Sex & Pancakes

No matter what your pleasure, get health tips with our sex column by Melissa Fuller.

  • Sex & Pancakes Review

    That being said, I thought I’d do something a little different this week. I’ve recently realized that when I tell people I’m a sex educator they tend to immediately ask me the same two questions.

    They either want to know the weirdest question I’ve been asked or what question I get asked the most—both of which I think come from an interest in what’s considered normal. Despite getting asked these questions a lot, I rarely have the answers ready, so I decided to reflect on them a bit and answer them here.

    First, I can honestly say there isn’t a single question I’ve ever been asked that I consider weird. I’ve been surprised by some on rare occasions but I’ve never attributed a value judgment to a question.

    I think that neutrality and openness are really important to what I do and when I’m asked a question all I’m thinking about is how to best answer it. Asking about sex can be very intimidating and I would never want this to prevent someone from approaching me with a question they have.

    As for the most common questions I get asked, they can be summed up into three categories:

    1. Relationships: Most questions I get are actually about relationships. I used to have a pretty loose rule about staying away from relationship questions because my area of expertise is sex, but I’ve quickly realized that many sex questions are actually about the relationship. We’ve answered a lot of relationship questions on Link Radio and in most cases the answer to them comes down to communication. It may seem obvious, but most of us aren’t the greatest communicators when feeling vulnerable.
    2. How to be a better lover: It’s not surprising that many people want to know how to improve their sex life. These are questions about technique, positions, sex tips—anything in which the focus is on increasing their partner’s sexual pleasure or their own.
    3. Pain during sex:  Questions about pain during sex have been really frequent this year. This can be a particularly complex issue to respond to since the causes can go from basic, such as needing to be more aroused or lubricated, to more complicated, such as physical or psychological health issues. I do my best to answer these questions, while always reminding people that a health professional should be consulted whenever in doubt.

    While these are the most common categories, they definitely don’t cover the huge variety of questions I receive. It’s been amazing to get to write and talk about sexual health with you so I’d like to thank you all for reading, listening, sending in your questions and taking part in making this all happen each week!

    —Melissa Fuller

    If your question hasn’t been answered yet, be sure to check out the Sex & Pancakes blog and Facebook page to keep reading over the summer and submit any new questions you have at
    Sex-pancakes.com.

    Got a quick health question? Just need a resource? Text SextEd at 514-700-0445 for a confidential answer within 24 hours!

  • If I Was in Love with Someone Who Has HIV/AIDS, Would it Be Unwise to Keep Sleeping With Them?

    Sexpert Mel Fuller and co-host Sara DuBreuil answer Concordia students’ juiciest questions:

    • If I was in love with someone who has HIV/AIDS, would it be unwise to keep sleeping with them?
    • Do you feel that men in general are becoming more concerned with their physical appearance because of mass media ?
    • How do I introduce food into the bedroom in a non-gross way?

    Use the in-track comments to skip to a question.

    Do you have any questions for Mel? Email radio@thelinknewspaper.ca. Don’t worry! All questions are kept confidential, so those pesky out-of-province university students won’t find out.

    Melissa Fuller is a sex educator and the creator of Sex & Pancakes, a weekly sex and relationship advice column in The Link. A Concordia grad, she is now studying Sexology at Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).

  • Where are the Pancakes?

    I’m very disappointed in you. I have read all of your columns and there is way too much sex and not enough pancakes in everything you write. I haven’t seen you mention breakfast food once and I demand that you stop misleading readers. Tell me everything you know about pancakes! —Craving Cake

    You’re right. The truth is I’ve focused so much on sex because I actually know nothing about pancakes other than how to eat them.

    I didn’t know where to start so I put my trust in Google and sought out some reliable breakfast food resources to share. I started a search for the sexiest pancakes I could find—a pretty quick search once I eliminated all the pancake porn. Really? So sticky.

    From there I discovered my new favourite cooking blog, Cooking Comically, by Tyler Capps (my new hero). Tyler’s blog delivers recipes through comics and his recipe for “Sexy Pancakes” was the perfect way to finally introduce my readers to a hot sticky mess. Finally, the hate mail would stop.

    Behold Tyler’s perfect Sexy Pancakes. You should probably check out his actual comic since some awesomeness (but no deliciousness) will be lost in translation.

    Sexy Pancakes by Tyler Capps

    Difficulty: A bit of effort but holy shit!
    Serves 2 to 3

    First things first: put the Bisquick down—it doesn’t have to be this way!

    1. Gather ingredients (softly).
    1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    3-1/2 tsp baking powder
    1 tbspt sugar
    1-3/4 cups milk
    1 egg
    3 tbsp melted butter
    1 tsp cinnamon
    Vanilla extract
    Pecan pieces (optional, but do it)
    Granny Smith apple (optional,but do it)
    Maple syrup (optional, but do it)

    2. Grab your dry ingredients and combine (gently).

    3. Add your wet ingredients (sweetly).

    4. Stir (discreetly).
    Not too much though. Overworked flour means tough pancakes. Having a few lumps left is okay.

    5. Put in the fridge (completely) and let things chill for a bit.

    6. Pre-heat and butter your skillet.

    7. Chop the apple
    (fact: all food tastes better when chopped with a sword).

    8. Spoon that batter into your pan.
    It may be a bit thick. This is okay.

    9. Time to add the apples.
    Press the slices right into the batter and cook as usual; wait for bubbles and flip.

    10. Repeat until you’re ready to stack, pour some syrup, throw in some nuts and cream your pancakes.

    11. Serve hot.
    Preferably to a pretty lady/dude/gender non-conforming individual. Then do a happy dance.

    FIN.

