Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Kneejerk statement

I had a brief panic attack as I looked through the referring URLs for my blog.  Lots of looking for porn searches.  I thought that was kind of amazing.  I really felt invaded and horrified by that.  That was hard to feel for a few minutes.  You see, there is this nice blogger who happens to be a chick.  And I don't know about you but I find that people are way less heated about business building than sex.  This woman hasn't done anything sexual in a public way, but she is denigrated sexually quite viciously.  I'll tell you flat out, universe, that makes me feel like I should probably figure what I am: a sex blogger or a mommy blogger and never the twain shall meet.  Because if Naomi Dunford is getting death threats I need to prepare myself for the possibility that some day I might too.  I don't think I can stop myself from posting on the internet.  It's pretty compulsive.

Is it that time again?

Is it just me or are these coming faster and faster?  It seems like just yesterday that I was twenty-nine.  Tomorrow I am going to be fifty.  Fifty.  It sounds kind of old doesn't it?  Gah.  I felt that way about thirty too.  I think this will be ok.  It's probably about time for me to set some new life goals.  I have this bad habit of only planning for a fairly finite amount of time and then getting stuck.  I did pretty much everything I wanted to do by the time I was thirty like I wanted.  Fifty is pretty much the same.  I think that is a life well lived.  Oh man.

I decided long ago that the thing I wanted most was to produce children who were happy and healthy and free from the cycles I grew up in.  Well... that's an interesting thing to judge.  Shanna is 23 and Calli is 21.  They don't look anything like the other members of my my biological family in behavior.  Does that mean I broke the cycles?  It's hard to judge that sort of thing.  They feel free to do things I dislike.  I try hard to make my disliking the thing an impediment to a relationship.  That's one of my cycles I've had to work on.  I wasn't trying to raise people who would be compliant.  Which means we have complicated relationships. It's been humbling to have to listen to my children give me valid criticism.  I have had to learn to tell the valid criticism from the hyperbole and grow in productive, useful ways.  That means there have been up periods and down periods and right now we are in an up period and I hope it lasts a long time.  I think that being ok with the strife and knowing we will eventually find a way through has been tremendously healing for me.  I have been able to love my children in a way I was not able to love my family of origin and that proved to me that I was not simply a broken person.  I am capable of having healthy relationships.  That's been maybe the biggest success story of my life.  It may have been a humble goal but my husband likes to tell me that happiness comes from low expectations.

I tend to think of people as being in my life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.  I've been continually surprised by who falls into each camp.  I think that I have been more socially nomadic than most people.  Either that or I'm just searching for a lame reason to category my life into phases.  Take bdsm for example.  I was very involved when I dated Tom but then I left that community.  I did sporadic play but rarely what I would term a "scene" by the standards I was raised in for many years after that relationship ended.  It was in examining my own weird feelings about my relationship with Tom and my feelings about bdsm that I grew to understand more about the concept of the Old Guard.  In the first four years of my experience in the bdsm community, I wasn't learning what I wanted.  I was learning what Tom wanted.  It was hard for me to grow to accept that.  I didn't know what I wanted.  It wasn't until I got into a deeper cycle of work on incest stuff that I had to look at the ways in which we goaded one another into places that were hard on me sometimes.  He always had my consent.  But my consent is a pretty messy thing.  It exists some days and then I revoke it and feel angry about the incursion.  That set a pretty intense pattern to how we played.  He did not handle the backlash well at all for understandable reasons.  He thought the amount of after care was more than the play was worth.  That's a gross simplification and not really what happened, but it is how it felt.  It is how I processed what was going on.

In the next portion of my life I firmly set aside a lot of those feelings and went off and explored other parts of life.  I treated the bdsm community like a phase to be gotten over.  I did still play occasionally, but I treated it like somewhere I was a tourist.  I had to go away and learn a lot about myself before I could come back and find out what I actually wanted.  I learned how to have a shape in my life that fit into the sex communities.  It took longer than I was happy about, but that's ok.  I gave myself a big window on purpose.

Teaching was this brief intense, idyllic world for me.  I did not know how to have life balance with it.  Some people can, but I couldn't.  The funny thing is, for that I homeschooled my kids I have the utmost respect for good teachers.  As the girls grew up I found my calling.  I always knew that I needed to take up more space in the world than most people.  I didn't imagine when I was young what that meant.  The thing I value the most about the people who have been in my life the longest is they provide the most consistent mirrors.  They give me feedback on how I have changed that surprise me.  I wouldn't be anything without my friends, right?

But mostly I think I'm well on my way to my last life goal.  My funeral is going to be epic.  When I die it will matter.

Friday, August 26, 2011

The good bits are really good

So I'm reading about human pair-bonding habits and the last page made me think of Noah.

Helen Fisher and colleagues (2002:415-17) argued that romantic love includes a consistent suite of traits that cut across cultures. In a sample of Japanese and American respondents, they found thirteen characteristics that were reliably associated with intense romantic love, with few differences between the two samples. A partial list includes:
  • obsessive, ‘intrusive thinking’
  • thinking that the other person is unique
  • prioritizing emotional ‘union’ over sexual desire
  • focusing on positive qualities of the person, while overlooking negative ones
  • increased energy and exhilaration
  • a high sense of empathy and altruism toward the person
  • sleeplessness and loss of appetite
  • feeling greater connection to the person during adversity
  • feeling that intense romantic love is ‘involuntary,’ but also temporary 

Except for that last bit, that is not a bad description for how I feel about Noah this week. Luckily, I don't have to worry about temporary.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I'm not so good at this sleeping thing lately.  I'm thinking a great deal about my role models.  People who are alive, people who are dead, people who were dead before my birth and people who have lived only in the mind.  I spend a lot of time feeling like I should apologize for who I am and what I do.  Not because I really believe that I am wrong.  But because I feel like I do not have the right to make choices that differ from the people around me.  The thing is, everyone does things differently and that's how it is supposed to work.

