#113) Three months ago...I went to brony meet-up in my local area. I won't say where it was so it won't look bad on other bronies from the area but there were about 17 people there. One was a guy and he and me got on really well at the meet-up. We decided to meet up a few more times just the two of us. We met up three times and everything was fine. I found out he smoked pot and drank a lot at the third meeting and said I didn't like it but he was okay with that and I didn't mind too much. Anyway after that we were talking through Skype like normal but he was kind of excited to meet up again and he said he loved me. He lives about an hour and ten minutes away so we met up again two weeks later. But when we met up again he was sort of desperate and forceful.
Anyway, he said he wanted to have sex but I wasn't really in the mood and I was a virgin so I didn't really want to lose it to him that quickly. You read that right - 'was a virgin'. I'm not sure if it was rape or not, because at the time I sort of wanted to do it and I agreed to it and let him, but I felt sort of weak and pathetic afterwards, [the sex] hurt quite a bit and I now feel like an idiot for doing it. He has been more distant with me since as well and I don't really know what to do (he doesn't return my calls very often for example and replies to my Skype messages with single word replies). Can you help me with some general advice? You seem to be a caring person. I'm 19 by the way.
Answer: This is definitely a serious issue, although I'm most alarmed by him being more distant with you since having sex. That makes it seem as if the guy in question was just using you for sex, which is definitely possible. It's a harsh reality if that is the case, but it's important to understand that the deed is done; you can't go back in time, so you instead need to find ways of coming to terms with what happened.
It's really hard to say one way or the other, but it doesn't seem, based on your question, that you were raped. You mentioned that it was consensual at the time, and so from his perspective he's guilty of being pushy and rushing things, but it's unlikely that he's guilty of rape. Sadly, he isn't accountable for the regret that you feel if at the time you agreed to have sex with him, as unfair as it may sound. The blame doesn't really rest on his shoulders, although he should feel at least a little bit ashamed that he's now giving you the cold shoulder. Rather than rape, it seems as if you agreed to it, and now regret having sex, which isn't the same thing. It's bad, of course, and I'm sure you wish that you hadn't done it. If you cared about the guy and now feel as if he doesn't really love you, then I can understand why you would be upset. If you think you should have waited a bit longer, that's also understandable, although at the age of 19 you are legally entitled to have sex without anyone getting in trouble, and plenty of people out there have had sex younger than you did. Hopefully having those points flagged up will help you come to accept what happened here.
This is a fairly difficult case to address, due to the considerable amount of variables on display. For example, you mentioned that he smokes weed; I'm not sure if the sex occurred under the influence of drugs or alcohol or anything, which could have lowered your inhibitions and made you agree to something that you now, in a more level-headed state, regret. I would really need to speak with him in order to get both sides of the story, which sadly goes beyond the capacity of this column. What I will say is that people should learn from your example here and be careful when meeting people they don't know. Always hang out in groups when meeting strangers off of the internet. You took a big risk meeting up with him a few times on you own; again, I don't know if you met up in public places or at each other's houses, but it's still risky.
If he said he loved you, I would be willing to believe that he either has no idea what love is, or, as seems more probable based on his forcefulness after confessing his 'feelings' to you, that he was saying the words in an attempt to try and coerce you into opening up to him. A lot of people, sadly, play the 'love' card in order to have sex with people, even if they don't genuinely mean it. As for your feelings of guilt, they will fade in time – when you become sexually active with someone who cares about you, I'm sure the pain you feel towards your 'mistake' will be reduced. As for the physical pain you felt when you lost your virginity, that's pretty normal and shouldn't really be a prolonged cause for concern. You didn't specify, but I hope you guys used some form of contraception. As this was your first time, unless you have some sort of medical reason, I doubt that you'd be on any form of birth control, and so I hope that the guy had the decency to wear a condom during. I'm sure if you were pregnant you would have realised/told me, but it's worth bringing up that point just in case.
Based on the evidence that you have provided, it seems that the guy took a liking to you at the initial meet-up, and that subsequent meetings and Skype chats got the two of you to a point where he thought you would have sex with him. Now that he's had sex with you, based on what you have said, it seems as if he's disinterested. However, a possible twist in the tale would be that he actually feels pretty bad about making you go through with it, and that is why he's acting all distant. If he noticed your post-sex reservations, he might now be concerned that he forced you into it, or that you perceive he did, which could explain his odd behaviour. You guys really need to talk this out (admittedly that will be quite difficult if he's blanking you). If you care about him enough, keep trying to communicate with him. If you don't really feel that close to him, though, I'd advise you to do your best to explain to the guy that he didn't necessarily do anything wrong, but that you're not prepared to see him again.
Another point or two: people rushing into sex and regretting it is quite common, not just in the brony community. This kind of thing happens both with people meeting up over the internet and people living close to one another. Don't spend a long time going back over it in your mind; it'll just concern you more. If you are sure that he didn't rape you – that you made no effort to tell him to stop or resist him during sex – then the best thing for you to do is to forgive yourself for making a mistake that more people make than you think, and to not let it consume you. Losing your virginity is only as big of an issue as you make it. This shouldn't impact upon your future sex life, and neither should you feel negatively disposed towards sex because of this. Sex is a great thing, even if you may have done it wrong this first time; learn from your mistake, and make sure that the next guy you have sex with cares about you, and that you are comfortable with him first.
Due to the potential severity of this case, if any further thoughts cross your mind, feel free to note them to me.
