Toe Cramp, Brain Cramp 

Dear Audrey,
Sometimes when I’m about to have an orgasm, I get a really painful cramp in one or both feet, such that I have to stop what I’m doing and go “Ow, my foot!” and shake and/or rub it out, which pretty much ruins the moment for everyone involved. What could be causing this? Is there anything I can do to stop it? Should I just try to ignore it in the hopes that the orgasm will happen anyway and make me forget about the horrible, shooting pain in my foot?

Cripes, that blows: it’s like some kind of abstinence ed. aversion therapy program (which can we just all say hooray for the possible non-funding of those abstinence-only sex eds? Hooray!) I asked the internet what it thought, and it turns out that this is not an uncommon issue. Which, weird, right?

But so the consensus is that what you’re experiencing is a charley horse. During sex, are you curling your toes as you’re getting into it? If so: do not do this! Clenching up your calves or feet or toes can bring these cramps on. Also, eat lots of bananas, as a potassium deficiency can make you more susceptible to charley horses. Stretching out your calves a lot can help too, especially if you are a runner or some other kind of athletic type.

If that doesn’t help, or if the pain doesn’t feel like a charley horse at all but something totally different, I would say it’s time to go see your doctor. Which, just in general, if something is hurting you too much for you to do it effectively, probably seeing a doctor is a good idea. I know that I am charming and all but possessing an MD is not one of my many graces.

In other news, I’d like to talk about a response I got to the “there are no men in New York City with the primal masculine fire that I need to sweep me off my feet” letter from a while back.

It begins, “I know you probably don’t want to turn your column into a battle of the sexes,” and goes on talk about how there are nice guys everywhere if women would just take the chance to look beyond bottle-service club guys and whatever (which, for the record, is EXACTLY WHAT I SAID).

But what got me was that his letter partook of the exact same fallacy that the letter he w
as responding to did, which is starting to drive me fucking batshit. Example:

“I have nothing against a strong, independent, career-minded, intelligent woman, but like with men, the signals from the media to women seems to be, you can buy a battery operated replacement for your physical needs or find another girl. You can go and get the necessary genetic material to make a baby so men are not really necessary and besides we will probably cheat on you anyway.”

What? Do people think this? Do all women think any one thing? Even if “the media” is sending them messages? (Also: pretty sure that’s not how lesbianism works.)

It’s that whole dehumanizing “women be all like x but men be all like not-x” thing that people of both genders seem to try to apply to each other (and I say “both” because generally I’ve found that people without a rigidly dualistic idea of gender don’t have this problem). Gender is not monolithic. This isn’t summer camp. There is no battle of sexes.

When did we all forget to remember that some shitty Kate Hudson movie is not real life? I can’t believe we’re even still having this conversation in 2009. Sorry to go off on you, guy. You sound like you’re a nice, if somewhat misguided, fellow. It isn’t about you. It’s just that this sitcom romcom shit is getting really, really tired. Come on, straight people. We can do better.


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