Category Archives: post therapy

Unique is kind of an annoying word.

My therapist today did that thing where someone says, “You have to view yourself as unique” when what they mean is, “You think you’re a special snowflake, don’t you?” Oh boy.

To give more explanation: this came up in context of talking about my whiny sensitivity around the fact that I spend more hours than average researching educational theories and parenting strategies.

My therapist wanted it to be about me thinking I’m a special snowflake.

No… I’m an educator. How much time I spend is not unique. It is just… associated with a profession I am no longer engaged in.

I’m being vague on purpose because I don’t want to explain something that happened. Just go with me here.

If Michael Pollan were to throw a party and say in an attempt to be humorously disparaging, “I probably spend too much time thinking about food” and someone responded with, “Everyone thinks about food.” Would that feel like an invitation to have a conversation or like an attempt to shut down?

It’s not that how much Michael Pollan thinks about food is unique; it isn’t unique. But it is unusual.

Does that make Michael Pollan actually better than everyone else who thinks about food that much? Uhhh… what is the metric here? How are we judging? What are we judging? What does that question, that better even mean?

I think I finally got my shrink to understand because she pivoted to a story: she knew a couple where the wife spent many years depressed and feeling pointless. Then her husband retired and started to really see what she did with her time. He said, “You aren’t a house wife. You are a property manager” because she had bought three rental properties during the course of their relationship and she dealt with all of that. Apparently she felt better about herself after her husband labeled her work in this way.

I had this thought as I was driving home. I want to be an integral part of a story. I don’t want to be a cog in a machine. Kinda like how Steve Jobs is not “part of Apple” he is the reason Apple exists. Only I don’t want to start a company. That’s not what I’m driven to do this lifetime.

I want to go research sexual violence and I don’t want to do it while I have little kids. I really really really don’t. I don’t think that is safe for my kids.

When I get pissy about feeling dismissed I don’t think it is because I’m such a unique special snowflake who should receive genuflection, but it’s more that I desperately want a small cast of characters in my life who see me as being valuable and knowledgable. I’m not the most special person ever. But I’m really important to a few people.

I don’t want to break the internet. I want a few people in my life who love me and believe that they genuinely could not be as cool if they did not know me. I want to help a few people be in less pain than they would have been without me.

I think that’s an ok goal.

I feel like part of my angsty shit around this is that I want to be recognized for what I’ve done. I’m not “just a stay at home mom”. I am a professional educator. I have put an enormous amount of energy into being this and knowing what I know. I’m a sensitive and whiny baby around feeling like that isn’t respected.

Which doesn’t mean I think I’m unique.

But it means I feel unseen in that moment. I feel like what I’ve done is not serving this person so they are discounting it and I am not actually what I think I am.

I know that my sense of self needs to be less permeable. I pathetically proffer before you evidence that my sense of self is more secure than it used to be.

I need to feel myself reflected back in order to feel like I get to exist. This is bad because I can’t let someone not seeing me as something deter my from my goals.

I need to stop pausing, even for a minute.

I am an educator. That’s just an accurate description of how I move through the world. I do that. Even if I’m not getting paid… a great many teachers throughout history weren’t paid in cash. So what?

I didn’t fire my shrink because we spent a while talking about what I want from her and what I never want to discuss again and she agreed that the boundaries sound good.

ok.

Keep plugging away on being less crazy.

post-therapy cranky version

My shrink told me that Noah and I need to get a couples therapist. I get the impression she feels this because she’s on Noah’s side and she’s my shrink and that’s complicated. She wants someone to argue for him.

She’s glad he’s putting up boundaries.

She said a bunch of things I want to write down but my hands are on fire.

But in other news Deity is out of the doghouse. “Oh he’s displayed such clear morals and values. He can stay.”

Her opinions continue to baffle me.

She had a lot of god damn opinions this week.

Sad, scared, but hopeful?

My shrink smiled at me and said, “I know you don’t want to hear this… but these conversations with Noah, though painful, are positive. You two are working through deeper levels of trust than you have been able to access in ten years. Yeah. That’s going to hurt.”

Fuck her.

I’m kidding.

Noah and my shrink have opposite assumptions about how nonmonogamy will go plus a pregnancy. He says, “You will still want all your boys.” She says, “Oh good! So it’s going to be at least a year and a half of you just not wanting anyone else that’ll be convenient.”

I tried having sex with my submissive during my last pregnancy. It… didn’t really go that well. He smelled wrong. (Which is not his fault or any actual criticism of him.) It’s a chemical/pheromone thing. He was the only person I tried to have sex with and it didn’t work. I suspect another pregnancy would be similar. I had the most intense, “I’m only supposed to have sex with my baby daddy” feeling.

There’s a part of me that wishes I felt slutty while pregnant but I haven’t so far in four pregnancies. I have my doubts about that happening this time.

My 2. 4 pregnancies when you add up the weeks? Eek.

My shrink was thrilled when I told her that Noah changed his mind about a third baby when I started saying the word “c-section”. “See! Isn’t he the best man ever! He wouldn’t consider it when you were doing it in a way that made it unlikely you will survive and once it is obvious you are committed to staying with him…. Awwwww.”

I never stopped wanting a baby. I would talk about why it was a bad idea. I would talk about the benefits of not having a baby. I never stopped wanting this child.

My shrink says she is very interested in seeing how the next few years go for me. She’s excited I’m trying so hard to find volition in my sex. That’s global.

I think that’s why things are feeling awkward in a lot of my sex-situations right now. Where is my volition?

I don’t want to lead and I don’t want to do anything I don’t want to do. That’s a bitch.

My shrink says she can understand why Noah is feeling insecure if I’m going out and having better sex. I said, “That’s just it! The sex isn’t better! It’s like a deprivation vacation!”

Uhm, no offense, folks.

Noah knows me inside and out. Noah knows when to fuck faster and when to go slower. He knows when it is time to start playing with my ass. He knows which shift of my shoulders means, “Please pinch my nipple.” He knows how to be mean and how to touch me so gently I feel like I am made of spun glass.

It isn’t that other people fuck me better. They don’t. It is that experiencing variety lets me come home and go, “Oh Goldilocks Penis of my dreams, come here.”

I say he has the Goldilocks Penis because it is the perfect size and shape. Plus I love me some foreskin. Why perfect size and shape? It’s a fit thing. He doesn’t hurt in general. There are only a few days a month and a few positions where my cervix drops enough that sex hurts. With anyone bigger than him… it hurts. I have a low slung cervix. I can deal with that pain mostly… but it’s there. It is something to process with other people.

AND WHAT IS UP WITH THESE DUDES WITH HUGE COCKS LINING UP FOR ME?!

I mean, I love you just how you are. Ahem.

I partially have so much sex with Noah because eventually I run into friction problems. Eventually.

That’s perfect sex.

I can fuck Noah for 4-6 hours in a day and I’m just barely sore the next day. An hour of fucking Deity and I feel it for a few days. Like owwwwwwwww.

Thank Goodness no one in the current roster is as big as my Owner. Never. Ever. Again.

My internal organs have been beaten about enough. Seriously.

I’m thinking about what you wrote about enmeshment, Noah. I really am.

I’m talking about other cocks. But I’m thinking about you. Like I do. Where is this going? You really don’t want me to have serious relationships. You really want me to only focus on you. And sometimes have sex with my friends.

I can’t argue with any of the points you make. You are right. I don’t want you to stop. I like having you as a supplicant. If in order to have you I must have massive limits around everyone else…

need you like I need air. R wants to punch me in the face for saying I wouldn’t be where I am without you. But I still think it is true. Outside of you, Noah, no one has ever wanted very much of me.

No one in my life right now actually wants very much of me. They want what they want. That very narrow slice. Just that piece. Then they will go back to their life. They will go back to their families.

And I have you. You have given me my first family. My only family. For me to pick anything other than you would be the most self hating decision I have ever made.

You look at Deity and see someone who could replace you. I see someone who is not broken enough to put up with my shit. I see someone who would expect me to change to fit the dynamics of their life. You changed everything for me.

I do not see any replacements for you anywhere on this planet.

I looked.

But I do still want to have sex with my friends. And the occasional stranger.

I don’t know how this is going to work. I don’t want to run the group sex we have and that means you kinda have to run the fuck and that means we can only have sex with people who are more or less ok with the idea that you suggest a lot of stuff during sex. That narrows who we have sex with a lot.

Thank you for your flexibility with suggestions and for your hotness Oh Deity.

Even though your dick is too big it is a wonderful sometimes treat.

How are we going to do this without hurting you or me, Noah? I don’t want to hurt you more. Hearing you talk this morning just about broke my heart. I should not have so much power over anyone. I’m not sure this Krissy-religion is smart if I can hurt you that badly. Oh honey.

But I get it. Ok, so we feel about the same way when it comes to the idea of the other seriously dating.

It feels like all of a sudden we are just marking time until death. Like nothing is important. Like we don’t matter except as a tool of support. God that feeling sucks.

Time to be a parent.

Full head, full house, ouchie arms

If my arms were great I wouldn’t be able to type much because I have four kids here. My arms suck though. There are a few things I want to try and remind myself of, maybe so I can talk to Noah about them.

