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...

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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 about If 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...

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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,...

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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...

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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 stimulation I’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...

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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...

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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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The V-Spot: I’m a Queer Woman in a Hetero Marriage
Nov28

The V-Spot: I’m a Queer Woman in a Hetero Marriage

I’ve been thinking about writing to you for a long time. My husband and I are about to celebrate 11 years as a couple and we’ve been married for six. It’s been amazing and so much fun to spend all of this time on planet Earth with such a soul-mate dreamboat of a life partner. And also: I just keep wanting to hook up with other people. Five years ago, I hooked up with someone. And then I hooked up with someone else a couple years...

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Can All-Natural Kava Really Soothe Anxiety?
Nov28

Can All-Natural Kava Really Soothe Anxiety?

Chocolate is a treat, but when you add kava, chocolate is medicine. At least that’s what Rachael Gibney, a reiki healer from Shutesbury says. She is mixing a bowl of raw cacao with ground kava at a workshop at the Bower Studio in Pelham, showing people how to make medicinal chocolate at home. “It’s really good at releasing anxiety, especially social anxiety,” Gibney tells the crowd as she stirs the pot. Kava is the root of a plant...

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Third Eye Roaming: Only the Yoga Should be Hot
Nov28

Third Eye Roaming: Only the Yoga Should be Hot

Studio owner Audrey Blaisdell says she fell for the yoga behind Bikram, not the “cultish belief system.” It became necessary to draw the line, she says, about a year ago. Prospective students came to fear the authoritarian reputation and mistrust the brand increasingly associated with sexual assault. So, she relaunched, tossing Bikram aside and renaming her Northampton studio at 375 South St., Valley Hot Yoga. In doing so Blaisdell...

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The V-Spot: Are We Ready for a Threesome?
Nov21

The V-Spot: Are We Ready for a Threesome?

Me and my boyfriend of two years are looking to have a threesome. We are wanting to try it with a female, and a male. We are wanting to do this to enhance our sex life, and are not looking to add anyone into our relationship. We are both very open and honest with each other and think this would be a lot of fun for both of us. But we both have a little tinge of fear of it complicating our relationship. I’ve heard it a million times:...

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Astrology: Taurus, look to Brian Eno for calm in high intensity storm
Nov21

Astrology: Taurus, look to Brian Eno for calm in high intensity storm

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “Creative people are at greater risk,” said psychiatrist R. D. Laing, “Just as one who climbs a mountain is more at risk than one who walks along a village lane.” I bring this to your attention, Aries, because in the coming weeks you will have the potential to be abundantly creative, as well as extra imaginative, ingenious, and innovative. But I should also let you know that if you want to fulfill this...

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Free Will Astrology: Nov. 17 – 23, 2016
Nov14

Free Will Astrology: Nov. 17 – 23, 2016

ARIES (March 21-April 19): There is a 97 percent chance that you will not engage in the following activities within the next 30 days: naked skydiving, tight-rope walking between two skyscrapers, getting drunk on a mountaintop, taking ayahuasca with Peruvian shamans in a remote rural hut, or dancing ecstatically in a muddy pit of snakes. However, I suspect that you will be involved in almost equally exotic exploits — although less...

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Beyond the Flu Shot: There’s more than one way to boost your immunity this cold and flu season
Oct31

Beyond the Flu Shot: There’s more than one way to boost your immunity this cold and flu season

The upcoming winter months prompt the return of the flu shot — and disagreements between alternative and traditional medical professionals, and even the general population, about its importance. Reminders of the flu vaccination for Pioneer Valley residents become more and more common, and like every year, people of all ages tend to forget or skip their yearly flu shot The Massachusetts Department of Health states the shot is vital to...

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