    —Melissa Fuller

    Got a breakfast food problem? Beware of adding “sexy” before any breakfast food in Google searches. Or enjoy, whatever, no judgment.

    Submit your (sexual health) question anonymously at sex-pancakes.com and check out “Sex & Pancakes” on Facebook.

    Got a quick question? Just need a resource? Text SextEd at 514-700-0445 for a confidential answer within 24 hours!

  • I’m Making an Online Dating Profile (Don’t Tell). What Should I Expect?

    Sexpert Mel Fuller and co-host Sara DuBreuil answer Concordia students’ juiciest questions. This week:

    • I’m making an online dating profile (don’t tell). What should I expect?
    • What’s the best way to remove pubic hair if I have sensitive skin?
    • Would a threesome be good for your relationship?

    You can use the in-track comments to skip to a question.

    Do you have any questions for Mel? Email radio@thelinknewspaper.ca. Don’t worry! All questions are kept confidential, so Vladimir Putin won’t find out and Russian to your bed.

    Melissa Fuller is a sex educator and the creator of Sex & Pancakes, a weekly sex and relationship advice column in The Link. A Concordia grad, she is now studying Sexology at Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).

  • Slacktivism and Selfies

    Over the past week friends posting makeup-free selfies have flooded my Facebook newsfeed. These pictures are all captioned with “Love Yourself Challenge,” the hashtag #nomakeup and a nomination for a few of the person’s friends to follow their lead by posting a picture of themselves without makeup.

    I didn’t pay much attention to the trend at first, but this weekend a friend caught my interest when she posted one of these selfies with her hair covering her face and a discussion of “the game” people had been participating in.

    First she explained that the makeup-free faces were originally part of a campaign to raise breast cancer awareness. This was the first time I heard of cancer awareness being associated with these pictures—not a single post on my newsfeed had mentioned this link. Even after hearing this, it remains difficult to see any connection between breast cancer awareness and posting makeup-less photos on social media sites.

    There’s a term for this kind of campaign: slacktivism. As the name suggests, slacktivism combines slacking and activism and is defined by “feel-good measures, in support of an issue or social cause, that have little or no practical effect other than to make the person doing it take satisfaction from the feeling they have contributed,” as Wikipedia puts it.

    In the case of the selfies, you also get a nice little ego boost when all your friends comment about how beautiful you are and how you don’t need makeup.
    This trend might remind you of other breast cancer “awareness campaigns” that came before it, like getting women to post vague Facebook statuses with the colour of their bra and no explanation, and to complete the sentence “I like it…” with where they leave their purse (ex: I like it on the floor).

    Over the years I’ve seen breast cancer sexualized through posts about underwear, sexual innuendos and the supposedly cute “I love boobies so let’s save them” taglines. This one may not be sexual, but it’s part of the bigger and more disturbing trend of slacktivism. I don’t know why breast cancer gets taken up so frequently, but I know I can’t be the only one who is tired of it.

    Some people respond to the criticism of these campaigns by saying that it’s worth even the limited awareness they bring because they’re not hurting anyone. But aren’t they?

    These campaigns are harmful to the causes they claim to help. Slacktivism makes people feel good, it makes them feel like they’ve contributed to something and this feeling prevents a lot of people from doing anything real.

    I don’t think anyone is posting these pictures with bad intentions, and I doubt many of the people I saw posting even knew these Love Yourself Challenge selfies were related to breast cancer.

    But in addition to the awareness it doesn’t raise, it’s frustrating that this challenge to love ourselves was defined by not wearing makeup. It seems small, but it’s just one more way that women are told that there is a right and wrong way to present themselves.

    On the one hand it suggests that we are all always wearing makeup and that not wearing it is so difficult and embarrassing that it’s a challenge. On the other it suggests that it’s a challenge for women who do wear makeup to love themselves without it.

    Finally, I think the worst part about this is that it would be very simple to make these posts meaningful. That’s usually the worst part about slacktivism—it’s so damn lazy.

    People could provide details on how to do a self-breast exam, how to locate a health professional to get checked, how to donate money to the cause, or even just stats on how many people are affected by this cancer. That would be a really easy way to provide people with information and actions they can take to spread awareness and make a real difference.

    Today, another friend posted a selfie for cancer awareness, but this time she tagged it #SelfieThatCounts. She didn’t take off her makeup but she proudly held a receipt for her donation to the Canadian Cancer Society and nominated all her friends to do the same with the cause of their choice.

    We don’t all have the funds to make donations, but if you’re planning on posting a selfie and saying that it’s for cancer awareness, please do a quick Google search and offer something useful to go along with it.

    Submit your question anonymously at sex-pancakes.com and check out “Sex & Pancakes” on Facebook.

    Got a quick health question? Just need a resource? Text SextEd at 514-700-0445 for a confidential answer within 24 hours!