My shrink is quite perturbed by my level of interest in Deity. This is becoming A Thing We Talk About. She’s all: “Sport fucking! Yay! Falling in love. Boo.”

When I mention that I already love other partners she cocks an eyebrow and says, “You don’t blush and stammer when you talk about them.”

Well, maybe that is true.

I have a better idea of what I want from my submissive. I have times when I don’t feel I have the oomph to do what I want to do but I feel deeply secure that the line of stuff I’m interested in asking for are all things that are right up his alley.

I have… more comfort around Cupid. I think I’m a lot more into him than I should be. I’m tap dancing on a high wire trying to figure out how to keep him in a spot in my life even though he’s probably not going to be interested in the group stuff everyone else will put up with. I went from wanting someone to do something to wanting Cupid to do things but I’m not 100% sure what.

I’m really not interested in hunting just the now. I feel like I have a lot to explore and learn about and I’m really excited about that.

And I get to balance it with helping Noah feel secure. The whole ship won’t sail if he feels insecure. First I have to figure out how to help Noah feel loved. Then I can figure out what it means that I love these other people.

Because I do. I love my Daddy’s. Every single one of them for different reasons.

What do these loves, these attachments mean? I don’t know. Many of them have been there for a long time. (I messaged Daddy James today to say that even though I was in his neighborhood… I still am not fucking him. Sigh.)

I do love these people. But what does that mean?

What is love?

Some love is possessive and about ownership… but not all love. Sometimes love is about generosity and sharing and wanting them to get joy from anyone but you. Loving someone can include hoping they find the girl of their dreams and settle down and don’t have time for me.

But not Noah. He’s not allowed to run out of time for me.

I fall in love easily. I fall in love often. I fall in love with great intensity. Usually I love forever.

If I sat here and listed allllllllllllll of the people who have a piece of my heart… I’d sound like I was bragging. I would be bragging.

Aren’t I a lucky bitch? I have been able to love so many people.

Some of them even loved me back. At least a little. For a time.

Do any of those loves mean I do not love Noah? I don’t see why that would be true. I married one man. One man has seen me through hardship and illness and despair. One man helped me create the babies that give me life.

It really doesn’t matter how much I love other people this will always be true.

Noah is the only person who ever really looked at me and decided that he was going to prove to me that I am worthy.

Loyalty my friend, loyalty. But what does that loyalty entitle him to? My friend who was here the other weekend says jack shit. My shrink says definitely not sex.

I don’t know what I think.

I know I shouldn’t care what random people out in the world think. I really shouldn’t. I was stupid enough to read one of those “People who commit suicide are selfish” posts. I shouldn’t have. I should have opted-out and done some self-care.

Suicide has shaped my whole life. My grandmother killed herself by overdosing when my mom was pregnant with me. My mom dealt with that loss through my infancy. It was hard. She had been very close to her mother. I don’t really know why. My brother lit himself on fire because he could not cope with the pain of his life. Given how his life was… I don’t feel I have the right to anger. Was he selfish? Yes. But he had the right to be. He was left alone in care facilities where he was abused and that was all he would ever know. My father sat in the garage with the motor running and wrote notes to everyone in the world telling them that I was an evil liar and he was innocent. Even though he’d already confessed and collaborated every story. He wasn’t going to drive himself to the court room that day.

Selfish is just so beside the point.

My therapist OD’ed on heroin. She could not deal with the pain in her life. My adopted step-mom (long story) OD’ed on injected pain medication she was not prescribed. She could not deal with the pain in her life.

I have been institutionalized for attempting suicide. My stomach was pumped and I’m still here.

I don’t have a lot of the attachments other people have. I get what I create. I do the absolute best I can with the platonic friends I have…

Sharing sex and intimacy creates tighter bonds.

I don’t feel like I’m in a position to turn down a good twitterpation. Even if it makes my therapist uncomfortable. Am I going to wreck my life over it? No. I hope not.

Noah’s parents just sent us a cheerful letter to tell us about the cruise they are going on. The same month as the one we are going on. The one they won’t go on with us because they have to “get the hay in”. The hay they won’t touch with their hands because they have employees.

What is attachment?

I’m listening to the kids as they play in the back yard. I’m kinda ridiculous about enforcing outside time. “Y’all spend too much time inside. Get out into the sun. Go. Go. Go.”

I do go with them…

Right now I medicate. It was a long day of driving and being sober. Processing with my therapist. I feel like I’m almost ready to be happy. But not till I deal with Thursday. Oh Thursday.

I love you so. I have been such a twat waffle and I do not deserve your forgiveness. I have no. no. no. no idea how this will go.

Fuck.

I’m thinking of a pithy movie quote, I think from Girls Just Want to Have Fun “You always hurt the one you love.” Shannon Doherty? Is that it?

Anyway.

You know… I think I love my biological father. Even with everything. Most of the people who raped me… I loved them. Many of them I love them now. I might feel really angry with them… but I love them.

What is love?

Even though Tommy spent my childhood beating me and trying to rape me… I loved him. I’m sad his life was so terrible that he had to die to get away from it. I cannot bring myself to be angry with him for not wanting to suffer more for my convenience.

It is almost the anniversary of Tommy’s death. Next month. Eighteen years now. In three more years he will have been dead as long as he was alive.

Rest in Peace, Tommy.

What am I doing with my life?

I am trying to stop being a destroyer. I want to be a builder. I want to be someone who makes less pain in the world and not more.

There are reasons for temporary physical pain that alleviate intense emotional suffering and I don’t know how to deal with that dichotomy. Sometimes I don’t know what I am doing.

I want to figure out how to help there be less pain. One of the ways I do that is to understand and find compassion.

I like loving lots of kinds of people. They all teach me different things. I learn best by being able to stand very close to someone and bask in their presence. I know this after many years of trying a lot of ways to learn. I will pick things up faster. I will learn more quickly. I will try to synch up with this person in any way I can because the drive to conform is what keeps our species alive.

The main reason I manage to be so god damn weird is because I have allowed myself to pattern off incredibly different people. Contradictions are ok. We can all solve different problems.

Ok. Time to be off.

I love you. Even when I have no idea what that means.

post-therapy rambling

My shrink wants me to think about this picture when I’m trying to figure out what is fair for rules for me and Noah. She reminds me that having a traumatized brain/body means I am probably not ever going to be able to have the same limits as other people. Mine will just be different. I can feel like shit about that or I can get on with my life. Those are the options.

Noah and I don’t need the same things. I feel weird about that. The things that make me feel so scared I could puke don’t bother him. The things that bother him the most… I don’t notice.

In my head someone has to be wrong. Is it Noah or me? Of course it is me. That’s… just how things go.

She had some things to say about some of the stuff that has been bothering me that I don’t want to write down but gosh I hope I remember. Why don’t I want to write it down?

Well if I told you that I might as well just write it down and get the consequences.

Consequences suck.

I’m not going to write much. I have sick kids here. That’s ok with me. Sick kids = snuggly kids.

But I have a lot to think about. How much anger is ok? How am I allowed to react to my anger? What steps should I take to be appropriate? It’s all so complicated.

Feeling more complete

At the conclusion of Cranky Day I went up to Wicked Grounds and had dinner with two wonderful women. We had a great conversation. I felt seen. I felt like I had friends. I felt like I know these peoples stories and they know mine and they want to know more. I know I want to know more about them.

It isn’t just about hunting. It is about needing something bigger than a four person nucleus family with a babysitter.

My submissive walked in, surprised to see me, on a date. I was tactful I think. Barely grabby enough to remind him that I can but not stepping on the toes of his date. I think. I hope. *cross fingers* (No complaints from him.)

I think it is funny how I’m kinda putting people in boxes they didn’t ask to be put in. I don’t know if those are boxes they want to be in.

I am sorta doing with my submissive an intensified, deeper, adult, more intimate version of what I barely hinted at with my best friend in junior high. My poor best friend. I spent so much time hitting him. He told me that it didn’t hurt that much and clearly I needed to be hitting someone so it was ok. But I never kissed him. I never got even close to being sexual with him. That was completely off the table. (I actually went and stayed with this friend on the road trip. His wife is awesome and he has a darling baby boy. I’m so happy for him.)

I’ve never really soaked in wanting without hurrying up to sex. I don’t even really know how to do that. I feel like I’m signing up for the most torturous science project of my life. How does one sit with desire and coax it without indulging it completely?

I don’t know and I want to find out.

When I am grinding on your crotch and you can smell me the thing isn’t that I lack desire to fuck you.

I want to fuck you. But much more than that I want the power to decide not to fuck you. The first power like that I’ve ever really had in my life.

That’s a kind of intoxication I don’t know how to describe.

I love that I can lay on you and kiss you as much as I want to and you will gasp and moan and pant and start crying… but you won’t grab me and force me to do more than I am ready to do.

This is an utterly novel experience for me.

It is gross and creepy and yucky but I feel like the seeds of wanting this came from being a parent. I kiss my kids without escalating. But it isn’t passionate. It is loving and tender without being remotely sexual.

It really taught me a lot about the variety of love I can feel. I am curious about the extent of that variety in a way I was not before having children. How many ways can love?

Am I physically capable of passion without hurrying to get it over with?

