Dear Richard: Sex, Guys, and Videotape
When I was dating this guy we would take photos and videos of ourselves having sex. We thought it was super hot.
Then a month ago I broke it off and started dating someone new. My ex was really bitter about it, and sent around photos and screen grabs from the video. All of them are of me, sometimes with sex toys and doing nasty stuff. None are of him, or if he is in the photos you can’t tell that it’s him.
What can I do to stop him?
Dear Mr. Freeze,
What can you do? Legally speaking, probably nothing. If you willingly took these photos and didn’t sign some kind of legal agreement beforehand saying that they couldn’t be sent around—and we’ll assume your hands were too busy with lube and toys to draft such a document—then there’s not much you can do.
Think about the Paris Hiltons and Kim Kardashians of the world. They have mega lawyers and even they couldn’t stop their sex tapes from being copied and posted online. So you can try to sue but it will likely be a waste of time.
Here’s the reality, boys: If you don’t want nude photos or videos of yourself flying around the Information Super Highway (or anywhere, really) then don’t shoot them. It’s the only real way to prevent that stuff from getting around.
Now, Mr. Freeze, there is one way to deal with your ex that doesn’t involve lawyers: Call him. He’s obviously hurt by the breakup and lashing out (Did you cheat on him before breaking up?), so try extending an olive branch by making the first step toward a resolution. Don’t email or text—that stuff rarely works well because people generally read notes from their own emotional perspective, so if he’s angry with you then he’s going to read hostility into your words whether they’re present or not.
Once you get hold of him, try to meet in a neutral place; face-to-face meetings always work better when emotions are running high. Don’t go off on him. Instead, ask why he sent out those photos and listen to his response. Understand that there are always two sides to a story, so even if you think he was a complete ass for doing this, try to see things from his perspective. From there, let him know he hurt you. Remind him why you guys took those images in the first place and explain how this betrayal is deeper than just a public humiliation. Hopefully, with some calm, mature discussion where you can both convey your feelings about the situation, you’ll be able to get him to see things from your perspective and stop.
If that doesn’t work, try to move on. It will be stressful for a while, but he’ll most likely get bored and stop.
And if he doesn’t? Well, hopefully you learned your lesson and won’t take nude photos again.
Dear Richard is not a medical doctor, a licensed psychiatrist, a counselor, a reverend, or a rabbi. He has not been evaluated by the FDA, the CDC, or the BBC, and his words are not intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The information is for educational purposes only and it not intended to serve as medical advice. You try this stuff out, you do it of your own free will.
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