Ok, I'm beating around the bush.  A while back I had a conversation with a friend/former lover in which we both kind of nudged the other to test the waters.  Nothing came of it that day and that's ok.  He brought up a really important point though.  He breaks condoms.  Due to a wide variety of factors (size, piercings) he has an above average number of breakages.  He *is* careful.  He has had multiple accidental pregnancies because of this.  Uhhh... my baby factory is closed.  After careful thought about how much I loathe everything about being on duty 24/7 for an infant I never want to have another child.  I love my children.  I'm fucking done.  So I'm thinking about permanent birth control.  Not in the next three months or anything, but I think it will be done soonish.  I want to never have to worry about that again.  The thought of pregnancy fills me with revulsion and horror.  I'm done.

I have then been thinking a lot about safer sex.  It's complicated.  What does one mean by "safer" sex? Blah blah blah.  Near as I can see it there are a few reasons to use latex (or equivalent) over all contact between bits: disease, pregnancy, or show of good faith.  Most everyone is pretty loud about the disease one and I agree with it.  I have been pretty rigorous throughout most of my sluttery with barriers.  It's important!  I drank that kool aid.  I think it's a good flavor.  I'm going to deal with that pregnancy bit forever.  Then there's the good faith bit, and that's tricky.

If you are a slut you are supposed to tow the party line about doing it safely at all times in all ways.  SSC is based on that. used as a battering ram by people who claim that is what it means.  What an awesome history piece.  The opening of the RACK definition mentions my historical associations.  I guess I was ignorant.  It's interesting how often that is coming up lately, my ignorance.  Anyway.  I'm avoiding again.

I'm thinking about how I feel about unprotected sex with people other than my husband.  I haven't done it.  This is still hypothetical in the future.  I'll tell you that the sticking point is the word husband.  I have been told that baby making sex is husband sex and at this point unprotected sex = baby making sex.  I'm a big fan of two forms of birth control.  If I am sterile and a guy is sterile then pregnancy is such a low possibility that I'm willing to risk it.  I'll say that flat out.  I'm brave enough to trust two surgical operations.  Then comes disease risk.  Unless you believe that diseases manifest out of nowhere, there are ways to ensure that people are not carrying diseases.  It's really simple actually.  You just go down to your local clinic before engaging in activities and voila!  

But oh man.  Then there is that party line.  I probably don't mean it in the way you think.  However you think it.  I worry about not representing the "right kind" of promiscuous sex.  I'm pretty defensive about my behavior and all.  I worry that sex with Noah will feel less special.  I don't honestly think it will.  I'm pretty base about such things.  I'm pretty darn sure that I will think it is hotter than the sun to come home after sex with someone else.  Uhm.  Yeah.  I actually really like that idea.  I think that idea is so fucking hot that I am going to take a break to masturbate.  I'll be in my bunk.

Thanks to the internet I know that lots of other people feel the same way.  Either that or one person has been very prolific at writing stories.  This is a fairly basic biological urge.  Evolution programmed me to think this is hot.  Why should I carry shame for enjoying it?  Seriously.  At this point it is still hypothetical and I already feel guilty.  Ridiculous.  I'm a smart girl.  I want to lead a long and healthy life.  I promise you, oh internet, if I sleep with someone without using a condom I will do my preparation work.  I will ensure that the person in question is not a disease risk and I will prevent pregnancy at all costs.  And then I will decide if it will add more drama to my life to use or not use a condom.

It's fairly reasonable to ask why I don't just default to using condoms because that's a good idea and all.  There are some downsides to being raped repeatedly throughout your childhood.  And bodies were designed to glide on other bodies, not on a piece of rubber.  Condoms hurt and I am at a point in my life where adding any more pain to my body is repugnant.  I have had tearing and resultant burning for over a week with each time I've used a condom recently.  It's almost enough to make it not worth having the sex.  Dilemma.  

I've been thinking a lot about my position as a sexual outlaw.  I use that mockingly because I have never done sex work and I'm pretty sure it is considered part of the deal.  But I break laws with sex.  I have sex in public places.  I am always very disappointed when I have a partner who isn't up for it.  I suspect that one of Noah's biggest appeals is that he really and truly is up for doing anything and everything I want from him sexually.  That's useful.  But there are parts of unlawful sex he cannot help me with by definition.  

The thing is they are crimes because if someone accidentally finds us then we have harmed those people by engaging in the act we are engaging in.  Which makes what we are doing dirty.  You know that scared nervous feeling you get when you make out with someone just out of sight of people?  Doesn't everyone do that at some point when they are young?  Ok, the geek boys will smack me and shout that not everyone spends time making out when they are young.  Whatever.  I can't explain exhibitionism but I presume I don't have to.  If what I am doing is perfectly fine behind closed doors then it is probably more exciting for me to do it in public.  It's a wiring thing.

So yeah.  Unprotected sex.  Public sex.  Taboo sex.  I really miss the part of me that is willing to take very calculated risks with self confidence.  I take fairly big risks.  Kind of.  Not really.  I take risks that sound really bad but aren't once you listen to the details.  I'm very logical about the risks I take.  Which is kind of hilarious.  "Don’t knock rationalizations. I don’t know anyone who could get through the day without two or three juicy rationalizations. They’re more important than sex."  But what happens when my rationalizations are trying to make it so I can have sex?

So I'm up late at night thinking about how I can feel more comfortable in my skin with the decisions I make.  Even though I'm not making choices that would be right for other people, I'm making choices that are ok for me.  There isn't a One Twue Way.  My personal religion seems to be formed around a bastardized notion of gnostic sin I got from Noah.  Something is only a sin if you are ashamed to talk about it.  He told me it was the basis for his open relationship with a previous partner (*wave*).  I've been thinking about it a lot.  

I'm thinking about the possibility of unprotected sex with men other than the one I am married to.  My husband (within certain parameters) is fine with it.  Why am I worried about breaking the sanctity of my marriage in this one more way?  Partially because I've been told quite clearly that it would be bad.  I would be bad.  That's dirty.  I would be defiled.  Just go read a message board anywhere.  Oh man.  But I wouldn't be.  That's the thing.  No one would know unless I told them.  I would still be just me.  With upgrades.  I think this is what being an adult actually means.  I get to make decisions.  I get to make choices amongst a dizzying array of options.  I am not at the mercy of my fate.  I do not have to do what people "do" just because it is "done".  

The trick is to do it and not feel shame.  The shame is poison.  If you feel shame about what you are doing you should not do it because shame gets into the water and the soil and the air and it is poison.  I feel shame because other people tell me that my choices are wrong.  "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.”  Dr. Seuss told me that.  I worry because anxiety was taught to me.  I'm supposed to be afraid of what people think of my actions.