And it will be complicated to figure out the dynamic of pain and tenderness. When I say that I haven’t really dominated you in the past, the tenderness is a huge chunk of what I mean. I have tried very hard to give you the kind of pain I thought you wanted. I wasn’t there just being selfish. I like that kind of play and I thought you only wanted a specific thing from me.

If what you want is to do what I want, then this is going to be a whole lot more gentle. Because you don’t understand what I want as much as you think you do. Yes, I want to hurt you. I’m going to fuck you up severely. But that will be like 10% of our relationship.

I’ve watched you for a decade and a half. I’ve watched you be a man of integrity, honesty, character, and dedication.

Why in the world would I want to spend the majority of our time together degrading you?

Just got off the phone with my shrink. That was a lovely phone call. I gave her an update on the folks I’m pursuing. She said, “Oh I know these names.” That makes me happy. She thinks it is a good thing that I am taking my sexual satisfaction this seriously. “If this is what it takes and you can do it… do it.”

She also said that the thing I was cranky about is something we’ve discussed in therapy many many many many many many many times and yup I’ve been cranky about it for a long time. That is an accurate perception on my part. I’m not being hysterical. This is an issue.

I described my April and said, “Ok that is 0-60.”

I said, “IT IS ONLY ON 3 DAYS!!!!”

“Oh. But it is so much emotional intensity… it feels like a lot more than three days…”

Deep sigh.

You don’t understand. I used to do this 5-6 nights/week.

Three nights in a month doesn’t feel like 0-60 for me. And two of those nights I’ll be with the kids for most of the day anyway.

So it doesn’t represent that much time away from my normal life except in the form of lost sleep.

So it feels different to me.

I’m being real careful to catch up on sleep first.

My shrink said yeah, just use Lorazepam every night for a while. Catch up on lost sleep. Just doooo eeeet.

None of this, “But I’m overmedicated” bullshit. I’m not.

I think I have decided to try the Gabapentin. I’m scared shitless. But I seriously need a break from smoking. This is killing my lungs. Edibles are so expensive.

I would much rather give my money away than hemorrhage it on pot. Realistically: I’d rather pay chiropractors.

I’m not sure I will ever stop completely. I like it. But I don’t want to need this much of it. At this point it is hurting me.

My lungs are so pissed.

I won’t be on the computer today. K is bringing the Bonus Kids over. We haven’t had a visit in a while. I’m really happy about it.

Last night two wonderful women decided to come talk to me just because I said in a public way that I would be out of the house.

I feel so lucky.

Thank you for seeing me. Thank you for loving me.

Arms hurt. Love you so much. Bye.

Hilarity

Muh shrink says, “You want this. You have someone who wants to give it to you. Your husband is ok with it. Why are you so worried?”

Because I worry about everything. Duh.

Boundaries are hard. We talked lots about boundaries. She says that in her opinion my boundaries are in the right places.

You never know for sure until it is too late. So I’m scared.

Phew

I just got off the phone with my shrink. It was a good phone call. We did talk about the hair pulling thing. I am quite relieved to hear that we are on the same page again. We communicated extensively about the fact that I do not consider hair pulling to be a primary go to best practices parenting thing to do. It is not a great idea. It is not something to do in place of slapping your children as a habitual act. She was feeling nervous. Fair enough. No, I do not think I should spend a lot of time yanking on my children’s hair.

I am relieved that once I explained what actually happened she was no longer upset. Phew.

she is very happy to hear that I want to find a local therapist who specializes in children.

I want so badly to be better than I am.

People are hard (post-therapy)

This was one of those therapy sessions where I feel mad at my shrink because STOP TAKING OTHER PEOPLES SIDES. WHAT THE FUCK?! She really likes to explain to me in great detail why other people are justified in doing what they are doing. I have started telling her, “You know… I already understand their point of view and don’t need to pay you to explain it to me. I don’t like their point of view and I’m bitching about it. I get that they have validity. What.Fucking.Ever.”

She reacts as if she doesn’t know what to do with me. Totally fair.

This time it was explaining why one of my friends did what they did. I get it already. I get that this person was doing what felt comfortable to them. I get that they weren’t trying to be rude. I get it.

I still feel like it was fucking rude and I’m annoyed. I don’t care that they didn’t intend to be rude. It felt rude to me and I’m having feelings and I want to process my feelings without being told how I shouldn’t have these feelings because reasons.

What.Fucking.Ever. Are you my shrink or are you on their payroll?

I get really mad when she says I shouldn’t feel a way because reasons. Uhm, feelings don’t work that way.

Yes, I get that you want me to have context and sympathy and empathy and all that… I have that. Sometimes I get to care about my feelings and how I’m treated. I don’t have to only care about other peoples feelings. This is not that kind of game.

I’m not saying I had the right to be a nasty bitch to my friend when I was annoyed about an interaction. That would be over the line. I completely agree. But I get to have my damn feelings. Don’t tell me not to feel a way.

AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Fastest fucking way to piss me off. I’m trying to train her. “I hear that you are very upset about this and you don’t want to hear the other point of view defended right now.”

Yup, that’s all I want you to say when I’m in the midst of my feels.

Some other day when I’m not ranting and raving about how pissed off I am is a great time to bring up, “Remember that other day when you were really mad? Can we talk about that now?”

Then I can listen. Then I can respect their point of view. When I am in the midst of my feels fuck right off with telling me I have to care more about them than me. Especially when I didn’t do anything with my mean feels besides get quiet.

Even ranting about people on my blog is pissier than what I did to this friend. In person all I did was get quiet. Ok, my tone of voice probably got snippier but I wasn’t mean. I worked really fucking hard on that. I didn’t like what was happening and I got through it and out of the situation. I was nice to my friend. We did exchange messages after this issue expressing our continued affection and desire for a relationship.

I’m still mad my friend did a thing. I’m FUCKING ALLOWED TO FEEL THAT WAY.

I don’t hate my friend. I don’t want to stop being friends with this person. I feel this person has a lot to offer the world as a human being and me in particular as my friend. Specifically what I value about this relationship is the many little bits of “insider” information they drop about their culture that I would otherwise be completely shut out of. Thank you for telling me about you, your family, and your culture. That is a real gift.

I’m still mad about a thing. I won’t be mad forever. It’s not a big thing. I wasn’t raped. I wasn’t hit. I wasn’t called a name. I wasn’t told anything horrible.

I just didn’t like something. It was a small thing. I’ll get over it.

Aren’t I allowed to dislike a thing?

I didn’t yell at my friend. I didn’t shun my friend. I didn’t name my friend online as a BAD PERSON. I just had feelings. Why is that discouraged?

I think she (my shrink) was objecting to my language around my feelings more than me having feelings but I’M NOT READY TO GIVE HER THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT YET SO DON’T TELL ME I SHOULD, OK?!

She said that she didn’t think what my friend did was a boundary violation but rather just an assertion of that friend’s boundaries. (Gender neutral language is a fucker.)

I would agree if I hadn’t already told this person that I don’t like X about a thousand times over a decade.

Friend could have waited one more day and done Thing without me and it would have been all good. So I had feels about the fact that my friend couldn’t wait one fucking day and had to do it in front of me even though I’ve said SO MANY TIMES that I’m not interested in being around Thing.

It’s not like I travel across the country to interrupt my friend’s private life very often. Haven’t seen friend in years. Couldn’t wait ONE FUCKING DAY.

Ok, fine. Maybe it isn’t a boundary violation. But FUCK YOU ANYWAY. I’m still annoyed. It was still a Thing I’ve repeatedly said annoys me.

This is why I continue to pay shrinks. I can hate them with impunity then get over it and continue to benefit from their redirection. It’s ok to have highly mixed feelings about your therapist. It is one of the known things about long-term therapeutic relationships. If you don’t have the full range of feelings with your therapist you probably aren’t getting everything out of therapy you could be getting. I need to learn how to deal with these GO FUCK YOURSELF feelings in a way that is more constructive and useful. My shrink pissing me the fuck off gives me a very safe space to work through boundary setting and arguing in a way that is me-centered and safe without being a threat to a core relationship.

Even though I have many mixed feelings about white men, and especially white geeks… I can’t use Noah as too much of a proxy there. That is toxic to our relationship. I can safely use my therapist as a proxy for people to be mad at. As long as I also get over it and learn how to do the later steps because that is why I pay her to be in my life.

People use therapy differently. For me, therapy is largely about finding surrogate parents who will help guide me towards the me I want to be instead of the me that other people wish I would be so I would be more convenient.

I will probably never be convenient. I’m just not cut out for that.

That’s ok though. Life isn’t about convenience. Pretty much my whole life is set up around “inconvenient but important”.

I will not be mad at my friend for years about Thing. But I will ensure that next time we hang out together Thing just isn’t an option on the table because it bugs me. That’s not awful. It’s not mean. My friend can go do Thing without me all the other days of their life.

My shrink asked me why I like assholes as friends. I said, “Because I’m an asshole.” She laughed and laughed and laughed.

She asked me what being an asshole means to me. I said that assholes are people who are completely and totally capable of being selfish and self-centered when they feel the need. I might hurt people in my selfishness. Yup. That’ll happen. I’m going to prioritize me anyway because I can’t spend my whole life worrying about everyone but me. I’ll die. So I’m an asshole sometimes.

