The V-Spot: My Sex Drive’s Back But My BF’s Isn’t
Apr24

The V-Spot: My Sex Drive’s Back But My BF’s Isn’t

Writer’s note: This column mentions depression and suicidality. When me and my BF first got together about a year and a half ago, we were having the best sex of our lives! Then I decided with the help of my therapist that I needed to be medicated due to suicidal thoughts and anxiety/depression. The medication helped a lot with my mental illness, but unfortunately it made my sex drive plummet. I was still able and happy to get my man...

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Free Will Astrology: Virgo, cook an omelet over Niagara gorge
Apr24

Free Will Astrology: Virgo, cook an omelet over Niagara gorge

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I have misgivings when I witness bears riding bicycles or tigers dancing on their hind legs or Aries people wielding diplomatic phrases and making careful compromises at committee meetings. While I am impressed by the disciplined expression of primal power, I worry for the soul of the creature that is behaving with such civilized restraint. So here’s my advice for you in the coming weeks: Take advantage of...

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Free Will Astrology: Aries be like Washington, Sagittarius like Lincoln
Apr18

Free Will Astrology: Aries be like Washington, Sagittarius like Lincoln

ARIES (March 21-April 19): After George Washington was elected as the first President of the United States, he had to move from his home in Virginia to New York City, which at the time was the center of the American government. But there was a problem: He didn’t have enough cash on hand to pay for his long-distance relocation, so he was forced to scrape up a loan. Fortunately, he was resourceful and persistent in doing so. The money...

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Free Will Astrology: When life gives Scorpios lemon rinds…
Apr10

Free Will Astrology: When life gives Scorpios lemon rinds…

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Before visiting Sicily for the first time, American poet Billy Collins learned to speak Italian. In his poem “By a Swimming Pool Outside Siracusa,” he describes how the new language is changing his perspective. If he were thinking in English, he might say that the gin he’s drinking while sitting alone in the evening light “has softened my mood.” But the newly “Italianized” part of his mind would prefer to...

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Tick, Tick, Tick … Boom? No bumper crop of ticks this year, but keep your socks tucked into your pants anyway
Apr03

Tick, Tick, Tick … Boom? No bumper crop of ticks this year, but keep your socks tucked into your pants anyway

Every year billions of ticks creep through wooded areas across Massachusetts and New England, feeding vampirically off the blood of wildlife, pets, and humans. With ticks comes the most obvious fear: Lyme disease. But how much of what seems like common knowledge about ticks is really true? Do cold winters or mild winters affect tick populations? Is it really the smallest ticks that carry diseases most of time? “They’re always...

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The V-Spot: When Did I Get on the Relationship Escalator?
Apr03

The V-Spot: When Did I Get on the Relationship Escalator?

I have a few questions about monogamy. I guess, part of it stemming from a recent post I saw on your Instagram — @the_vspot — about “The Relationship Escalator,” polyamory, and monogamy. In my last partnership, my partner and I were very intentional about not falling into that trajectory, but now I think that The Relationship Escalator is something that I want.Can The Relationship Escalator coexist alongside actively constructing your...

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Free Will Astrology, April 6-12, 2017
Apr03

Free Will Astrology, April 6-12, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Be interested in first things, Aries. Cultivate your attraction to beginnings. Align yourself with uprisings and breakthroughs. Find out what’s about to hatch, and lend your support. Give your generous attention to potent innocence and novel sources of light. Marvel at people who are rediscovering the sparks that animated them when they first came into their power. Fantasize about being a curious seeker who...

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The V-Spot: Our Sex Is All About Him
Mar27

The V-Spot: Our Sex Is All About Him

My boyfriend and I have been together for two years and we’re best friends. Mutual respect exists in almost every way between us. Sometimes, however, the sex feels, well, sexist. First, he enjoys watching porn together, but I really don’t. However, he always tries to initiate porn watching even though I’ve told him I don’t enjoy it. Secondly, I perform far more oral sex than he does. He rarely performs oral or hand sex on me, and when...

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Free Will Astrology: March 30-April 5, 2017
Mar27

Free Will Astrology: March 30-April 5, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The dragon that stole your treasure will return it. Tulips and snapdragons will blossom in a field you thought was a wasteland. Gargoyles from the abyss will crawl into view, but then meekly lick your hand and reveal secrets you can really use. The dour troll that guards the bridge to the next big thing will let you pass even though you don’t have the password. April Fool! Everything I just described is only...

