Category Archives: abuse

On busses and hurricanes

Yesterday I had a visit with the pain management doctor. It was a brief check in. It did not quite go how I expected on a few levels. He’s very interested in the totality of my health so he asks a lot of questions about my mental health. I was blunt in saying that I’ve been very depressed. He got really intense and asked me what is going on?

I told him that my husband and I are in a rough spot in our sex life. That things have been rocky on and off in that department from the beginning because I am so fucked up.

I started crying.

The doctor did this thing where he swelled like a lizard trying to intimidate a predator. He started saying with great emphasis, “YOU ARE NOT TO BLAME FOR ANY OF THIS. THAT’S NOT OK. BAD PEOPLE DID BAD THINGS TO YOU. YOU BEAR NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THESE RESULTS.”

He tried to present a metaphor to me about who is responsible for sexual health and that kind of failed when I rattled off loudly and emphatically that if you don’t ask someone’s STD status and you choose to not wear a condom… you kind of deserve what you get. He didn’t think I would feel like that at all.

He decided to switch gears and explain this a different way since I wouldn’t go along with his beliefs about sexual responsibility.

He said, “Ok fine. Imagine you are a bus. Your responsibility in this life is to drive the bus and stay on the road. Well guess what? Your bus happens to be going through a hurricane. The hurricane isn’t your fault. The hurricane is what other people have chosen to do to you and there is nothing you can do about it. You just have to stay on the road. That’s your task. You can’t control how hard the winds buffet you and you can’t control how much debris whacks the outside of the bus and you can’t control if pieces fly off the bus because of outside elements attacking your bus. Ok, you with me? Ok. Here’s my point: YOU KEPT THE BUS ON THE FUCKING ROAD NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU.”

He then asked me if I had disclosed about my background before I married Noah, essentially… was I allowing him to have full consent when he married a crazy person. I said oh yes. I told him all about my fucked up history and mental illness and my issues. I mean, as best as I could.

He said, “Then it is your husband’s fucking fault he married you and he NEVER GETS TO BITCH ABOUT YOU HAVING PROBLEMS.”

I felt… completely stunned. I was sobbing at this point. I don’t think I have ever in my life had a doctor explode and swear at me so much. That was fairly shocking. Holy tomato. I mean, I swear… but doctors don’t usually swear back.

He told me that he has trauma in his background… not like mine but really severe trauma of a slightly different kind. He looked rather haunted when he referenced it. He did that brief almost hollowed out looking thing that people do when they think back to the ghosts that haunt them.

He told me that it isn’t ok for people to be angry with us for coping with what was done to us by bad people. If we react in a bad way at some time… it’s not our fault. We are doing our best to cope with what has been thrown at us and no one gets to judge us for this.

I told him that being married to a mentally ill person is very rough even if no one is to blame. He glowered and said that even if it is rough they don’t get to bitch. This is what they signed on for.

I just… kind of stopped arguing and kept crying. Because goodness. I don’t agree that mentally ill people are never to be held responsible for their behavior. That’s fucked up.

But Sarah’s probably right and I’m taking on a bullshit level of responsibility here.

I came home last night and told Noah that I’ve been having the thought process that… I didn’t cause the shame he feels about his sexuality. But I did fail to heal it and that was something he dearly wanted our marriage to accomplish. And I feel like there is some element where he is very upset with me for failing to fix that. But I can’t. That’s not in me to fix. That’s not about me, not really. That’s not even about how often I fuck him. That’s bigger than me. That’s bigger than me having physical problems.

If we could both get past feeling so bad about ourselves… it wouldn’t be a big deal if he wanted to masturbate with/near me when my cunt is not up for sex. I like mutual masturbation a lot. I think it’s a great game. And frankly… when I know I’m really not expected to take my pants off I have a lot of fun playing with a cock. They are neat. That’s not something I react negatively to. When I feel I really don’t have to take my pants off.

But that’s the rub. I self impose this feeling that I’m bad if I don’t escalate the sex as quickly as possible.

The pressure doesn’t come mostly from Noah. It is about what I feel is mandatory.

And given that we have records going back to day one of our marriage… I think we can count on our fingers how many months we have skipped sex in 11 years (including that 6 month road trip). There is no case whatsoever for sexual withholding. That is just literally not happening. We don’t have sex 2-3 times a day like Noah would prefer… but Jesus H Christ on toast.

Most bad months we still have sex 2-4 times.

Noah has genuinely never had to cope with a real drought. The longest periods of celibacy we have experienced are immediately post-partum and if you want to complain about that I get to beat you until you are black and blue because MY GOD DAMN CUNT WAS RIPPED APART AND YOU ARE A STUPID SELFISH PIECE OF SHIT IF YOU DON’T FUCKING CARE.

That’s the one time in my life that I will defend my pussy like a god damn honey badger. You don’t get to complain that my cunt isn’t performing well enough right after I give birth. Fuck you all the way to hell and back. NOT OK.

I know women who were not ok with having their cunt touched for a god damn year. I wait like 3 months.

No bitching about my post partum recovery time. Ever. Ever. Ever. Ever. Ever. Ever. (Not that Noah has ever complained. He was willing to try when the doctor gave us the go ahead with the first kid and I declared it a failed attempt and made him stop and he was patient until I was ready to try again. He did not ask to try so early the second time. Noah actually did just fine in this department. So my ranting is at the generic universe and isn’t about him.)

Yesterday when I was talking to my various medical people (acupuncture, pain doctor, and sleep people in one day) and they asked me about how my marriage is going… I was conscious of how much of a problem it was that my former shrink thought Noah could do no god damn wrong and I needed to always compromise in his favor. I said, “He’s a good husband but he’s a person so he screws up sometimes.” That got nods and acceptance. That’s a much more fucking realistic picture of him.

He is a good husband. But he’s a human being so he fucks up sometimes. That’s not the end of the world. I don’t reject people out of hand for fucking up sometimes. That’s life.

But sometimes I cope very poorly with the set of skills I have within me. I cope in ways that hurt me and people around me because I don’t have a better way of handling what is happening to me. Sometimes all the ways I have to cope seem to fail and I feel like I need the big guns and those are never fucking pleasant to be around.

I don’t always cope in nice ways that make other people feel comfy and happy. Sometimes I just keep the fucking bus on the road and that’s the god damn best I can do.

The doctor got really quiet and intense near the end of the appointment. He looked at me for a long minute or so. He said, “I hope you understand how impressive it is that you are still here. The problems you cause by being here are nothing to compare to the miracle of your presence. Most people would die if they went through the size of hurricane you went through. You may not always be convenient, but it’s not your fault and I’m really glad you are here.”

I don’t know that I’ve ever had a non-psych doctor make me cry like that. That was so intense.

Moving the needle

I’m trying to figure out how to get things to improve in my marriage. I’m tired. I’m sad. I’m scared. At this point we are most of the way through arguing about all of our done-me-wrongs over the last ten years. There’s been an absolute fuck ton of arguing this year.

I don’t know about you, but I have let a lot of things slide over ten years because I didn’t want to argue. Then when things kinda hit a boil… everything comes out. We’ve had little and big problems that I’ve bit my tongue and la-la-la ignored. I’m not so sure it was useful.

At some point last night I realized that we have fairly equivalent lists of “you did _____” for one another. So we have hit the point where we have fairly well hashed out the problems and we are getting to… we have to forgive to move on.

Fuck.

I both am and am not a forgiving person. There are lots of things that I don’t really forgive. Lots. Shit dude, I cut off my family. There are things I won’t forgive. But I don’t think Noah has done anything that heinous. Everything that has been hurtful has individually not been over my threshold, but collectively… oh that’s harder.

But I want him to forgive me. Damnit.

I did something, well said, something horribly awful this year. I screamed at Noah that I wished he would die. I didn’t mean it and in less than five minutes I was crying and apologizing and saying I wanted to take it back.

I don’t have a high horse for sitting on here. I don’t think I have been less hurtful than Noah. I have been differently hurtful at different times… but I have been a horrible person. I’m really not denying that.

If we are going to move forward we have to forgive.

Oh fuck.

One of the biggest problems we are dealing with isn’t really Noah’s fault but he’s done some awful things because of it. Me saying no. I don’t really speak up when things make me uncomfortable all that well. My early life taught me that life is uncomfortable. Full stop. Speaking up about it just means people punish you for not complying faster because my comfort is irrelevant.

This is creating problems. I have done a lot of things while feeling wildly uncomfortable because I don’t react to that feeling as if I have any right to be defended. So I put myself in situations where I don’t believe I can say no and I do it over and over.

Sex. Oh sex is a fucking mess. Well, our sex life has been better between us lately than it has been in years. Which is fascinating given how much we are fighting. I feel like everything is my fault. I’m not sure it is but I feel like it.

How are we going to learn to have boundaries around “us” as a collective instead of maintaining individual boundaries and I’m supposed to learn to speak up more, and earlier, when I’m uncomfortable? I really don’t know. Yes, unicorn hunting is hard but both of us completely flip out when the other goes off to play alone.

It is both of us.

I feel really ashamed of how strongly I react to Noah playing separately, which is kind of funny because his reaction isn’t… that much less intense. Not really. It feels like imminent death for both of us. So why do I need to feel ashamed of that feeling?

Because I feel like I’ve been exposed to poly for my entire adult life WHY HAVEN’T I MATURED PAST BEING AN INSECURE TWAT WAFFLE? It isn’t lack of effort or time. I just… I’m just so insecure that it’s ridiculous. It isn’t Noah’s fault, not even a little bit. If anything were going to make me feel secure it is Noah’s behavior in aggregate.

Yet here I am. Feeling like I really should jump off a bridge so that Noah has more space in his life to replace me with someone who is less of a colossal loser. He doesn’t want that. Not even a little. But it is very much how I feel. He… doesn’t feel that differently about me dating.

Why do I feel so ashamed of having the same feelings he has?

Because I believe I am supposed to feel supportive. I believe I am supposed to be willing to support him finding every scrap of happiness he can in this life. That’s what a good wife/partner would do.

I am not a good wife. I am small, selfish, insecure, and so very sad.

Do you know what is incredibly fucking complicated? The fact that… we don’t really have many platonic friends. If we are going to be controlling as fuck about one another, how do we handle the fact that we are mostly only friends with old lovers/play partners? It is hard. We both have a habit of acting like people on our side aren’t as threatening as people on the other persons side.

I was listing off the people I feel closest to… all of them I’ve been intimate with. I haven’t had SEX with all of them. But I’ve been intimate. I like crossing boundaries with people. I like bonding.

After this year I wouldn’t be surprised if none of our friends ever want to play or have sex with us again. Oh the drama.

Noah is right that I can’t ever have sexual contact with someone again without his consent. I ignored his no this year. I can’t do that again.

That’s a mistake I get to make once this lifetime.

Last night’s conversation hurt a lot. But I feel like we got closer to understanding, “I did x because y.”

We really are getting to the point where the only step left is forgiveness. If we want to move forward, and shit we are talking about another god damn kid, we have to forgive. What does that look like? What does that mean?

It means tearing up the tally marks for who has done what wrong to whom. That’s pretty scary.

I know I have behaved abusively in the last ten years. I believe there have been times when Noah has too. Should we be carefully keeping lists of documentation so that we can hurt each other as much as possible with these actions? Is this how abuse is normalized and tolerated and excused on a wide spread basis?

There are lots of kinds and types of abuse. Our marriage has not included the deal breakers I experienced early in my life. We both abuse in the ways we do rarely and only after a lot of pressure builds up that we haven’t figured out healthier ways to manage. Does that excuse it? No. I don’t know what to do.

Noah is right that in order to know what is going on with me, sometimes he has to listen to venom and sort through it for the truth. That really sucks. But there are a lot of things I just can’t talk about until I am so angry I am almost frothing at the mouth.

In arguments Noah keeps saying, “You knew it was hurting me and you wouldn’t stop.” But I have stopped. I stopped months ago. I have not continued leading people on in conversation. I’m not making promises I can’t keep with other people. I certainly haven’t been on a date recently. I did stop. I just didn’t stop on a dime the way he wanted me to. Something is going on currently that I feel will do a lot to decide how we move forward. If boundaries can be expressed in a way that actually supports our marriage going forward… that’s going to be a big deal. If I feel that it isn’t managed well…

I’m scared. I’m bitter. I’m frustrated and angry.

I work all the god damn time and I really don’t have much in my life that is about letting off steam. Most of my work demands that I project happiness and cheer whether I feel it or not. I don’t show my emotional range to my kids much because I don’t think it would be very fair. I’m a god damn roller coaster and they don’t need to be on the trip with me. So I shove my feelings in a box and I smile and I keep my voice pretty calm and level. Are there cracks in my armor? Sure. I’m not perfect. But my kids seem to genuinely not understand how upset I get and how often.

I am a very good liar.

I spend a lot of time hugging and snuggling when I would like to be shoving my head through a window. When I would like to be raging and crying and cutting myself up. I pretend that I enjoy being a loving mother instead.

How in the fuck am I supposed to learn to care about being uncomfortable when pretty much my whole life is set up around, “It doesn’t matter how you feel it matters how you support the people around you.”

I honestly don’t want as much physical contact with my kids as they want with me. It feels alienating and hurtful. Partly because I am so jealous I didn’t get it that I feel like I am going to burst into flames. My needs didn’t matter. Why in the mother fuck are yours so god damn important?

Why is everyone more important than me?

I’m supposed to make other people feel comfortable. It doesn’t matter if I’m sitting there thinking about the various pitfalls of ways to kill myself.

I don’t matter.

But Noah has built a life around how much I matter to him. I am seriously impressed with the amount of work he has put in to being a good partner. It’s a lot of why I feel he deserves someone better. Someone who can meet him halfway honestly instead of with a forced smile.

It isn’t that I don’t love Noah. It is that I spend so much time shoving down how uncomfortable I feel that there is often not room for authentic emotions near the surface. I have to have a layer of pretense over everything in order to cope.

This is how I have survived. This is how I have accomplished as much as I have. I pretend that how I feel doesn’t matter even a little bit, I put my head down, and I work.

A lot of my work is consciously projecting emotions I don’t feel: happiness, comfort, feeling secure. Because I am so good at pretending I feel these things I’m very good at helping other people feel this way. From what I understand from the people I weirdly interrogate: their feelings seem to be more authentic than mine.

Uhm I guess that’s good. I can pretend to be ok and help other people feel actually ok.

It all comes down to how I actually feel is irrelevant.

As a result I hurt and hurt and hurt and hurt.

It’s been a bad year in pretty much every way. Well, the cruise was lovely. We made promises for the next decade of our life that we need to figure out how to keep.

Otherwise 2016 has been overwhelmingly shitty. I’m so god damn over this remodel I could scream and never stop. Today they finish the initial drywall installation in the bathroom. They have finished the stucco outside. They will be here till January at least. We have a hearing in January and doing work communicating with the lawyer saps my will to live. It feels so mentally taxing and draining.

In retrospect… I’ve done an amount of work this year that I probably shouldn’t have been able to get done. I’m so tired.

I’m on the verge of collapse.

And I don’t really know what feeds me at this point. From where am I drawing energy? From the clear blue sky and I don’t god damn know how much longer I can continue.

I miss socializing. I miss my friends. I miss community. I don’t in any way shape or form have the ability to do more of it right now. Because as much as I get something back from that there is also a cost associated and right now I can’t pay.

We haven’t even been inviting people over to dinner much. I just can’t.

I have felt existentially lonely for a long time. The road trip was really hard in this way.

Noah desperately wants to be enough all by himself for me. But Noah has a lot on his plate. I can’t ask for any more of Noah. It isn’t fair or appropriate or ok. So I feel like I have spent a lot of time trying to make myself smaller. So that what Noah has to spare is enough.

I’m hurting so much.

I feel like a real schmuck in our conversations sometimes. I know he has made enormous leaps of progress in the past year since we’ve been back from the road trip. He is organized and efficient and he’s trying so god damn hard. The trouble is I have a back log of hurt and frustration and need and sadness and I don’t know how to deal with it. If I weren’t dealing with years of hurt… would this be enough? I don’t know. It is closer to enough than it ever has been before. But I don’t know how to evaluate it given how much I’m flailing.

I feel like I’m reaching the part where I’m genuinely in a family and I genuinely need to figure out the coping skills for forgiving and staying that other people have. I’ve never developed these skills. They have never been relevant to my life.

I need to stop making Noah cry. I don’t place it as a goal that I will feel happy. But I need to stop making Noah cry. Because Noah having a minimum bar of ok is more important than me being happy.

And this is how things fuck up. This is how I build up backlogs of things that hurt me until I explode. Because I don’t think I am important enough to deserve support on the smaller stuff. There is just so much that makes me uncomfortable that I really don’t believe I have the right to ask for consideration. It would be a job and not a fun one.

I’m not sure how forgiveness ties in to being able to respect or like myself. Can I forgive if I think I deserve the bad treatment? If I think it will never stop because it is just that I receive it?

My heart and my head and my stomach hurt. I feel physically sick and I don’t think it is illness. I think it is sadness. I think it is the feeling that I matter so fucking little. I feel worthless and pointless and stupid. I feel like I should die.

I feel like death is the only route to stop hurting. Life is pain.

Forgive. I have carved forgive on my body in more than one place because I feel like if there is a lesson I am supposed to learn in this lifetime it is how to forgive. But am I forgiving Noah or am I forgiving myself? I sorta feel like I will not ever be able to forgive anyone else, not really, until I forgive myself.

Forgive myself for being petty and weak and insecure and so very damaged by the experiences I’ve had. How do I forgive myself for not being whole when I have never been whole and I don’t really even understand what that might be like?

I feel so very sad. And my arms hurt like a motherfucker. I need to stop.

Forgiveness

Noah wrote me one of those epic blog posts he writes to me. Noah is of the belief that if we had public back and forth about our issues it would go badly. Given that I write publicly… he writes to me. I worry about this dynamic.

He’s bringing a lot of reality into this relationship. What the ever loving fuck. He accurately catalogues some of the problems we have had over the years and says that it is less about forgiving me for these ways in which I have fucked up and more about exalting that no matter how big the bump we always find a way past it.

That’s… that’s deep, yo.

