list of non-negotiables straight from my dating heart; in an effort to narrow the road to my divine love.  I have no idea what I’m going to write, but I will try not to edit too much.  Here goes!

*Has integrity, discipline and self-love, with love to spare* without these there is nothing.

1) No smokers

2) No narcissists

3) Must love kids, dogs, and be mostly vegetarian

4) Must love the ocean

5) Must be a kind human being.  Nuff said!

6) Must be marriage-minded

7) Must absolutely – with all of their being – love and adore me.  Support my endeavors, understand my plight, be around enough to really know me, and give me enough space to grow and soar.

8) Not be jealous.

9) Not necessarily have a drug addled past, as most of my exes do.

10) Have a strong love for their mother

11) Be very sexually attracted to me and have a high sex drive.

12) Be into monogamy, with me able to explore with women at times with or without him present.

13) Love himself, respect himself, be health-focused, progressive politically, non-judgmental, a feminist, humanist and animal lover.

14) Must have some kind of spiritual path.

15) See a future for us that he is willing to invest time, energy, money, imagination, his spirit and his body in.

16) Be present for us.

17) Not be out of town more than in town.

18) Be an affectionate person.  A sensual person.  Not a grouch!

19) Love life and the people in it.

20) Have a connection to nature, travel, instinct, be intuitive, able to listen and receive lessons from me a well as teach me.  Have a professorial nature without condescension, and above all, value closeness, and be able to see the details as well as the big picture.

21) Be financially thriving with the ability to rebuild as needed; ambitious and able-minded.

22) Like strong women, pedestalize without knocking down.

23) Wants one fantasy girl, not a hundred.

24) No sex addicts, drug addicts, alcoholics or other active abusers, or addicts that run shitty recovery programs.  Sorry.  Been there and done that.  Many many times.

25) Somebody that lives in the present.  Is not depressed all the time, is not overly religious, has a sense of the power and urgency of now without a ton of anxiety, and can sit and breathe inside his flesh and blood without distraction, hatred or self loathing, or a need to criticize others to bolster his ego; is unusually evolved sexually, spiritually, and emotionally, and mentally – somebody brilliant and well-read, who values education and the school of hard knocks, who is not riding the high horse to heaven or hell, has developed ideas of how he feels politically, and romantically, and about women – is not a female novice; does not hold grudges, loves kids, loves the beach, hiking and camping (to get me outdoors more), can respect that I need a lot of time alone, take extra time to make decisions sometimes, has the patience to love me unconditionally, and realizes — upon first meeting me, that his life cannot go on in any capacity with the sparkle and light and thunder that he so desires it to, if he doesn’t snatch me up and take me off the market.  Because he now sees everything he was missing, in one single glance.”

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‘Masterminds & Wingmen’ – New SuicideGirls Interview!

Hi all,

I know I’ve been naughty about keeping in touch! But, I’ve emerged from the ethers. ;) This interview (my first in nine months!) was so worth the wait – I promise! Speaking to Rosalind Wiseman, bestselling author of Queen Bees & Wannabes, the inspiration behind Tina Fey’s Mean Girls movie, was truly eye-opening. This time around, she turns the spotlight on boys. With the help of hundreds of tweens and teens, Wiseman covers the art of social war for guys, including hook up culture, locker room talk, violent video games, and their deep emotional life. Please read, comment and share on your social networks and send it to friends, parents and educators you know. Anybody who has boys in their life!


Masterminds & Wingmen Author Rosalind Wiseman Talks Hooking Up, Raising Better Boys and How To Deal With Cyber Bullies

by Darrah de jour

Masterminds & Wingmen from James M. Edwards on Vimeo.

Author Rosalind Wiseman’s bestselling book Queen Bees & Wannabes was the inspiration for the film Mean Girls,Tina Fey’s hilarious and dead-on satire of high school hierarchies. Back when Lindsay Lohan could sincerely portray a wide-eyed new girl on campus, we all related as she struggled to fit in, be herself, and decode the oft confusing and conniving girl world. In Wiseman’s latest work, she turns her attention to boys; breaking the guy code for parents, educators and young men themselves. With suicide and incarceration rates of boys averaging five to eight times those of girls, this boy bible is needed more than ever. Revealing their capacity for deep emotional life, Wiseman, a foremost anti-bullying activist, offers an important foundation to better understand and communicate with today’s boys.