And here is where the fun part goes away: my sister raped my brother almost thirty years ago.  My sister allowed her husband to rape her son almost ten years ago.  My sister taught her daughter to perform oral sex on her son about ten years ago.  I have no idea what she has been up to since then.  It scares the shit out of me.  According to my brother he hasn't told people that she did it.  Until me.  And I have told the whole damn internet.  My father spent decades raping his daughters and no one stopped him.

I am very good at putting on my public face and having my public persona.  But with the intense pressure to behave "appropriately" comes this simultaneous backlash of anger that makes me compulsively want to break rules.  I have broken some pretty big ones.  I stole borrowed my mom's car when I was 15 before I had a license because I promised someone a ride and I couldn't back down.  Want to know how I got caught?  I uhhh forgot to put my headlights on as I pulled out of a lighted parking garage after Rocky Horror.  And the registration was expired.  That incident is why I couldn't get a license until I was 18.  You see, I gave my mother the money to pay the fines and she bounced the check.  Once you do that the fees go up and I was well aware my mother would just bounce the second check.  I had to put on the public face of not acknowledging the fact that my mother was literally stealing from me.

If I said anything about it I would endure a tirade of hysteria about how I blame everything on her even though she is the victim in life.  I see that pattern emerging for me with Shanna.  I don't vocalize it, but I think it.  But I'm not the victim any more.  I now hold absolutely all of the cards.  I have all of the power.  Do I want to use my power for good or evil?

At this point in my life I am neither a victim nor a martyr.  I've made choices to end up where I am.  I'm pretty fucking thrilled with my life, actually.  I'm still slowly trying to sort through the house.  I'm not doing anything wrong.  I'm trying as hard as I can not to hurt people.  Sometimes that isn't good enough and I'm sorry for that.  I really like fucking multiple people. I'm going to keep doing it.  I'm going to make my decisions about safer sex based on actual risks not perceived status around said decisions.  And I'm going to let go of feeling bad because I'm breaking this taboo.

And what is up with this shit about me feeling like I don't get to consider myself a sexual outlaw because I've never been paid.  Oh man.  I spent years in a relationship that was pretty extreme trying to keep up with the bad asses.  But I've never liked actual pain all that much.  It's kind of funny.  I want to be an edge player.  I don't want to be in a lot of pain.  It's a competitive thing.  I can cop to that.  Not many people eroticize things like being suspended 75' off the ground.  I learned to orgasm only with permission and on command.  I have been hog tied in a bath tub and tied so I could barely breathe.  We did a lot of breath play.  I have been well hanged.  With pictures to prove it.  Because without pics it didn't happen, right?

There is this idea in my head about absence of self without a consistent mirror.  That's convoluted.  I don't exist if I can't see me in other people.  In other words, whatever group I am standing near I will try as hard as I can to conform.  When I notice that I am really different from the people around me I feel as though I was just publicly shamed.  Because there will be people who disapprove of me in any group.  There's a lot to disapprove of, yo.  So I run away.  Because I cannot conform to the norms of any group I have ever been part of and I don't know how to feel like it is ok to deviate from the norms.  I assume people dislike me despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

So coming back to this idea of gnostic sin.  I'm very certain that I am not hurting anyone right now.  And if no one is getting hurt (physically or mentally) then I think the activity is ok.  I do not participate in any formal moral structure that judges any of my actions.  My only judge and jury is whether or not I can look at myself in the mirror.  Have I done right by the world.  Have I done my best to make this world a better, happier place?  Then I'm ok.  And there is no cookie anywhere in the world big enough to make me feel like I have the external validation I need.  I have to just accept that I am going to do what I am going to do and it's ok.  In 100 years no one will remember or care.  So why not?

My body's talking to me
It say,'Time for danger'

It says 'I wanna commit a crime
Wanna be the cause of a fight
Wanna put on a tight skirt and flirt
With a stranger'

The problem is finding balance.  And the first towards balance is sleep.  Night.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


I just had an interesting epiphany.  I was reading up on the SEC and I realized... I'm not sure I agree with their mission.  So my random spin on this: the SEC ensures that the stock market doesn't devolve into the Wild West and there is fraud.  But oh look!  They totally failed!  They have been participating in the fraud!  So I think that to a large degree it might be better to get rid of it as a government office.  The answer isn't to try and change the fact that humans like to commit fraud.  If there was not a government bureaucracy to solve this problem... it would be solved any way.  This is something that would be pretty fucking easy to solve these days.  The internet can solve this problem.  I think that private groups would form to help fill this function.  Yes, some people would get screwed.  Dude.  That already fucking happens.  Why lie and say that it works?

I really think the SEC should be dismantled.  I think that what records they have should be made available to the public.  I think that private watch dog groups would go after this and build the cases against these companies.  I think that if people stopped having the protection of government they would have to learn to be more self-reliant.  We did not build this fucking country with the safety of a federal umbrella.  I don't think that people should be protected from fucking up.  There.  I said it.

Holy shit.  I just went did the little Advocates quiz about where I am on the political spectrum.  I'm not actually a libertarian anymore.  I'm a liberal.  According to this highly specific dogmatic non-nuanced simplistic internet quiz.  And that makes me squirm.  I'm an idiot.  Really.  I don't think I know what I am.  On one hand I could easily construct a politic agenda out of my lifestyle choices.  It would be kind of funny for me to do so.  I guess I feel like I am a realist?  I don't think that all government agencies should continue to exist.  If we do not have enough money to do what we are doing... we need to change the equation somehow.  Some agencies are broken.  They were formed with nice intentions and all... but they were formed to solve problems we no longer have.  It is not hard for people to make complaints now.  I don't know for sure how I believe it should be done though.  That's the rub.  That's what traps me in the current spot of indecision.  I don't like what we have.  But I don't like what we have.

People will get fired.  Lots and lots of people will get fired.  I think that people need to stop living alone.  I think that people need to learn to live on a lot less money.  I think we are going to have a very depressed economy.  I think that people will have to feel desperate and scared.  I think that there will have to be sad things that happen.  I think that those cycles happen in all societies.  There isn't a way to have a perpetual growth curve.  It can't happen in nature.  I don't think that broken agencies being dismantled, or at least broken down into a bit that can be useful.  If the SEC became some sort of informational or organizing force that worked with private groups, that I could see being useful.  But they can't be enforcement.  They are enmeshed in the bad.  They are the bad now.  They have to be pruned from the tree.  That is how this draining part of our government can be pruned back to make the overall system healthier.