I’ve fucked up a lot. I have done some pretty awful things. Some of the things are ongoing problems and some of them were problems for a while and then I stopped.

Just like some of the ways in which Noah has fucked up are ongoing and some of them are stopped. But I have not been giving him a lot of credit for change and growth. I have been acting like every problem, every fuck up is about an escalating pattern. Is it?

I come from a background of domestic violence. I literally spent my childhood moving every few months because my mother was running from a man who beat and raped her children.

Am I capable of looking at fuck ups and not wondering about the escalation potential?

Noah does not beat nor rape my children. I feel completely comfortable saying that. My children exhibit no stress signs of hidden trauma. I watch for it. My friends watch for it. My neighbors even watch for it because I’ve talked to many of them about my background and family history and I’ve flat asked to be monitored.

“I don’t know what healthy actually means. I’m trying to learn. I need feedback so I’d appreciate it if you commented when you see me doing something that might hurt my kids.”

People are always fairly stunned by this request, but they honor it. People call me on my shit.

I have all the potential in the world to be a monster.

So does Noah.

What does potential mean?

I don’t think I am a monster at this stage. Or maybe, I’m a monster kinda like the BFG is a monster. Are you a monster because you are in a category with other monsters based on demographic factors but you don’t enact monstrous behavior yourself?

Noah wants me to not forgive him but instead exalt him for getting past many of the ways he has hurt me. I get why he wants that. I get why it is important for the story arc. Given that we are fresh on the heels of several straight months of me being the problem and me hurting him far more than he hurt me… I get it.

2016 will go down as one of the years when I hurt Noah the most for our entire marriage. Was it worth it?

I don’t know.

If I had to do that in order to really force through the idea that I will never grit my teeth and take one for the team again? Yes.

Yes. A million times yes.

Noah may want me to not forgive and instead exalt that we got past our issues, then I need 2016 to be the last year I ever submit to sex that hurts me in a bad way. I’ve been having sex that caused me intense physical pain for more than 30 years. I’m done. If I had to blow the fuck up to convince the people around me that I’m done done done done done I can live with that.

Does that make it good or fair or right to blow up like that? Not really.

Sometimes there aren’t right choices.

I know that means I will have to change behaviors on my end as well as figuring out how to keep coaxing behavior from Noah that will work better. That will be really hard.

I’m off the team. I can’t ever take one for the team like that again. Whatever service of that kind I owed in this lifetime I have paid. I have paid and paid and paid and paid. I’m out of currency with which to pay.

My cunt is mine and I need it to not be treated like something that anyone has a right to use no matter how much pain they cause me.

I understand that a lot of this has happened because I “let” it happen. Because I was conditioned from toddlerhood that this was my lot in life so I encouraged and allowed this kind of behavior. Yeah yeah, it’s my fault. I know.

If we go seek out people to hurt us and they hurt us is it their fault or our fault? I don’t entirely know.

Exalting. I should exalt that Noah has gotten to the point when he can recognize that I am engaging in bdsm as self harm he stops participating.

Really if I want to talk about the things Noah has worked on to be better at being my partner… I won’t stop talking for a few weeks.

I know.

I know.

White trash

I don’t know about you, but I am a social animal. I am so social that for many years I put myself in position after position to be abused because that was the only way I could understand social contact. I expected abuse. I would go so far as to say that I actively sought it out and tried to bring it into my life.

Abuse is… abuse is dramatic and exciting and volatile in a way I expected and needed from life. I went from periods of extreme isolation–the kind that is proven in prisons and mental hospitals and orphanages to cause extreme breaks in the mind–to periods of needing social contact so bad I would seek out the most extreme sorts I could find.

Is it my fault I was abused? Let us say that if abuse is a dance I was not always an unwilling partner.

Most of the men who raped me as an adult were people I wanted to have in my life. They were mostly people with whom I was eager to have sex. But I required a condom for my protection and theirs. I am one of the scariest vectors of potential disease in my community. The other trampiest people usually are around half my numbers. I default to safe choices because I love the people I sleep with and I need to consider their health.

I am thinking about this right now in context of how weird life is.

What does it mean to be treated like trash? It means that your life is not important. You are replaceable. You are just here to (be a hole/fill a role/do a piece of work) and when your usefulness is over you will be replaced.

I have dated more than one person who has shown me a series of photos from their past and all the women look the same and there are pictures of them doing the exact same thing… sometimes in the same clothing.

My family didn’t want me and made that clear. I’ve… been the fill in the blank woman.

I am hard because if I don’t maintain myself to a certain level so that I can find a different position somewhere else where I can be a differently effective tool…. Well this is the closest I have to a survival instinct. I still have work in me. Don’t throw me away yet. I know I’m not that shiny. I know I’m bent and deformed and prickly about how I am used… but I have value. Please need to have me around.

It has been fascinating over the last few weeks to have the din of self hatred in my head be gone. Worthless isn’t coursing through my neurons anymore. See, drugs aren’t all bad. I see much more clearly the various ways in which I am useful.

did get to grow up and be Mary Poppins. Only they are my children. Children do think their parents are perfect. Mine can now joke about knowing that I mess up and knowing that I’m not perfect… but they still express shock every time they witness a demonstration because in their heart I am perfect.

Holy shit.

I really like being a parent. I am grateful I get to be a parent with time and enough money and a secure place to live. We know a large majority of our neighborhood and they express happiness for our presence in the neighborhood.

I was given a tea plant for my birthday because I am nice to my neighbors. I feel like I have done something with the time I’ve had here.

I know that I was treated like I was disposable because now I have felt what it means to be treated like I have intense value. I know that my ability to have had the life I’ve had has largely been because of the color of my skin because I live in a racist system that will give a second chance to a piece of trash if it can pass into the main group without being visibly different.

I may be a bunch of weird things… but I don’t by and large look it. I look like I have been middle class or higher most of my life. I can code switch my language and sound knowledgable around a freakish variety of people.

I’m not treated like I’m disposable anymore. It is an odd experience.

It is odd knowing that I am raising children who have never had a single moment of feeling disposable. How can more people get to their level of safety? What about the kids who are growing up like me? How can they be seen more? I don’t know. But feeling a quietness inside my head makes me want to work a lot harder to find people who need help dealing with incest.

Once I grow up. Once I can actually have more of an idea what the stages of development feel like. I need to know what they mean for me so that I can hear what they mean for other people without interrupting. If I’m still trying to get to where they are… I will be self focused when I listen. It is part of my ability to be patient with children and not with adults who are older than me. I have a hard time being nice when I think someone “should” be better at something than me because they’ve had more time to practice. I am finally to the point where I am not a total asshole about t his because I’ve noticed that people are always asynchronous in their learning. Not knowing something is more normal than not. Just be glad they are trying to learn now.

But I’m impatient and an asshole so being nice is a challenge. When my friends are being kind they say I don’t suffer fools gladly.

I am feeling grateful for what I get to do with my house. I’m also feeling very narcissistic. Other people don’t demand turning their entire house into a lived art experience. But I am. I have had a kind of luck most people don’t get to have. I did figure out how to stop feeling like I deserved abuse and I have ended every relationship that was hurting me.

I may be impatient and chafe at boundaries in my life but by and large I have chosen them. I may have to figure out how to renegotiate some corners of the boundaries… I have really sucked at doing that this year. I have made a number of mistakes I need to make once.

What will the future look like? I don’t know. But I know it is from a perspective of not being even a little bit disposable. Really I am the linchpin. If I go the whole mechanism will break. Or really it will depend how I go.

I chose to bring children into the world knowing that I come from a whole many generations of intense abuse/mental health problems dna pool. I knew that the brain is malleable. I knew that as much as there are genetic predispositions but nurture matters too.

I’m not perfect. I’m not really supposed to be. I’m trying to show what it means to be good enough given the strictures of the world we live in. How do we go about changing this world? There are processes. Let’s talk about them.

What can we do to help other people know that they are not disposable either?

It’s a big hard topic. It’s going to take a lot of years to unpack. I need to think about it as I grow up. Growing up hurts. But if I want to be able to think about other people properly… I have to.

No real time…

But I want to point out that I got through Suicide Tuesday Friday without feeling drop or depression or a reversion to suicidal ideation. (For those of you who haven’t spent years doing drugs, MDMA is a drug that causes a massive surge in serotonin. If you have a massive surge of serotonin… you will have a corollary time when you will have a decrease in serotonin. This is known in rave circles as Suicide Tuesday assuming you did your trip on a Saturday.)

I’m having big feelings this morning because I got to do a walk through Noah’s brain that makes me feel sad, but not in a way that makes me feel worthless and like I should die.

I feel sad that Noah genuinely believes that he isn’t allowed to have friends because if he were honest about our relationship anyone/everyone would tell him to get the fuck out of our marriage because I am so horrible.

That’s… that’s a real problem. I don’t know what to do about it. Am I really as bad as all that? He thinks so. And that means it is true enough.

If I’m sitting with this and I don’t feel like I should off myself… that’s progress.

Now that it’s done…

I’ll talk about it. But posting “I’m about to go do something basically illegal” is silly. Instead, write about it after the fact. Ahem.

Err, this is why I wanted three days of complete sobriety. To make it so the experience was more intense. No pot, alcohol, or caffeine. Wheeeeeeee.

So I managed to turn up a therapist who does guided MDMA journeys. It’s one of those things that is talked about in PTSD circles. You can do years of processing work in an afternoon. After 33 fucking years of therapy I could use some god damn short cuts.

It was… much less intense than I’m used to. I think he gave me a low dose.

It was good though. I stepped out of my box and talked about a lot of developmental trauma stuff. (It helped that I’ve been rereading the Healing Developmental Trauma book…) We talked a lot about some of my core wounding stuff. The shit that just doesn’t heal. We talked about volition, consent, responsibility, shame, and all those other awesome things.

I talked a lot about the rape I committed when I was a kid. I talked a lot about my brother and my dad’s suicides. I talked about my internal core lack of worth. Recent studies show that the fact that I was the product of rape, my mother seriously contemplated aborting me, and I wasn’t loved much once I arrived… that’s really enough to create that worthless feeling forever.

But! Brains are plastic! They can change.

You just have to work both hard and smart to figure out how the fuck to change it. It’s complicated as fuck.

I feel… like maybe some of it budged today. We talked a lot about my children in context of my experiences. I literally can’t imagine my children forcing oral sex on other children at five. That’s a taught behavior.

My father taught me. I was doing my best to be good. I’m not evil because I had an evil father who taught me things I shouldn’t have been taught. I have been fucking scrupulous about consent for a lot of years now and that is unlikely to change.

I am not a serial rapist. My father was. I am not.

I may be a monster, but I have my limits. I do not want to destroy another person’s soul.

Yes I fucked up really really bad and there were consequences. A little boy was hurt. But I was five. Five year olds… can’t be held to the same standard as an adult. I say that as someone who has been privileged to see a number of five year olds over the last few years. None of them, even if they did something so horrible, would be to blame. The person who taught them to do that would be to blame.

If I had done it again at 15 or worse yet at 25 this would be a different conversation.

I was five.

It isn’t my fault I was born. I did not choose to punish my mother with my birth. That’s not how it works. I did not rape my mother. My father did.

Maybe it’s ok that I was born. I was the only person who was willing to stop my father from raping more people. Not a single other person was going to step up and do that.

Maybe I’m not so bad.

I did the right thing. Even though it hurt. Even though there were consequences. I had to do it. I really did.

We talked about how there is no such thing as “the best mom” because every child has different needs… but I’m a good mom. I’m responsive to my children. I have put a lot of my mental health problems into cabinets and drawers and I god damn show up for my kids. Even when it hurts and I want to dissociate and hide. Even when I feel depressed. Even when I feel anxious. I stomp my shit, explain that my tone of voice will suck because I’m having a rough day, and I fucking show up.

I’m too privileged not to. In my opinion. I have so much support. I can’t let my support down by being a bad mom. I need to be worthy of this life I find myself in the middle of. My children and my husband act like I am good. I am blessed beyond measure.

I have the kind of family that many people dream about and never get. That has to count for something. It didn’t happen by accident. I made this. I made this home. Noah supplied the house. I made it a home for my family. I made these little people and I’ve managed to care about their needs for years and years and  years. Eight years and counting of doing the work.

Pieces of shit don’t do that.

I’m not 100% down yet (halo is niiiiiiice) but we’ll see how I feel over the next few days. We’ll see how this sticks.

I just feel slow, not hungry, and kind of at a distance still. I don’t hear any of the voices in my head that hate me.

I’ll take any break I can get.

Gaslighting

If I’m going to get screamed at this many times over a behavior I should write it down. Noah has been consistently bringing up the fact that my words and my behavior have not matched up for months. I will say that I am going to do something then not do it. I will say I won’t do something then I do it.

He says I am being deceitful in the blog and in doing so I am creating a situation in which he cannot honestly ask anyone for help. He cannot talk to any of our mutual friends because of the fallout I will experience when he reveals how abusive I am.

I think that if he believes that, and given how many times it has been screamed at me in the past few months I believe he sincerely believes it…. he needs to get some god damn support.

I am an abusive nightmare who is taking what he has to offer in life and then spurning him. He is honestly giving all of himself and I hit a wall and I fucking stopped reciprocating.

If you want to know what I’m doing, maybe I can get access to his notes and copy them. God knows he isn’t going to fucking talk about anything. But he’s taking extensive notes about everything I’m doing wrong. Because his memory gets fuzzy otherwise and he wants to very specifically remember every detail.

It makes me think I should have started taking serious notes on my done me wrong list fucking years ago.

Instead I get to be the piece of shit who has done everything wrong.

What have I lied about? Oh I said I’d use gloves when someone fingered me and the next person who fingered me didn’t use them and I didn’t interrupt him. I said I would look only for folks who wanted group play and then the next person I talked to and have pushed to keep in my life is anti group play. I said that I wanted to cheat. Not that I was going to, but that I wanted to.

I am a piece of shit because the only thing that gets through my head, when Noah tries to explain how much I am hurting him, is for him to say, “Fine then I’m dating too.”

I take that as a punishment and step down. Not a lot less gets through to me.

On many occasions over the past six months I have said that I wouldn’t schedule with new people and then I did so.

I said I wasn’t hunting on okcupid while I was continuing to flirt and add people in other areas of conversing.

Noah says that something is happening then I say it isn’t then he gives examples and I proceed blithely to ignore him and minimize. Apparently this has been a severe constant long term problem over the last six months and he is fucking dying to tell me again about every single example.

He’d like to keep me up screaming about this for fucking days. But he won’t talk to anyone else and get support. That would be disloyal.

Now I asked for examples so I’m a bully for asking and saying that he’s screaming about it. One more way in which I’m a piece of shit.

Let’s keep going, shall we?

It is really hard for Noah that I deny my behavior. I’m not denying it. I’m a lying piece of shit.

He says this is exactly like me having a drinking problem. I’m a compulsive liar. “Me just seeing that this exists causes you to fly into a rage repeatedly.”

On Wednesday and Thursday I was still abusing him. I do not track this honestly in his mind. On Wednesday I got angry while he was going down on me because I hit a point where I realized that I was doing this Slut Month in a way that was only catering to him and what he wants. I should not have gotten angry about that.

I can’t type as fast as he is rattling this off.

I fly into rages when he confronts me with my behavior. He pointed out on Thursday that all the group play is with people I want to play with and I got pissy. I was fucking nasty as I said it really sucks that I want to play with people who want to get me off.

I’ve spent ten years not writing down every time I was told “Oh I’ll get better at foreplay” only to be fucked dry like a god damn fleshlight two days later.

Maybe I should be keeping better notes about the ways in which what I am told and what I get don’t god damn match up.

And he can’t tell anyone what I’m doing. Because if he does then someone might get mad at me and then they might shame me. So he can’t ask for support. Because I am so fucking abusive that our friends would rain down fire telling him to get away from me if they knew the truth.

Well I’m not being as specific as his lists because I can’t keep up with his speed of listing it off and I’m sorry for that.

I attack him (often on unrelated topics) when he questions me on wanting new dick. I mislead people in the blog. I am not nearly specific enough in an ongoing way about what a piece of shit I am. I should be giving more specific examples.

Noah feels that if he answers me honestly it is a bad idea because I am not sincere in my questioning so he can’t be sincere with me. If I ask Noah about things then it is about placating him or about beating myself up–like this morning. So even though he’s been bitter for weeks that I am not being honest enough in the blog this morning I am a problem again because I am asking him for examples of my shittiness in order to write this blog post. I seriously can’t do shit right. I am not taking his rebukes as instantaneous spurs to change into the behavior he wants and that’s a big problem.

I’m not falling into line. And he’s going to tell me that he will let me do this month and… after what I got yesterday I can’t fucking wait for the rest of the month.

I am hurting Noah again and again and again. Because I’m being a selfish bitch who cares about my sexual satisfaction instead of caring about how my behavior affects Noah.

I don’t think I’ll go into how the swing party went. Yeah, we had sex with other people. After being yelled at the whole way there about how I’m ruining Noah’s life because I don’t pay all of my attention to solely him I didn’t really have a lot of fun playing.

Yay for being a nasty disgusting abusive monster.

And he won’t tell anyone but me. Usually fairly loudly in the middle of the night. It’s totally appropriate that I keep getting screamed at though because he’s only yelling at me again because I did something again. Again and again and again. Because I’m a piece of shit gaslighter.

I say I’ll stop adding people. Then I notice that another interesting person is nearby and ooh shiny there goes my notice.

So I’m a fucking liar.

But I should really do this Slut Month. Because totally. He thinks it’s a super good idea. Because this way he will sustain maximum damage in a set period of time.

That’s how he phrases it. So I will inflict maximum damage on him.

This isn’t the first time in our marriage Noah has extensively (accurately) accused me of being abusive. I fucking wish he would talk to someone other than me about it. But he won’t. Because disloyalty. So I’m a monstrous piece of shit who has isolated him and made it so he can’t have friends because he can’t talk to them honestly about his life unless it is perfect and unfortunately I’m an abusive monster.

For the life of me I don’t understand why he wants to be married to me.

I could write for thousands of words about what a piece of shit I am but my arms are going to give out. I’m sorry my confession is less than every particular. Maybe I’ll talk him into sharing his notes so that I don’t have to bother to retype it. There are extensive notes, after all.

