Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Can't.Get.Out.Of.Head.

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.

6 comments:

  1. I am still reading this regularly. I wish I had more time to write thoughtful comments, because I have lots of thoughts about the sex stuff. Maybe some day...

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  2. How interesting - just this morning, I was working on a piece about how how I've pretty much quit asking my potential play partners (SM, sex or otherwise) whether they have any STDs or BBPs I should know about. It's just not a useful question - or rather, is highly unlikely to result in useful information.

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  3. I would really love to hear you expound on what you mean by it not being a useful question. How do you set your behavior if those questions are irrelevant?

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  4. I've quit asking because people are dumb.

    People will say "Oh, I don't have any BBPs/STDs" for a lot of reasons, including sheer ignorance ("I'm not covered in obvious sores, so I must be okay"), shame ("whether I have anything or not, I refuse to think about it, much less share the information"), or out of malice ('nuff said).
    I've quit asking because enough people think "I've got herpes, but right now I don't have an outbreak, so I must not be contagious". Or not having any idea how long some BBPs can lie dormant in the body. Or figuring because they got tested for X, Y and Z, they're totally clean, not having thought to ask about testing for A, B, or C. Or having been tested a few times, a few years back, coming up clean and figuring they're bullet-proof. Or figuring a condom takes care of everything (when was the last time a condom took care of all fluid-to-skin contact during sex for you? it sure doesn't for me).

    Basically, I've come to the same decision in my personal life that my workplace makes for me in my professional life (Universal Precautions) - I assume everyone is contagious, and go from there. I also let potential sex partners know that while the last few tests have come up clean and I took what I felt were appropriate precautions at the time, I have engaged in sex acts and other physical potentially-compromising acts with people who have herpes, hep C and HIV.

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  5. I like your thoughts about this because I like noticing when one is conforming accidentally to societal control, and I find this is sometimes sneakiest when that control is coming from relatively radical social groups, like sex positive advocates. Personally about unprotected sex because even a battery of clean tests only means so much, but I can see why the idea appeals to you.

    I don't have time to go back and read your older posts, but I wanted to mention my thoughts on sex and parenting, which are mostly that I also used to be really, really into sex and now am not, and am not crazy about that. For me, I think the biggest issue is that I used to spend a lot of my time feeling sexy, and all that sexiness would build up and express itself at appropriate times (and sometimes slightly inappropriate times). This isn't really a physical self-image issue for me (although there's a little of that), but mostly that I now spend almost all my time taking care of kids, and even if I feel well put together and active, I don't feel sexy about that. It was a lot easier to feel sexy when I was being an unemployed artist, or even an office worker. Now I feel like I'm somehow supposed to ramp up instantly from days and days of constantly doing not at all sexy stuff to suddenly feel like having sex in my hour or so of freeish time at night. And I have other things I want to do with my very limited free time, things that I do think about all day while I'm hanging out with my kids, like what I want to write on my blog and other people's blogs :)

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  6. "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. "

    I know you already know this, but I'll say it anyway. That is a completely arbitrary line. Why is the sanctity of marriage "broken" at protected vs. unprotected sex? I know plenty of people where fidelity would be broken at any kind of sex. Or kissing. Or hand-holding. Or email flirting. I'll bet that with a little digging, I could find message boards espousing that any of the above acts is the "line" for where you are breaking the sanctity of your marriage. The internet is a an infinite number of monkeys with an infinite number of laptops. Eventually one will write the standard that you like. Go with that one.



    "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."

    That is me too. That is why I had to go to Japan (somewhere far away)- I needed to figure out who I was when there was no one around to define myself off of. Not that I'm recommending Japan for you at this point, but maybe that's what you're doing too by being a recluse? I hadn't thought about that before, but now that I do, it makes sense. If so, be patient with yourself. The process takes a long time, but it's a good process to go through.

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