Sexting: do men and women do it differently?

When you think of sexting, you usually think of men sending unsolicited pictures. But what about the relationships that thrive on it – and the women who love it? Madeleine Holden has three simple tips for taking a good dick pic. First, zoom out. Second, clear the background of clutter. Third, experiment with angles. Then, for extra credit, consider tone, narrative, aesthetics and the desires of the recipient. It was always those that elevated a dick pic from to use my scale a C- to an A+. As founder of Critique My Dick Pic, a popular Tumblr blog that ran for five years from 2013, Holden wrote thoughtful reviews of photographs of about 500 strangers genitals, from almost 10,000 submissions. …

Self-partnered: the sudden, surprising rise of the single positivity movement

From Emma Watson to Lizzo the singer who puts the sing in single more and more people are throwing off outdated stigmas and embracing a happy life on their own Once upon a time we were brought up on fairytales. If we were lucky, they said, we would meet a prince or princess and live happily ever after. If not, we would tread a lonely road to the grave, with only cats to comfort us. But an increasing number of single-positive people are rejecting the notion that true love is the only path to happiness. Just this week, the actor Emma Watson told Vogue how a bloody influx of subliminal messaging had left her stressed and anxious because she was …

How we met: He said: We could just get married. I said: Oh yeah, cool.

Carmena Su, 47, and James Wvinner, 64, live in Blenheim, New Zealand, with their seven-year-old daughter. They both work as yoga teachers, and run a film production company The first time Carmena saw James, she knew he was the man she was going to marry. They were at an intensive two-month yoga course in Australia Carmena was 28 and from New Zealand, and James, 45, was from the US and she spotted him on the first day by the door of the yoga studio. He was sitting down, he had this awesome chest, dreadlocks, and I saw immediately he had such a beautiful warmth to his eyes, she says. A psychic had told her that she would meet her husband …

‘Dad described the plot of Psycho at the dinner table’: how my parents taught me to love film

The Guardian film critic on how his mother and father shaped his relationship with cinema My parents are dead now, and I think about them both every day. They loved the cinema, and would go all the time as a young couple. My mum had a crush on the young Marlon Brando after seeing him in On The Waterfront and as Mark Antony in Julius Caesar. But it was my dad who was the more voluble about film, if not necessarily the more opinionated. Albert Desmond Bradshaw came to London from Belfast in the 1950s to be a photographer. That was where he met my mum, Mollie, who was working as a secretary. They lived in Highgate, north London and …

Is this the cultural moment of the hot priest?

Fleabag had the hot priest, Grantchester has its sleuthing vicar and even HBOs Young Pope sequel is returning soon but why are we so infatuated with them? Are we living in the cultural moment of the hot priest? my editor asked. I wanted an assignment, and for my sins she gave me one. Theres the one on Fleabag, she said. And the an Irish priest (Andrew Scott) whose vow of celibacy is temporarily compromised by Fleabag. He, in turn, punctures Fleabags cynical shell. Then theres Sidney Chambers (James Norton). Chambers rides a bicycle around the bucolic postwar English countryside, getting mixed up in intrigue while battling his own demons, including combat PTSD. Since Chambers isnt sworn to celibacy, he also …

For women like me, postponing the menopause would be a blessing | Sonia Sodha

Scientific advances that prolong fertility can only be a benefit to many would-be mothers Let us imagine for a moment that we lived in a world where male fertility dropped off a cliff by the time men hit their mid 40s, leaving a group of men who wanted to have children but couldnt. When would science have produced a fix? I am going to hazard a guess that it would have been quite some time ago. But it has taken until 2019 for a fledgling treatment to delay the menopause by up to 20 years to be offered to women, even though the idea has been around for treatment involves removing and freezing a small piece of ovarian tissue from …

Why are thirtysomethings lonely? Because society doesnt value friendship | Arwa Mahdawi

Social media has been made the scapegoat for millennials reporting loneliness, but the cultural primacy in adulthood of career and family has much to answer for, writes Arwa Mahdawi Millennials arent just the poorest generation; they are also the loneliest. According to data from YouGov, while digital habits undoubtedly affect mental health, research hasnt provided conclusive answers regarding the relationship between the two. When it comes to loneliness, I have a feeling that the culprit isnt so much technology as the fact that many millennials are in their 30s, which is a natural time for friendship dynamics to change: people start focusing on advancing their careers and building families rather than socialising with pals. It feels as if we are …

Sunbathing topless should be a pleasure we can all enjoy | Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett

Its sad that younger women are covering up on the beach for fear of harassment, says Guardian columnist Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett According to sexual liberation movement. For me and other women growing up in a culture of British discomfort with all things bodily, these confident French women in Cannes or St Tropez seemed glamorous and worldly. A teenage obsession with French cinema helped me to discover the work of Franois Ozon; in come to seem change the rules in Malmo in 2009). After all, the chair of the citys sports and recreation committee wryly noted, many men have larger breasts than women. More recently, cultural and political movement is called during the recent heatwave after they were asked to cover …

Lena Dunham on Love Island: I’m asking the same question they do can you love after hurt?