Darrah de jour: How did you get started as an educator and social justice advocate?

Rosalind Wiseman: Strangely enough, I started by teaching self defense to girls, shortly after I graduated from college. I fell into it, and started a non-profit. I very quickly got to a place of wanting to address the root causes of violence. I went into where girls and boys were and I ran a non-profit for about ten years. I wrote a curricula for social competence, bullying prevention, media literacy and ethical leadership that’s used in many schools and organizations to this day.

DDJ: I remember taking self defense and it had such a powerful effect on me. It even changed my dreams.

RW: Yes, makes sense to me. It’s so fundamental [to] our sense of power and self agency over our bodies. So, if we change that, and feel better about it, it really changes the way we walk through the world.

DDJ: Something particularly unique about your method of relating to teens is that you provide a safe space for them to share their stories and feelings. I remember after the Columbine shooting, when asked what he’d say to the shooters, Marilyn Manson famously replied, “I wouldn’t say anything. I’d listen to them. Which nobody else did.” What drew you to working with tweens and teens –– especially with relation to hot topics like bullying, self-esteem and cliques?

RW: This has been the only job I’ve ever had. I graduated from college and started working on these issues. Very quickly, as a young person in her early 20s, I was struck by how many adults were giving advice but weren’t listening to the kids. So the advice was not helpful. It was not reflective of what the kids were going through. It could be very patronizing. It’s an amazing thing to have to listen to advice from somebody who doesn’t know what they’re talking about. And if you try and argue or present a different point of view it’s perceived by some adults as being disrespectful. I couldn’t stand it. I couldn’t stand that we were teaching children but we were not doing our due diligence to present them with the best information possible. That included listening to them.

Read the rest at SuicideGirls Blog.

Reprinted by GirlieGirl Army.

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Girls Rising

On Sunday, June 16 at 6pm PST, CNN will broadcast an original documentary by Academy Award winning director Richard E. Robbins, award-winning Documentary Group, Vulcan Productions and Intel Corporation called Girl Rising – a feature film about the power of education to change a girl — and the world.

Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Selena Gomez and other A-list actresses contribute voice performances to the film, which features original music from Academy Award winner Rachel Portman, in collaboration with Hans Zimmer.

The film spotlights unforgettable girls like Sokha, an orphan who rises from the dumps of Cambodia to become a star student and an accomplished dancer; Suma, who composes music to help her endure forced servitude in Nepal and today crusades to free others; and Ruksana, an Indian “pavement-dweller” whose father sacrifices his own basic needs for his daughter’s dreams. Each girl is paired with a renowned writer from her native country. Edwidge Danticat, Sooni Taraporevala Aminatta Forna and others tell the girls’ stories, all with profound resonance.

The obstacles they have faced are ubiquitous. Like the 66 million girls around the world who dream of going to school, what Sokha, Suma, Ruksana and the rest want most is to learn. And now, by sharing their personal journeys, they have become teachers.

Visit to learn how to bring Girl Rising to your local theater and support them on Facebook.


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The Hunger

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This month, ELLE delivers one of the best reader essays yet! A compelling, at times languid and un-put-downable story about an aging wife and mother of three who begins the descent into an extra-marital affair. What makes this story so captivating are a few original themes. We don’t often read about women having a “mid-life crisis,” and/or a female perspective to an affair. We don’t often read such brave and frustrating and colorful writing in a monthly women’s magazine (or ever, dare I say?) and last, her age and experience and intelligence – both intellectually and sexually, lend such insights. I didn’t understand all of her references at first (to history, literature and art) but they were worth looking up! Even if you don’t agree with everything she offers, this is a must-read and must-share item! xox

“The further away that bright shore of youth gets, the more desperately one struggles to reach it.” Writer, Ilena Greewood

[Click on images below to enlarge and magnify]

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Jennifer Lawrence, Photoshop and That Voice!