And I feel like that makes me an elitist bastard.  I feel like I am sitting pretty in my privilege.  I married someone in an industry that is doing well, of course I feel smug--right?  And that is true but it isn't.  I am pretty carefully preparing our lifestyle so that we can take a massive financial hit and be ok.   However that happens with whatever vagaries of fate one can dream up.  I am doing a really lot of long-term planning for all of my goals.  I am doing everything I can in every way I can dream up to prepare for future problems.  That last sentence would be easy to blow past.  Yeah yeah, everyone does.  I am really not living in the now.

I guess I feel like politics, government agencies, worrying about the emotional weight of "should be" true stuff is kind of oppressive and takes up too much time.  Whether I like it or not eventually all societies go down hill.  Our society looks like it is doing so to me.  I really don't have time emotionally to worry about fighting the treadmill back to try and slow it down.  That isn't my role in the story.  Other people have that role.  That is because of a lot of privilege, I suppose.  But I genuinely believe that the agency was created to fill a role that no longer exists in society.  Why is it evil to eliminate it or change it in such a way that it actually works?  In the process a whole lot of people should be fired.

But I have this guilt because I think a whole bunch of people should be fired in a down economy.   And I just deleted this really long, really convoluted paragraph in which I end by revealing my horror at the magnitude of the responsibility for any decision.

And this is why I'm hiding at home.  I don't feel I could deal with the weight of guilt involved with picking the wrong side at any point.  Oh my god.  I'm so glad that my opinion doesn't mean anything.  I'm a god damn peon.  I mean nothing and it doesn't matter what I think.  I feel really guilty for that.  I want to beat myself over the head with the fact that I am selfish and bad for not wanting to be more politically active about every topic under the sun.  I don't have time.  I'm tired.  I have babies who need me.  And then I feel like I am letting down feminism.  I can't be bothered to be political.  I have kids.

This is why I don't read the fucking news.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


As long as I feel ashamed of engaging in the behavior I am obsessed with it.  Either I can't have any ever or I am bad, or I think about it all the time and I feel like it crosses over into other parts of my life.  I don't know how to have balance.

That's why this is so important to me.  I have to get over being ashamed of the things I want.  Because I want them and it is actually ok for me to want them.  Even though I am a mother.  Even though I am a mother it is ok for me to want ridiculous amounts of promiscuous sex.  I'm not hurting my family by wanting it.  If I started going out and pursuing it constantly and neglecting my family that would be a problem.  But I'm not doing anything that hurts my family when I occasionally in my time away from my kids have sex with another consenting adult.

This is why I want to let go of feeling this shame.  I just haven't figured out how to do it yet.  It's kind of complicated.  My father started raping me when I was a baby.  How do I ever feel ok about having these feelings?  How do they ever stop signaling that I must have wanted it and it was all an acceptable thing to do to me.

I kind of hate sex.

Sex is complicated

The super frank way I handle my sexuality is not appropriate for children.  The way I talk about it.  The way I pursue it.  Not. For. Children.  The way I handle my sexuality makes a fair number of adults extremely uncomfortable.  How do I raise kids who can have a more "normal" view of sexuality?  I don't have a normal view of it.  Growing up it was pretty clear that my options were celibacy (my mom and mostly Aunt Vonnie--it was a running joke that she didn't put out) or being the kind of whore who ruins my life regularly with toxic men (go Denise).

The idea of not knowing what sex is till 10 or so really weirds me out.  I don't know what it will be like to grow up with children who are ignorant so long.  I taught my niece and nephew how to use condoms way before then because it was necessary information in our family.  And no one else would talk about diseases or contraception at all.  I have books on what age appropriate sexuality is, but it's still a weird concept.

You see, because I'm the kind of person who wants to host sex parties.  Let me just take a moment to say that hosting a sex party is very complicated.  There are a few other layers of things going on that make everything way way way more complicated.  Because really what I want to do is have a woo woo sex magic ritual and that's an even more specific kind of event.  That kind of event requires rather a lot of thinking, planning, discussion, etc.  But I have these little kids around.  At this point in time I'm aware that some day soon Shanna is going to turn around and ask me point blank what a sex magic ritual is.  As I sit and think about it right now I think my answer should be, "Sex is something you do once your body is physically mature and you want to.  Magic is a way of thinking about what you want really hard.  And a ritual is where you think really hard about something you want with other people helping you focus more on what you want so that you think about it harder than you can alone."  That's an ok answer, right?  Because I don't believe there is any chance we will just stop talking about it at all.

And holy shit.  How do I feel about my child growing up knowing that her parents are into sex magic rituals?  No, she doesn't have a clue what it is about now.  We aren't graphic in the slightest.  We talk about people and emotions.  We don't talk about sex acts.  Shanna is going to grow up hearing a very odd therapy sort of talk.  I mean, we sit around and talk about the people who are involved in the ritual and what their various potential levels of involvement could be (nothing graphic) and try to get a sense of what to expect.  A lot of what is going on here is that I can't be in control of everything in the world.  But I can be in control of this very small setting on this one day.  I can be in control of who comes.  And that has been a rather fraught process.  I may have lost a friend over it and that makes me sad.  I have had to deal with the overwhelming guilt and shame that I went from in-my-head having a fairly ordinary party to these increasingly complicated layers of intention and want and overlapping needs.

I didn't realize up front that I was doing a sex magic ritual.  It wasn't until I did extensive negotiations with most of the people coming that I realized I was trying to set the stage for that.  I have only done sex magic explicitly with one person.  I think of him as my personal shaman.  Our relationship has gotten very complicated over the more than 10 years he has been in my life.  Some day I should send a thank you message to the woman who connected us.  Ok, done.  I kind of like reflecting when and where I walk away from writing in the blog to do other things.  I don't know if it is ADD or what but I really can't finish something in one go.  I just can't.  I peck at everything.  I don't think it is perfectionism because it's not that I'm trying to be perfect.  I just have to think about the next step before I can have it.