I understand why so many of the men in my life are completely self-absorbed. They were raised to be. I understand why so many of the women in my life struggle to center themselves. They were raised to think they weren’t important.

I think being an asshole is important sometimes. Being completely sure that your needs come first is an asshole move. It is also a survival move. I think that it is impossible to survive a whole series of awful shit without ever being an asshole. I think it is mandatory to be an asshole sometimes if you want to survive hard stuff.

I know people who have managed to have lives that look like they are wrapped in cotton balls. Those people don’t really strike me as assholes. They center other people in a way I just… won’t. Not ever again.

I center my children more than anyone else and even they are sometimes told to get away from me because I need to focus on me right now.

It is hard on them and I don’t feel good about myself when I do it. But it is a fact. Sometimes I have to focus on me or we won’t get where we are going. It is just fucking required. You can’t be more important 24/7 or I can never leave my house because I can’t risk having a need.

I understand on a deep level that my friends share with me what they have to spare. I approve. I don’t think they should give to me until it hurts them.

Sometimes I am still going to be annoyed by their behavior and I need that to be ok. I can’t be abusive to my friends because I feel annoyed by their behavior–that’s not ok. But I can have feelings. Don’t tell me not to.

It’s ok to ask, “Well what did you do with those feelings? Do you feel you were just?” That’s always fair. I fuck up. I need to be called on my behavior when I fuck up. Sometimes my behavior is not just. When that happens I need to make amends and try to do better in the future. I don’t get to treat people badly because I’m having a feels.

But don’t tell me not to have my feels. Or I may direct allllllllllllllllll of them towards you. You won’t like that. My feels are BIG.

Should I stay or should I go now

I leave in 32 days. On one hand… I’d like to leave tomorrow. On the other hand… I am scared. I’m scared of pain and failure. My hands hurt. Sometimes gripping things is a problem. Notice how good I’m being about not typing much? Trying to heal.

My belly hurts. I’m hungry. Dinner was light.

So many feelings. My shrink is pushing me to change how I interact with people. Make my plans and move forward. Don’t try so hard to get people on the same page. Don’t ask for specifics. Don’t try to nail people down to actual agreement. Either they show up or they don’t. Either their plans work or they don’t. She wants me to stop canceling a whole day of plans when someone in an inner circle speaks up and wants time. She wants me to reserve less time for people based on the emotional weight I give the relationship.

People will show up or not and I burn a lot of energy on planning and trying to get people to commit. Folks don’t like committing.

I feel like my shrink is being really fucking bossy lately. She’s given me more specific feedback on “X friendship doesn’t seem to be meeting your needs and you should step back” over the past few months. She’s pushing me to push people away. I have feelings about that.

She wants me to have more boundaries around me.

One of my lovely neighbors asked if I wanted her to come over so she can help me weed the garden. We will work on my abysmal Mandarin and her moderate English at the same time. Sounds fabulous. (Oh, Pam: she was sad when I said you were not available to join us. She wishes your grandmother a speedy recovery; she wishes more grandchildren were so dutiful.)

Splitting the kids into separate rooms was the right choice. As was coming down like a box of hammers over eating out. That stopped the fighting that was reaching a fevered pitch. Calli hasn’t felt the need to get in my face and tell me off since. Thank goodness. Having separate space is such a fabulous novelty that when I declare cool-off-time in separate rooms everyone is cheerful and excited. I’m aware that it will change over time.

We are going to have adventures with “I get to decide who is allowed in my room”.

We are still slowly dividing up belongings to figure out what gets stored where. It’s a process.

I think it is funny that Shanna wanted her bed flipped back into a bunk bed because this way it has sides and she doesn’t fall off the platform. A low bed isn’t safer for her.

Calli has been exhausted lately. She must be growing. She’s been napping more days than not for a week or two. Good timing. Outgrow your clothing now, before we leave on the trip.

I’m bleeding. This will be my last period using cloth pads until December. It’s disposables for most of the year. Ew, tampons. Owie, yucky, fuss, and ick. And yet the cloth pads hurt my tail bone.

32 days to go. I’m slowly getting the house cleaner. I’m not sure why I prioritize this as much as I do other than… when we come home it will be such a pleasure. I won’t have cubbies of delayed work waiting to crash on my head. I’m even doing my fucking filing.

My garden is wonderful. I have taken pictures. I should post them. Which means I should plug my phone in and transfer pictures. erk.

Post-therapy

We spent a lot of time talking about how my sense of self-worth is far too influenced by whether or not other people make time for me. My shrink wants me to work harder on going 50% of the way to people and then stopping. If someone doesn’t meet me halfway, I am better off turning around and continuing walking by myself. Going 75% of the way so that I can beg them to please notice me isn’t sustainable anymore.

Specifically I have homework about mapping out my cognitive stuff around my self-worth. And then specifically try to move the “other peoples opinions” bubble farther away from me.

Answering comment

Shalyndra–my shrink was frustrated because when I get upset and bad things happen I get in a loop tape of thinking that I want to die and she is tired of it. She wants me to move on so she can feel more successful as a therapist.

If I could break that fucking loop tape my life would be very different.

Thus the accusations of “You like being like this.”

That isn’t all she was frustrated about though. She wants me to believe that me getting angry in public is the same as her demanding to bring her dog into restaurants. She doesn’t understand why that is a problem for people and she thinks that me getting angry is a similar kind of blind spot. I’m not seeing how much of a problem my behavior is for other people.

But I get stuck on: it is god damn illegal for you to bring your dog everywhere and me getting angry is *not* illegal. So the parallel isn’t working to show me how not ok getting angry is. Because if you are telling me that I have as much right to anger as dog owners have to bring their dogs with them everywhere they go… we have a problem.

That’s not ok.

Therapy isn’t always awesome.

Today I feel like both me and my therapist were “off”. I could tell what she was trying to do with some techniques and they just didn’t work the way she wanted.

I left feeling like I am not going to be able to solve my problems this lifetime. I should die so I stop hurting everyone. That’s very much not wanted my therapist wanted me to get out of the appointment.

“You don’t change because you like being this way.”

I should try harder to be ashamed of myself and not like anything about the effectiveness of my personality.

Me getting angry is scary to people. My interpretation of today’s session is that since I know that my anger scares people it is all my fault if bad things happen if I express anger.

She would argue with that characterization. She would say, “I’m just trying to point out that you have a blind spot. When you get angry people get scared and that isn’t something that is going to change. You have to deal with that.”

I have to deal with people calling the police to report that I am threatening to stab people. Despite the fact that I did not threaten to harm anyone.

According to my shrink, me being angry is enough to cause people to call the police and I just can’t allow myself to get that dysregulated in public.

Which sounds to me like: unless you have perfect control stay home.

I will not have perfect control this lifetime.

I feel like I should die.

It really didn’t help that she tried to get me to see how unreasonable I was by comparing it to when she wants to take her dog into any restaurant with her. Uhm, I’m not trying to do something that violates health code so your analogy isn’t really working for me.

I feel like I should die so I stop hurting everyone.

This hurts a lot. I want to cut. Instead I am going to have alcohol. It’s going to fuck over my digestion. I don’t give a flying fuck.

I can only lose so many forms of self harm today. Alcohol is legal. I won’t be drinking enough to count as illegally impaired around my children. But I will be hurting myself. The funny thing is: this is the only legal method I have. So today I’m going to fucking have some.

I can’t pretend I like me today.

Comorbidity

That word is awesome. Comorbidity. It means the simultaneous presence of multiple conditions. Such a fabulous word. Like juxtaposition only in one spot.

My shrink and I were discussing my hypomania yesterday. Hypomania isn’t true mania. It means that you have an elevated activation of your nervous system but you aren’t necessarily doing anything rash or dangerous. I just flip between feeling happy and pissed off with a gentle breeze. I may be spending a “lot” of money but given that all of my big purchases in the last few months are things like “items I will use on cross-country trip” and “shed to prevent bicycles from disintegrating” I don’t really count as manic. I’m not blowing thousands of dollars on the lottery.

I have a lot going on. I have a lot of people in my life and I have dramatically different feelings about different people. Keeping all those feelings inside me and more or less cogent is really hard. It is very disruptive. If I knew fewer people maybe this would be easier… ha. Never happen.

The kids have been pretty explosive too. They are feeding off of me and I take responsibility. It’s like when Jenny copied my tone of voice and we had a bad first 24 hours. It sucks knowing that you are the one triggering the bad interactions in the whole house.

My attitude needs to change, and fast. I have about 18 people coming over in five hours. I haven’t made the food yet. I haven’t moved the tables yet. No biggie. That’s all there is left to do. It’ll get done. But I need to have a good attitude.

There is a family in our home school group who says that a lot when we are doing stuff like hiking and camping, “It’s important to have a good attitude.” I try really hard to listen to them. They have a good point.

So of course I woke up and at 5am I am standing at the freezer saying, “How should I medicate today?” Modern science is wonderful. The variety the dispensary has… it takes my breath away. I am thrilled. Cupcakes and rice crispy bars and brownies and cookies and about 10 different kinds of candy and chocolate bars and pills and oil and wax and ice cream and…

Whoa. All so I don’t have to give myself lung damage. Well done legalization industry.