#114) Some guy I know draws a lot of pony rule 34 art and he's been known to draw fetish stuff too. But he always rips on Cutie Mark Crusader porn (stuff he calls 'foalcon') and gets all high and mighty reporting it and complaining about it. I think it's really hypocritical when he's been known to draw lots of dirty pony stuff himself. My question is: can one clop artist frown on another clop artist and is this behaviour hypocritical?
Answer: It's really a 'lesser of two evils' situation. I'm not going to say that the non-CMC guy has the absolute moral high-ground, even if he notices a difference between child pornography and adult pornography. The thing is, the first guy clearly has boundaries in his mind over what is and isn't acceptable, and, rather than a matter of content, it seems to be perceived age that serves as the qualifier for him. As a result, he's quite happy to draw 'adult' ponies in pornographic situations engaging in fetishistic behaviour, but he thinks it's unacceptable the moment 'child' characters are used, such as the CMCs.
While that's fair enough, it's hard to praise the guy when he's drawing other forms of pony porn. I'm not going to get into a debate on how 'old' the characters in the show are. Suffice to say that drawing porn of them isn't a good thing, and while the first guy may feel as if he's better than the second guy by being opposed to CMC porn, that doesn't make him any less of a burden on the 'respectability' of the brony fandom. A lot of the fandom don't care about the porn that exists within it, but that doesn't really mean much to me; I care about how others perceive the brony fandom, and the outcome does appear to be quite bleak based on what I've heard from many external sources. In a recent episode of Tosh.0 (love him or hate him), for example, it was broadcast to an entire audience on Comedy Central that bronies masturbate to ponies. That is what people think bronies do, and it's because of both of the people in your question that that increasingly more accurate stereotype exists.
I'm unsympathetic towards pony pornography, and so I'm never going to defend someone who draws it. I've seen people drawing it because they 'want to be popular', or because they're 'forced into doing it', or that they 'don't really like it but other people seem to' but all of those reasons seem to be excuses more than anything to justify perverse illustrations. Cutie Mark Crusader porn is arguably worse than porn of, for example, Twilight Sparkle, but it's not really something to be proud of if you draw the latter but not the former because it goes against your 'strict' codes of conduct.
I'm sure one clop artist can look down on another clop artist, just as any person who does a bad thing can look down on someone who does something worse. It doesn't make the behaviour any less distasteful, and it doesn't make the bronies look better in any way whatsoever. I think you're right in saying that your guy is a hypocrite, and I imagine he rips on CMC porn because he wants to make it seem as if what he's doing is less offensive than it is. Going so far as to report CMC porn seems odd, given the sort of depraved stuff he appears to draw himself based on your description. I'm sure different clop artists have different tastes, but they're both taking something fairly cute and innocent and forcing it to become something that it isn't. How 'old' the character is is only a marginal point of difference, ultimately; if your dog shits twice on your carpet, and one of those shits is bigger than the other, that doesn't make the smaller shit any less foul.
#115) [Answered by my good friend latecustomer] "Friendship is Magic" rule 34 art gets even crappy artists popularity. I've seen people who draw terrible pony porn but they still get a lot of views and comments. I'm thinking of going down that route...I don't like that stuff but if it gets me popular I think I might be willing to do it. What do you think? Is it worth drawing pony porn to get popular, or should I keep doing my usual non-porn stuff?
Answer: I don't know if drawing "Friendship is Magic" porn is a magic ticket to instantly gain you popularity, but I'll assume you're right as my answer aims to tackle your question from a perspective of personal values. Also, the advice I offer further down should apply regardless of whether or not you do pony porn, so let's get to it.
"Is it worth drawing pony porn to get popular?" The answer depends on what your personal goals and values are. You should begin by asking yourself why you're drawing MLP art (and this would apply to any art, fan or otherwise) in the first place.
If all you're after is popularity, then drawing pony porn is certainly one way to become known, but you should think about what this would mean. You yourself already admitted that you don't like pony porn, so would you be fine with being known as a pony porn artist? How about knowing that your newfound fans are all fans of pony porn? Would you be able to keep drawing pony porn, a subject matter that you don't like, just to maintain your popularity? Would you begin to resent it? How committed can you be to doing something you don't like for the sake of gaining some measure of popularity for the very thing you don't like? Only you can answer that.
Regardless of whether or not you decide to draw pony porn, there are many other things you can and should be doing anyway if you're aiming for popularity as an MLP artist. For starters, no matter what level of skill you have, there's always room for improvement. Study artists you like. Keep practicing to shore up your weaknesses and hone your strengths. Regardless of anything else, the better you are as an artist, the more likely you are to become noticed.
Take a look at your art style. Is there something about it that's unique to you? Could people familiar with your artwork recognize a picture of yours among other pictures from equally skilled artists? Take a look at some popular pony artists that you like and I'm sure you'd see what I mean. You'd have no trouble recognizing a drawing by WhiteDiamondsLtd, JJ, Atryl, OZE-JP, or Crenair. Even after someone else has vectored Joey-Darkmeat's sketches, you still recognize Joey's work as the base. Find that thing that you that you already do, and nurture it. Your unique style will help you stand out, and that goes a long way to drawing attention.
Don't forget to network. There are plenty of MLP fan art groups (*cough*Ponies-For-Everypony*cough*) full of friendly folks who are more than happy to help spread good artwork. Enter their art contests. Make friends. If you see a drawing you like, leave the artist a comment stating why you like their drawing, or engage them by asking questions about their work. At the same time, engage anyone who comments on your own work. If you talk to people who like your art, they're more likely to remember you. Just be sure you're SINCERE in what you say and do as empty words and gestures will get you nowhere.
Good luck in whatever path you decide to take. I hope that you find something useful among my ramblings.