A recent survey of more than 1,413 women, conducted by sex toy retailer TooTimid.com, found that 54 percent of women still hide their sex toys from their partners. This makes some sense, considering some men feel threatened by any phallic objects. But it got us thinking about all the other things people choose to put away before they’re expecting a visit from that special someone. Maybe it’s the jar of vaseline on your nightstand that you ostensibly use to dab onto your chapped lips, per one redditor. Maybe it’s your beat rag or jizz sock. Or it could be something as innocuous as a teddy bear you’ve slept with every single night since you were a kid.
According to PairedLife.com, one of the most important things to get rid of is all traces of a previous relationship:
“This is also an excellent time to throw away anything from an ex that has bad memories associated with it. Any stupid, cheap teddy bears from an ex need to get trashed or donated. Love letters should be thrown away or hidden away where they cannot be accidentally stumbled upon. Photos, clothing and everything else should be your own and not be related to some[one] you used to know. You want your [new paramour] to walk in and feel comfortable, not paranoid that there is someone else waiting in the wings.”
Another thing to consider getting rid of is your roommates: “You need to set the mood, and make her comfortable with you. It only complicates things when you’re trying to do that, and your roommate is sitting on the couch watching the Ranger game and eating PB out of the jar,” reported The 30ish.
All of which seems like sensible advice. But since everyone has different skeletons in their closet, we decided to ask an obsessive-compulsive organizer, a porn star, an Airbnb host and one straight guy and one gay guy, what they put away when they’re expecting a visit from someone they’re dating, hooking up with or trying to date and/or hook up with.
Roberto B., Airbnb host: I’ve never had anyone staying at my house steal anything, but I still find myself putting away valuables like jewelry or money first. Then I’ll hide a sex toy if it’s out in the open (it almost never is). It’s the sort of thing that you’d obviously be embarrassed for a guest to see, but it’s not like they don’t have them, too.
My day job is as a parole officer, and once I accidentally left my badge and my gun out in the open when we had an Airbnb guest staying over. I put it with my keys in a certain place every time, so I sort of forgot — you’re so on autopilot with the placement of certain things that the most obvious thing, like a gun, for example, that you should put away before a guest arrives was accidentally left out on the kitchen table. I’ve made sure not to let that happen again…
Steve M., former serial dater: I live alone, so if I’m not expecting anyone, my apartment can get a bit crusty. So for me, it’s less about what I put away and more about all things that I have to clean. In fact, the only times my bathroom gets the deep clean it needs is when I’m expecting a girl to come over.
There’s no reason to have dirty magazines or anything like that anymore — if you want to watch porn you can do it online, so I don’t have to worry about stuffing Playboy magazines into my mattress or anything like that, because who still subscribes to Playboy? And honestly, I don’t use lotion to masturbate. But I do use it for my skin: I have a bottle of Cetaphil on my nightstand, so rather than wait for a girl to say something about how conveniently located my bottle of lotion above my nightstand appears to be, I just put it in my bathroom.
One time though, I accidentally left a penis straw on my desk behind a stack of papers that a friend of mine had given me as a gag gift. The girl I was on a date with went to grab a condom from my desk drawer and came across this thin brown penis straw. Naturally, she was a bit weirded out, but we’ve been together for nearly two years, so I guess you could say things worked out just fine.
Amir S., executive recruiter: When you’re dating multiple people, easily the most embarrassing thing that you could leave out are things that other people have given you. Like letters, pictures and cards from past relationships that you probably want to hide away. I’ve always been good about keeping things clean, but before my partner and I were married I left a box of pictures, letters and cards from my previous eight-year relationship in the drawer of one of the guest bedrooms. It had been a year since I’d put it there so I forgot about it. My partner found it because I’d asked him to grab something from the guest bedroom. He was understandably mad. I did a full sweep of the house the next day and got rid of everything that I’d kept from my previous relationship.
Annabelle Charbit-Bergenfeld, obsessive-compulsive organizer and author of A Life Lived Ridiculously: I start by putting away the laundry bag and any clothes hanging on the drier rack — I wouldn’t want them to stumble upon any intimate apparel. Also, it’s especially important to hide all pills and medications. I normally keep those on a kitchen shelf, but they get buried in a drawer when anyone comes over. Finally, mail and important documents need to be put out of sight. These things are often piled on a desk, but no one wants others reading their banks statements or seeing a medical test result.
I used to write these silly poems, expressing all sorts of angst. I left them on my desk once, and someone picked one up and made fun of me. I was mortified.
Basically then, I’d add to the list of things to put away (in fact it should be at the top of the list!), journals, diaries and any personal creative writings. In the wrong hands, they can make you feel very exposed.
Aaron Thompson, adult film star: If my wife and I are having a guest over for a sexy evening of threesome-ness, we don’t really “hide” anything, but we definitely do a quick cleaning of the place, especially the bathrooms and the area where we’re predicting sex might happen. No one wants to bang on a couch with Cheetos everywhere or to walk into a foreign bathroom to freshen up, tripping over dirty laundry and the lingering smell of farts in the air.
Even in my younger days when I was single, I rarely would have stuff to “hide” when a guest was coming over, I just more or less tidied up. I think one of the only times I left something out that I wish I woulda hidden was a Third Eye Blind CD on my kitchen counter.
Nah, fuck that. I love Third Eye Blind. I’d still leave it out.