I’m not a mellow person. I never have been. I am more calm and reflective than I used to be by a large measure. I no longer feel like someone not-paying-attention-to-me-right-now means death.

My shrink and I did several body-calming-exercises. Trying to help my central nervous system calm down. Sometimes I don’t think I could be more activated if I were hit by lightning. I’m already vibrating with energy. (Ok I know that actual lightning would be more… but you understand the metaphor.)

One of the things she had me do was visualize kicking someone. The thing is, that brings up my mental Rolodex of so-and-so and him and her and them and… Memory lane is a funny thing for me.

I will probably never do that again. I will probably never kick anyone in the nuts again. I will probably not kick someone in the chest hard enough to fracture ribs again.

Although I could do martial arts or kick boxing. Maybe that is a work around so that I can still beat the crap out of people but I’m being “monogamous”. As long as I claim I don’t get off on it–it’s fine, right?

Once my Owner watched a Famous Fetish Model/Educator (I’m capitalizing it because she’s a big deal in his little world and he nearly genuflects when he talks about her–whatever.) and her partner do a scene in which she only used her feet. Given how obsessed with feet my Owner was… well, nothing would do but that I do something similar to him. I learned that I liked it. I’ve done a lot of scenes where I didn’t touch someone with my hands.

Not to mention that I have literally had my ass kicked by many people. It feels awesome.

Bdsm gives me a fully consensual and appropriate space to work through my feelings of aggression. Not having it is hard. Cause seriously, if someone sidled up to me and begged me pretty please to knee them in the balls and slap them around right now… Oh I would have trouble saying no. That would be so much fun.

Ahem. Tea Party. Get your head on straight. Sweetness. Light. Gentle hands for the love of toast.

I’m irritated. That’s the only word I can come up with. My shrink wants to stick with activated. Wired for sound.

But these ups and downs, this is why there is so much conflicting opinion about my diagnosis. I’ve heard just PTSD. I’ve heard PTSD and GAD. I’ve heard bipolar. I’ve heard borderline personality disorder (but never from a qualified professional so I’m more doubtful of this one). While on a terrible psych medication I was told borderline schizophrenic but never while not on the evil psych med so that one I get to say isn’t mine.

I swing from depression and suicidal ideation to anxiety and hypomania. This is more tiresome for me than for you. I promise.  I can’t get away.

I’m a weird balance between extrovert and introvert. Finding the right balance is hard. I need people something fierce. But they are draining and tiring.

I am so very driven by my attachment needs. I am driven towards and away from people at the same time. It feels like a war inside my brain. I am afraid to attach too much to any one person. I’m afraid to not try with everyone because you never know who will fit.

But I have a full time job plus overtime of socializing and it is not actually good for me. But culling people feels brutal. Even just putting people on a longer rotation feels hard.

And now that my kids are bonding with my friends… kicking them out of my life is a whole different story. Just like I’m not real approving of polyfuckery in front of children I’m not that thrilled about the idea of a revolving character cast of friends. Kids need to know who is in their lives. Kids needs to have relationships that are not just instant-friends.

So I’m trying to be ok with some people being on a longer leash but not out of my life. It is a really hard transition in thinking.

I think Pam hit level 2 because I completely discounted her as a friend many times over the years and she kept reappearing. We would have intense conversations and I would assume that she never wanted to speak to me again after what I said and… there she was calling me again.

From across the world she kept calling me. So I developed the habit of dropping whatever I was doing because Pam wanted to talk to me.

It was like how Air Force Michael managed to call me from Turkey spontaneously several times while I was institutionalized as a teenager. Only I didn’t get to talk to AF Michael because… I wasn’t at home to take the calls. And he stopped calling after that.

So I fucking answer the phone for Pam. Because I can say whatever crack-brained shit that comes to mind and she keeps calling.

I don’t remember if I wrote what was so amazing about Shanna’s second birthday yesterday. I think I kind of hinted but didn’t get to the meat.

I emailed my friends and said: “My kid needs a party and I don’t want to do it. You do it.”

So they did. And I sat in a chair. And it felt like magic. I felt loved. I did feel supported in that net feeling.

I don’t know why I have such a violent need to hurt myself if I try to get that feeling from a party that is actually literally about me. But I have some suspicions.

I don’t want this feeling for the rest of my life. But you can’t decide to “just stop feeling something”.

You have to decide what you want and move towards it.

Time to go set up for the Tea Party.

Anger and feelings

Now my ergonomic keyboard isn’t working. Because there is a conspiracy to destroy my arms.

Today was a therapy day. We talked about my feelings. Cause I have them. And I pay someone to listen to me fucking talk about them.

Something that happened before with running: after a while I can’t tell the difference between the different kinds of stomach pain. Anxiety, hunger, and illness all feel the same. They can all involve vomiting (or not) and tons of nausea. There isn’t much difference. So as my exercise increases and I’m using more calories my belly hurts a lot of the time. And I can’t tell the difference between hunger and anxiety. Which freaks me out chemically.

We talked a lot about my feeling angry earlier this week. And how my reaction to feeling anger is days of self-recrimination and punishment. I don’t feel like it is ok to be angry.

Even though these days the extremity of my anger is expressed through slamming a cabinet shut. And not that hard. Because I’ve already had to repair cabinets I’ve ripped off the wall and I uhhh don’t want to do that again. I’ve got enough shit to do.

I have punched a hole in a wall in years. I haven’t cut myself in years. I haven’t hit anyone in years. I haven’t inappropriately screamed and screamed at someone in a long time. I have screamed at my kids, but not recently.

I’ve been holding it together. I haven’t flipped out on anyone beyond a quavering voice in a long time.

I realized today that I haven’t had a panic attack in months. (I think that this is helped by how much pot I use.) That is a big deal. Through my teen years and my twenties I didn’t have very many months without panic attacks. Heck, for much of that time I didn’t have many weeks without panic attacks. They tend to go in waves. They get really bad for a while then they subside a little for a while. I’ll take whatever reprieve I can get.

I’m doing better. I really am. People who have known me since I was a teenager tell me I am much more calm. That’s a good sign.

But when I feel angry I treat that as deserving as much punishment as if I went to the park and started slapping kids. My standards for myself really aren’t within a range I can accomplish. I can’t stop feeling angry sometimes.

I haven’t raged at anyone in a long time. This is about as much control as someone like me gets. I spend a lot of time feeling like I am pathetic and disgusting if this is the best I can do. I’m not actually a nice person. I can just play one on tv.

My shrink asked me why on earth have I been babysitting so much for other people lately. I told her it is because I want those kids to know me. I want to have real relationships with them. I have known some of them since birth. I desperately hope they will see me as more than just an occasional party host. I want them to think of me as a caregiver.

That requires giving some care. With a smile on my face. When I feel frustration I need to ACKNOWLEDGE it and talk about how I will deal with it. That conscious modeling teaches the kids so much. My kids and other kids.

“Gosh. I’m feeling really frustrated because this isn’t going how I want it to go. I suppose I have a few choices. I could scream and jump up and down. Will that make things better? (Kids chorus: “No.”) Err, I could get mad and break it because then I won’t have to deal with this again. Will that make things better? (Kids chorus: “No.”) Oh. Am I going to have to take a deep breath, calm down, and try again? (Kids chorus: “Yes.”) Ah crum. That sounds like work. Alllllllllllll riiiiiiiiiiiight.”

Whine is intentional. It makes them giggle.

I’m not sure when I will feel like what I am doing is “good enough”. Part of my problem is, I deeply admire people who are making radically different choices. I want to emulate them. I want to pattern after them because I like them and respect them and look up to them.

But if I do I will wreck the good thing I’ve got going here. Some things aren’t compatible.

I told my shrink that I’ve been having a lot more sexual fantasy/visualization stuff again. She asked like what. I said I miss going to grocery stores looking for a trick. My favorite game is going to a vanilla place (not just grocery stores–but man I love them) and looking for someone. I win if I can get someone home and naked in under two hours. I’ve won the game. Not every time, of course. That wouldn’t be a very fun game.

I think my shrink hasn’t quite fully picked up on the “queer” thing. Multiple times she used very heterosexually focused language to describe who I would pick up and what I would do with them. I corrected her.

Girls who like casual sex are much harder to find than boys who like casual sex. That doesn’t mean I like boys more. Just that when it comes to going hunting, sometimes I like shooting fish in a barrel. Ahem.

She told me that the fantasy shit is “very empowering”. Which is a phrase that triggers my gag reflex. I’ve uhhh heard a bit too much about how victims should empower themselves. It always sounds squicky to me. (Squick, for those who don’t know, is the visceral, physical sensation you get when someone does something you really don’t like. Like someone sucking your toes if you hate that sort of thing. When you get that instinctive shiver of “yuck“. I kind of want to go on to a long list of things that squick some people but I’ll be kind.)

The scared, shameful, dirty feeling after I get angry is probably the most pressing “PTSD symptom” I have right now. That anxiety eats me for days. It means I can’t sleep. It makes me shorter and shorter.