I'm going to be a big judgy bastard.  I think there is a big difference between people who are sex positive and people who actively hunt a lot for new partners.  I know people who hunt.  I don't like how they parent.  There.  I said it.  I like the children of monogamous households.  Which really this is selection bias.  I don't know very many children who have grown up in poly households.  Very very few.  I know a few adults who were children in poly households.  They are neat.  But uhm... I like the children of monogamous parents because I feel more comfortable with the kinds of acting out they do. Which is to say that in the far less than 500 hours I have been around "children of poly households" in aggregate over my entire life I had feelings of discomfort and I blamed them on the kids.

And that is the kind of judgy bastard I am.  Ok, fine I'll deconstruct this again.  Why do I have a problem with poly parents?  Because I think my sexuality is something that should always be on the side of a closed door from my children.  I do not flirt in front of my kids.  I cannot be a sexual person in front of my kids.  I cannot hunt.  I do not want my extra "partners" around my kids because I am uncomfortable having that energy around children.  I have felt really uncomfortable when I am dating someone and they want me to hang out around their children.  In almost every case (with one huge exception and I really respect him) there was more hand holding and hugging and PDA type behavior than I found appropriate.

Where is the line of what is ok to do in front of your kids?  Or even where in my house?  When I am interested in sex I want to have a lot of very heavy groping in my life.  It's awesome and fun.  I am very uncomfortable with the prospect of trying to be secretive about it around my kids.  That's not a good feeling for me.  I have been secretive about my sex life since I was two years old and I shouldn't have had a sex life to be secretive about.

When I am otherwise doing well emotionally I get off on every part of being sneaky about sex.  I fucking love that I am the chick who sneaks off at parties.  And yet that is clearly acting out behavior and there are places I am not welcome because of it.  Awkward.  Shouldn't I have to give up on that kind of acting out now that I have kids?  Large swaths of society thinks I am inappropriate for doing that.  I could even link to a very old blog post with a poll about it.  Fully 1/4 of my friends thinks that is not an ok thing to do.  And these are the people who are open minded enough to be friends with me in the first place.  Let's not ignore that incredibly high bar here.

25% of my friends (who responded to that poll) disapprove of a very consistent part of my behavior.  That's absolutely a high enough percentage to make me go into convulsions of shame.  Because that (to me) means if that was more of a general humanity sort of poll it means more like 80% of people will think I am disgusting.  Cue bad self talk tape I don't want to play today.

Why do I feel I have to be celibate because I am a parent?  Oh let me see.  Maybe because the parts of my sexuality I enjoy the most are the parts that push the boundaries of what society considers acceptable.  Silent quickies on the couch are really shitty.  I'm fucking tired of them.  If that is all my god damn sex life is supposed to have for the rest of my life you can take this job and shove it.  Cue running away and engaging in acting out behavior.

But how did I act out?  I went to an adult only party.  Where people were already naked.  And heavily indicating that they like extra marital sex.  And I went to a former partner (who has loudly stated he is still interested) and I suggested running off because I hardly ever get to be in an environment where there are no children so I never enjoy sex.

I feel like a dirty disgusting whore.  And sometimes that is really hot and sometimes it makes me cry.  I feel so much shame for wanting sex the way I do.  I feel like I am obviously dirty.  I am contaminated.  I must be sick for wanting this the way I do.  And then I won't let anyone touch me in any way because I feel like they will be made dirty by touching someone who wants sex the way I do.

So I kind of want to have a sex magic ritual.  I kind of feel like there might be some worthwhile emotional work to be done in this area.  Kinda.  And on one hand I feel like I should only be saying this to the very short list of people I feel comfortable engaging in this kind of party with.  But on the other hand, continuing to believe that I should be ashamed of talking about this part of my sex life is a lot of the point.  Let me restate: I have already lost a friend over this party.

Why do I feel like I have to be celibate to be a good mother?  Oh man.  Because being queer and kinky and poly means not only that I have sex with my husband (I feel ashamed of almost any touching around my kids so our marital sex is rather limited right now) and I occasionally sneak out in a way that I can completely hide from my kids and keep secret (limited primarily to heteronormative behavior because casual sex with women is way more complicated than I have time for, men can get it up on demand if you select carefully) but I am being flagrant to the world about things that I feel I have to hide.

The closet sucks.  I do talk about being queer, kind of, in front of my kids.  It really doesn't come up.  I have friends who are queer, so obviously my children see examples of it.  But I don't engage in any behavior that would look queer to them.  Kinky is something that I have put on hold 100% until my kids are older and can be left alone longer.  I don't feel ok having that in my house and I get very little time off.  Poly?  Dating feels like the same thing.  I don't want to take that much time away from my family.

It's not that I don't want these things in my life.  But I have massive issues around my kids seeing any of it because I feel ashamed.  It feels like I am supposed to.  When I make the decision to take people off the guest list because they do not feel safe enough to have a sex magic ritual in front of I lose friends.  It really really feels like I should be ashamed of having these things in my life.  If I am doing something at all, ever that some people won't like then I am bad.

Why do I think I have to be celibate to be a mother?  Oh I don't know.  Maybe because I can't be satisfied with the limited shitty sex other people want me to have so it is easier to just shut the whole system off.  And just not be me.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I am not toxic.

Sometimes I do things that would be very bad things for other people to do.  Most people shouldn't head out to a non-sex party and pick up sex.  For a variety of reasons this is true.  Other people have different relationship agreements.  Other people have a different emotional attachment to having sex and would be damaged long term.  I feel more cheerful than I have been in literally years.  Other people would be required to figure out how to get their mojo back in some other way.  I don't have to.  I can go pick up a fuck.  It is a coping mechanism.  It is one that can be very broken for a lot of people.  I'm not hurting anyone.  I picked a marriage where my husband not only thinks it is ok, he thinks it is super hot.  I found someone who wants to cheerfully enable me in that coping mechanism.

But I feel like I shouldn't do it!  It's bad!  Bad!  But it's not.  I didn't hurt anyone.  Good golly, both me and the man I picked up went home and enjoyed our partners all the more for the diversion.  We are equally as good of friends now as we were a week ago.  My kids were not impacted in the slightest.  Where is the harm?