And then I will be such a duplicitous cunt rag that I won’t even post a link to twitter. So clearly that is one more way that I am misleading people and being a piece of shit.

Chasing and being ok

I should be sleeping, but I’m awake. I’m thinking about how much I’m shoving on my friend while she’s here. So here’s the sitch. I met this woman on Twitter during my road trip. Towards the end the kids and I realized we were going to have a miserable time camping at the snowy Grand Canyon and decided to detour. I asked the universe (and Twitter) where we should go. This woman popped up and said, “Pick me! Pick Phoenix!” So I did.

We spent a few days together and it was lovely. I think she is great. I think her kids are rad and super smart and really engaged in life. I honestly don’t meet that many public school kids who are that good at asserting themselves. I was seriously impressed with these kids. They are just… there’s a lot of there there.

So I asked my friend to come visit. Thing is, the entire time I’ve known this family they’ve been on my monthly donation list because of disability issues. The mama hasn’t worked in a while and that is indefinite. So this trip is horrifyingly prohibitively expensive.

So I said, “Can I bring you to California. You and your family. You need a break from life.”

We are going all over the bay area and down to Santa Barbara with a stop in Monterey on the way home. We will spend close to a week driving into San Francisco to see the museums.

These kids showed up at my house and with glowing faces they said, “Can we homeschool every day?!” They are so excited they can barely speak. Only they talk just as much as my kids do so this is a hilarious time. Oh so much volume. But fascinating! The opinions! The independent thought going on!

One of the first questions was: “Does your little boy still wear dresses?” Answer: “That question is more complicated than you think. My kid wears dresses sometimes. But I only sometimes have a little boy. Let’s talk about the gender binary and people who do not fall on it at either end.”

It was lovely.

I sat down after dinner and started listing off the cool things to do within an hour of driving… we filled the trip days fast. We have a full itinerary.

I am 100% convinced my friend never would have asked for something like this in her life. I’m spending around $1200-$1500 for them to have this vacation. Folks I don’t know that well that I met through the internet.

Why?

I am ruled by my impulses. Because it breaks my heart that my children get to have the life they have and children this god damn smart and talented don’t get to have as much opportunity. Yes, I’d love to bring you out here for three weeks for as much information as we can pack into your little skulls. It would be an honor.

I do these things to pay back the child I was. The child who felt so bad that everyone else got to go do fun things and take classes and go to museums. I got to move again.

Part of what is helping is that I’m not having to chase this family. I offered and she accepted… but I didn’t have to chase her and keep offering.

Being able to accept a gift this big is hard. Pride is a big deal. Accepting this much love and help from someone is hard to feel ok with. People can only take so much then they need to give. Not necessarily back to the person they received from… paying things forward is more important

I am running into asking rev limiters within myself. I can ask different people and it isn’t scary. I can’t ask a small group of people for things repeatedly. That’s too much hard; I feel too much like I’m hurting people.

Unless I get asked back. I need to be asked for things in exchange. Do you know one of the reasons it is easy for me to help this family have this trip? They are kind of assertive about how things need to work for them. “I need _____. I can’t do _____.” Even if receiving a gift they are directing it to be more useful for them. That melts my butter. I feel like they seriously are trying to get what they need from this gift.

I have probably asked many hundreds if not over a thousand people to spend time with me in my life. I don’t ask everyone for sexual attention. Unless I feel an energetic push back… I feel like I am hurting people by sticking around.

If I initiate all of our, “Hey let’s hang out” it will get more and more sporadic over time. My give runs out. My ask runs out. I wish I still had it in me to ask you over lots… I don’t. I don’t think you care. I think you’d rather do something else.

I think you’d rather not put your pants on and walk three blocks to see me after I drive multiple thousands of miles. That’s what I’m worth.

That’s from someone who has been publicly calling me “family” for over a decade. Yeah. That’s what I’m worth to my family.

But not Noah. And not my kids. They would do a whole hell of a lot to see me.

Noah crisscrossed the country chasing me. It was glorious.

Even though they live with me every day. If I start getting distracted by life or people they do tricks until I stare at them again. Please look at us. We need your attention. Yes my loves. I will give you my attention too.

Yes, I like pushy. Yes, I want people who say hey I’m here and I want your attention. Yes, that is risking rejection. Welcome to my god damn life.

It occurs to me that I could create a calendar for the house hold and share that with folks who are interested. Dates when people are free to invite themselves over could be clearly marked.

I can’t keep inviting the way I have for years. I’m tired and it hurts.

Noah says I’m just ditching my friends for lovers. I don’t think that is true. I can list off lots of friends talking and visits in the past few months. It is true that I’m putting less effort into my friends.

But I think I was there anyway. I think there was just a brief surge for dating. I think that is going to… change as time moves on anyway. I’ll run out of ask there too. I don’t get the impression that most of the folks I date are going to feel ok being pushy with asking for dates. My submissive. My glorious submissive. Thank you for being so brave so far. I know I’m busy and asking me means risking me being overwhelmed and kind of a twerp on a given day. I’m grateful you ask. Thank you. I’m sorry I’m not always good company but I’m so glad I get to know you. Sometimes when I say I’m not good company it isn’t about me not liking you it is about me wanting to keep my nasty moods away from you. I know you are comfortable with getting the less than sweet parts of me, but I don’t want to take my feelings out on anyone like that. I don’t want to start using you for that kind of thing.

I love you too much.

I’ll hit you; I’ll carve my name into your flesh with a scalpel; I’ll kick you as hard as I can in the testicles. I do not want to hurt you. I want you to feel loved. I can’t be nasty to you when I’m having a bad day. That’s not cool.

I need to be nasty to you on good days when it is a positive, loving choice for both of us.

I’m going to run out of chase on dating for the same reason I always do. Most people… aren’t as into me as I want them to be. They like me ok, but they don’t really seek me out. I seek them out as much as I can… then I can’t anymore.

Usually that’s about three months.

The people who have gone longer than that… my first fiancé, my Owner, Puppy, Spot, Noah… they always act like they are drawn to me. I don’t think my first fiancé would have fallen out of love with me. I think he wanted to marry me and he was going to be ok being that person forever. I think I could have had that. But he needed me to not change very much. He needed me to calm down and not be so crazy. He needed me to be very conservative sexually. I couldn’t do that for him. I think I could still be with my Owner if I hadn’t wanted kids so much. Puppy was the only one who dumped me. He has some serious issues and that was for the best. He would have been very abusive. Spot… that one did run its course. There was no more there for that relationship. But we are still friends.

Noah came back when I shoved him away as hard as I could. He was still my friend even though it hurt because not knowing me was more painful than dealing with me rejecting him as a boyfriend. Then after a while of being my friend he noticed that I was single for five minutes and he took a chance on offering me the best deal of my whole damn life. Would I like to marry my best friend and have the babies I’ve been dreaming of? Yes. Yes I would.

I like sudden intense protestations of devotion that I end up being able to count on. That works for me.

And Noah has chased me ever since. I do not always honor his efforts as I should. But I take breaks to admire just how forking nice to me he is. He chases me. He feels like he would die without me.

It makes it kind of hard to keep chasing people who are not that enthusiastic about seeing me, who do not push for time or attention, who do not make it clear that they want to know me.

I’m spoiled as fuck.

My submissive chases me à la Pepé Le Pew. Slow and patient and just there for my entire adult life.

You know who else chases me? Sarah. That’s why she is My Sarah. Because she has chased me and pushed and offered and grabbed chances to see me for over twelve years.

Lots and lots and lots of people can ask me once or twice a year for a visit. That’s so wonderful and sweet and generous. They give me what they have to spare. They ask for how much of me they want. I’m grateful for every person who gives me a three hour visit a year because they want to know me and that’s all they have spare. That is a gift.

It is so glorious having people in my life who want more and more and more of me. The number of people who feel that way is growing and I can’t help but think that is so wonderful. One of the women I look up to most described knowing me as being like watching the birth of a planet. I’m developing my own gravity.

So this ADD book I’m reading keeps saying, “There is something special about a lot of people with ADD. You can’t put your finger on what it is. It’s just there.” I find that hilarious.

When you look at comorbidity things: ADD is highly correlated with trauma which is highly correlated with being targeted which is highly correlated to being something that attracts notice.

Being special/different/weird is threatening as fuck. Lemme tell you.

Hey, is that a self love moment there? Did I just admit that I know I’m special?

Whoa.

I am. I always have been. I do radiate energy like the sun. Either I freak people out or I draw them in. I pay attention to people. I want to know them and love them. Just looking at people as hard as I do is special. Not many people are even capable of really looking at everyone around them and paying attention the way I do. It is some trick of attention and hypervigilance and empathy.

And where in the hell did I find the well of love I seem to have for people? Despite everything. Recently someone said I didn’t break; I broke open.

I need to be needed or there isn’t a lot of point in me. I think that the majority of creatures who are ever born live and die not having a point. I think that the creature has to make their own point, their own purpose, their own meaning.

Am I doing it?

So far people in ten states and a few different countries have told me that knowing me has changed them for the better. It’s a start.

I can say with great certainty that the three people who live here, my submissive, and My Sarah will chase me just about to the ends of the earth. Jenny has flown out to rescue me when I was in danger even though she isn’t by nature a chaser.

I still call her Jenny because I’m the only damn one who can. To you, she is Jennifer. You do not have leave to address her familiar. I think the only reason I can’t mature into the grown up name is because it was a very young person who first opened her heart to me. It was a very young person with intense wounds of her own who learned how to put up with me. When I cry and think of how very much I miss my friend I am dimly aware that we are grown ups now… but I miss her from that place of being very young. Because that is where she first touched me. I met her when I was twelve. I feel like twelve was for me the absolute last gasping breaths of my childhood. That was right as I started seriously dating.

Jenny managed to catch the last bits of me that could love as a child. And I love her with all the intensity of a child for their best friend still. Thank you.

Despite how not chaste I am… I am still chased. I am deemed worthy of love. And by people I respect and love in return. People who absolutely thrill me to my toes that these people think I am worth enough of their energy to chase me. People who are impacted by my gravity pull and just have to be near me.

Oh I love you I love you I love you.

That’s at least six people who will… chase me pretty fucking far. Blacksheep has jumped enormous hurdles to be my friend. DSH has gone waaaaaaay far past her comfort zone for me even though she isn’t one to chase people like me.

I could keep going.

I am blessed and blessed and blessed. My Bonus Family. It would take a few pages to go through all they have done for me. Even though I’m god damn difficult and sometimes they need some boundaries. That’s healthy.

Most of the people who love me with great intensity have rev limiters of their own. They have lives. Part of the reason I love them so much is because they are intense people with a lot going on. They give me what they can. Even if they can’t chase me the way I like to be chased…

Really, how spoiled can someone be? I get chased. I have three people chasing me 24/7. Quit being so greedy.

And yet I’d still kinda like to set up a calendar that says when folks can invite themselves over and see what happens.

I don’t want to decide who it is and how many people. I just… want to see what happens. I assume not much. I assume a few people sometimes but not much.  The key to happiness is low expectations.

I’m really looking forward to the next few weeks. I’m nervous because this is a lot of time to be “on” with folks I don’t know that well. But I know this mama through mental/physical disability support. At least we are both very understanding of our mutual shortcomings. Ha.

I am so grateful that they accepted my invitation. This is going to be a lot of fun for me. I can’t wait to homeschool her kids. I feel like a walking encyclopedia and that is one of my favorite feelings. See how useful I can be. I am a good tool!

One of the things that makes me special is how fast I can access disparate topics in my brain and explain them in simple or complicated ways for just about anyone. I can make connections between things that seem unrelated… until I explain… faster than the vast majority of people I’ve ever met. And I’ve met a lot of people. I am not an expert in almost anything. Instead of going deep I go wide. That allows for a different kind of thinking, a different kind of intensity.

Ok, reading this book on ADD is making me question something about my long term mental health diagnosis: depression. I don’t do the torpor kind of depression. I do the head-down-keep-working-as-you-hate-yourself-and-want-to-die kind. Apparently that is a pretty standard ADD thing. Oh. Huh. That’s supposed to be one of those things they kinda look for. I hate them and their not looking.

If you loathe yourself: you are depressed. Sorta. Maybe.

I made Noah listen to this song. I can’t find it easily on the internet so you get lyrics.  The thing is… I need to be loved. And I need it from lots of people because I’m trying to push past a whole lot of not being loved.

There is some interesting research out there on preverbal trauma and early formative trauma. I feel like I still need to be filled with as much love as an infant. I was not wanted. Not from conception. I only exist because a bad thing happened. What do I have to do to make up for that? What do I have to do for the world to make up for the harm I caused by coming into being. For declaring, “I don’t care that this hurts you. I need to be here.”

It’s not like I think I really deserve to be punished for choosing to be born. It was an accident. A surprise.

To be fair, my mom told me over and over I was a surprise. She didn’t know she wanted me till she had me. Sissy is the one who told me over and over that I was an accident. My mom just admitted it was rape. My mom tries to make sense of her life given the stories she has been given. God wanted her to have that child. Me.

I have been crying for my mother for over 31, almost 32 years. My mom was 32 when I was born. I might be 35 or 36 if I have another child.

Am I a grown up yet?

When my mama was 35 years old she had four children. She locked her abusive husband out of the house and sued for divorce. On the grounds that he had been raping their children. He was still given partial custody. He refused to pay alimony or child support so my mom lost the house and we ended up living in the car. Well, he would pay it. In exchange for sex.

Sometimes I think I judge my mother far too harshly for surviving a world of horror.

Sex. Sex. Sex. Is it good? Is it bad? Is it neither? Is it both? Does it depend?

I think that if I don’t have that much pull… I should probably just be ok with that. It is probably healthier that way. Maybe. Who knows.

Yes. Yes, I want pushy.

I think people misunderstand suicide prevention. There is a lot of shaming. “Don’t do it because it is selfish. You hurt people.” I hurt people by living too. I promise. It’s always complicated. It is always about the balance of hurting people vs being hurt.

I think it should be framed as enlightened self interested selfishness. Someday I will get to the point where I am out of good days. I’m not there yet. I’m trying to construct a future so fantastic that I absolutely want to stay alive to see it.

I know we are giving up the WWOOF year I’ve always wanted because of a baby I want more. You know what? I bet I will still go to Africa with Sarah someday. I bet I will still go to Taiwan to see Pam someday. I bet I will still go to South America someday. I don’t know who will go with me or who I will see… but it’s probably going to happen.

I’m like that.

I go do things.

No more travel for a long time though. I need to save money. We don’t really travel cheap.

The kids and Noah have promised to veto all requests for travel in 2017 even if I say, “but we could…”

Ha.

I love my reminders.

My Eldest Child likes to say, “You should listen to yourself more, mom. You are a smart lady.” But I don’t listen to myself. I need to hear it from you. I need to hear it in your voice. I need to have you replace my inside voice. Do you know why? Because when I talk to me I’m so god damn mean. When you remind me of something I just said a few minutes ago… you usually sound so nice.

I know I sounded nice when I said it to you. That’s because it is easy to be nice to you. No, I can’t remind myself in that same nice way. I need you on a tape in my head. Because my tapes are all so bad. Thank you for reminding me.

I never mean that sarcastically.

Well… maybe once in a while but I’ll make it obvious with a funny voice.

Shiny change of topic. I feel like it is wise to restate a thing about voice in my blog. I talk to “you” a lot. That’s a moving target. I often consciously create sentences so I’m addressing multiple situations and multiple people at once and I phrase it as a singular. So if you feel paranoid that I’m talking to you… maybe…. inclusively…

Or maybe you’re the one. Noah gets a lot of direct address. Ok, other people do too and I hide behind the group thing. Let’s be honest. But I do the group address thing too!

I’m just tricksy.

I sat here for a while and just went through some visuals of stuff I’d like to have happen in my life. Oh let it be so.

Words and asking

Yesterday Noah asked me why I didn’t use my words to ask him for something if I wanted it. I hissed, “How well does that go?” He said that I get a lot of little things I ask for and almost none of the big things. I just about screamed, “That’s why I didn’t fucking ask.”

There is this story about my mom that goes around and around in my head. My mom got tired of having her little boys play with their Matchbox cars in the kitchen, the only non-carpeted room. She knew my dad would tell her no to ripping the carpet out of their bedroom. “It would hurt the resale value of the house.” So she waited until he went to work (he worked graveyards), put the kids to sleep in her bed, took speed, and ripped the floor up by herself. She had the laminate mostly installed before he got home.

I asked my mom why she didn’t ask him. She snorted and said, “If I ask then I get told no, then the consequences are big. If I just do it… he’s not going to undo it.”

I think that’s a lot of why when I decided I couldn’t be monogamous right now I said I just couldn’t follow rules and I needed to try stuff. I needed to see what felt right and not say no to things before I even really decided what I felt about it.

And that backfires. Like such arrangements do.

Sometimes. And sometimes it is absolutely the only way to get what you want at all. Yeah, I was a serious asshole. I really was.

I feel like the fact that my sex life has been entirely measured in someone else’s satisfaction for many years now has broken something in me. Something I don’t know how to fix. I’m bitter about how much “taking one for the team” I’ve done.

I guess the thing I’m getting from the team is physical support through disability. Oh.

It is interesting having a friend visiting for the weekend (sorry I’m puking) who is an absolutely ardent feminist. Of the take-no-shit-variety. I was doing my expounding on trying to figure out what I “owe” Noah.

She looked so pissed. I said, “It’s ok. Say it. Even if it’s mean.”

“I want to punch you in the face. You don’t owe him shit.” She went on at more length. But that bit is enough.

An awful lot of our relationship is predicated on transactional trades. We spend a lot of time talking about how much we owe one another. It’s complicated. It is a lot of what allows both of us to feel safe.

But there is no fair.

How much of everything in life has to be changed just because of one shift. I don’t know.

Yesterday I emailed all of my folks and told them I am not going to go out on a date again in May. We need to actually negotiate. This is involving some really long, rough conversations in person and a shit ton of livejournal entries on our private filters. There are things my kids don’t need to see someday.

I am so weird about boundaries.