If I feel intense anger it is really hard to calm down. It is really hard to stop feeling attacked and threatened.

I’d like to be clear that I’m rationally aware that no one is attacking me or threatening me at this stage of my life. Not no one. It’s been a long fucking time. I am not saying that I’m getting threats and so of course I’m scared.

No. If I go through the experience of getting angry (my baby-sitter being kind of flakey is annoying but not really that catastrophic–I get other kid care right now) even if I don’t do anything inappropriate I have days of fierce, mean, nasty self-recrimination. I eat irregularly until my stomach is a mass of pain. I don’t sleep enough–not nearly enough. The last few days have involved a lot of staying up late and still waking up early to grind on what a disgusting piece of shit I am.

I’m better than I was. I can distract myself if I’m awake and in front of a screen and smoking pot. Then I can stop the inside-voice-ranting. If I try to lay in bed and go back to sleep… Forget it. The brain weasels will eat me. I’ll end up crying and retreating to the garage to let Noah sleep anyway.

I suppose I use writing about the way I would use a sponsor if I were the AA type. Instead I smoke my pot. With the blessing of no less than two doctors and a therapist.

My shrink told me that I should probably move my blog to being behind some kind of wall. Folks under 18 shouldn’t be allowed to get access to my main writing.

I have feels about that. But if I’m going to be publishing books for the under 18 market I might now also want to have a public blog where I talk about the super hot stripper who was happy to uhhh come to the bathroom with me at a strip club one night. Or the other really hot girl I fucked in an elevator at a club. We really weren’t supposed to be doing that there.

My life has been pretty good.

Yeah. I like girls.

 

Distraction

If you do much research on mental illness, or really any undesirable behavior you want to eliminate, distraction is key.

This week in therapy my shrink spent a lot of time harping on the idea that I need to start being a lot more choosy about who I allow into my life. I always wonder how much my shrinks judge me. No, actually I don’t wonder very often or I would be very paranoid. Occasionally I wonder. When therapists very rarely encourage me towards squeezing people out of my life (it is rare but it happens) I always wonder how long they have sat on that impulse.

When did my description of my friend start bothering you? They never tell me, of course.

Therapy is such a weird beast. It is a relationship but not a a real one. It is unidirectional and unbalanced. There is honesty but not full honesty. Truth but not the whole truth. The whole truth involves someones opinions which I shouldn’t be taking into consideration.

I shouldn’t change to make my therapist happy. She otherwise isn’t part of my life. I should not alter the support I get to make her happy.

But sometimes you do have to follow their advice because they are right. She doesn’t say “so and so is icki” she says “what do you get from this relationship and what do you give to it? If the balance doesn’t work for you then you need to move on”. She says to me, “I know that for most of your life you have had to accept relationships with anyone who wanted to have a relationship with you. That is no longer true. You need to keep your children safe.”

I was raped over and over because I made a lot of stupid choices. Because I accept any relationship that is offered. Because I don’t say “no” when I should.

Yeah yeah yeah people think of me as being overly firm with my “no” delivery. You only know what my life is like after more than half a dozen rapes or more. The people who have known me the longest met me when I had been raped at least half a dozen times.

The things that happen to you change you. I did not know how to say “no”. I have learned to say it loudly and firmly. Loudly and firmly enough that I often bother people who wish I was “softer” about the process. Oh fucking well.

“Most people have no more than five people in their true inner circle.” (Quoting my shrink again.)

Jenny. Noah. K. My kids. Pam. That’s six. I have absolute trust in their love for me. Do I feel that way about anyone else? Not really. Jenny bought her way in by being the only person who comforted me during a horrible childhood. K has been the single most helpful person by a humongous margin during the parenting journey. I talk to her more often than anyone I don’t live with. I think she is the most motherly friend I have ever had. She has actually shown up when the rubber meets the road for the past few years. Pam has been with me for more than half of my life. To the best of my recollection I have gotten really pissed off at her, but never for actual boundary violations. I can’t remember one.

Other people were in the inner circle at other points. When they were able to show up. Life changes. I don’t stop loving them. Not a jot. But I don’t have trust any more. If I search my body this moment I’m not angry about the fact that I have seen the waxing and waning of so many friendships. They were with me when it made sense. It doesn’t make as much sense any more.

I can’t explain what it was like in my childhood. I was not allowed to cry. My crying irritated people and it was beaten out of me. That’s a lot of why I cry so much now. I was horribly brutalized and then punished if I grieved.

want to write in excruciating detail about my current emotional outpouring towards people. But I don’t want it as part of the record. There are names I don’t write about. Lots of them. There are lots of specific details I don’t want to announce in public. Mostly because I’m aware that my perceptions are highly biased and I’m a much bigger judgmental asshole than people understand and I need to keep it that way.

I don’t want the fall out. I’m that lame. So I’m having trouble working through the emotions. Writing things out is a lot of how I get rid of things. It has become very useful for me over the years. (Yes, people who like people journals get these things out without the public fall out. Clearly I don’t write that way. You don’t get to pick the writing talent you get. You just get it.)

So I’ve been looking for distraction. Painting went so breathtakingly well. The only time I raised my voice was when Shanna was backing into an open paint can. (It was a good save. She wasn’t cranky.) *phew* I did it.

I’m reorganizing toys again. Because I like playing house. Because it makes me happy. I refine how I organize as I watch them use things. I try to figure out where how to have things “live” where they are played with. I want to make their set up convenient for them so it is easy for them to clean up.

It is hard to find a system when you are a kid. You literally don’t have the schema to do it. Kids need to be shown how to find systems. Some people are naturally very gifted, but usually there is the overall framework of systemization within their life and that is why they are so accustomed.

I’m not very good at providing constant systemic living. I will never run a prison. I believe that needs and wants change dramatically over time and it is good to be constantly tweaking your system to be more appropriate for where you are today.

Sustainability is hard to find. What can you keep up? Deciding to be rigid in your system means you exclude millions of awesome options. I like trying lots of things. I need more flexibility.

It is hard reading my shrinks’ evaluation of me. I don’t think it is accurate that I can’t work because of relational issues. Although I had a lot of job volatility throughout my work life. Ha.

Today will be fun. I have babysitting time this morning. I am going to sit here and do all the work for the home school yearbook. (I’m a slacker. I should have done this a month ago.) I need to go to REI. That will be festive. I’m glad I can do it without the kids. I would like to work on the reading list for the book, but I only get three hours. I will need to get it done soon. Blah.

I need to do scheduling today. I need to plan out my running and exercise. I’m doing a half marathon with a friend in October and I’m really not doing appropriate exercise to support that. I have to start. It takes planning or I just don’t get it done. Deep sigh.

I don’t understand how other people naturally just do exercise. I have to plan how I will force myself. I have to have a reason to exercise–an upcoming obligation that will require my body to have something it doesn’t have right now. Long-term planning is too hard.

Distraction. What is distraction? What is focus? What am I doing with my life? Are the people who come and go the focus or a distraction? Is the painting a distraction or a focus? Is reorganizing the toys so they are easier for the kids to clean up a distraction or a focus?

Isn’t it all about your priorities? Isn’t it different for every person you ask?

Is writing a distraction from my life or one of the focuses in my life? Gardening? House maintenance (both of the repair and of the cleaning variety)?

What is life?

What does it mean to have a focus in your life? I read a lot about what other people do with their time. You can tell what people care about by looking at how they spend their time.

It’s ok that we are all different. If we were all the same that would be boring. We need symbiotic relationships.

The inner circle doesn’t mean that you only have relationships with people you trust that much. There are lots of other kinds of relationships. It is ok to share smaller pieces of yourself with people.

And it’s ok to walk away when it no longer works for you.

It doesn’t make me a bad person. People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. Not everyone will be there forever.

There are some perverts who probably shouldn’t be around my kids. I recognize that in a larger sense–my kids are not exposed to the broader bdsm community.

Things that are ok for me aren’t necessarily ok for my kids. My kids are impressionable.

Boundaries are complicated.

What makes someone an asshole? Caring about their own needs to the point where they are ok with other people getting hurt sometimes as they take care of themselves.

What makes someone a bitch? Saying or doing things to hurt other people on purpose to be spiteful.

Notice how the gendered one is a lot nastier? I notice that in my language.

I’m an asshole. I try hard to not be a bitch.

I don’t have time to explain why this dude is wrong. There are so many ways he is wrong that I would permanently damage my arms. Ain’t worth it.

I get to walk away. Yeah, it might hurt you but I am not obligated to sit around and tend your feelings. Notice how you have never tended mine? Fuck right off.

But spite isn’t necessary. What’s the difference? When you are writing, what’s the damn difference?

Well, I say fuck you to the universe but I don’t say it to people. I don’t publicly (or privately) slam people when I end a relationship. In general I maintain a policy of being very positive when I talk about former friends/partners/acquaintances. I’m well-fucking-aware that you are judged by how you judge other people

So I’m an asshole, but I try to limit the scope.

always have the right to walk away. It is the most American attitude one can have. Well, or the other American attitude “I have the right to own a gun so I can shoot people who seem scary“.

I seem scary to a lot of people. To the point where strangers will comment on it in public. I worry a lot about guns.