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Third Eye Roaming: Yoga for cancer survivors: Calming the battle within
Mar20

Third Eye Roaming: Yoga for cancer survivors: Calming the battle within

Mary Kennedy of Northfield says she could barely move her neck before she began taking yoga with Pam Roberts at the YMCA in Greenfield about six years ago.Kennedy, a breast cancer survivor living with torticollis, a painfully twisted neck, says yoga has at times saved her, making her “stronger and stronger. Now, I can actually move my head to the right again. I have a quality of life I didn’t have before yoga.”Cancer is among the most...

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The V-Spot: When it Comes to Self-Lovin’ What’s Better: Lube or Lotion?
Mar20

The V-Spot: When it Comes to Self-Lovin’ What’s Better: Lube or Lotion?

I recently saw a guy friend masturbating with lotion instead of lube and was wondering if lube would be a better alternative for him. If so, could you explain why? — A Little Help for My  Masturbating Friends One of my favorite conversations to strike up with my penis-equipped friends is: What ever did you do with your penis during your sexual exploration period? If I had had a penis during my teenaged sexual development ages, I’m...

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The V-Spot: I’m Hot; He’s Cold: Clash of the Libidos
Mar13

The V-Spot: I’m Hot; He’s Cold: Clash of the Libidos

I recently started dating somebody who ticks nearly all of the “right” boxes for me. This is the first time since breaking up with my sweetheart of over two years that I’ve felt this way, and it’s really exciting. There’s only one hiccup: He prefers to cuddle; I’d have sex twice a day if I could.We talked about this shortly after we started seeing each other, and it seems like things are workable, at least for...

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The V-Spot: Am I in a Healthy Open Relationship?
Mar06

The V-Spot: Am I in a Healthy Open Relationship?

I’m in a happy, long-distance monogam-ish relationship with the human of my dreams. Really; things are so good. This is my first time having an open relationship, and I think we talk through things really well and effectively. He has several partners — all of which I’ve met and adore — and I can say really genuinely that I’m happy that he has these other sexual relationships in his life. The thing is, even though I was the person to...

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Wellness: Tapping Away the Stress
Feb27

Wellness: Tapping Away the Stress

Emotional Freedom Technique and what it’s all aboutIf anxiety made a baby with a hive of buzzing bees, you’d get me.Hi, I’m an extremely nervous person. My tendency to worry works out great when reporting and I just can’t let a question go, but it’s a burden when it’s midnight and I’m checking the doors — again — to make sure they’re all locked. So, when I heard there is a simple ritual that I can perform myself that may shed my...

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The V-Spot: My Boyfriend Might Be Gay. Should I Care?
Feb20

The V-Spot: My Boyfriend Might Be Gay. Should I Care?

I recently began “dating” my best guy friend over this winter break. He’s told me that he was raised by a super religious mom and that when he was younger he “rebelled,” and experimented with other men, which he blamed on his homophobic upbringing. He told me he’s had sex with another man, but has since concluded that he was straight. I didn’t ask many questions other than, “So, do you think you’re gay?” to which he responded, “No,...

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Free Will Astrology: Feb. 23-March 1, 2017
Feb20

Free Will Astrology: Feb. 23-March 1, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): My astrological radar suggests there’s a space-time anomaly looming just ahead of you. Is it a fun and exotic limbo where the rules are flexible and everything’s an experiment? That might be cool. Or is it more like an alien labyrinth where nothing is as it seems, you can hear howling in the distance, and you barely recognize yourself? That might be weird. What do you think? Is it worth the gamble? If so,...

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Astrology: Week of Feb. 16, 2017
Feb13

Astrology: Week of Feb. 16, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): By my estimates, 72 percent of you Aries are in unusually good moods. The world seems friendlier, more cooperative. Fifty-six percent of you feel more in love with life than you have in a long time. You may even imagine that the birds and trees and stars are flirting with you. I’m also guessing that 14 percent of you are weaving in and out of being absurdly, deliriously happy, sometimes without any apparent...

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The V-Spot: How to Have a Discussion about Self Lovin’
Feb13

The V-Spot: How to Have a Discussion about Self Lovin’

I’m a 19-year-old male college student. I just started to masturbate, but I don’t know how other people will react if I get into a relationship with them and tell them about this. I would like to know how to be fully comfortable with pleasuring myself as well as see how to bring up masturbation in a relationship. Thank you! — Seeking Masturbation without Hesitation I’m reading your question in two different ways: the first is “How do...