I think that part of the problem right now is I have made a lot of deals over the years I probably shouldn’t have made. Not how I did. They took from me in ways I didn’t really have that much to give. And I feel long term hurt by them. And I’m feeling bitter. And I’m holding it against Noah.

That list of done-me-wrongs never needs to be part of the public record. That’s kinda like crying rape because you didn’t like the sex. The fact that these are in retrospect not deals I should have made…

That’s not something I’m going to publicly take Noah to task for. That’s complicated.

I made choices. I made choices I shouldn’t have made, but I didn’t know that till it was too late. That isn’t something to punish Noah for. But I clearly do.

Recently Noah made a list of shit he was holding over me (good god that. STILL?!?!) and I should probably do the same.

That won’t be public.

Noah and I are in a funny place. We both understand very clearly that if we don’t make this marriage work… we will just not ever be ok again. We won’t get over this failure. Neither of us would remarry and have more kids. We would date and be complete assholes about never trusting anyone again. This is… one of those things about our personalities. We both walked into this not sure that it was really a good idea to be taking a risk on even one person when we have been burned and burned and burned and burned.

When you learn before age 3 that you are not loved, not likable and all you are worthy of is abuse and contempt…

Trying once is really what you have in you. Getting over that is brutally hard. You can try once. After that it will be broken in a way that can’t be got back.

We get one shot at happily ever after.

No pressure.

To be fair most of the first ten years have been excellent. This really has been a good marriage. But some things need to change and how they need to change and what that shape will look like is… in flux and that’s god damn terrifying. Change sucks donkey dick.

I find it… interesting… that Noah is really willing to talk about a third kid lately. Yeah. That would put me right back on a choke chain. It’s true. I would go home with my baby again.

I want another baby. I’d see a high risk OB. I’d be at a hospital the whole time. I’d follow orders so I wouldn’t die. But… yeah. I don’t think it is going to happen for lots of reasons.

I know my friends are starting to talk to me about adoption but I’m really not done grieving the son I wanted to give birth to.

This is complicated with a gender fluid kid who really… is on their own journey.

I wanted to work through my shit with a little boy. I know that isn’t “fair” either. But I did. I have to grieve not getting that. I mean, I have a great relationship with my Bonus Kid and I’m really happy he visits more lately. But it’s not the same.

I have never been allowed to love a little boy of my blood. My nephew was the closest I came to that and… complicated. My brothers were violent monsters. I had no other family contact.

This is just a thing.

I dreamed about my son for years. Sometimes I wonder if I was dreaming about the sons I could have had with previous partners and that just wasn’t meant to be part of this story with Noah. I don’t know.

It’s complicated.

Yes I know there are lots of kids who need homes. They are going to have different problems genetically than my family. I don’t already intimately know what needs to be done to correct their unavoidable issues; I have researched everything that has touched my family extensively over the past fifteen years. It is going to be a very different very hard problem to work with a different child.

I am so tired.

Now that I have an almost 8 year old and an almost 6 year old, do I really want another baby?

Yes. I really do. But it isn’t going to happen. Sometimes I wonder if wanting space away from Noah is part of grieving that. He doesn’t want another baby.

I get why. There are good reasons. I feel sad.

Being a mom is kinda the thing I think I’m best at. I get quiverfull. I get it.

This is all so complicated. Because if Noah was all “Fine let’s have a kid” I’d be all “Bye side-boys. I’ll see you in 5-7 years.”

Even though the rest of the deals are still not where I need them to be long-term. I wouldn’t care.

Life is so complicated.

My biology understands that I exist to breed even if the rest of me would like to do other things with this meat sack.

People are so fucking weird. Even though I don’t really have the spoons to have a baby I would. I’d start trying this month if Noah consented. He’s about to be 40. Time’s a wastin’. I turn 35 this year.

But that ship has sailed. We need to figure something different out. Shit. That’s hard. It hurts.

We construct these careful houses where we can be safe. Do this, don’t do this. So we try to draw as little negative attention and as much positive attention as possible while maintaining stasis. We accept limits that may not be sustainable in service to particular goals.

I don’t know what sustainable means. I am not the best sustainer in the world. I work best in sprints followed by periods of collapse. Parenting that way sucks. So I have to be more level for them. Which is an interesting thing to balance. I can stay level if I stay small. Or if I get bigger with support.

I can’t be a bigger person and take up more room and get no more support and stay completely level. I can’t. [delete text that doesn’t go into the record].

I’m having feelings.

Thank you to everyone for the extent of the “I know you two will solve this” message I’m getting from a variety of folks. From folks we date/play with to other friends. It’s kinda funny. I feel all y’all believe in us far more than I do right now.

Thank you. I need you to carry that belief for a bit. It is hard for me.

Part of being able to construct your own reality rests on the basic requirement that you must be able to believe in what you are doing. I have a pretty good reality distortion field. But it’s flickering and I feel like I am not able to believe in what I am trying to make true.

I don’t know how to feel more safe and open right now. I feel closed off, defensive, scared. I’m not negotiating from a mindset of generosity. I have a scarcity mindset and I feel so tired of always having to take one for the team.

But Noah takes a lot for the team too. I’m not acknowledging that enough. We have both been running deficits for years. It isn’t just me. I… I don’t even know where to begin in this negotiation. This is so hard. Do we make lists of things we have been missing/pining for and then rank them in importance?

How do we deal with time? Is it about how much time we spend together? Is it about “how dare you spend time with someone else?”

Honestly I was out too much at night in April. I wasn’t touching base with the kids the way I want to. I have arranged all the night time babysitting we are going to have till the end of July, I think. I’m not going to go out more than that. No matter what it is for.

This time with my children goes so fast. If I miss much of this time I can’t ever get it back. I don’t get a second chance. I do remember that priority.

But I don’t ever get back the chance to have the sex life I want to have in this life either. If I just… don’t… that’ll be a thing.

How much do I want? I don’t know. Honestly given how busy my life is… I literally don’t have time for as much independent dating as I did in April. That’s going to kill me. No hyperbole. My body will give out if I don’t sleep more than that.

What does sustainable mean?

What is a need and what is a want?

I feel like I need to have some kind of nonmonogamous contact in my life. What that is… I don’t know. I think the need level is probably actually fairly low. I think one date a month probably would be ok. I’d like to go to parties at other times and be allowed to play then. I could accept having to play together. That would be fun to figure out. It would change who we play with somewhat and what kind of play we do. Maybe?

I can deal with evolution. I don’t have to play how I used to play, not exactly. I don’t anyway. So much has changed.

I feel like I did need to go try. It was wonderful and I’m really glad I got to be reminded of what SM means to me. And I got off a lot.

I do need some of this in my life. I may increase how much I need as my children need me less.

For now I do know that my time and energy is still… mostly going into the kids. I choose this. I want this. This is who I want to be. When I finish growing up I will be able to look at incontrovertible proof that I can sustain something. I need to see the real evidence of that before I will believe it. I’m not even halfway there yet. Don’t get cocky, wench.

Hubris is dangerous.

I have about three more years till I hit the halfway point. I believe I have about four more years with Eldest Child and about six more years with Youngest Child to teach them what they need to know to keep themselves safe… or they will have to learn it on their own painfully. That’s my window. Either I help them establish the habits that will carry them through a lifetime… or they have to learn them later, painfully, on their own.

Development is a funny beast. I’ve studied it a lot. I have incredibly strong opinions about brain development and attachment and behaviorism and emotional health and mental health and…

And I get one chance to do this right. Period. If I fuck it up I will forever more be trying to heal damage I caused.

No pressure.

I love unschooling. I’m not even being sarcastic. This is my kind of pressure chamber. I thrive under this specific kind of “Succeed. There is no or else. Succeed” pressure. I just… do it. Ok.

If you can’t find a way you make a way. The most resilient people are the ones who believe they have no choice but to make something work.

This whole “owe” thing is complicated. I get the anti-feminist bits of it. I do. But you probably don’t see how much it gives too.

Ugh. Systems. They exist for reasons and some of those reasons are good and some are shitty. WTF

But I really do need to think about this “you don’t owe him shit” thing. What do we choose to owe and what is being extorted from us? I think that is the more crucial distinction. I think making conscious trades and feeling indebted for them is not specifically evil. I think that having someone extort recompense for trades… is a problem.

Where is the line?

Shit monogamy is easier. You give what you have to give and that is that. Kinda end of discussion.

I NEVER EVEN TOOK CALCULUS. FUCK THIS ADVANCED VARIABLE BULLSHIT.

My kids are asking me a lot of questions about Lemonade. Yes they get to hear it with the swearing. There are some fucking subjects that deserve swearing. The work is to figure out context. We talk about that a lot. Code switching is a big topic around here. If you maintain super formal “nice people” manners 100% of the time… a whole lot of people will think you are a snob. Having multiple kinds of approaches to talking to people is handy.

I said to a friend “We only fight about nonmonogamy.” The response: “So you only fight about sex.”

Ok, yeah. That’s true. Not money. Not kids. Not housework (if I start feeling peevish about not getting enough help I can ask for it and get it with great civility).

Sex.

Sex is so annoying.

WHY DO I LIKE HAVING SEX SO MUCH!??!?!?! Sigh.

I really do.

I like what happens in my body when I’m having sex with more than one person. I like it a lot. I like what it does to my general energy level. Is it worth this fight?

Yeah. It is.

If we are going to be married for many more decades… I’m not spending them always taking one for the team. I need my sex life to be about my pleasure.

And pain.

I’m pretty sure I know who I want to hurt on a longer term basis. I am less convinced I know for sure what I need from my bottoming/submitting/etc. I have some idea of pieces I’d like. But are those all needs? Not really. I could be pretty flexible. I could adapt.

I am weirdly conscious of how much of my sexuality formed around my Owner. I’m ok with lots of those buttons shifting. I have no attachment to them staying where they are. But I need them moved and not just… ignored. If that makes sense.

I am a cheerful situational pervert. I’m happy to please the one I’m with. I don’t need all aspects of my experiences to be the same.

I’m not the kind of fetishist who collects the garments and sized toys that all future partners will wear one right after another.

But I’ve sure worn a lot of them. For a little while. I have never been willing to do that for very long.

I don’t like anyone that much.

Do you know why some of the awful stuff between Noah and I really doesn’t need to be published? It’s bad enough that I’m an abusive bully. I don’t need to publicly humiliate him. That’s a very different sort of line. I say some awful things some times. It’s bad enough that he can hear it in his head. He doesn’t need to see it. And know that lots and lots and lots of his friends are going to see it. Know his children can read the things that hurt him the most.

Oh JesusFuckingChrist No.

No. There are things that can’t be taken back. I can say that things are hard for me. I can’t list done-me-wrongs. Not publicly. No.

owe my family better than that.

See how the owe is complicated?

It is useful and problematic at the same time. Just like me.

Selfish asshole

I’ve said for a while that I’m not interested in being polyamorous. I also say that I’m not good at being monogamous. These are still both true. Noah and I have been talking and talking and talking. We are both wicked insecure. We both have a lot of abandonment issues. It makes sense given that neither of us have relationships with our families of origin.

We both feel kind of at sea in the world. We both have a hard time feeling truly connected, wanted, important. This isn’t a problem that one or the other of us have.

I’ve been hurting Noah. He’s been hurting me. I kinda feel like we need to do that sometimes just so that we have to stop and scream LOOK AT ME. STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING.

Because over time we take one another for granted. We try to be grateful. We try to be aware and appreciative but it’s hard year after year. Sometimes we need to go do some asshole stuff so we can apprciate the fact that mostly we aren’t assholes to each other.

Last post I thought I’d have three dates a month and Noah would have one. Noah doesn’t really like what I will have to do to deal with that one date a month without being mean to him. Because I would have to take steps to deal with my feelings and not abuse him. I would need to create a lot of space around myself so I don’t lash out.

Because I would want to lash out.

Noah dating triggers so many insecurities for me. I don’t like it.

This is weird to me because I don’t freak out about him playing with friends at parties I’m at. That doesn’t bother me and I don’t god damn know why.

But Noah wanting to go out on a date with someone else… One on one time where he can pay attention to them because they are special…

I’m a fucking asshole.

Because I sure don’t mind me dating. Uhm, we decided I need to go down to two dates in a month. Because yeah. We aren’t cancelling May. Because that’s asshole shit. But starting in June we are going to… not be going out with other people so much. Because yeah. We may not be perfect at monogamy but spending as much time together as possible is really what we both want from life. If we feel that way we should act that way.

Going forward I am very happy about the boundary: no sex in places our kids go (other than our house). That feels… like a thing for me.

I’m trying hard. I’m trying to figure out what wants to bend and what needs to stay rigid and…

This is all hard.

But Noah doesn’t want me to hate him. Not even a little. Not even for a little while. So yeah. Him dating is complicated. Because I do hate him when he dates. It’s terrible. It feels awful. But it’s there. I fucking hate him. He is pretty confident I wouldn’t be able to compartmentalize that long term. Maybe he’s been looking at me for a while.

And hearing about his dates makes me physically ill.

So yeah. How much dating should we do? Maybe not so much.

Is this fair? I don’t think so. But life isn’t fair.

I kinda want to list all the things we talked about. All the levels of insecurities. But the thing is, talking about that has the possibility to hurt my friends and I don’t want to do that. I’m not insecure because of the people involved. The people involved being this safe actually makes it that much harder to feel this way.

All of the people involved are wonderful, safe, kind, considerate and loving. I’m the asshole.

I’m so sorry.

I spent a long time talking to the Professor yesterday and he tried very hard to talk me into thinking that it is ok for me to get angry with Noah. I don’t feel like it is ok. I feel like it is disgusting and shameful because he deserves better than that from me. He really does. He is my whole world.

Even if I like fucking other people. Noah is everything.

Yes we still have a lot of conversations ahead of us about play. The intensity thing is going to continue to be a … topic… for a long time to come.

Sunday and Monday were so awesome. Thank you K for letting me have this. Saturday was… mixed. Mostly good. (Thanks Deity.)

My feelings are not because of the people Noah plays with. My feelings are because I’m neurotic, insecure, and I have very little intrinsic self worth. This is not anyone else’s fault. This is my shit. And it’s shit.

Noah and I talked a lot about whether or not it is easier for me for him to date strangers or friends and…

It is easier to have him date friends. It isn’t that I think anyone he has seen has any desire to be a homewrecker or a problem or hurt me or anything like that.

My fear isn’t rational. My fear isn’t based on anyone doing anything wrong. But it is intense, all consuming and there. I have to act like it is there and deal with it. Or it leaks into my life and I am a seriously problematic person.

I can’t keep verbally abusing Noah. I just can’t. Which means I need to take steps to make sure that stops. It isn’t something that comes up very often. I think this is the third time we’ve had to work on this issue in about 12 years.

When I feel hatred like that… I am fucking mean.

Yeah. I know exactly what to say to make you feel like shit. I’ve watched you for years. Yes. I can take you apart with a verbal scalpel. Yup. No problem.

I need this to be the last time I ever talk to Noah like that. It just can’t happen again. He deserves and has earned better from me. Which means I need to be careful about the situations I put myself in. Because when I’m that angry… I need to put physical space between me and Noah. Because I’m a problem.

And I don’t handle him dating. I feel really ashamed of myself.

Noah wants me to be open, vulnerable, transparent, and relaxed. I can’t be any of those things when I hate him.

I just can’t.

Which isn’t to say that I think him dating deserves me hating him. It doesn’t.

I am such an asshole.

I’d rather be told, “No really this ‘I don’t want to follow rules’ shit is over. Follow some fucking rules” than be told, “Fine then I’m doing what I want.” One of those effectively reins me in. One of those means… our relationship kinda sucks. But it only effectively reins me in after I’m good and hurt and pissed.

Like the mature and responsible person I obviously am.

It isn’t that I feel I must own Noah’s cock solely and permanently. It is that… I want to be there. I don’t want to feel like I am being left so he can go find someone more interesting. Which makes me a flaming cunt for dating other people.

God I don’t like me very much.

I have no particular desire to stop seeing my submissive, Deity, Cupid, or Daddy. But if I only get to see them every other month… that I can live with. To be fair I’ll probably make damn sure I end up at parties with my submissive every month even if we don’t make dinner dates every single month.

Noah won’t let me hit him. Ok he would let me hit him. He told me so. But he wouldn’t like it at all and that feels terrible. I have absolutely no desire to hit someone who is tolerating being hit but who doesn’t like it. That’s disgusting.

I feel… like a piece of shit for wanting to date and not wanting Noah to date. I am not asking Noah to be monogamous.

I notice that he puts a lot of effort into dates with other people. We have dates if I go find an event and I go find a babysitter and I …

That hurts.

I feel selfish and terrible.

Yeah. This is who I am. I am selfish and terrible.

Silence

This is an easy trigger to trace. Many of my earliest memories are of my biological father hurting me sexually. I was required to be silent and still. If I squirmed or whimpered or anything I was punished.

can suffer silently. But it requires that I go away. It requires that I give you a bag of flesh and bones and I will be somewhere over there watching.

Noah points out that this really isn’t just about my father though. There are people littered through my whole life who required me to suffer in silence. My arms are completely not up for the laundry list… but it’s there.

It’s a trigger. It isn’t that I think someone is terrible for commenting on how loud I am. (Yes. I am very loud when someone is hitting me.) It is that it is a trigger. It is that now I feel ashamed and bad and like I did something wrong and shaking this off is gonna suck.

I’m supposed to go pretend I’m a bad ass tomorrow.

Fuck.

I’m loud. I’m loud when I top. I’m loud when I bottom. I’m loud when I fucking exist in a room.

I’m loud.

I make people cringe and move away from me just because I am offensive. I exist too loudly. I should stop.

I have absolutely no idea how to get to a happy medium from here. I don’t know what a happy medium would be.

Yes. I’m loud. I can scream so loud that a party of hundreds of people comes to a sudden halt. (I’m told people still feel haunted by that night.) I can quieten down auditoriums of thousands of screaming teenagers. Fucking loud.

I feel like that makes me bad. I am inconvenient, intrusive, rude. I force people to acknowledge me. I force people to have to be fully present with the fact that I am in pain.

I’m a fucking asshole.

I’m not here to make you have a more comfy experience.

I need to shake this off and go back to cackling with glee. I have a boy to cut up.