I sometimes break the law in ways I will not enumerate online.  *ahem*  I do them with great forethought and planning.  I do it by very carefully weighing my options and the weight of different factors.  I then make a decision for myself.  I don't think that other people should make the same choice just because I do.  I truly don't.  I don't think that other people should use me as a role model.  I think people should live vicariously as I do things they kind of wish they could do and ignore me when I do things they don't want to do.  But it's never that simple.

Who am I to say that anyone else is wrong?  Who is anyone else to say I am wrong?  I don't know.  I know that my feelings of defensiveness come from reflex shame not any actual reservations about my choices.  I think my choices are bad because I think I make bad choices.  If that makes sense.  I think that another person doing it might be making a good or bad choice and it depends on a lot of different factors.  I hate meta shit.

Sometimes my friends can join me on journeys.  Sometimes they can't.  That doesn't make them my friend or not.  If friend was defined as someone I could do absolutely everything with... that would be kind of odd.  I think.

About that slut thing

I start and stop and start and stop.  How to talk about sex.  Is it the feeling?  Does every woman get that ache deep inside them that really just requires forceful stimulation?  Sometimes it feels almost painful, the wanting.  It has been a while since I felt like that.  That kind of desire has been unattainable for me.  Saying that out loud feels like an admission of failure.  Like I have lost my slut card.  Like I should be embarrassed that I have a hard time getting off.  Me?  Once upon a time that was a pretty laughable idea.  I lost that with the first pregnancy.  For a long time it was difficult to orgasm.  I didn't always.  I know that's "normal" in the sense that it is within the range of common experiences.  That's not how my body worked.

I really love sex.  I know that's a common obsession and all, but I think I have been a bit more enthusiastic than most.  For me having sex once a week feels like a Saharan drought.  And the more sex I have the more I want.  When I'm not fucking up my hormones or depressed.  I'd like to find out what life is like with no hormonal birth control in my system.  I remember feeling the kind of desire for sex that I read about in stupid romance novels.  So there.

I had some of that on Saturday.  There is a specific flavor of avaricious sexuality that really works for me.  Naked aggression in the service of voracious sexual appetite turns me on.  Men who want to get laid a lot have to learn how to play games.  Yes yes, we all try to pretend that if they are honest and up front about their emotions they'll get what they won't.  But it's a big dirty awful lie.  Just ask my poor hen pecked husband.

Ok, the hotness.  There are approaches to women that work better than others.

The Slime Over: this is where you sidle over to stand next to one of those passive women who doesn't tell people no and you start pushing.  You keep the conversation going and you escalate glacially slowly so that it always seems like saying "no" is an over reaction.  Obviously, this approach is not my favorite.  When I see this response my response is to want to slam the dear perv nearby in the nose with a newspaper and say "Bad dog".

Then there is Cocky Bastard: you know you are hot shit.  The problem here is that you have to actually have an extensive resume (academic, work, social climbing) and that looks a lot like work.  And even once you have the right to think you are hot shit... you will still need to work on presentation.  Smug is hard to pull off right.

God's Gift: just assume that regardless of accomplishments or not the woman you approach is thoroughly hot for you... and then play hard to get.  It gets me every time.  Bastard men.  I want to have to do some chasing.  But just a little.  I have low self esteem.  If you actually resist me I will walk away fast.

Lost Boys: these are the ones who read as nasty aggressive mean assholes to pretty much everyone in the whole wide world.  And in private they tell me about being raped as a child.  Or beaten.  Or... and they cry.  And I help them feel more whole again.  I give them love and acceptance around something deeply painful.  Then they go back to being nasty aggressive mean assholes to pretty much everyone in the whole wide world... except me.

These are the big ones.  These are my big "types" in my men.  I'm not sure when they became men.  That's pretty recent.  I just can't bring myself to look at Noah and call him a boy any more.  Even if he is biting his finger nail as I type.  He's cute.  I have learned a lot about men in the last five years.  I have learned a lot about what it means to be a boy or a man.  I really like men.  I like people who are responsible and honorable and dependable.  It's all entwined.  And I'm not really explaining the slut thing yet.  I'm really tired though and tomorrow I paint.  I need to go to bed.

Friday, August 12, 2011

I need more me in my life.

Part of the reason I am not posting more is because my computer isn't working properly.  I now live with a Sys Admin and it has been confirmed that I have a hardware issue and I need to take it in to be fixed.  So when I get an idea that I want to explore in writing I sit here getting more and more frustrated and angry and I forget the idea and then I am angry when I go back into the house because I feel stifled and silenced by fate.  I've started to notice that my sentences are getting a bit long.  Interesting.  Ok.  What was that idea again... (I'm now on Noah's computer.)

The thing about running away is, it doesn't actually get you out of your life.  The problem is that you take your life with you.  You just change where you are standing.  The only "out" available in life is death.  And I believe that when I had my children I gave up my right to choose death as an option for a minimum of 20 years and probably ever.  I went through that with a non-custodial parent.  There is no way I could slash their souls.  I can not ever be that selfish.  Especially in the next few years, I am the whole center of their universe right now.  I won't abandon them.

I won't abandon them.  That phrase keeps me trapped.  That phrase keeps me feeling like I am not allowed to have hobbies or separate interests.  That phrase keeps me from doing things I want to do.  I don't feel like there is a way to meet my needs as well as their needs.  This is changing, slowly.  Having a nursling is hard.  I haven't been away from Calli for more than about four hours.  No... I've probably pushed six hours a couple of times.  But not more than five times.  In her life.  She will be a year old in 16 days (!).  That's a lot of fucking contact.  That doesn't leave a lot of time to do the things I like to do.

The problem is, the things I like to do all involve intense socializing.  And running.  Running needs to start any day now in order to give me time to train for the marathon in a way that is reasonable for my body.  I have a plan in place for how I want to approach that.  I should talk to Sarah today about how to get that on the schedule.  Maybe that is what I should be doing during quiet time?  The point being, I don't have any hobbies I am interested in pursuing at home by myself.  That means large blocks of time out socializing in some way.  That really is the approach I have to filling those needs in myself.  I want a community.

