SATRC: The Year of #DTMFA

Kenna Cook

I am getting serious inspiration fatigue from all the “New Year, New You” resolutions that have been floating around since the clock struck midnight to end the dumpster fire known as 2017. I’m over all the posts about new diets, new workouts and new ways to kick your old habits. Instead, I’m going to give you one of the last gems I was able to mine out of the trash heap of last year–an in-depth look at how to get healthy and trim the fat… in your love life!

These questions and my answers were part of 2017’s final round of a rad weekly Twitter event called Sex Talk Tuesday. You can join in on the sex-positive conversation by searching the hashtag #SexTalkTuesday, or by following Sex Talk Tuesday on Twitter.

What clues tell you it’s time to end or change your relationship?

My red flags of impending relationship self-destruction raise when I am trying to change the person or when I am making excuses about why I’m too busy to see them. I usually trust my gut to tell me when things are no longer working in a partnership. Lack of touch is a HUGE signifier for me. Physical touch is my primary language, so when there is less “cupcaking,” I can tell that it is time to end or transition the relationship because our sweetness has turned bitter.

Transition, conscious uncoupling, or #DTMFA–how do you decide which makes sense?

First off, #DTMFA (Dump The Mother Fucker Already) is the hashtag to make my whole year! But, to answer the question, it comes down to why things aren’t a good fit anymore. If it’s a matter of quality time or differing needs with sex or intimacy, transition is a good choice for me. I’m DTMFA when anyone crosses my boundaries intentionally.

Have you ever ended a relationship too late? Why was it too late? What would you do differently now?

Oh the tales I could tell you about how I held onto relationships that were way past their expiration date. I have thankfully shed my savior complex, but that mentality of ‘I’m gonna be the one to fix him’ is a doozy, and one that has me emotionally reeling and in therapy years later. I am no longer Captain Save-a-Bro, but it took work for me to get here.

I’ve also had people end relationships with me that felt too soon. My last girlfriend–who I’m still deep in my devotion and love for–said our schedules and paths didn’t align. I wanted to weather the storm and she wanted to run. The femme for femme struggle is real y’all.

What does a healthy breakup look like? Do you have any breakup goals?

Wait a second, there are breakup goals beyond ‘I never want to see this asshole again’ or ‘OMG, how am I ever gonna get my butt plugs back?’ Sign me up for this life!

A healthy breakup has to do with how I take care of myself after and seeing where I need space and support. I need to allow myself to grieve the loss of the relationship without judgment. Also, I need to make sure I can get all my stuff back from their house–because sex toys are expensive and I’m rather attached to my battery-operated baes. I am still salty about the glass dildo that had to be sacrificed to the asshole relationship gods.

I’ve also found that I’ve had cleaner breakups in non-monogamy because I’m better at seeing when things are really not working for me and there is less relationship FOMO. I’m not as afraid to be single. We need to love individuals more than titles. Being in a healthy relationship is much more important than being in a relationship.

You can set up a healthy relationship even before you start dating by giving yourself some deep self-love. Many women are socialized to believe that if they aren’t in a serious relationship by a certain age, then they are destined to live an unhappy, lonely life. But this idea that being alone equates to loneliness is both untrue and unhealthy.

When you are alone with yourself, you begin to tune into what makes you happy. Giving yourself alone time is part of self-care, and is something that you will want to make sure you work into a relationship.

Before you start dating someone, you need to ask yourself what you need and want from a relationship with someone else, and you can only identify those wants and needs if you are making space to spend time with yourself. When you can communicate to a partner what your emotional and physical wants and needs are, you are telling them that you are able to tune into yourself and, in turn, are able to actively listen to and respect their needs.

So what about you? How do you figure out dating, dumping and developing your healthy relationship skills? Leave a comment below or email Sex and the River City at

Got a burning desire, a burning sensation, or an issue that’s about to burn all your bridges? Let Sex and the River City answer your questions by emailing


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Kenna Cook
Kenna Cook is a pansexual, polyamorous, pun-loving professional sex educator and parent born and raised in the River City. Whether you're inspired or mystified by all those nouns, send your sex and love questions to her for deep-dive discussion featured each month on "Sex and the River City."