I will not let this be a problem for me. I don’t give a shit that I feel triggered. I have shit to do.

I’m really kinda done feeling so god damn bad for existing.

I don’t think this person meant I should suffer in silence. I’m not saying that. I’m saying that commenting on how very loud I am is complicated. Noah has kinda figured it out. He solves this by saying “More!”

Pretty much everyone else… it’s a mixed thing.

This is a me problem.

Not fair

I spend a lot of time worrying that what I want isn’t fair. Not to Noah, not to the people I am propositioning, not to my kids, maybe even not to me.

What is “fair”?

Noah is having some feelings about how much time I’m spending thinking about the folks I’m chasing. That is logical and reasonable. I haven’t spent much time with anyone yet. It’s mostly in my head and some IMing and letters and emails. It’s almost entirely emotional energy at this point. But he notices.

I feel like it isn’t fair that I forcefully reject the label of polyamorous because I just can’t take on being responsible for someone’s needs that way. This article reminds me that I don’t have much to offer.

The thing is… I actually do talk to my prey quite a bit. I think there is a big difference between one-offs I pick up at parties (where I usually will not even write down my email address or phone number or name: if you can remember my name to google me you can find me) and the people I…

am attached to.

Because this is love. I don’t want to call it polyamory because I have issues of my own. But this is love.

Why do I love my submissive? Because he is smart, funny, he’s a great father. I have barely met one of his children one time many many years ago in a waving from the car sort of thing (I think but I might be remembering wrong) so I’m judging from his self-descriptions.

But I know how much time he spends. I know what activities he engages in. I know how he encourages his kids to try and fail and get up again. I respect him.

Even though I disagree with some of the decisions that his personal beliefs lead him to make… I actually have respect for the fact that he has his faith and he is going to god damn act it out. It matters to him and I really respect that. I respect it when people take their faith (whatever that is) seriously.

My faith is it takes all kinds. And if we are going to all make it that will take money and help.

I love the way he has taken care of his slave. He has one of the longest term M/s relationships I know. They are so loving and considerate and caring. Being around them always makes me feel just a little bit happier that such people are in the world. I respect that they model how to talk to one another and be loving while having boundaries.

I even really respect the fact that even with ownership between them they get to do what they each need to do for their lives.

Because we are all different. We are all complicated. We all have such different needs. They show me one way of working out those different needs. They don’t switch together because that’s a complicated thing in a dynamic. But other people are different.

I can understand to some degree. I can’t switch with Noah. Sometimes that is hard. Sometimes I think it simplifies things and improves my life. I appreciate that Noah doesn’t have a strong need for me to turn on dominance with him when I’m totally not in the mood. That was hard with my Owner. He’s a very switchy person. He wanted to have ultimate control of what kind of stimulation he was getting when, but sometimes he wanted to be dominated on demand and that was serious work for me.

I have a deep, burning inner sadist but this dominance thing is different. No matter what my submissive is saying. He doesn’t know. Picture me sticking my tongue out but this is a smiley free zone.

Today I took youngest child to the penultimate ballet class of the series and I used the hour to exercise. I ran for 40 minutes then I did a bunch of crunches/push ups/planks/leg lifts/etc until I needed to get the kidlet.

I have an increasingly weird opinion of my body. Why can’t I get stronger and stay fat this isn’t fair. I do drop weight pretty fast when I start heavily exercising. I feel this awful feeling of “See. If you only cared about your looks you could be thin” and I want to scream back WATCH ME BUY 15 GALLONS OF ICE CREAM AND EAT IT ALL THIS WEEK MOTHERFUCKER I’LL SHOW YOU ‘CARES ABOUT LOOKS!”

Ahem. But I’m not sure that is actually good for my health. So I don’t know what I’m doing.

I want to be better able to ride Noah (or anyone else). So I want to get better at running. Because right now I want to do that. I’ve been having a lot of fun on top lately with Noah even though that is historically not much my thing.

Really lots has been changing about my sexual interests over the last few years. On one hand Noah is so ideal because he is up for trying anything with the merest suggestion. On the other hand I’ve kind of exhausted the things he really wants to try.

Even though people are constantly surprised that I’m not the top in the relationship… no… I like being a sexual follower. I like doing what you want to do err, but let’s be clear that is if you are in the mood to do what I like doing. Cause I’m a selfish shithead. I like being told what to do and how to do it. Even if what you like isn’t perfectly my favorite I really like that you want to tell me to do it.

So I’m in an interesting place with my submissive. He thinks I’ve been so dominant with him and I think I’ve been an incredibly perceptive service top. I say the things to you I wish someone was saying to me.

Sigh

I’m actually looking forward to Noah watching me top in a few weeks. He’s never seen me top Sarah. He’s never seen me seriously beat on anyone. I feel like… after ten years he gets to meet a whole new me.

This is terrifying and exciting at the same time.

I hope it doesn’t change how he sees me too much.

I need to review some anatomy lessons. Especially the bone structure of the face.

God I’m mean.

No marks anyone can see when you go to work. I’ll be good.

I may draw these lines with a bright red marker to remind me. And cross out the no-no areas on the body with bright red. Because I’m still learning new boundaries and it’s important I don’t fuck this up.

The amount of trust that is being placed in me, quite frankly, scares the shit out of me. Why would anyone put their physical safety in my hands like this? Why would anyone give me permission to do this much damage to their body?

Shit, why am I just about begging the Professor on my knees to be just as rough or worse with me?

Because I’m a masochist.

Because I’m a sadist.

Because I have wonderful, complimentary friends who can help take me to heights of ecstasy completely impossible in vanilla sex. I know. I’ve tried and tried and tried.

I want someone completely and totally pedantic to crawl inside my head and whisper pretty much whatever he wants because I have faith that he sees me better than I see myself and I think he will say things I should hear.

I hope my submissive trusts me for fairly similar reasons.

I know Sarah trusts me for that reason. Lots of history proving that I will tell you what you really need to get programmed into your inside voice as I cause your body to absolutely flood with chemicals so that these lessons can be beaten as deeply into your unconscious existence as possible.

You are good. You are worthy. You are strong. You are beautiful. You are so very necessary. You are wonderful. I see you. I am so happy you are here. Thank you for being here with me. Thank you for loving me. I love you. I love you. I love you.

The script varies and has different components but that’s kind of the basis of what I like to beat into people.

I don’t hit people because I want them to feel small or bad or wicked. I hit people because it is fucking hot and you are so fucking nice for letting me do this. Extra bonus points if it gets you off. I’m completely satisfied with you just enjoying it.

For me, and for some other perverts I know, bdsm is sex of the mind and the body but not necessarily of the genitals. It can involve the genitals but it doesn’t have to. It’s about the chemical experience of strong sensations in your body. It’s about the power dynamic of doing that to someone or letting someone do that to you. Submitting your body to someone else’s desires is hotter than the sun.

I mean, I think. But I’m highly sexually submissive. I just don’t do that without serious negotiation. I think those kinds of roles are things that must be highly explicitly stated. I think the expectations must be verbally agreed on or (preferably) written down so that can be reviewed as necessary.

Power exchange means permission to have expectations about how you will be treated. Without some serious verbal negotiation (or written for an ongoing relationship) it is inappropriate to get into a situation where you have serious expectations of how you will be treated.

Folks just don’t actually generally sign on for that. Not when it comes to pain play and power imbalanced relationships. Not anymore. Once upon a time such things were normal and expected but things have changed.

Now it’s abuse. If someone tries to control you or hurt you without extensively asking your permission they are an abuser and you need help.

Things change.

We have to adapt. Even if our wiring doesn’t want to. Even if we would be much more successful predators if we were more up front about our hunting.

Side note. There are many women in this world I’d like to meet and talk to. How does it feel to live in your world and have this many partners? I’m kinda a freak in my world.

I’m not sure they want to talk to me. Maybe I’ll find out some day.

You never know what might happen. Life is long.

It is weird how with every passing year I feel like I have more and more I want to do before I die. I feel so much more urgency to be busy and active and accomplish things. Shit. I might live to be as old as 80. That’s a lot of fucking time to fill. I’d better make lists. Or I’m going to be old and be pissed I wasted so much time.

Sometimes I’m quite angry with myself for how I spent my childhood. Then I try to find compassion. If I had been out trying to exercise by myself as I moved around as a child the horror stories I experienced would have been much more frequent.

It’s ok that I hid. I had good reasons. I need to stop hating myself for everything I had to do to get through hell.

It’s over. I can change now. I can do something different.

I feel guilty, Noah. I feel like I’m letting you down. I also feel like I’ve been dragging and dragging and dragging for a long time. I think you are filling my bucket with everything you have going spare.

I need a deluge from somewhere. So I have a nice safe deity lined up who will fuck me senseless and maybe eventually get around to hurting me; a nice safe Professor who will beat the shit out of me and (we’ll see); Sarah who wants me to gleefully beat on her while telling stupid jokes; and a nice submissive who wants me to make him bleed and bleed.

That’s a deluge if ever I’ve produced one. That’s a lot of energetic stuff going on.

I’ve never managed a line up that felt this intense this… instantly… before. April is going to be god damn intense.

Oh yeah, and I’ll be playing with Noah and our normal sex life will continue. Cause that’s not going to change.

I have a very hard time feeling like this is ok. But whether it is ok or not I am going to do it. Because Noah is the only person who could stop me (other than my proposed partners losing interest) and he’s… ok with it.

Maybe that’s over stating. He’s nervous right now.

I get it. I’m being a selfish bitch.

I feel like I am about to god damn explode out of this little box that my life is allowed to be. This is not all of who I am. I am big. I am so many things. I am so many people. I want so many experiences at so many intensity levels. I want all of it. I want all of you.

I’m a little surprised I managed to damn this for four years. That’s my longest stretch of monogamy in my life.

Watch the riverbanks flood. Just wait. Soon there will be so much green.

Speaking of which: I’m very happy with how the tile mosaics are coming along. As long as these people I already dislike manage to install this well… I will live in a gorgeous house. I’m a lot more talented than I thought, which is kind of funny.

I can make beautiful things. No, not perfect. No I don’t make pictures that look like photographs. But I help people feel feelings.

That’s all I’m trying to do.

Different people encourage me to look at myself in different ways. Yes, they may call me filthy names, but they also concretely say, “Let’s look at x, y, and z and talk about it objectively.”

Because the filthy names are at uhm, my request. It’s ok. It gets me off.

So the whore thing is so complicated. On one hand I want to stop having this negative thing in my head where I keep coming back to this awful place of feeling bad about who I am. On the other hand if someone is hurting me and fucking me and whispers that I’m a whore and I should come…

I will. Over. And over. And over.

I kinda don’t want to give that up just cause it isn’t pc? It is super hot.

But I want it to stop being part of my negative tape when I am having a bad day. I want to stop randomly feeling bad about myself and calling myself a whore because of it. That’s dumb.

I want to change that.

But eliminating the word whore from my life entirely isn’t it.

That would be easier. Avoiding this powder keg would be easier. But then I wouldn’t get to orgasm like that and I’m not that pc.

 

Control, sex, identity

I’ve been a kinky motherfucker all of my life. I officially entered the bdsm community at 18, but I was doing kinky stuff before then. I’ve been giving oral sex for 31 years. I’ve been having PIV (penis in vagina intercourse) by choice for 22 years. This summer marks 16 years of my life in the bdsm community. In two more years I will have been in the bdsm community (to some degree or another) for half of my life. I feel very confident saying that being a pervert is part of my identity. Part of my identity I’m thoroughly comfortable with.

But things shift over time. The kind of pervert I am changes. The kinds of things I like has drifted considerably, especially since having kids.

In all these 16 years I have resolutely shied away from pursuing any kind of ongoing interaction where I was to be Dominant. That’s been a line for me. I like being toppy. I’m sadistic as fuck. But I’m not a Dominant. Nope, that’s not me.

I’m a serious control freak and I manage a lot of that by being the submissive/bottom/slave because then I’m the one who does the vast majority of the work and it goes how I prefer. I date lazy tops. Perfect.

But my life has changed a lot. I feel like I have changed.

There are a lot of people and situations in my life where I could railroad people and control the shit out of them. I’m home schooling my kids. I could micromanage the fuck out of them. I could require them to be submissive to me. Legally I have the right. Yesterday I read this post that reminded me of why I really don’t want my children to be submissive to me in any way.

I don’t know about you, but I fall into being a bully real easy. I have to be careful not to control people inappropriately. I have big opinions and big feelings and people who aren’t rock solid in themselves like being influenced. I could be a serious problem for a lot of people.

I try so hard to not be that. I keep my boundaries fiercely. I don’t boss people beyond very specific, small, limited places where I ask for consent. “Hey we want to organize this event, can I boss people around to get things done quickly?” At this stage of my life 9/10 times when I ask that people gratefully say, “Oh please do.” I’m good at figuring out a plan. I’m good at bossing people.

But I’m scared of it. I avoid it. I don’t seek it out in an ongoing way. I do not want a job where I have that kind of control over people. I am not stable enough. I am not kind enough. I make such bad assumptions.

I act without thinking and I hurt people when I do too much of that.

It isn’t safe nor appropriate for me to be too bossy with any of my friends or family members.

But lately I want to boss. I want to control. I want to have influence in an ongoing control-tastic way.

I got this email from my friend. The one I topped the other night. The one I’ve been thinking about a lot for a while now. The one who likes the really super intense play that I like.

I’m thinking about him way more than is good for my overall balance of life. Holy shit. What do I want from him?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So much. So little. Such specificity. I don’t want to try to meet all his needs. I want to negotiate a very small slice of his soul and control the ever loving shit out of that. As I hurt him really badly.

Anyone who tells me they really want to see me come up from biting them with blood dripping down from my mouth?

Shit. We need to get tested.

Cause I can’t draw blood until we have both been recently tested. I have kids. I have to care. I have too many friends who have contracted Hep C.

Cause if you have been dreaming for years about having me hurt you like that and I have been dreaming for years about hurting you like that and my husband doesn’t mind and your partner thinks it is hotter than the sun?

Uhm…

Why not?

I have worked very hard to cram all of the “me” that is a pervert into a very small box that I keep in the closet. I take it down for very rare special occasions when my kids are far away and kept safe with someone I trust completely.

I know that many people in the community are ok with somewhat fuzzy boundaries with their children. I am not comfortable with that. I need boundaries between them and my sex life constructed with steel beams and concrete reinforcement. This is a no-information/no-fly zone kiddos. Nope.

No, I won’t swing in the house with the kids.

Just no.

Not because I’m judging you. Because I’m trying to deal with the body and brain I have. I’m trying to deal with the highly traumatized DNA sequence I passed down.

Why does sex with Noah behind a closed door feel fine as long as we are quiet? Because I’m really thrilled that my kids think that sex is a natural part of growing up and finding a partner. I’m ok with modeling that.

I can’t model promiscuity. Not given my background.

You know what? My kids have flat told me they don’t want me to date. They know that we have friends who date outside their marriage. They don’t care about what other families do. They told me flat out that they don’t want to give up more time with me.

They are little for such a short time. I’ve already been a pervert for so long. I have already been a slut for so long. Those things will still be there when my children no longer want me like this. I have one shot in this lifetime to nail the kind of parenting relationship I want to have and that means giving my children far more than I want to give. It means giving up things I want really badly for a while.

Life is always about choices.

Noah could tolerate a lot more promiscuity and boundary pushing and dysfunction. But then I’d be teaching it to my kids.

No.

It isn’t that I think that modeling dating is inherently wrong. I truly don’t. Other people have very different lives.

I think I don’t know how to model long term stable relationships. I like picking up strangers and fucking them once or twice and moving on.

I don’t want to model what I like.

Even if I don’t want to stop liking it. I just don’t want to like it in front of them.

This feels so complicated. I don’t like being in the closet. I don’t like feeling like a liar. I don’t like feeling like I am being anything other than 100% brutally honest.

You know what? I am with my kids. I still have boundaries. They sometimes ask probing questions about my history or my experiences and I will either say something matter of fact like, “Yes I dated lots of people before I got married because I wanted to figure out what things were important to me” or “That’s something private that I will not discuss with you during your childhood. You need to grow up without having that information in your brain. You can find it out later.”

So I’m not… lying… but I only answer selectively.

Part of how I have kept these divisions is “I did a lot of stuff in the past I’m not doing now and I have no shame about any of it” and “Right now I’m doing the mom thing.”

But the “mom thing” isn’t all of who I am. Even the (incredibly hot) sex I have with Noah feels like part of the mom thing and…

It isn’t all of who I am.

I’ve gone through a lot of evolution of perception of self. Especially with regards to the word whore. (Small disclaimer in case anyone is new: I’m not talking about sex work. I’m talking about personal associations from formative abuse. Specifically I have to figure out how to get my brain to work around shit my father did. It’s complicated. I’m not knocking anyone or any careers.)

I’m going to need some way to refer to this person I’m playing with. I will need a code name. I’m not ready to make one up yet so this is awkward. I have blanket permission to write about him, but he values his privacy.

For a long time I genuinely saw myself as a kind of sacred whore. I had sex with a lot of people, many of whom… weren’t getting a lot of other play. I feel like there is a lot of emotional healing that comes through sexual intimacy and you can absolutely experience that with strangers. There is a validation and affirmation that doesn’t exist in other kinds of connections in my experience. But it only happens with a highly, highly experienced partner who knows how to read intricate body signals and ask the right questions.

I’m really good at it. I’m told. By an exceptionally long list of people. So I have to believe it is true.

This person I’m playing with likes a lot of degradation with his submission. He wants to be called a whore and I get that. There isn’t a lot I find hotter during sex than having someone grind into me and call me a whore… so I get it. Better if I’m being hurt while they are calling me a whore and fucking me. I’ll usually come right there.

I’m having big feelings about degrading him. He asked me a lot of specific, leading questions leading to his desire to be degraded. Oh my.

I want control so badly right now. I want to be able to boss someone around a lot. I want to really play with someone’s mind. I want to headfuck someone until I can tell them that down is up and up is down.

I know how.

I’ve taken lots of classes. I’ve practiced with lots of people who are considered experts. I trained for this.