When the writer and director arrived in Wales to shoot a new drama, she was nursing a broken heart and romantic ideas of British life. Then she discovered the reality soap opera… As I planned my summer in Wales, my head filled with visions of romance, I supposed Id do what the heroines of novels did when they crossed the pond for a new life: go to the shore to take the healing air. Meet a man and move into his stunning manor, possibly watched over by a sinister housemaid. Scurry through cobblestoned streets and into dusty bookshops, furtively pulling up the hood of my cloak. Go to a banquet and dance to piano music in a great hall. Taste …

Wheres the advice for men on how to propose? | Daisy Buchanan

Asking for a womans hand in marriage is traditional, but without guidelines too many men are coming a cropper, says columnist and features writer Daisy Buchanan The greatest curse of womanhood is also its biggest blessing. If youre a woman, its easy to find strong opinions and instructions that will inform you exactly how you are expected to conduct yourself during any given occasion. Plenty of the advice is useless, contradictory and mad, but if you want to live a peaceful, uneventful and rather dull life as a woman in the 21st century, you can get by if you use the following terms as broad instructions: Dont make a scene and midi dresses. Men, on the other hand hoo boy. …

Why childhood sweethearts no longer measure up and six other ways dating has changed

A new study has found that online dating is now the dominant way heterosexual people find romantic partners. What else can we learn? For future generations, the question: How did you and Grandad meet?, will be answered with: Tinder, obviously. Within eight years, the internet has become the dominant way heterosexual couples meet. The latest Derek Thompson (@DKThomp) “How Couples Meet” chart, updated July 2019pic.twitter.com/Gjvh2ZqTqs 34% in 1990 to 20% in the most recent data; other routes to relationships, such as meeting through work, family and neighbours, have also declined. At first glance of the graph, it looks as if the number of couples meeting at a bar or restaurant has gone up, but thats only because they met online …

How we met: He had a reputation for playing the field. He sounded really dodgy

Amanda Woodard, 56, is a journalist and Clive Hopkins, 60, is a screenwriter and teacher. They have been together for 23 years and live in Sydney Amanda and Clive had been hearing about each other for about 10 years before they met. We had mutual friends and I would always hear about Clive doing this or that, Clive on the picket line or Clive cheating on some girl, she says, and Clive laughs. Clive had a reputation for not sticking with girlfriends very long and just playing the field, so I wasnt keen to meet him at all. He sounded really dodgy. I would hear wonderful things about you, he says. That youd had lives in London and Barcelona, that …

Im 34 and still a virgin. Whats wrong with me?

More reality, less fantasy, will help you understand who you are and what you really want, says Annalisa Barbieri I am a 34-year-old virgin. This wouldnt be such a big issue were it not for the inevitability of heartbreak. Every now and then, I fall in love with someone often at work and I become infatuated before I know them properly. There is always a big conversation in which I admit to my feelings and she says she doesnt feel that way at all. Then Im heartbroken for about four months. These feelings are purely romantic and I never fantasise about having sex with any of the women. I think I might be asexual but I cant be sure, given …

Falling in love is the worlds best natural high | Hannah Jane Parkinson

Romantic love is a hormonal rush that screws you up. It is basically awful and yet also the best experience there is If you search online for falling in love, the first result returned is: What are the symptoms of falling in love? Symptoms. Because what is falling in love if not our brains and bodies riddled with all-encompassing, uncontrollable sensations? Can love be diagnosed? Yes, pretty much, according to Freud. And there is a genuine condition known as broken-heart syndrome, if things head west. Falling in love and being in love are different things. Its falling in love that really screws you up. It is falling in love that leads one to play songs on repeat platitudinous, cloying numbers, …

Don’t hate the Instagram engagement stunt ‘branded’ love began long ago | Arwa Mahdawi

Viral videos posted by social media influencers has drawn a lot of ie, but many traditional rites of romance are based on ad campaigns Surprise! We live in influencer hell Dearly beloved, we are assembled here today to witness a heartwarming story of modern #love. I hope youve got tissues at the ready because its guaranteed to bring a tear to your eye. The story starts in New York with a glamorous heterosexual couple: Marissa Casey Fuchs and Gabriel Grossman. Fuchs is a director of brand partnerships at Goop and a fashion influencer with almost 200,000 followers; Grossman is an investment banker. (Please dont immediately hate them because of their jobs, wait a few paragraphs and hate them because of …

Chinese wedding photos – a picture essay

Pre-wedding photo sessions have become big business in China, as couples demand lavish mementoes of their big day in advance. Gone are the days when couples would be satisfied with a single black and white photo to commemorate their wedding China. A couple pose at the 27 Rome Brand photo studio The busy streets of Wuhan (left) and Beijing are backdrops to photos In the main touristic spots in different cities across China, it is easy to see couples having their pre-wedding photoshoots, which become the must-have for every Chinese couple before their marriage. Unlike western weddings, where couples usually have their photos taken on their wedding day, for Chinese people it is quite popular to have their day-long photo …