It's getting better with Sarah here.  The kind of "therapy talk" that bothers some of my friends is totally ok in my house all the time now.  If we have an interaction and I start having a weird irrational reaction I talk about it.  I don't blame.  I say, "Ok I think it is an irrational reaction, but right after you said that I started feeling really scared.  I feel like you saying that means... and I need to ask you to clarify a bit more about that statement."  I'm allowed to do it all day long and no one thinks I'm weird.  No one tells me that I should stop processing and start living.  No one tells me that what I am doing and therefore that part of me is wrong.  I'm scared because Sarah is inviting people over to socialize.  People coming over is pressure to conform to social rules in my space that I don't agree with.  I'm never sure how much pressure is only from me and how much actually exists in other peoples minds.

I miss me.  I miss being confident and strong.  I miss feeling like a force to be reckoned with.  Someone from MDC described me that way on the trolls site and it absolutely made my year.  My presentation of self is fucking working.  That is who and what I want to be.  I don't feel like that right now.  I feel weak.  I feel thin.  I feel like my skin is very thin and I don't know how to keep other people out and me in.  I constantly feel this free floating miasma to conform to being more like the people around me.  This feels ok in my house because here I have one identity that is firmly separate.  Mom is not thin.  I do not conform to my children.  And that means I feel ok in that role and I don't know how to even think like the other parts of me any more.

Does that make sense?  This is the part that feels like being slightly "multiple".  Right now I do not feel like an integrated person.  My memories of things I did at other times in my life largely depends on how close I am to the emotional state I was in when I had the experiences.  If I am not feeling joy I cannot remember joy.  It is like joy has never existed.  If I do not feel lust I feel like I have never wanted sex and all of my partners have actually been rapists because I never truly wanted it.  But that's a lie.  I know it is a lie.  That is a part of me attacking another part of me and trying to destroy it.  I seem to feel like if I am the mom then the part of me that is sexual needs to die.  It's not really surprising that I feel that way.  My mother gave up sex and dating when I was 10 because she believed she had a bad picker (I agree) and she wasn't going to keep fucking up her kids with bad men.  That was a good decision.  My sister has gone through a string of men so bad I don't think I could make up stories that would be worse than reality.  The last one was decent though.  She dumped him for nagging her about cleaning.  Excellent choices.

It makes sense that I have this association between sex and unfit parenting.  Wanting sex means taking focus away from your children and if you take your focus away from your children then you are neglecting them.  I have a hard time with my constant internal pressure to pay more attention to my children.  Honestly at this point I have the (I hope more) rational belief that paying attention to my children 24/7 is not actually good for any of us and we all need space to grow.  I have work to do to support our family's life.  I have to do the dishes.  I have to clean.  No really, these things are mandatory parts of life and the children need to learn to accomodate the fact that the whole bleeping world does not revolve around them.  Most families wait on that lesson and let school teach their children that lesson.  I don't have that light at the end of the tunnel.  There is no school coming.

What does that mean about the patterns of our days?  As a stay at home, future home schooling parent I have to integrate my identities in my life while not having outside help to monitor them for most of the day.  That kind of sucks.  But I really have no interest in the more common approach so I have to make this work.  I believe there should be a 100% separation of church and state.  I also believe there should be a brick wall between the sex lives of parents and their children.  My sex life in particular is simply not fodder for my children's imaginations.  Ew.  But I don't want them to grow up thinking we are celibate either.  There is a happy medium in here somewhere that will allow us all to be healthy.

Right now I feel like I need to find a way to start interacting with people more.  Baby steps.  I am socially awkward and uncomfortable and I have a lot of work to do in the house.  It's hard to pry myself out.  Even when I am with someone I have known for almost a decade I feel like they secretly don't like me.  It is an act of will to act like I think we are friends instead of acting like they secretly think I am a loser.  It's awesome.  And stressful.  Mostly I'm not up for the stress.  Slowly it is improving though.

I'm trying to be all the parts of me that I like without judging some of them as bad.  No matter what there will be people who disapprove of me being queer or kinky or nonmonogamous.  These are unconventional life paths.  They are part of my path.  How can I figure out how to be a queer, kinky, nonmonogamous parent without fucking up my kids.  Hm.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Things are improving

I have made a lot of progress on the house.  At this point there are 20 boxes left.  Some of those are dvds/cds that need to be ripped before they are gotten rid of.  Most of them are childrens/young adult literature and are waiting for the bookshelf that arrives next Saturday. (!) I will spend next Saturday and Sunday painting the bookshelf and then the rest of the "unpacking" should take ~30 minutes.  Then the boxes will be out of my house.  I am posting on freecycle today to get rid of the boxes.

So when I say I am capable of really ridiculous amounts of work, that's what I mean.  I cried.  I ranted.  I had a few emotional breakdowns (it's really good that Sarah and Noah can be patient with me) but we dealt with why I was having them and I soldiered on.  Because that's what I do.  The actual "unpacking" has less than two hours to go.

Now we get into sorting, decluttering, and storage.  Ugh.  It's not really part of "unpacking" but it is the hardest part of combining two households.  We have been making nearly daily runs to the local thrift store with a van full of stuff.  I had to make a trip over this morning because we can't put the kids in the van yet and Sarah wants to take Shanna to the museum. I must say that I experienced writing that last sentence with butterflies in my stomach and I had to bounce from joy.  Someone other than me is going to take Shanna to the museum.  Oh man.  I'm excited.  I find that I am having trouble feeling present with the "joy" of parenting when I do it 24/7.  That is already changing.

On the decluttering front: we have already gone through bakeware, pots and pans, purses, the glass cabinet, bathroom stuff (this was huge), and a ton of Sarah's clothes. We've done massive book purges, but we probably need to get rid of more.  I had a hard time this weekend because I have already gotten rid of everything I have ever owned that qualifies as "permanent storage", such as my baby box.  All my teaching stuff.  We truly do not have space for things that are not in use.  And I just won't pay for a storage unit.  I uhhh did not bring this up in a polite way, but I brought it up.  From what I could tell, both Sarah and Noah were unaware that I had already done that and it kind of changed their perception of how serious I am about storage.  Maybe.  That could be projecting.  But they had interesting facial expressions as I sobbed.  Getting rid of stuff is hard.  It feels like I am erasing my very existence.  So I get why Noah and Sarah are more resistant, but we only have so much space.