But I’ve never actually gone and done it. I’ve always been terrified of this. I don’t have the right. I was a Wiccan too early in life. What you put out there comes back to you times three. Be very careful what you wish for and make happen in your life.

I want to crawl into someone’s head and change parts of how he feels about himself. Not in bad ways. I don’t want to hurt him. I want to… tweak him. Because it’s hot. Because controlling people is so fucking hot.

I don’t want to hurt his life. I don’t want to interrupt his relationship with his partner or his kids or his job or his other play partners or…

I just want this. This piece of control. That I can’t explain yet. I don’t know what it is I want so god damn badly right now.

Thinking about the fact that he has to wait for a letter in response to his email because I feel like making him wait …. I’m going to masturbate quite a few times today. This is hotter than fuck.

(Yes I have appropriate boundaries around it. Don’t worry, I can come quick. I only need like three minutes of privacy.)

The email he wrote me is earth shatteringly hot and I can’t quite quantify why. The depth of longing. The number of years this longing has been sustained for.

I met him when I was 19. He likes to say that I had him from, “And who the hell are you?” Apparently that was the first thing I said to him and he was done.

You know…

I feel like this is a bad rom com justification for intense longing wearing people down.

In this moment I all of a sudden understand one of my friends much better. She has a marriage in which they do not discuss politics because they are on opposite sides of the fence. This man and I… have very differing views. We are going to need a hard and fast rule that if one of us notices that we want to have an argument because it is veering near politics we will need a Shiny Change Of Topic. Because…. I know his views. I know his views about a lot of things don’t align with mine for very complicated and diverse reasons.

He isn’t someone I could have married and had kids with for a laundry list of reasons. Guess what? That role in my life is filled and I’m fucking thrilled with how it is going.

But there is this stuff that I really fucking like to do that I can’t do with my husband because holy shit is he not interested.

Noah’s ok with some biting and scratching because it indicates enthusiasm and he likes that. But he is not a masochist and he has decided limits and he gets mad if they are crossed. It isn’t hot.

He has offered, over the years, to do some bottoming if I feel like I just absolutely have to do it and I just… can’t hit him. Not like that. He doesn’t like it. I topped him once because he wanted to feel what it was like to go through a hook pull and he needed help from endorphins and it sucked for him.

I can’t ever do that to him again.

But I really really really like hurting people and it is much easier to control that impulse on a regular basis if I have occasional times when I get to feel like, “Yes, This Is The Right Time And Space”. It is easier to understand what boundaries feel like when you get to have lots of them in different places at different times for different reasons.

I’m horrified by the idea of putting mild pornography in front of an unknown vanilla audience. But I will take all my clothes off in a room full of strangers, crook my finger at a person I don’t know and proceed to fuck right there. I will go to Folsom Street Faire and tie up any person who wants to get tied up because I know I am safe and competent and I won’t hurt them and they will get to have a sensual experience.

Boundaries, motherfucker.

Some time ago one of my children was being friendly with a random other child while we were waiting in line somewhere. The kids were going to have to just stand there for an hour or more. After a few minutes of Eldest Child trying the mother looked at me and said, “Your children have no boundaries, do they?”

Whoa.

What a global statement. We are friendly in a way that is highly unusual outside of California. We are enculturated to being part of a place that treats everyone warmly and like we could be best friends and we just don’t know it yet.

This is where we have always lived. This is how we know how to be. It isn’t that we have no boundaries. I’m wary about going into peoples houses. The kids have a lot of boundaries around going into secured spaces with people they don’t know. They are only allowed to be taken in the cars of very specific people and we have passwords around that.

No boundaries, holy fuck.

We like to pass the time in line by being friendly. Some of those random chats have turned into beautiful friendships. You know what? On the road trip we stopped in Michigan to visit with a man I met in a grocery store. Because he was wearing a pervy t-shirt and I needed to ask him to join the Mountain View Perverts Society. (We weren’t a real thing, but there was a shocking density of pervert households in a small area; we knew each other.) At worst it usually means standing in line is less tedious.

No boundaries. Jeeez.

You know what? My husband neither wanted nor asked for sexual fidelity when he married me. Nor did I.

I said I would be faithful to our relationship. That doesn’t mean anything about who I fuck or beat. If I am faithful to what Noah wants from me… You know what? I’m better able to be present with Noah if I have other needs met by other people. It means I spend less time being frustrated with him that he completely fails to be a queer masochist. I mean, what the ever loving fuck did I do wrong in this life to end up married to a hetero top?

But you have to take the hand you are dealt. He wanted me. He wanted to do the kids and home schooling thing. He has been up for everything I want to do in life. He isn’t someone who has as much strong direction as me. He’s thrilled to have someone with a stronger rudder around.

But I can’t control him. I don’t boss him. And I can’t hit him.

I have someone I like, someone I love even, walking into my life and telling me that they want me to hurt them as much and as deeply and as harshly as I want to because they think I deserve to have that release in this lifetime.

Holy fucking shit. God that’s hot.

What do I mean when I say I don’t want to date? Because clearly that means something to me. I think it means: if my children have already known you as the kind of person who comes to one big party a year and maybe one dinner a year… that’s probably where it is going to stay. I don’t take much time away from my kids. I need a lot of alone time and that dominates the time I take away from my kids. If I start seeing someone else on my own time frequently… it would cut into how present I can be with my kids and that’s not ok. But I want to see him so much.

And I’m making him wait for letters before we negotiate more. Oh, he’s probably reading this. But that’s different, you know? There are a lot of things I’m not saying here. A lot of things that are going to be private negotiations and may not ever be written about because I’m not 100% sure I want my kids to be able to find that in the archive.

I want to do some pretty fucking evil things.

And he really wants to let me.

Why is that so bad?

I don’t know.

I’m having a hard time talking myself out of it. I don’t want to talk myself out of it. I want to ………

Oh god.

Yes, when we played last weekend it was not anywhere near what we’ve talked about so far. Yes it was sexier. Yes it was more gentle. I was trying to not squick the vanillas, ok?!

Boundaries, motherfucker.

God. This scene is going to be so hot I should sell tickets.

Hey, maybe it would be a way to get enough money to pay to rent a play space during a time when my babysitter is actually free… Ha.

No pictures though. He has privacy concerns.

Yes. I want to take you. Yes. I want to take you.

God the sex is complicated. I think…

I think that is going to have to be part of what makes this so fucking hot. I think my pussy won’t be involved. I’ve never had a stone relationship before. I have never before in my whole slutty life been interested in having a stone relationship. I don’t know what the fuck this means.

It isn’t that I think I won’t have sex with people other than Noah. He kinda holy-crap enjoyed the swinger thing and… yeah I can do that.

It isn’t “what I want” in the same way. But it is close enough and fun enough and sure.

I want to use you and use you and use you and fuck with your head and build you up and help you feel a whole lot more cocky about how wonderful you are with everything you have to offer. I just want this tiny piece of it. But I’ll talk a lot about how much I enjoy all the other parts of you. I want you to be whole.

I want you to be a whole you. I think I can feed part of you.

I think you have already given me something.

I’m sleeping a lot better.

I told the woo Dr I need a month off from these supplements. I need to figure out how my body is doing after what we have been doing.

A lot of my pain issues are improving. I can feel that most of my current ache is because of current unfamiliar strenuous labor. My hands are getting wrecked. I really ought not be typing.

But I can’t say all of these things to Noah. And I need him to know that I’m thinking them. Because I need to be as absolutely transparent with Noah as I can be and in most of our lives… we just can’t talk about this stuff.

I don’t want to “date” in the next ten years. I want my kids and Noah to take up pretty much all of my time. I need that safety. I need it. I don’t know how much time I can carve away from that in order to come out with the relationship I want to have with my kids.

Don’t worry, I’m going to launch these puppies. Then I’ll have more, ahem free time. But a lot of that will go to Noah as his reward for supporting me and providing for me so well for so long.

I don’t know what is left.

I kinda want to find out.

I feel so alive.

Peace

This morning I had a peaceful moment. One of those true, Zen moments of “I am happy and this is where I want to be.” Eldest Child woke up to use the restroom too early. I was awake doing chores, like usual. She asked me if I would climb in bed with her so she could sing me a lullaby. Twinkle Twinkle was the song of choice. Then she spent a while talking to me about why she likes me.

This is kind of a habit I have with the kids. I don’t put them to bed all the time, probably not even half the time these days at home. Maybe a quarter of the time? But we had the road trip and all the years before that of shared bed times. At bed time, what we do is we cuddle up close and spent 15-20 minutes talking about all the reasons we like each other. “You did ____ and I was so impressed with your thoughtfulness. You did ______ and I was shocked to see that you have made that developmental jump. I thought that was a (age inflation) thing and I’m really wow’ed. You said ______ word today and that was surprising because I didn’t know you knew that word!”

We bookend that with waking up to morning snuggles. During morning snuggles we talk about what we need to do today and how the schedule will work.

I can understand why my children insist I’m not an asshole and I just have bad moments. I don’t understand it so much from other people. Sometimes I feel like my children get to have a relationship with someone that no one else even gets to meet.

Sometimes I am capable of seeing myself as kind, giving, and loving.

That doesn’t change the fact that I’m an asshole.

Contradiction is necessary for life. For survival. You can be kind and an asshole.

Why am I so convinced I’m an asshole? Because I lawyer up fast when my contractors give me trouble. Because I find that swearing at men really harshly is one of the best ways to convince strange men I’m not interested in their attention. Because I find that sometimes it is necessary to kick people really hard to get them to let go and I’m willing to do it. Because I’m going to keep talking about why the word whore is eating my brain even though people with sex work careers twitch and feel really upset about it.

Want to hear something wild? Yesterday one of the most famous sex workers of our era gave me permission to use the word whore however I need to in my processing. She says if anyone questions me again I can send them to her.

That is… incredibly validating. Wow. Thanks.

I’m not sure I’m ever going to pull that card. But I may print out that tweet and cut it up small and put it in my wallet next to the permission slip from Noah. Just so that I think about it.

I have permission to look at this however hard I need to in order to get over it. She said so.

I am so fucking weird about permission. I’ve spent my whole life cringing, crying, and hurting myself because I felt that was the only thing I was allowed to do without permission. I need permission to stop. I need permission to feel something else about myself.

Why does that have to be the default? I mean, blame your parents yada yada, why does that have to be my default?

Why do I have to assume, in every moment, that I am the least valuable person present and if someone should die it should be me?

Not that I want to get to the point of wanting to sacrifice other people for myself.

Wait, maybe that is it.

I have never known a white person with really high self esteem who isn’t willing to throw other people under the bus for their own advancement. I have known people of color with high self esteem whom I have never seen sacrifice a friend. I know people of color who are exploitive assholes, too.

I’m trying to think through my white friends… y’all make very self absorbed choices. I do too. I’m not sitting on a high horse. I’m sitting flat on the ground. I’m not high and mighty here. I’m trying to figure out how this works.

I am willing to throw people under a bus if I feel I have to do so in order to be effective.

That’s why I’m an asshole. I need accurate labeling so other people know they have to protect themselves from me.

want to help you. I will try to help you. But if I feel I have to be effective in some area for Reasons…

I’m a selfish piece of shit. That’s why I’m alive. I’m willing to say that Safeway doesn’t matter as much as me, I’m stealing food. I’m willing to say, “Being around people who make choices like x is so problematic to me that I will bug and bug and bug people who make choices like that until they don’t want to know me any more.”

I’m an asshole because I make a lot of assumptions about people and I don’t check my privilege nearly often enough. I’m trying to get better. This is hard.

My life has been kind of hard to adjust to.

I spent my childhood moving like a ghost through different communities. I never stayed long enough to belong. I lived in a lot of neighborhoods where we were the only white family. I grew up feeling like being white was a bad thing. Know why? White people don’t care about their kids very much. That was how I experienced it as a child. I don’t think that is literally true across the board. That was my experience. In white neighborhoods there were always packs of unsupervised children doing horrifyingly inappropriate things. In neighborhoods of color there might be much older teenagers or 20-somethings causing trouble, but the kids were god damn watched.

I was chased out of so many homes for having bad behavior. I was told I was a bad girl dozens, maybe a hundred times.

It’s funny how my memories of these things change and drift. I remember them very differently as my understanding of the situation changes.

When I was 21ish I honestly didn’t remember all those lectures about being bad. I had kinda blocked them out. I knew I was bad but it was a fog hanging over my life. I didn’t have all those disparate voices going through my head.

As a parent watching my children be children (by which I mean breaking rules and fucking up) I hear those people in my head over and over more and more clearly. Oh. That was why they said that.

Click.

Now I get it.

Shit.

I have always felt like I was living in many ages at once. But I feel like my future selves have changed a lot over my life. My ability to perceive who I could be has changed.

These days I can picture having grandchildren who scornfully tell my children that they should be more patient, like Grammie. I will giggle. My children will say, “YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT SHE WAS LIKE TO GROW UP WITH.” I will giggle.

Do you have any idea what having that vision in my head means to me? I have the belief that I might be able to arrive at having the kind of experience of being in my body that I want to have. I believe that I might get to the point of being actually regulated and calm.

I have hope for something I was not capable of dreaming up 20 years ago.

It’s amazing what ten years of safety can do for a body. I see it in myself. I see it in my children. That is something that home schooling does for me that isn’t necessary for almost anyone else I know.

I require this specific time to be set aside in my adult life where the entire point of my day is to model how to have big emotions, get them under control, deal with them appropriately when they come up, and then keep working.

Not suppressing. Not denying. Not minimizing. Not avoiding until it comes crashing down on you at some inappropriate time in the future. Your feelings matter. They live in you and they serve a purpose. If you ignore them in the moment you will pay a price later. There are times and places where emotional displays are not appropriate, but get that stuff out as fast as possible so it doesn’t become a poison.

I am grateful every day for the life I am leading right now.

I have the safety, the money, the access to care providers, and the education to do something about the trauma in my body.

That is magical. This should be available to everyone who has experienced trauma. We would be a better world.

People deserve to be seen in context and understood. Most people who seem “crazy” to you wouldn’t seem so crazy if you knew more about their story. I tell my children all the time, “Weird just means you aren’t used to it yet; eventually it is just normal.”

My mom used to say, “The only norma people are the ones you don’t know very well.”

One of my neighbors is stepping up the offer of maternal-nature-friendship. I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, Thank You Oh Universe, You Sure Do Like To Hear My Calls, Don’t You?

On the other hand… I’m scared of blowing up what we currently have if she finds out more about me. I’m not exactly the uhhhh conservative type and she is quite shy, scared, and sheltered. I don’t want to hurt her. She will need a lot of boundaries around the kinds of things she can handle hearing and I’m not sure how to find those boundaries without fucking up pretty badly. Once you say something it can never be unsaid.

We have a really solid, positive relationship. Losing it would be brutal. This feels really tricky. Our families are fairly strongly connected at the level we have now. I feel really like this is a big risk. Much bigger than telling all the strangers on the internet about my raunchy sex life and habit of beating people up for fun.

I’m kinda weird.

My superego is fucking developed at this point, ok? I’m growing up.

I’m an asshole and she is not. She wants to mother me. What will she do when she finds out I have approximately 500 x’s as much life experience as her?

There is a thing I think about. When I was in the bdsm community I was really serious about learning all I could as fast as I could. I played a lot with a lot of people. Basically I spent more time on bdsm than I spent on my college education, which I was pursuing simultaneously. Much Much Much more time on bdsm.

I was a serious slut and it was really fun and I have no regrets. I learned what I wanted to learn from that experience. I’m shocked at how often I find ways to apply the lessons I’ve learned, not in ways you’d expect.

I had more life experience at 25 than many people have at 50. It isn’t hyperbole, it is simple fact. I say yes to almost anything that comes up. I know very diverse people in many communities. I’m a moody bastard with a short attention span.

I’ve done a lot of things. It is something I notice when I meet new people these days. I sound like a lying braggart. Nope. I got receipts. I did all that. Why? Because I never felt like I had a better choice than to do what I was doing so I did it all in. As soon as something stops feeling like the best choice in the moment I break down, fall into a deep depression. Go home. Hurt myself until I figure out that the boundaries required in that community are not things I can maintain long-term. Then I heal. Then I try again.

It goes faster and faster as I age and get boundaries carved out of granite. It is harder to change them. I am less tolerant of my internal, “I need to conform by doing x in this environment” sensor and I just flee.

I have a home now. I have less reason to tolerate your bullshit rules. Wanna know why I know they are bullshit rules? Cause this ain’t my first rodeo. Don’t worry, I think the rules in my house are bullshit too. They are all weird and arbitrary. They are made to suit the moods of whichever asshole in the vicinity is loudest.

I know.

I used to know a man who liked to say, “I’m the only psycho in this relationship” or maybe he said he was the only one who gets to be crazy? I may be misremembering. I’ll cop to that.

I need to be the biggest asshole in the space I’m in. So Noah is an asshole, but I know that I’m much more likely to be the one to bulldoze than him.

It works for us. Picture a heart emoji here, but I have technically banned them so this will have to do.

He doesn’t think I’m an asshole. That’s part of why this works. I think we are both assholes and I’m just a bigger one. But he’s all mellow and tolerant so it works out. Do you however you need to, ok?

I’m going to be kinda passive aggressive here and say: if you are one of Noah’s friends… this is a great time to ask him to go out some time. He needs to talk. To more people than just me right now cause life is like that sometimes.

I can’t fill his tank as much as he needs me to right now. Because I’m dealing with the remodel and and and. His job is kinda hard.

I need to go beat the shit out of people. I don’t know what he needs. But right now, he’s wilting like a flower and that’s a serious bummer. I don’t know what it is that is missing right now, but clearly all the right nutrients aren’t in place.

This is the kind of micromanaging, paying attention that I want in my life. It is why I appreciate the people who have stuck with me and really got to know me so much. Because I’m more pushy like this by the year. Because people do it more with me. It’s a careful balance. How much controlling and influencing other people should we do?

I really don’t know where those boundaries ought to be. I’m not pulling up Noah’s email account and making plans for him. That’s over the line.

Where is the line?

Everyone is different. I want you to get to be who you need to be. I want to figure out who I need to be and I want to just do the shit out of it.