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The V-Spot: Open Sex, Closed Convos
Feb06

The V-Spot: Open Sex, Closed Convos

I’ve been in an on-again/off-again, oftentimes long-distance, relationship with my for-now ex-boyfriend for six years. Right now we have a “when we’re together, we’re together” arrangement and we’ve defined our relationship as open in the past.Well, things are shifting again and we’re thinking about moving toward being more seriously together, but still long-distance and open. If we decide to get back together, I’d like one of my...

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Third Eye-Roaming: Self-help and Farts, Local yogi and author writes ‘108 Prompts’ to improve your practice
Jan30

Third Eye-Roaming: Self-help and Farts, Local yogi and author writes ‘108 Prompts’ to improve your practice

Brian Leaf wants you to pass gas, audibly, in yoga class at least once.Why, you might ask? He says the practice reacquaints you with your humanity.The barrier-breaking suggestion is one of many in a new book written by local author Leaf, The Teacher Appears: 108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice. He calls it a “self-help book on intuition.” “I don’t want to turn people off with the semantics,” he says. “I don’t want to be like, ‘oh,...

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Astrology: Be like Calvin (not Hobbes)
Jan30

Astrology: Be like Calvin (not Hobbes)

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Once upon a time, Calvin of the Calvin and Hobbes comic strip made this bold declaration: “Happiness isn’t good enough for me! I demand euphoria!” Given your current astrological aspects, Aries, I think you have every right to invoke that battle cry yourself. From what I can tell, there’s a party underway inside your head. And I’m pretty sure it’s a healthy bash, not a decadent debacle. The bliss it stirs up...

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The V-Spot: How Do I Leave My Husband?
Jan16

The V-Spot: How Do I Leave My Husband?

Hi Yana, I’ve been with my husband for a decade. We married young and, in a lot of ways, he’s a great guy and right for me. But I still want to leave. I did leave once a few years ago and he put me on a major guilt trip until I came home. Things have been better, but I’m still not happy. I feel completely obligated to him because he has no friends and I’m his whole world. I know me leaving would devastate him, but I also know I can’t...

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The V-Spot: I Told My Boyfriend I’d Try Monogamy, But …
Jan09

The V-Spot: I Told My Boyfriend I’d Try Monogamy, But …

Hi Yana,I’m in a relationship with someone who I really love and we’ve been together for three-ish months. Before we started dating he knew I wasn’t a huge fan of monogamy, but I agreed I would try and now I’m feeling trapped. He’s so important to me and I don’t want to lose him. I guess I don’t know how to talk to him about it because I want to be in an open relationship, but I’m worried he will get super mad. Help! — Oh No, I’m...

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Astrology: Leos should forgive all bad drivers and tech support people
Jan09

Astrology: Leos should forgive all bad drivers and tech support people

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In Norse mythology, Yggdrasil is a huge holy tree that links all of the nine worlds to each other. Perched on its uppermost branch is an eagle with a hawk sitting on its head. Far below, living near the roots, is a dragon. The hawk and eagle stay in touch with the dragon via Ratatoskr, a talkative squirrel that runs back and forth between the heights and the depths. Alas, Ratatoskr traffics solely in...

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Does Exercise Have to be Boring? Alt ways to get fit
Jan03

Does Exercise Have to be Boring? Alt ways to get fit

It’s a classic dilemma. The upcoming holidays prompt intense fits of eating followed by the guilt of said eating with promises of a better life for the New Year. New Year’s Eve cues New Year resolutions, and many choose fitness as their goal, making a subscription to their local gym — and then making two or three trips before giving up on the membership.Instead of falling into the same funk, why not turn your fitness...

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Third Eye Roaming: Cogs in the Wheel
Jan03

Third Eye Roaming: Cogs in the Wheel

While everyone stands to benefit from yoga, barriers to entry remain.The practice is meant to end suffering, yet ironically those who suffer the most — poor people, people of color, and those with limited mobility among them — often find yoga inaccessible.That’s a problem leaders of the Adhikara Yoga School in Greenfield seek to address.“I’m just seeing a trend of yoga being expensive, exclusive and something reiterating...