I kind of hope that the next revolution in this country is a call to disarmament. Citizens give up their guns so that police can de-militarize.

Wouldn’t it be nice?

Wouldn’t it be nice to stop hearing about mass shootings at schools?

And wouldn’t it be nice if white people were called terrorists when they instill terror just like people of other races? Parity in discussion would help us figure out the common solutions.

I need to answer a whole bunch of emails. I haven’t forgotten you. I just… haven’t scheduled yet. Scheduling goes in batches. I can’t handle adding things in between scheduling-fests. Then I get “over scheduled” and I’m shaking by the end of the month. It sucks.

Tonight I get to have dinner with an old friend before we go to the Diana Gabaldon reading. I’m excited. There’s a new book in a series I love.

This will be the very first time I’ve ever been to a reading for an author I know. I have heard random people at college but I had no previous knowledge of them. A step towards fandom I guess?

What is the focus of your life? How do your actions support that? How does your time spent support that? How does your energy spent support that?

When you are old, what will you appreciate more? That you spent time working in your garden or that you spent time with people you will definitely not know by then? Depends on the person. Depends on how the time with them is spent.

Sometimes you need to pick the garden.

Boundaries are hard. Being an asshole is hard.

post-therapy drabs

My shrink thinks it is probably a good thing that I am creating space to stay home and be quiet and restful given how much my emotions are bouncing. I haven’t screamed or freaked out… I’m just acting more depressed. That’s good! The problem with parents like me, the mentally ill kind, is the changes and the fluctuations are a lot of the hard. Even just depression is easier to live with.

Better to be quiet and slow than anxious and screaming. If I am anxious enough that I am shaking, my teeth rattle, I alternate flushing with chills, and my stomach hurts like crazy… all before I go a little nutty and start shrieking about shit that don’t fucking matter.

Slow the fuck down. Clearly I am in over my head. Maybe it would be nice if I could do ALL THE THINGS but clearly I can’t. We all have limitations.

Most of my session today consisted of me going down lists of people in my life and telling her how things are going in that relationship. “Who is _____ again?” “How do you know _____?” “Wait, is this another new name? I’ve heard about this person before? I have? Oh man. Refresh my memory…. OH! I don’t remember the cruise ship but I remember that you like to share your boyfriends with her.”

Love you so much.

I am pulling standing invitation stuff from my calendar. I am having terrible mixed feelings about that but I cannot keep the schedule I have.

Some of the mixed feelings are stupid. I shouldn’t feel mixed. This isn’t a hard decision… only it is. Sometimes making decisions to see people less is terribly hard. I feel like a bitch. I feel like a big meanie. I feel like I am so hateful.

It’s not giving me what I need. And it uses a lot of energy even in proportion to the amount of time it takes. I spend days and days processing this.

I need a break.

I’m sorry. It isn’t your fault. I don’t need a break because you are bad. I just need a break. You take effort. You are worth it. I love you.

Sometimes that happens. I know you are worth the effort you require. I just don’t have it to give. I’m really sorry.

It is hard that relationships give or take very different amounts of energy. You can’t say “Mommy friends will give +2 support and take -3 patience and +2 validation.” It don’t work that way.

I don’t know if I am an introvert or an extrovert but I certainly require a lot of different kinds of relationships and a lot of alone time.

So my shrink and I did a lot of evaluating the relationships in my life. Yup, I talk about you mother fuckers. +2, -4/ + 6 -1/ +3 -2

I’m kidding. I don’t assign numbers in session. I’m just fucking with you right now. But we did go through evaluations of what I get from people. I try hard to see the specific value people offer. I think about it really hard. Frequently I stop and think really hard about what I appreciate about the people in my life.

I’m a big whiner so I’m grateful that people put up with me. I specifically talk about that gratitude. Yeah, I alternate it with bitching. She helps me figure out tactful wordings for situations where I am experiencing what feels like a clash of cultures.

It’s why I pay someone. “Please help me be less of an asshole. THANKS!”

I want to stop typing. ttfn oh internet

Post-therapy

I was a bitch to my therapist today. I have already apologized. I walked in looking for a fight. I started out the day freaking out.

I’m going to have to deal with this “handwriting makes me feel like an abused child” trigger at some point. I can’t keep freaking out at my kids over it. I will fuck them up.

My therapist voluntarily offered to lower her rate of pay so I can have more babysitting. I really feel bad for being such a bitch today.

We kept having minor misunderstandings about definitions and word choices and I… couldn’t rationally parse them out. I just got defensive and snippy.

I feel hella guilty. And yet if my shrink never sees my bitch-tastic side then… why would she believe me that it exists?

Then I went to a fabulous acupuncture + cupping appointment. First day results are I feel a lot less pain in my neck. I can’t tell much about some of the other stuff. I also went to the gym tonight and did weight training. Like forking everyone has been telling me to do.

I did my forking weight training–ok?!

Looks like I may not make it to Portland this year due to scheduling constraints. That feels like a bummer. But I know extremely busy people. Can’t bitch about people being busy. That’s life.

I guess I’ll just have to run locally. So I don’t forget how. Luckily I’ve picked up an occasional running buddy who lives six miles from my house. And the peasants rejoice: Huzzah.

I got a nasty comment this morning on an older post. I’m not going to look it up again. Something about how my true happiness will be attained through being raped in the butt for days. No, it’s not the first of its kind. I’ve had others. Not a lot. I assume I will get more as the years go by.

Isn’t that how it goes?

Talk about rape: have people tell you that you should be raped. At least I have some snappy come backs: “Already been done! Ha! You are late to the game you slacker!” Err, or maybe not so snappy come backs.

Sigh.

I’m up to 38 books so far this year. I love reading. I think I’m going to try and push myself to hit 52 by June 1st. Only 14 books to go. That is fewer than I read in January. But May is a busier month than January. We’ll see. This year I get to reread. I’m visiting old friends. It is delightful to share their company again.

I think I’ll spend more of that babysitting time reading without disruption. It’s practically a vacation.

My attitude sucks donkey dick and I need to turn it around. I can’t be a cunt all day tomorrow. My free pass expired a while ago. I can’t do this. Be fucking nice, Krissy.

I don’t wanna be nice. I want to hurt people or scream or cry. Something like that. All of those things. Excuse me sir, but may I crack your ribs? I miss hearing that last horrified gasp of pain.

I feel so nasty. My shrink asked if I was up near an anniversary… not really.

I’m just… a bitch. Fuck.

post-therapy

Yesterday was a moderately challenging therapy session. I didn’t cry or anything so it doesn’t get to the level of “hard” per se. My therapist was uhhh “kind” enough to tell me about another support group in Oakland. No, actually, having to drive to Oakland more often would not lower my stress. Sorry.

My shrink and I talked about the difficulty driving. When I am alone in the car I distract myself from my irrational desire to drive the car into dangerous situations by playing music very loudly and I sing along at the very top of my lungs. Frequently when I arrive places I’m hoarse from all the screeching. My kids get kind of pissy with me when I play loud music or scream along with the radio so I don’t do it when they are in the car. Which actually makes driving with them harder than driving alone.

I wish that I didn’t have suicidal ideation so often. I wish that I could make the decisions about my life without factoring in, “Well, how many hours of self-harm thoughts can I entertain today without slipping?” I’m a lot better than I used to be. There is definite improvement. I’m not “all better”. Driving is still really hard. Most of my slipping these days comes in the form of massive dissociation so I have no idea what is going on with my body so I am constantly covered in bruises I have no idea how I received. It’s pretty minor compared to the cutting so this is a big step up. But man all the bruises have been hurting more lately. I’m getting old. Ha.

We did EMDR on the driving ideation issues. The phrase that kept coming up (sometimes I get word phrases sometimes I get picture associations) was “terrible trouble”. As I’m driving places my stomach shreds itself because I am afraid of the trouble I am going to get into on the other side of the drive. I get it going to the grocery store so it’s not all social anxiety I can kinda sorta justify. It’s just associated with driving,

I was really in trouble all the fucking time as a kid. I’m not over it. Sometimes that feels pretty pathetic.

We talked about the whole “getting in trouble for vomiting” thing in the form of the demanded apology. (I heard back from the woman who wanted one. I think she accepted my apology. I still have some mixed feelings about needing to give one for… vomiting. Not like I picked the activity of the night on purpose to fuck over her life.)

I am so delighted that when I get in trouble these days… it’s really not a big deal. If the two women who were mad at me continue being mad at me till the day I die…. that’s really not that big of a deal. Ok, one seems to be over it, the other has already hated me since I was 19. If she keeps hating me it isn’t a loss. Really if she hates me that may be a badge of honor proving that I am making correct choices in life.

That happens you know. People disliking you is sometimes a really good sign.

Depends on whether you want people like that to like you. If you don’t particularly respect someone it can be a particularly good thing for them to dislike you. I’m just sayin’.

When I walked into my therapists office she said, “Wow. You look exhausted.” That can’t be a good sign. Yes, I am. Notice how I haven’t been writing? I’ve been sleeping in lately. Even with getting several hours of extra sleep each night for a while… I still look like shit. I’m not sure if I’m sick or what. My stomach was really off yesterday. Eating at all was awful. But no food no fuel so I have to eat even when it hurts.