This feels like baby steps towards self love, doesn’t it? This morning feels good. I have to say that these piles of tile are inspiring. I may be jaunting off to get more sparkly tiles today. I’m really excited about the snow wall. I want to build that first because I have so much white and it would be nice to get it mostly used up and out of the way so I see how much I need to still buy in terms of tile for the rest of the bathroom. I really can’t tell yet.

It depends on how high up the walls I want to go, right? We’ll see!

Youngest child’s half bathroom is spring. Other half bathroom is summer. The bathing room is going to have autumn and winter. I can’t wait to look at the sparkly snow while I take baths in candle light at night. That will be so beautiful.

I’m serious my friends, if you want to come take a bath… let me know.

I’m thinking hard about how I want to make the tree of life that will climb up the wall over the bath tub. I need to look at more pictures. That will probably be that last bit I design because much of it might be painted, I haven’t decided.

I know that “traditionally speaking” you want flat walls. I’m not going to have flat walls with perfectly level tile. It’s going to be pretty rough and it will be on purpose and structured and artistic. I think it will work.

Oh please God let this work cause this puppy is going to be expensive if I fuck up.

Go big or go home, bitch.

Oh goodness what did I get myself into?!

Have I told you that the floor will have a stone path lined with green tiles to look like grass?

I’m having SOOOOOOOOOO MUCH FUN.

If only the roof weren’t uhm, being tricky. We are still negotiating. I’m blathering on Twitter but I won’t rehash it here. Just… gotta keep walking on. I’m trying to not be angry. At this point all of the guys in the company have apologized for making decisions without me when clearly they made the wrong choice at a critical juncture. I had preferences and they didn’t ask. Even though I’ve told them over and over and over I want to be asked.

Ok. Trying to move on. Have to get this shit finished. If it’s beautiful… I will still write positive reviews with caveats about how I had to be fierce in advocating for myself.

I made it very clear that from here on out the crew was not to dump their lunch garbage all over and leave it here for weeks. Saw blades are all over the ground and that’s not cool. My lawyer was at this meeting. I should stop talking about it for all kinds of reasons.

I wanted to write something down here for documenting purposes. Instead, I hit cut’n’paste and sent it to my lawyer.

That seems smart just now.

Past self, you picked this woman out based on proximity and hope. Well done!

Today will be a good day, I think. I hope. I believe. Oh yeah, a friend asked if she could come over to dinner. I should tell Noah. Ha. Surprise. We have six people coming over for dinner.

Roll with it. Life flows like that. If people ask to come over for dinner the next night and I have no plans…. I’m weak. I have no willpower for that kind of rejection. Because you hit my sweet spot. Basically no output of energy and lots of input of attention. Yeah, you can do that. Sounds awesome. I have to cook anyway. Don’t worry. I always have enough food around.

You never know who might be coming to dinner.

 

Trauma, victimization, & consent

Good golly. Woke up to great sex in the middle of the night and now I’m not sleepy. So instead I’m thinking about trauma and victimization, like a normal person. What? That’s not weird, right?

I think that trauma can happen without being a victim and I think that being a victim can happen without trauma. I think that consent is a nearby Venn circle that overlaps both in weird ways.

I think it is completely possible to consent to things that traumatize the fuck out of you for the rest of your life. I think it is possible to be a victim, to have your consent taken away and not be traumatized. I think it is possible to be a victim and be traumatized and to consent at the same time.

Why?

Because I feel like I’ve lived about fifteen lives in one and I’ve seen a lot of shit. Not just that happens to me. I pay a lot of attention to trauma and assault and rape.

Why are these things different?

I’m not going to look up the dictionary definitions this time. Connotative/denotative meanings… I’m defining for myself today.

Trauma is about a physical response in your body to something bad/scary/overwhelming. It’s a physiological process. You can be traumatized by things you consent to and you can be traumatized by things you do not consent to. People vary dramatically in what will traumatize them. Some people are genuinely not traumatized by rape. It is a bad thing that happens and they move on. Others… they are permanently physically impacted by their experiences. Something being traumatic or not tells you little about scale.

Being a victim is about whether or not you want them to happen. I think you can consent to things and still be a victim. If you feel your consent is coerced, if you are not really safe enough to say no… you can consent and still be a victim. I don’t know how much I think that your ability to get yourself out of a situation or not plays in with victimization.

I am pretty sure my father would be able to get away with saying that there were times I “consented” to what he did with me. But I was still a victim. Why? Because it should not have been happening. It was a crime and it damaged me. It didn’t matter whether I consented or not because I had no ability to understand what I was consenting to.

Adult rape. Paul. Situation: I was in my 20’s, at a sex party while on drugs. I didn’t want unprotected sex and he did. I did not consent to unprotected sex. I repeatedly said no. I wasn’t able to physically resist (yes, I know that was my choice) but I was saying no. I was conscious. I was trying to prevent it. That means I think that legally I was the victim of a crime. Is it one of the more traumatic experiences of my life?

Hahahahahaahahahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaa no.

I don’t feel particularly traumatized by that rape. Not really. I don’t wake up to nightmares of his face. I don’t feel terrified of what will happen if we run into one another (we could; this is a small valley).

So, no consent, no real trauma, yes victimization.

The kid who kicked me in the throat. We had a habit of play fighting/wrestling. I think that he did not intend to land a kick on my throat. He was just a kid who lacked finesse, control, and understanding. So quasi-consent. I think technically it was an assault. Do I feel like a victim? Not really. I think it was an assault but not a crime because it was an accident. Do I feel traumatized?

Ok, I do feel kinda haunted by the swollen throat feeling… because it reminded me so much of my brother. I don’t think I was traumatized so much by the incident but from the feeling of, “Oh my fucking god I DO NOT WANT a tracheotomy.”

I feel… I feel feelings about the mom. I don’t think that she victimized me. I don’t feel traumatized. But I feel like she is someone who would push me down in front of a bus and then tell me it was my fault. I feel like every warning signal in my body tells me that any woman who says, “You weren’t assaulted and if you were it was your fault” is so fucking dangerous I wish I was in a different time zone.

Is that about trauma, victimization, or consent? Call it the Spidey sense I developed after other assaults. I don’t want to stand near someone who has such an attitude. It’s a warning shot.

Quite literally, that is the kind of woman who uhm… yeah. That’s why we are where we are as a society. Congratulations to us.

Rich white woman hears her son commits assault? Blame the victim! Can’t be my perfect baby! (Ok this happens in other demographics too with other gender combinations. But I’m feeling pissy!)

Guess what? White kids are pieces of shit too. Just sayin’.

Not that I actually think that kid is a piece of shit. I think he isn’t being guided in the ways he should be guided and that’s tragic.

If someone comes to me and tells me that my children did something violent, awful, or otherwise worthy of judging the shit out of… my response won’t be “No they didn’t.” My response is going to be, “Ok, slow down and start at the beginning. I think I need to hear the whole story.”

I’m pretty sure that my kids can fuck up. Just sayin’.

I think I have gotten to the point where I am a relatively decent person. I started out lying, stealing, hitting people, breaking things, starting house fires, stealing cars…

I’m not in a position to judge. People fuck up.

Why am I thinking about these things? Because I’m trying to judge myself. Because I’m trying to figure out if I am as bad as I think. I’m trying to figure out what being so bad means. I’m trying to figure out how to stop hurting people.

But you know what? I think I’ll always hurt people. I’m not going to stop talking about the fact that I exist. Knowing that I’m here is going to hurt people.

I can’t really do anything about that.

If your safety depends on my being invisible then I guess you don’t get to be safe. Sorrynotsorry.

I think that when the vast majority of people say “the world is like” they really mean “I know a dozen or so people who are like”. The world is a god damn big place. Guess what? We are all weird and different. I draw great comfort from that; it’s why I get to be alive.

I have heard a saying about teachers coming into your life when you need them. I think that people tend to have the experiences they go looking for.

Some people want to be ignored. Some people want to be noticed. Some people want to have intense interactions. Some people want to hide.

Ever noticed how each person is completely convinced that the world they live in is “the world”? Ever notice how they do it by conveniently ignoring the people they walk past that completely contradict their view? Confirmation bias, my friends.

I think one of the most monstrous things about me is how loudly I’m willing to turn up my reality distortion filter. I’m experiencing the world I need to experience. Whatever that means. I’m going to tell you about it. Even if it fucks with your world view. Cause honey badger don’t give a shit. Yes, you think life shouldn’t be about violence and pain. Good for you.

I’m woo enough that I more or less believe we pick the lives we have because there are lessons to gain here. I’m either paying for being Hitler or for some insane reason I picked a life where I was going to have to learn as many painful lessons as possible.

A kind woman shared an Eve Ensler video with me about embracing your inner girl. I think she (Eve) had some good things to say but I was struck by something. (I’ve never seen the Vagina Monologues.) Eve spent a lot of time talking about the pain she’s seen… but she kept bringing herself back to it. “I’m going to tell you about this awful thing that happened to my daughter. I adopted her.” Uhm.

You really could have told the story without making yourself the hero.

Even if that is the relationship that is happening you could have supported her without centering yourself.

That. That’s what I don’t want to do with the incest research. I don’t want it to be about how these stories make me feel. I am going to be traumatized by hearing them, yes. So fucking what?! No one asked me to listen. This is my personal thing I’m doing. The work is my personal thing. The stories I hear are not my personal stories. I’m going out into the world looking for these stories–it is the very opposite of victimization. Even if it is traumatic, it will be done with full consent. How do I center the work and the stories and not myself? How do I tell the story without it being about my trauma. I’m kinda obsessed with my trauma and shit. Well, maybe I’ll always be allowed to whine here about how I’m feeling but when I speak publicly it will not be about me. I think that’s a reasonable boundary? Am I ever going to feel like it is ok to talk about me?

With the Impact instructors there is a tense/weird parting thing at the end of the class. They cannot have any social contact with students for a year after a class. And when they talk about it they all go really stone faced in unison. “We are protecting ourselves.”

What does it mean to do work with traumatized people and be traumatized by the experiences and not get muddy about who is hurting whom?

Well I guess I’m going to fucking find out. How much you wanna bet there will be drama galore for me around this?

Not “drama” but intense emotional surges.

Like I do. Sigh.

Signing off.

Totally flooded.

I haz big feelings. My stomach hurts. But I feel like I worked out this awful thing that has been in my neck/shoulder for years. I feel like I did a major trauma release in this class. That’s kinda intense. Exposure therapy for the win.

This is what exposure therapy means. The attackers are safe guys in suits who maintain their distance so they can maintain their aura of scary. But they are monitored by women the whole time. It isn’t some guy deciding to do something to a woman when he feels like it and she should have to react right. That’s not exposure therapy. Exposure therapy means a female coach kneeling with her face next to your face whispering, “Remember to breathe. Stop. Wait for the moment. You can do this.”

Stop calling real life abuse exposure therapy. It isn’t. Ok, digression over.

My second experience at Impact was fairly different from the first. I didn’t have a friend in the class. It felt like the group warmed up slower but then made more genuine connections once we did warm up. Everyone started off tentative and not too chatty but by the final day we were pretty friendly. That felt nice.

I took a risk the morning of the third day. I said that the cheering wasn’t making it through to me during my fights and I really needed the line to get louder and more encouraging because it’s scary to fight in quiet. I feel alone. I have to say, those women came through once I made a specific request. They did great.

I didn’t ask for more than one extended fight this time. I literally just… couldn’t. By the time I got through the one extended fight my body was saying, “Let the men make them easy from here on out.”

The guys… they have to work ridiculously hard to do an extended fight with the people who really want blood. They do extended fights to teach women that even when you feel exhausted (this is as close as they will get to the exhaustion of a fight where you will be dealing with someone hitting you) and tired and worn out you can still defend yourself. I think I have a better understanding of fighting from a place of exhaustion from the get go, so I didn’t need the exercise this weekend.

I chose to leave a few spoons in my drawer. Because today I seriously need to pay attention to the kids and if I had left it all out on the mat I would spend today in bed crying. I just couldn’t. This wasn’t a real fight to the death so it would have been inappropriate to wear myself out that hard so I couldn’t hang with the kids.

I pay attention to these things.

Topic switch. Back to hitting.

Yes, I think (upon further reflection) what I am doing with Noah unconsciously probably would be better termed a tap or a light smack… but that is still putting my hands on someone else’s body in a way I’m not paying attention to. In a way that he chooses to describe as being hit. Because he gets that choice. I need to stop it.

Just like people don’t get to tell me that when the kid kicked me in the throat it wasn’t assault. Yes, actually it was an assault. I’m not going to prosecute because I don’t think the kid had malicious intent. But it was an assault.

It is possible to hit and not be causing (permanent) damage. Not be hurting people. Still be a problem. Still need to stop.

I need to have so much fucking control over my body that I do not put my hands on people at all unless I am doing it in a way that I am highly conscious and in control of exactly what I’m doing. I can’t be muddy. I can’t be like “Close enough is good enough.” Not with what I want to do with my life.

So maybe I’m over reacting and maybe I’m understanding how much work I have left on this problem. I need to stop hitting people. Entirely. 100000% unless someone is directly threatening my physical safety.

I know I spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to live in gray areas but this is a black and white thing. I’ve done too much hitting in my life. I need to get this under control.

I mean, not that I’m going to cancel that nice date with my friend. I’m going to do everything in my power to get to the point where I only hit people (even lightly) when they say, “Pretty please”. Or they start a fight.

I spent a lot of this class thinking about escalation. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. I escalate.

I know it’s all victim blamey and shit, but yeah a lot of the fights, a lot of the rapes kinda happened because I had no ability to deescalate. It hurts seeing that so plainly over time. I am not good at managing peoples emotions in a deescalating way. I’m good at cranking the volume up. I stimulate feelings I don’t settle them. This is a problem.

I think about things like the neighbor who has been sexually harassing me. Did I encourage him? I don’t think so. 90%+ of the time I talk to him my kids are standing right there and I don’t encourage displays of sexuality in front of my children. So I’m inclined to believe this is his desperate fantasy that he isn’t dead yet and he’s still sexually interesting instead of this being about me. But do I deescalate properly when he brings stuff up? Mostly I call the kids and keep walking when he gets rude. What else should I be doing?

Well I think kicking the crap out of him then telling him I cannot be in control if a man grabs me may have been effective. He’s keeping more physical distance these days.

But is he going to creep again? My guess is yes. Because creepers gonna creep. Does it make it all my fault if it happens again because I’m stupid enough to talk to him?

You know what? I get to walk around my god damn neighborhood without having to physically fight off unwanted sexual advances. That’s fucking ridiculous. No this isn’t my fault and I should not have to avoid walking down my own god damn street to avoid being sexually harassed. That’s not reasonable. If he starts shit I’m not the one escalating. He is. I’m just not going to fucking be passive. I’m very friendly and non-threatening with him. I have no desire to hurt him. I’m just not going to let him do shit to me I don’t want to have done.

That has to be ok. No matter how old he is. No matter how much I like him. No matter if I know any man ever again.

I get to say yes to everything that happens to my body. Or I get to fucking hurt you. That’s the deal.

I’m getting closer to the point where I feel I could actually do it in a fight.

It was hard having Noah there. I asked him if he thought I could stop him if he tried to rape me at this point. He isn’t convinced.

I need to take more classes. It is 100% my goal to be able to so deeply scare men that they do not believe they could successfully do that again.

Not because I want to hurt men. Because I’m not going to be raped again. I’m done. The passive has been raped right the fuck out of me. I’ve taken all I can take.

It is quite literally my goal to die before letting someone rape me again. I want to fight to the point where someone has the choice to kill me or leave me alone.

I’m done.

Something broke and it can’t be fixed.

To be fair, Noah didn’t see my extended fight. He saw the easy peasy fights the instructors give you to blow off steam so you walk out of the room feeling strong so you don’t leave feeling like you should walk in front of a bus. They plan this shit. They know the roller coaster they put people on. Noah didn’t see quite how effective I am at kicking peoples skulls in. I practice from a variety of angles. I’m semi-worried that I will actually kill someone because I’m going to be kicking with such incredible force and anger. I may well shove someones face into their brain.

I won’t lose sleep over that. Ok, yes I will. I will be convinced I’m a monster who should be killed. Maybe I’ll go to jail and think that’s fair.

But I won’t be god damn raped that day.

I feel dangerous and horrible. But yes I am prepared to use deadly force to prevent someone from raping me again.

I have to believe I deserve that or I need to die today because I cannot endure another rape. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t.

I’m done. I have to believe I am allowed to kill someone to stop them if necessary. I know that in an actual fight I will have to use the minimum amount of force necessary to stop a fight. I know that. The chances I will get to a fight that results in death are incredibly freakishly low. Only I’m going to pursue a career that will make people hate me with the power of the sun.

So maybe my chances aren’t vanishingly small. Maybe they just aren’t that high?

I don’t know that I am yet at a point where I am capable of holding the adrenaline in and just doing the necessary hurting.

During one of my fights the suited instructor literally ran out of the room to get away from me because I was chasing too much.

I mean, I didn’t chase him off the mat. But I did take steps in his direction. I hear that the expression on my face was uhhhhh… terrifying.

I don’t know if that is a regular schtick of theirs to try and break the tension because it’s funny. Or if he felt like that is actually how an attacker would respond because holy shit.

I don’t know.

You never know.

They call the rape prevention moves “reversals”. Because you are reversing the power. Those are the ones where you have to stay still on the floor and use physics and it’s scary and complicated and fairly precise. I find them horrifyingly triggering.

It’s really hard to say, “I tried that and what happened was…” I failed. That’s what happened. I failed when I tried to do that. I didn’t prevent a rape that day.

Ahhh. I tried to move long before I felt weight. There was no physics to help me. Fuck everything. Well, specifically he fucked me. After slamming my head into the ground so hard I saw stars. I stopped fighting.

I don’t know if it would be different today. I don’t actually feel confident. That was just a fucking class. I was chanting to myself the whole time, “There is no chance this man would actually rape you. There are witnesses. He’s wearing very difficult clothing. This isn’t real.” Because I wanted to run screaming I was so fucking freaked out. But… that means it isn’t that real in my body.

Would I be able to access this when I’m scared? I’ve worked so hard for so many years to break the freeze response. I’m tired of going numb. But it is a genuine survival skill. I have worked hard to make it less likely I will survive.