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The V-Spot: The Fast and the Curious
Jan03

The V-Spot: The Fast and the Curious

Sometimes, when I’m in the mood to masturbate, I enjoy watching porn. The problem is when I do, it literally takes me no time to orgasm. Yesterday, I was feeling in the mood to enjoy myself. So, I started browsing some videos.I barely started touching myself and felt the urge to orgasm in a matter of seconds. I stopped and tried to calm myself down, but it was too late. My body responded even without the stimulationI’m a female in a...

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Free Will Astrology: Jan. 5 – 11, 2017
Jan03

Free Will Astrology: Jan. 5 – 11, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Light, electricity, and magnetism are different expressions of a single phenomenon. Scottish scientist and mathematician James Clerk Maxwell (1831-1879) was the first to formulate a theory to explain that startling fact. One of the cornerstones of his work was a set of 20 equations with 20 unknowns. But a younger scientist named Oliver Heaviside decided this was much too complicated. He recast Maxwell’s...

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The V-Spot: Seeking Sex-Positive Ed for My Niece
Dec27

The V-Spot: Seeking Sex-Positive Ed for My Niece

Hey Yana,Over Thanksgiving I spent some time with my awesome 18-year-old niece. I’m in need of your wisdom about a situation I’m trying to wrap my 30-year-old, feminist, protective brain around.My niece lives in a small town, far from her friends, and has been dealing with some depression. She told me that she’s been driving to meet up and have sex with dudes from Tinder. There have been at least two. I think they’re...

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Free Will Astrology: Dec. 29, 2016 – Jan. 4, 2017
Dec27

Free Will Astrology: Dec. 29, 2016 – Jan. 4, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Donatello was a renowned Italian sculptor. His favorite piece was “Lo Zuccone,” a marble statue of the Biblical prophet Habakkuk. As Donatello carved his work-in-progress, he addressed it. “Speak, damn you! Talk to me,” he was heard to say on more than a few occasions. Did the stone respond? Judging from the beauty of the final product, I’d have to say yes. One art critic testified that “Lo Zuccone” is a...

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The V-Spot: My Guy Shoots the Moon Too Soon
Dec19

The V-Spot: My Guy Shoots the Moon Too Soon

Hi, Yana!I’m a 22-year-old woman in a hetero relationship with a guy I’ve been seeing for almost a year. We have a loving and communicative sex life, but are perplexed by a persisting issue! When we are fooling around, he occasionally ejaculates early and/or unexpectedly. He says it still feels like a full orgasm, but sometimes doesn’t even feel that good. We’ve had a hard time identifying when and why it...

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Free Will Astrology: Cancers, be more like William McKinley, less like William Jennings Bryan
Dec19

Free Will Astrology: Cancers, be more like William McKinley, less like William Jennings Bryan

ARIES (March 21-April 19): NPR’s Scott Simon interviewed jazz pianist and songwriter Robert Glasper, who has created nine albums, won a Grammy, and collaborated with a range of great musicians. Simon asked him if he had any frustrations — “grand ambitions” that people discouraged him from pursuing. Glasper said yes. He’d really like to compose and sing hip-hop rhymes. But his bandmates just won’t go along with him when he tries that...

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The V-Spot: My BF Hangs with my Ex-BFF
Dec12

The V-Spot: My BF Hangs with my Ex-BFF

Hi Yana,I used to have a very toxic friendship with one of my female friends. She always made jokes at my expense, was very judgemental, temperamental, and didn’t show me much respect. I cut off ties with her, but she and my boyfriend of over two years are still friends.I don’t tell my boyfriend not to see her or contact her, because that would be toxic, but it does make me very uncomfortable for them to hang out together....

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The V-Spot: Our Post-Abortion Sex Life
Dec05

The V-Spot: Our Post-Abortion Sex Life

I got pregnant this past summer after my birth control failed — I got to be part of that lucky 0.04 percent of IUD users who this happens to. I got the pregnancy terminated and all is well. Or, I guess mostly well. The issue is my partner and I have both been having some anxiety about having sex after what happened. Having an abortion was 10,000-percent the right decision, but, of course, dealing with an unplanned pregnancy was a...

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Astrology: Chunks of the Universe are growing larger for Sagittarius
Dec05

Astrology: Chunks of the Universe are growing larger for Sagittarius

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Normally, I cheer you on when you devote single-minded attention to pressing concerns — even if you become a bit obsessive. But right now, in accordance with astrological omens, I invite you to run wild and free as you sample lavish variety. It’s prime time to survey a spectrum of spicy, shiny, and feisty possibilities; to entertain a host of ticklish riddles rather than to insist on prosaic answers. You...

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