Are romantic relationships really that different from platonic ones?

When you think about your romantic or sexual relationships and your platonic friendships, do they exist on the same spectrum or different ones?

It struck me the other day that all adult relationships outside of our families are essentially the same. The only difference is where you draw the boundaries. What degree of emotional intimacy is allowed? How much time will you spend together? What emotional needs will you meet for each other? Is physical touch allowed — touching, holding hands? How about kissing or cuddling? What about sex?

The only problem is that in most relationships, we don’t talk…


Will you listen to the devil or the angel on your shoulder?

Her blonde hair fell over her face, her white, feathered wings spreading out behind her. In the blue glow of the LED lights, she looked even more angelic than the costume she was wearing. The theme of the party, Heaven & Hell, was made for Layla. The strappy pale green brought to mind a classic Victoria’s Secret angel. Only the mischievous glint in her eye offered a hint that she wasn’t as innocent as her outfit made her appear.

In contrast, my thigh-high vinyl boots, leather harness, dark makeup, and glittery devil horns took on a more sinister look in…


How I’m working on getting them back on the same page.

My life has all the makings of a smutty novel. I’m in an open relationship with my husband, and in a given month I have multiple sexual partners (both men and women). Whether with my partner(s) or on my own, there are few opportunities for sex and connection that I’m not open to. Our child-free life allows us to travel to adults-only, clothing-optional resorts, meet swinger friends in other cities, and spend debaucherous weekends in hotels with other like-minded folks.

No one puts limits on my desires. I have found recent lovers open, communicative, and eager to please. So besides…


How spending too much or too little time on these four things can impact your publishing productivity.

I have every intention of publishing several times a week. And yet, over the last couple of weeks, despite spending plenty of time writing, I am finding I struggle to get pieces to a point where they’re ready for publication.

Deep down, I know not every article has to be well-researched and brilliant. In fact, some of my best-performing pieces have been dashed off in a writers-block-breaking, censor-free fit of just trying to get something on the page. …


In the fight against imposter syndrome and self-doubt, I still rely on this twenty-minute video to help me project confidence.

I was in the final semester of my Master’s program and working at a job I felt I had lucked my way into. During my last annual review, my female boss had told me I needed to dress more professionally if I had any hope of moving up in my career. I felt out of my depth, uncertain about the future, and like an imposter in professional settings.

And then I saw Amy Cuddy’s TED Talk called Your Body Language May Shape Who You Are.


“Sit there and watch me. Don’t move.” His eyes lit up, and my body responded.

When I was only a few months sober, I found myself in the middle of a swinger sex-fest at a nude, adults-only resort. Unlike the previous year when I’d been drinking and partying with everyone else, this year, I felt like an imposter in my skin.

I felt out of place and restless, unable to settle into the inhibition-free debauchery. Even though my body was responding to the very sexy situations I found myself in; I was unable to connect with the amazing experiences I was having. …


To avoid cognitive decline, you only need money, time, good relationships, health insurance, plenty of sleep…

I adore Dr. Sanjay Gupta — he’s a neurosurgeon, journalist, CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent, and a handsome, funny guy. His newest book, Keep Sharp: Build a Better Brain at Any Age, is a must-read to understanding how the things we do today will impact our dementia risk later in life. It’s well-researched, readable, and incredibly informative.

Yet as I was reading it, I couldn’t help but think, “Does Dr. Gupta know how most people live?” …


I didn’t realize how much swingers are still shamed until I saw this comment

I’ve been writing for public consumption for about 6 weeks, and thanks to an experimental article unexpectedly getting tons of views, I’ve had to get comfortable with people disagreeing with me.

On a recent story inspired by a swinger event (where swinging had nothing to do with the rest of the article), I received several comments about swingers. Most were about how shallow swingers were assumed to be, but there were others, including this one:

I would suggest that a group of swingers should not be the determining factor in any big decisions.

Excuse me? Those swingers are our friends.


MUSINGS

I wonder how much I missed while I was drinking

It feels a little gauche to write about vacations in the 2nd year of this pandemic, but this morning I was flipping through some vacation pictures and reflecting on past trips. Before I quit drinking several years ago, we went to England, Norway, and Bali. That means I drank my way through England, Norway, and Bali. I wasted some of the best vacations of my life getting, well, wasted.

My first sober vacation was to an all-inclusive resort. When I had been to these types of resorts before, I felt like I had to drink enough to “get my money’s…


How not being open about our open relationship might be limiting our ability to develop deeper connections.

My husband and I have an open relationship without many rules. As it evolves, our relationship is meandering along the pathways of non-monogamy, taking in the view and trying to figure out what it wants to be when it grows up.

Our only unbreakable rules are

  • Respect each other,
  • Use barriers during sex, and
  • Don’t tell anyone in our regular life.

Keeping our relationship strategy a secret is one of our biggest sources of conflict. The thought that I couldn’t bring a partner or lover to meet my friends or family dampens my enthusiasm for new connections. My husband is…

Sophie Rose

My writing is as varied as my life: sex, sobriety, non-monogamy, books, research, relationships, and mental health are my favorite topics.

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