The acupuncture place near my house is being an adventure. I feel like the first gal did a competent job with the symptoms I mentioned but I didn’t feel a dramatic difference. The second lady listened to my background stuff, kind of sagged just a hair, then she said, “I have a 27 year old daughter who struggles with mental health issues and I’ve fought depression my entire life. I’m very familiar with this being a long-term slow battle.”
Then she proceeded to do the same points as my former favorite acupuncturist whom I stopped seeing because I couldn’t deal with an hour + drive each time I saw her. No other acupuncturist I’ve seen has started with these points and… I think they are a big deal in my body. It’s kind of neat to notice after 10 years of acupuncture that certain points do seem to make a bigger difference than others. The one in between my eyes, in my eyebrow. Lots of points on top of my head. These things seem to help remove the layer of frantic “I have to claw my skin off to get away from myself” feeling. That’s something I should pay more attention to. So far I like the second lady here more than the first. I am going to meet the whole damn practice though. It just seems wise right now.
Sciatica is a bitch and I’m pissed off about how much this hurts.
Noah hypnotized me to sleep last night and I got a solid 9 hours of sleep. I haven’t been able to sleep that much in a night in a while. It feels good.
I’m trying really hard to think about Sarah’s words: I contribute to the problems in my marriage but I don’t create all of them. They aren’t all my fault.
Noah and I didn’t arrive wanting a low-key, easy-going marriage. Neither of us wanted to just kind of hang out with someone as they lived their life. We both went seeking intensity. And holy shit we found it.
We’ve been talking about bigger patterns in our marriage. How much were the early years influenced by the rape scene 3 months after we got married? How much of my belief that I don’t deserve to have my cunt stop hurting is exacerbated by fear or anxiety about my entire right to exist? How much do I say yes because saying no and being forced hurts so much more? That’s real.
I’m not saying I actually believe that Noah will rape me left and right. The one thing that happened was the result of very poor negotiation on both of our parts. I have learned some harsh lessons. I will never again in my entire fucking life make the promise that I will accept a fresh new trauma on someone else’s timeline. I should never have said he got to surprise me with a fucktastically over the top intense scene. Then he picked a tremendously shitty already traumatizing day. That has consequences that reverberate for a long time.
But I have not really tried to advocate for myself. I have. But I haven’t been good at it in the moment. I’m great at Monday morning quarterbacking and coming through and writing impressively long screeds about what I want.
In the moment if I feel scared I put my head down and I say nothing because being forced once you say no hurts so much.
Sometimes I feel very scared that the way I managed to stop being raped was I just… stopped… saying… no.
That’s not fair but it is part of my emotional experience of life. I had more than 20 years of steady, irregular rapes. If you can go through that and not be paranoid you are a better person than I. Go somewhere else to feel all smug and proud of yourself, m’kay?
Recently Noah admitted out loud that even though he has given lip service to being open to alternative sex stuff (not PIV) he has… never really been open and he acknowledges that his body language has been very off-putting on the topic.
I’M NOT GOD DAMN HALLUCINATING.
I’m so grateful he was willing to say that out loud to me. That has been real. I have been willing to try for years and he hasn’t been and this isn’t something I feel confident about so I don’t have the ability to force this through on my own. I need someone who is interested in non PIV intimacy or I can’t insist.
There were more than ten years where non-PIV just “didn’t count” and that’s been incredibly hard for me. So yeah. I finally hit a wall and did whatever the fuck I god damn could to increase my capacity for accepting PIV and that blew up too.
During that period where I was out dating Noah and I had more sex than we’ve had since the first year of marriage. It did work.
But it felt tainted to him and he didn’t want it like that. Ok.
I can do the hypersexual thing. But there is a very high cost. There is a cost physically and there is a cost emotionally… and Noah really isn’t interested in dealing with the consequences of either and I am not capable of managing them off-screen.
Noah and I both showed up as highly scattered, dysregulated people. We have turned to one another and said, “Ok, provide stability and consistency.” It’s kind of a cruel expectation we have of one another. Neither of us are naturally consistent people. But Noah has his elaborate systems of checks he has put in place and I have my extensive systems and we’ve managed to mostly get the trains to run on time. Our children will not experience us as highly scattered, dysregulated people. They think there is a normal with interruptions. That’s… way the fuck better than I expected from us.
We’ve both been much more successful at this aspect than anyone had a right to expect of us given where we started.
It is hard for me that Noah tells me that I haven’t created a safe enough space for him to share how he feels about things. This is hard in part because Noah doesn’t exactly always make it easy for me and that’s not a good enough excuse for me to just shut down. I’m expected to keep sharing even when it is hard and it is frustrating for me that there is a double standard. I am intermittent in how easy or hard I make it to share feelings. I know that sucks. But making a safe container for you isn’t my whole life and expecting me to make it my whole life would require a dramatic restructuring of our priorities and… that’s not really on the agenda. Which means that you need to god damn share even when it’s not that easy. Or you can’t expect me to care what you feel because I don’t god damn know.
It is hard that Noah’s sexual shame is running into mine with all the speed of a runaway train. He feels guilty and ashamed for asking for contact/to be seen as a sexual being. I feel guilty and ashamed that I am not always physically capable of participating in sex without intense pain and injury.
This is a shitty combo.
The only thing I can really say in my defense is I told Noah at the very beginning of our marriage that we were going to have big problems because I don’t really say no to things I should say no to. I CALLED IT.