I need to have this house decluttered to the point where everything has a home and we can clean it quickly.  I just can't deal with all the stuff any more.  I am in this house night and day.  I have to feel comfortable in it.  I really feel emotionally overwhelmed by excess stuff.  I feel rather bad that I lured Sarah (who has a lot of cool stuff) into joining the semi-broken dynamic I have with Noah where I constantly badger him to get rid of stuff.  In my defense I get rid of my stuff before I get rid of anyone else's stuff.  Does that make it better?  Probably not.  But as long I am responsible for the vast majority of the cleaning, I have to be able to do it.  And I can't do it if I can't put everything away.

And if I paid a maid service I would still be doing like most of the cleaning.  The problem with cleaning is that you have to be able to sort, put things away, do dishes, do laundry, and be present for the incidental spills 100% of the time to actually be useful to me. The part a maid could do would only free up about an hour and a half or two hours a week.  And I really loathe the experience of trying to get the house tidy enough for maid service and then let it stay tidy until they arrive.  It's stressful.  My kids (until today!!!!) don't usually leave the house without me so I can't schedule things around them not being here to mess the house up.  Only now I can.  Hmmmm.  Maybe this is a more appealing option now than it used to be.  I'll think about it.

I suspect that part of the problem is that I have gotten past the easy (for me) parts of adding an adult to our house I am freaking out because the next bits are hard.  I have to walk a fine line between pushing people to get rid of stuff they have emotional attachment to and letting everyone decide for themselves what stuff they need.  I don't need the same stuff as Noah or Sarah to be happy.  We are incredibly different.  We are materialistic Americans with hobbies, yes there are things we feel we need to keep doing the things that make us happy.  That's not a moral failing.  But where does the stuff go?  This is a small house.  When I measured the rooms years ago I determined that inside the house is around 950' sq of living space.  Adding the garage adds 528' sq.  I am not thrilled with the layout, but I can make it work.

I need to sort through and organize the books and linens (finished before thrift run) and notepads.  Those are the current most over-full areas of the house.  I'm kind of terrified of books, honestly.  I'm not sure where we would put another bookshelf but we may have to find a spot.  Part of the problem is, this house is dark.  If you completely line the walls with bookshelves (that I also don't want to pay for) then it feels like a cave.  I wasn't happy in the house like that.  That was how the living room worked for years.  And it is always messy because the kids destroy the books.  Ugh.  That's why there aren't adult books in the living room.  I wanted to kill my kids because they were constantly strewn across the room.  I feel anxiety in the pit of my stomach just thinking about it.  I was constantly hurting myself and tripping.  I couldn't keep the floor clear for more than 15 minutes and it was awful.  I just don't want that in my life.  It sucks.  We have to fit this layout of books.  I can't put them back in the living room.  I can't deal with the stress.  Or Sarah will find a good bookcase for her room.  Oh god.  Not the living room.  And those freakin notepads.  Does anyone want any 3 ring spiral notebooks?  We have enough to furnish an elementary school for a year.  Freecycle.  That's where those should go.

Which is to say, I'm actually past all the hardest work.  I'm fidgeting stuff around until it fits now.  The kids can be in the same room while I work without making a mess so I can work all day long.  Though I did take yesterday off from the unpacking/sorting.  I'm to the point where I am pretty sure I could stack things in the storage area and have the party this weekend.  Oh man.  That's a lovely thought.  I really don't want to do that, so I'm going to keep plugging away.

It's probably worth explicitly stating that when I am miserable I post a lot.  When I'm being productive I don't post.  I rarely feel the need to steal moments away from happy times to announce on the internet that I'm happy.  Things are on an upswing.  I'm still a stress monkey because I am.  Yeah.  Dude.  Uncle Bob died less than three months ago.  Divorcing my family was also, less than three months ago.  I think the fact that I am to the point where I'm just over angsting about unpacking isn't actually so bad.  I'm still having a hard time being nice with friends.  I think I'm doing well with the girls.  They are both cheerful and seem to be thriving and growing.

I need to just hit post.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

unpacking hell

Work. Work.  Work.  Work.  You want to do this fun thing?  I assign you 100 hours of work first!  You want to do this other fun thing?  I will assign you 1,000 hours of work first!

Being the mom means I have to be the one who gets up and works when no one else wants to or there is a huge mess... and I have to clean it.  I don't want to make it sound like Noah isn't involved or that he doesn't help.  He does.  But he's gone 50 hours a week doing other work.  I'm here.  All.  The.  Time.  So I work all the time.  I don't have space for me in my life right now.  I haven't really written in weeks. I don't have time or mental energy.  I'm not even writing emails because I am so exhausted and brain dead.

I have really mixed feelings about my upcoming birthday party.  I'm not going to have the energy to put together the kind of event I was imagining.  And that sucks.  I am scaling down a lot.  I have to.  That's life.  But the party was a big scale down from the trip I wanted to take.  So I am scaling down again.  That's just kind of how my birthdays go.  Historically speaking my birthdays pretty much suck and I spend most of them crying because I feel like it is reinforced that I just don't matter much to anyone.  Having to do this much work before I can even begin to think about doing any work towards making the party fun means that it is going to be a very generic party.  People will come and pat me on the head and eat a bunch of food (they better or I will have too many leftovers) and leave.  And then I won't see people again for a few years.  I'm feeling conflicted about how this is supposed to "fill up my cup" so to speak.

I feel ungrateful and whiny.  My friends have supported me in the best ways they've been able.  My family is not deliberately making work for me.  No one is oppressing me.  But I feel like *I* am not in my life any more.  I could be replaced easily by a robot with a better temper and more patience.  I feel like me being present means very little.  But dear god I better get off my ass and start working again.  I want to have people come over, right?  That means there has to be somewhere for them to go.  That means a whole shitload of work right now.  It also doesn't help that I have a lot of internal baggage about my house being shitty.  I feel like it proves that I am shitty and lazy and too stupid to care for a house properly.  Inviting people over to see it just twists that knife.

Right now I want out of my life.  But there is no where to go.  This is part of the "for worse".  I really need a break from worse one of these years.  I would like to feel like I exist in my life some decade soon.

Friday, August 5, 2011

no balance yet

Work. Pressure.  Don't get upset.  Don't stop working.  Don't snap.  Don't be fussy.  Don't make anyone else feel bad.  Don't let any of those balls drop.

Today being the mom sucks.