I’m ready to die or assert myself. One or the other. But I do not yet know for sure that I’d win.

It is hard believing that I would kill to defend myself and that is part of why I am a disgusting person. I don’t know that I really believe I have the right. I am bad. I want to hurt people.

Not really. I’m just god damn done letting them hurt me.

That’s not true either. I do want to hurt people. I want to hurt people who like being hurt because it released kinetic energy from my body and it allows me to be more calm and gentle when necessary and appropriate.

Hitting is all of these things. It is tapping Noah when I shouldn’t. Even though it doesn’t hurt I’m touching someone without consent in a way that can be described as hitting. My friend who is inviting me to a lovely session of testicle kicking, that’s hitting too. It is completely consensual. He’s going to have a good time, I’m going to have a good time–it’s going to be fun! And being willing to beat someone unconscious for trying to rape me.

It’s all hitting. It is all violence. But do they mean the same things? Should they be treated the same way legally? Should they be treated like trauma because “hitting”?

Everyone gets to decide for themselves what is traumatizing. I’ve done bdsm scenes that were WAY more intense/painful/fucking out there than my rapes. My rapes traumatized me. My rapes were an action that I did not consent to happening to my body in a way that proved to me that I do not have the right to have agency over myself or my life. My bdsm scenes were done with friends and they were fun. Even if they were painful and scary. I knew what I was signing on for. I did it on purpose. I did it with full force and vigor and choice.

That makes all the difference.

I don’t feel traumatized by the throat kick. I feel like I learned something about boundaries.

If you fuck up and assault someone… that isn’t the end of the world. How you respond afterwards is what matters.

If you fuck up and assault someone on purpose… that’s different.

I genuinely believe there are accidental assaults all the time. Just like there is involuntary manslaughter.

Ok, I have one specific complaint about the class this time: I really didn’t appreciate the “boogeyman homeless guy” thing. That fucking pissed me off. The vast majority of assaults are someone you know. Leave the fucking homeless guys alone. They are doing their fucking best and I’m god damn tired of the nastiness of housed people.

Being homeless does not mean you are a god damn rapist.

That’s the attitude though. Homeless guys are creepy and scary. Do you know why they creep you out? Because you feel like they aren’t like you and that’s gross. I feel like they are like me and they are in a hard place right now.

I don’t need to feel scared of someone who has so little power and authority in life compared to me. Am I prepared to defend myself if someone does start something? Sure. But I’ve been interacting with homeless people for decades. I’ve done so all over the country and in other countries.

I’m not scared of homeless people. They are scared of me.

Why? Because they know I can call the cops and have them put in jail. That’s how the power dynamic works. Can I really? Would the cops do it? Maybe. But it’s pretty likely. If any of you dressed-like-you-live-in-a-house-people called the police on a homeless person there is a high chance the homeless person is getting arrested.

For vagrancy. For loitering. For trespassing. For intimidation. For assault.

Even if that assault was accidental. Who cares? It’s a homeless person. They are creepy and icki. We don’t want them around, prosecute.

Stop. Calling. The. Cops. On. Creepy. Homeless. People.

Unless you see them commit a serious crime, just leave them the fuck alone. Ok? They have enough god damn problems without whiny people harassing them.

(I’m not really talking to a specific person or even the folks in the class. I’m mad at the universe over this one.)

I’M TALKING TO THOSE ASSHOLES ON NEXTDOOR.

“I saw a homeless person on my street so I called the police.” I hope you die slowly in a lot of pain.

Like those assholes who called the cops on me in Virginia. I looked suspicious. I had out of state license plates and camping gear. Clearly I was up to no good.

This is my cranky face.

It is weird trying to find a place where compassion and the right to break your face live right side by side. Because in being able to defend myself like this… I’m trying to have compassion for myself. I’m allowed to say that 12 rapists in one life is enough. I’m allowed to say that I was 25 when I was last raped and that’s god damn when it ended. I’m allowed to absolutely fucking harm anyone who tries again.

That is what compassion for myself means. Maybe another woman could passively permit a rape and not kill her attacker and later prosecute and that would be the most “ethical” choice of all… or something.

I can’t absorb any more.

I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I can’t.

How do you get ready to actually be able to kill someone if you have to? I don’t want to. I really don’t want to.

Shit I already feel guilty that people seem to kill themselves after dealing with me.

(Yes, I know I am not “at fault” for any of these suicides. Life is complicated.)

In class someone thought it was funny to make a joke about fire. I sure know how to shut down jokes about fire. It was asked “Does anyone have any trauma around fire? No? Good….” Then I raised my hand. “Yeah, my brother self immolated.”

I bring all the fun jokes to an end.

God I suck.

Hell, I’m not even saying to stop using the joke. It’s ok to jokingly tease a group of people and tell them the final test will involve jumping through a fiery hoop. That’s not a bad joke. That’s not a real threat.

That’s ok.

But god I can kill any joke.

I am so not funny that it is really really funny. It is to the point where my litany of traumas is becoming almost hysterical. I have a trauma for any god damn situation.

It is kinda funny sometimes.

WHEN WILL THE INSANITY END?!?!!? is most of the joke.

Well, I’m still having an extraordinary life… but I’d say it is mostly no longer traumatic. I have boundary violation issues every so often that must be managed.

I don’t think I’ve been traumatized in while. I think the last trauma was severing with my family. (I think I traumatized Sarah after that… but that’s a different discussion.)

Why do I split hairs like this? Because my shrink tells me to break everything down into its smallest compartments and then sort them out.

What is hitting? What is violence? What is trauma? These things are so broad and yet so very specific.

Random defensive pissiness: I read an article yesterday. Don’t remember where or by whom and I don’t care. The person was pretty much saying, “Stop talking about your white privilege because you are just grand standing. If you were really doing anything to dismantle structural racism you would do it silently.” Oh fuck you.

I’m trying to fund the revolution, motherfucker. I am putting my money where my mouth is. I do more with every year and I track it better so that I can know that I am doing more with every year.

Recently Noah told me, “If you don’t feel like you do anything in the world… you are giving more and more money away every year. You are financially impacting the lives of more and more people. That is doing something.”

I don’t do this because I’m a nice person. I don’t do this to be good. I do this because I can never help the child I was. I do this because it needs to be done and other assholes aren’t stepping up.

I’m an asshole. I can live with that. But I want to be an asshole who has specific boundaries around where and how I hit people, how I escalate fights, and when it is appropriate for me to use force.

I think that hitting people to teach them is a shitty way to teach them if you want an ongoing relationship. That style of teaching instill anger, fear, distrust, and the belief in the person you are educating that they deserve to be hit.

Ask me how I’m feeling about Noah right now.

We need something different.

I do not feel traumatized. I feel like I discovered a boundary. I need something different. This isn’t working for me.

I have enough brain damage for one lifetime.

I think that hitting should be used when you are ok with ending the relationship and not before.

If you don’t think I should be packing to leave then we should not be in a physical fight. That needs to be a boundary. And no, that does not mean I should get free hits without retribution. That’s not what I’m saying.

I need to stop hitting casually. I need to be taught through repetition and mostly through words. This behavior will mostly be extinguished through catching the “taps” that “don’t count” because actually they do. They teach muscle memory. They remind me that hitting is ok.

I used to hit ineffectively so I thought it was fine for me to hit people. At this point I’m very effective and that means I need to treat my hands like weapons and be in full control of them.

Things change.

Noah hit back because I hurt him. He has the right. I’m not really mad that he believes he has the right to defend himself.

I’m mad that men start out able to defend themselves with so much force without having to take class after class after class and work and work and work.

I’m not sure that I’m mad at the men. I’m just mad.

I know that I need to get over all the shit that happened to me. But a lot of the places I hurt almost every day are from specific assaults.

Do you think you would be able to forget if you were reminded by your body every day?

Maybe if I can actually heal I stand a chance. Maybe.

Chiropractic appointment in 3.5 hours. I’m going to call and schedule acupuncture for this week. I don’t see a massage therapist for a while but I’ll be ok. Two weeks? I’ll live. Ha.

Cause the next time I see massage therapists I’m uhm seeing two in one day because I didn’t really look at the calendar before booking the second one. That’s ok. One person works on a very small area for the full hour and the other person does a more general massage for an hour and a half. It will feel like magic. I will need to drink so much water that day.

I’m really trying.

Some day I would like to spend less money on health care and spend more money on donating to communities of color. They need the money. I’d rather not need to spend it on my body.

I really don’t think I’m the best place to spend all these resources. But I recognize that it is literally necessary for a time if I am going to heal and be able to do the work I want to do. If I want to stop feeling suicidal because I cannot deal with how much pain I experience on a daily basis… I need to spend the money since I have it. I don’t have a justification for giving it away instead of fixing what is wrong.

Not at this point. Not really. I will be a more effective tool if I stop and do maintenance.

That’s just prudence.

Is that close enough to self love to count?

I’m trying.

Today I am going to spend with the kids. Except for the chiropractic appointment. They’ll do bookwork during that time. We’ll be together the rest of the time. I think we should garden. We’ll read. We’ll snuggle.

I will remind my body that despite these training exercises… I’m safe now. I am safe now.

We need to meditate tonight. During the class I was fucking whigging out for a while. Then I remembered what I’ve been saying to myself when we meditate. “I breathe in nothing that will pollute me; I breathe out the nothingness that has consumed me.” It helped. It helped a lot. The fact that I’ve been practicing at night has helped. I calmed down much faster than I used to be able to.

Jenny tells me that I look at how far I have to go. She looks at how far I have come. I write it down so I can see too.

Slightly less hysteria

We spent a lot of time talking last night. Noah says I hit him frequently, but it is closer to a tap than an injurious assault so he doesn’t comment. He says if I were A) hurting him B) intimidating him or C) escalating he’d make it a big deal but I don’t. What I do is more like smacking his shoulder for bad jokes in a way that doesn’t hurt at all.

Ok… that’s not enough that I should be packing my bags and going (I asked) but…

I genuinely don’t notice that I’m doing this and that’s a big problem. I asked him to start calling attention to it every single time it happens. I don’t like that I’m doing this. I want to stop and apparently I’m not doing it on my own.

I asked the kids if I’ve hit them in ways they remember and I don’t. We went down the laundry list of my transgressions. The kids were adamant that I haven’t hurt them outside of what I recall.

We talked about how, “Well we bump each other and that hurts sometimes but it isn’t on purpose. And when we were in the ocean in Florida you grabbed me so hard it hurt really bad.”

Uhm, the ocean in Florida was on the tail end of a fucking hurricane and there was a terrifying riptide. I was grabbing you so hard because I didn’t want you to drown. Soon after we just got the fuck out because it wasn’t safe. So yeah. No apologies over that one. Better you here with a sore arm than gone.

That’s not hitting.

That’s… necessary roughness for life.

I feel like I don’t have scale. I feel like I don’t have perspective and I don’t know what things mean I should have to die.

I really don’t know.

Not. Ok.

Noah says, “Not infrequently, I got hit by you without hitting back.” That means I’m hitting Noah and I’m unaware of it. That’s a real problem.

If I am unconscious of hitting someone that’s a big problem. That’s a problem the size of Montana and I’ve seen Montana. I am completely freaking out over this.

I am a much bigger monster than I even realized. That’s a real problem. I am the problem.

If I knew where my scalpel was I’d be in the bathroom. I’m old enough and fussy enough that I won’t cut with a dull knife any more. I don’t like the scarring. I like my scalpel so that I don’t scar at all. My legs look fine and I have probably made a few thousand cuts in my lifetime.

Yay for sharp blades.

Sarah you may think that no one deserves to be in that place but apparently I am not fucking capable of being conscious of my behavior. Do you know what cutting does? It kinda turns me into a zombie. It completely floods my brain with “Shut the hell up you fucking fuck” and I don’t talk and I sure as fuck don’t hit anyone.

Why is it wrong to do then? If it the sole method of truly controlling my behavior why is it bad?

I apparently am not controlling myself as well as I think. What I am doing is failing.

I’m not even god damn aware of it.

That’s a real problem. And I’ve been fucking freaking out all god damn day because of this. I do not seem to be able to stop being a monster.

Does this mean I’m hitting the kids too without noticing?

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

I don’t know. I don’t even know how to ask them.

Oh my god.

You know what, Noah… I think your approach of “not talk about it except sometimes hitting back” has failed. It’s been 10 years. You say I’m hitting you still and you mostly aren’t responding. Maybe we need to try a different approach. Apparently just hitting me occasionally isn’t teaching me.

Who the fuck would have guessed that?

To be fair, I am 100% cognizant of the fact that I used to hit people all the time. I used to hit people just about every day.

How often am I hitting people if I don’t notice?

Hitting

I’m thinking about hitting a lot lately. It factors in that I’m taking a martial arts class so I’m hitting a few times a week. It factors in that I’m in a class this weekend to help me hit people without hurting myself. It factors in that I have a long and colorful history around hitting and being hit.

I don’t think hitting is morally right or morally wrong in and of itself. I think it is situational and context dependent. I think sometimes hitting is downright fun and sometimes it is severely traumatizing. Just like sex can be fantastic or a real problem.

Noah and I hit each other. Mostly this isn’t a big deal because we ask permission first and we do it in specific, negotiated ways. But sometimes someone (mostly me) fucks up and hits in a way that isn’t appropriate.

Does that make it abuse? Abuse is treating someone cruelly or violently. Was I cruel to Noah? I was demeaning. I was rude. Is that the same thing as cruel?

I hit him harder than I hit Eldest Child, but not hard in the world of me hitting people. I’m trying to learn better self control. I still fail.

When I was younger I used to hit people all the time. When I say all the time I mean that not many days went by without me hitting people. Now, outside of specific skills classes you can count on the fingers of a hand how many times I have fucked up and hit someone in the past few years.

It is a lot of progress, but is it good enough? Probably not. I am still trying to work on more self control. The problem is, I have about eleventybillion things that all need lots of self control. Self control is finite.

I’m not mad at Noah for hitting me back. I started it and I deserved it. I’m angry about how hard the hit was.

In my head I liken this to a Chihuahua and a Great Dane. (Not that I advocate hitting animals in any way shape or form–that’s never ok. They really can’t consent.) If you kinda whack a Great Dane on the back the animal might think you are just being a bit rough. If you do the exact same whack on a Chihuahua… you might be able to kill the dog.

I’m not mad at Noah for hitting me. I’m mad that he hit me that hard where he did. Because god damnit aren’t we paying enough fucking money on my god damn medical bills. I am a breakable toy.

I’m not saying I don’t deserve to be hit back when I start it. I’m saying, “How much pain can I actually absorb this lifetime.”

I’m scared. I’m scared because I feel like I’m walking a tightrope where I’m supposed to be appropriate enough for everyone else and still manage to get my pain levels down low enough to where I don’t want to die all the time. I don’t know how to balance this.

Noah and I were talking last night about the fact that it is very hard for me that I don’t have places in my life where I’m supposed to dump the big kinetic, frustrated energy I have in my life. There isn’t anyone I’m supposed to really hit. Noah and I schedule dates every so often where he beats the crap out of me. Because we both think it is hot. It’s consensual, highly negotiated, and a lot of fun. I’m not complaining in the slightest about him hitting me hard when it is on my ass instead of my head.

I think of these as boundary problems. Not necessarily abuse because we do not define some level of hitting as abuse. Some level of hitting is specifically negotiated and ok. Outside of that we have boundary problems. Are they the same as abuse? We both fuck up.

I think that abuse makes people feel small and trapped. I don’t feel like that. I don’t live in fear of Noah beating me. I think that if I’m an asshole he will reciprocate… is that abuse?

We don’t get into angry fist fights. Usually what happens is I don’t think about an impulse, I smack him, he smacks back, we both apologize and it’s over. I can live with that. I have impulse control problems (documented. It’s a thing) and yeah I fuck up. He feels he can live with the level I fuck up because I don’t attack him in anger. I smack him idly while having a conversation in a way that was completely normal for me for decades. I have mostly stopped doing it and sometimes I slip.

I grew up in a hitting culture. America is a gun culture. I grew up around people who hit casually, frequently, as a matter of course. I think my children would be shocked at how much hitting used to be common in my life. Now there’s a slip up every great while. I don’t think I hit Noah like that every year. But once in a while I fuck up.

How many fuck ups are permissible in a lifetime before it isn’t a fuck up it is a lifestyle choice?

If out of 365 days in a year I fuck up once or twice… and I don’t even do it every year so not really even once ever 365 days.

Where does it become abuse?

You know what? I didn’t hit the kid who kicked me in the throat. I don’t hit my kids when they hit me. Last night a kid I like was kicking me in the face (not real hard) and I got up and moved away from the kid after multiple verbal warnings because I sure as shit wasn’t going to hit this kid.

But I fuck up sometimes.

I’m not trying to justify or excuse it. I’m trying to describe it. I don’t think I should be doing this. I think my continual “I’m trying and failing” is pathetic and kind of… yeah. Grow the fuck up. I’m almost 35 god damn years old.

But I know a lot of 70-something year olds with impulse control problems that make mine look like a cake walk.

Am I really so evil and disgusting? I have a hitting problem. I know. I feel like a piece of shit because I know that if I go play with my friend and stomp him into the ground I will probably stop wanting this so bad for a long time. I will want it again eventually (Yes, I am a documented sadist) but not for a while. It’s like relieving pressure instead of having an explosion.

Oooooooh. I just got an email back from my friend. Noah told me I could set up some dinner dates with my friend (for extensive negotiation) then we are going to need to find an appropriate venue. Then alllllllllllllllll the hitting and kicking and slapping and pinching and scratching will be appropriate! I CAN’T FUCKING WAIT. Only I’ll wait. Because I’m patient. Like a spider. This will be all the more glorious for the anticipation. I’m really really excited that this friend suggested playing. There are things I like doing to people that not many people in this world want to experience. If you find someone who is not only tolerant but enthusiastic? That’s god damn magic.

Well I’m at an interesting point for reading this article this morning. It’s discussing victimization by gender in the UK.

I’m one of the percentage of woman who is problematic. I don’t deny that at all. I don’t deny that there are problematic women. I’m here so obviously they exist.

I have a kid clutching one hand. I guess that’s it for today.