It is incredibly emotionally hard that I feel like only the sex is important. The sex is the sole measure of my worth as a wife. That’s god damn killing me.
Only it’s not like I’m allowed to ignore Noah the rest of the time and focus on filling my cup so that I can show up for that bit. I’m supposed to lavish attention and affection on him all the time. I’m supposed to be adoring as he feels clever telling me about the latest video game thing he’s on about. I’m supposed to clean and make his life just kind of appear for him. I’m supposed to bring socializing opportunities to him because it is hard for him to arrange his own stuff and he needs it psychologically. I don’t really feel like I run out of what I’m supposed to do for him but it doesn’t count.
I think if it counted I wouldn’t be as upset.
I don’t think I’m even upset about my role here. It’s fine. It’s very service oriented and that suits me. I’m upset about being expected to carry the role of a service slave but be judged solely on the merits of a sex slave. I’ve talked to a lot of people who practice consensual slavery and I’ve read a lot of books on the topic… no one call fulfill every kind of role. You figure out what you are good at and that’s what you offer.
I can’t be a full time sex slave. I have literally tried in my life and I am not physically capable of sustaining it. It is not an option for me.
I’m not saying it is evil to want a relationship where someone is exclusively focused on your sexual needs… I’m saying you have to understand that it will be a limited relationship and that person will probably not be good at folding your laundry.
Skill sets are real.
Given the totality of what Noah wants from me… it is literally not an option to have our life function that way. We would be bad parents and that’s not something that either of us are ok with picking. We are trying to figure out the balance of how much time and space is it ok for us to take for our relationship separate from the kids (and it’s about to get harder) because it is definitely ok for us to take time and space for sex… but that can’t be what our relationship is about. It takes too much time and too many spoons.
I think about what it would be like to have more energy for sex too. I don’t god damn have it.
I really did make a gorgeous back yard for outdoor sex… sigh…. BUT WHEN DO I GET TO ENJOY IT?!
Completely a side note and a switch of topics. I got frustrated with FMC last night at dinner. I was joking and I told Noah that I wasn’t sure he wanted us to have four kids anyway because he would end up with three daughters and an enby. FMC went off on me as if I had misgendered them.
I got a little shouty but I didn’t scream and I tried to bring my volume and intensity down as I went. I told kiddo that it is incredibly frustrating to me that they yell at me constantly about misgendering them EVEN WHEN I’M DOING IT RIGHT and that is not ok. I’m tired of being yelled at all the time about how wrong I am… when I’m doing it right. This isn’t fair and it is pissing me off. I DIDN’T CALL YOU A GIRL. I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE MY DAUGHTER. I SAID YOU WERE MY KID. I SAID YOU WERE OUR ENBY. STOP YELLING AT ME AS IF I DON’T KNOW WHO YOU ARE.
I get that this is a big deal. I get that being misgendered is a problem. THEN LISTEN FIRST AND FIND OUT HOW PEOPLE ARE ACTUALLY GENDERING YOU BEFORE YOU START YELLING, ALRIGHT?!?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!!
I love them with all my heart and soul and I’m grateful I get to spend every day with them. Don’t get me wrong. But sometimes even the best people can be fucking irritating.
Marriage is hard. Parenting is hard. Life is hard. And I’m playing on easy mode.
I’ve been playing the new Kesha album on repeat for a while now. Three songs in particular: Praying, Let It Go, and Rainbow I’d kind of like to go through and write explications. Not explanations. It’s a literary term. It means to go line by line through a song/poem and respond to it in terms of historical and/or personal contexts. Because gosh all three songs take me on a journey. Praying for me is about my sister. Oh. My sister’s son’s wife is pregnant. My official message to my cousin about this news is: “I hope she has an easy pregnancy, a quick delivery, and a healthy baby.” I pray they never let my sister babysit but I won’t say that part to anyone in my family.
I don’t know if my nephew is going to be able to break the chains that bind our family. I’m scared and sad. But there is nothing I can do.
I can raise my babies and keep them away from the pedophiles. That’s what I can do.
Lately the kids have hit a verbal/developmental stage where they are ready to talk about stuff that happened a few years ago that they hadn’t told me before. That’s hard. It is hard hearing about ways that I have failed to protect them because I did not know they needed the protection. I’m really grateful for some of the divorces that happen in my life because it is for the best for my children.
I am sad that my children had to watch that much fighting and screaming (I wasn’t present) and I’m sorry that my children had to deal with a caregiver who would threaten to hit them if they didn’t behave. I wish I had known.
The clarion call of useless parents everywhere. Fuck.
If my children saw more fighting in that house in a couple of years of occasional visits than they’ve seen in their entire life in our house… that divorce needed to happen.
No wonder all four kids came over here and wanted to act out intense domestic violence scenes with horrible divorces. I would listen quite carefully as this happened… but it was a game and they never actually hit anyone so I didn’t stop the process. They had big feelings to work out.
We are all trying to manage our own baggage.
When we go through periods where Noah feels less adored… he shuts me out. And it’s not his fault that his “I’m defending myself because you are a bitch” face looks so much like my brother Tommy. I’m familiar with that glare. It is very hard for me to continue to try to be present and giving and loving when someone looks at me like that. But he’s entitled to facial expressions.
Am I entitled to act like I see the facial expressions? This is all so confusing.
And my sweet girl wants some attention. I should go do that.