Jennifer Lawrence, star of Silver Linings Playbook. Golden Globe and SAG Award Winner for Best Leading Actress. Kentucky-born. Natural curves, raspy mezzo voice and messy brunette hair. Doll-like skin. Glorious. Embraces her imperfections. Jokes that she has the ass of a 90-year-old woman. An amazing actress just coming into her own. 22 years old.

She said this:

What an inspiration! Unfortunately, today, this Italian magazine cover reveals what gets in the way of THAT awesome message reaching women and other actresses:

Unrecognizable, thanks to Photoshop. Hmmm… me thinks JenLaw needs to speak out on this! And, given her track record, not unlike Kate Winslet, who has numerous times objected to the digital tweaking done on her body, the odds are good that she will!

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Red, White and Femme: Who’s Your Guru? Sex Crimes and Small Town Exaltation of Athletes


By Darrah Le Montre

UPDATE 3/17/2013: The two defendants in the Steubenville, OH rape case have been found “delinquent” on all three charges. Delinquent is the equivalent of guilty in juvenile court. Read the full story here.

UPDATE: I’m honored to announce that my article has been chosen as Recommended Reading for High Schools across the nation!

On August 11/12th of last year, a 16-year old girl in Steubenville, Ohio, was allegedly repeatedly sexually assaulted by members of Steubenville High School’s almighty Big Red Football team. When the story subsequently broke worldwide, it divided a small town and forced us to question the future of our men.

A self-described member of a group that call themselves the “Rape Crew,” Nodianos, or “Nodi” as his teammates call him, starred in an incriminating, vile smart phone video that was posted to YouTube on the night of the alleged assault, then taken down, then reposted to the web by KnightSec and Commander X, who are both affiliated with the Anonymous hacktivist hive. This video features “Nodi” – who clearly borders on sociopathic – maniacally laughing and apparently providing a play-by-play of the repeated gang rape of the 16-year old female victim. During the course of his commentary, he frequently refers to her as the “dead body.”

Events like this force people out of their copacetic, pacified state of separateness, and push us to admit we are all connected. Transgressions like these beg questions about social responsibility, technology’s role in our lives, who is teaching what to our children, what it means to be a father and mother, and why we are even debating whether unconscious means consensual.

Read the rest at: SUICIDEGIRLS BLOG

This article was reprinted by GIRLIEGIRL ARMY.

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Mumford & Sons ‘I Will Wait’ Live -and- Some Words on Love…

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I deeply believe in the divinity of timing. The perfect storm comes together and your life coincides with somebody else’s; but for whatever reason, you cannot be together. I get so much advice from varying sources to aid me in my quest to find a lover/soul mate/husband. Whether it’s my mother praying for a grandchild, my married friends trying to live vicariously through me, or my elders who – with fantastic intuition – urge me to be honest and upfront with my lovers. Then there’s my single girlfriends with all of their coy text tricks that confuse even me! – I just get so much advice!

Lately, I’ve been reveling in my new friendships. Wonderful, enriching, fun, carefree, artistic, artful friendships are abound, and I’m SO enjoying the times I’m sharing with reckless abandon. And, yes, I’ve had some incredibly fabulous and intimate times, too. But, what I’ve come to realize, as my latest lover heads back home to New York is this… I can only be honest. I can only enjoy those fleeting moments of intimacy as they come. I can only be myself and indulge, enjoy and sometimes – wait – before I give of myself. At the end of the day, I am elusive as I am a straight shooter and depending on the day, my lovers are afforded the luxury of my varying moods. Lucky for me, I’ve had some wonderful men in my life that embrace me with arms wide open. Regardless of whether I’m heeding somebody else’s guidance, or throwing caution to the wind and texting them that I can’t stop thinking about them…

Here’s to 2013, and all she may have to offer. From here, on my couch with Oscar, I hope you are happy as all get out, and madly deeply in love!

With love, In health,

Darrah xo


“I Will Wait” Lyrics

I fell heavy into your arms…

And I’ll kneel down

Wait for now.

Break my step

And relent

You forgave;

And I won’t forget…

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