I don’t have “cold or flu” symptoms. Just stomach pain, exhaustion, and general pain. Maybe that is a flu like symptom. But I still don’t know that I have the flu. and I am officially not allowed to get sick for at least five days. Damnit.

I’m struggling with my outsiders view on another persons marriage. I’m experiencing a lot of anxiety about situations I can’t control. Terrible Trouble. It’s coming. Always. Always. Always coming.

I feel scared, helpless, worthless, and stupid. I don’t know the right thing to say or do. So it must be because I am defective.

I feel weary.

In therapy we talked about my latest efforts to be hypervigilant about my hypervigilance. Maybe this is why I am so fucking tired. I am trying to stop counting people in a room. I’m trying to only check for exits when I arrive in a new place instead of checking every few minutes like an OCD routine. I am not made more safe by checking that the exit door is still there every three minutes. I am probably made more unsafe by obsessing over whether the door is still fucking there. Really, genius? The fucking door is going to move? No. I’m afraid I will get disoriented and lose the direction. It’s not that the door will move. It is that I spent a very high percentage of my life dizzy. I’m always afraid I will lose my inner compass and not be able to make it out. Yay vertigo.

I do wonder if that is a lot of what is wearing me down. Being that conscious of my nearly sub-conscious obsessive checking is really hard. Restraining myself from counting the people in the room over and over and over is a lot harder on me than just doing the fucking counting. I’m trying to extinguish this behavior on the slim hope that some day I won’t have to obsessively concentrate on my nearly sub-conscious behavior. Hopefully some day I will have the energy back from the obsessive counting and the monitoring of the counting and I will be back in the net positive. Hopefully this is saving long-term effort.

But those gambles only sometimes work out. The deficit of exhaustion in the meantime is really rough.

I wrote to Noah’s family yesterday. That always increases the shitty I feel. I miss my mom. Why do I only get to talk about my kids with these people who don’t like me anyway? It’s really hard to keep trying when I know his mother doesn’t actually have any affection for me at all.

But she loves my kids. And my kids deserve all the love they can get. And Noah isn’t going to facilitate a relationship because he doesn’t care or understand what a complete lack of family can do to you. So it is up to me. I understand the scope of the problem and I’m not as personally repelled by the situation. I get why he ran away and didn’t come back. But that attitude will hurt my kids and I can’t let that be their entire experience of life.

Noah’s mom may not win prizes for being perfect but she is being a great mail order grandmother. I should not denigrate that. The kids appreciate that she thinks about them and makes effort. I need to respond. I wish it weren’t so fucking hard.

I’m doing one of those cycles where I don’t understand why I try so hard for relationships when people don’t really like me anyway they tolerate me as an alternative to being completely alone.

I can find ways to minimize the amount I believe anyone might like me. It’s a super power. Or something. Even though people come over. Even though I can tell you that it is irrational.

Irrational feelings happen anyway and they are very tiring. Exhausting. Trying to argue with your brain all day that people don’t actually hate you is really hard.

My arms hurt. I’m so tired I keep randomly crying because I can’t force myself to not cry. It’s too hard to not-cry.

Ain’t we always looking for a silver lining?

What am I grateful for? Noah. Always Noah. Shanna. Calli.

How come my “what” I’m grateful for always comes down to a “who”? Because outside of having access to a non-shitty keyboard I can live without pretty much every what. Ok, I need food/shelter/booze like they tell you in Yakitat. But really what do I feel grateful for? My garden. That’s a what.

It’s not about what. It’s who. I get to spend all day figuring out how to be nice. We talk about how sometimes folks put their meanie-pants on. That doesn’t mean they are necessarily ALWAYS mean. Everyone has bad days. Bullying is quite the discussion here. Just because someone has done something you dislike that doesn’t automatically make them a bully. Pleasing you is not a mandatory part of life. Being mean to you is different than doing things you don’t like. And even your best friends will have days when they put their meanie-pants on. The meanest of people will have good days.

What makes someone a monster?

If I’m not qualified to judge who the fuck is?

Calli and I went to sleep talking about how my teddy bear, Ted. T. Bear, is very good at scaring off creepy crawly night monsters. He’s nice to his humans and super fierce with night monsters. Sometimes the best of creatures have to be scary sometimes. Sometimes being scary is part of being able to survive.

For the whole rest of my life I am going to treasure the memories I have of my children. There will be no more relationships in my life that represent such perfect trust.

I am so sorry, mommy.

I wonder how long my kids will like me. My therapist wants me to believe that the people I know are all aberrations. I think I can count on my fingers the number of people I know who like their parents and who actively want relationships with their families. My shrink tells me this is because I broadcast a wavelength that scares the shit out of people who like their families and they don’t really want to hang out with me. That doesn’t mean they don’t exist. It is possible that I will come out the far side with children who like me.

If I make it to a natural death that is a win on my life. Sometimes I feel so sad that it is true. When I drive I feel scared that I don’t want to be alive bad enough. Some day my lack of burning desire to be alive is going to be a problem. It’s not just that I have to deal with the “want to die” urge. I need to find some way to actively want to live. I don’t think I do. I don’t want to hurt people. Is that a good enough reason to stay alive? If that is all I have it has to be good enough for today.

Calli and Shanna and Noah. That has to be enough. I don’t want to hurt them. I’ll just cry. That doesn’t hurt anyone.

I don’t even know for sure why I’m crying. I don’t know if this is just exhaustion. I can’t even tell if I’m sad. I’m just crying and crying.

I feel bitter right this minute that smoking pot is the most effective means of getting it into my system if it weren’t for my pre-fucked up lungs. Thanks for all the chain smoking, mom. Chronic bronchitis. If that kills me it will be kind of ironic. It can, you know. Stupid pills aren’t very effective. Well, they are kind of effective. They make me tired as fuck. Which does slow down the anxiety. But in a less useful way.

I’m clearly trying to avoid smoking. Otherwise I would just write about how awesome it is a medication. Instead I will grumble.

Hey, that’s a ‘what’ I’m grateful for. Pot. Pot provides more than 60% of my ability to stop feeling scared and instead feel calm and happy with what I’m doing. How sad is that? Well it would be way the fuck more sad if my state still had this medication banned. *phew* So I’m glad that this medication exists. I’m grateful for all the lovely official dispensaries that will give me medication IN THE FORM OF CANDY. Oh man. The candy is awesome but a bit more expensive than the pills. Everything is a trade off.

Not to mention that I try to avoid eating a lot of medicated candy in front of my kids. That spells trouble.

They are very clear on the appearance of medicated candy and that they must not eat it. We have looked at the medication specifically and talked about how it looks like candy but it is really medicine and it will make you feel terrible if you take it when you don’t need it.

We talk a lot about appropriate doses of things. I eat more food than them. I drink more water in a day. I take more medication. These things are body-weight dependent activities and I am bigger. Trying to take in more than you need is really bad for you and lets go over the list of why until you can rattle it off as fast or faster than I can.

Don’t eat food, drink water, or take medication above what you actually need or it is bad for you. Just seems kind of logical.

Uhm, I base the “don’t eat too much food” on my childhood where I went through periods of forcing myself to eat long past the point of hunger… sometimes cause I had nothing else to do. When I was in eighth grade I hit this stage where one package of ramen just didn’t quite fill me up. (Now as an adult I would say “add an egg for protein then” as a kid… I would neither have thought of that nor been willing to actually consider it if I did think of it. Eggs come one way: scrambled hard.) So I forced myself to learn to eat two because I didn’t want to throw away some noodles.

I’ve got some issues around food and money and stuff. Like you do.

As much as I love Pam I’m kinda glad she’s busy tonight. I’m annoyed with myself for adding an extra dinner guest to the week on Thursday. Friday night Noah and I have a babysitter scheduled so we can go on a date. If I can fucking stay awake. Pathetic. But the extra dinner guest is a friend going through a really hard break up. I could be selfish and say I’m tired. He’s so sad though. Really all I’m going to give him is 2-3 hours of attention. I’m not so tired I can’t get it up for that.

At the end of your life you will not be remembered for how you felt. You will be remembered for how you make other people feel. I can cough up 2-3 hours of talking to a grieving person. It lightens the load. It really and truly does. If I thought it “did nothing” I wouldn’t bother but it does a lot.

I’ve read too many cases of near-suicide. “Someone surprised me by paying attention to me and convincing me that I still had worth.”

I can see worth in just about anybody. I can sit down and explain the worth I see in you if you want. If it will make you feel better I’d be thrilled to help you see how you fit into the kaleidoscope of life. You have worth. You matter? Want me to point out the spokes in your life? I can show you who you touch and how. You matter. You do.

Why is it so much easier to see for other people than myself? Don’t know but it is. Well, I can see my worth. I just don’t always feel like I have the strength to keep on keepin on. My worth is mostly in my ability to lighten the load for other people. I’m really good at it. It is a particular talent.

I used to think that my only “talent” was speed reading. You can’t go to a talent competition and win a prize for it so of course I thought I was a loser as a child. Now I think I have always underestimated the value of my brain.

Now I think my strongest talent is empathy. It’s a super power. At least occasionally.

But I’m tired. So very tired.